Truth, Justice & the American Way
According to Zack Snyder
On this fourth of July, I will take two seconds from being lazy and gluttonous (The preferred celebratory method of Independence Day) and thank God for the United States of America. I take a look around the world and, with the exception of Hawaii, there is no other country I would rather live. #mefailgeographythatsunpossible
Recently, I watched the Man of Steel, and for the most part, I liked it. But what I like about Superman is the American spirit he embodies– Truth, Justice, and the American Way. Notice that Truth and Justice are before the American Way.
It is my observation these days that being a proud American is, at the very best, myopic and arrogant. To the self-enlightened, every other country is a better place than the United States. Oddly enough, I don’t see a country like ours. This mindset is an equal opportunity annoyance and Christianity is no exception. Too many believers, when they think about America, they see greed while others suffer in need. While that may be true at times, I strained to find another country for a better example, The self-enlightened will have at the ready a handful of countries that are more compassionate, less greedy, and (most important of all) much cooler. What I find most amusing is that none of these countries are so great as to compel the self-enlightened to actually move there. To them, their notion of patriotic pride is to remain in a country they manifestly do not like and preach to the ignorant what dopes they are for actually having pride in this country. What this attitude reveals is not how they prefer other countries to the United States, but their preference to their own renown.
And nothing embodies this presumptuous notion of pseudo-intellectualism and self-enlightenment than Zack Snyder, the director of the Man of Steel. In an interview with BBC Radio 4, Snyder said:
“He [Superman] has no choice but to become global… That literally has to happen. But for me I was really interested in – and maybe it’s because Barack Obama’s president now – it’s okay for Superman to be American.”
All it would take Doctor Sigmoid Freud is two minutes to deduce that Zack Snyder really means is that, “I [Zack Snyder] have no choice but to become global… That literally has to happen. But for me I was really interested in – and maybe it’s because Barack Obama’s president now – it’s okay for ME to be American.”
Immediately this brought to mind the scene from the movie, The Patriot. Jean Villeneuve is arming the militia that will engage the Red Coats for the cause of freedom. Jay Arlen Jones‘ character, Occam , is a slave fighting for his freedom. Villeneuve hands him a musket and Donal Logue‘s character Dan Scott (Channeling the spirit of director Zach Synder) objects to arming a slave:
Dan Scott (Donal Logue): I don’t know about you, but I don’t like the idea giving muskets to slaves.
Jean Villeneuve (Tchéky Karyo): Your sense of freedom is as pale as your skin.
According to Snyder, being an American is dependent on the President of the United States. Now, I am pretty far removed from the American Revolution, but I am sure that one of the squabbles the American rebels had against the Crown… was the actual Crown. We were an independent people who bowed to no man. Now, after some two hundred odd years later, Snyder completely reverses what it means to be an American by exchanging his liberty for a master.
At the risk of belaboring the obvious, being proud of one’s country should not emanate from the president but from the truth that “…all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed…”
And that’s what makes America so unique. Regardless of your interpretation of Liberty, this country is founded on Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. Other than contemporary Egypt, where else can one find such a radical notion. (#currenteventsfail) True, you might not particularly like any president at any particular time, but at the end of the day, my allegiance, after the Lord, is to a certain set of principles that happen to embody the United States of America. Thankfully, the fictional American character known as Superman has a more genuine sense of what it means to be an American than the non-fictional American director, Zack Snyder.