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Saturday, January 27, 2018 

Paul Levitz is a Planned Parenthood apologist

The former DC writer/publisher has just given a candid interview to Comics Beat about a project he worked on to benefit the disgusting Planned Parenthood, proving he's just as lowly in personality as fellow veteran Gerry Conway. First, here's the site's propagandistic description and tacit admission of where they stand and they don't like Donald Trump:
In August 2017, ComicMix launched their Kickstarter for Mine!, a comics collection benefitting health services organization Planned Parenthood. Mine! features contributions from Eisner-Award winners and nominees to independent creators and up-and-coming artists, aimed at celebrating freedom and choice, and to help dispel myths and misconceptions about sex, gender, and reproductive health. Fortunately, the Kickstarter was a success, raising nearly $60,000 for the collection’s production. All proceeds generated by the book will go towards Planned Parenthood, which is ever at risk of being blocked from receiving federal Medicaid funding by President Trump’s administration. Such a development would be particularly concerning as Planned Parenthood provides health care, medical screenings, education, and resources for reproductive and sexual wellness to people from all walks of life.
Gee, 60 thousand bucks - assuming its true - doesn't sound like an awful lot to me, though it does make clear that rabid leftists siding with PP are unfortunately out there. Predictably, they blot out all mention of the dark activities behind the scenes at PP, including screw ups like punctured uteruses during operations at unregulated clinics.

Now, as for Levitz's words themselves, he gives some fascinating details as to his own involvement in the project:
AJ FROST: Hi Paul! So nice having the chance to chat with you. Let’s start off with the basics: How did you get involved with the Mine! project? How did you get in touch with the fine folks at ComicMix?

PAUL LEVITZ: The guys shot me an email. I was vaguely aware of [the project] from a conversation with Glenn Hauman—I think at a signing I was doing when I saw him—and he talking about trying to get it organized. I offered to be helpful in any way that I could, in terms of contributing or in terms of helping them connect with Planned Parenthood. And then once they got it up and running, I think Joe Corallo may have been the one who reached out and say, “Hey, why don’t you reach out and do something together? You guys are buddies.” I said sure, and Joe was happy to.

FROST: The story you wrote about Planned Parenthood’s texting program is really powerful. What influenced the story that you ultimately wrote for this comic?

LEVITZ: I admit my prejudices on the subject. The project was important to me because Planned Parenthood does a lot of important work. Not only because of the cultural climate we’re in and the challenges they face, but also because my daughter’s an executive there and the story that I wrote is set in the world that she’s responsible for.
Wow...so not only does he view their "mission" through rosy-colored lens, one of his relatives is an employee at that awful firm. Why do I get the bad feeling one day, I'm going to open up some of the back issues of Legion of Super-Heroes he wrote and find some pro-abortion propaganda inside? If he'd begun as a writer today, the chances he'd pull that crap are certainly much higher. And it's a terrible shame, because I consider the Huntress, whom he co-created with Joe Staton, a valuable contribution to the DCU.
FROST: So, it was important for you to tell this story because of how important this component of Planned Parenthood and because most people might not be aware of it?

LEVITZ: You know the stereotype—political bullshit aside—the variety of contacts that Planned Parenthood has with people is fairly wide. And if you’ve been a client of theirs, you know it. I’ve heard many people I know express personal appreciation. But there are lots of things they do that are largely invisible. The chat text system that they use… I forget the exact number but it touches something like 180,000 people. That’s a lot of people who are concerned, searching for information, and searching for reassurance. Most of us are not conscious of that because we’re not in that situation to be reaching for it. Most of us have a family doctor or are not at a stage of life when we have confusion about these issues or concerns about these issues. But there’s a lot of particularly young people who are searching for help and searching for answers. And I thought it would be good to remind people or make people aware of the sheer weight of that.
If you've been a client of theirs, you know you've been suffering from their operations. Their real life variations on a Frankenstein laboratory have done serious harm to black women in particular. And Levitz has the gall to obscure that and pretend it's more about some stupid texting program? Absolutely shameful, along with his assertion the critiques of the organization are nothing but BS. He doesn't even defend PP from the accusations they conducted businesses involving body parts. I think if you know where to look, you'll find there's plenty of African-Americans who don't appreciate how PP insulted their intellects with all the tommyrot about "health", and potentially endangered the patients more than "helped" them.
FROST: Do you think that the current political climate means that the types of storytelling that are featured in Mine!—as well the Love Is Love comic, the Puerto Rico Strong anthology comic, or even the material that François Mouly and Nadja Spiegelman published for the two volumes of Resist!—is going to be more prevalent in the marketplace? Or, are we just in this new era of politically relevant storytelling anyway, and comics are just one of the best mediums to get all these different kinds of stories out there under one banner?

LEVITZ: Well, comics have a good history of political activity and being a voice for it. Certainly, an awful lot of what went on in the undergrounds in the 60s. There was just an exhibit in the Rare Book Library at Columbia University of the 1960s, and there were a ton of things that were done in cartoon form, evoking the protests against the Vietnam War. I think the benefit books themselves specifically carry a nice emotional weight.

