The LGBT activist group spearheading a boycott against a film adaptation of the science-fiction novel Ender’s Game on account of author Orson Scott Card’s anti-gay activism shot back on Wednesday against Card’s statement calling for tolerance from their community.
“Leaving aside the fact that Card thinks gay civil rights didn’t exist in the mid-’80s, which is pretty insulting to the post-Stonewall generation frontline against a little something called AIDS — this is about us, here and now,” Geeks Out said in a statement posted on its website. “This is about our community refusing to financially support an extreme anti-gay activist. We didn’t read his diary, and we’re not taking dinner table conversation out of context — Orson Scott Card has a very public record of far-right comments against marriage equality as a concept and LGBT folk as human beings.”
In a separate phone interview, Geeks Out board member Patrick Yacco told The Raw Story on Wednesday the group was encouraged by the fact Card had to issue a public response at all.
“I’m very excited that we were able to get a reaction from Orson Scott Card,” Yacco said. “He was very silent about the hullaballoo around his writing Superman.”
In a statement to Entertainment Weekly published on Tuesday, Card, a board member for the National Organization for Marriage, declared the issue of marriage equality moot in the wake of recent Supreme Court decisions striking down both the Defense of Marriage Act and California’s Proposition 8.
“The Full Faith and Credit clause of the Constitution will, sooner or later, give legal force in every state to any marriage contract recognized by any other state,” Card said in his statement. “Now it will be interesting to see whether the victorious proponents of gay marriage will show tolerance toward those who disagreed with them when the issue was still in dispute.”
“Tell families in 37 states where gay marriage is still illegal that it’s a ‘moot issue.'” Geeks Out answered in its statement. “Tell citizens in Indiana, where it’s now a criminal act for same-sex couples even to apply for a marriage license. Tell that to the Virginians whose governor wants to recriminalize sodomy. I doubt very much children delegitimized and stigmatized by red-state legislatures across the country are kickin’ [sic] back with a cold drink to let historical inevitability do the work now that the Supreme Court has ruled on DOMA.”
In its statement, Geeks Out also quoted from earlier inflammatory statements made by Card over the past few years, including remarks made in 2008 to the Mormon Times saying, “marriage has only one definition, and any government that attempts to change it is my mortal enemy.”
The campaign against Card’s involvement with the movie is the second public outcry against the author in 2013; in February, a separate group of fans spoke out against comics publisher DC Comics when it announced plans to have him write a series featuring the company’s flagship character, Superman. Wired reported in March that the series, Adventures of Superman, went on as planned, but without Card’s involvement.
“We haven’t been in touch with DC Comics,” Yacco said. “As far as we’re concerned, that project is over. As far as I know, there hasn’t been any discussion about that story ever seeing light.”
On Tuesday, Geeks Out also published a blog post listing what Yacco called the “Top 20ish homophobic reactions” to the group’s protest. But he said the “Skip Ender’s Game” campaign had also drawn success in a limited time.
“We’ve also gotten an overwhelming amount of support from people [who] are in favor of the campaign,” Yacco said. “We’ve had almost 2,000 people sign up in just the past 48 hours to pledge to skip the movie, so we’re excited about that.”
Supporters of the film have also argued online that boycotting the film would endanger the crew who worked on it, an argument that seemingly ignores the fact that production crews are paid while the movie is being made, which is not impacted by how it performs at the box office.
“We’ve heard that argument before,” Yacco said. “We just want to stress that our disagreement is purely with Orson Scott Card himself. We know there are a lot of people involved in the movie that support LGBT rights, such as [Ender’s Game stars] Harrison Ford and Abigail Breslin and other people involved with the movie. We appreciate their commitment to the LGBT community and look forward to supporting them in their next creative endeavor.”
[Image: “Ender’s Game” author Orson Scott Card at a symposium at Brigham Young University in 2008, via Wikipedia Commons.]