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This bit really resonated: the central myth of their lives---retold and retold in their comic books, favorite novels and movies, and even in their video games---is that soon something will happen that will allow them to reveal their so far well-hidden awesomeness It's like the bit from "On the Rainy River" in The Things They Carried, which struck me as painfully true. If the stakes ever became high enough--if the evil were evil enough, if the good were good enough--I would simply tap a secret reservoir of courage that had been accumulating inside me over the years. Courage, I seemed to think, comes to us in finite quantities, like an inheritance, and by being frugal and stashing it away and letting it earn interest, we steadily increase our moral capital in preparation for that day when the account must be drawn down. It was a comforting theory. It dispensed with all those bothersome little acts of daily courage; it offered hope and grace to the repetitive coward; it justified the past while amortizing the future. I think this is why I liked Captain America so much. Steve Rogers doesn't get superpowers and then turn into a hero. He was already a courageous hero when he was just a stunted kid; all the superpowers did was allow his body to finally cash the checks his courage kept writing. Now that's what a hero should be.
It's getting to the point where, when a politician is rabidly homophobic, I just assume now that they're gay. It's become a standard item on my gaydar Ruben Bolling did a strip on "The New Gay Sterotype" a few years back which echoes your sentiments rather well.
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