BREAKING: Orson Scott Card Eats at Chik-Fil-A

samneesupesTo the extent that a science fiction author can be famous, Orson Scott Card is famous. I consider myself a moderate fan of science fiction, but if pressed I could name maybe five writers off the top of my noggin. He’s one of them. In the slow-paced world of science fiction fame, that’s the height of the bar.

In recent years, as you have no doubt heard, Orson Scott Card has become famous for unfortunate reasons, less for his merits as a writer and more for his outspoken homophobia. Everyone has an opinion on the gay marriage controversy, and plenty of them sound too much like my granddad’s for my taste, but not everyone joins the board of the National Organization for Marriage. If you haven’t heard of the National Organization for Marriage, it is a national organization against people’s marriages. Orson Scott Card doesn’t just blow hard at the pub about his point of view; this is a guy who’s spending time out of his workday. He is fighting this fight personally to keep lifelong friends of mine second-class citizens.

And now Orson Scott Card has written a superhero comic for a major publisher. This activist so many of us find odious has put words in the mouths of iconic characters from our childhoods. This will not stand.

Or, come to think of it, it will. The book he wrote was called Ultimate Iron Man, and if you believe the people who report such things its first issue sold 150,000 copies. It did well enough to get a second volume, which Card also wrote and which also sold well.

I missed you at the Iron Man protest.

I’ve heard the theory that people are outraged this time because “this is Superman we’re talking about.” Hogwash and balderdash. The only people who still think Superman is special or symbolic are people who don’t read comics and/or write for news sites. People are outraged this time because this is the time of outrage. Whenever I’m struggling to come up with a column topic, I say, “What were people apoplectic with indignation about this week?” After that, it takes about twelve seconds. There’s a new one every few days, and in our public bloodlust we have devalued outrage over stuff like bigotry, homophobia and injustice with an endless trickling piddle of overblown nonsense. We are the Boy Who Cried Petition.

And we don’t debate or agree to disagree anymore. Here in the time of outrage, in the Double Down Era, if you don’t see things our way we shut you the f*** down. If I don’t want to read Avengers Arena, Avengers Arena should be wiped from the face of the earth like it never happened. Sure, people want to drum Card out of comics, but a month ago they wanted to do the same thing to Dan Slott because his Spider-Man was all wrong. Orson Scott Card and his friends don’t agree with the way my friends live, so they try to make the way my friends live illegal. In turn, people who agree with my friends mount a movement to render Card unemployable. Not even a year ago, One Million Moms tried to mount the same kind of movement to force DC and Marvel to abandon gay characters entirely for the Sake of the Children. That was their proposed solution. “My kids have actually never seen a comic book before, but I demand that everyone in the Marvel Universe is straight by this time next week.”

What is the goal? So far, the chief outcome of this newest controversy has been vastly more publicity for a digital Superman anthology than anyone involved could have ever dreamed of. For everyone who writes an open letter to DC editorial (who, by the way, were surely aware of this possibility the day they hired Orson Scott Card) there is someone in line at Chik-Fil-A who will buy the book out of defiant solidarity. I wonder how many new readers it will bring in.

Should we protest the artists for agreeing to work with him? Does that make things better or worse?

ultimate iron manAll of this has roots in something good. As longtime readers of superhero comics, we see injustice or people causing suffering and we want to take it upon ourselves to set things right. Unfortunately, as longtime readers of superhero comics, I think we also tend to label people bad guys pretty quick, not to mention the “Smash!” Sound Effect Approach to Problem Solving.

If DC spiked Card’s Superman story tomorrow, would that help someone? What would help someone? How do we grapple with this in a way that produces something positive?

I wasn’t always so ambivalent about these perpetually mounting campaigns. For a while, I loved this kind of thing. A few months ago, I noticed an uptick in troll shaming that delighted me. Instead of just ignoring them and not feeding them, online outlets began taking trolls to task. Gawker looked for kids who were tweeting racial slurs on election day, dug up those kids’ real names, and printed them. When they could, they called their school principals. People were getting disciplined for the way they conducted themselves online, and it was viscerally satisfying. It felt like something was being accomplished. Then a Massachusetts woman took a picture of herself pretending to shout and flip off the “Silence and Respect” sign at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. It was a joke in questionable taste, but it was a joke. A joke I might make, if I’m being completely honest. The woman only posted the photo on her private Facebook wall to her friends. It turned out that she was the weekly outrage for one of those friends, however, and it wasn’t long before the photo was everywhere and a campaign was mounted to get her fired from her job. That campaign was successful. In the Facebook group that people organized to get a stranger fired, they are still cheering. A recent commenter asked if they was any way they could get her charged with a crime.

I don’t want to help the National Organization for Marriage, but I don’t want to be that commenter either.

