I call these crisis “the Big Three Evils.”
We must oppose them without hesitation nor excuses!
Otherwise we’re worthless.
While I type and you read people are being brutalized who don’t have to be; are hungry literally surrounded by food and without shelter in the shadow of sorrounding structures???
Such avoidable misery puts the lie to arrogant claims that humanity is so advanced. Creative activists in the “real life superhero ” ( RLSH ); extreme altruist ( X ALT ) and citizen patrol ( CP ) communities have made opposing the Big Three Evils their industry standard.
Violent crime is the visible destruction of what happens quietly regarding hunger and homelessness. Notice sirens wail and flashing lights regarding violence but none upon discovering empty stomachs with no roof overhead?
Creative activists role is to spotlight the Big Three; help them on our own and rally citizens into the greatest potential mass movement possible: arresting violent crime; hunger and homelessness until they cease to exist.
High flown rhetoric? Perhaps. But stopping the Big Three Evils isn’t impossible. The micro-good creative activists accomplish on budgets infinitely less than those of the Department of Health and Human Services or USDA is daily proof.
More than any terror cell or rogue nation the Big Three Evils of brutality; hunger and homelessness test assumptions about being co-called caring human beings.
Every violence victim; hunger victim and homelessness victim are points on the Cosmic Scoreboard for the Big Three Evils.
Each small act reducing the Big Three Evils counts on the Cosmic Scoreboard too!
Suiting up and taking to the playing field of real life against the Big Three Evils is the only choice that makes sense!
This is what good Black men must Symbolically do to chocolate Klansmen–
knock them off their perch- with the police beside us!
I admit it: I’m a consciously “Black” activist under the “real life superhero ( RLSH )” name of Capt Black. Big surprise huh? LOL.
First, I’d like to say that the vast majority of the following is not my work. Delta, a fellow RLSH compiled this list and posted it on the message board in an effort to help newcomers answer the question “how do I get started?” Indeed, more experienced RLSHs have benefited from it as well! I found myself referring back to it while talking with others so often that I begged his permission to put this list on my blog for easier reference. The list began to grow as more and more people added their ideas (credits noted) and at this point, we have 31 ways to be a Hero Without Using Your Fists!
1. First things first. Take a first aid course. Be ready to help someone in an emergency situation. Don’t assume someone else will be able to do it.
2. Be a hero, donate blood. Better yet bring a friend. Can you imagine the publicity the Red Cross could get out of a photo of a half dozen RLSH at a drive?
3. Look for paint, not pain. Go on a graffiti patrol. You don’t necessarily have to get rid of it yourself. Document it and report it to the town/city officials. Some places, like the City of Boston has a special graffiti phone hotline.
4. Serve up kindness. Volunteer at a local soup kitchen or free community lunch. What could bring a smile to a downtrodden face more than a hot meal … having that meal served by a caped do-gooder of course.
5. Brown-bag it. Put together a meal in a paper bag, write “for the homeless” on it and leave it where a homeless person can find it. (credit to Knight Hood)
6. Get around. Walk around your neighborhood in order to get to know your neighbors. You can find out who needs what kinds of help and meet people who might be able to help in the future.
7. Be a “Super Scout”. Aim to do one good dead every day. It could be as small as holding a door open for someone or returning an empty grocery cart to the store entrance.
8. Curb appeal. Offer a free lawn mow or snow removal for a neighbor who might have trouble doing it. You could also offer to sweep the walk or wash windows. If they want to reward you have them pay it forward.
9. This is a job for … Trash-man? 1. Get a garbage bag. 2. Go outside. 3. Pick up trash until you fill the bag. Picking-up trash is about the least glamorous thing I can think of, but it can still inspire others to be less apathetic.
10. Clean house. Go through your stuff and set aside anything you don’t really need or want anymore. Take it to a Salvation Army or other charity store and donate it. This one gives you a clean room and the feeling that you’ve done something good. Talk about win/win.
11. Cut back on the caffeine. Skip your coffee/soda habit for a week and give the money to a charity you believe in. You could also buy it and give it to someone who can’t afford it.
12. Go back for a second course. Take a CPR class. Go back to number 1 for the reasons.
13. Speak up! The next time you hear someone say something you know is just plain wrong, call them on it. Write a letter to the editor at your local paper to bring attention to a problem you see. You don’t need to wear a cape for this and, somehow, that seems more heroic to me.
14. Be prepared. Put together emergency preparedness packs for home and travel. Put aside a little extra for others. If you are ready for a disaster you can better help those that are not.
