The Mutant Revolution at RCCC 2017

Listen to the live episode here!


49 comments

  1. Some photoshop Wiz should make a picture of trump as Mojo.

    My vote would be to keep political talk out of me X-PODz.

  2. BHunt says:

    Jay. Listen. You do NOT get to make assumptions about me based upon my appearance or your shallow perception of my upbringing. In your attempt to take sole ownership of the themes and metaphors in the X-Men, while making little effort to hide your judgement and derision of (OH NO!) a white, working-class American male, you have missed the point of the story entirely. You simply do not have the market cornered on “other”. The nuance of the term gets drowned out in that echo chamber. You made it clear in your rambling musings at this panel that feelings of alienation or disenfranchisement from a “WASP-y guy” like myself (yeah, go revisit — straight derision) aren’t as valid as those same feelings from someone else who better fits your personal idea of “other”. I’d point out the irony if the whole enterprise weren’t so shameful on your part. Open it up or you’re part of the problem which you poorly attempted to better identify to your audience.

    • Paula says:

      The fact that you view someone pointing out that non-cis/white/male/hetero/binary/neurotypical people have it harder *in that specific medium* when it is patently, obviously and painfully true as “derision,” so much so that you’re unable to present your argument in a way that doesn’t involve being a patronizing jerk says a lot about your privileged position and what you think you’re entitled to. Just because someone who doesn’t match your metrics chooses to focus on their own experiences – which was the entire point of that discussion – doesn’t mean that they view your experience as any less valid. They just choose not to focus on it, because they have no way to speak to it.

      TL;DR: It’s not always about you, dude.

    • Sall says:

      You aren’t being derided by not being highlighted for once. Sit the heck down.

    • Miles says:

      No one’s taking sole ownership – there’s room in the metaphor for all of us, white guys like you and me included. It’s important, though, to recognize that some folks get much less *on-page* representation than we historically have, and that’s an oversight that runs counter to the themes of X-Men. If we add more non-white/queer/trans/etc. characters to X-Men in particular or comics in general, that just adds, it doesn’t subtract.

      More importantly: outside the page, we have it easier than folks who are less the cultural “default”, and X-Men teaches us that that’s important to recognize and use for good. We simply don’t experience the same level of cultural oppression that more marginalized groups do. Nightcrawler has it harder than Kitty Pryde, straight up. Does that mean Kitty’s not a mutant? No. But it does mean she needs to remember that while what she’s dealing with is valid, other people are dealing with that *plus more*. And sometimes that means taking a breath and knowing that the frustration of more oppressed groups generally isn’t about us more privileged folks *as individuals*, it’s about the societal forces that have made our differences more socially acceptable than theirs.

      • Tyler Thorstrom says:

        Thanks for being such a positive person, Miles! I am also a white middle class American Male and listening to this episode I started to get a little defensive until I realized I wasn’t being attacked at all. When I thought about it, the message I got out of you and Jay is that we all need to be kinder to each other and it would be cool to have more diversity in comics. I can get behind that for sure.
        My favorite thing you both encouraged me to do is to read things written about characters that have a different world view and experience from my own. This helps cultivate empathy and understanding. I think if more comics creators did this, more diverse comic book characters would likely be introduced.
        Outside of comics, are there any audiobooks you would recommend?

  3. David says:

    How did I never think of Trump as Mojo before? Horrifyingly perfect analogy.

    (And excellent rebuttal to the “keep politics out of the X-Men” types. Though I fear they’re a stubborn lot.)

  4. Seniorsenior says:

    So after hearing the podcast and seeing your Twitter I have to ask, are you advocating people violently assault others over their free speech? Because showing up to places all dressed the same with masks and assaulting peaceful demonstrators is fascism by any other name. People who use violence and intimidation to prevent other people from expressing themselves are the bad guys.

    • Jay says:

      Buddy, I’ve got some bad news for you about superheroes…

      But if you’re asking us if we feel that explicit threats of violent genocide should generally be taken seriously, yes.

