Remembering Stan Lee
On November 12th, 2018, comics creator and superhero in his own right, Stan Lee passed away after being admitted to the hospital earlier in the day. At 95 years old, Lee inspired generations of readers and will undoubtedly do the same for generations to come.
Many teens will know Lee because of the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, which have almost reached Harry-Potter like levels of mainstream popularity, but Lee had done amazing things in his comic books, including this moving message on bigotry and racism in the world at the time. Many teens will be happy to know that Lee often used his massive platform to call out prejudice, and a particular message on the back of a comic in 1968 has stood out for fans after his passing.
Stan claimed that “Bigotry and racism, are among the deadliest social ills plaguing the world today”, words that sadly still ring true fifty years later. In a time where civil rights was a hot topic, specifically in the year that Martin Luther King Jr. was killed, Lee addressed the issue time and time again, stating “The only way to destroy them [racists and bigots] is to expose them—to reveal them for the insidious evils they really are.”
Lee’s forward stance on prejudice shows through in his comic books, such as the infamous X-men team. A group of people, usually comprised of a mix of adults and teenagers, who are being persecuted based on something they were simply born as. Lee’s art had a definitive meaning, and it took a definitive stance on social issues of the time, most of which are still prevalent today.
Lee’s passing can serve as a message about creation and the power every human being has to make a change. Ending as Lee did in one of his “Stan’s Soapboxes” comments from X-Men 56, remember “The power of love — and the power of hate. Which is most truly enduring? When you tend to despair . . . let the answer sustain you.”