I heard that, and I felt nothing but sadness. This little girl noticed how comics have women with their boobs hanging out or only occasionally having adventures or whatever while the guys got to be and do all the cool stuff. Only 8 years old, and she recognized the big "No girls allowed" sign on the comic book treehouse. I will return to the comic book field and its insular, borderline incestuous fandom members anon. But for now, I need to cover this.
I want to say, people want to hate.
But I don't think that's the problem.
Oh, on the surface, it is. For eons, people have tried teaching others to live in harmony and respect each other. And it never lasts. Sooner or later, the same old mentality of mankind rears its head and people start looking to hate. To fear. To dominate. To control. Jesus Christ taught that we should be good to one another, and His reward for this, as Douglas Adams points out in The Hitch-hiker's Guide To The Galaxy, was to be killed in a brutal and violent manner. My ancestral home of Poland was once known for its religious diversity, with synagogues, churches, and mosques sharing public space and people admiring it as a land where they could worship freely. Look at Poland now.
But here's the problem -- the hate only accomplishes so much. Look online, and you will find tons of video commentaries decrying modern society. Some bandy around the trendy sociological words of "privilege" and "patriarchy" and so on. And then you have others bandying around the words "political correctness" and "get a sense of humor" and other such things. And yet, despite all the language flinging back and forth, nothing is really happening one way or the other.
Let's take, for example, women's liberty. it wasn't that long ago that Emma Watson gave a speech at the UN about equality for women. Given the number of countries where women are very much treated as property, this is a very real concern. And she was initially cheered. Then, some actress, I don't remember who, said that the speech wasn't that impressive and what Watson was espousing was "First World feminism." Suddenly, being a feminist wasn't about letting women be who and what they wanted. You had to have standing in the eyes of others before you could call yourself that. It continues to this day, with the "Day Without A Woman" protest being branded by some major news organizations as "Day Without A Priviledge Woman." Women used to be grouped with the Oppressed. Now, they are subdividing, and some women don't deserve protection. During the Women's March on the White House to protest Trump, women's groups who were pro-life were denied participation because they did not have standing in the eyes of the organizers.
I want to talk about Gabrielle Reece. Reece is a former pro volleyball player, model, and fitness guru. She is married, and attributes her happy marriage to being "submissive" to her husband's will. Candace Cameron Burle also feels the same way. Now, I heard this and I said, "Well, thank God I didn't marry either of them." I want an equal, so the relationship model they propose wouldn't work for me. But it works for them, so let them do as they want, I can still do what I want, no big D. And yet, women's groups around the country said the two of them were setting back women's rights by decades. All because they were in a relationship model they didn't approve of.
The hypocrisy got even worse a couple of years ago during a home invasion in Los Angeles. A bunch of teenage thugs broke into a house and raped a woman in front of her kids. All kinds of women's groups were talking about how terrible this was and that the thugs deserved death and so on. Then they found out the woman raped was Cytheria, the so-called "squirt queen" of porn. Bottom line: when word got out she was a longtime porn star who didn't regret her career choice, all those voices of support and justice got really really quiet. There was an implicit statement that Cytheria didn't deserve sympathy or support because she made her living in a field that exploits women. Curiously, when men make porn, it's exploitive, but when women make porn, it's empowering. I have no idea what the distinction is.
I've discussed how I'm on the fence about Black Lives Matter. I agree with some of their stance, I disagree with some of them. But to counter them, people started All Lives Matter, saying everyone was important. This is a valid point, except no one does anything with it. When Trump signed the travel ban and entire planes were being sent back because the flight crew came from one of those countries, the All Lives Matter people didn't say a word. They were silent about something that, according to their hashtag, should have been a primary concern. Why?
Because All Lives Matter and other social causes are not about protest and justice and change.
They are a way to simply not care about what is going on. It excuses them from getting involved.