All of this makes me feel helpless, because no matter how pointless and wearying it sometimes seems I couldn’t give you a viable alternative. I don’t see much good coming from any of this.  I don’t see anyone’s mind changed. I don’t see Orson Scott Card looking at the tolerant people upset by his ability to get a job and thinking, “Perhaps I’ve been thinking about this issue all wrong.” There has to be a better, more productive way to approach this. I just wish I had any idea what it was.

 


Jim Mroczkowski has already done plenty of stuff that should have gotten him fired from iFanboy, so save your letter.

Comments

  1. stuclach stuclach says:

    I want the title of this article on a t-shirt. Now. Then I want to wear it to Chik-fil-a.

    I like Orson Scott Card’s novels. I love Ender’s Game. I strongly disagree with some of his beliefs. His beliefs don’t make Ender’s Game any less entertaining.

    • sitara119 sitara119 says:

      I’m curious, would Mein Kampf make any of Hitler’s paintings less enjoyable? Seriously, is any one interested in buying one and framing it on their wall, if it was beautiful? Or are his hateful ideals too much to get past?

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      Have you ever seen Hitler’s paintings? They’re not bad to be honest. We studied his work in my Art History class, and he excelled at depicting architecture. A common flaw in all of them were that the people were too small. I’ve never seen anyone selling a Hitler painting, but if he (of his disciples) doesn’t get any money then what would be the harm in buying it? I’ve never read “Mein Krompf”, but I had a friend in high school who did. He didn’t care what others thought of him reading it, he thought it was an interesting book (I never got or sought after more answers after that).

    • KevinAB KevinAB says:

      @sitara119 I’m guessing you are making the comparison in a humorous fashion, but are we as a community seriously at the “compare something to Hitler in the very first reply to Post comment” mark? I mean 4chan this is not…and hopefully will maintain some lack of hyperbolic hoopla.

    • stuclach stuclach says:

      Godwin’s Law.

      No, Mein Kampf would not make his paintings any less enjoyable. I can hate Hitler without it affecting my opinion of his artwork.

      P.S. It is my understanding that Hitler’s painting are quite valuable. Not necessarily because they are beautiful.

    • sitara119 sitara119 says:

      I love Godwin’s law. :D

      Hate is hate. regardless if you’re a nazi, chik-Fil-a customer or an artist. Luckily Card isn’t murdering anyone. The only thing he’s trying to murder is dreams and lifestyles ;)

    • stuclach stuclach says:

      Just to clarify: I disagree with Card’s views concerning homosexuality. I actively support organizations that work against Card’s efforts. I am exercising my right to free speech via my support just as Card is exercising his. I fully support his right to free speech.

      I understand that buying a Card book very, very slightly increases his income and therefore even more slightly increases his giving to organizations that push against gay rights. I will buy his book IF I feel that the benefit of reading the book is greater than the guilt I feel from giving a very, very small fraction of my money to Card.

      **To be honest, I’ve never paid for a Card book. Everything I’ve read of his has been via our local library.**

      This is how I feel when I open my iPad: I know how this thing was made. I know what that supply chain looks like. I feel slightly guilty, but I know that the benefit I receive from using that iPad outweighs the guilt. Does this make me a bad person? Maybe, but I’m willing to endure that guilt if it means I get to read cool shit and play with cool devices.

    • sitara119 sitara119 says:

      I don’t think you’re a bad person, but then again, I don’t really know you. :)

    • stuclach stuclach says:

      Excellent response.

    • stuclach stuclach says:

      I hope we get a chance to meet at an iFanboy party at some point. I’ll buy you a beer.

  2. asafager says:

    The solution is to stop reading the comments section. Too bad nobody reasonable will ever read this.

  3. CaseyJustice CaseyJustice says:

    Great article. I love to see people discussing multiple sides of a complicated issue.

    It’s a tough issue, but I honestly think that we really only have two productive options when stuff like this comes up with which we are actively offended:

    1) Boycott the product: Don’t buy Orson Scott Card’s work. If enough people adhere to this concept, he may not get hired for further work, and the message will have (hopefully) been sent that folks will not support writers who engage in hateful activities.

    2) Engage in productive discussion: Talk about the issue, raise awareness of it, but throwing around more hatred and anger really does little but cause more pain and grief. Calling for people to lose their jobs or be charged with crimes (as in Jimski’s facebook example) are big things, not to be taken lightly, and shaming others into agreeing with your opinion is a form of bullying. However, debate over issues like this is vital, and it only can lead to change if everyone involved enters with an open mind and a cool head.

    Other than that, I dunno. The internet makes the great human conversation into a whole different animal, and it’s fascinating to watch it evolve.

