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  #1  
Old 07-26-2013, 11:14 AM
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Default How Would The U.S Government Deal With a Superhero?

Growing up I believe at some point every one of us has thought how cool it would be to be a superhero. We admire them, want to grow up just like them, we want the powers and the ability to just feel like a good guy. However, the one question the one question that needs addressing is how would a government and in this case weíll say the United States government respond to an everyday superhero? Now for argument sake Iíll not make this superhero have any particular powers and for now Iíll say there is only one superhero who is doing typical superhero activities such as helping catch criminals, aiding when disasters arise, etc.

Personally I feel that the U.S government would not take kindly to the creation of a Superhero. Now this may seem surprising considering in theory our government wants nothing but the best for us however the legal ramifications of a Superhero could be huge. As we have seen throughout time a Superhero typically launches a miniature ďassaultĒ on a given villain before making sure they are incapacitated and canít fight. However, in legal terms is this not assault? Is this not an attack on personal rights considering the superhero is attacking firstly without authorization and secondly without evidence not to mention that this superhero would most likely not be registered as an actual authority figure in the U.S government? Now this leads to the initial question how would the government react to such an action. Would they swoop in and grant special authoritative rights to this superhero or could the superhero be chastised for in theory breaking the laws of the country?

Personally I think the U.S government would initially be grateful for a superhero however thereís always going to be those who preach that if weíre made equal then we should all have equal laws. Would the government try and restrict this superhero into doing only what they ask of him? As seen in Marvel Comics with the Mutant Registration Act this is what the government wanted and is something that caused a civil war amongst mutants. Now I realize in this scenario there would only be one superhero but should the government actually be allowed to control someone who is granted special gifts. I ask all these hypothetical questions because I donít have answers, clearly in comics and in real life restricting the sovereignty of a human being causes indisputable conflict. Clearly having to register with a government and them controlling when you could use your powers would be a controversial subject and something that I feel would be greatly debated. Also as seen mentioned before in comics what if someone doesnít want to be saved? Last year on a vacation in the Bahamas I aided in a situation where someone was drowning in the water and the oddity of the situation was having to ask can I save you? Can I touch you? Would the government allow someone to have full control over if someone should be saved? Clearly the answer most would say is sure a superhero should be able to save. Iím not quite certain of that either.

Clearly, when dealing with superheroes itís not cookie cutter clear what a government would do. Should the superhero become a military weapon, a sovereign protector, or a government controlled agent? All of these could be argued for or argued against and I donít think thereís a clear answer. But for sure there are many opinions and Iím curious as to what is yours?
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Old 07-26-2013, 11:39 AM
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If a superhero were real the U.S. government would certainly try to take it out no question about it. Now the logical answer would be work with it to make the world a better place but it's the U.S. government we are talking about. If lets say Superman existed they would see him as a possible threat to their country and would try and find a way to take him out. Superman is more powerful than they are (U.S. government can't have that) and they would find some reason why he would need to be stopped.

It all comes down to this: If the U.S. government doesn't have absolute control over the super hero then in their mind the super hero could eventually become a super villain and be a threat to their way of life. If there is one thing the U.S. government doesn't like its something that has more power than them and they can't do anything about it, a lot could happen in their eyes (which is theoretically possible in this super heroes are possible universe) that could cause issues, it may not even be the super hero. They could simply be afraid that although the super hero means well he could bring destruction with him. Wherever there's a super hero there's often a villain not far behind.

The U.S. government (nor anyone) can't understand a Super Hero and most fear what they don't understand.
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  #3  
Old 07-26-2013, 12:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deanerandterry View Post
If a superhero were real the U.S. government would certainly try to take it out no question about it. Now the logical answer would be work with it to make the world a better place but it's the U.S. government we are talking about. If lets say Superman existed they would see him as a possible threat to their country and would try and find a way to take him out. Superman is more powerful than they are (U.S. government can't have that) and they would find some reason why he would need to be stopped.
I entirely agree with this. I feel something that the U.S government deems more powerful than itself would be eliminated. Now my follow up question to this is what would the public either know about this and what would the public opinion be. Clearly under this scenario the hero's rights have been repressed and understandably the American government's ability to control media would come into play. But let's say word got out I could only imagine what would happen.

Quote:
It all comes down to this: If the U.S. government doesn't have absolute control over the super hero then in their mind the super hero could eventually become a super villain and be a threat to their way of life. If there is one thing the U.S. government doesn't like its something that has more power than them and they can't do anything about it, a lot could happen in their eyes (which is theoretically possible in this super heroes are possible universe) that could cause issues, it may not even be the super hero. They could simply be afraid that although the super hero means well he could bring destruction with him. Wherever there's a super hero there's often a villain not far behind.
This is the point I was curious if someone would bring up. Whilst always super villains come with a super hero wouldn't the government you think be helping to create a villain out of the super hero by subjugating the hero? I have no doubt they would do this but it just doesn't seem like a logical course of action to me in the grand scheme. Why try preventing bad by punishing the good?

