|This is the photo of Phoenix Jones by Lucien Knuteson that Cracked.com swiped from my blog and used on their site without asking permission or giving attribution.|
Apparently we have to give a free pass to people like Cracked.com-- "because it's satire!" as everyone exclaims. Still, I feel I have to speak out about the scenario Cracked suggests in their Triumph the Insult Comic Dog style report, "The 5 Most Spectacularly Failed Attempts at Superheroism."
RE: Point number 4: "A Superhero Maces a Bunch of Dancers." Other than a few nouns, this relaying of the "pepper spray incident," as it is commonly known, is a complete falsehood.
I should know-- I was there.
I was trailing Phoenix Jones in Seattle to get material for my upcoming book, Heroes in the Night, in October 2011 when we stumbled across a street fight. I don't feel iffy on this-- one guy was kicking another guy laying in the street in the head, one dude was punching another dude, there was angry screaming and shoving. After Phoenix Jones broke the group up, one person deliberately hit another person in the arm with their car.
If that was a dance, as this writer adamantly suggests, it was one hell of an electric boogaloo. So where does this report from Funkytown come from?
Well, when the police showed up and asked the group what had happened, they decided that saying they were "dancing" instead of saying they were "beating the shit out of each other in a street fight" sounded better. The police, who were none too thrilled with Phoenix Jones, decided to take their word for it, ignore what Jones had to say, and added the frolicking alibi to their report.
Toward the end of the short Phoenix Jones segment of the article, the incorrect reporting accelerates-- no, Phoenix Jones was not arrested and unmasked on live television. No, Department of Social Services did not ban him from ever working with children ever again. I think presenting that last sentence as fact is actually libel, but I don't know, I'm no lawyer.
Am I defending the actions of Jones that night? No. It is what it is and you can read my detailed account of that evening in a Heroes in the Night chapter titled "People Fighting and Pepper Spray and Superheroes and...I Don't Know."
But if there's anything I hate more than getting punched in the face by a pepper spray soaked Russian (it happened)-- it's lazy fact checking.
HEROES IN THE NIGHT, available for pre-order at IPG///BARNES & NOBLE///AMAZON///POWELL'S///INDIEBOUND
Book available OCTOBER 1, 2013!