  4. bertkreth says:

    I suppose if it were a character I cared about I might get upset. But DC has already killed my favorites in the last (or was it the time before that) culling and relaunching, so what does it matter. If Superman goes to Earth 2 and bashes Green Lantern, then I might get angry, but I don’t buy Superman or Ironman or Card either. Nothing he has Superman say or do will be remembered 6 months after its release.

  5. RoiVampire RoiVampire says:

    If this is the kind of reaction a digital comic gets i can’t even imagine the media storm that’s going to occur when the Ender movie is released.

    brilliant column as always

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      Who knows how the movie will do? The book got me through high school so I hope the movie is good. I’ll wait and see what the reviews for it are before I give money for it tho (Same guy who directed Wolverine Origins).

  6. IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

    I think being Tolerant is the new intolerance. What I mean by that, is it seems like everyone in our society has to think the same way about every issue (a very dangerous philosophy in any arena). Does that not seem like Bullying to other people? Does bullying the bullies to silence them actually make things better? Sure you’ve made your point and “won”, but I believe you’d lose the Moral Highground. I’m not gonna pretend my beliefs are 100% “right”, but people badgering me Until I agree with their stance because they believe they’re right seems really twisted. I get why, absolutely; people are tired of old-fashioned thinking and want everyone to get along. But if you have to bomb half the planet in order to eliminate war, is it worth it? I enjoy OSC’s cards books, and plan to buy more. I may or may not agree with his beliefs but I do wish he would phrase them better. I think he should make room for compromise tho, only Rorschach should hold on to his stance until Armageddon. If I buy this book, it’s because I want to read a good story by an author I enjoy, not to support his political stances (others can disagree and do the opposite). I don’t think people should buy a boom to make a symbolic gesture tho, it should be to read it and enjoy it. I don’t know if DC did this because of OSC’s talent or to create press for the book, I would hope it’s to bring in new and interesting writers. Regardless, there will be other controversies next week so it may not be worth getting too upset about the ones this week.

    • sitara119 sitara119 says:

      Bullying the bullies is a great idea. Superheroes do it to villains all the time. It’s important to note that most villains, from their own point of view, think they are in the right, which justifies despicable acts in their eyes. Like subjugating people and taking their rights away. That’s wrong and I would choose to fight that type of oppression.

    • KenOchalek KenOchalek says:

      Sorry, sitara, but bullying the bullies really feels like a terrible idea to me. To use a cliche, fighting fire with fire leaves everything a burnt, smoldering mess.

      No matter how noble the intentions, or how vile the initial bullying might be, bullying the bullies is really nothing more than a justification for revenge. And while revenge might occasionally bring about peace on an individual basis, I don’t think it works as well on a large scale (see the long running feuds in the Middle East, Africa and Northern Ireland, for starters).

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      Bullying the bullies is a good strategy, can’t disagree with that. Superheroes don’t “bully” villains tho, they stop people who commit crimes. Huge difference between the FF arresting Dr.Doom for trying to blow up the moon and Spider-Man punching him out for saying “I want to take over the world!”. What I was saying is that using the same tactics against these people makes you just like them (take who’s right out of the equation), and if that happens then was your “victory” worth it? Many would say “absolutely, winning is what’s important”. This is nor a new tactic tho, silencing people who disagree with you, it’s been going on for decades. It does not foster peace and understanding. It was either Martin Luther King Jr or Gaundi who said subjugating your enemies doesn’t end conflict, it ensures it in the future. And yes, most villains in their eyes are “right” it makes for compelling characters. It should be noted that some villains give the heroes pause and make them unsure who’s right or wrong, which usually ends with whoever is strongest “wins” (not very helpful).

    • sitara119 sitara119 says:

      Sorry, Ken, but that’s hippie jargon. rolling over and letting people do whatever they want for the sake of keeping OUR hands clean is way too pacifist for me. besides, im not talking about killing Card for his beliefs. Oh, and an eye for an eye doesn’t leave everyone blind, didn’t u see 7 psychos ;)
      @ithosapien
      Spider-Mann wouldn’t punch dr doom for saying he wants to take over the world, he’d punch him for TRYING to take over the world. Card isn’t just saying he disagrees, he’s openly fighting. I’m not saying “let’s get violent and go kick his ass” Middle East style, but I’m not going to be silent while he hate campaigns.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      @Sitara, I can’t believe you just used the term hippie jargon. Why so dismissive of hippies? I may poke fun at them occasionally but anyone who lives off the earth, recycles religiously, and genuinely believes in those things is fine with me. You missed the point of what I said but reiterated it anyway. I don’t expect you to be silent, I would like it if You (and everyone who agrees with you and everyone who disagrees with you) to stop repeating history. Guess I’m a hippie, but two sides throwing hate at each other to silence the opponent just seems so…pointless.

