Awhile back, I wrote on my old blog (now gone) about how I had torched my copies of writer Marion Zimmer Bradley’s books after I found out she was a child abuser and molester, and had facilitated abusers and abuse in fandom, including that of her husband Walter Breen, who was repeatedly prosecuted for pedophilia until he finally ended up in jail where he died.

This sort of thing was an open secret in fandom for decades, and you can find many articles on the web. I don’t need to link them. They are easy to track down.

In my experience, this behavior in fandom was common. I faced a number of pros, mostly those on the border between science fiction and comics, who had absolutely no boundaries regarding sexual behavior with young kids (I recall many “libertarian” arguments with adults who argued that children should be sexually active by 12, and maybe 9 wasn’t so bad, if the kid was sophisticated,) and had numerous issues with a series of pros I could name, some in SF, some in comics, some of whom are now dead. I’d just as soon leave them dead or aged and rotting where they belong and not bring them up again. But my teen years until I was about 25 in the SF/comics fandom community were pretty brutal.

Even with my mom at shows, almost always right at my side, creepers had to creep. One now dead SF/fantasy writer, on failing to get me up to his hotel room when I was underage, made a play for my mom. When I found out he keeled over for good on his couch years later, I did not shed a tear.

A lot of this ended up as subtext in A DISTANT SOIL.

So, upon learning Bradley was an abuser and that her circle of fans and friends were enablers, I cut ties and put the books on the pyre.

Now, it is not at all uncommon for folks where I live to burn their paper trash. I mean, we need the kindling. I love books, I think they’re dandy, but I don’t want to pass her books on. If you like her stuff, keep reading, but I can do with my property what I like. Including tearing the pages out of them and feeding the flames.

That’s not censorship. I’m not a government. I’m not a activist group. I’m someone who made the decision to throw the trash out.

I put up that post and got excoriated by a segment of fandom who A) felt the need to rush to the defense of their idol B) felt the need to inform me I was a NAZI for burning a book C) felt the need to imply that I was a child molester myself and trying to hide it by appearing exceptionally triggered, wounded and promiscuously virtuous by openly shunning child molestors and D) felt the need to inform me that they didn’t really care if Bradley’s books hurt anyone’s feelings, they were just going to keep reading them and ignoring people who made emotional decisions like engaging in show-offy acts of blogging on the internet.

Now here we are, some years later, and I confess a few of these people pissed me off so much, I kept an eye on them for awhile.

Like, right now.

And what do I see? The same people who had a complete conniption fit that I set a match to a book by a known pervert, are crowing about tearing down Confederate statues. Why, these things hurt people’s feelings! They are monuments to ugly acts! They trigger people! Tear ’em down! Destroy the offending art!

The exact same people who stood up for a child molester. The exact same people who had absolutely no understanding of the level of disgust I could have for a book by a woman who moved in social circles that brutalized me and openly preyed on children. The exact same people who compared me to a NAZI for not wanting that small monument to her perverted self in my house now want you to believe they are super woke about monuments in parks where they never go, in states where they’ve never been.

Super Duper Woke.

When it comes to fandom, some people are never, ever going to be woke about anything. Because their eyes are never open when it comes to their idols.

No one forced you to throw out your Marion Zimmer Bradley books when I wrote that post. You keep right on reading. I don’t give a damn. I read books and admire art by really shitty people every single damned day. I’m going to keep right on doing it. I have enough emotional distance from these people to do that.

Hell, I don’t get triggered by a lot of things, probably none of those statues in those parks.

But I totally understand that other people do. And I totally understand when other people decide they don’t want art or books by people they don’t like.

That’s not a censorship issue. At. All.

It’s about human decency.

And I think it’s pretty ironic that your Super Duper Woke selves can crow about how anti-racist you are, but cannot get past the fact that your idol is a child molester.

I can’t read her books the way I can read other awful people’s books, because I do not have the personal emotional distance to do that. I was there with those people. I saw that shit. I heard what they said. I know what they did.

You want to pretend all that doesn’t exist. You want to cover that up.

You don’t want to make your fandom look bad.

Kind of a microcosm of the whole country right now, innit?

Comments running on my FB page HERE.