Tabletop Gaming's Biggest Problem

Jim_Mount
Jim_Mount

Tabletop Gaming Has a White Male Terrorist Problem

 

Having raised this issue on this forum a few months back, to predictable results, I'm curious whether or not this very important article about unacceptable behavior in the gaming community does a better job than I did. I have a daughter whom I want to get involved in gaming someday, so this issue hits close to home for me. I will call out misogyny, racism, homophobia, transphobia -- whenever I see them. Even if they are "jokes" because to do less, to be silent, is cowardly. "Just be cool" and "don't be so sensitive" are not nor will they ever be on my table.

"The majority of gamers do not engage in online terrorism, but are instead complicit in lower levels of harassment. It is almost impossible to convince gamers that sexist and racist jokes are unacceptable and that they make others uncomfortable and drive people off. Indeed, raising this issue at all often results in threats and more terrorism. "

Enjoy,

Oversensitive, Soapboxing, Dad who Loves His Daughter

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Comments

  • Kallak
    Kallak
    Posts: 458

    No offense, but I really hate articles like that. They are such bullshit.

    As a straight white male, it's "nice" to know that no matter what the problem is, you're to blame. You're a part of the systemic shadowy oppression network designed to keep women and people of other races down. The eternal scapegoat who is responsible for all of the world's evils and who has no defense because of (ironically enough) your gender, skin color and sexual orientation.

    It doesn't matter that you've never engaged in the behavior that you're attacked over, or that you're not at fault for the actions of others simply because they are similar to you, you're still guilty. You're an evil bastard anyway. A "terrorist", a cowardly sympathizer who won't join the revolution against the rest of "your kind".

    You're expected to take responsibility for things you didn't do, make amends to the world at large for them, look out for the well being of everyone else above your own so that they don't have to be bothered to do so, and let's not forget: you have to openly and whole-heartedly support the movement to brand you the enemy of everyone else's freedom, or else you're a racist, or misogynist, or a homophobe, or whatever other wicked label suits the mob.

    Let's bottom line it shall we? Yes, there are assholes out there in the world, of all kinds. Some are indeed racists, mysogonists, etc.. Some are just jerks who are uncaring about a stranger's feelings, or will make a dirty joke and not understand why others are offended by it. Some are people who will be resistant toward new people or new ideas, or what they perceive as an encroachment into "their thing" by "outsiders". Some are criminals who will victimize others if they can, for any of a multitude of reasons.

    But no one group is responsible for the evil of the world, or the actions of "their kind". Not even straight white men. Articles like that one paint a target on the back of every member of the group in question, and perpetuate the cycle of hatred and problems that they purport to advocate against. Just because they target "the man" and not a minority or special interest group doesn't mean that they are right, or acceptable.

    Regarding your concerns for your daughter and the gaming environment, I think you have to treat it just like anything else. Make her understand that there are bad people out there, but that there are good people too - and that she will want to avoid the bad and associate with the good. That she can't drop her guard around just anyone, because like good people, bad people also place their own interests above all others - even if those interests might hurt someone else. Cultivate good judgement in her, and the strength of character to not lay down and die.

    In the end, it's the best anyone can do.

    All the best,
    - Kallak

    Inner Council Member
    CotM Selection Committee
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    GameMaster - Crucible of the Blacksoul (CotM for Jan. 2013)

  • hades200082
    hades200082
    Posts: 15

    @Jim_Mount, as a straight white male myself I take offense at your sexist and racist stereotyping.

    I have a gaming group that is made up of 6 players. 3 male and 3 female.

    One of the female players is playing a gay guy. 

    I have no problem with any of this.  

    If you see a problem with straight white males in gaming then might I suggest that the problem is maybe in the mirror?

  • ketherian
    ketherian
    Posts: 203

    As a woman GM and player even I have problems with articles like this. 