    • sitara119 sitara119 says:

      I’m not dismissive of hippies in general. Just the pacifist stance they take in the face confrontation. I’m a naturopath, so I’m often thrown in the same boat as them because I recycle, avoid processed foods and generally take very liberal stances on issues. Which is fine, they’re good people who don’t eat at Chik-Fil-a. :P
      And again, I don’t want to lynch Card and string ‘em up. I just won’t buy his work and I’ll try to convince others not to, as well. If that=me “throwing hate”, then so be it.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      “Bullying the bullies is a great idea.” first response to my post. @Sitara, I disagree with pacifism as well, but it is a noble endeavor. Or it’s intentions are noble.

  7. Parker Parker says:

    While Card did have these opinions before Ultimate Iron Man was released he was not on the board at the National Organization for Marriage until 2009. Ultimate Iron Man cam out in 2005 and 2007.
    So while he was giving his opinion before this he wasn’t actively fighting against it until well after these books came out.

    I would be fine with him being let go from this book and not employed by any comics company. He has every right to speak his mind and fight for what he believes. But there are consequences to what you say and being a bigot should not be tolerated, especially by a company as large as Warner Bros.

  8. KillTheG1mp KillTheG1mp says:

    The real debate is one about the fundamentals of society and we, ourselves, as we see it and want it to be.

    People are willing to vote so other people get their “rights” revoked. That, is a really deranging thought in 2013. Sounds awfully like the Nazis? Well it should…

    The truth is we live in a fucked up world where for some people, Animal Farm by George Orwell is a fact, “all animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others…”

    So yeah, if the guy is a homophobe, it’s is “right” I guess, but he should shut the hell up about it and don’t go on a crusade with it, that’s the saddest thing about it: trying to prove so hard that you’re right about something so disgusting and being willing to literally go to war against others for it, that’s just pretty fucking low in my opinion.

  9. sitara119 sitara119 says:

    I’ve never read a Card piece and after reading this article, I never will.
    I also do not eat at Chik-Fil-A.

  10. To be fair in regards the Ultimate Iron Man series, I wan’t aware at the time that he was involved in these hate-filled activities. It was only much later that I heard about it. I know it blew up hugely in the wake of the work he did on the Shadow Complex game,even more so than the current issues around the Superman comic. Was he simply no involved with these hate-organisations at the time?

  11. For me, it comes down to opinion vs. activism. If someone who’s part of an organisation like Scott Card is actively involved in trying to prevent others from their rights like gay marriage or barring the purchase of birth-control, then a boycott against this person is totally fair. If a person is only expressing opinions then the “burn them at the stake” sheep mentality is uncalled for.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      I think the Ms. America contestant (2007,2008?) is a good example of that. She said something like “I believe marriage is between a man and a woman”. The outrage at that statement (and her personally) was astounding.

    • Exactly. She was asked a question and gave her answer. Whether it was based on her beliefs and/or opinions should not have factored in.

    • My last comment should read “based on her religious beliefs” and not how I wrote it. Opinion is what she answered.

    • sitara119 sitara119 says:

      @treeofthestoneage
      I agree. I have no problem with Card beLIEving what he believes, but he’s openly trying to take people’s rights away because of who they love. It just sound so fucking evil to me.

    • USPUNX USPUNX says:

      @ithosapien: I can’t believe how many people hide behind the “expressing” opinions is okay as long as they don’t “act” on them. It is never okay to express hate filled opinions.

      What if she had said “I believe marriage is between a man and woman of the same race.” Would the outrage she received then be astounding? Of course not. If she had made a racial comment no one would defend her and rightfully so. Why is this situation any different? It’s not. Why is racism inappropriate but bigotry in other forms is acceptable? It’s not. I would say what you and @treeofthestoneage are saying presents a pretty thin line.

      It seems like you are saying: “It’s okay to hate gays and even talk about it as long as you don’t actively do something against them.” Is that correct? If not please correct me because that is what it sounds like.

      You can’t choose to be born straight or gay anymore than you can choose to be born a certain race. So why is it acceptable for someone to believe a group of people don’t deserve the same rights as everyone else based on something completely out of their control? It’s not. Ever.

      Our goal in society shouldn’t be to tolerate people with hateful ideas. Our goal also shouldn’t be to exclude those people form society. Our goal should be to change minds. To show every member of our society that even though people are different we are all still humans and we all deserve the same right to live our lives.

      I know that sounds idealistic, and I admit it is, but I also think it is the only path to a healthy society. My extended family comes from a part of the country where these views are not only common but accepted. They love me but they don’t hide their distaste for my “bleeding heart” opinions. So I know how hard it can be to try and change bigoted minds. But I still think it is always worth the effort.

