We Can’t Wait for Wonder Woman to Save the World

BY ON June 19, 2017

wonder woman cartoon graphic with text "you are wonder mom"

This was written by Shaun Dakin, Moms Clean Air Force’s social media director:

Wonder Woman is a good movie. It is wonderful to see a woman as a superhero in a major summer blockbuster. It is equally amazing that Wonder Woman has surpassed $500 million worldwide and, according to Forbes, has another $100 – $150 million left in the tank in North America. Go Wonder Woman!

I’ve talked to many women – Moms who loved the movie and viewed the film with their daughters; some dressed up as mini Wonder Women. These Moms enthusiastically discussed how they waited a long time for a strong woman superhero, and how Wonder Woman is a perfect answer to the dearth of strong female superheroes.

Wonder Woman is fantastic. She’s an excellent role model for girls in a barren wasteland of male superheroes.

However, I believe that Wonder Woman also feeds into an American political narrative, one that began with the election of JFK – “If only we elected a political superhero, all our problems would disappear.”

The “superhero as politician” is the narrative that helped Obama get elected. But then allowed the majority of voters to walk away, thinking their work was complete. Even as Obama himself desperately attempted to communicate that voting for him was not going to be enough, voters did not listen.

Those voters thought by simply electing Obama, the world would magically change for the better. They surmised racism would be banished from our discourse. Putting trust in their “superhero”, they looked to him to save the economy and fix the climate crisis.

From Obama’s victory speech on June 3rd, 2008,

“…this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal; this was the moment when we ended a war and secured our nation and restored our image as the last, best hope on Earth.”

Then this happened…

In 2010, the Tea Party took power in Congress, while millions of Obama voters decided to stay home and not vote.

In my opinion, the superhero as politician is what elected Trump.

In reality, there is no political superhero.

There’s only us. You and me. We get to decide how to make the world a better place, every day.

Being a citizen is a 365 day job. What does this mean?

  • It means working with your local and state elected officials. (Do you know who they are?)
  • It means showing up to city hall meetings on the budget. (Sounds boring, right?)
  • It means going to school board meetings (Who has time for that?)
  • It means running for elected office yourself. Of course, you may not want to run for office. OK, how about running for your local city council, school board, planning board, advisory committee on greening up your town, etc..?

These are not always glamorous positions that land you on the cover of Time or Rolling Stone. But citizen advocacy works…and it might just make you a superhero in your community…and perhaps more importantly, in the eyes of your kids!

Get started HERE.

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TOPICS: Activism, Politics