Heroes Among Us

I think that the reason that I love Marvel superhero movies, as fanatically as I do, is that they feed into my deep seated need to believe that there are still real heroes, in our world.

It’s actually not all that hard to believe, when I can take inspiration from such pillars of strength in standing for justice as Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Martin Luther King, (ya, I know he’s dead) Bob Mueller and Colin kaepernick.

I just wish that we had more such heroes, in this day and age. But maybe I’m looking at life all wrong. …. Maybe others of you are too, and want a solution. I think I have one, for you. Here’s the crux of it:

Maybe…….. if you want to SEE a hero,...... you have to BE a hero.

I’m going to assume that I’m not being read by anyone that can fly, shoot lasers out of their eyes, or control the weather, like Storm. (X-Men). So you’re probably wondering at this point:

“What can I do”?

Here’s my answer:

SOMETHING.

You. Can do. SOMETHING.

You can pick any cause you like, and start where you are and you will be DOING ……...SOMETHING.

If you are fighting to reunite families, separated at the border, then you are DOING SOMETHING.

If you are working to get the vote out with postcards or phone calls or text messages, then you are DOING SOMETHING.

If you are signing or passing petitions to protect nature from 45’s plans to drill or develop, then you are DOING SOMETHING.

If you are signing or passing petitions to protect wild animals from roll backs of trophy hunting bans, (also signed off on by 45) then you are DOING SOMETHING.

If you are donating to a good cause with either time or money, then you are DOING SOMETHING.

If you are DOING SOMETHING……..then ……..

YOU’RE MY HERO.

Now, maybe there isn’t much reward in being my hero, but you have to keep in mind, that you’re always touching the lives of others.

So here is your mission, Mr. Phelps, should you choose to accept it:

Let out your inner hero.

You already are one, in a million little ways. Everyone is, and sometimes they even know it. Most of the time our little heroic deeds go unnoticed, even by us. We hold a door for someone, or we smile at them, when they’re having a hard day. Sometimes a smile is everything to that person, in that moment. Sometimes we come up with those last few pennies to pay for the coffee of the person in front of us that was in a hurry and out of change, and didn’t get to have breakfast……..

These things are easy to do, and even so, they can mean the world to the reciprocant of your kindness.

Sometimes heroics are a bit trickier. Sometimes it requires stepping into a contentious situation. Sometimes it means being witness (with your cell phone camera running) to police or privileged white people being abusive. Sometimes it means simply striking up a conversation with someone who is being verbally abused, in order to help them to ignore the abuser. (A fight takes TWO parties).

I know that if you are reading this, then you are well educated, and well educated people understand the difference between heroes and zeroes; between justice and injustice. I know that you can easily recognize injustice, when you see it.

When you SEE injustice is the perfect time to let out your inner hero.

Sadly, we can no longer rely on the ones that we used to call heroes- our police officers- to adhere to the law, much less to practice professionalism and common decency. Some of them still do, but more and more, it’s becoming dangerous to expect it.

Since we can’t rely on our civil servants to be the heroes that they used to be, to us, we have to step into that role, ourselves. We have to:

Fight for truth, justice, and the American way.

Protect nature.

Protect each other.

Insist on fair democracy and the sanctity of the polling booths and integrity of our elections.

Ensure that our leaders are fit to lead:

Honest and transparent (ref. 45’s taxes, etc.)

Desirous of the best for our country and her people

Clear thinking and far sighted in our dealings with other countries as well as with our own

Not senile

Not racist, bigoted or narcissistic

Understand the Constitution and the political processes

Have a record of some sort of service to their country

Know that they will be summarily removed from office for writing or attempting to enforce any policy harmful to any subgroup of people other than sanctions against countries that act against us or their own people in a tyrannical manner.

It’s going to take heroes (like us) to rescue our foundering democracy from the clutches of the greed and corruption that currently controls and infests it. It’s going to take heroes (like us) to draw the poison out of the wounds of our democracy and breathe new life into it.

Even once we’ve done that, our democracy will have to be coached and coaxed and maybe even coerced into proving to the world, the success of its rehabilitation, and its commitment to preventing this kind of horror story from ever happening again.

It’s going to be a nearly impossible task, but we’re heroes. Heroes do the impossible, every day. We even stay classy, as we do it, and come out on top. Even when we hit a bump in our path as we’re being heroes, we get up and go on being heroic and classy, in order to get the job done, because we know that we’re not alone in our task, and that future generations depend on our getting it done.

We may do our heroes’ work enshrouded in the anonymity of a phone line, or a mailbox. (That’s a little reminder to vote and to remind your friends to vote). We may do it out on the street, for everyone to see and hear, or we may do it in the celebrity spotlight, like LeBron James, Jimmy Kimmel, Rachel Maddow, and Trevor Noah, and ever guest that they interview.

Opportunities to be heroic surround us, every minute of every day. Let out your inner hero. (S)he will find that opportunity and guide you in the right direction. All you have to do is pick a cause, and DO SOMETHING.

Activist, Author, Secular Humanist, National of California, Wife, Mom, Daughter