Once more into the Groth-quote:
Consider this: TCJ, as has been pointed out, sold half of what Cerebus did. (That sounds about right: Cerebus probably sold around 20,000, the Journal around 9,000). Surely, a greater proportion of Cerebus readers cared about Dave Sim and Cerebus than that of Journal readers. It was Sim who first published a Dave-Sim-Is-Hitler analogy comment in a forum that would have far greater impact on Dave Sim’s livelihood than the Journal — his own comic, read exclusively his his own fans. Logically, then, Sim did far more to cultivate what he perceives as the Sim-Is-Hitler public persona that he believes currently exists (which, keep in mind, only exists in Sim’s head). So, we have several layers of lunacy at work here: the first is that there’s wide perception of Sim-as-Hitler (which there isn’t) and the second is that the Journal was solely responsible for this when it was in fact Sim’s own Cerebus that was, logically, far more responsible…..
Let's suppose an analogous situation, but with Groth as the subject.
Groth writes an editorial that, surprise of surprises, at least one of his readers doesn't like.
That reader writes a letter to the JOURNAL, calling Groth "an aesthetic Nazi."
Groth decides to print this letter in order to refute it, as I presume Dave refuted the letter in which one of his readers called him a Nazi.
I think the idea of Groth-as-Nazi is such a striking piece of satire that I commission a Bigtime Artist to do a sketch of Groth in jackboots, maybe strutting in front of a barb-wire fence in which a bunch of superheroes are confined. Maybe Nazi-Groth says something like, "Our good friend Doctor Wertham was entirely too EASY on you." I print the sketch on my blog.
Miracle of miracles, though my presence on the web garners far less attention than that of COMICS JOURNAL, the image of Nazi-Groth creates a little controversy.
Now, if I understand Groth's logic above correctly, then it follows:
Any responsibility I might bear for the dissemination of the Nazi-Groth image is far less than the responsibility Groth himself bears for:
(a) Printing the offending letter publicly in order to refute it,
(b) Penning an essay so offensive that it moved a reader to call him a Nazi,
(c) Both of the above.
Isn't logic wonderful?