On May 8th, editors and creators in the comics industry awoke to an announcement in The New York Times that Oni Press—publisher of Scott Pilgrim, among other beloved indie books—would be merging with Lion Forge, a publisher largely built by black creators, and its parent company Polarity.
It was the kind of business maneuvering that rarely makes headlines outside of the comics industry. But inside the industry, layoffs from the merger kicked up a stir that has yet to die down: several of those jettisoned in the merger were queer women and women of color. Among others, the casualties from Lion Forge included their editor-in-chief Andrea Colvin and associate editor (and Eisner award-winning cartoonist) Christina “Steenz” Stewart. Those laid off from Oni Press included its one black editor, Desiree Wilson, while executive editor Ari Yarwood resigned a week later.
It’s 1830. You’re a poor Irish immigrant living in New York’s infamous Five Points slums. Penniless and uneducated, you’re viewed by affluent white society as every bit as inferior as the blacks you live among in overcrowded squalor.
As best as you can tell, you’ll never gain an ounce of status or wealth unless you can win the social acceptance of the Anglo elites. How do you convince them you’re white – a racial category that was still new and, they hoped, malleable – like them?
“I don’t give a damn what Mueller didn’t find—it don’t take almost two years to figure out that Trump ain’t nothing but a crime boss.”
…among the news junkies in the federal Bureau of Prisons, Robert Mueller’s finding last month that there was no prosecutable evidence of a conspiracy between Donald Trump and those close to him and the Russians who interfered in the 2016 election landed hard. Not only did it quickly serve to reinforce the longstanding perception among prisoners—mirroring views held by some in the general public—that the game was rigged against those of lesser means, it shattered inmates’ hopes that a clownish villain who preyed on America’s fears of crime might finally get his.