    It is always nice to know there are allies (regardless of their gender) out among the gaming community. I have (rarely, admittedly) had the opportunity to call out fellow-gamers, fellow-writers, and fellow-GMs on their behaviour. And I have heard more than my fair share of horror stories from many, many sources.

    Whenever this kind of article pops up on my feed, I devour it. And it always leaves me feeling quite split. I want to support the victim. And, no matter how you couch it, the author of this piece definitely feels to be (and writes from the point of) the victim. But the other part of me thinks her very unlucky and myself incredibly lucky in that I have so many allies and so very few aggressive opponents in the gaming events, sessions, and groups that I've joined over the years.

    Doxing, threats, and other bad (trollish) behaviour on-line is a known behaviour. And I've had a bit of it over the years. I am exceptionally fortunate that this behaviour has never been as great as what others have faced; but there is a reason I don't use my full (rather feminine) real name on any of my real life contact info.

    I have been accosted in game shops. But again, I was very lucky in that (a) I was there with male friends and (b) the shop keepers (also men) stepped in quickly when they saw it happening and gave me opportunities for a quick escape. 

    I don't ever meet up with strange gamers alone or at my residence. Ever. I have scheduled meet-and-greets with at least one male friend in attendance and always at a public place. Often, I laugh it off explaining that it's more convenient for us both (it's not) or that it's nicer (well, since it's typically been a coffee shop, maybe that one's got a bit more truth). I have had people decline and so never got to join my game.

    Most of my caution is just that. Caution. I do not have the horrible, scarring tales that I personally know others to have. And as to these others--I do not question the veracity of their statements because I've been the one holding a hand, helping with the police report, or standing between victim and attacker. To the people I've listened to - these scars are very real, and our legal system absolutely sucks at protect people (male or female) from perceived threat. Actual threat (where physical violence has already been done and there is a clear case for escalation), they're slightly better at, but only slightly.

    My problem is that there is no good way to call out bad attention without being specific as to who the problem people are. And you do not want to give the problem people more press than they've already gotten, since many of them devour the negative attention like a nuclear-waste eating beast (sorry, probably watching too much Expanse lately).

    Bad behaviour begets more bad behaviour. Or, if you prefer, Trolls flock together. 

    So yes, there are assholes and worse in among our friendly group of gamers. I hope and pray they are not the majority, and from my experience they are not. But it takes only one and the right situation to turn an otherwise confident and talented woman into a terrified wreck. And the stories of the bad seem to always (in any situation) outweigh the stories of the good. 

    So I try to say: My game is safe. I know good game shops where the people care, and are allies.

    I say it every chance I get in every venue I can.

    It's dull, and boring to most folk. But it needs to be said.

    And I call out bad behaviour when and how I see it. 

    Unfortunately, that and holding the occasional hand is the best I can do.

    So, @Jim_Mount, you're not an overly-sensitive Dad. You're just being a good ally, and hopefully, if you see bad behaviour -- you'll be a good friend and stand between the bad and the victim and get the victim to a safe-space. It's never just about shutting down the bad. It's also about being supportive of the victim. 

    And yes, in many cases, that can really tear you in two with questions for both sides that never seem right to ask. I have no good solution for this, but in such cases this is what I do.

    Conversations like this are more important to me than the articles which spur them on. Because if we don't talk about it, from where will the positive stories come?

  • Johnprime
    Johnprime
    Posts: 162

    I've read every post on this thread and so far have not really wanted to respond, but I find I must say something. Yes there is a problem, but in my opinion, you should never call out a group for the actions of one or more individuals. That goes for any group, white, black, brown, male, female, etc. Anytime I see one side or the other complaining about the white male problem, or the white knight problem it chafes at me.

    Yes, I'm a white male, yes, I'm straight, but those are only the surface details. To think that because I'm a white male makes me some kind of bad individual is like saying a book on poetry is a boring calculus book. Yes, they are both books, and yes, they have pages and yes they have words in them, but they are two completely different books.

