No Gay Marriage, Please. We’re DC Comics.

“Hi, Batwoman. I hear you like women. I prefer youthful male wards.”

Let me make it plain:  I don’t read Batwoman.   I’m not crazy about J.H. Williams’ art style.   I don’t read any DC Comics regularly.   I barely pay attention to what’s going on in comic books any more.

But I do know Batwoman has a loyal following.  I do know Williams is one of the more acclaimed artists working today.  I know this revamped Batwoman was something more than just another costumer cut-up swinging around Gotham City who took their inspiration from flying rodents and as an open lesbian, Kate Kane was one of the few gay superheroes in a genre that still lags behind most of pop culture in acceptance and enlightenment of homosexuality.

This is not simply about imaginary characters in made-up stories that never happened.  It’s about not marginalizing an entire group of people.

It’s okay for Batwoman to be a lesbian.   Lesbians are popular now.   It’s okay for her to draw her having sex with her partner.  Guys dig women making out.    It’ s not okay to let her to marry her partner because that runs counter to DC’s editorial mandates.    Those same editorial mandates where same-sex marriage is a hell-no! but Naked Harley Quinn is a yes, please!

The reasons for the unholy marriage between the homophobic Orson Scott Card and DC is starting to become clear.

DC’s decision to bar Batwoman’s big gay marriage from happening is being chalked up as being about business instead of homophobia, but that seems like bullshit particularly when Williams says it was an editorial dictate to keep Batwoman and Maggie Sawyer’s marriage from happening.

in recent months, DC has asked us to alter or completely discard many long-standing storylines in ways that we feel compromise the character and the series. We were told to ditch plans for Killer Croc’s origins; forced to drastically alter the original ending of our current arc, which would have defined Batwoman’s heroic future in bold new ways; and, most crushingly, prohibited from ever showing Kate and Maggie actually getting married. All of these editorial decisions came at the last minute, and always after a year or more of planning and plotting on our end.

Batwoman has won a few GLAAD awards. Well, it was nice while it lasted, but onward and upward!

I’m sure whomever the new writer and artist on Batwoman will do fine. They’ll probably straighten her out and have her kick this lesbian thing, sex her up, make her breasts bigger than her head like Power Girl and fall madly in bed with Batman.

Homophobia? Maybe not, but isn’t it interesting how hard DC pushed back when the Internet revolted against Orson Scott Card writing a Superman comic, but is now issuing boiler-plate statements about forcing out the creators of one of their few New 52 titles worth reading.

As far as “business decisions” goes, while DC may have a problem with same-sex marriage, they don’t have a similar one with crude sexual exploitation.

DC Comics has been having a bad week. Yesterday, two members of the Batwoman editorial team quit after their publishers refused to allow Batwoman (who is a lesbian character) to marry her partner. And now the comic company has provoked even more outrage by hosting a contest in which they readers to draw Harley Quinn, a popular villain, preparing to commit suicide. Naked.

The trope of sensationalized female character deaths has long haunted the medium, as has a terrible tendency to oversexualize and objectify women characters; it’s almost surprising that it’s taken DC this long to combine the two into a vile heap of casual sexism — because female suicide is so fascinating and compelling and cool, right, guys?

The contest winner will have the opportunity to contribute to an upcoming comic about Harley Quinn; it’s billed as an amazing opportunity to break into the industry. In order to be considered, one must draw four panels: in the first, Harley is attempting to get struck by lightning, in the second she’s wearing a bikini made of chicken in the hopes that alligators will devour her, and in the third she’s attempting to get swallowed by a whale. The fourth is, by far, the worst:

Harley sitting naked in a bathtub with toasters, blow dryers, blenders, appliances all dangling above the bathtub and she has a cord that will release them all.  We are watching the moment before the inevitable death.  Her expression is one of “oh well, guess that’s it for me” and she has resigned herself to the moment that is going to happen.

Why would anyone want to see a naked and depressed woman about to electrocute herself in a bathtub and why would I want to pay $3.99 to see it?

Oh HELL no, says DC.

What’s the message from DC Comics?   Same-sex superhero marriage=BAD

Naked superbabe about to off herself=GOOD

Well, at least they don’t have Dr. Light raping anyone, huh? Hey kids! Rapey comics!

Generally speaking, readers prefer superheroes to be White, male, heterosexual and single. Like they are.

Doesn’t make it right and it sure doesn’t make it representative.

I’m tired of comic book tokenism and I’m even more tired of always being told, “Look, you got your one (fill in the blank) hero and that’s all you’re gonna get!”

When Marvel married off one of their innumerable mutants, Northstar, to his partner a few years ago, some said this was simply a comic book company riding the wave of a hot trend.   Maybe so.  Northstar is a minor league, third-string character.   It felt like a token gesture, not a giant step forward and Northstar hasn’t played a major role in the X-Universe since he jumped the broom.