      • Seniorsenior says:

        Superheroes aren’t just showing up and beating up on someone because they are saying mean things. The X-Men didn’t just show up and try to fight Striker in god loves man kills because of his opinions and speech. They fought him because he kidnapped people and tried to shoot Kitty. That was one of the main themes of god loves man kills, that people have the right to be assholes and say mean things but others don’t have the right to assault them to silence them because they disagree.

        • Paula says:

          Yes, because advocating violence and murder of people they’re against is “saying mean things”. Are you seriously saying that we should just “agree to disagree” with the people who want to kill us?

          • Seniorsenior says:

            People have the right to say abhorrent things. Should we beat every trans person who says “die cis scum”? The same tactics and laws you use to prevent the speech of others can be used again on you. I’m not saying you shouldn’t carry a big stick in case someone gets violent. I’m saying that until he physically attacks you it isn’t acceptable to hit him with that stick.

            People have freedom of expression no matter how terrible you find their particular expression.

            • Paula says:

              Yeah, have fun in your fortress of moral superiority and non-violent protests. I’m going to be over here, supporting the people whose lives are threatened every day thanks to people like you. And yes, I’m going to help them defend themselves, no matter how you and your ilk try to paint defending yourself in the face of outright threats as “unnecessary violence”. But I guess if you’re “safe” it’s fine and dandy to sit on the fence and pretend like none of it affects you, and preach bullshit about aggression from both sides.

              • Seniorsenior says:

                If you really are worried about these people affecting violent change via the government, then maybe the government has too much power.

                I don’t think it is acceptable to normalize the use of violence to prevent expression nor do I think it is acceptable for the government to curtail rights.

                If you can do this to group A, what is to stop someone from deciding group B needs a beating? Should Christians go beat up atheists who say they want to get rid of religion? Should Catholics assault people who want to bring down their church?

                • Paula says:

                  Let me guess, you totally support the conservative people who want to shut down Pride Parades and take away LGBT rights, and control women’s reproductive rights? Because they’re just “expressing an opinion”? And you’d totally defend the Nazi fucks who go out on the streets and beat innocent people who don’t immediately agree with them when confronted? And the bullies in schools who drive gay kids to suicide? And the misogynist douchebags who want to take away women’s rights and put them back in the kitchen? After all, they’re just expressing an opinion, right? Who are we, the people affected by all this bullshit, to say “no, you can’t say that”?

                  Let me tell you something: their freedom of expression ENDS the second it starts to infringe on my right to LIVE. And no, I can’t just “not go there”/”log off the internet”/”move somewhere else” or any other bullshit like that. Yes, they have the right to say “mean things” (JFC, the absolute fucking lack of perspective it takes to use a phrase like that in this discussion, it boggles the mind), but we have the right to say “fuck you, you don’t get to say that shit to me”. And we have the right to protect our rights and our freedoms and our goddamn lives. This isn’t about your precious fence-sitting, centrist whataboutism bullshit. This is about OUR LIVES, and it would really behoove you to make an effort to rub three brain cells together and understand that.

                  • Seniorsenior says:

                    I’m a gun owner. I love guns. Should I go to the next gun control rally and smash a brick on someone’s head? They are trying to take away my rights. Honestly in my opinion the 3 most fucked up rights someone can try to take away are your rights to speech, guns, and property.

                    So is my violence against gun control advocates different than yours?

                    • Paula says:

                      Oh please, nobody’s trying to take your gun. If you have a permit, if you’re willing to go through the procedures, you get to keep your precious gun. You people spew your bullshit about “one good guy with a gun”, but when someone who is clearly not a “good guy” gets their hands on a gun and goes on a rampages, you tuck your tails between your legs and say nothing, like the despicable cowards you are.

                      I believe in gun control – if you can pass the strict checks and controls in place, fine, have all the dick extensions you want to have, go to town. But do not pretend for a second that your ability to own a gun is somehow threatened by people saying “hey, maybe we should make sure these people can actually be responsible gun owners who won’t go to fucking McDonalds with an AR-15 on their back.”

                      Yes, your violence against gun control advocates is different than mine. You not having a gun doesn’t endanger your life. Me not having the right to live, to make choices that affect my ability to live? Very much puts me in danger of BEING DEAD. You not having a gun just means you have to live like the rest of us, relying on police and the military to protect you lily-livered ass.

