In the past two years I’ve gotten REALLY into super heroes. It quite obviously is related to the dawning of the renaissance of superhero stories on TV and the big screen, but I’ve always been a fan of the genre. I remember watching the 1978 Superman and the Tim Burton/Joel Schumacher Batman films with my dad and one of my favorite tv shows growing up was The Justice League on Cartoon Network.
Unfortunately, I still haven’t gotten huge into the comics side of things. They’re a little cost prohibitive for me at the moment but any chance I get to go to a bookstore/comic store I pick up whatever looks good and take a peak. Someday, when I’m worth billions as a teacher, I’ll read more comic books.
I like superhero stories because they give me hope. For the most part, superheroes tend to give people the benefit of the doubt. They think that the world, and people in general, are something worth saving. Even when they are repeatedly facing the worst humanity as to offer, they don’t just give up and go home. To these men and women (and sometimes children), not using their powers for the betterment of society is as criminal as the acts they aim to stop.
I think one of the real reasons this appeals to me is because I’m a teacher. As a teacher, every day is a struggle. I’ve got students who will choose not to work, be offended that I offer to help them, or ignore me entirely. I have to come in with every day as a new day. If I take the actions of students from previous days personally, I’d certainly never succeed. Instead, I always have to look for the best in them. They need my help to cultivate their strengths and address their weaknesses. If I were to ever give up on them I would be committing an act more criminal than most of what they do to me. It can be hard to find hope in a situation like that and so, I need the example of superheroes to help get me through my days. Even if they are fictional characters.
We tell stories for a reason. They teach us lessons, they spread information, and they are the birthing points of our hopes and dreams. I hope that my actions as a teacher are making a difference in the lives of my students. I dream of a better life for them and for the world around them. No matter what happens, I will continue to feel this way. Dum spiro, spero. While I breath, I hope.