Today, The Nib released a beautiful and evocative comic by cartoonist Ronald Wimberly about race in comics. Wimberly tells the story of how a Marvel editor asked him to change the skin color of a character who had been historically Mexican and African-American. The editor wanted the character's skin tone to be lighter, and in Wimberly's piece he discusses why this is so problematic.
White privilege is absolutely a real thing, and the wide-ranging implications of this editor's request probably never occurred to her. Being an editor at a place like Marvel or DC means putting up with a punishing monthly schedule and many cooks in the same kitchen. Asking an artist to make a color change is pretty routine - and to many editors, this note would seem like a minor request. As Wimberly makes clear in his comic, however, the request has many problems.