    • diebenny diebenny says:

      “What if she had said “I believe marriage is between a man and woman of the same race.” Would the outrage she received then be astounding? Of course not. If she had made a racial comment no one would defend her and rightfully so. Why is this situation any different? It’s not. Why is racism inappropriate but bigotry in other forms is acceptable? It’s not.”

      Slam fucking dunk, right there.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      @Uspunx, I should have known we’d clash again! Heh, I’m gonna have to be on my toes with you. If she had said “I believe marriage should be between a man and a woman of the SAME race” I would not support that. I will point out that many people of many ethinicites silently believe that without consequence. If that same woman had said “I think we should stone all gays to death” I wouldn’t support that either. Maybe she was a homophobe (a term I question alot), or maybe she just believed that marriage is between a man and a woman. Some people have those traditional views without any hate or hidden feelings behind them. I don’t know her, maybe she spoke about it later and did say something that crossed a line, I don’t know. To me, “I believe marriage is between a man and a woman” doesn’t strike me as automatically homophobic and hate-filled (and people who vehemently say otherwise I find a little suspect). I’m not saying “it’s ok to hate gays as long as you don’t act it” (ironically, many people have suggested who Support gay marriage), what I will say is that in sociology I learned that everyone (white,black,male,female,straight,gay,bi,young,old) has some kind of prejudice. Obviously that doesn’t make it ok, but hating people who hate you (or disagree with you) doesn’t make you any better than them (I’ve posted on this already, with limited support).

    • USPUNX USPUNX says:

      @ithosapien: We meet again! I do enjoy our discussions!!

      My point was this: bigotry is NEVER okay. You can qualify it or equivocate in any way you want, but having views that exclude certain groups of people from the same rights guaranteed all Americans under the Constitution, is hate. You can call them “traditional” or “religious” or “old school” or any other cute name you want but that doesn’t change the fact that the core of those beliefs is the inherent betterness or rightness of one group over another. So “believing marriage is between a man and a women” by definition means that you believe “marriage is not between a man and another man.” Which is the definition of homophobic.

    • My point is that’s what freedom of speech is for and not that I condone the hate of any culture; to me there is a clear distinction. If someone says keep marriage within the race for purity its not something I support, but something people are entitled to based on our rights. The Amish keep it in the race, now one could say they’re racist but you be missing the point of their way of life. I have no problem with this community because their beliefs don’t impede on mine. They keep to themselves and its alright by me. Another example is neo-Nazi types, (I’ll have nothing to do with them), but expressing opinions and yes, hate speech to like-minded people: It is their right, I would say. To me, its not a question of what’s acceptable, but rather, what’s permissible under the first amendment. Or at least, it is supposed to be our rights.

      This I say as a minority. I’m Latino.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      @Uspunx, yes I enjoy them as well. I’m not trying to justify hate, but saying bigotry and homophobia are wrong and hating people who have those traits… See where I’m going here? Nobody should hate anybody, too bad almost everyone on this planet does anyway. If you’re gonna support gay marriage and fight against homophobia, you shouldn’t used the exact same tactics that other side used. Its effective, absolutely, it’s also hypocritical and eliminates the moral high ground. I really wish there was a way to compromise and please both sides; like in “Ex Machina” by BKV. In it, Mayor Hundred suggests replacing all marriages with civil unions with the exact same rights that come with marriage, while those that want to be “married” can go to a church/temple/mosque (I would support the he’ll out of this idea). Obviously that doesn’t happen because he doesn’t have the authority to do so (he may have been joking as well), but I feel like it’s a brilliant idea. Too bad both sides are dead-set against what the other wants.

      “So “believing marriage is between a man and a women” by definition means that you believe “marriage is not between a man and another man.” Which is the definition of homophobic.” Last time I checked wikipedia, the definition of homophobia was “fear,hatred, and/or apathy towards gay people”, which strikes me as funny since “phobia” means fear.

  12. I was supprised that DC chose a writer as controversial as Card. Seems like there is no shortage of writers outside of comics who would have been interested in writing one of the most iconic characters ever and not had so much negative baggage brought with them.

    There are lots of artists, writers and comic creators who choose to be very public about the causes they believe in. Some incredibly controversial. That’s great that they want to do that, but they don’t get to cry foul when the stuff they wear on their sleeves affects sales and how fans view them. Same goes for any publishers or studios that chose to work with them. When you put that name on the cover of the book, you are selling that name as much as the content on the pages.

    When you wear stuff on your sleeve and even preach it, its fair game to be considered part of “your brand” as a creative.

    I think if Card’s position on these issues is something you can’t get past then you have every right to not stock it in your shop, or buy it and most certainly tell the publisher and your friends why you can’t support that work.

    Freedom of speech works as a two way street.

