I've always been an advocate of pluralism as a societal given -- and certainly have always found it more than a little weird when I find myself having to explain the concept of pluralism to a grown-up and even weirder when I see myself "drawing a blank" in doing so (most famously when visiting Jeff Smith back in '93 -- see BONE COMMENTARIES now on Patreon).
I think Jeff S. went "over the edge" throwing the "disabled card" in the discussion about Charles Krauthammer. WAY stretching a point to make "armchair" into an insult. But, then, I really dislike "identity politics" of any kind. (i.e. I pray five times a day and fast in Ramadan and read the Koran aloud on a daily basis so before you criticize me, THINK WHAT THAT MAKES YOU) (stick to answering my points and I don't care what you think of my religious observance).
I think Tim W and Damian are pretty much on the same team which I would define as COMICS JOURNAL UBER ALLES. It was as a reward for Tim -- the fact that he would create and maintain a site like this without compensation in a universally-hostile-to-Dave-Sim environment -- that I engaged with the TCJ website back in 2012. I could see that Tim had a complete blind spot about THE COMICS JOURNAL's and FANTAGRAPHICS' underlying (and so far as I can see irredeemable) nature and he really wanted ALL of the comics he loved -- including CEREBUS -- to be included in that context.
It was a major fiasco from the git-go. Which was not MY doing. I was cordial and as eloquent as I could be and the CJUA team -- here represented primarily by Damian -- has been attempting to "spin" the resulting fiasco as a win for TCJ ever since. Look how open-minded they are! Look how inclusive they are! Look how supportive of Dave Sim they are!
Which is complete b.s. I told Tim EXACTLY what would happen. I would go over there and do a thread. The thread would go ballistic and they would shut it down. Which is exactly what happened.
Because. That's. The. Kind. Of. People. They. Are. And. That's. The. Kind. Of. People. They. Attract.
To me, shutting down threads is the antithesis of pluralism. It's: as long as my team is winning, we are all engaging in free speech and good for us. As soon as my team is losing or even being made to look bad, it's time to end the discussion.
That's what the threat to shut down the comments section on Saturday looks like to me. Again, no surprise TO ME, because CJUA has that as an entrenched viewpoint and Tim W (no offence meant, Tim: just identifying what I see as the core relevant point) is a "CJUA kind of guy".
Granted: Damian "winds" Jeff up. It's also true that Jeff "winds" Damian up. Genuine pluralism is ABOUT "winding" people up. Or, more fruitfully, avoiding winding them up and just saying what you have to say FACTUALLY or AS AN OPINION.
I appreciate the fact that, TO ME, I now have a couple of defenders on this site: Sandeep and Jeff. I appreciate them defending me -- while also appreciating that they're always being careful to SPECIFY that they don't speak FOR me.
I'm hoping that Jeff will not allow the CJUA forces to "head fake" him into abandoning me when he agrees with me so that AMOC goes back to being an environment where, as is the "received wisdom" everywhere else, Dave Sim is Crazy, Period. End of discussion.
It seems to me that Damian's subtext is always "Dave Sim is Crazy" so I think it only reasonable to give space to the only two people who are willing, on an on-going basis, to assert the contrary.
I'm glad to see that cooler heads seem to have prevailed.
And, Jeff? Please keep leaving phone messages when you think someone is being critical of my opinions. I'm not sure this WORKS, but clearly just letting "Dave Sim is Crazy" stand unchallenged WASN'T working.
So, let's keep doing it this way.