                    • Jay says:

                      Do you seriously not see an appreciable difference between advocating gun control and advocating genocide?

                • Devin says:

                  If someone were to say, “Let’s kill all Christians. In fact, I’m going to wear the insignia of a group that’s murdered millions of Christians and at one point in the last century almost succeeded in doing it worldwide. Not only that, but wearers of that symbol are currently harming and murderering christians”…then yes. Yes, I’m cool with that asshole getting punched in the face. Punch him 24/7. Punch him when he’s taking a nap. Punch him when he’s at a play. Punch him when he’s eating an ice cream cone. Because his end goal is the deaths of millions. And that’s not an idea we get to experiment with, because there’s no reason we ever should.

                  But if you’re trying to compare it to some gays trying to buy a cake from a bakery or someone mocking Jesus or someone critiquing the long tradition of sexism in the Catholic church…well, that’s nothing like this. At all.

                  You know what dude? Maybe care about someone else’s free speech rights aside from Nazis. Maybe look at the CNN newscaster the white house has called to be fired for calling Trump a White supremacist. Maybe look at the various peaceful protesters who’ve been beaten or arrested the past few years. Maybe look at the countless black citizens who’ve lost their lives due to police overreacting and having no deescalation training. Maybe shed some tears for them before you keep lamenting for Nazis who’s literal end goal is the deaths of millions.

                  • Devin says:

                    Oops…ESPN. Mea culpa.

                  • Seniorsenior says:

                    Oh I think peaceful protesters should open carry because police haven’t really violently assaulted armed protesters since ruby ridge and wacko.

                    I honestly advocate anyone I know who is part of a marginalized group to buy a gun and get a permit to carry if they are comfortable with it. Not saying you have to carry a gun all the time everywhere, but armed people are more protected than those who aren’t.

                    And I don’t really care how terrible is, I’m going to defend people’s right to speak. Except Curt Schilling, he got fired from ESPN for stuff he said on Twitter, but before that he doxxed 2 guys on Twitter for being assholes and ruined their lives so him getting fired is funny.

            • Jason Enright says:

              Freedom of speech is a legal classification. However it does not take into account moral or ethical concerns. Does someone have a legal right to walk the streets calling for my death because I am queer, yes they legally do. Is it moral or ethical? NO. Does that legal right protect them from consequences? NO. and that does not make them morally or ethically correct. I may choose to respond to them by punching their lights out or shouting at them. Now being someone who is lawful good, I would choose to stay and suffer the legal consequences for assault but I would proudly suffer those consequences to do the morally and ethically correct thing which is silencing whoever is calling for my death.

              Yes, the same tactics could be used to silence lgbt people for exercising their freedom of speech, but hey guess what, it already is. Transgender people and gay people are killed just for existing in public even when they are not actively protesting. It is politically acceptable by half of our country to try to legislate away my rights to to life liberty and happiness because I’m queer. I am currently fighting to keep my healthcare because I’m partially deaf and asthmatic. I spend everyday just fighting to exist.

              We mutants spend every single day looking over shoulders and fighting for our very right to just exist. So yeah when people walk the streets exercising their right to call for my death, I’m going to fight back hard, because while this is just a fun thought experiment, a game for you. It is my life on the line.

              Final thought, remember that the American Revolution was illegal. They all committed treason. They decided that at a certain point the moral and ethical outeighed the legal. They fought with guns and rocks and everything they could.

              At a certain point, everyone has to decide whether they want to do the moral thing or the legal thing. That decision just comes sooner for those of us with targets on our backs.

              • Seniorsenior says:

                @Paula
                A. Where do you live where you need a permit to buy a gun? Those aren’t a thing for long guns in literally any state.

                B. How do you not see what you just said as being the same bigoted stuff other say? What if someone said homosexuals should only be allowed to be in civil unions. Or that you needed a permit to be trans?

                @Jay
                Honestly I do not. You can disagree with me, but the way I see it is bad things happen to people who can’t protect themselves. You don’t see riot cops bashing an open carry or tea party protest.

