(@keithisaWIP) has shared a Tweet with you: “GailSimone: @JimLee @gailsimone leave the gay characters out of Firestorm. You do still have many readers who consider that a sin.” –http://twitter.com/GailSimone/status/109143002492047360
I said earlier that I don’t want this to be a place for arguments and I’m probably going to destroy that idea with this post.
I follow a few writers on twitter. One is a dc comic book writer named gail simone. Recently, she wrote the new firestorm comic. Me? I’m waiting for her first issue writing batgirl. So I read this tweet to her today and I just felt like I should respond.
There are two things I want to discuss. Neither item is about the morality of homosexuality.
It is disheartening to me when people (especially christians) are disrespectful for the sake of morality and when we dictate to a creative mind how they should be creative.
I don’t know if the person in the above tweet is a christian. I have heard such things from other christians and I’ve probably said it once or twice myself. I question its real effectiveness in curtailing sin when we go around declaring a thing or a work unwholesome to the artist. I think statements like the one above are more hurtful than helpful.
How should a christian respond when they see sin in the secular world? I find 1 peter 3:15, particularly useful for it says we are to speak of the hope that we have in Christ with gentleness and respect.
Telling an artist that they can’t paint with a certain color or a writer that a certain character archetype is forbidden isn’t just wrong, its a travesty. Just because I disagree with an artist does not mean their work is without value or merit to me. I do find some art pointless, don’t get me wrong, but its usually because my definition of art itself is different than the artist’s.
Its not my place to tell gail simone or any writer how or what to write. I’m in a critique group and I’ve learned a long time ago the difference between constructive criticism and well… opinion. Once in college I remember a group of christian writers having a serious discussion about whether swearing was ok in the work of a christian writer. That was a very heated discussion. I have used the occassional off-color word once or twice in a story. Well, not me , a character. Some won’t see a difference, but I do. People around me use language differently than I do. Sometomes a character will do the same; doing otherwise is a disservice to the character and the story. Now how that is done is another discussion on its own.
I haven’t read the comic. I don’t know if the characters are part of some “evil liberal plot in the name of tolerance or inclusiveness.” I have read a rather brash review of it. And it makes me sad to see such a review.
I keep asking myself questions like: how do I explain to my daughter the new reality of our culture? How do I explain what the bible says about marital relationships in a world where there are more parents who aren’t married than are. Or how a classmate can have two moms or two dads? It will be especially difficult when she is young an apt to repeat things verbatim or close to it. I can already see the parent-teacher conference conversation starting with, “Your daughter had some very interesting things to tell Mary about her parents….”
It will be equally hard to put the hurtful things christians say “for the lord” to others in the right light for her clearly.
Is there a way to do that so she will be both moral AND loving? I aim to find one.
Gail if you do read this, I do wish you find the same hope that I have in christ jesus if you have not already. And, instead of praying the gay out of your book I would ask where are the christian characters in this new and inclusive dc universe?