Ye Olde Election Day

Bloggified by Jake on Tuesday, November 7, 2006

Today is Election Day all across the United States, the day that embodies one of the core values for which our forefathers fought and died more than 230 years ago, the right of citizens to self-govern.

In honor of their dream and sacrafices, nearly 10% of those eligible to do so will head to the polls today, a majority of whom will decide how to vote based on straight party lines, a single issue ("He supports gay marriage so I can't support him to be my State Inspector of Mines"), or whatever out of context mud has been slung in millions of dollars worth of television commercials and junk mail.

This dreary reflection on the state of our democracy was at the heart of the milestone 250th issue of Captain America, where Roger Stern and John Byrne (you know, I just now when I typed that noticed for the first time that their names rhyme) imagined a world where Cap, the quintessential American, would run for this nation's highest office.

But before we get into all the political falderal, Cap has to beat up a bunch of terrorists who've taken a hostage.Ah, remember the good old days when terrorists could be depicted as average-looking white guys? Nary a turban in sight! Of course, in 1980 Communism posed a much larger threat to America than radical Muslim extremists. Afterall, the commies made us miss the Olympics while all the Muslims did was take a bunch of hostages at the Iranian embassy and make us wait in line for gas.

Captain America, we learn, just happened to be strolling by when he heard the stand off between police and the terrorists and leapt into action. This raises the question of why any criminals in the Marvel Universe ever bothered committing crimes in New York City. Face it. If Cap hadn't come along when he did, Spider-Man would have swung through the window and webbed up all the bad guys guns. Or Daredevil would have tossed his billy club and hit them all right between the eyes, ricocheting it from one skull to the next. Or Punisher or Ant-Man or Iron Fist or Thing or Scarlet Witch or Dr. Strange or Moon Knight or someone else would come to screw up their well thought out plans.

If you're a bad guy, especially one with even a hint of a superpower, why don't you go terrorize Chicago? It's still a huge urban area, but with a fraction of the superhero to normal person ratio.

In this case, the bad guys struck here because it's the site of a political convention... for the New Populist Party?

Seriously, guys? You thought the way to make a big impact and get out your radical terrorist message was to hijack a third party's convention? You could have gotten more publicity spilling McDonald's coffee in your lap or having a cat nurse a litter of puppies. You could write your extremist slogans on baseball caps, send them to all of America's 99-year-olds, and when they turn 100, Willard Scott would broadcast their photos wearing your hat, spreading your evil thoughts through Midwestern America via wholesome, inoffensive morning chat TV!

The head of the NPP thanks Captain America for saving the day, then gets the crazy idea of giving Americans an opportunity to vote for someone they want to vote for instead of someone they'd rather vote for than that other guy who's going to raise taxes and anger Jesus/revoke all civil liberties in the name of Haliburton.Cap politely agrees to consider the proposition, but has no intention of taking the offer. But when the story gets leaked to the press, it fires up the electorate and Steve Rogers finds himself unable to make a case against Captain America for President."You do know Captain America didn't go to Viet Nam, right? And all those medals he got in World War II? Well, you should hear what the Howling Commandoes for Truth have to say about those. And how certain are we that Supersoldier Serum contained no stem cells? You know, we see Captain America all the time, but there's no 'Mrs. America.' A man his age... still single... I'm not saying anything, just... saying..."

Captain America has plenty of people telling him to run, but one lone voice of reason leads the opposition and stands out because of the clarity and sincerity of its message.Yes, Tony Stark, how right you are. Getting politics mixed into this whole superhero thing would just be one big clusterfuck. Red tape, corruption, cloning of Norse Gods, aligning yourself with supervillains enlisted to hunt down your best friends, building superhero concentration camps. You're absolutely right, nothing good could come from a storyline going that direction.

And so Captain America politely declines.Thus Cap leaves politics to the politicians and returns to his duties of preserving the American Dream... and looking ahead to the next issue that apparently involved fighting Batroc.

Now get out and vote. If you don't know much about what's on your local ballot, the League of Women Voters has all kinds of unbiased, easy to understand explanations of the issues.

If nothing else, just go out and vote against the incumbents regardless of their parties.

0 sarcastic replies:

Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)