Batman 44

Last month Superman: Action Comics #42 took on police brutality, which meant it wasn’t long before Batman gave it a go. DC Comics is back at the political activism again, although it appears Batman #44 is a much stronger product thanks to writers Scott Snyder and Brian Azzarello.

As I have said in the past, the fact that writers insert their personal politics into their stories doesn’t bother me — it’s that industry activism operates along a one-way street.

The latest issue of Batman alludes to the deaths of Trayvon Martin in Florida, Michael Brown in Missouri and Eric Garner in New York City, but when will DC Comics write an issue inspired by the Officer Down Memorial Page or the many cops killed in gunfire each year? Don’t hold your breath.

Here is what Bleeding Cool had to say about Batman #44:

Throughout the story’s twists and turns, and there are several, certain themes begin to emerge that prove to be compelling and thought provoking. As Batman follows his line of investigation, he begins to discover that true culpability, however far removed, may ultimately rest with none other than Bruce Wayne. It’s an interesting commentary on the notion of vigilantism in general, as the genuinely well-meaning effort to rebuild Gotham undertaken by Wayne inadvertently create issues that he must confront as Batman.

And all those years ago Bruce’s parents were responsible for their own murders, right DC Comics?

Batman 44 Penguin

Here is what Emma Houxbois of the Rainbow Hub blog told The Guardian:

“The issue is ‘unprecedented’ in how the authors ‘make race, and the impact on black children in specific, central’ to Snyder’s four-year reimagining of Gotham as “a place that reflects all of the most urgent issues facing contemporary urban populations, like the destruction of public services, using prisons to house the mentally ill, militarization of police forces, and large scale gentrification in the wake of natural disasters.’ The story holds not just Batman but the book’s ‘white readers accountable for their complicity in the real-world situations that the comic analogizes”.

There we go. The truth finally comes out. Again. White readers must be repeatedly flogged for “complicity” in … out of wedlock births and black-on-black crime in places like Chicago and Detroit.

Somehow, someway, when I enlisted in the military years ago and was on a field training exercise in Germany I managed to create the “real world situations” now tearing Chicago apart. Weird.

Somehow, someway, when I was working the overnight shift at Target stocking shelves while putting myself through college I was sowing the seeds for violence on the streets of Brooklyn. Odd.

But how does Snyder feel? He tells The Guardian of officer Ned Howler’s decision to shoot teenager Peter Duggio:

“Of course you want Batman to beat this officer up, and be like, ‘How could you?’ But the point of the issue is that wouldn’t solve the problem. Batman throwing the officer off a roof, or throwing the officer in jail, it wouldn’t get to the heart of the matter at all. And that’s the thing I think is ultimately infuriating.”

And let us not forget the issue begins with a young black child, shot in the stomach and dying in the street, rendered food “for the crows.”

Batman 44DC

On one level I respect DC Comics for putting sharp writers on a book as important as Batman, but at the same time I resent the industry’s relentless attempts to shove activist propaganda down its readers’ throats. I refuse to buy a product that is specifically designed to flog me over the head with a racial guilt baton.

Are there bad cops out there? Sure. But most of them are good people. It is highly ironic that the same people who are complaining of being negatively painted with broad brushstrokes in the media do the same thing to law enforcement personnel, but I digress.

The next time you read a story about police brutality in a Marvel or DC Comics product, be sure to ask yourself if the writers and editors have deputized themselves society’s Thought Police. When you do, you will better parry and counter their ideological beatings.

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About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

20 comments

  1. Yeesh. Here we go again. They’re really going out of their way to sugarcoat the thugs of the BLM Movement the same way they sugarcoated the Occupy Wall Street thugs four years ago. Once again, crap like this is why I don’t buy contemporary comics and stick to back issues, reprinted in old trade paperbacks.

    I love that idiotic quote that somehow “white readers are responsible for” everything from out-of-wedlock births to black on black crime. Newsflash: I have nothing to do with it, Emma. I am not Satan incarnate because I’m a straight white male. The fact that I exist does not mean black people are being denied opportunities. Honestly, I’m sick of this crap. We should’ve gotten over this race stuff back in the 1960s, and yet these hustlers keep bringing it up, because they need to justify their existence, after all. No one alive today (unless they have a Lazarus Pit at their disposal, which I doubt) has anything to do with slavery or Jim Crow. It’s time to get over it.

    Plus, I suppose Snyder needed to earn his PC street cred. But the idiocy of this issue makes me wonder: is Scott Snyder a pseudonym for Noam Chomsky?

    1. It’s all your fault, Carl. And the fact that you don’t think it’s all your fault is further proof that it is…your fault! 🙂

      In all seriousness though, I’m not sure why DC Comics thinks I’m going to pay them to tell me that I’m somehow responsible for high unemployment and high crime within cities across the U.S. As I’ve said before, Marvel and DC have an incredibly strange business model.

