Because of the strong “mob rule” mentality which continues to embody a great deal of online social networking practices, it is no surprise that many individuals, both high profile and low profile, suddenly become the targets of varying degrees of coordinated cyber-bullying.
While bullying has certainly always been a very crude and ugly aspect of society through the ages, incidents which would have remained confined to local and obscure parameters (like the graffitied wall of a bathroom stall) now become loudly broadcast across an international platform via Twitter, Facebook, personal blogs, etc.
In the present cyber-orientation of bullying, the unreasonable hatred becomes infectious, while the tactics become relentless.
Hurtful terms like “misogynist” become freely used and misapplied as well, in the heat of such bullying euphoria which new instantaneous communication mediums provide.
Cartoonist Dave Sim is someone who has faced his fair share of bullying in this climate.
It is unfair for anyone to call Dave Sim anything except an incredibly generous individual. He never earned the insults. Over a career which has spanned almost forty years, he has freely shared his wonderful art and wit with us, his groundbreaking passion for creator rights, and even some of his deeply personal philosophical and spiritual inquiries. His CEREBUS remains the absolute best the comic book medium can ever hope for.
His generosity should have earned him full diplomatic immunity from petty insults, let alone the bullying now channeled in his direction. “Misogynist,” by the way, is a bullying term itself, one that holds as much venom of intolerance as it purports to identify.
Is the comic book industry so ungrateful?
It reminds me of the way that Walt Disney (the man) is now often criticized with the most outrageous accusations, when all he ever did was try to bring great joy to the lives of children. Similarly, Dave Sim simply wanted a better comic book industry which respected creator rights, and he actually helped achieve this goal. Just like Walt Disney successfully improved children’s entertainment and the art form of animation.
Success can easily bring criticism, and it can easily bring bullying efforts, but a legacy will stand once earned, and Dave Sim clearly earned the legacy he created. The comic book industry will never be the same for all of his tireless work. It will forever be a better medium.
Any criticism directed against Dave Sim’s personal character can only be motivated by the same jealousy which has motivated all bullying since the beginning of time. Dave Sim continues to produce the best comic book art and literature around, in spite of being hassled (and comic book creators have been hassled the longest of anyone, even before all the online stuff, since back in the days of the Letters Page).
He certainly remains the best example to learn from, that an individual can have an independent voice and celebrate it, and joyously share their gifts with others, in spite of all the jealousy, and bullying, and misunderstanding that can ever be heaped upon the mortal heart.
Thank you, Dave Sim. For the generosity shared, and the positive impact made.
Mark my words, dear readers, it is a certainty that in the not-too-distant future Mr. Sim’s name will be mentioned in the immortal ranks of Washington Irving, Charles Dickens, and Mark Twain within the halls of prestigious academia, and will be the required reading for one and all.
Well, that’s all for now, and remember: “Freedom is Ink on the Page”
The citizens of Neptune City-Saturn Town have recently organized a peaceful protest and letter-writing campaign pleading with Nickelodeon to bring the one and only Jennette McCurdy back to TV. If you feel the same, contact Nickelodeon, Dan Schneider, or any other Hollywood big-shot that comes to mind, and tell ‘em: “I want my Jennette McCurdy!”
This art was done for the cover of the 50th Anniversary issue of Ocean County College’s “Ocean Views” alumni magazine. It is an updated version of a previous piece I had submitted to that publication, which I was requested to change (make more colorful) for use as the cover (I was told they had liked the art that much).
I didn’t hear anything after submitting, and now, with the recent release of that particular issue, I find I did not make the cover after having them get my hopes so very up.
Guess I better re-read the material on rejection.