Jeff Lemire On Comicsgate: 'The Time Is Now to Speak Up'

jeff lemire

Writer/artist Jeff Lemire has elaborated on his stance against Comicsgate, a movement whose members generally oppose what they view as the "forced diversification" of mainstream comic books. Their crusade has frequently resulted in the online targeting of female, LGBT and ethnic-minority creators, and those dubbed "social justice warriors," under the guise of criticism.

Known for a body of work that ranges from Essex County and Sweet Tooth to Old Man Logan and Descender, Lemire joined acclaimed artist Bill Sienkiewicz and others last week in pushing back against Comicsgate following the online harassment of Marsha Cooke, wife of the late cartoonist Darwyn Cooke. "Comicsgate is based on fear, intolerance, bigotry and anger," Lemire tweeted on Aug. 22. "The comics creators emerging today are too talented, too smart and too loud to be beaten by these weak people. It’s time we all started standing up for one another."

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The Eisner Award winner elaborated Friday in a blog post, in which he urged other comics creators to take a public stand against the targeted harassment campaign.

"I had hoped more creators who, like me, have had the privilege to create comics free of this sort of abuse and scrutiny, because we are white, and we are men, would have joined me in denouncing Comicsgate," he wrote, in part. "I know many of you feel the way I do. I noticed that many popular and significant creators 'liked' my tweet. And that’s great, but it’s not enough. If we can’t use our voices to stand up for the next generation of comics creators, editors and the next wave of voices that will keep our medium alive and vital, then what’s the point of having them?

"The time is now to stand up for female comic book creators," Lemire continued. "The time is now to stand up for transsexual comic book creators. The time is now to stand up for creators of color and of all sexual orientations, races and religions. If we don’t do that, we don’t deserve to keep making comics ourselves."

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