But it happened.   And it hasn’t been “ret-conned” out of existence.  The sun still came up and the world still turns.  A gay marriage happened in comic books and NOTHING BAD HAPPENED.

Marvel is not better than DC.  But on this one issue Marvel is better than DC.

DC can make this right.   They could do it.   They should do it.  Will they do it?

That might take more moral courage than anyone at DC has.

GLAAD’s Outrageously Selective Outrage

Kirk says for gays it doesn't get better.

Like an example of double standards and selective outrage?  Me too.  Here’s one case of it in action.

LOS ANGELES, March 4 (TheWrap.com) – Former “Growing Pains” star Kirk Cameron‘s negative comments on homosexuality and gay marriage, made Friday on CNN’s “Pier Morgan Tonight,” have drawn a rapid response from GLAAD.

Cameron said he thought homosexuality was “unnatural.”

“I think that it’s detrimental and ultimately destructive to so many of the foundations of civilization,” the actor told Morgan.

Cameron, who is an evangelical Christian, also spoke out against gay marriage.

“Marriage is almost as old as dirt, and it was defined in the garden between Adam and Eve. One man, one woman for life till death do you part. So I would never attempt to try to redefine marriage. And I don’t think anyone else should either,” Cameron said. “So do I support the idea of gay marriage? No, I don’t.”

The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation issued a statement Saturday in response to the actor’s appearance on the CNN program.

“In this interview, Kirk Cameron sounds even more dated than his 1980s TV character,” Herndon Graddick, senior director of programs at GLAAD, wrote “Cameron is out of step with a growing majority of Americans, particularly people of faith who believe that their gay and lesbian brothers and sisters should be loved and accepted based on their character and not condemned because of their sexual orientation.”

Graddick also addressed Cameron’s remarks regarding gay marriage.

“With an increasing number of states recognizing marriage equality, Americans are seeing that marriage is about committed couples who want to make a lifelong promise to take care of and be responsible for each other and that gay and lesbian couples need equal security and legal protections. That’s not ‘redefining’ anything.”

In brief remarks to TMZ Saturday night, Morgan called Cameron “brave” to voice his beliefs. Morgan said he feels Cameron “was honest to what he believed” even if most people find his views to be “antiquated.”

When Roland Martin tweeted remarks GLAAD considered homophobic and possibly an incitement to gay bashing, they unleashed their rap on him leading to CNN suspending him indefinitely, despite Mr. Martin’s apology.

GLAAD gives Piers Morgan a pass on enabling homophobia.

Piers Morgan gives Kirk Cameron a forum to call homosexuality “unnatural,” “detrimental” and “ultimately destructive to so many of the foundations of civilization” and though a has-been, hack actor like Cameron gets the GLAAD smack down, why is Morgan given a pass for telling TMZ Cameron’s remarks were “brave” and “honest?”  Does the qualifier that they were “antiquated” give Morgan a pass from Martin’s apology does not?

Seems like GLAAD has their own evolving standards when it comes to Martin’s silly Tweets and  Morgan’s tacit approval of Cameron’s clear and present homophobia.   What’s the lesson to be learned here?   It’s a bad thing when a Black CNN contributor implies homophobia but it’s okay when a White CNN host applauds it?

How can GLAAD plausibly criticize a nobody like Cameron while giving Morgan a pass?   I could care less what a nobody like Cameron says.  This is a guy who attacked Steven Hawking and John Lennon for not believing in heaven.  To go after the former teen idol of Growing Pains while saying nothing about Piers Morgan, the enabler and defender of Camerion’s bigotry makes no sense.  Or maybe it does if GLAAD figures they’ve bagged their quota of CNN personalities by getting Martin off the air.

GLAAD apparently considers the sin lies in making remarks they consider offensive.  But if you give the homophobe a forum and defend his right to be homophobic, it’s no harm, no foul.

Or maybe the simplest answer is it’s true that hypocrisy IS the greatest luxury and GLAAD is more willing to take on homophobic remarks when they’re coming from self-described Christians like Martin and Cameron and tolerate them when Morgan sticks up for bigotry.

The White privilege card.  Don’t leave home without it

The Soul Sacrifice of Roland Martin

Live by the word and die by the word

CNN contributor Roland Martin makes his living off of words.  A few of them led to his suspension from the network and an uncertain future.

While most of the country was watching the Super Bowl, Martin was merrily tweeting away providing a running commentary of the game, the commercials and anything else that popped in his head he figured might amuse his thousands of Twitter followers.

Soccer star David Beckham’s commercial with him stripped down to his skivvies appeared and next came the words that croaked Martin at CNN.

“If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham’s H&M underwear ad, smack the ish out of him!”