I used to make fun of the NIMBY's (Not In My Back Yard), dismissing them as Weekend Warrior activists. Then the Tea Partiers and the Occupy movement came along, making a lot of noise but not actually organizing effective change, just getting attention and shouting down contrarians and that was it. I keep telling people that Libertarianism is "Liberty for all," not "Liberty for me," but no one cares about anything beyond their own little bubble of existence. They make the NIMBY's look like revolutionaries. There's an online columnist that I won't mention -- I read his stuff because he covers things others don't, so it's news. But his opinions are stupid, particularly his stances on the wage gap. Despite Pew Research and other reliable sources saying the wage gap is very very real, he insists it is disproven. His evidence? The 1963 Equal Pay Act, which makes it illegal to pay people differently based on their race or gender (gee, marijuana is also illegal, and people are still doing that. It's almost like passing a law doesn't make something go away. Otherwise, WHY WOULD WE NEED LAW ENFORCEMENT?!?). Milo Yiannopolis also espoused the wage gap was a myth. Then a talk show host in Britain started hitting him with reports from Pew and other places. Milo couldn't counter them. In fact, he brushed them aside as meaningless. Both of those guys can see for themselves that what they decry as social hysteria is real, but they aren't going to look further than the facts they have. They don't want to look further, because then they would not be able to dismiss all these things out of hand. They would have to admit there are still problems that have to be addressed -- not all of them, sure, some people are exaggerating or lying. But there are other people who are not, who are being discriminated again. But sorting through them on a case by case basis takes time. It takes research. It takes actually caring about someone other than themselves.
And they don't want to do that.
To commemorate International Women's Day, Wall Street put up a statue called Fearless Girl. Just the other day, some moron got his buddies to take pictures of him...performing a simulated sex act with the girl. People are decrying this as privilege and patriarchy and rape culture. I'm a Kylie Minogue fan, and here's a little trivia for you -- she has a statue of herself at Madam Toussand's Wax Museum. And according to the staff, it is the most groped statue in the place. Is anyone protesting this asshole behavior? No. Instead, some moron did something just to get a rise out of people. Because he doesn't want to care about treating those the statue is meant to inspire with any decency. And likewise, those protesting have very narrowly defined standards about who is to be defended.
Remember the story at the beginning about the little girl who saw comics didn't want her kind? It wasn't long ago that Marvel abandoned it's plans for several comic books that tried to promote themselves as being feminist and gender inclusive and so on. And the traditional fanboys cheered the death of "political correctness" in comics. Comics are losing readers, and adolescent male power fantasies aren't selling as well as they used to. But God forbid anyone besides straight white males finds entertainment in comics. Try to imagine being a girl who sees Black Widow or Wonder Woman or Supergirl or the DC Superheroines or whatever. And you go into a comic shop. And all you can see is women with pnuematic anatomy dressed like $10,000 a night hookers who use their sexuality to empower themselves instead of their brains or their determination or whatever. Marvel's attempt to expand the demographic failed because the target female audience looked at comic book fans and said, "Why the hell would I want to hang around with those assholes?" and stayed away. Basically, guys made themselves so socially repulsive that they don't have to worry about sharing their medium of choice, even as it circles the drain. The days when you had romance comics and crime comics and westerns and war and slice of life and comedy and such? That's not what they approve of, and they are the guardians of a dying sect, each mixing their own Kool-Aid.
(Ironically, comics used to be all about addressing public politics. DC tried all kinds of goofy things to seem hip, like Brother Power The Geek -- you gotta love a comic that features missile-building hippies. Stan Lee, meanwhile, created Iron Man, with war profiteer Tony Stark, specifically to piss off the peaceniks. How soon we forget that the things we consume now were born of the very things we decry.)
People want positive change. They disagree on what that change is, but they want it. But they no longer want to make it happen. They want to exclude. They want to turn a blind eye. They want to not care about anything other than their own subjective thoughts, fantasies, and conclusions. Fairness is impossible, so why bother trying? It's like the end of Star Trek 6 -- isn't this how it's supposed to be? The battle? The war? The struggle? Isn't this what it's really about, instead of some easily destructable illusion of peace?
And it's all done at the expense of those like that 8 year old girl who sees the inequality but also sees no one wants to do anything about it.