                @ Jason, if you want to go fight the government I’m totally down. I dislike the government on principle alone. I still don’t find it is ethical or moral to assault people for the beliefs because I don’t think any one person can decide what beliefs people should or should not be allowed to say.

                • Devin says:

                  “You don’t see riot cops bashing an open carry or tea party protest.”

                  Because systemic racism.

                  Keep in mind, a black man was shot once for holding a toy gun that COULD have been a real gun. Black men are routinely shot on the suspicion that they MAY have a gun or may be reaching for guns.

                  Holding a gun is protection if you’re white or with a mainly white group. If BLM were ot march armed, they’d be slaughtered wholesale.

                  • Seniorsenior says:

                    There are black open carry groups. They don’t get shot. Though You do bring up a good point. Pretty much all gun control in the USA is designed to take away the basic human gun rights of the poor and minorities.

                • Miles says:

                  whatdid

                  You seriously think gun control and genocide are comparable? I think you’re on the wrong web site, buddy. Take that shit elsewhere. Banned.

  5. Casey says:

    The mutant revolution will be telepathicly broadcast

  6. Jason Enright says:

    Thank you Jay and Miles for this episode. It really inspired me. I had fallen a little lax politically because the political situation is so depressing right now, but am feeling fired up again and ready to fight. Your art is especially important because your art is political. Keep shouting loud and helping us all stay in the fight.

  7. Elliott Kay says:

    This was a great episode, and though I was waaaay in the back, I am glad to know my cheering voice in the crowd was any small part of it.

  8. Tyler Thorstrom says:

    Please forgive me if I have had my head in the sand, but who is calling for the genocide of the LGBT community? I am concerned and confused.

    • Jay says:

      Implicitly, anyone sporting Nazi iconography (literally the origin of the pink triangle as a LGBTQ symbol); but there’s also shit like a VP who explicitly supports conversion therapy (which I’m gonna let you google for yourself); the epidemic murder of trans women and the fact that people–including juries–still treat trans panic like an acceptable defense FOR same; and a lot of intensely violent and varyingly explicitly genocidal anti-LGBT rhetoric from the far right. (Again, I’m not gonna do citations, because it’s 8 AM here and sifting through evidence that a significant bloc of people either want you dead or don’t really care is an incredibly shitty way to start the day; but if you’re inclined, this stuff should be fairly googleable.)

      • Tyler Thorstrom says:

        Thanks for giving me a lot to think about today. I did about an hour of googling followed by an hour of processing what I had read and trying to think of more things to look up, another hour on sites like politifact, gladd.org, lgbtbar.org, and lots of Wikipedia entries.

        My eyes were opened in many ways.

        Let me start by saying that I agree with you that if you look for hate, you can find it. I vehemently disagree with anyone spewing anger or threats at the LGBT community. It is closed minded bigotry at its ugliest.
        That being said, I feel that things are getting better every day. From polls I found, the hate groups like NeoNazis are shrinking and the ones that aren’t are now overwhelmingly outnumbered by citizens of understanding.
        In the only cases I found involving gay/trans panic, all attackers were found guilty and sentenced to life in prison. Juries don’t buy that trash.
        In the 27 trans killings worldwide last year (each a horrible act), I saw none of the accounts state that the crime had been motivated by the fact that the victim was trans.
        Pence’s quote on his website (that the administration has tried desperately to distance itself from) was:
        “Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.”
        I disagree with spending government money this way for the same reason I am against government spending on abortion and contraception. Get the government out of my bedroom!!!!
        However he was saying it was for individuals seeking counseling. I don’t think he is advocating forced reeducation.
        So, again, hate speech: protected (until you use threats you could conceivably carry out, then you can get charged with a crime), but reprehensible and not ok!!!!
        But overall (not speaking to your own personal experience or someone else’s) I think things are improving 🙂
        Please let me know where to do more research or if I got anything wrong!

        • Devin says:

          Hey man,

          You seem like you genuinely want to learn, so two things I would like to comment upon before heading off to work:

          “In the 27 trans killings worldwide last year (each a horrible act), I saw none of the accounts state that the crime had been motivated by the fact that the victim was trans.”

