I feel like I should say something about last week’s terrorist attacks on Charlie Hebdo. While not a “comic book,” Charlie Hebdo deals out satire in cartoons and other forms.
I can’t think of anything to say, really, but others have said great things.
My friend, Kirsten, posted to Facebook just hours after the attack, “Being humorless is deadly. Fuck the world where this makes any sense.”
On The Daily Show the night of the attack, Jon Stewart naturally summed things up by saying, “I know very few people go into comedy, you know, as an act of courage, mainly because it shouldn’t have to be that. It shouldn’t be an act of courage. It should be taken as established law.” He went on to say, “Our goal tonight is not to make sense of this because there is no sense to be made of this.”
Then, in response to the killing of Ahmed Merabet – a police officer who responded to the attack and was Muslim – people have been quoting Voltaire: “I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.”
Then there are the responses by fellow cartoonist and artists.
Ana Juan’s The New Yorker cover:
Then there is Charlie Hebdo’s response with their next cover (by artist Renald Luzier), depicting Mohammad crying, holding a sign that says, “I am Charlie,” with “All is forgiven” written above him:
Even The Simpsons paid their respects:
Bringing it back to comics, in the current comic book industry, where creators are pushing the boundaries in creator-owned titles, I fear this could happen here. Outside of the men-in-tights world, creator-owned titles have been testing new areas, like sexuality and ultra-violence. All it takes is an extremist to take offence.
Of course, Voltaire nailed it. We may not like everything going on around us, but we have to respect people’s rights, especially creatively.
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