Tom King Apologizes to Jae Lee Over ComicsGate Accusations

Tom King has issued an apology to artist Jae Lee following King's tweet last week that accused Lee of having ties to ComicsGate, a movement that blames the inclusion of people of color, women, and members of the LGBTQ+ community as creators and characters within stories for declining comics sales and a perceived decline in comics quality and has a history of social media harassment campaigns against minority creators and their allies.

On Friday, DC revealed a variant cover by Lee for King's upcoming Rorschach maxiseries and King took to social media to disavow the cover, citing work Lee had previously done on ComicsGate-related projects. In the tweet, King noted that he had not been consulted on the alternate cover and referred to ComicsGate as a hate group. Later in the day, King followed up with a retraction, stating that he had spoken with Lee and that things were "all good".

However, from Lee's perspective things were not "all good". The artist took to Instagram with a statement of his noting that a day he and his wife had set aside to mourn the loss of a beloved pet was instead tied up with the allegations.

"Instead, a part of the internet I avoid like the plague came barging in," Lee wrote. "I had companies I'm working for calling me, friends reaching out to me. I'm seeing hate pouring out of strangers' mouths, accusing me of things I have no knowledge of."

He continued by noting that he is not a part of any group, and while he doesn't mention King by name, he notes that "irresponsible tweets" accusing people of things have consequences -- and quotes King's retraction by noting that things are not "all good".

"I'm writing this because I'm angry," Lee wrote. "These irresponsible tweets are not harmless. They do not just go away. They have real world consequences. They can take away your job. Your life. Your memories. June and I were robbed of a special day. So, no, we're not 'all good.'"

On Tuesday, King issued his formal apology and noted that he would be removing his original tweets.

"As I have done privately, I'd like to publicly apologize to Jae Lee for my actions a few days ago," King wrote. "I should've talked with Jae before I sent a tweet about him that put his career at risk. I made a critical mistake, and I am profoundly sorry. I will do what I can to repair this with Jae, and I will do better in the future. I'm not going to offer explanations because they sound like excuses, and I'm not asking for forgiveness or understanding. I'm just saying I see what I did, and I'm going to try to make up for it. Thank you."

"I have kept up the tweets up to this point in order to show that I was not hiding my actions," King concluded. "I will now take them down."

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Lee has, at the time of this article's writing, not respond to King's apology publicly.

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