15. People watch. Visit these sites to see if you recognize a missing person. www.amw.com; www.namus.gov; www.missingkids.com. There are more sites if you look for them. (Rook’s note: I like posting these to my Facebook account and asking others to share. The heightened exposure will hopefully increase the chances of someone being found)
16. Get out the vote. If you are old enough to vote, VOTE. Encourage others to vote. Pass out literature showing how to register. Democracy works better if everyone participates.
17. Do the write thing. Everyone loves to get real mail. Write to someone who doesn’t get out much, an old friend or a member of the armed services. Every letter you send will brighten up someone’s day. Don’t forget about postcards.
18. Food, glorious food. Organize a food drive. It could be as small as your classroom or office. If you can go bigger try to get the whole school, company or place of worship involved.
19. Walk the walk. Many charities have walk-a-thons to raise money and awareness for their cause. Put on your best cape and most comfortable shoes and join in. Once again a crowd of RLSH will really get some notice for the cause.
20. Now you’re cooking. Make a meal for someone who can’t get out or has recently suffered a traumatic loss. If you don’t do the cooking at home it might be a nice gesture there too.
21. Will someone think of the children? You may still be young yourself but there is always someone younger. Visit a children’s ward, tutor someone, read stories at the library and/or be a mentor. Spending time with kids is a top way to prevent crime in the future.
22. Make a dog happy – Dig a fire hydrant out of the snow or cut the weeds back around one. The time it take someone to attach a hose in an emergency can make the difference in the loss of life and property. Heck, unclog a storm drain while you’re at it.
23. Go undercover – Join the local neighborhood watch in your secret identity. It’s a great way to get to know the area and its trouble spots. You may also get some training and possibly a recruit or two.
24. Sign up for amber alerts –Every set of eyes count. It doesn’t matter if they are behind a mask or not (Rook’s note: See #15 regarding Facebook).
25. Go ahead and jump – If you have a car make sure you have a set of jumper cables and know how to use them. (I keep a cheat sheet). Stow a few other emergency supplies in the trunk like a spare blanket, bottled water and some rope. You’d be amazed how many ways they can be useful.
26. Give of yourself – Sign up to be an organ donor. I know it’s a bit morbid to think about, but if the worst should happen you can still save a life or lives.
27. Be a good listener – Sometimes the biggest help we can be to someone is to be someone they can talk to when they are experiencing hardships. You don’t have to be a therapist to let someone open up about the things that are bothering them the most. It’s not necessary to try to “fix” their problems, just be that “hearing ear” that they need. (credit to The Muse at VisualAdjectives)
28. Go in feet first – Take water lifesaving training. You never know when you may have to dive in and save someone from drowning.
29. Say it with Flowers – Take flowers to a critical care or cancer ward. (credits to Kindrid and Rook)
30. Walk for Pennies – “You wouldn’t believe how much change gets dropped on the ground. While on a boring foot patrol I started picking up trash that turned into finding loose change all over. When I started looking I started finding more than I expected. This sparked the idea, once a week at the least, we should all go out and do a Penny Patrol, you can donate this money to The McDonald houses at any McD’s location or donate to any local cause you may have. You’ll be surprised how many quarters and dimes you will find while doing this.” (Credit to SupermanX of the Super Samaritan Society)
31. Oh, Shoot! – Get certified with firearms. It doesn’t matter if you do or don’t want to own or use one. Becoming certified gives you a grasp of what guns can do. It is an excellent idea to know what you are doing if the unthinkable ever happens. Think of it as knowing (and having a healthy respect for) your enemy.
I’ll update this as they become available. Many thanks to Delta for putting this together!
Social media. Back when I started doing this…you know I’d come home from patrol & Dino the Dino would rush the door & tackle me, I got curious after a few years if there were other guys who were doing the RLSH thing. I looked online & found about 8 guys who were. Neat.
Then Myspace came along & we could all communicate with each other which was even better and over time the 8 became 17 then 22 & so on.
Then forums came along, then Facebook. Yesterday we had my mom over for early Mothers day, then went to lady-heroes Nephews house to watch them while her sister had a night out & periodically thru out the night I’m trying to check Facebook because my phone is going “Ding” telling me people are posting about it instead of enjoying my family time because of some squabble with some idiot who literally lives on the other side of the continent from me who I’m never gonna meet, and who wouldn’t run his mouth at all if he was face to face with me anyway. This nonsense never cut into my patrol/event/charity time…but it does make me wonder how many peoples time it does cut into.
I deleted the damn thing. In the grand scheme of things…do you really care if I’m having Tostadas for lunch? I don’t care if you are. If you are a active RLSH…be active.
Be aware that you can get sucked up in those things & that takes you out of the actual game. I was fine before they existed…I’ll be fine now.
