Okay... leaving my politics out of the equation... including the "American"-ness question.
Captain Craig wrote:
If a cape shows arrogance and a godlike disposition does it hold for other cape wearers? Is Zorro arrogant? Godlike? His cape serves 'no purpose'.
Sorry, but Zorro's cape serves two very important purposes. First, it provides concealment, in the sense that he can drift into the shadows, hold it over himself, and be harder to spot. More importantly, however, the cape is useful because
he's not godlike, because
he's only one man. One of his strengths is the ability to dazzle crowds and psych enemies out, and the cape is a big help in this regard.
Similar argument for Batman, gastrof. The cape is used for gliding, and psyching out enemies by exaggerating the threat.
Superman pretty much never needs to hide, and everyone knows how powerful he is, to the extent that no psyching out is needed. Cape-wise, then, there's no comparison, imo.
Other people have historically worn capes when not needed in any immediate practical sense - namely, kings. Thus, by wearing an unneeded cape, Supes casts himself as a king of sorts. And (and this is as far as I'll take the USA analogy), Americans have no kings.
Bottom line: would the humble, supportive Clark from Smallville
independently decide to wear a cape? I somehow doubt it.
I like this design; I think it's got the right idea.
Oh, and gastrof... I never claimed to be a big Supes fan.