If all hell didn’t break loose a small enough piece did and with it the gay activist group, GLAAD, ripped Martin for encouraging anti-gay violence and demanded CNN fire him.   Martin later issued an apology, but with his standard sarcasm dripping from it.

“Let me address the issue that some in the LGBT community have raised regarding some of my Super Bowl tweets yesterday,” he wrote. “I made several cracks about soccer as I do all the time. I was not referring to sexuality directly or indirectly regarding the David Beckham ad, and I’m sorry folks took it otherwise.”

Roland Martin's troublesome Tweet

Got that LGBT community?   It’s not me, it’s you.   As an apology it was inadequate.   As far as saving Martin’s job with CNN, it was insufficient.

CNN suspended Martin indefinitely and issued a statement “Roland Martin’s tweets were regrettable and offensive.  Language that demeans is inconsistent with the values and culture of our organization, and is not tolerated. We have been giving careful consideration to this matter, and Roland will not be appearing on our air for the time being.”

Roland Martin is an experienced journalist and he knows journalists have to be accountable for their words.   He is also a Black man with a high-profile gig and there’s a hot spotlight on him.  He shouldn’t overshare on Twitter and while what he said was silly and sophomoric, I don’t think it was vicious or homophobic.

GLAAD did and they pounced.   They could have seen Martin’s remarks as a teaching moment opportunity to point out how words can be hurtful and homophobic speech creeps out when we least suspect it.

Nuh-uh.  That’s not how GLAAD rolls.  They’re in the business of collecting hides, not educating minds.  They howled for Martin’s head and CNN served it up on a silver platter (but not conservative commentator Dana Loesch who said she’d happily piss on dead Afghanis as U.S. troops have done).  The takeaway here is White gays have a stronger lobby than dead Afghanis.

GLAAD fires back at Martin.

I can’t say I know Roland Martin, but I’ve met him and sparred with him over other issues. Martin is passionate, articulate, smart and he fights for what he believes in. He is also caustic, patronizing, overbearing, and occasionally nasty.  Martin can be pleasant and charming when he wants, but get on his bad side (and it doesn’t take much to get there) and bring your lunch for an all day fight.

I don’t think Roland should be fired for his Tweets. He should be educated and learn how homophobia hurts. This is the proverbial “teaching moment” and rather than hang Mr. Martin out to dry,  GLAAD and other gay activists missed an opportunity to show Martin and the Black community that discrimination and insensitive speech is unacceptable no matter who does it.

Martin should have known as a Black man in a prominent position, the spotlight is always on and with social media you’re ALWAYS “on the record.”  I have never understood why some people can’t go to the john without reporting the details on Twitter, but some folks find these details riveting reading.

But there is a double standard here where a CNN conservative commentator can say she would piss on dead Afghanis and she isn’t suspended, but Rick Sanchez is fired for making insensitive remarks about Jews and Martin is suspended for offending gays.   Apparently, CNN is selective about what kind of speech crosses the line depending on what group is demeaned.

Martin objects to homosexuality based upon his religious upbringing and his 2006 article references how his wife ministers to gays to change their orientation.  I think that kind of ministering is crap, but I also recognize Martin and his wife believe the same way as other Black folks do.  That does not make it right. It does make it a reality.

Mr. Martin is no friend of mine. I don’t even much like the guy, but I do think he has the right to free speech. His employers at CNN have the right to hold him responsible for that speech–as long as everyone else is being held to that same standard and that is not the case.

Martin’s discriminatory words are being matched and trumped by GLAAD’s hectoring and CNN’s cave-in to a pressure group.   He was served up as a soul sacrifice on a silver platter to the altar of political correctness gone berserk.

Freedom of speech does not men freedom from taking responsibility for that speech.  Martin will have to do the same as Tracy Morgan, Mel Gibson, Michael Richards and everyone else who words have done a drive-by past their brain.  Martin is a man of strongly held and expressed opinion and sometimes those opinions come back to bite where it smarts.   I’m sure he will emerge from this externally chastised and internally unbowed.

The takeaway from this is other oppressed groups have learned well the tactics of Blacks during the Civil Rights era of protest and how to seize, hold the moral high ground and slap down the oppressor.  They have learned it so well they have turned the tables on the once oppressed whom they now consider are oppressing them.

This must be what they mean by poetic justice.

Comedy is not pretty and neither is homophobia.

Why does this man have a problem with gays?

Never thought I’d ever blog about Tracy Morgan, but life’s full of surprises like that.

So was Morgan’s rancid rant during a performance in Nashville set a new low in homophobic ignorance.  Morgan said his son,  “better talk to me like a man and not in a gay voice or I’ll pull out a knife and stab that little nigger to death.”

Having previously said in 2009 that being gay was “a choice” Morgan added, “”I don’t “fucking care if I piss off some gays, because if they can take a fucking dick up their ass … they can take a fucking joke.”

