Monday News: Biracial Spider-Man, Germany limits erotic ebook sales, teacher resigns over King & King, and Ta-Nehisi Coates on the Confederate flag
EXCLUSIVE: Spider-Man Miles Morales — popular biracial version of the hero — joins main Marvel comics universe this fall -Let’s start with the good news today. Marvel continues to try to diversify their heroic universe, this time with biracial Miles Morales, who will make his debut as the new Spider-Man this fall. Although Morales’s character was first introduced in 2011, he was not written as the “real” Spider-Man. Of African American and Puerto Rican heritage, Morales is written by Brian Bendis, who believes that this character sends a positive message to young comic readers of color:
“Our message has to be it’s not Spider-Man with an asterisk, it’s the real Spider-Man for kids of color, for adults of color and everybody else,” says Bendis of the series which is drawn by artist Sarah Pichelli. . . .
The enormity of Miles Morales’ place in comic book history didn’t really hit Bendis, a father who has two kids of color among his four children, until recently. His 4-year-old adopted African-American daughter found a Miles Morales Spidey mask in the toy aisle of a department store, put it on and said, “Look daddy, I’m Spider-Man!” he recalls.
“I started crying in the middle of the aisle,” says Bendis. “I realized my kids are going to grow up in a world that has a multi-racial Spider-Man, and an African American Captain America and a female Thor.”–New York Daily News
It’s Now Illegal to Sell Adult eBooks Before 10 PM in Germany – I know that Germany is a growing market when it comes to Romance, but when it comes to “adult ebooks,” a new legal ruling requires that they only be sold during the late night hours. Does this only cover erotica? I’m not sure. Nate Hoffelder is contacting Kobo and Amazon to find out how ebook retailers will be responding to this new regulation, which has been imposed by the Youth Protection Authority, as a new application of the existing Germany’s Youth Media Protection Law.
Boersenblatt says that the 10 pm to 6 am window originally came from restrictions on adult cinema (where it made sense), but I still don’t understand what the regulators were thinking in applying that rule to the internet. Do they really believe that the adult internet, including porn sites, pirate sites, video sites, etc, is going to be turned off for 16 hours a day? . . .
And apparently that is how they want the ebook retailers to operate. According to my sources, the retailers are going to have to start tracking which titles count as “youth-endangering” under German law. Those ebooks will have to be isolated in a specific section of each ebookstore, which (theoretically) can then be made invisible using filtering software. –Ink, Bits & Pixels (aka The Digital Reader)
Teacher resigns after reading students book about gay couple -In response to a third grader being called “gay” during gym class, a North Carolina teacher decided to read the book, King and King to his class, a decision that quickly resulted in a meeting with the principal and numerous complaints from parents. Omar Currie also received ugly threats and insults from parents, constitutive of the usual, but still disgusting and ignorant, anti-gay slurs. I wonder if the book will be subject to more litigation:
King & King has been a subject of controversy before. In 2006, the parents of a Massachusetts second-grader sued after the book was read in their child’s class. A federal judge later ruled against them, saying the rights of parents to exercise their religious and moral beliefs are not violated when children are exposed to differing ideas in public school. –Washington Post
Take Down the Confederate Flag—Now – As readers, we understand the importance of symbols and symbolic language. This piece by Ta-Nehisi Coates on the history of the Confederate flag and its dangerous, destructive symbolism, is both beautifully written and powerfully argued.
Moral cowardice requires choice and action. It demands that its adherents repeatedly look away, that they favor the fanciful over the plain, myth over history, the dream over the real. Here is another choice.
Take down the flag. Take it down now.
Put it in a museum. Inscribe beneath it the years 1861-2015. Move forward. Abandon this charlatanism. Drive out this cult of death and chains. Save your lovely souls. Move forward. Do it now. –The Atlantic