Same goes for Captain America, Wonder Woman, Spider-Man, Batman … Some thoughts from Gail Simone.
I was on Facebook and I came across a comment made by writer Gail Simone, who like many of us is sickened by the ugly bigotry and intolerance that’s oozed to the surface in the wake of the election this week (and during it as well). As a fan of superheroes since early childhood, as someone who identifies with characters who defend those who cannot defend themselves, I was deeply moved by her comments. So I asked Gail if we could post her comments here and she agreed. This was not something that she labored over for days or crafted in repeated drafts. This is just a top-of-her-head rumination. But it’s so eloquent, it stands on its own. — Dan
By GAIL SIMONE
I know this is my problem, and God knows, these characters belong to everyone, but I have to say… when I see people openly crowing about how people concerned for their lives and liberties in a hugely racist and volatile environment are being “crybabies,” it kills me to go back to their social-media pages and see Superman, Captain America and other great genre heroes as their avatars.
Seriously, holy shit, how do you grow up loving Superman and think bullying is OK?
How do you read X-Men your whole life and think hating your neighbors because they are different is just fine?
How do you see every Star Trek episode and be riddled with xenophobia?
How do you have those people as your heroes your whole life, and then spit on everything they try to teach us?
I realize this probably seems a little silly, when friends of mine are worried their marriages will be voided, their health care canceled, their families at risk of violence.
But it still bothers me. My one slim hope is that maybe someday, something Spider-Man or Optimus Prime or Luke Cage said will get through and find a spark. Maybe be a reminder that most of our great fictional heroes wouldn’t behave like this.
They save people, they help people. They fight for people.
Maybe Superman will detonate that for some, when the joke is over and realization sets in.
If that happens even a little, I can certainly live with that.