Is Superman a natural-born American citizen?
Is Superman a foundling? This was an issue that was hotly debated among friends during a recent social gathering. I made my position clear: The issue is open-ended because Superman’s storyline keeps on changing.
For instance, from my recollection of the movie starring the late Christopher Reeve, Superman (aka Clark Kent) had no citizenship. He was baby Kal-El, “rocketed” to Earth from planet Krypton by his parents Jor-El and Lara. He was found and adopted by a Kansas couple, Jonathan and Martha.
From Issue No. 1 of the fictional story of “The Man of Steel” (DC Comics), “planet Krypton is… a cold and emotionally sterile planet, an idea [John] Byrne borrowed from the 1978 film ‘Superman.’ Kal-El was not an infant sent from Krypton to Earth, rather, his fetus was placed in a ‘birthing matrix’ equipped with a rocket engine and Jor-El’s experimental warp drive, with Kal-El gestating during the trip to Earth. Once the rocket landed, Kal-El was fully ‘born’ on Earth. This also made him ‘born’ an American, a plot point that would be used in ‘Armageddon 2001,’ a DC Comics storyline which explored possible futures, one of which featured Superman becoming President of the United States.”
From the regular-version story, Superman was a foundling. In the “birthing-matrix” version story, he was a natural-born US citizen.
But another storyline says that Superman renounced his US citizenship while Clark Kent retained it.
The storylines of Superman indeed have been way too confusing and annoying to fans like me. Superman should be categorical about his citizenship. If he is considering the possibility of running for president of the United States, then he should once and for all prove that he is a natural-born American citizen, and spare his fans and foes from engaging in speculative games.
—REGINALD B. TAMAYO, assistant city council secretary, Marikina City
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