A “Kick-Ass” Satire of Rich Hoffman: Living authentically–against the current.

I have a lot of readers and obviously the kids who made the video below were satirically bringing their perspective to my content and life as viewed from their California neighborhood culture.  Their comedy skit against bullwhip superheroes also looks to be shaped by the movie Kick-Ass 2 which wasn’t nearly as good as the first one—but did make some good points.  My novel The Symposium of Justice was a work of philosophy written at a fairly young age molded after my personal experiences with politics and bullwhips during the 1990s.  In those years I was in my twenties and knew what I thought about things, but couldn’t yet understand why just because there wasn’t enough contextual information.  About a year ago I wrote an article titled Taking the Mask off Once Again, (CLICK HERE TO REVIEW,) which put a kind of end cap on that period from my twenties to current—which essentially came to a similar conclusion as the ending of Kick-Ass 2—superhereos aren’t needed on movie screens and behind crazy costumes and masks as much as they are in real life.  Fictional characters are fun for telling stories but the world is in desperate need of real life people who are willing to do heroic things without a mask of any kind—whether the mask is literature, an entertainment personality, or a literal costumed avenger.

From the culture of young people taught to not have any values or a code of ethics I’m sure a lot of the things I do seem to them the way they were presented in that video—they cited a Midwestern lifestyle, a grandfather’s bullwhip, and the desire to save America by using it in their plot.  They are products of public school peer pressure shaped by the politics of our day—which is crumbling in virtually every social category.  Of course they hold the belief that America doesn’t need a bullwhip wielding superhero from the Midwest—because they don’t yet see the crises before them.

After I wrote The Symposium of Justice I didn’t feel comfortable performing the normal role of author.  Scholarly pursuits centered on philosophy were a pretty new concept for me and wasn’t exactly the direction I thought my life should go.  I was used to performing actual physical feats, and doing things that were actually very dangerous.  So it felt strange to write about things as opposed to doing things.  In my neighborhood—bad things were happening—and the lag period between books was just too great to solve problems in real-time.  When presented with those kinds of problems a person should use every skill they have to solve problems.  The results often mean the revelation at the ending of Kick-Ass 2—that the world needs real people to do extraordinary things and to do it without the concealment of a mask.

As an author of a couple of books now and using this blog site to tackle problems in real-time instead of the long publication periods it takes to move a novel through the normal process of going to print most of what I have written can be confirmed by some real life experience.  I have never been satisfied telling stories or providing content without experience lending perspective to my work.  And to get experience you have to do things—as a person.  Watching that satirical video I can’t help but feel sorry for those kids—like most young people they are finishing a long career of public school education shaped by a statist government and they believe they have the tools of assessment needed to enter the world.  But they don’t—instead they will travel through the normal cycle that most people go through, they will start their lives voting for people like Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton (if they vote at all).  They will then support all the liberal causes, “Global Warming,” economic socialism, gay rights over traditional marriage, and collective value over individual merit.  By the time they hit their late 20s and early 30s they’ll discover that to have children of their own—they’ll become more conservative.  At that time they will often support a presidential candidate like Mitt Romney (soft Republican), they’ll start becoming frustrated with larger government once they see their taxes increase once they purchase a home, and they’ll start thinking like a Republican after cutting grass in their own yards each week.  They’ll spend their lives trying to make their bosses happy, will stare at their high school senior yearbooks wondering where all their friends went and will discover that they now have resentful teenagers who do not show respect for them during their 40s and 50s.  The kids of course will be angry at their parents for not providing a good role model as their parents will spend most of their lives as social boot-lickers instead of admirable parents, and homeowners.  During their late fifties their children will reconcile with them as those young people then realize that their liberal educations and salty outlook on life has not prepared them for the needs of their individual lives—and the parent and child will likely sit in a restaurant embracing each other on how mysterious life is and how screwed up their preparation for it was.  In their 60s the parent will likely then become a real conservative who will want to see the world they are leaving behind restored in some fashion to what it was when they were children because they see how detrimental everything has become during their lifespan—and they will at that point regret it—hoping to improve that life while they still live.  During their 70s and 80s those parents will find themselves abandoned by their children, overlooked by their grandchildren, and completely despondent to their great-grandchildren.  They’ll watch in frustration as the world of politics spirals out of control in spite of all their efforts and the last days of their lives will shrivel away into oblivion.  Not long after, nobody will visit their grave sites and history will forget them.

That cycle is a standard one for anybody who follows the shaped life of a statist government where the service and attention of that entity takes precedence over individuality.  There is no other ending for most of the people in our society—who follow that path.  My hope has been to maybe change the lives of a few so that such a miserable existence could be avoided and I use the skills I have in all their capacity to perform that task.  The kids who made that video have no other path in their life but the one described above they will live it nearly word for word and there is nothing I or anybody else can do to help them.  They are simply too far gone.  Even in comedy, much about reality is revealed.  Nothing is just a joke—everything has a cost associated with it—and you can’t cheat life without cheating yourself in some fashion.

Recently I told a bit of the story of the movie Bronco Billy by Clint Eastwood and for me, it taught me early on that people only get one chance to live their unique life the way they see fit.  That choice may run counter to the culture of society—but the goal is to be authentic to your individuality—and to not yield to the social pressure of conformity.  I made my choice long ago to live an authentically personal life in spite of the social pressures to serve a bind system led by sightless bureaucrats.  I have lent my support to many causes of the day in real life, a spokesman against taxes, Tea Party groups, talk radio, business,   and countless other endeavors—but I have never stopped being who I uniquely am even as those movements have ebbed and flowed.  And it always comes back around to the term “Justice Comes from the Crack of a Whip” from The Symposium of Justice.  In that novel the justice that most of us seek does not come from the laws of politicians, it comes from our own personal authenticity and those destinations can only be found by living life honestly even when the currents of civilization seem opposed to the task.  To be the last living things left on a receding beach, you have to stand against the current because then and only then—will you discover what was always hidden from view.  I communicated what I saw in my novel but felt I needed to dig deeper and to do that—it required real physical action instead of just observation to discover the concealment that holds many of life’s real answers.   And a tool for getting at those answers can be obtained with a bullwhip if you know how to use them.  A mask isn’t required.

Even though those kids thought they were making a satire of Kick-Ass at my expense, they obviously missed the point of the movie.  But that doesn’t surprise me.  It won’t hit them for another 25 years but eventually they will look at how they saw the world now and regret it.  They’ll also learn that they were woefully wrong—America does need such a hero and that even though they changed the title to avoid direct slander “The Crack of Justice” the proper way to always frame the situation is that “JUSTICE COMES WITH THE CRACK OF A WHIP”—because it does.

Rich Hoffman www.OVERMANWARRIOR.com