          Hate crimes are notoriously difficult to prove (again, lots of stuff on this if you Google). The victims can’t often talk about the incident, and there are not always witnesses. Furthermore, perpetrators aren’t always going to shout out their motives as they do these actions. It’s a similar issue with allegations of other discrimination – perpetrators may be giving other reasons or may not even consciously know they’re acting on those reasons.

          “Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.”
          I disagree with spending government money this way for the same reason I am against government spending on abortion and contraception. Get the government out of my bedroom!!!!
          However he was saying it was for individuals seeking counseling. I don’t think he is advocating forced reeducation.”

          Stuff isn’t always so black and white, once again. For now, there’s no one capturing adult gays and forcing them into conversion therapy. Kids it’s trickier. Or even emotionally vulnerable people. My fiance’s parents were awful to him when he came out (he’s from Indiana and they still live there). If he was still living at home, not in a relationship, and therefore a little more emotionally and financially dependent on his parents…who knows. A lot of people will do a lot of things to be “at peace” with their family or their community.

          And, ultimately, the bigger issue with conversion therapy is…it’s not therapy. It’s torture.

          https://www.buzzfeed.com/patrickstrudwick/this-is-what-happens-when-you-undergo-gay-conversion-therapy?utm_term=.dfQwmJkRR#.evXzD7KRR

          It’s the equivalent of me selling pills that I say will help you lose weight but actually have tape worms in them. Or the killer vaccine from The Third Man. It’s not only not effective, but it’s incredibly dangerous and being used almost exclusively on very emotionally vulnerable people.

          So this isn’t even a typical “Mutant Cure” arugment where queers point to the fact that we may not want to be cured*. It’s the episode of the animated series where’s there’s no cure and it just turns you into a horseman of Apocalypse.

          *As a gay man, a mentally ill person, and a cancer survivor who identifies as disabled as a result of both that and some chemo side effects, I have a lot of mixed feelings about lining up the “Mutant Cure” to one identity or fully condemning any mutant who’d want to be cured.

          • Tyler Thorstrom says:

            Thanks for taking me seriously. I really do want to understand. I know these are issues that I have been largely insulated against due to my upbringing. Not to say I was intentionally kept in the dark. My parents are awesome, world conscious individuals. Utah just isn’t inherently very diverse in the suburbs.
            You bring up good points.
            It’s not always obvious what a crimes motive was. Trans deaths can be underreported since the family may not identify them as such.
            I dislike the nationalist attitude of the current administration. I think we need to value all members of the human race equally.
            I feel for the idea of being vulnerable and apprehensive of counseling since it helps some and hurts others. Obviously it something that must be handled on a case by case basis. Not everyone who has similar feelings, has them for the same reason or should follow the same course with them.
            The Xmen make that issue very compelling with the mutant cure. It’s a good, if imperfect analogy.

          • Tyler Thorstrom says:

            I read the article on buzzfeed and while I agree with the reporter about the counseling he received (That woman deserved to lose her job and license) I feel a ban is overkill. It denies individuals experiencing same sex attraction the ability to legally talk to a counselor about it without the therapist risking losing their license. My mother in law had a huge family rift caused by a counselor who convinced her siblings that they had been abused when they hadn’t. Malpractice is a problem, but needs to be handled on a case by case basis.

            • Jay says:

              Except, you’re talking about an entire modality that’s clinically worthless, aggressively abusive, closely tied with communities that actively and aggressively discriminate against the populations it professes to “help,” and correlates with exceptionally high suicide rates. There’s individual malpractice, and there’s professionally sanctioned abuse, and *they are different things.*

              That another therapist also did something *else* unethical doesn’t mitigate that.

              And THAT’S ignoring the ethics of therapy with that particular goal in an environment where sexual and gender minorities are already subject to a lot of both social and state-sanctioned discrimination. Offering someone the option of accepting abusive, damaging “help” when the consequences for not accepting it can include losing family, community, housing, healthcare, employment, and *life* isn’t giving them a real choice. It’s coercive at best. It treats queerness and transness like crimes, with similar penalties and similarly revocation of choices.