    I agree that bad things happen, but they happen to both males and females, of every color, caused by other human beings. Unfortunately, some people are just bad and the only thing we can do with those people is to point it out! Also, sometimes the victims are very sensitive, whether it's because enough bad things have happened to them that they see monsters where ever they look.

    Each situation needs to be looked at separately and seriously, making sure that the perpetrator is actually the bad guy and the victim is actually the victim. But each situation is a separate event and should not be lumped in with other events, lest we confuse good events with bad events.

    I agree with you ketherian, when I go to meet with a new player, especially a female one, quite often it's at a public place and if they ask why, I tell them so that both of us are comfortable with the setting and neither is in a situation where we would feel uncomfortable.

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  • twiggyleaf
    twiggyleaf
    Posts: 1,469

    I guess there are bugbears in every society.  I have been gaming for many years and must admit, I have not had to encounter too much horror (outside of the game).  Most of the gamers I have ever encountered are generally quite sensitive.  Our game group presently is all male, with me being the only queer.  They are constantly trying to get my character to marry this half orc woman.  I don't take umbrage.  But I haven't married her ....... yet!   wink

     

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  • Keryth987
    Keryth987
    Posts: 687 edited April 22

    My group has been playing now for nigh unto 20 years (I suddenly feel old). We've had players come and players go, both male and female. We've had to ask players to leave the group (1 female who got so mad at someone she threw a dice bag at his head and his dodging it put a hole in the wall of our host's room, and 1 male who argued everything, was disruptive, and came to the game drunk once)

    I also used to run gaming conventions, with upward of 2000+ people in attendance and guest ranging from Jolly Blackburn to Steve Jackson to Elaine Cunningham. And at none of them did I ever see anyone single someone out because of their race, sex, color, creed, or sexual preference. Worst thing from those experiences was the green cloud oozing out of the CCG room on Sunday morning after a 3 day con.

    I can sympathize and feel for those who have had bad experiences, regardless of their color, sex, etc. But to blame Gaming or to single out one specific group as the issue is just as bad. The problem is not a specific group, but the attitudes of specific PEOPLE. Condemning an entire group for the actions of a few is wrong, plain and simple.

    As for the quote on racist and sexist jokes, well, I've heard my fair share of them, rarely at the gaming table though, and much more at work and such. Do they happen? Probably. So you ask those who are doing them to stop. Let them know its offensive and you don't appreciate it. I speak from experience here because one of my gamers is a staunch and quite vocal atheist, who likes to put down those of faith whenever he can, which to me, being a *gasp* christian gamer, found offensive and insulting. I asked him to stop, letting him know that I respected his beliefs and I hoped he could respect mine, and the jokes ended. Had they not, well, I would have talked to him a second and even a third time and if he continued to persist, I would have spoken to the rest of the group in private and told them what I had done and let them know that I wanted their support in asking him to leave.

    Communication and Education are the keys to ending the kind of behavior described in the article. Placing blame on a broad group, as it is doing, solves nothing.
    Post edited by Keryth987 on
  • Jim_Mount
    Jim_Mount
    Posts: 162 edited April 22

    When I posted this, I didn't think it would be interpreted as a broad attack on white strait males, so I apologize if it seemed like it. I have lots of strait white male friends, after all. Do I really have to say, again, that I don't think and never implied it was the majority of gamers who are behaving like creeps? I don't and neither does the author of the article.

    I want to raise awareness, because this is an issue that hits close to home and one I care about.

    My hope is that the community can get past the hurt of being called out and take some (minute, really) responsibility for what is a documented problem, like it or not. Whatever your personal experiences are and little anecdotes might be, there is still a big problem.

