On one level, like Marvel's announcement of Northstar's impending marriage
and DC's teasers about a character coming out of the closet
are designed to stir up interest and controversy, so it's not much of a surprise when the reactionaries step up to take their shots. Sure enough, "One Million Moms
" -- an anti-gay advocacy group with a membership somewhere in the high dozens -- has decided to make Marvel and DC their latest targets
in the ongoing campaign against anyone who acknowledges that homosexuals do, in fact, exist.
At this point, this is nothing new for OMM, a subset of the American Family Association, which in 2010 was classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center
. They've been at this for a while, taking on previous targets like famous nice person Ellen DeGeneres and, in what might actually be their least successful campaign to date, Archie Comics
. And much like their arguments in those cases -- in which they voiced the harrowing fear that you could be turned to a life of sapphic sin merely by seeing an ad for JC Penney -- their case against Marvel and DC is downright hilarious.
Or it would be, if it wasn't, you know, rooted in a blinding hatred for actual people.
Here are the high points from their website
DC Comics, owned by Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, has decided that one of their beloved superheroes will be homosexual. Who will they choose; Batman, Superman, Flash, Green Lantern, Plastic Man, or another one of their characters that children look up to?
If I can be allowed to interrupt for a second: Your kid looks up to Plastic Man?
And you're not worried that little Tyler or Hunter or Cody or Tucker or whatever is going to take up a life of crime, get splashed with chemicals, and then start walking around in what's essentially a long-sleeved ladies' bathing suit engaging in hijinx? it's the gay
thing that you're concerned with?
Sure. Let's move on.
Children desire to be just like superheroes. Children mimic superhero actions and even dress up in costumes to resemble these characters as much as possible. Can you imagine little boys saying, "I want a boyfriend or husband like X-Men?"
Actually, I can't imagine that, but only because most of the children I know have a slightly better handle on grammar.
At first glance, this seems to be the single dumbest point that OMM (yeah you know them) has made to date: the idea that reading comics could turn you gay
. Now, I'm no doctor, but I'm pretty sure that's not how it works. I mean, I've been reading comics for my entire life and I've never once been able to fly or pop adamantium claws out of my knuckles. Hell, I've never even traveled around the world learning to be a detective, and that's something I could probably do, if I hadn't spent all my money on comics.
But I have to admit that there's a core of truth to that idea. I'm a firm believer in the idea that super-hero comics can
teach you something. They just can't teach you to be gay.
What they teach you is that you should use your abilities to help the people around you and make the world a better place rather than just throwing your weight around to be a bully. And they teach you that when the world hates and fears someone just because they're different, it's the world that's wrong.
No wonder they don't want their kids reading them.