If you thought that proposed boycott of McDonalds' “violent” FANTASTIC FOUR-themed Happy Meals was asinine, prepare for an even more tactless campaign against comics. Maryland democrat Nancy King is running for the Senate and her platform's against education cutbacks. And that's all well and good. The slogan is “Imagine if they had to lay off teachers…”
You could complete that sentence in any number of ways and convey the threat of a scaled-back teaching body with any number of images. Perhaps scenes of over-crowded classrooms? Or a line chart showing steadily-diminishing test scores? Nah... those aren't visceral enough. Hey, how about a picture of kids reading comics? That’s right, King’s campaign has utilized the word/picture juxtaposition typical to comics to identity comics readership as a harmful consequence of a hindered education system.
‘Cause comics will rot kids' brains, right? == TEASER ==
I don’t really want to get into an arguing with this kind of outdated sentiment. It should be obvious to any reasonable person. Reading with Pictures is a great advocacy group for using comics as part of education. G-Man used to keep comics in his classroom back when he was teaching math - - he even decorated the walls with pages. And, as I’ve mentioned, comics got me out of a 2nd Grade remedial reading class a lot more effectively than the Ritalin my teacher was pushing for.
King’s done a great job of alienating some potential supporters by playing on old stereotypes and whipping an old scapegoat. Bleeding Cool brought this to everybody’s attention and I hope it’s going to spread, as these viral memes are wont to do. I hope it gets the attention of Marvel and DC’s big powerful parent companies, Disney and Warner Bros. I hope they slap her campaign with a nice, tidy cease-and-desist order for using their trademarked products, in clear view, without permission.