              • Tyler Thorstrom says:

                Sorry Jay, I am trying to understand clearly what you are saying. Are you saying that there aren’t any individuals in the LGBT community who should have access to counseling if the goal of that counseling is to teach them to repress homosexual actions? And this is because counseling with that goal is universally detrimental to all persons who feel same sex attraction/transgender identity. That is the position we are talking about, right? And the organizations offering the counsel cannot be trusted because of past/current persecution of LGBT community. Am I hearing you correctly?

          • Jay says:

            This, yeah.

            It’s also worth noting the stuff that isn’t directly life-threatening but has similar levels of impact–for instance, bathroom bans; the current federal push for rollback of housing, healthcare, and employment protections for sexual and gender minorities; the executive order banning transgender military personnel; and so forth. Those look like red tape, but consider the actual ramifications, and how thoroughly they block our access to public life and spaces, income, housing, and basic human dignity and rights; and what kind of impact that kind of systematic and systemic marginalization might have on an already disproportionately vulnerable community.

            • Tyler Thorstrom says:

              If you are talking about anti discrimination policies, I agree that no one should deny someone housing, employment, or health care based on their gender identity or sexual orientation. I am hopeful for the day in the future when laws like theses will no longer be necessary, but we probably aren’t there yet.
              The bathroom situation could be solved with businesses installing more private stalls! I don’t want anyone to be able to see me through gaps between the doors regardless of who they’re attracted to!
              Unisex bathrooms are probably the best option in the end. IF we can get decently modest stalls!
              I think the fear of rape or molestation is unfounded and can be dealt with by the penal system if isolated incidents arise.

              • Jay says:

                I’ve been trying to pin down what I’m having trouble with in this thread, and I think I finally have a sense of it.

                Your intentions seem really good, you’re being very civil, and that’s great.

                But you’re also going into this assuming that the people you’re asking questions of don’t know what they’re talking about–that the relatively brief searches you’ve done put you in a position to challenge what for us are lifetimes of expertise and experience as parts of communities you’ve had relatively little contact with. I can’t speak for Devin, but–for instance–I’ve been following clinical and legal reporting around conversion therapy for more than twenty years; ditto, both social and legislated discrimination. When I go out, I have to gauge the extent to which my gender and the way people read it will affect my access to really basic public services and spaces. Characters who reflect my experiences in fiction? Almost always die, almost always violently, because that is how thoroughly our culture takes for granted the association between queerness and being a target of violence.

                What makes you think that you’re better positioned to make these calls than we are–to say “this seems kinda problematic but like it’s probably NBD,” to people who, again, are parts of the community directly impacted by it and are telling you “this seriously harms us”?

                You started this by asking a pretty innocuous question about threats against the LGBT community and acknowledging that this was pretty far out of your own bailiwick; and with every response, you’ve raised the bar higher. I don’t think you’re going to get an answer that satisfies you unless you can acknowledge that folks who are part of the communities you’re curious about are in fact the authorities on their own experiences. Does that make sense?

                • Tyler Thorstrom says:

                  It makes total sense and I meant no disrespect. Man! I wish we could have this conversation in person. I rarely make comments on message boards because inflection and other helps go out the window. I appreciate the time you have already taken from real work to chat with me! You guys have always been good to your listeners.
                  I would be dishonest if I didn’t acknowledge that part of my questioning was to push how deeply you’ve thought about the issues and get counter arguments to the thoughts that I have coming from my own background. Everyone (including myself) sees the world through the lens of their own experience. My lens of non exposure tends to diminish issues that I would expect to be inflated by those experiencing them on a daily basis.
                  I haven’t done a lot of research on this topic and will readily acknowledge I do not know as much about it as you do. I just get frustrated with rhetoric. When someone makes a strong claim for something, I prefer they back it with statistical evidence.
                  I am not trying to be antagonistic, just curious.
                  Especially when someone is calling for action to be done about a problem that could end in the activist being arrested.
                  Am I making sense?

                  • Tyler Thorstrom says:

                    I was looking for the delete comment button for my last response because it was made too hastily. But there doesn’t seem to be.