  13. StoreGuy says:

    The question that seems to be posing a stumbling block to some of the “Let’s burn it to the ground!” is “What about Bill Willingham?” People tend to always conveniently gloss over him, a guy whose response “Where are the gay characters in Fables?” was “There are no gay fairytales.” A guy who wrote a story in which a gay character jokes about being cured of being gay. A guy who wrote a story where one of the most intelligent characters in the DCU, Mr. Terrific, starts dropping some “street slang” into his dialogue for no reason. Here’s a guy with fairly outspoken politics, who no one is calling for a boycott of, who is currently collaborating with artists who are gay or at least very liberally minded. It doesn’t seem like the furor is evenly matched. Is it because Card comes from the “big world” of SciFi novels? Where he might actually have a fair bit of political weight in terms of donations that we’re afeared? Whereas poor ol’ Billy Wills is a simple comic booker? This isn’t to say people should be bringing pitchforks to bear. But egads, why is it just this one guy? Why is it when he writes a book for DC? I’m sure we could cast an eye over at Marvel and find some unpopular opinions rooting around the halls there, too.

    Boycott the book. That’s your right. Your store boycotting the book is their right as well. But pushing for the guy to be “shut out” of something because of his beliefs is baffling? Should you be pushed out of your job because of your beliefs? Should anyone? Instead of being an enlightened, adult view of the subject, we’re reducing things down to base mob mentality. “Get’em Steve-Dave!”

    (As well, I’m baffled at the selective memory on Ultimate Iron Man. “Oh, well, I knew he was anti-gay, just not *this* anti-gay.” This strikes as being, at best dishonest at worst, outright hypocritical.)

    • USPUNX USPUNX says:

      The new story arc of Fairest, which is plotted by Willingham, has a lesbian character as the main character.

      Also, Card didn’t become a member of the National Organization for Marriage until AFTER he wrote Ultimate Iron Man. He made anti-gay comments in the 90′s but actually retracted those a couple of years later. It wasn’t until he joined the National Organization for Marriage in 2009 that he resumed his public stance on homosexuality.

      I disagree with Card’s views completely but get you facts straight. Don’t make a case based on incorrect information.

    • Quinn says:

      Willingham is a perfect example. I buy both Fables and Fairest (the latter of which included a gay fairy tale, for the record). I enjoy his writing. Heck, I enjoyed Elementals, way back when. Politically, I imagine that we disagree on just about everything. I suspect we wouldn’t enjoy talking to each other very much. But I’ve loved Fables from the beginning. I don’t have to agree with someone’s politics to enjoy their art (a comment I’ve seen repeated over and over in this thread).

      I refuse to read Card’s work or support him financially because of his *actions*, not his beliefs. Card sits on the board of the National Organization for Marriage, a hate group that actively works against same-sex marriage both practically (through “get out the vote” misinformation campaigns) and financially (pouring millions of dollars into elections in states where the members are not residents). It’s like the dude on the airplane who slapped a crying baby and called it a racial slur. For the latter, the response ought to be: “you’re a douche and I refuse to talk to you.” For the former, he lost his job and will be going to jail. Beliefs vs. action. There is a difference. Do I think that losing my dollars will bankrupt Card? Of course not. He’ll still be fabulously wealthy. But my home and my life will be the better because his art, the sale of which actively funds hate-based activism, isn’t in it.

  14. Taral-DLOS says:

    I have one comment to make:

    Both volumes of Ultimate Iron Man were absolute garbage. The fact that they sold well astounds me.

    I got them from the library through inter-library loan (interests that my library didn’t have them) in a phase when I wanted to read the entire Ultimate line. I struggled through Ultimate Iron Man and Ultimate Iron Man II.

    They were such trash that subsequent Ultimate Iron Man stories retconned them out of existence. Their entire story was relegated to being an in-universe cartoon about Iron Man. Seriously.

    So I’m hoping that his new Superman stories bomb because they end up being such poor quality as Ultimate Iron Man was.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      I actually enjoyed the first “Ultimate Iron Man”, it was new and somewhat modern (at the time), like what the ultimate line should have been but varied. The second one I agree was pretty bad, it lost all of the political intrigue that I liked about the first one.

    • jonnyflash jonnyflash says:

      Um…Hello? Anybody there? Perhaps next time you might consider having, um, I don’t know…Iron Man…um, appear in a book entitled Ultimate Iron Man? Yes? Hello?

    • jonnyflash jonnyflash says:

      Read the previous comment in Jeff Goldblum’s voice.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      Oh, all that’s directed at me? Humph, well I guess there was a book featuring Ultimate Iron Man; “Ultimate Armor Wars” and “Ultimate Human”. I think OSC could’ve researched UIM from the Ultimates, but he still made something new with a basic concept of the character. The Ultimates are/were a happy medium between the new ideas and concept, but I still think more couldve been done to make the line more refreshing. I’m probably one of the few that believe USM shouldve been black from the start, instead of killing Peter and replacing him but hindsight is 20/20.