Quote:
The U.S. government (nor anyone) can't understand a Super Hero and most fear what they don't understand.
True and this is where there is potentially various scenarios on the hypothetical what would happen. Clearly if the super hero was alright with being subservient to the government I think it would all be okay however if the government wanted them to join them and the hero didn't like that (like Captain America in the civil war storyline) then conflict emerges. Also option 3, if the government tries to eradicate the hero then once again I fee this causes more conflict.

Regardless I think we both firmly agree that the government would not handle a "super" hero well.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:48 PM
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The government wouldn't allow most superheroes to even get started.

Superman's spaceship would've been tracked and intercepted, and he'd have been captured as an infant. The government would have studied him and likely killed in the process. If he survived to adulthood, the nature of his imprisonment would keep him from absorbing solar radiation, and if he ever did escape or otherwise see the light of day, he'd be a fugitive. He'd lack the Kent's nurturing, and would undoubtedly spell doom for mankind unless his weakness to Kryptonite was discovered and exploited.

In the case of mythical heroes like Thor, Aquaman, or Wonder Woman, the government would in all likelihood have pre-existing treaties with their respective realms. That being the case, the minute any of their citizens went rogue and started interfering with human affairs, that hero's respective people would hem them up before they got away with too much.

A human vigilante with access to military-grade weapons and equipment, such as Iron Man, Batman, or The Punisher, would be brought down swiftly and lethally. Odds are Tony Stark and Bruce Wayne would be under surveillance all of their adult lives and would be killed before they even got a chance to put on a mask.

Homegrown superhumans, like mutants or Spider-Man, would be captured, quarantined, and studied. If they were compliant, they'd be used as weapons; if not, they'd be killed. One such as The Hulk would be contained while in his human form, and likely kept under sedation for his entire life.

So, to go along with what deaner said, the government would seek to control any potential superhero, exploiting the ones that they could and eliminating the ones that they couldn't.
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Old 07-26-2013, 04:33 PM
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The government would react in much the same way most people would. Initially, it would start out with a great deal of intrigue as to who the person is and what their overall motives are. People would be talking about this person constantly, partially based on what this person has done. If it was just someone in some colorful outfit making some grandiose statement, I don't think it'd get much of a response. After all, this is the age of YouTube and social media. However, if this person revealed himself/herself by foiling some sort crime or saving people's lives in which a lot of witnesses saw what happened, that would generate a lot of immediate attention.

If this person kept it up and more people kept coming forward, possibly with footage of what he/she is doing, it'll lead to even more intrigue. If this person had some superhuman abilities and what they were could indicate how much the government as a whole would care. For instance, even if the powers are something basic like superhuman strength & durability; the government would be VERY interested in who this person is, where he/she comes from and how they came by these powers. Why? For one thing, they'd want to know if there are any more people like this one and, if so, how many and if he/she knows where they are. Such people could be thought of as a threat to national security. If the process by which this person gained his/her powers could be duplicated, then you'd have high level politicians and military personnel licking their chops. After all, the thought of having a military populated with soldiers who can withstand high caliber bullets without injury and lift cars above their heads would is the wet dream of any number of high ranking officials within the government.

Now, refusal to cooperate with the government by this person would result in him/her being branded some sort of outlaw, a threat to national security and any number of things. After all, anything that Uncle Sam doesn't fully understand or have under his thumb is generally thought of as a threat to national security. At the same time, though, I'd personally have to think that they MIGHT be onto something with it. Refusal to tell the world anything about himself/herself will only lead to increased feelings of mistrust and paranoia among the American people. The government wouldn't have to resort to propaganda because people would start to form their own conclusions. After all, for all they know, this person could be a terrorist. This person could also just be someone trying to do some good in the world. But how can anyone truly know?

On top of that, you'd have government officials on local levels pissing and moaning about vigilante justice because it tosses a major monkey wrench into criminal proceedings After all, superhumans weren't thought of when the Founding Fathers drafted the Constitution, nor were they thought of when subsequent laws on a national & state level have been passed over the centuries. If Superman was able to use his super hearing to overhear a conversation in which a mobster discusses the details of a murder he committed while playing poker with a bunch of other mobsters, it's inadmissible. Batman taking it upon himself to stakeout a suspected hideout, tap the phones of said hideout, break in & collect incriminating evidence, any first year law student could get everything thrown out of court. Why? Because Bats isn't a police officer, nor does he follow the regulations that bind all police officers. However, acting as an agent of the police in apprehending criminals or gathering evidence against them is a violation of any number of Constitutional statutes.

In the real world, I'm afraid there's no real room for superheroes.
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  #6  
Old 07-28-2013, 10:02 PM
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Honestly, I don't think the government would be too concerned about just one person with seemingly unstoppable human strengths. After all, America's the country that actually has nuclear weapons [yet bullies others who want to make their own for safety]. What's to say they don't already have technology that can combat against a supposed super human?

I think a better question would be what would happen when that super hero gains an enemy, or even what happens when more show up with super powers. One person can be stopped, and tested on. But multiple people, and even a fight between them where our safety can be in danger, that would cause anybody to fear the abnormal.

But then again, I strongly believe that America already has technology to build their own super army anyways and are just waiting for the right reason to bring it out... or for testing stages to be fully completed.
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