                    I was thinking hard about why I jumped in on this thread and I will try to express what the episode made me feel.

                    The world you painted bothered me for multiple reasons:
                    1. It is uncomfortable being reminded that some are suffering while I am in a very safe and positive environment if it means I might have to do something uncomfortable about it.
                    2. I really do believe that the majority of people are good and are not as bigoted as feared and that discrimination is at an all time low for the human race.
                    3. I love you. I have listened to every episode of your podcast, supported you on patron, and given you high fives at conventions. After a couple years, you feel like you know them (even though you don’t really) and I care about your happiness.

                    I made the mistake of thinking I could argue you into not being so hurt or angry. I am sorry. It was not being helpful.

                    Just know I am rooting for you and anyone going through the same kind of experiences whether because of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, or religion.

                    If you are ever in Utah, I’d be happy to take you and your wife out to lunch. Maybe we could even talk Xmen 🙂 and Miles is welcome, too

                    • Jay says:

                      Thanks for listening, and for taking the time to think things over and respond like this. It means a lot.

                      I think one of the hardest things about trying to wrap your mind around issues that don’t tend to be in your field of vision is that everyone’s first instinct is usually to try to contextualize them within their own frame of reference. And sometimes that instinct is incredibly productive–it’s basically the cornerstone of empathy–but with stuff like this, it can become a stumbling block to actually understanding.

                      Human stuff is really hard. =P

              • Devin says:

                Hey Tyler,

                Mainly replying to most recent posts but the SUPER THIN text lines bother me, so replying here.

                Anyway, yes to what Jay said. Including being a human being is hard.

                I totally get where you’re coming from. And I think what might be helpful to reconcile your wanting to believe that people at their core are mostly good and that things are improving with what Jay and I are talking about is what Jay and Miles talk about this episode: we need Xavier and Magneto. We DEFINITELY need to believe people are good and that we can reach them with reason and feelings and such and that ultimately we can have a better world. And we definitely need to believe that improvements have been made in some arenas or else the entire task of activism becomes a Sisyphean exercise (and we belittle the strides and sacrifices made by our predecessors).

                But we also need Magneto. Because, while I’m definitely enjoying some of the progress that’s been made, I know that I don’t speak for everyone. I know there are tons of people who still feel unsafe and attacked by their communities or the powers-that-be every day. And we need sometimes to get angry and speak out and raise some hell to make sure that they can live another day…and maybe even have a better future.

                So I think one thing to keep in mind as you educate yourself (and yeah, if you’re ever in LA, I’m happy to ramble on about queer matters a ton – it was one of the fields of my doctoral exams) is that this duality does exist. And being able to embrace both ideas at once and realizing (again, as Jay and Miles talk about in this ep) that we need both to go forward.

        • Devin says:

          As for things getting better, it’s super tough. Because yes, there’ve been some great improvements. But there are also still a lot of big problems and also – with the current federal government – a lot of danger of losing those improvements and then some.

          Usually, in this discussion, I end up just quoting the song from Hairspray: “Come so far, got so far to go.”

  9. D says:

    Would it help offset the angry email telling you not to talk about politics if I wrote an angry (Claremontian?) email telling you to talk more about politics? ‘Cause this episode was great, I’d love to hear more.

    P.S. I realize you may not want/be able to deal with the anger and vitriol that this would cause. That’s okay, it’s still totally rad to hear about the political climate and events in which the comics were being written, as you normally do.

  10. Sherrie says:

    Your work is so important to me and so many others. Thank you.

    • Porthos Fitz Sh'iar Empress says:

      Cheers! I am glad I am not alone in thinking what is “just a comic book thing” can have such additional importance… sometimes I listen and think “I am pretty liberal but… wow, is this too far?” But then I see ( sadly often negative when it gets political) responses to this podcast and elsewhere and… I really think there is no way it could not be so serious, it makes me understand issues I would otherwise overlook or not find relevant. Yet, beyond the comics and through the comics, we find a true story, a story that forces us to cut the shit and be sympathetic, loving, understanding… and as our beloved hosts point out, is that not the very essence of the X-Men? The very thing that brings us here? This thing we all love?

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