    • CaseyJustice CaseyJustice says:

      “I really hate that man…”

  15. DoubtingTom says:

    As has already been pointed out, two relevant things have happened since 2006, when Ultimate Iron Man came out: first, the Prop 8 battle in 2008 made NOM into national news, not just another face in the crowd of bigoted organizations, and second, Orson Scott Card joined their board in 2009.

    So, you know, it would have been kind of hard to protest Marvel for hiring a guy who was on the board of an openly bigoted organization that he hadn’t yet joined. There was commentary about his hiring and views, and maybe there was a protest or two; it’s not like any research was done to write this piece.

    That is, of course, the thing that sets Card apart from Bill Willingham, or Dave Sim, or John Byrne, or any of the other creators that people have been trotting out to say “omg ur a hypocrite look at these other conservatives and they make comix 2!”, including the Orson Scott Card of 2006. If Bill Willingham were on the board of the KKK, I think there might be a protest if he came to write mainstream superhero comics. Especially at a company who was simultaneously struggling with diversity and making overtures about being committed to it. I’m fine (and so are most of the people who’ve been protesting Card) with people having “views,” even if they’re detestable and disgusting. For those people, I’ll vote with my wallet. It’s people who are prominently and publicly taking actions on behalf of those views that I’d actively protest.

    Would spiking Card’s story help anyone? No, surely not. It wouldn’t help send the message that being a public bigot might actually have consequences. It wouldn’t help DC to show that their recent commitment to LGBT(etc.) characters like Batwoman and Alan Scott and Shining Knight has been more than just lip service and attempts to get some GLAAD awards to hang on the wall.

    No, instead it’s better for everyone to do nothing. DC should go on and publish the book, because they never pull or change titles for lesser reasons like not wanting Superman to be friends with a Muslim or anything. Fans shouldn’t do anything, because any action is hypocrisy and besides no one’s going to be helped and we should tolerate intolerance and there’s no perfect solution and caring about things is stupid.

    If only there were some middle ground between “smash” (because a protest is totally equivalent to violent action) and “obstinate apathy.”

    • John42 John42 says:

      Totally agree. A lot written here feels to me a black-and-white criticism of black-and-white thinking. To equate people who upset about OSC to the people upset about Peter Parker is to equate someone actively working to harm real people to the temporary half-death of a fictional character.

  16. OSC wants to take away the few human rights that I have and calls me a genetic freak so of course I don’t want him to be employed by DC. I hope the same thing that happens to Mel Gibson is gonna happen to him.

    “You don’t want to be discriminated, so you shouldn’t discriminate against hateful bigots” is not something I agree with. I don’t even have to think about this. DC should fire him and the “ender’s game” movie should never happen. If he would discriminate any other “minority” as openly and as strongly as he does and work towards taking away their human rights there wouldn’t even be a discussion about whether he SHOULD be fired or not. That discussion would be about HOW FAST he’s gonna get fired.

    That being said, I read his “abyss” novelization when I was a child and it’s really good, much better than the film. I acknowledge that he is a talented writer. I also acknowledge that he’s a hateful bigot working on putting me back in the closet or jail so I “kinda” think that is the more important thing.

  17. John42 John42 says:

    Outrage over bigotry and outrage over avengers arena are two entirely different things.

  18. jams jams says:

    The apathy towards standing up against OSC’s work is the same apathy towards bigotry that has homosexuals STILL fighting for basic rights.

    Can people please grow spines and tand up for equality for everyone? Not buying OSC’s book will not end homophodia or bigotry but he is an awful person and should not be supported.

    There enough mediocre Superman stories out there, spend your money on something not linked to such archaic world views.

  19. bigben2012 says:

    So other creators should fall with him because of Orson Scott Card has done? I want to read Chris Samnee’s Superman story!

    • jams jams says:

      Don’t be naive. First of all, Chris Sprouse is drawing and if you really want to support him, buy some of his other work.

    • bigben2012 says:

      But I want to see these creators take on Superman. I’m not gonna pass on this just cause one writer happens to be apart of something I detest.

    • CaseyJustice CaseyJustice says:

      The stories will be released individually online before being collected, like the Batman material of the past year. You can pick and choose which stories to buy that way!

    • jams jams says:

      That’s exactly why you should pass. These artists will make other work but here you have an opportunity to make a statement with your dollar. Some things are more important than reading a comic.