Maybe a whole lot of you weren’t aware of this, but RLSH forums used to be different than they tend to be at this particular moment in time. There is a current upheaval.
Some of us have seen the hey-day of years ago and frankly, this ain’t it. I’m not meaning to criticize and believe me, I couldn’t do better and I’m in regret for not living up to my own part as a Moderator in a previous forum when I said I would.
I failed. And here’s what’s happened as a partial result.
We seem to be seeing an evolution of ALL of the RLSH forums at the same exact time.
It’s come to my notice because of some dissatisfaction among some of my elder RLSH friends and now I’m being contacted by newer Real-Life Superheroes asking, “Where are the cool forums?” And I guide them to where I can, including here at www.reallifesuperheroes.org. But this is not a self-promotional rant. Not at all.
Okay, I think I know the reason “the times, they are a’ changing.”
Facebook. That’s how we’re now communicating and networking among RLSHs and also our “civilian” friends. And that’s very incredibly awesome. But not good enough.
Wonderful, but take it for what it’s worth. It doesn’t fill our needs. Not at all, if you’re a Real-Life Superhero. Fine if you “Like” us, but if you’re actually one of us, it leaves us lacking support from our specifically-RLSH friends and even our detractors who we could be on a conversational level with. But we’re not. Not really. Not on facebook. It’s really just sort of throwing comments out there and there’s little, if any discussion.
RLSH forums are also steering to a “this is just information and not conversational” and frankly, I think any kind of exclusiveness if going to kill a forum.
My former favorite forum of Heroes Network was in my opinion, killed by being just a bit more exclusive by membership requirements. Yes, the Admins were INCREDIBLY awesome (Love ya both!), but we never really got the nut-jobs or the whackos to debate with to make the efficiently-run forum truly interesting enough to visit often. I’m truly not criticizing the folks who ran it. I just wonder if it wouldn’t have been more active if it was a bit more loose. I appreciate the dedication, hard work and the concept, regardless.
I loved the idea. It was well-run and we’ve never seen anything quite like it before. Who knew that if you only got the “best and tried and true people” (and that I would be lucky enough to be in that group) into it, that they’d be of little interest and have little to talk about? I was honored to have counted myself among that number. But I know how boring I can be. Go figure.
Back to the “No Privacy” thing…
If you’re a Real-Life Superhero: You’re getting back from a patrol, hot and sweaty, or maybe cold and chilled and you want to talk some things out with someone on your level, who can understand or assume what your night or day might have been like. You want to avoid all the chit-chat BS. Or maybe you need to find some diversion among friends who understand what we do. You don’t want to be confronted by a random fb friend showing all of his friends his favorite Youtube video of a random band.
They don’t know what you did that night. -Or couldn’t prevent being done.
You want to commiserate and relate… make inside jokes and maybe kid around with your best RLSH friend who is also online, but in front of your other friends so that they can see how much mutual respect you have for each other to treat them like you do.
You need an RLSH private area.
No media AT ALL. Few, if any, kind “civilians” (No disrespect intended, My Friends.) Where we can just be among ourselves and sort of let down our guard and be our occasional asshole-selves and enjoy those moments with people who also have done the stupid things we’ve done. -(“Dude, don’t hand the guy an ice-cold Pepsi in a blizzard. Wouldn’t a hot coffee been a better idea? You’re such an A-hole, Geist ;)”)
Facebook is absolutely a wonderful thing. And media-friendly forums ABOUT Real-Life Superheros are a wonderful thing.
But if people with secret identities can’t have a place where, as a somewhat exclusive group can’t talk in privacy, then what’s the point of a forum FOR RLSHs?
I might for instance, want to give Razorhawk a hard time about his white and black costume concept, I might want to kid Superhero about his constant smile, I might want to wonder outloud why Watchman is never actually on the forums, and give a hard time to my Buddy Blue for thinking I’m not thinking of him. These are all dear friends of mine. And yeah, I want to give them some kidding. Can I do that in front of the world without you getting the wrong ideas? Not really.
But also, and more importantly, we need a place where RLSHs can speak of issues out of the media eye. I mean, we need to talk about potential press coverage and whether “this or that” might be a good idea, based partially upon our friends’ opinions. Or whether “this or that” was the right approach on a patrol we just had.
“What would you have done? I’m such an F-up. How can I do better next time?”
Over the years, some incredibly private issues have been brought up from our number of RLSH friends. Some of them even put to group discussions. Granted, I’m thinking back to when there were fifty of us online and not 750 or whatever. But there are still some things that I would like to hear about or talk about that are JUST private and among like-minded friends. No offense…
That’s just my take on the current trends.
All My Best,