Seduction Of The Not So Innocent, Redux – Michael Davis: From The Edge

bcdeadtimeMichael Davis writes,

This is a much-expanded version of Seduction of the not so innocent that ran in Comicmix.

In 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision in Brown v. Board of Education, which overturned Jim Crow racial segregation in the public schools. That mattered little in most of the country white privilege was normalized, and white supremacy went unchallenged.

Black people had no real say in much. Whites controlled, as they still do to a large degree, most everything.

Since the 1950's Black and Brown people have been demanding their rights and as expected in a nation of so many different viewpoints there has been push back.

This time a distinction between the past is evident. It appears the soon to be the leader of the free world Donald Trump is now leading any pushback on racial resolutions. His actions over time and the last few years support this.

Some of the Trump Race Record include:

Attacking Muslim Gold Star parents

Claimed a judge was biased because "he's a Mexican."

The Justice Department sued his company ― twice ― for not renting to black people

Refused to condemn the white supremacists who were campaigning for him

Never apologized to President Obama for saying he was not born in the United States

He encouraged the mob justice that resulted in the wrongful imprisonment of the Central Park Five.

From the Huffington Post

In 1989, Trump took out full-page ads in four New York City-area newspapers calling for the return of the death penalty in New York and the expansion of police authority in response to the infamous case of a woman who was beaten and raped while jogging in Manhattan's Central Park.

"They should be forced to suffer and, when they kill, they should be executed for their crimes," Trump wrote, referring to the Central Park attackers and other violent criminals. "I want to hate these murderers and I always will." The public outrage over the Central Park jogger rape, at a time when the city was struggling with high crime, led to the wrongful conviction of five teenagers of color known as the Central Park Five. The men's convictions were overturned in 2002 after they'd already spent years in prison when DNA evidence showed they did not commit the crime. Today, their case is considered a cautionary tale about a politicized criminal justice process.

Trump, however, still thinks the men are guilty.

The Voting Rights Act, signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson (1908-73) on August 6, 1965, aimed to overcome legal barriers at the state and local levels that prevented African Americans from exercising their right to vote under the 15th Amendment (1870) to the Constitution of the United States. The act significantly widened the franchise and is considered among the most far-reaching pieces of civil rights legislation in U.S. history.

That was then.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013, the Supreme Court effectively struck down the heart of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 by a 5-to-4 vote, freeing nine states, mostly in the South, to change their election laws without advance federal approval.

That's happening, in fact, it already happened.

It's becoming harder MUCH harder for poor people and people of color to vote. Voter suppression isn't new it's been undertaken since Black people have voted but this time every branch of government is under one party.

One party under the control of a man who lies without the slightest remorse. Don't take my word for it:

His record clearly shows he has no "great relationship with the Blacks."

Is it possible Trump has the kind of respect he says he does for Black people? Sure, it's possible, still, as a Black man, I've too much to lose to pretend what he says and does isn't what he said and did.

Feel free to disagree but do so with facts. Opinion is not fact what I've attributed to Trump isn't opinion. Trump has made ignoring truth a recreational game as have some at Bleeding Cool.

To those who ignore proof for belief, I say, it's your life play it as you will. Good luck with getting a home loan with an opinion banks usually prefer facts on credit reports

I'd like my president to make decisions based on factually credible intel.

Trump not only ignores the findings of the greatest intelligence community in the world he mocks the very people who will soon call him Commander and Chief.

Who taunts people they must depend on? This isn't someone fighting with a neighbor over dog sh-t on his lawn these are the folk in charge of protecting our nation. Wouldn't you like them focused on that and not pissed at their boss? It only takes one person to screw up a report on purpose…wait a second Trump doesn't read reports.

Never mind.

My opinion of Trump has been forged by facts. I believe he is a liar and perhaps a racist the facts clearly show he has acted as both on many occasions.

With notable exceptions, the comic book industry, after trouncing Thump when thought he couldn't win, has been silent after his did. For comics, silence isn't golden, and history shows that.

1954, psychiatrist Fredric Wertham, cautioned the world comic books were damaging to young minds and a serious cause of juvenile delinquency.

He did so in his book Seduction of the Innocent.

To say the book was influential would be an understatement. It was taken so seriously parents and teachers vowed to combat this attack on the youth of America. Fueled by the televised lynching of American freedoms brought on by McCarthyism attacking comic books was a no-brainer.

Comics took aim at Trump to continue doing so would surely catch his eye. As he did with Meryl Streep, after she called him out of his alleged treatment of a reporter, he would come after us.

Ms. Streep may have been wrong believe it or not.