    The responsibility here is not to say, "well that's not me and my group." The responsibility is to call out and kick out racism, misogyny, homo- and trans-phobia when you see it, and like @ketherian said, support the victims. That means extending a hand, offering support, being understanding and not taking it personally when a victim needs to lash out a bit or raise awareness, and not assuming the victim is to blame. That's standard operating procedure for those of us in the world outside fandom who embrace inclusiveness.

    The safety and comfort of a woman, person of color, or LTGBQ should not be forfeit at the convention entryway.

    Post edited by Jim_Mount on
  • Bortas
    Bortas
    Posts: 442

    Whatever your personal experiences are and little anecdotes might be, there is still a big problem. The responsibility here is not to say, "well that's not me and my group." The responsibility is to call out and kick out [bigotry] when you see it.

    here here

    -bort

    Morwindl - Darkness Falls

  • Kallak
    Kallak
    Posts: 458

    @Jim_Mount, I'm sorry man but I have to call this as it is. When the author writes an article about the "white male terrorism" problem against women, minorities and LGBT persons, she's making a broad attack on straight white males, period (it's almost as if it's in the name of the article or something). And so are you by making a nonspecific, directionless "call out" of the members of this community who have done nothing.

    You can label it "raising awareness" if you want to, but that doesn't make it less of a conversational hand grenade - with straight white males as the crowd it is thrown into. And to say that we (straight white males) need to "take responsibility" for the issue is bullshit too. I take zero responsibility for anyone's actions but my own - and damn the person who thinks they will arm twist or guilt trip me overwise.

    Instead, How about a little individual responsibility? How about people have enough common decency to NOT be total and complete dicks to one another? How about people NOT be naive and put themselves into situations where it's easier to be victimized while counting on the good will of complete strangers to protect themselves? How about people NOT try to blame the innocent by getting them to admit guilt/complicity (ie, "take responsibility") under the guise of raising awareness.

    Again, let me try to bottom line it, slightly more bluntly this time: People need to have basic morals, and if someone doesn't have them, avoid that person because eventually they will be a problem. People also need to not be morons. Don't think that random people are going to care about you and your safety as much as you do - because they don't. Take precautions, be a decent person, don't associate with jackasses. Finally, if something bad does happen to you, target the guilty persons and call it a day. Don't be an Emily Garland and open yourself up to mountains of Internet trolls until you write a stupid and problem-continuing article that we're all forced to talk about because somewhere out in the universe, there are people who are assholes.

    Goodnight.

    All the best,
    - Kallak

    Inner Council Member
    CotM Selection Committee
    Writer/Editor - Words In The Dark
    GameMaster - Crucible of the Blacksoul (CotM for Jan. 2013)

  • Jim_Mount
    Jim_Mount
    Posts: 162

    And let me be as blunt as possible and explain "victim blaming" to you.

    Victim: A strait white male raped me.

    Victim Blamer: Liar! Me and my friends would never rape you!

    Its not about you, dude.

  • Keryth987
    Keryth987
    Posts: 687

    OK, going to put this in perspective. Someone I know was date raped in college by a guy in her college who put a ruffie in her drink.

    With the assistance fo family and friends she faced this person down, reported him to the police, and went through the entire legal process/battle

    Which is what should have been done

    What would be wrong would be for her, after that, to write an article and title it " College Has a White Male Terrorist Problem" because of the actions of one person

    And what you call anecdotes and 'not in my game' is not that but people trying to point out that they HAVE done something about it, they don't tolerate it, and it doesn't happen in their games.

    What this article does is no different from someone writing an article entitled " Islam Has a Muslim Terrorist Problem" or " America Has a Black Male Criminal Problem"

    Labeling entire groups for the actions of a few or one is wrong. Its not raising awareness, its creating an atmosphere of fear

  • Jim_Mount
    Jim_Mount
    Posts: 162 edited April 23

    Maybe I've been in the progressive and feminist activist echo-chamber too long, but the idea of taking personal offense to a discriminated-upon group's generalizations seems hilariously primitive. I confess, I don't get upset and defensive when POC blame white people for slavery, either.

