DC Responds to Orson Scott Card/SUPERMAN Controversy


DC Comics has issued an official response to the ongoing controversy concerning Orson Scott Card writing a story for the digial-first Adventures of Superman anthology, to The Advocate and Fox News Radio.

"As content creators we steadfastly support freedom of expression, however the personal views of individuals associated with DC Comics are just that — personal views — and not those of the company itself," the statement reads. Newsarama reached DC for comment, and received the same statement.

Soon after Card was announced last week as one of many contributors to Adventures of Superman, many observers took issue given the Ender's Game writer's history of anti-gay rights remarks. In a 2000 interview with Salon, Card was quoted as saying, "Gay rights is a collective delusion that's being attempted. And the idea of 'gay marriage' — it's hard to find a ridiculous enough comparison." He's futher espoused these beliefs in places like a 2004 essay, where he described same-sex marriage as a "Humpty-Dumpty-ish wish." Since 2009, Card has been a board member of the National Organization for Marriage, which, according to its site, was "Founded in 2007 in response to the growing need for an organized opposition to same-sex marriage in state legislatures."

Orson Scott Card.

A petition on allout.org calling for DC to "drop Orson Scott Card now" due to his "anti-gay efforts" currently has 9,030 supporters, with a goal of 10,000. Zeus Comics, a Dallas retailer, stated on their Facebook page that they will not carry the book in print, with owner Richard Neal writing, "If you replaced the word 'homosexuals' in his essays with the words 'women' or 'jews' he would not be hired. But I'm not sure why its still okay to 'have an opinion' about gays? This is about equality."

The comic book press has also responded to the move, with CBR contributor Brett White writing that Card's beliefs "are not merely opinions. They are bigotry." White further posited that Card's viewpoints make him specifically unfit to write Superman, "who possess a single, unifying trait: an overwhelming compassion for all human beings and the desire to fight for their survival and rights." Rich Johnston of Bleeding Cool expressed misgivings with boycotts, writing, "It’s a very dangerous game, it has led in the past to witchtrials, McCarthyite or otherwise, and it’s no better than the actions of, say, One Million Moms. And next time? It could be you."

In 2008, Card responded to charges of being a homophobe, writing in Deseret News, "A term that has mental-health implications (homophobe) is now routinely applied to anyone who deviates from the politically correct line. How long before opposing gay marriage, or refusing to recognize it, gets you officially classified as 'mentally ill'?"

The print version of Adventures of Superman, out in May, is solicited to also contain a story by writer Jeff Parker and artist Chris Samnee. Card's story, co-written by frequent collaborator Aaron Johnston and illustrated by Chris Sprouse and Karl Story, is scheduled to debut online on April 29.

Card, best known for his Ender's Game series of science-fiction novels, wrote two volumes of Ultimate Iron Man for Marvel in 2005 and 2008. Marvel has also published multiple comics based on the Ender's Game series, and Card, with Johnston, co-wrote a Dragon Age miniseries for IDW in 2010.

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