To the editor:
I am responding to the Aug. 20 editorial. It implied that author Max McCoy sought to make Quantrill out to be a hero in real life.
This view contradicts the author's statements published on Aug. 12. In that article, McCoy tells us that he hopes to humanize Quantrill. I believe that his meaning was taken out of context. The fact is that we are dealing with a work of fiction, the characters of which are to be analyzed in a literary fashion, not a literal one.
If one views a painting of a war scene, we cannot leap to conclusions as to whether the artist is pro or con regarding war. McCoy is exercising his artistic license to "paint" his subject as he sees fit and, in this case, with the acknowledged realization that it would spark controversy.
We should recall that McCoy confirmed his belief that Quantrill was a monster, albeit a human monster. The infamous BTK killer was a man, and the fact that he functioned in society and was considered a good person by many was perhaps the most chilling part of that story.
Fictional works should be judged in the literary arena. I wonder how "I, Quantrill" would have been viewed had the name Quantrill and locale been changed. We should not demonize McCoy or his artistic work. He is guilty only of creating believable characters.