    Post edited by Jim_Mount on
  • Jim_Mount
    Jim_Mount
    Posts: 162

    Just a quick query, do my detractors here agree with "All Lives Matter" too? Just curious.

  • Kallak
    Kallak
    Posts: 458 edited April 23

    Saying that this article does more harm than good and continues the cycle that it theoretically seeks to end is not victim blaming. Nor is expecting people to take their own safety into account when out and about in the world as it exists today.

    And if you see no issue with branding groups of people with a label based on a stereotype or the actions of a severe minority of said group, then I say you've missed a sizeable portion of the point behind the progressive/feminist/minority viewpoint, or you're just hypocritical on that issue.

    And lastly of course, it's interesting to see you calling taking offense to such generalizations as "hilariously primitive" given that so much of the movement behind the "echo chamber" you've spent all this time in grapples with combating that very issue. Takes one to know one I guess. 

    Actually one more, can you be more specific as to what you mean by "All Lives Matter". Is this a formalized movement now? Last I knew, it was more of a "you're not the only ones whose lives matter black folks" kind of retort.

    Post edited by Kallak on

    All the best,
    - Kallak

    Inner Council Member
    CotM Selection Committee
    Writer/Editor - Words In The Dark
    GameMaster - Crucible of the Blacksoul (CotM for Jan. 2013)

  • Jim_Mount
    Jim_Mount
    Posts: 162

    No need to get persnickety Kal. I see the issue is simply one I'm not going to convince you is well ... an issue. Doesn't mean sexism in tabletop gaming isn't an issue though, just because you think it doesn't pertain to you or personally attacks you or whatever. I can't make you understand something you are choosing to wave off and shout down and I don't feel much up for name-calling which is what this will devolve into.

    I don't even need to wonder why you feel the way you do, a way of thinking that just leaves me cold. The article does a thorough enough job explaining it.

  • Kallak
    Kallak
    Posts: 458

    I think you're sort of missing my entire overall point here. Is there a problem with people victimizing others? Sure, BUT it's not something that is specific or unique to the realm of gaming, or specific/unique to any one group of people. Also, it's not something that can be solved through generalization. One might as well blame the boogeyman, it's equally effective at combating the problem.

    The issue as I see it, is that it comes down to the individuals collectively. Like what Keryth said, the "not in my game" mentality is a way to fight the problem, as much as anyone can be expected to fight it. Running a game where basic respect for one another is a requirement is really all you can do.

    Unless some specific behavior or person's actions are confronted, no progress is made, particularly by branding people with labels. Joe and Fred were acting like assholes toward Marie, so I told them they need to stop or else they are disinvited from my game is a specific targeting based on individual actions. "Guys, we've got a white male terrorist gaming problem to solve" does nothing.

    As a specific example, I think that what Emily Garland went through is terrible, but I also think she has made things worse with her article. She won her court case and could have easily written an article about that, or being brushed off by the game company. But applying a label to all straight white males because she was barraged by rabid fanboys online is just stupid.

    I'll leave it at that. If that makes you feel cold, then there's not much I can do, nor will I lose any sleep over it. Your viewpoint doesn't exactly give me the warm fuzzys either. Just do me the favor and not label generalizations as fact, yeah?

    All the best,
    - Kallak

    Inner Council Member
    CotM Selection Committee
    Writer/Editor - Words In The Dark
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  • weasel0
    weasel0
    Posts: 244

    And that's been my issue with most "liberal" ideologies. It seek to homogenize, group, and label. It removes personal responsibilities and assigns group blame trying to still utilize the failed "it takes a village" approach.

    Humans are individuals. Every person(of whatever), for themselves, takes responsibility for their own selves.

    I heard this once and thought I great quote(if only I could remember where/who from)(and I'll claim paraphrase here too):

    Gamers are the most open and accepting of any race, color, creed, nationality,  sexuality, and smell as long as you play the right version of the right game.

