When a friend of ours does something particularly boneheaded, say, getting back together with a disastrous ex, that’s usually how we start the conversation. Just imagine a lot of headshaking.
As I said in the last quick post, I really should know better than to try to read any interview, press release or article about Joe Quesada without a fifth of whiskey at hand. Seriously, I want to create the Joe Quesada Drinking Game. Every time he says something egregiously sexist, or just plain stupid about women, take a shot. Congratulations, you’ll be a career alcoholic in no time.
Ok, in the press release in question, Mr. Quesada cites P!nk’s album covers as a reason Marvel’s not sexist, and further, we’re supposed to imply that because he listens to a Feminist musician like P!nk, that means he’s not sexist.
Mr. Quesada, I read the Koran as part of a Grad level survey of religions class, this does not make me Muslim. Nor does the fact that I also read the Upanishads make me Hindu. Nor does having read the Bible make me Christian.
As with religion and many other life and ethical choices we face, there is much more to being Feminist that listening to Sarah McLachlan and Ani DeFranco. Part and parcel of being Feminist (for men and women) is realizing that women are still neither legally nor socially equal in this society. We are paid less for the same work, our bodies are a warzone over whether or not we should or should not have children, abort, get sterilized, etc… The other part of being a Feminist is working to try to overcome those inequities and doing something about it, as much as you can. Whether it’s blogging, marching, volunteer work, spreading the word, performing at charitable functions, attending those functions, calling people out on their bullshit, whatever.
Also, I think you insult P!nk when you equate a strong woman like her, who has written songs like “Respect,” “Stupid Girls” and “Dear Mr. President” with wank fodder images drawn by perpetual adolescents.
Totally equals this:
For the love of all that’s holy…
Also, Mr. Quesada’s response to accusations of sexism in Marvel comics is to say:
“If you’re [a] Marvel reader and truly feel we’re sexist, then why are you reading our books? Now, perhaps you’re not a Marvel reader, then if that’s the case, I’m not quite sure what you’re criticizing if you don’t read our books?”
So, let me get this straight. If you are reading Marvel and criticizing them, you shouldn’t be reading them. And if you don’t read them, you… No, wait, it doesn’t make any more sense the longer I look at it. (*takes shot*)
I have said it before and I’ll say it again: I love comics. I love superhero comics. I don’t want to be pissed off every time I open a comic book, I want to be entertained. And this “well, if you don’t like it, just leave” attitude the Big Two seem to have is going to shoot them in the foot. Because eventually we will just leave. We’ll take our money and go home, and so will the guys who have grown up enough to realize, “Hey, this sexism shit really is toxic.” When the Husband What Rules and I first got together, he would occasionally rib me for calling something sexist bullshit. But over the years he’s come to realize, I’m right about most of it. And honestly, because he’s newer to the realization, he catches shit that I’ve become inured to through years of being female in this society. Honestly, he feels I should just give up on the Big Two entirely. And frequently and loudly announces this every time I pick up an issue and the eye rolling starts.
But I don’t want to give up comics. I want them to evolve with their audience.
Mr. Quesada has also stated that he can’t be sexist because he has a daughter, and I assume he loves her. Well, Joe, is the Divas image really what you want your daughter to think beauty is? Is that what you think is heroic for women and what she should strive to emulate? Breast emphasizing poses and porn face? Somehow I doubt that highly. Or at I least I hope not. Every woman out there is someone’s daughter. You didn’t create the toxic environment your daughter and other girls are going to have to navigate, but you’re contributing to it and the sooner you realize that, the better off we’ll all be.