    2. Haha. These kinds of politically correct stunts are a big reason why I don’t purchase contemporary comics. I want to read stories where heroes beat villains; I do not want to be told that I’m somehow responsible for high unemployment, high crime and that I’m “subconsciously racist and privileged.” That stuff doesn’t fly with me.

      And I did some research on this Emma Houxbois. Turns out she’s some online SJW activist from Canada who’s been cited as an “expert” on comics by liberal outfits like the Guardian and the AV Club. She’s one of those diversity-obsessed types who’s apparently trying to get a conservative writer named Nathan Edmondson removed from a Marvel book called “Red Wolf,” because (GASP!) he’s a conservative white guy writing a book about a Native American superhero.

  2. This same kind of thing is happening in my classes (I remember you told me to keep you updated a while back). A couple of my readings are on privilege, and they’re what you expect. Apparently, as a white Christian male, I am oppressing minorities both consciously and unconsciously with my racism, sexism, and heterosexism. White waiters will serve me first at a restaurant, even if I was there last (what?). I guess I’ve been a privileged oppressor my entire life and didn’t realize it! Ugh.

    Simply put, if someone wants to give me preferential treatment based on my skin color or religion, that’s not my fault. It’s on that person. Painting me and other people with the same broad, judgmental brush is a surefire way to drive more of a wedge between others instead of creating unity.

    1. Ah yes, the old “white guy is subconsciously racist” routine. I remember that one well from my days at USC. It was always laughable, although I guess one way to check is through lucid dreaming. I know through lucid dreaming that I have plenty of shortcomings that I need to work on, but being “subconsciously racist” is not one of them.

      As you mention, constantly trying to racially brow-beat guys like us into submission does not work.

      I have worked since I’ve been a teenager. I treat people with dignity and respect. I try to be a good person. I try to be charitable. So no, I will not grovel at the feet of college professors or comic book writers who blame me for the moral failings of people I have never met.

      Anyway, thanks for the update! I’m always happy to hear how it’s going.

  3. What the hell–I thought Gordon was Batman currently. Is this supposed to take place in the current Snyder / Capullo run (which has been fantastic so far–can’t wait to get my copy of the ‘Endgame’ hardcover next week)?

  4. What’s also distasteful is how absolutely hypocritical the two companies are. They pose as social justice warriors, and write these finger-pointing diatribes, while at the same time load up the magazines with pornographic images and female-character behavior (Starfire appears out of the sky and asks some teen dope, “Would you like to have sex with me?”; Batman and Catwoman shown doing it on a roof-top; Black Cat perched in a twerking position; Spider-Woman and her body-painted self painted by a well-known European erotic artist; and on and on and on). Sharp accusations have been made against some guy named Berganza, who’s with the Superman line, of sexual harassment. We have a rabble of white male sex addicts, all lecturing the rest of us on white privilege and race relations.

    1. I do find it quite humorous (and yet also very sad) when certain men in the industry act as if they’re champions of all things “woman” — and then churn out products that often objectify women.

  5. What I always find amazing is that the same people who can so completely empathize with someone who is responsible for his own death due to his violent actions (Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown) can simultaneously not seem to put themselves in the shoes of the other people in those confrontations.

    Can they really not imagine being a guy whose neighborhood has seen repeated break-ins by people who looked just like Trayvon Martin and who wants to protect his home, neighborhood and neighbors from further crime? Can they not imagine being a cop who tells a guy to please get out of the street and is then violently assaulted and had to defend himself? Can they not imagine being a small immigrant store owner just trying to pay his bills who’s roughed up and stolen from by a huge thug, just because he isn’t black?

    People used to mock them, calling them bleeding hearts — but I don’t think that’s true. Their hearts don’t seem to bleed unless they choose for them to. They’re far more able to close them to certain people (especially the innocent) than I am.

    How do the rich and powerful stop poor people from succeeding anyway? My opinion is that racial discrimination is either an effect of the behavior of a group of people, or unrelated to whether they succeed — it never determines whether they succeed or fail (except for ethnic cleansing, of course). If you actually look into it, and look at the history of the Jews and the Chinese as immigrants, you’ll see that discrimination against them was unrelated to their unbroken track record of success in every society they’ve been found in. Thomas Sowell’s book about race is a great resource on this topic.

    1. How do the rich and powerful stop poor people from succeeding anyway?

      You’re right: they don’t. It might feel good to some people to say, “Yeah! Raise that rich guy’s taxes!” but Mitt Romney’s bank account has nothing to do with the life I’ve made for myself. It really doesn’t.

