ON CENSORSHIP (AND TANGENTIALLY, BATMANOLOGY)

batstatue

If you want to ensure that there will never be peace in the valley and that life will be absolutely unbearable, then I invite you to tell me to shut up. Go ahead. I dare you.

I can’t stand censorship. I really can’t. It’s beyond intolerable to me. It’s my Big Red Button.  If I can’t express myself and my ideas and the music in my soul, then why should anyone ever have anything that isn’t on fire? I don’t mean scrawling blasphemous cartoons of major religious figures, although if that’s the goddamn song that my soul feels like singing, loudly and in the middle of the public square, all the while mixing my metaphors, as is my wont, then YES, CERTAIN ITEMS (BY WHICH I MEAN LITERALLY EVERYTHING THE EYE CAN SEE) shall be set alight. You have my personal guarantee on that.

The Charlie Hebdo attack was disgusting to me. People were murdered for drawing pictures. I still can’t even process it in my head. This is Aurora Colorado all over again.

A bunch of people once went out to see a movie about Batman. They never came home. That has nothing to do with censorship. No one was censoring Batman. But that was the moment I decided that I`d never be quiet ever again.

People should be allowed to go out and see a movie about Batman. People should be allowed to draw cartoons about whatever they want. Without having to worry about being killed.

You`ll notice I haven`t used any profanity. And I quite like profanity. (Hell, I LOVE it.) But I`ve refrained from using profanity, specifically the better to make my case. Yelling and swearing isn`t going to help things. Neither will lighting things on fire (as satisfying as that may be). There`s a time and a place for yelling and screaming and lighting things on fire. As a Batmanologist, one knows what time that is. One can tell. Extensive training.

I know it`s a big joke – I call myself a Batmanologist, with a straight face, as if it`s a thing that exists but to me, it is. It is a very real thing, very raw, very visceral and palpable and invisible and indispensable. Laugh if you like, I don`t care. It`s not a joke to me.

You don`t get to tell me what to think or what to read or what to see or what to draw or what to sing. Or what to say.

I`ll sing whatever I goddamn well please. And when I split an infinitive, it goddamn well stays split.

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