    So as long as we can hold true to that and smack the assholes who don't, I see nothing but just another venue for veiled anger, hate, and/or jealousy. Whether provocated or not or is irrelevant when aimed at the current whipping boy that is the white straight(oft Christian) male. 

    Always enjoyed the irony of that from the "tolerant."

  • bloodiedporcelain
    bloodiedporcelain
    Posts: 7

    Responses like the ones I see in this thread are why I tend to be skittish and avoidant when it comes to group gaming stuff unless there are people there I know and am comfortable with. My last game store I spent a lot of time at, I was only okay with going to alone because the owner was female and almost always there. She also made it a point to employ just as many women as men, so there was almost always a woman on staff. Why? Because she wanted to avoid the horror stories outlined in the linked article. 

     

    I used to work at a gaming store and the primary reason I left was because even as an employee, I was subject to sexist treatment and sexual harassment. We had a patron who prided himself on being able to unsnap my bra as he walked by behind me. I asked him to stop, he called me an over sensitive little girl (I was 18... barely out of high school, he was in his 50s, I think), and when I went to the owner, I was told to tell him to stop and ignore him, that it was my reactions that were causing him to do it. They didn't want to lose his business (he spent an ungodly amount of money every week on everything from TCGs to RPG books to minis of all kinds), so my ability to feel safe at my place of work didn't matter. And the others in the shop... almost all of whom were men... all knew what was happening. None of them did anything and when I asked another employee, senior to me, to say something in hopes it would help, he brushed me off. 

     

    Does this mean that every man in that shop assaulted me? No. But they sure didn't do anything to stop it, which is nearly as bad as doing it in the first place. Eventually, I had to quit because I was an anxious, nervous wreck and no longer effective in my job, or able to enjoy the parts I'd formerly loved. 

     

    Men like the one who assaulted me and the ones in the article linked, count on the fact that other men in the environment will usually not do anything to stop them. That is why those who never did those things get called out as part of the problem. If you don't do anything to stop it when you see it, you're part of the problem. Period. 

  • Johnprime
    Johnprime
    Posts: 162 edited April 27

    The point that most of these guys are making here is that we will do something to stop it if we see it happening. Period. It's a shame that not everyone will do something like that, but when ever I've seen someone uncomfortable in a situation where someone else was doing that to them, I've said something about it and got called nasty names. But it's stopped those who were causing the issue.

    Again, the main issue that I have is we need to stop generalizing about people's behavior, they need to be called out, whether they're causing the issue or not doing anything to stop the issue!

    Notice, I'm leaving my comment gender neutral, because it can happen to anyone, unlike what seems to be the main narrative these days.

    Post edited by Johnprime on

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  • DerkG
    DerkG
    Posts: 60

    Bloodiedporcelain, I have read this topic over the past weeks and have also chosen not to respond, but for a different reason. 

    First let me say the owner of the shop you used to work at is a disgrace. Plain and simple. No customer is worth tolerating such behaviour, instead they should have kicked the customer out for this behaviour, or have brought it to the attention of authorities as well. I would certainly not stay a customer at a shop where this was the norm and I'd like to think I'd speak out against it.

    That said, I do have a problem with being tarred with that same brush just because that creep happens to share my gender, and probably skin tone too. It sends the message that, as part of the problem, I am not welcome to participate in the discussion and may as well not bother. I want to be on-side, but that gets kind of hard when I am constantly told I am the enemy.

    In your words:

    That is why those who never did those things get called out as part of the problem. If you don't do anything to stop it when you see it, you're part of the problem. Period. 

    'If you don't do anything to stop it when you see it, you're part of the problem' - agree, 100%

    'That is why those who never did those things get called out as part of the problem.' - this is where I disagree strongly, as it basically excludes everyone with a Y chromosome from being part of the solution, or from the discussion. 

