I’ve seen a few comments suggesting that Dan DiDio’s comments do not constitute a clear gender bias.
Considering that DC’s percentage of female creators has declined from 12% to less than 2%, let’s flip this idea on its head.
In what other industry would people accept or tolerate a ratio of 98% women to 2% men, and the excuse “We want the best [men] on our [payroll], who should we have hired?” In what other industry would that not immediately trigger litigation for discriminatory or exclusionary hiring policies on the basis of gender?
Would you, for example, accept a mayor of a major city staffing a city department with only 2% of male applicants and then saying “We want the best police / firefighters / paramedics / lifeguards / emergency responders / etc., who should we have hired?”
Would you, for example, accept a president of a major university only admitting 2% of male applicants to an undergrad or graduate program and then saying “We want the best students / scholars / academics / etc., who should we have admitted?”
Would you, for example, accept the CEO of a major medical research facility only hiring 2% of male applicants and then saying “We want the best doctors / researchers / scientists / etc., who should we have hired?”
Would you, for example, accept the armed forces only recruiting 2% of male applicants and then saying “We want the best soldiers, who should we have recruited?”
In response to another criticism, would you be able to name people who should have been hired on the spot?
It’s easy to be a Monday-morning quarterback with these issues, but how many people could have answered that question - at that moment - with a list like G. Willow Wilson, Fiona Staples, Colleen Coover, Nicola Scott and so on?
By the same token, taking the lack of an answer to that question as evidence that people don’t want to read work from female creators is a logical fallacy in many ways. It takes one person’s lack of an answer in that moment and attempts to extend that across an entire spectrum of readers. It’s a hasty conclusion drawn from a limited sample size over a very brief period of time. And those aren’t the only ways in which it is logically unsupported. Click the logical fallacy link above and you’ll see more.
I don’t think that the undesirability of a gender ratio of 98% men to less than 2% women in the workplace is something that needs to be debated, particularly when - with even a brief amount of research - it is easy to identify women who are more experienced, have worked with that employer and have won awards for their work in the field, yet were not hired in favor of men who may not have as much experience, may not have as long of a tenure with that employer and who have not won the same or equivalent awards for their work in the field.
To put this in even more practical terms, think of it as being laid off, then watching people who didn’t work there as long, didn’t have as much experience and didn’t have your level of recognition in your job get rehired before your former employer gives your job back to you … if you get it back at all.
And this issue really is that simple.