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The Mutant Problem

Published: July 19, 2015




Jean-Paul Beaubier made more money after his Olympic career. That's saying a lot. He won four gold medals in skiing during the 2006 Winter Olympics for Canada. His leading-man good looks and confidence made him an endorsement superstar all over the world. In 2010, he won eight golds, making him a record-breaker and a national hero. His positive X-gene test and the consequent stripping of all his medals very nearly turned Canada rabid. All the Canadian athletes skipped the closing ceremonies in protest.

Beaubier got his revenge when he turned his tragedy into gold through book deals. He used the revenues from that and the endorsements to create the multimodal athletic brand, Northstar, which is now only slightly less recognizable than Nike and Adidas. When he revealed he was also gay, he practically became Hollywood's god. With that fame came the arrogance. Or maybe it's always been there and now everyone can indulge him.

"You collect mutants." He made a statement, not a question.

No, I told him, I took pictures of mutants, normal pictures.

"We are not normal. It is insulting to say so. Normal is a double-sized cubicle for middle-management. We are gifted."

I must have coughed or something because he snorted and gesticulated.

"Do not look so. I am not a supremacist like Magneto. I simply do not see why there are such stifling laws for people born into greatness. Some are naturally powerful whether that be in athleticism, money, or business acumen. To deny them--us-- the means to achieve our potential is ignorant and economically inefficient.

So you disagree that mutants have unfair advantage say, in the sports field?

He smirked. "You Americans have a sports hero, a man who won very many medals in swimming for the 2004 Olympics. If I recall correctly, his body is strangely made to be almost perfect for the sport. And also, he and his family had money for training. Did he have unfair advantage?"


Introduction: The Mutant Problem

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The Mutant Problem

As a starving student, Peter Parker took a job photographing "the mutant problem." More than ten years later, his definition of "the problem" has changed.

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