I got so swept up in the fallout of this interview that I totally forgot to share it on my own damn website. I encourage any writers on wordpress to read it, and to read the other Writer’s Lounge articles for the detailed backgrounds and insights of other internet authors.
If you have any questions or comments, just post them here, since the interview’s comments section has been closed.
Interesting you should mention Bogleech! I started following him shortly before Awful Hospital made its debut, and he’s the only other ‘pasta writer I read with any regularity aside from you.
What I think I’m going to say is this: I can agree does get pretty heated on his blog sometimes. I’ve been following it for about as long, I know what I’m talking about. However, at least those are serious issues that I can’t entirely blame him for being angry at.
Meanwhile, in my view? Most people who use the term ‘SJW’ unironically in this day and age seem to have a certain lack of respect for the issues. Notwithstanding the people talking about them – many of them are pretty reasonable if you can withstand the (again understandable) emotions being thrown around.
I’m not specifically taking you to task here, mind. You’re a great writer, and I consider you pretty reasonable as well. But you and me and Bog? We’re human, all too human.
Bah, meant to type “agree HE does”. The perils of guest commenting!
Well that answers the question, “Can people edit their comments here once they post them?” Aheheh.
There’s a difference, though, between “having an opinion” and “being a bully.” People who earn the ironic SJW label earn it for falling into the latter category: having no understanding of the issues they’re ranting about (mistaking chauvinism for feminism), clinging to a dangerously black-and-white worldview, shoving it down people’s throats, and quoting them out of context when they don’t convert (in order to make them look like the bad guy on their own blogs for the benefit of their equally child-minded hugboxes). Or they’re passive-aggressive about it, and keep dancing around any rational points made against them, or change the subject entirely when they don’t have a BS response to the other person’s argument, either of which is enough to infuriate anyone they’re talking to. I’ve faced both varieties more than once, and both add up to Crucible Syndrome (I’m calling it that, after the girls who started the Salem Witch Trials): insecure people, often clinically depressed, who seize any opportunity to make themselves feel important at the expense of others.
People like Bogs, Zoey Quinn, and others who utilize these tactics don’t care about social issues. They care about self-empowerment, and that’s what gives them such a deservedly heinous image. That’s also why I loathe them and refuse to interact with them. I’ve abandoned forum communities because of their bullyish tactics, and because they actually gloated about the emotional breaking of normally rational-minded people. I’ve had to moderate them on websites where I’m a staff member: it’s not pretty trying to reason with the unreasonable, whether they’re passive-aggressive or running an inquisition. We had one member on a certain gaming site who had a marvellous talent: she would regularly start fights in the chatrooms over the pettiest things (a stranger casually messaging her, interpreting negative criticism as a personal insult, etc) and bully people away from the site, and not only did she have a small club of white knight followers to assist her endeavors and gang up on anyone who didn’t take her crap, but she could also make the site moderators feel like THEY were doing wrong by trying to stop her. She was the Poison Queen of the Community for about three years before we finally realized what she was doing and kicked her ass to the curb. I don’t qualify that sort of person as “human”; maybe “sociopath” is more accurate.
Even when my temper gets the better of me, I know when to call it quits. I’ll offhandedly say what I think of someone, but I won’t follow them around and try to string them up to make myself feel important, and if someone challenges my assertion I hear them out. And I tend to be rational in the first place: I meet a stimulus, I think about it, I reflect on it, and THEN I react to it. The people I’m talking about skip the middle steps like they’re some kind of amoeba, mainly because they’re so desperate to feel significant. What they really need is counseling.
And that’s not to say anyone who uses the term SJW is talking about the same people as me. I’m talking about the people I just described, for whom the term was invented as a snide joke. Some genuine assholes throw it around willy-nilly. The question to ask is, are they dismissively talking about people protesting the gang-rape epidemic in India that isn’t being solved fast enough? or are they talking about people protesting Samus Aran, who is anything but a damsel, getting punched by a big strong man in a fighting game? To an SJW the latter is taboo; to a feminist — a real, honest-to-god feminist — it’s progressive. Do they define feminism as “hatred of men”, “solving women’s issues”, or its actual definition, “solving ALL gender issues?” Regardless, people shouldn’t get up in arms about issues they’ve never actually read or thought about rationally. If Quinn were a feminist, she would represent women rather than herself, and she wouldn’t obliterate entire forums and threads for speaking of her in an unflattering way, as if she’s Queen Fucking Elizabeth. And if people like Bogs were rational, they wouldn’t support people like her, let alone follow her example.
Fortunately lots of SJW’s are waking up even now, realizing what fools they’ve been. Hopefully Bogs will join them soon and patch things up with his peers, because he really hurts himself the most when he pulls this kind of shit. I’d be happy to support his work then, but until then he’s getting lumped in with Bruce Willis, Kanye West, and other people I don’t care to support for fear that it only encourages their awful behavior.
Holy shit, and here I thought I wrote one little paragraph.