- Christian Cooper, the Black birdwatcher who had the police called on him in Central Park, wrote a comic connected to the experience.
- “It’s a Bird,” the first chapter of DC
Comics‘ new digital-first collection of stories that center marginalized voices, was released for free online on Wednesday.
- In the comic, a Black teenager uses binoculars for
birdwatchingthat tell him the stories of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Amadou Diallo, who were all killed by police.
- This moment is about the ones we’ve lost, and how we’re going to keep from losing any more,” Cooper said in a press release. “And if you’re not talking about that, I don’t want to hear it.”
A new digital-first graphic novel by
Cooper, a former comics editor and writer, wrote the first chapter of DC Comics’ graphic novel that centers marginalized voices, called “Represent!”
Cooper was birdwatching on May 25 when he asked
Video footage of the interaction quickly went viral on social media, leading to Amy Cooper losing her job (and, for a while, her dog) and becoming known by the nickname “Central Park Karen.”
The interaction occurred on the same day that Floyd was killed while in Minneapolis police custody. As Floyd’s death sparked worldwide protests over racism and police brutality, Cooper’s experience introduced the conversation of how racism can often lead to police involvement.
“It’s a Bird,” Cooper’s chapter of the graphic novel, was released for free online on Wednesday. The comic follows a Black teen named Jules who, while birdwatching, uses special binoculars that tell the stories of Floyd, Breonna Taylor, who was killed by police on March 13, and Amadou Diallo, who was killed in February 1999.
In a press release about the graphic novel, Cooper said he hopes young people will read the book and be “inspired to keep the focus where it needs to be, which is on those we have lost and how we keep from losing more.”
While Cooper wrote the story for “It’s a Bird,” artist Alitha E. Martinez, inker Mark Morales, colorist Emilio Lopez, and letterer Rob Clark Jr., collaborated on the project.
“There are people who are invested in distracting us right now, and there are people who want to distract us from their failures on so many other things,” Cooper continued. “That’s not what this moment is about. This moment is about the ones we’ve lost, and how we’re going to keep from losing any more. And if you’re not talking about that, I don’t want to hear it.” Advertisement
The full chapter is available for free here.