The actual Martin wishes for me to start by saying that he is an LGBT person, and is also aware that gay male couples do not commonly get pregnant. As usual, Actual Martin and Rob’s personalities don’t much resemble those of Comic Martin and Rob, which is good news, because I don’t want a purple carpet and Actual Martin disdains that style of hat on anyone other than a private detective or a broadway gangster.

Justice, as a concept, has a lot going for it. There is not enough of it for everybody, but everybody can, in some way, generate extra justice through the actions they choose. It is a commodity with both an infinite demand and an infinite supply, which to my knowledge makes it unique amongst such things, although I haven’t navel-gazed enough lately to be certain about that.

Add ‘social’ before justice, and that gives it more direction. A person can uphold social justice by considering society and their place in it, attempting to welcome (some of) those who society rejects or diminishes, and through their actions, change society as a whole. (Actual) Martin and I both have many things to consider and a lot of people to welcome, but the essential concept is universal. A single human may generate justice at whim solely by not being a Jerk. Once people crack this formula, all that remains is to work out what a Jerk is, and how, precisely, to not be one.

Then add ‘internet’ before ‘social justice’, and discover vast amounts of the human race hollering their findings. They demand their shouts be answered meekly or not at all, for they’ve thought about it so hard, so how could anyone possibly disagree? The game is a free-for-all, with splintering factions and ecstatic vitriol, which makes it a fine (if grisly) spectator sport, but not exactly the noble cause of humanity that its offline counterpart represents. In their quest to pin down the Jerk, they have forgotten the simple truth: the Jerk was within them the entire time, waiting for a taste of power. (Jerks dine on little else.)

I took umbrage at the essential idea of this comic as it was first written, which triggered a debate between Martin and I that lasted a good half hour before we realised we were essentially arguing the same position with different buzzwords. In the end, I think we both shifted slightly, so the real winner was our friendship – if we can tolerate mildly different social views, then I am confident that we won’t fall out if he becomes a university Marxist or I have romantic dalliances with goats.