And you know, people respond to them emotionally. I’ve signed more copies of benefit books I’ve worked on than most things that I’ve written; Heroes Against Hunger from the 1980s, for example. I think people like them both because they’re anthologies, so there’s kind of a scavenger hunt element to chasing down all the signatures. But also because they feel good about having participated. Like, “Hey I did a little something and a little portion of the dollar I spent today is gonna do some good.”
While Heroes Against Hunger may have had a positive mission, the whole notion of snuffing out lives in the making most certainly isn't. That's why I'm also disgusted with the late French politician Simone Veil, who legalized abortion while in the employ of pseudo-conservative Valery Giscard d'Estaing in the mid-1970s, and the stupefying part was that a Holocaust survivor would actually do such a thing. In a way, it makes her vaguely similar to Roman Polanski, who, as it recently turned out, committed more than just one sexual offense. And unlike feminist Evelyne Sullerot, Veil never showed any regret or remorse for the harm she wound up doing to French society. From how Levitz frames the whole argument, it doesn't sound like he sees any wrong in PP's repellent trade either.

Besides, while comics do have as much a role in political activity as any other medium, that doesn't mean everything they did even in decades past was in good taste. Though on the plus side, I don't think DC and Marvel ever went out of their way to say fighting the Viet Cong was wrong in itself. After all, during the Silver/Bronze Ages, communism was recognized as an evil ideology that should be opposed; even some liberals at the time didn't like it. Today, sadly, that's all changed.
FROST: Ultimately, what do you hope to achieve with what you’ve written for this book, and for the Mine! collection as a whole? Do you think that it can be used as a resource for people to learn about all these different aspects of Planned Parenthood that they might not have known about before?

LEVITZ: I think with any of these benefit books, you hope that it raises the consciousness on the issue that you’re talking about. And you hope that it raises a few bucks for a good cause. It’s not gonna be life-changing money for Planned Parenthood, but every dollar counts in the process; it goes to help people. And consciousness can be anything from the 15 minutes or half-hour somebody spends reading this book one day, and says, “Oh yeah, I didn’t realize they helped people in that situation,” to in some cases, getting people to volunteer or become more politically active in a specific cause. If you reach a large number of people, odds are you’ll get some of both of those things happening, as well as people who just read it and say, “Oh well that was a nice comic book! What’s the next thing I’m gonna read?” That’s okay, too.
Has he ever heard of the phrase "the road to hell is paved with good intentions"? Because that's what the whole "cause" of PP could be described as. It's interesting to note that the disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein donated to PP.
FROST: Okay, last question and this may sound silly but: Why is Planned Parenthood important? Why do this at all?

LEVITZ: A massive percentage of the healthcare given to women in this country is given through the Planned Parenthood system. Women’s basic health needs are not provided for in many parts of the country. Health costs are a significant burden on families, and Planned Parenthood’s health centers touch people’s lives. If that’s a chat center simply saying, “Oh yeah, that symptom does sound like you should go see a doctor or you should go to a health center, and here’s the address of a place you can go” or, “No that doesn’t sound like a problem. You’re probably okay, why don’t you do x and y,” those are meaningful effects on people’s lives. And when you’ve lived a life of privilege, had a family doctor over the years, had healthcare resources available because of insurance, family wealth, or just where you were brought up, you can easily underestimate the importance that these resources have in places where those things aren’t true.
Reading this last paragraph, you'd think PP was literally the only outfit offering health services for women. I don't buy that. Why, they're not even the biggest. And it's shameful how Levitz airbrushed some of the most offensive activities PP engaged in out of the picture. IIRC, he was DC's president of publishing at the time Eddie Berganza was a leading editor, and Levitz would've been in a position to have him thrown out for his sexual harassment if he'd wanted to, but it's clear at this point he didn't. Which says quite a bit about his form of thinking, if he wasn't willing to take steps on his part to ensure a safe workplace environment for more than just select members of the DC staffers and freelancers.

He may not have always been this shallow in terms of his politics. Sure, decades before, when he first began his comics scripting career, he might've at least been sane enough to keep his political activism to a minimum. But what he's doing now does not do favors for his reputation, and really forces me to separate the art from the artist. And if we're talking in terms of past projects, what's additionally sad is that Marvel associated themselves with PP too in the mid-70s, with a Spider-Man special where the web-slinger took on an alien called The Prodigy. To think even they'd apparently imply to teenagers it's totally bad to have sex, among other stupid ideas.

Thankfully, a lot of PP clinics have been closing in the past year or so, Congress is passing laws to protect infant lives and one of PP's managers has stepped down. Evidently, the public is waking up to how truly awful an organization they are, and that's why Levitz's comics project is bound to be outmoded sooner or later. Even so, it's still very disgusting he'd participate in such repellent propaganda.

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  • I'm Avi Green
  • From Jerusalem, Israel
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