Cosplay, Charlottesville, and Trump

Charlottesville: Attention-seeking fans attracted to media hotspots don’t always get the kind of reaction they want. Bleeding Cool News, in “The Supergirl Cosplayer Who Went To Charlottesville – Guess Whose Side She Was On”, reports that celebrity cosplayer Alisa Norris (aka Alisa Kiss) marched with her partner and other white supremacists last weekend. She was not there in costume, but drew attention to her participation by complaining on Facebook about how the media had portrayed them.

Once the negative reaction set in she denied being in the march, however, Bleeding Cool has video showing her walking hand-in-hand with her partner while he shouts anti-Semitic slogans.

Even the webmaster of her “adult entertainment” site is outraged and has taken it down in protest. The website, AlisaKiss.com, now only displays a message denouncing Alisa Kiss for promoting racism.

Phoenix: Cosplayers on the other side of the culture war are being called to protest Donald Trump’s appearance in Phoenix on August 22. The organizer of a counter event, Cosplayers Rally Against Hate, urges fans “to help drown out the hate groups that will make an appearance by showing up to the rally in cosplay.”

Notes:

1) We are not an official organization, but a rag-tag diverse group of creatives and costumers.

2) We plan to be as safe as possible. I encourage folks to plan exit strategies, and we will be following the main protest groups for updates and recommending staging/protesting areas.

3) Keep your messaging positive – dont react to hate. Also, PLEASE do not wear military-themed cosplay. Wear “safe” looking cosplays, and comfortable cosplays in case of the weather. Signs encouraged (some examples on the page).

[Thanks to JJ for the story.]

42 thoughts on “Cosplay, Charlottesville, and Trump

  1. It’s nice to see people taking the current rise of neo-fascism seriously. I guess when Godwin himself says “feel free to call these people Nazis” they’ve passed some threshold of deniability.

  2. Well, I’m not a cos-player, but I was already planning to be there on Tuesday to protest against our idiot Pumpkin in Chief. I exhort all AZ-based fans to come and do likewise!
    suggestion for the cosplayers: Choose a costume that incorporates a gas mask!

  3. Anonymous on August 18, 2017 at 4:47 pm said:
    Brendan: I’d be leery of wearing any mask as I’m betting the Phoenix police will be confiscating them so anyone who engages in violence can be identified.

    No, I’m not saying our side I’ll will be violent as I expect to them be on their usual behaviour but they can’t tell the other side to not wear masks if our side is.

    And there are groups whose rhetoric does come to close for comfort for me of such Nationalists such as Bannon and they have amply expressed in words and in violence their hatred of globalism at G8 meetings and the like. And those groups do do wear masks.

  4. @Rose Embolism: I’m a little surprised to hear that people were cosplaying Nazis in the first place. The local/regional cons I’ve been to have always prohibited wearing military uniforms after a certain year*–I think 1900 is popular. I had always assumed this was standard practice.

    Meanwhile, I’ve decided to look on the bright side. The next time I am in an online discussion about diversity et all in fandom and someone starts arguing that “as soon as all the old people die off everything will be fine”, I can point out that Nazi Supergirl isn’t that old.

    *(Excepting people who are actually in military service, who can then wear their real uniform to the con if they so desire.)

  5. I’m a little surprised to hear that people were cosplaying Nazis in the first place.

    Oh, there are always silly people who should have known better.

  6. Meredith, there’s a popular anime/manga called Helsing, which has Nazis as main characters. People often cosplayed from it.

  7. The neo-fascists seem surprised that people don’t like them. Not “lime” them.

    Missed the edit window by quite a bit.

    Neo-fascists are probably not surprised that no one limes them.

    I bet we could find people willing to do it, though.

  8. Cat: I was thinking in terms of possible pepper spray/tear gas. Dressing as a Wastelander from Mad Max makes a good excuse for having a gas mask handy.

  9. Limes should not be wasted on those wastes of oxygen.

    Also, I love that doing porn is more acceptable than being a Nazi nowadays.

  10. All this is having a large impact in Sweden. The whole debate has changed. Before Charlottesville, nazis had been allowed to attend our largest political happening of the year. They had been allowed to have an exhibit at our Book Expo. Liberals was talking about how important it was with freedom of speech and how both sides were bad.

    After Trump’s speechand the murder in Charlottesville, no one wants to have anything to do with that. The same people who before wanted rights for nazis are talking about how others have been blind to the dangers of nazism.

    So I thank Trump for his unpopularity.

  11. I’d be saddened but unsurprised if cosplaying fans of Donna Barr’s ‘Desert Peach’ got some backlash.

  12. @Lis @kathodus

    Limes are expensive, unless we’re talking about rotten limes. Rotten fruit is, after all, the traditional artillery of antipathy.

  13. Mark Richards notesLimes are expensive, unless we’re talking about rotten limes. Rotten fruit is, after all, the traditional artillery of antipathy.

    You’re welcome to come by the food pantry I help staff. Summertime always bring a lot of rotten tomatoes and oranges as those two things go bad fast. We donate much of the leftover veggies and fruit, strawberries also go bad fast, to a local pig farmer, but you’re welcome to it.

    Now reading: the forthcoming de Lint novel The Wind into My Heart, James Stoddard’s Evenmere novel and rereading Emma Bull’s Finder.

  14. Great minds do not think alike: my first reaction to Lis’s comment was that liming the participants at today’s so-called “Free Speech” rally would be a great way to make sure that wouldn’t be able to riot….

