Orson Scott Card And The Problem With Being A Fan [Op-Ed]

enders game poster

As a response to a call to boycott the movie adaptation of his classic sci-fi novel "Ender's Game," author Orson Scott Card -- known opponent of gay marriage -- released the following statement to EW:

Ender’s Game is set more than a century in the future and has nothing to do with political issues that did not exist when the book was written in 1984.

With the recent Supreme Court ruling, the gay marriage issue becomes moot. The Full Faith and Credit clause of the Constitution will, sooner or later, give legal force in every state to any marriage contract recognized by any other state.

Now it will be interesting to see whether the victorious proponents of gay marriage will show tolerance toward those who disagreed with them when the issue was still in dispute.

Orson Scott Card

Poor Orson. Such a victim.

Yes, "Ender's Game" has nothing to do with gay marriage. But is he serious when he says that the political issues surrounding the fight for equality didn't exist in 1984? Is he serious when he claims that he will become the victim of intolerance now that the tide is turning on gay marriage? Is the debate really "moot"? Is he truly that narrow-minded?

Yes, based on this misguided statement, it appears he is.

I love "Ender's Game." I love the whole series and I intend to see the movie when it hits theaters. Yes, I'm hesitant to support such a buffoon. It's something I'm debating with myself. On one hand I feel like I can see and (hopefully) enjoy the movie while confidently knowing that Orson Scott Card is a fool and his views and my views are on very different ends of the spectrum. On the other hand, I feel like I have to stand against this ignorant man by refusing to stand in line for the film.

But, at the end of the day, I have to remind myself that as a lover of cinema, books, comics, etc I need to separate the artist from the art. Does Card's bank account benefit from my ticket sale? Perhaps. I have no knowledge of his deal. Back in April, during a panel at Los Angeles Festival of Books, Card said:

“If you’d like to see some of the much more filmable works from me, go to ‘Ender’s Game’! Go often! Bring friends! Because if ‘Ender’s Game’ does not do well, you know how Hollywood works [...] They’ll say Orson Scott Card books don’t work on film. [...] Do us a favor, go to the movie even if you’re going to throw fruit! Just go! Pay your admission, don’t sneak in. I really have high hopes for this to be a good film. I think you’ll like it, so we’ll find out. You’ll let me know.”

So it's likely he can financially benefit from my support.

But I don't think that's the issue. Card is vocal. Very vocal. And his being vocal is putting a (deserved) target on his back. Which has ignited the boycotts and controversy. He can't be alone in his views. Hell, I know he's not alone. Many creatives and artists have been disgusting, vile human beings, but have created terrific works. "Rosemary's Baby" is one the great works of horror cinema. Roman Polanski pleaded guilty to having sexual relations with a minor and is currently a fugitive from the law. I still enjoy the film, while I firmly think he's a creep. Woody Allen had an affair with his girlfriend's adopted daughter, and eventually married her. Do I still think "Manhattan" is a brilliant film? Yes. Do I now think that Allen's scenes with the young Mariel Hemmingway are skeevy to the max? YUP!

If you feel disgusted by Card's remarks and his obvious ignorance and insensitivity, by all means, boycott the hell out of the movie. There's part of me that's with you. But there's also that part of me that's willing to look the other way because I really want to see an "Ender's Game" movie. Is that part of me healthy? I honestly don't know. I'm not sure why I care about the movie so much. The older I get, the less interested I am in these loud, obnoxious blockbusters, but for some reason I'm going to see "Ender's Game." And I'm eager to see an adaptation of a book that I've loved for years. I want it to be good. Which means I want it to be successful. Which I suppose means I want Card to be successful.

Sometimes it's tough to be a fan.

Poor Orson? Poor me!

Just kidding.

I know where I stand on the issues of gay marriage. And I know that I stand in opposition to Orson Scott Card. Nothing some dopey author can say will change the fact that many of the people of the United States are finally shouting him down. Which makes him feel like he's alone in his ignorance, and therefore will be treated with intolerance. And that's a very good thing.

What I'm mostly annoyed by at this point, is that he's tarnished the legacy of his great series by being such a lunkhead.

"Ender's Game" is a good book. "Ender's Game" might be a good movie. Orson Scott Card is a bad guy. That's where it all has to end.

What do you think? Will you be seeing or boycotting "Ender's Game"? Let us know!

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of MTV Geek.