John Ostrander: Displaced

John Ostrander

John Ostrander started his career as a professional writer as a playwright. His best known effort, Bloody Bess, was directed by Stuart Gordon, and starred Dennis Franz, Joe Mantegna, William J. Norris, Meshach Taylor and Joe Mantegna. He has written some of the most important influential comic books of the past 25 years, including Batman, The Spectre, Manhunter, Firestorm, Hawkman, Suicide Squad, Wasteland, X-Men, and The Punisher, as well as Star Wars comics for Dark Horse. New episodes of his creator-owned series, GrimJack, which was first published by First Comics in the 1980s, appear every week on ComicMix.

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8 Responses

  1. Jarrod says:

    I don’t live there but I’d vote for you if I could, John.

  2. mike weber says:

    Another verse that doesn’t usually get sung (but Springsteen usually does it):

    As I went walking I saw a sign there
    And on the sign it said “No Trespassing.”
    But on the other side it didn’t say nothing,
    That side was made for you and me.

  3. Alex Jay Berman says:

    The country fails, falls, falters. The Dream never does.

    This country has survived bitter partisanship such as this several times, dating back to the years of Adams loyalists versus Jefferson loyalists (look at THOSE articles and libels if you think Fox is bad), through Jacksonian scorched-earth politics, up through Reconstruction and the Teapot Dome and the HUAC. The Dream remains the true aim, and the country’s inner pendulum swings back to the main again.

    (I say this, speaking as a man employed by the federal government, whose job is to fight the federal government itself when it practices injustice upon its employees.)

    And if ever your faith falters, just think on the last verse of Woody’s song; the one which follows the later verse you quoted:

    “Nobody living can ever stop me,
    As I go walking that freedom highway;
    Nobody living can ever make me turn back
    This land was made for you and me. “

  4. Theresa Wiza says:

    Probably many factors contribute to the divisiveness in our country: greed, prejudice, and possibly karma. We took this country away from the Native Americans, stuck them in glorified concentration camps, and then went to Africa to get what we perceived to be stupid nonhumans to act as slaves. Maybe it’s payback. Whatever it is, I don’t see much progression in relation to prejudice or hatred, and I see our country becoming more and more divided as time goes on. Media has contributed to our misperceptions and beliefs, further dividing us into separate camps – us and them, whether through race or political affiliation. Whenever somebody steps forward to bring us together as a nation, others see that person as a threat. Other countries must be so confused by what we call ourselves – the UNITED States of America.

  5. Well said John. I am younger at 37, and don’t have the memories of a different time. I feel like even though this is probably the best country to live in, the greed of the politicians and corporations is limiting us to having a very bleak future. So much so that I have chosen not to have children, for fear of what world they may have. Hopefully it is all just pessimism, but it sure doesn’t look that way.

  6. Ed Leroy says:

    You ask, “was it ever?” Yes it was, though I’m only 58. Certainly not Utopia, but a place where my father transacted business on a handshake, where my neighbor lady rebuked me for using a curse word and there was an expected integrity and honesty. Orwell’s novel Animal Farm explains a lot of what went wrong. He’s targeting communism, but it’s the heart of an individual that makes the difference. For all the rhetoric of fairness and equality–whether politician, businessman, or religious leader–too many have gravitated to “some animals are better than others.” When the words “under God” were added to the pledge of allegiance, it was already too late and too many were no longer under the biblical mandate of sacrifice and service.

  1. July 1, 2012

    […] Read it all This is the original art from John’s column, which refused to fit itself in properly at the top of this page […]