Imagine a parallel universe very similar to ours, it’s timeline pracitcally identical… with one exception:
The birth of paranormals
THE DAWN OF CHANGE
The first documented paranormal was born May 10th, 1930. This marked the dawn of Human Evolutionary advancement, although it wasn’t dubbed so at the time. This child was the first of many that displayed odd abilities, often of trivial nature. Some could levitate tiny objects, others had exceptional hearing or sight, and some had physical “deformities” such as gills, pointed ears, three fingers, green skin, etc. The scientific community labeled these children as genetic anomalies, and thus became social pariahs and segregated throughout society. Out of spite, they were called Deviants by the general public and treated as a second class of citizen.
Needless to say, along with the civil rights movement of the 1960s, these Deviants also fought for their rights. So, when President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act, it prohibited discrimination of all kinds based on race, color, religion, national origin, and genetic differentiation. With the passing of the act, “deviants” preferred to be called paranormals as the former was degrading.
THE PARANORMAL REGISTRATION ACT
The next generation of children were born with powers that did not prove to be so… trivial. Some children were born with the ability to generate flames at will, while others had skin that could deflect high caliber rounds, and then others could read minds, walk through walls, or run at amazing speeds. The sentiment began to grow that if these children were left unchecked, they could become a threat to society.
Thus congress proposed the Paranormal Registration Act (PRA). This act would require all paranormals to register themselves with the government. Registered paranormals would undergo a full body analysis to determine any and all abilities they possess and would thereafter be monitored by the government to ensure public safety and national security. Failure to register would result in imprisonment and subsequent forced registration if apprehended. The proposing of this act garnered much protest by paranormal activist, arguing that this law was discriminatory against them and violated their civil rights. In the end, the act was vetoed on constitutional grounds by President Jimmy Carter on May 10th 1980, coincidentally on the 50 year anniversary of the first documented paranormal.
However, this event brought to light many concerns on the application of existing laws on paranormal abilities. For example, if a paranormal can see the future, is it considered insider trading if he plays the stock market? If one can read minds, is it an invasion of privacy? If one has super-speed or super-strength, does that exclude him or her from professional sports under the fair play clause? Many questions like these arose within the judicial system, and over time and through many court decisions, these questions were answered.
CRIME AND PUNISHMENT
As human nature would have it, some paranormals turned to a life of crime. Every criminal has their reason and paranormals were no different. These paranormal criminals were re-dubbed Deviants for their heinous crimes. However, just as some were drawn to crime, others were drawn to justice. Paranormals were beginning to understand that with great power came great responsibility, and were enlisting themselves in various law enforcement agencies. Then came that fateful day where the apprehension of a Deviant by the police was only made possible by the efforts of a paranormal officer within their ranks. This was the dawn of the 3rd generation of paranormals, where their abilities began to outclass conventional means of law enforcement. It was also a wake-up call for national security.
Realizing that crime was evolving alongside the human race, law enforcement everywhere needed to undergo an evolution as well. As paranormals were already within various segments of law enforcement, an initiative to restructure the balance of paranormal assets began. This restructuring ensured that every division in law enforcement had at least one paranormal; every police precinct, FBI division, military command, etc. These individuals were dubbed “Paradigms” and the initiative was called the Paradigm Shift.
As the power ante rose between the battle of good and evil, so did its ramifications. As Paradigms foiled the plans of Deviants, the Deviants began to ascertain leverage against the Paradigms by threatening those close to them. This lead to the retiring of some Paradigms for fear of their loved ones while others suffered great losses in the pursuit of justice. Thus arose the dilemma, continue to fight the good fight while sacrificing your personal life and the well being of those close to you, or cease fighting and let evil prevail.
THE AGE OF HEROES
This Catch-22 dawned the Age of Heroes. In the pursuit of justice, some paranormals decided to sacrifice the law rather than the well being of those close to them. Fear of joining law enforecement to maintain justice as Deviants could ascertain information about them and threaten those they love, these paranormals took the law into their own hands. Donning masks and pursuing Deviants, these paranormals combated the forces of evil. They were dubbed Vigilantes, and rightfully so as they were breaking the law. Although they were a force for good, under the scrutiny of law, they were just as guilty as the Deviants. As such, it is the Paradigms prerogative to apprehend Vigilantes and Deviants without discrimination. However, these Vigilantes are viewed as Heroes in the public eye. A shining force for good that is willing to go above and beyond to keep our world safe.