Man of Steel: Christopher Reeve 1952-2004 | PopMatters Film Feature
So I'm not paying attention for a week or two and Superman dies. Honestly I'm not much of one for the whole inspirational story blah blah blah... crap. I guess all that stuff gets kind of soppy after a while. Like we decide someone is special because they're disabled, and then anything they do is like that much greater. Obviously stuff is harder for them, and a quadriplegic lifting a finger would be a huge accomplishment as compared to me lifting a finger which I'm doing easily while I type this.
But I spent most of my life trying to keep people from seeing me different after they learn about my childhood. People always thought that I must be special because I had a rough childhood: "you must be so strong" "I can't believe how great you are after all you've been through." etc.
Suffering doesn't make a person special or great and neither does survival. Anybody who valued their life would fight terrible odds to survive, and merely the belief that there may be brighter days ahead can take people through extreme amounts of suffering. This isn't greatness (nor is it a bad thing) it is just part of being human.
Christopher Reeve was different. He wasn't fighting to survive. He was fighting to better his life, and pushing the bounds of known science and medicine in the process.
Everyone says he was "heroic" and "inspirational." In a way I kind of feel like they are missing the point. Superman was a role, but Christopher Reeve's life wasn't. I can say something about him that is far more powerful than any role he may have filled for others as a "hero" or "inspiration."
If Christpher Reeve had lived long enough he would have walked again. In my book that makes him a pioneering transhumanist and he'll be missed.