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Known Abuser Scott Allie Will Provide “Oversight” on Image Comics’ Las Vegas Shooting Benefit Anthology

As allegations of sexual harassment and assault ripple through other industries with some actual consequences, comics continues to be…comics. Eddie Berganza is still working at DC. And now Image Comics has brought on known abuser Scott Allie to provide “oversight” on Where We Live, a comics anthology whose proceeds will be donated to the survivors of the Las Vegas mass shooting, which left 59 people dead and more than 500 injured.

Allie’s abusive behavior when drunk, which allegedly included groping and biting, has reportedly been an “open secret” in the comics industry for quite some time. Back in 2015, multiple Dark Horse employees – on condition of anonymity, shared a joint statement with Janelle Asselin at Graphic Policy. “Scott’s conduct at conventions and in other professional settings is widely known within Dark Horse,” the statement read, “and many have witnessed it directly. Several staff members have gone through internal channels to stem the behavior and have been met with assurances that the problem is being properly investigated and taken care of, but no further action has been spoken of, and greater emphasis is routinely placed on the need for employees’ silence. The lack of visible reprimand leads us to fear Scott will continue to hurt people.”

Allie finally stepped down from full-time employment at Dark Horse about a month ago, though Dark Horse’s statement said that would “continue his career in comics as a freelance editor and writer and will work with Dark Horse on several key projects.”

Now, Allie has been brought on for Where We Live. The creator of the anthology, J.H. Williams III, is from Vegas, and so he was moved to do something after the shooting. “A week passed before the shock cleared enough to decide I wanted to help create a benefit book project for the survivors,” he said in a statement, “along with oversight from Eric Stephenson, Scott Allie, Dave Stewart and Wendy Wright-Williams. I’m thankful for them and Image Comics offering so quickly to do this. With this book, titled Where We Live, our hope is to not only help those in need after this tragic event, but to also somehow start a real conversation on avenues for preventing this sort of violence from happening again in the future.”

Now, I’m not saying that you should all boycott the book or you’re condoning abuse. The victims of this shooting are facing catastrophic medical bills, and they deserve all the help they can get. Nor am I blaming you if you do boycott it. Fuck abusers using the victims of gun violence as their shields, and fuck supporting their work.

The only blame here lies with comics companies that keep letting this happen. 

Personally, I would never want to hire an abuser again. But I can maybe understand giving them a gig where they’re only responsible for their own work, where they aren’t managing anyone or controlling anyone else’s career opportunities. Maybe. (Though with so many other decent humans you could hire, why?) But while I can’t be sure of what Allie’s exact position on this anthology is, generally someone with “oversight” on an anthology is in a position of power to decide which creators to solicit and how to edit their work. Allie therefore could have power over an artist, writer, or editor he’s previously harassed, who would otherwise want to donate their work to help people.

Someone with Allie’s history should not be in that position of power, and the fact that comics continues to hire and enable abusers after they’ve been outed, when even notorious industries like film are starting to muster the courage to do something, is pretty damning.

(Via CBR; image via Image Comics)

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