I try to use the blog section to keep things light around here (no pun intended). 2016 was an especially ugly, rotten, nasty, and terrible election year for us here in the U.S. and the constant news stream of politics made me numb. My social media feeds were crammed with political “news,” think-pieces, rants, and outrage. While 2016 was a relatively good year for me personally, and for STAR POWER, it’s been a perpetual flood of bad news and ugly, immature politics. I didn’t want to add to it, so I kept politics and the news mostly out of the blog section. You folks come here for a sci-fi superhero space adventure, not the political rants of its creators.
But dammit, as the year comes to a close I find it increasingly difficult to keep my mouth shut about the state of the world.
Which brings me to several important questions I have to answer. Where do I make my statements? Where will they have an impact, if any? Do I want to draw a line in the sand and declare I stand on one side of the political spectrum and run the risk of alienating or upsetting those readers on the opposite end of that spectrum? I think I have some answers.
Where do I make my statements? Here. Not necessarily here in the blog section where I pronounce my political leanings and hope rant goes viral. STAR POWER is my statement. The Millennium Federation has been a statement about my hopes for humanity since the day this comic launched. The relationships between the characters, from various backgrounds and cultures, is my statement. Portraying what I believe is bad behavior (selfishness, greed, betrayal, deceit, dishonesty, hatred) and what I believe are lofty ideals to strive for (love and compassion) are my statements. Will they have an impact, if any? I can only do the work and hope the message comes across.
Do I want to draw a line in the sand and declare I stand on one side of the political spectrum and risk… okay, this perception of politics is a problem. Being on opposite sides of something does not equal being enemies. Night and day are not at war with one another. Conversations can be had and compromises can be reached with people who share different beliefs. That you are for one thing and against another being a pure, black-and-white statement about who you are as a person is poisonous. It’s no secret that Garth and I have differing political views. In the black-and-white “us vs. them” portrayal by the mainstream news, Garth and I should hate each other. But we don’t. We are very good friends who have the ability to hold discussions about things we disagree and come to an understanding of the other side’s views. If everyone would stop drawing their lines in the sand, and if everyone else would stop being so eager to be offended by the other side, maybe we could get make some progress and move forward. Maybe we could all be friends for once.
Politics are messy. Making statements is risky. Sometimes you have to do have to choose if you want to ignore the mess and wait for someone else to clean it up. Sometimes you have to take risks.