"Anytime someone wants to get involved and help police, we see it as a good thing, so long as they don't work without police participation. We prefer people to be the eyes and ears of the police."
But what about the strange costumes?
"Well, fortunately, we're not the fashion police," states Silva.
So what is the payoff for dressing as a superhero and running through dark and dangerous alleyways in the moonlight? Slapjack says that the realization that he is trying to do something positive is his reward.
"Knowing that you are going out there and being proactive and helping makes you feel good about accomplishing something," says Slapjack. "My father always said, 'No matter how bad your life, no matter how hard, there is always someone a lot worse off than you are.' I always took that to heart, and use that as motivation to be better and do good."
"I just see myself as someone trying to make things better," agrees Recluse, "and I hope that people see me as that." As for Civitron, he says being a father is a reason he wants to make the world a better place.
"I'll be satisfied in the end if I'm just perceived as doing my part," he says, "contributing to society and making my community better. I like being real and living my truth."
For more information, visit the Web sites superheroesanonymous.com and reallifesuperheroes.org. Tea Krulos is a freelance writer from Milwaukee. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.