I believe I'm a reasonable person as such I've got to give Trump the benefit of the doubt on this one. I do that with EVERYONE when shown convincing factual evidence, not bullsh-t submitted during a heated opinion.

There are filmed examples of Trump gesturing wildly when mocking someone. I hesitated to believe such but saw with my own eyes quite a few instances. The video clips show similar behavior when caricaturing a person. It's entirely possible Trump did not mean to make light of the disabled reporter.

Nevertheless, there is still a lot of insensitivity towards the reporter. Making three blind mice references while mocking Stevie Wonder's is still in remarkable bad taste even if you use the same example with others often.

Making fun of the reporter's disability may not have been Trump's intention but calling women fat cows and assorted other names it's easy to assume he was making fun of the reporter. He says he would never do that.

He also says he's not racist if so why does he never explain his hate speech and downright lies?

I get he's passionate, and I also pop sh-t in a heated dialogue but AFTER I'm proven WRONG I admit such Trump sticks to the lie. Case in point, the Central Park Five were kids unjustly accused and wrongly convicted. Trump helped railroad those boys and worse once it was proven beyond a shadow of a doubt they were innocent he STILL says they were guilty.

What does that say to the fringe groups of bigoted people who take the words of our next President as gospel?

It says it's OK to say 'nigger' out loud again.

What he did to the first Black President was straight out of a racist playbook. It went further than the voting booth it went to the heart and future of Black America. Black children now had a President as the ultimate role model. When told, they could be anything they wanted to be he became the greatest example it was possible.

Looking up to Obama was a safe bet if ever there was one, right?


Black children saw the most powerful man on earth regularly accused of being unintelligent (show your transcripts) a threat (he founded Isis wants to kill grandma) inhuman (show your birth certificate) because he was Black.

On top of all that, they see the white man who championed these things awarded for doing so.

Trump poisoned the waters around Obama as a role model so completely in a very real way the Central Park Five became millions.

The KKK got a pass until Trump had no choice but to disavow them but when Obama 'showed his papers' did Trump apologize like he said he would?

Did he show his taxes?

Is he draining the swamp?

Is Mexico paying for the wall?


For any man going back on his word with no concern whatsoever, exposes a terrible moral failure however for a President?

It exposes the country to many risks which Trump and his never wrong never apologizes strut seems to care little about if he cares at all.

Yeah, it's safe to say, Trump will come after comics if we make a big enough stink if we do Gerald Jones has given Trump and his followers an ideal way to begin.

Gerard Jones, a comics writer whose career includes writing Green Lantern and The Trouble with Girls, co-creating Prime for Malibu, has been arrested on suspicions of putting child pornography on YouTube.

Full disclosure, I know Gerald and was shocked by these charges. I am not here to defend nor am I here to condemn him. He's accused of a horrible crime, but I'll wait until he has his day in court to pass judgment.

I will say this; it never fails to amaze me how those who swear by the 'law of the land' always seem to ignore any presumption of innocence.

I have no sympathy for those who prey on Children for that there is no excuse, none. There is also no reason for damning a person before all the facts are known. If found guilty he should get and deserves jail. I'm not afraid to say that nor am I afraid to say I find the charges hard to believe. I pray he's innocent but allow for the fact he may not be.

The facts will be revealed in court, not on Twitter Facebook or Bleeding Cool.

There's a real threat to comics no matter what the outcome of a trial.

Every branch of government is poised to follow the lead of the next President of The United States.

It will only take one inquiry into this case to give rise to a new comic book investigation. Kids, sex, and comics? That's a dream come true for an extreme Right Winger with a hankering to clean up the depravity in Hollywood.

The turning back of the clock has already begun on Black America. Can what we watch read or write be far behind?

In 1954 much of what Wertham told the public was bullsh-t and lies.

From Wikipedia:

Wertham "manipulated, overstated, compromised, and fabricated evidence" in support of the contentions expressed in Seduction of the Innocent. He intentionally mis-projected both the sample size and substance of his research, making it out to be more objective and less anecdotal than it truly was. He did not adhere to standards worthy of scientific research, instead of using questionable evidence as rhetorical ammunition for his argument that comics were a cultural failure.

That sound familiar?

Congress convened hearings on the comic book industry and the industry folded like a bitch and as such the Comics Code was born.

Perhaps folding like a bitch was harsh. It was a different time and America was in a different place.

But It appears it's a place our next president wants to return us to. If they come for us, will we go? As I said earlier, for comics, silence isn't golden, so I for one will continue to call Mr. Trump on his sh-t.

I hope if attacked the industry won't just let Trump piss all over us. Silence isn't golden, and neither are my showers.

About Rich Johnston

Head writer and founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world. Living in London, father of two. Political cartoonist.

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