Is Tracy is angling to become Herman “Homosexuality is a sin and a choice” Cain’s running mate?

Wednesday, some folks got upset with comedian Wanda Sykes for saying she suffered more discrimination for being gay than being Black.  Thursday, some folks got upset with comedian Tracy Morgan for saying he’d kill his son for being gay.

Friday,ONE of them apologized and that was the dummy who suggested his own child would be better off dead than gay.

“I want to apologize to my fans and the gay & lesbian community for my choice of words at my recent stand-up act in Nashville. I’m not a hateful person and don’t condone any kind of violence against others. While I am an equal opportunity jokester, and my friends know what is in my heart, even in a comedy club this clearly went too far and was not funny in any context.”

Sure thing, Tracy.  And if I were to call you a shit-stain skidmark on America’s clean sheets, would you say I was going too far?

If Morgan wasn’t funny to me before (and he wasn’t), he’s definitely not funny to me NOW.  His ignorance leaves me colder than his “jokes.”

This is rapidly turning into a bad version of a celebrity roast with comedians battling it out.

Chris Rock jumped into the mix and Tweeted,”I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to live in a world where Tracy Morgan can’t say foul, inappropriate shit,”

That defense earned Rock a sarcastic response from GLADD, “Language about stabbing kids for being gay isn’t ‘foul.’  It’s dangerous.”

Rock then regrouped, rethought and clarified his earlier remarks.

:”Tracy Morgan is a tad off as we all know that so when tracy says something i usually don’t take it anymore serious that i would a statement from gary busey or flavor flav.  when i first heard the statement i thought it was offensive but it also reminded me of my father saying i’ll kill you if you ever bring home a white girl but after reading everything tracy said, wow, i get it that shit wasn’t call for and i don’t support it at all.  now, can i please go to the tony awards without getting my ass kicked?”

This is NOT Janet Jackson.

That sound you just heard was Chris Rock backing up the bus to make sure he ran over Tracy Morgan.

But CNN commentator Roland Martin wonders why all the fuss?

There isn’t enough space on the Internet to chronicle the number of times a comedian has said nasty and vile things. Some of it leading the audience to fall out laughing or sometimes, or as in the case of Morgan, walk out in protest. If we are to demand an apology for every time a comedian is sexist against men or women, racist or homophobic, we might as well launch a website called www.comediansapologizedaily.com.

Say I’m wrong. Fine. Say I’m insensitive to gays and lesbians. Fine. I’ll wait for the usual bigots to say that I’m defending Tracy Morgan because he’s black. Fine. But think for a moment at all the times you’ve laughed at comedians based on the things they had to say. Then ask yourself: Did I laugh, and why?

Sorry, if I’m being honest here and not focusing on political correctness. I just believe that many of you would be shocked and amazed that you laughed hysterically at some of the most sexist, homophobic, racist stuff imaginable by comedians of all shapes, sizes, ethnic backgrounds, genders and sexual orientations.

Maybe none of us want to accept that as a comedian, Morgan is keenly aware of what society actually thinks, and he simply said it onstage.  Isn’t that what comedians have always done?  Reflect what society actually thinks, but say it in a forum where we can laugh through our pain?

This is the part where I would normally mutter, “bullshit,” but Sykes, who is a married lesbian with twins took to her Twitter account to put all three brothers in check and did it far better than I could ever think to.

“I do believe in free speech, but for a youth in TN or any other numerous place, Tracy just yelled, ‘Fire,’ in a crowded theater,”

“Ok, piss’d reading, “I don’t want 2 live n a world where Tracy can’t say…” I Do! U Keep the world, just break me off an evolved country,”

“Ro, I love and respect you, so I feel that I can tell you that your column is some bullshit. We can do better.”

“Tracy has the right to say whatever he wants to say, just like we have the right to say, not acceptable.,” and, “WE as a country. We used to picnic to watch public hangings, but WE figured out, that was some sick shit.”

Big laughs can come out of bad words.  Lenny Bruce, Richard Pryor and George Carlin were masters of the game.  But Tracy Morgan is not a Bruce, Pryor or Carlin and he is not a master of this game and when you’re not a master you come off looking like a stumbling, bumbling fool instead.

Before anyone says we should all be a little less sensitive, if an openly gay White comedian starts in on the Black parents who give their kids weird names or some such stereotype everybody chill and nobody call the NAACP on your speed dial, okay?

Miss Sykes has had quite enough of the homophobia.

We can’t demand respect for ourselves and deny it others.  Either everyone gets it or nobody does.

Comedians shouldn’t be afraid to make jokes about whatever they want to, but they have to own their words, same as everybody else. Not everything gets written off with, “It was just a joke.” Some jokes ain’t funny

Don’t play the game when you don’t know the rules.  Morgan doesn’t know the rules.