Superman Renounces His U.S. Citizenship

Posted: July 6, 2011 in Uncategorized
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You Got To Be Shitting Me Entry #20

July 6, 2011

Published by NY Times April 29, 2011

For much of his career, Superman has fought for truth, justice and the American way. In the landmark Action Comics No. 900, which was released on Wednesday, Superman decides he has to stand for something bigger and he renounces his United States citizenship.

The Man of Steel’s declaration, “I’m tired of having my actions construed as instruments of U.S. policy,” follows accusations that he caused an international incident in Tehran. Superman flew to the country during a huge protest, where he stood silent for one day, to show his support for the demonstrators. The 24 hours pass with a mix of appreciation (flowers and flags) and fear (hurled Molotov cocktails). But the government of Iran sees Superman as an agent of the United States and feels his action is an act of war. “Truth, justice and the American way – it’s not enough anymore,” Superman tells the president’s national security adviser. “The world’s too small. Too connected.” He then makes the decision to go before the United Nations and renounce his American citizenship.

Fox News reported on the super-controversy and the message boards of comic book Web sites like the have been flooded with responses that are both typical, “It’s the end of Superman as we know it,” to the sublime, “Even Superman is fed up with taxes. He will now be a citizen of the Cooke Islands, where he has been hiding his assets for years.”

The citizens of the DC universe know of Superman’s alien origin since the first issue of Action Comics published in 1938, but with his base of operation primarily being the American city of Metropolis, it has been easy for Americans to think of the hero as one of their own. (The true citizen, of course, is Clark Kent.)

“Superman is a visitor from a distant planet who has long embraced American values,” said DC Comics co-publishers Jim Lee and Dan DiDio in a statement. “As a character and an icon, he embodies the best of the American Way.” And though Superman will “put a global focus on his never ending battle,” the statement continued, “he remains, as always, committed to his adopted home and his roots as a Kansas farm boy from Smallville.”

Like Superman, his comrades have also been accused of having only American interests at heart: Wonder Woman normally wears a variation of the American flag as her costume and the Justice League of America leaves little mystery as to their main alliance. But the superheros’ impulses to serve the world beyond the United States is also evident: The Justice League went international for a few years and opened a Justice League Europe division. In the past, Green Lantern has declared himself protector of the entire Earth and the Milky Way galaxy, not just the United States. Over at Marvel, Captain America has gone as far as giving up his star-spangled suit when he felt disenfranchised by the Watergate scandal.


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