cruelest_month: If you go chasing rabbits... (important annoucement!)
So I was looking at the latest Sunday Linkdump on Sunny Moraine's blog and ughh... Another day, another 101 opportunities to be absolutely disgusted by the desire of certain authors and creators to alienate people and make things exclusive in toxic or uncomfortable ways.

Apparently Mark Millar and some other idiots feel that women should just put up or shut up about comics. I would agree that their comics aren't really for women but then I would argue that their comics hardly seem to be for anyone if this is the attitude they have while working on their titles.

And Orson Scott Card is, as per usual, off being a bigot and a basket case somewhere.

My feeling is that it's one thing to allow the subject matter of your work cause controversy or a variety of opinions. It is another to decide you can fail to care about any minority group because history or the industry or religious views dictate that they don't matter or ought to continue the grand tradition of putting up with bullshit. And it is even another thing to decide only certain people are worthy to enjoy the thing you created when honestly once the thing you created is out in the world, you have no control over who enjoys it or who loathes it or why. And to then go on and on about why a certain group of people aren't allowed... I just... It is incredibly awful and really just sickening.

I have no control over what anyone else does but I am never seeing Kick-Ass 2 or Ender's Game. I doubt my lack of interest in Ender's Game surprises anyone who knows me. But even if Kick-Ass 2 leaves out the horrble scene that keeps getting mentioned all over the place... I have not been a fan of Mark Millar's series and I suspect my enjoyment of the first Kick-Ass movie was simply a fluke.

I just have no desire to spend money that isn't going in the right and positive direction of inclusion. I cannot support something that involves people --even indirectly-- who don't really want to or see a need to appeal to wide range of people. I cannot support something that is comfortable excluding valid and deserving sources of enthusiasm and criticism.

And although I tend to believe Suda51 is just a completely clueless weirdo with very questionable taste, Killer is Dead is definitely not a game for me and not a game, I think, for female gamers. Or, hell, most gamers considering the Gigolo Mode. I feel that, like so many things in the entertainment industry, the people who made Killer is Dead are open to women buying whatever they like but that women are therefore expected to have a "sense of humor" and also get to feel free to not be wanted at the party they just paid good money to attend.

And obviously some of that is more than a creator, developer, author, what-have-you being horribly stupid or stupidly horrible. Some of that is just personal preferences. My reading slump, for example, is not so much a direct insult as it is just looking for love in all the wrong places. And I realize a lot of what people create is for themselves and not for a target audience. But it is when people go out of their way to make other people uncomfortable or excluded that I get really angry.

I don't get it. I don't know why there's this stupid idea that inclusion is beyond the reach of so many people creating works today and why people who can't be arsed to be inclusive have to use bullshit excuse upon bullshit excuse to avoid actually doing something besides being part of the problem. It makes me furious that is is way too much to ask that anything allow for the possibility of someone enjoying it besides some anonymous straight white guy who I'm not even sure exists half of the time. And I will not even go into how depressing it is to have to pin all your hopes and dreams on just the possibility of being included.

Despite my willingness to overlook certain issues with games or books or movies... inclusion is very, very important to me. That feeling of not being wanted is something that a lot of people experience. I know I've experienced online and off basically all of my life. As a result, I spend a lot of my time trying to find somewhere where I can feel like I belong. Typically speaking this is not somewhere in real life but somewhere online or in my imagination. When I read, I look for a book that wants me to read it. When I play a video game, I look for one that wants me to play it. I don't want to look for things that will tolerate my presence but would much prefer that I went on my merry way.

And it is why although they fumble along an awful lot (and I do mean a lot) with promoting games and figuring out how to handle certain aspects of inclusivity, I will still give Bioware a billion chances.

And it is why I had to pre-order Saints Row IV when I honestly never thought I would want a video game like that. And yet Saints Row IV --from what I've heard and what little I've seen as I wait for my order to arrive-- is what inclusion is all about.

And there's plenty of other examples I can think of.

Over all it's the desire for inclusion and the seeking out of things that are open to me enjoying them is why it often confuses me to remember that some douchebag out there has decided it is his (or her) business to tell me to GTFO. The shock has long-since worn off but the angry, frustration, and disappointment never fades.

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Madam Librarian

August 2013

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