Recently, there’s been another outrage outburst in the comics community. A woman criticized a sorta shitty comic cover, and naturally, she was threatened with rape. It feels…
Ulisas Farinas has written a pair of impassioned articles about the normalization of depictions of violence against women in comics and, more recently, underlining the self-delusion inherent in the recent posturing made in response to the rape threats against Janelle Asselin, a comics culture writer who had the temerity to criticize a Teen Titans comic book cover for being dumb (heads up, True Believers, those comics are dumb!)
It’s an undisciplined but honest pair of articles, and he makes some thoughtful points, like
As an adult, I see men all around me, who write violence, who draw violence, who have never been infected (sic) by violence. Most women you know, have been victims of some sort of violence from a man. But where is Batman and the battered woman? Where is Captain America and the saddest conversation you can have with a girlfriend? Where is all the heartache, the pain, the disgust and the powerlessness?
And on the … well, christ, on the pointlessness of trying to shame bad behavior out of folks…
A man tells a woman he’ll rape her because its the only thing left where he can still have power. You ain’t gonna shame no dude into stop doing that. Shame is exactly why he does it. Dude knows exactly how offensive he is being. And if it offends his dude friends? They think, “That’s cause they’re little bitches too, so fuck them. I bet they can’t get laid, so they just pretend to be feminists to hang out with chicks.”
They don’t know what rape is, except from what they’ve learned from TV, comics and movies. They know that its extremely shocking, and so they can always rely on it to end the conversation.
As a reward for writing these articles, Ulisas been gifted with a lovely bouquet of “UNH ACTUALLY MEN GET RAPED TOO YOU KNOW!” responses, with such suddenness and ferocity that you’d think these guys were competing for the Gold in Missing the Point (I suppose I can inoculate myself against the same thing by adding: he never said they didn’t). He’s been given the greatest gift of all, being proven right by nimrods.
You know that joke – a woman is crying because she’s just received word that her sister and nieces died in a boating accident, and a guy walking by interrupts her; “Uh, excuse me, but men drown too, you know.”