  20. USPUNX USPUNX says:

    Many people on here have called what Card does “art.” And that’ fine, I personally believe comics are absolutely an artform. But if you agree with that, if you believe comics are an artform, then you cannot enjoy his comics without acknowledging his beliefs. Crafts only become elevated to art when they have meaning, when they have context. Without meaning and context they are simply crafts. Creative yes, but art no. By definition, true art cannot be divorced from the beliefs and ideas of the artist who created it. So in order for Card to be an artist it must be acknowledged that his beliefs helped to form the art he has created. So just understand that if you believe Card is an artist then you are acknowledging the legitimacy of his beliefs. I’m not saying you personally agree with them by calling him an artist, but you are helping to give them legitimacy.

    • skrulldave skrulldave says:

      I disagree, heck it seems like half of most artist are either crazy, alcoholics, drug users, or whatever else. I may not like their opinions or lifestyle, but I might enjoy looking at, listening to, or reading what they produce. I’m just saying you can enjoy someone’s art without acknowledging or agreeing with their beliefs. Art can exist without knowing what the artist believes in. There are just too many artist, musicians, etc. to know what all those people believe in, yet their artwork is still legit and exist.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      Also not buying an “artist’s” work is not always an effective strategy. Ayn Rand died penniless but still converted tons of people to Objectivism.

  21. jonnyflash jonnyflash says:

    What about the public record political contributions of Disney & Time Warner, or of individual comic book creators?

    Should there be some kind of vetting for political appropriateness for all creators & companies? If so, who decides what level is appropriate?

    Why was there not a similar level of protest over “Holy Terror?” I remember a few sputterings, but nothing serious.

    The best way to protest the book is not to buy it.

  22. cubman987 cubman987 says:

    Ugh, I hate knowing stuff like this….I love Ender’s Game, and knowing this doesn’t change my opinion of the book, but it still sucks knowing the guy who wrote it has such a different beliefs than my own.

  23. Love comics, always on the verge of hating the community. Whether it’s the complete rudeness and disdain expressed by comic fans towards creators who are trying their best, or the complete left wing attitude where everyone who isn’t is an uneducated bigot, I find myself unable to identify with almost anyone within the comics fandom. It’s a shame, maybe someday people can figure out that those with an opposing opinion aren’t the bigots, idiots, terrible writers, and so on. In the mean time, I’ll make my pull lists and keep to myself.

    • This has nothing to do with somebody having an “opposing opinion”. It’s about the actions a hateful bigot is taking towards discriminating people and taking away their human rights. That is neither “having an opposing opinion” nor is it “a creator trying his best”. It’s somebody trying his worst.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      Admit it tho, even if he wasnt on that board and just said “I don’t believe in gay marriage” he would still be called a bigot and homophobe. To me that says that “worse” is not about Levels of degree.

    • And you’re exactly what I’m talking about. “actions of a hateful bigot”. I don’t hate homosexuals but I don’t agree with gay marriage either. Your way isn’t always right, and just because Orson Scott Card doesn’t support gay marriage doesn’t make him a hateful bigot either. Those are labels people put on him because they think gay marriage should be legal.

    • jams jams says:

      No sorry you’re wrong. People should be treated equally PERIOD. People who oppose that are ARE bigots.

    • jams jams says:

      Also, you don’t hate homosexuals? Oh good, you just think they should be denied basic rights because of what an ancient book said? Should we be stoning people too? I feel like we’re not stoning enough people anymore.

    • @Jams And you’re welcome to feel that way. In the end I’ll still have my wife and biological children. I’ll have a good job, a house, and a great life. I’ll do as I please, gladly buying things I want and going places I want, not allowing the opinions of others to dictate it. I’ll eat delicious chicken(not very often) from chick-fil-a, buy a superman book if I want to, and hey, I’ll even buy comics written by those who might hate Mormons, and all will be well…regardless if you think I’m a bigot or not. I win, no matter what.

  24. John42 John42 says:

    To say, as some have, that this movement threatens OSC’s livelihood is pretty silly. I don’t think he’ll starve without that 11 page comic book check.

    • IthoSapien IthoSapien says:

      I think it’s sad that this article will crack 200 posts which will mainly consist of “OSC’s a hateful bigot” or “”freedom of speech only works if you agree with me!”. Politics man, flipping politics.

    • jams jams says:

      Pretty sure no one is saying that. It may not affect him financially but if those who believe in equality do not buy the issue, it demonstrates at least to DC, that a lot of consumers will not support a homophobic writer and they should look elsewhere for talent.

  25. Josh Flanagan Josh Flanagan (@jaflanagan) says:

    Hey all. We sort of broke our own rules here, with the no politics/religion rule we have. And the good news is that most of you are behaving commendably, which is quite a feat on the comics internet. Or any internet.

    Well, call us cautious, but we’re going to get out while the getting is good, and close the comments before things can get out of hand and we just have to delete everything. Thanks for the discussion, and let’s get back to comics.