Your last major contribution to Green Lantern is Simon Baz, who is the first Arab-American Green Lantern. What does that mean to you, personally?Facinating how he feels that way, yet doesn't have the courage to mention or acknowledge that the real concern is character's religion. Arabs and Lebanese of non-Muslim backgrounds like himself were far from worrying average Americans as much as any who are from such a background. Yet for someone who says he's all bothered about fear, he doesn't seem brave enough to honestly acknowledge the Religion of Peace he's gone out of his way to apologize for, preferring instead to reduce it all to a matter of "racism" when Islam is a religion and not a race. Gee, what's he so scared of? If he really feels Islam is defensible, why doesn't he show the courage to overcome great fear, per the series he spent too long writing, and say what he thinks is defensible about the Koran? Funny how somebody who's so concerned about Americans fearing outside belief systems seems fearful of citing what they've got a problem with honestly.
JOHNS: My dad is Lebanese. Detroit has the biggest Lebanese community outside of Lebanon. I really wanted to talk about cultural fear. The best thing about Green Lantern – and this is for anyone who ever writes the character – is that fear is never going to be out of date. Batman’s parents can die 70 years ago or tomorrow, and he’s still relevant. Superman can land here 70 years ago or today, and he’s still relevant. As long as Green Lantern is still dealing with fear, it’s going to be relevant. Rebirth really grew out of 9/11. 9/11 happened, and then two years later, I was writing about fear. It was obviously connected. That affected everybody, in so many ways, and Simon was the next step to that. It had been so long since 9/11. I’m half Lebanese, but a lot of my family, on my dad’s side, is full Arabic and they’ve had to deal with a lot of things, in the way of 9/11. Just getting on a plane is a pain in the ass. So, I wanted to write something about cultural fear, and Simon grew out of that. I knew I was going to get some flack for it, from certain groups, and some racist reactions, but it’s a very personal character for me. I wanted to develop somebody like Simon and explore the idea of cultural fear. It’s just a different kind of fear.
His grievance about the difficulties of boarding a plane is misplaced and superfluous too. There's other criminals in history airport security has to worry about, and everybody has to be subject to monitoring for possible danger to other passengers, regardless of race, religion or national ancestry. There's even Islamofascists hidden plain sight that the public needs to be on the lookout for. That could include Colleen LaRose, aka Jihad Jane, who was arrested for plotting to attack cartoonist Lars Vilks in Sweden, and thankfully, she was arrested by the police before doing that.
That Johns is keeping up his stance even after the massacre at Fort Hood and the Boston jihad bombing is reprehensible and does as much a disservice to people like himself as it does to the victims of the horrifying and cowardly attacks by Nidal Hasan and the Tsarnaev brothers, who adhered to the very religion he doesn't even show the courage to mention. There's a reasonable argument one could make that if Johns wants to show some courage, he could also visit and lend his support to groups like 9-11 Families for a Safe America, and offer his condolences to the victims of Hasan and the jihad bombing in Boston. He could even try to write up a story dedicated to the victims of jihad in the comics he gets assigned to script. So far, he hasn't done that, and if he doesn't have the courage to pitch a story that's sympathetic to victims of jihadist terror, then I'm not sure he's qualified to argue about fear, when he remains very superficial and otherwise dishonest about the pertinent issues of 9-11.