    @Cat: (wrt my recent comment on Finder): unfortunately, the railroad wasn’t completed in reality; sometimes fiction is better.

  15. Cosplaying as Supergirl while attending a White Supremacist rally with a partner who was shouting anti-semetic stuff.

    Umm…

    Do these people have any idea how many of the early comic giants were Jewish? Like…at all? Including a couple of swell guys, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, who may not be directly responsible for Supergirl but may have indirectly had a wee bit to do with her coming about…

  16. Schnookums — She wasn’t in costume at the march. Otherwise, no argument with your comment.

  17. Oops, I meant to say basically “She cosplays as Supergirl and also does this?”

    Does this mean I owe you a drink now?

  18. “liming the participants at today’s so-called “Free Speech” rally would be a great way to make sure that wouldn’t be able to riot”

    And to take the definition drift even farther, I first read that as “able to rot”

    I’ve cosplayed in Captain Jack’s WWII greatcoat, but that’s only part of a uniform. Years back someone in a coffee shop – not even close to the con – asked me if was German. “No. British.” in as frosty a tone as I could manage.

  19. Pingback: AMAZING NEWS FROM FANDOM: 8/20/2017 - Amazing Stories

  20. It continually amazes me that these people felt so secure in their views that they thought that everyone else would say, “Yeah Nazis worked out so well before. Let’s do it again”.

  21. She did something incredibly stupid and is reaping the reward.

    As a separate issue, I find the endorsement of violence in some of these comments disappointing.

    Regards,
    Dann

  22. @Dann

    My city celebrates the Battle of Cable Street. We honour those who fought back against fascists. I can’t quite understand why we should consider those who fight back today to be so much worse.

    Everyone has to figure out where their own line is.

  23. @Meredith

    Soooo…..international socialists fought national socialists.

    My line is somewhere else.

    Regards,
    Dann

  24. @Dann

    That misrepresentation is a meme on the right in the USA, I know, but you should know better than to try and raise it as an argument amongst a mixed group.

  25. The Nazis never were, and aren’t now, in any way socialists, anymore than the People’s Democratic Republic of North Korea is Democratic. Nazis, both historically and currently, favor crony capitalism.

  26. The Nazis only kept the “socialist” bit in their name in order to fool stupid people. Evidently it’s still working.

  27. The actual phrase in the Nazi name is National socialism, and it’s as different from socialism as lightning vs. lightning bug. National socialism believes in sharing the plentitude of a nation amongst its true people (as defined by race primarily), and that the primary threat to national success is other races invading and altering a nation’s character, and the best cure is active exclusion thereof from anything and everything. (oh, and such things among the national race as alternate gender/sexuality or handicaps are failures because of outside influence and therefore can be excluded too.)

    Not exactly much like what plain ol socialism professes which specifically refuses to exclude anyone, regardless of race, creed, country of origin, etc.

  28. What I know is that the practical history of socialism involves different factions fighting one another for control. I also know that the Nazi platform contained racist nonsense along with the usual socialist nonsense (i.e. nationalizing industries, seizure of private profits, etc.). That they elected to run the economy using a system of tight regulatory control over private firms (i.e. a form of crony capitalism) instead of directly nationalizing things is a hair I don’t see as worth splitting.

    Additionally, the Soviets got along swimmingly with Nazi Germany right up until the Nazi’s invaded. So, different factions fighting one another for control.

    Regards,
    Dann

  29. When someone says “What I know is…” followed by a display of ignorance, I think that says it all.

  30. In the ’30s, Time magazine would use scare quotes when they spelled it out: National “Socialists”.

  31. The group that were being resisted at the Battle of Cable Street were the British Union of Fascists, who were definitely fascists. Who espoused British Fascism. And liked the Nazis because the Nazis were also fascists.

    Fascism is a thing, you know, and can’t be hastily rewritten to be socialism just because it would be convenient for some of the American rightwing to pretend a far-right ideology is really a leftwing one.

  32. I don’t know where the idiotic idea that Fascism and National Socialism equals Socialism comes from, though I’ve seen it a few times, inevitably expressed by Americans, including those who should really know better.

    So take it from someone who is from a country that was ruled by Nazis approx. eighty years ago and where part of the country (not my part though) was ruled by actual Communists until 28 years ago. National Socialism and Socialism are not the same thing. They are not even remotely similar and indeed are diametrically opposed.

    Indeed the “socialism” bit in National Socialism was something of a vote-grabbing scheme intended to persuade the working classes to vote for the Nazis rather than for Communist, Socialist and Socialdemocratic parties. It worked, too, and initially the Nazis threw some bones to those voters, e.g. by making May 1 a public holiday, while busily banning and persecuting trade unionists, Socialists, Socialdemocrats and Communists. And those Nazis who actually took the socialism part a bit too seriously were purged from the party (and usually killed off, too) within the first two years of the Nazi rule.

  33. @Cora – I don’t know where the idiotic idea that Fascism and National Socialism equals Socialism comes from…

    I think there’s a box of silly ideas stored somewhere, ready to be pulled out by people who would rather not think more than shallowly about something. Instead, hey, here’s Nazis were socialists, oh, there’s that idea that (the US) Democratic party birthed the Klan so they’re forever responsible (that one’s especially popular these days). It’s like memes, only with a few more words.

  34. “Lime them”….

    I suggest researching some good recipes – perhaps “To Serve Humans” has some good ideas – so the nazis will be tender after being properly prepped to throw them into the oven…

    I am partial to ribs and thighs, myself – dark meat.

    (Que the responses .. 3..2.. :^)

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