      The history of the Jews and the Chinese as immigrants, you’ll see that discrimination against them was unrelated to their unbroken track record of success in every society they’ve been found in. Thomas Sowell’s book about race is a great resource on this topic.

      1. Cool points for mentioning Thomas Sowell. 2. Don’t get me started on this issue or you’ll force me to talk at length about my wife, who is a first-generation immigrant.

      America is supposedly a “racist” country, and yet my wife can move here — with no money or knowledge of the English language — and then become a doctor in just over two decades. Ummm, okay. Sure. Whatever you say, race-baiters. Good luck with that.

      Culture matters. Family matters. Cultures that do not value the family unit or see work as a virtue produce failure. It’s pretty simple.

  6. It’s a sign of the times that saying “Black Lives Matter” is politically correct, but saying “All Lives Matter” is considered racist and insensitive.

    OK, I know that some liberals will claim that the “BLM” meme means “black lives matter, too.” If you get all your news from PCNN and MSDNC, you get the impression that (1) there is an epidemic of white people (mostly cops, but also some vigilantes) murdering black kids and (2) that the killers get away with it because the legal system discriminates against blacks and in favor of whites (and because Stand Your Ground laws are a hunting license for trigger-happy racists).

    The MSM report that a white cop shot a black motorist after the cop stopped the driver for a minor traffic violation. Then they report that a grand jury failed to indict the cop. End of story.

    The only people who get all the facts are gun freaks. Because, a year later, they read Massad Ayoob’s column in The American Handgunner or Combat Handguns. The cop stopped the guy for speeding, the driver pointed a shotgun at him, and the cop shot him in self-defense. None of which gets reported on CNN.

    It turned out that the “unarmed bridegroom” in New York was trying to run over cops with his SUV when they shot him. The “black motorcyclist” in Miami was trying to run over a cop, who shot him in self-defense. Michael Brown, the “gentle giant,” robbed a store, choked a clerk, and attacked a cop, forcing the cop to shoot him. Trayvon Martin attacked Zimmerman. Eric Garner was not choked; he died of pronation, which was a problem only because of his own obesity. Given the MSM’s track record, I always wait until I have information from other sources before forming an opinion about anything.

    And the hoodrats drop out of school, do drugs, and refuse to work, but somehow their poverty is the result of people in Kansas (who work 60-70 hours a week and pay 35% income tax) not “giving back” enough.

    I highly recommend Peggy Hubbard’s Youtube video.

  7. “It’s an interesting commentary on the notion of vigilantism in general, as the genuinely well-meaning effort to rebuild Gotham undertaken by Wayne inadvertently create issues that he must confront as Batman.”

    I can get that from “The Dark Knight” without a whole lot of mindless, biased twaddle geared solely towards earning thumbs up from the SJWs.

    “militarization of police forces”

    Evidently, Houxbois has never even looked at a Batman story before. If she did, she might be aware that Gotham is the most crime-ridden city in the multiverse. That’s why they need a guy who dresses up in a bat costume and prowls the streets; it’s that messed up. Comic writers and their cheerleaders always talk about injecting realism into comics. That’s why they champion stories like this. And yet, if the real-world had to deal with the kind of stuff we read about in Gotham, well, somehow I doubt you’d see many “stop militarizing the police” protests.

    “The story holds not just Batman but the book’s ‘white readers accountable for their complicity in the real-world situations that the comic analogizes”

    Gosh, who knew all those times I bought comic books, I was causing black-on-black crime in cities many miles from my suburban home? Well, at least I did my part to end those real-world situations Emma yammers on about by not spending any money on today’s comics. Better not spend any money on DC’s upcoming movies, either–y’know, just to be safe. 😉

  8. Gotham must be run by enlightened liberals, because it appears to be the most corrupt, crime-infested big city in the DC universe. It sure isn’t set in Texas. If it was in Texas, most of Batman’s villain gallery would be dead, shot full of holes by the patriotic locals. Then the ones who escaped the neighbors would be promptly executed by Texas. The Joker might last two weeks, tops. More seriously, one of the chief marks of liberal thinking is that there’s always a victim group that is never responsible for anything they do. I’ve rarely read or heard liberal media where they say that a certain bad scenario was EVERYBODY’s fault.

  9. In case anyone doubted that Marvel has just decided to go all-in on SJW-ism:

    http://www.breitbart.com/big-hollywood/2015/09/23/ta-nehisi-coates-write-black-panther-comic-marvel/

    These people are beyond parody; it’s the kind of thing you’d make up if you were trying to make a joke about how they’re obsessed with race.

    I love a lot of their characters, but I think I’m done with them. I’m now questioning if I even want them to get my money for their movies.

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