Michael George and the Pittsburgh Comicon
I awoke to a slew of e-mails from people either asking me about, or trying to get me to not go to, the Pittsburgh Comiccon. Not that I had decided one way or the other, although a lot of friends of ours (including ComicMix’s own Timothy Truman, Mike Grell and Robert Tinnell) will be there. It’s a good show.
This boycott is in response to yesterday’s conviction of Michael George, who, along with his wife Rene, is the promoter of the show. Michael was convicted in Michigan of murdering his first wife 18 years ago. The details of both the crime and the conviction are in the Macomb Daily.
I understand the sentiments of those who feel that they do not want to support a convention run by a convicted murderer. But I strongly believe such feelings are misguided.
First of all, the Pittsburgh Comicon is also a major charity event. Last year, for example, they raised nearly $30,000.00 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation and some $5,000.00 for the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. Both are quite worthy causes.
But, more important, Michael George will not benefit from the profits of the show. Quite frankly, he’s set for life – if spending the rest of your life in a Michigan State penitentiary is your idea of “set for life.” It’s Rene who will lose out if this show winds up in the red.
After a long and horrific trial, Rene probably can use a few bucks. No doubt she’s looking at massive legal bills that were hardly of her making – despite her relationship with Michael, she didn’t kill anybody. She now has to create an entirely new life from the ground up; as such, she’s another victim of Michael’s efforts.
I don’t know if I’ll be at the show as I’ve got commitments to other shows and I can only spend so much time on the road, a lesson I learned the hard way last year. But I’m going to try. It’s a good show, Rene is a good person and the Pittsburgh Comicon no longer has anything to do with the sad horror that is Michael George.
Mike Gold is editor-in-chief of ComicMix.