So it took a while to comb through the myriad of answers we got and to come to some con conclusions, but here is what we learned from this cap-stone of modern cultural events that is Comicon.
So we went in with a two goals. The first was to ask about what seemed to be the major cross section of Comic-fandom and politics at the time, namely:
- The fact that Captain America is apparently now a Nazi and has always been a Nazi.
- How people felt about Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, as there seems to be some blowup among the anti-Israel (read: Anti-Semites) crowd about here having been a member of IDF.
And we also wanted to test out a theory about how there might be any political division between DC vs Marvel fans, and Star Wars vs. Star Trek fans.
What we quickly discovered is answer we probably should have expected, but for some reason, even in this world where Bernie stood a chance and Trump is the nominee, we thought that people would have some intelligence about them.
What did we discover?
That these is no rhyme or reason for why people hold beliefs. And this became blindly obvious with one of our first interviews, when we had someone give an impassioned, reasoned, detailed, and arguably well researched argument about Hydra-Cap is terrible. Their answer was based on ideals of patriotism, individuality, the Jewish heritage of the original authors, personal choice. All things you would have said about Cap before this latest turn. And then because we had taken up so much time we skipped to the political question and we heard: “Go Bernie!” (We’re not including this in the video below because I don’t think described the question as being much more friendly than my above assessment, and I don’t think it would be fair to put them up as example of everything that is wrong with politics when they thought they were just getting into a friendly discussion…but it was there even if it’s not in the video). That’s right “Go Bernie!” A racist, nationalist, socialist who shares more in common with Trump and Hydra-Cap than any previous vision of Captain America or any of the ideal they made an argument of why Hydra-Cap was terrible.
And it just spun out from there.
No one seemed to like the idea of Hydra-Cap, but the over and over again we heard argument that didn’t match what they supported for politics. We heard answers that were self-contradictory. It was a dim couple of days for bringing up my opinion of humanity.
And don’t even get me started on the DC/Marvel Star Wars/Star Trek thing. There are significant deep difference in philosophy between these respected franchises. No one seems to understand this. Andrew Breitbart said that “politics is downstream from culture” and unlike the people at brietbart.com we here at Elementary Politics actually care about what Andrew said, but I have to say from the limited sample we saw at Comicon I have doubts about how much culture is affecting people’s politics as there does not seem to be any reflection or influence going on at all (I know that I shouldn’t be shocked that people aren’t consistent, but I still thought there would be signs of some undercurrent of subconscious effects).
Now, certainly, it could just be a sample size issue, or despite the fact that Comicon is now REALLY mainstream, we were getting a very biased sample…but given that we’re seeing a Republican party backing a big government liberal who has no respect for the Constitution, I suspect the lack of consistency of principle isn’t really a Comicon only problem.
I had just really hope the intellectual nature of being a nerd to have transferred into a little more depth of thought.
The one bright spot is that from what we could tell, no one at Comicon had a problem with Gal Gadot, her support of Israel, or her being Jewish. So we have established that between the fact that everyone hates Hydra-Cap and everyone is fine with Gadot that Anti-Semites are not coming to Comicon.