    A constructive dialog to my mind starts with inclusion, not exclusion. I hope I managed to get this message across without causing offense. If not, my apologies but I do not know how else to put it.

     

     

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  • SkidAce
    SkidAce
    Posts: 722

    That owner is a disgrace, and you can believe I (and anyone in my current gaming group) would have stopped it immediately.  Or left the store (with you) never to return.

    I hate jerks.

  • Kallak
    Kallak
    Posts: 458

    Hello bloodied, welcome to the discussion.

    I'm sort of lost on why people expressing the fact that they are offended by that article lumping them in with the bad guys unjustly makes you skittish.  I guess not wanting to be branded as an asshole for no reason suddenly makes me one? Guilty as charged for the fact that crime exists no matter what?

    Based on that logic, I must inform you that there are poor unfortunate men all across the globe who have met, dated or otherwise encountered bitchy airhead women in life, so I must now call you and all of the other women on these boards out because we have a bitchy airhead women problem. And if you are offended by that, and aren't trying to fix the problem of bitchy airhead women in the world, then you are guilty of being a part of the problem.

    I'm hoping that you see the absurdity of that last paragraph and can now understand the viewpoint that is being expressed by the "opposition". We are not your enemy, and we don't deserve to be called out with the enemy simply because we also happen to be white, have penises and like girls.

    All the best,
    - Kallak

    Inner Council Member
    CotM Selection Committee
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  • Bortas
    Bortas
    Posts: 442

    I think we can all agree the shop owner is out of line, and no patron is worth being allowed to assault whomever they please. I personally find it especially egregious is that the owner is also a woman.

    As a security professional, who unfortunately sees this behavior a lot, and with customers that CAN'T be removed (because they are ER patients - laws prevent that), I work with my clinical staff (sadly) nearly daily on connecting with law enforcement to press charges. The amount of staff of all levels (doctor, administrator, all the way down to housekeeping) that are assaulted by patients is... heartbreaking.

    As much as your story saddens me, and as much as I would like to think I would act to intervene, I also want to see victims of assault (Regardless of the assault, the gender of the victim, the gender of the assailant) press charges against the people that act out in such way. Unfortunately, what that patron did is flat out assault, period. Even if the shop owner didn't choose to remove the patron, you could have your own restraining order.

    I think the issue at hand, and part of the divisiveness we see is related to one side wanting to see victims empowered, and another wanting to see victims being listened to and stood up for. I must ask: can't and shouldn't we be doing both?

    -bort

    Morwindl - Darkness Falls

  • bloodiedporcelain
    bloodiedporcelain
    Posts: 7 edited April 28

    Why does it make me skittish to see a bunch of seemingly grown men make an issue facing women about their hurt feelings? Hmmm...

    This thread is literally the "not all men" hashtag all over again.

    Let me ask you something: When the FBI puts out numbers regarding crimes like forcible rape and in those numbers it shows that whites make up for 65% of charges, do you get upset at being "lumped in with the bad guys", or do you understand that you can have something in common with those despicable people (skin tone, in this case) and still not be a part of it? What about the studies that show somewhere around 60-65% of men in college studies have self-reported that they committed acts that qualify as rape? Do you get upset because you, too, have a penis? Do you make the conversation about how we shouldn't talk about it being a problem committed by and large by whites or by males? Because that's not what you should be focusing on. You should be focusing on the victims and what you, as an empowered member of society and this community can do to help fix it.

    Here's a clue: Step 1 is to stop making it all about you.

    @Bortas: I really wish that at 18, after having already survived being raped in highschool, I'd had the ability to go to the police. I should have. But I couldn't bring myself to do it. I'd seen lives ruined (usually those of the victims) for reporting sexual assault. And when people I thought were my friends and cared about me reacted to me going to them by saying I was overreacting and if I didn't like it, why was I still friendly to him (he was a customer, if I'd been a jerk, I'd have lost my job), etc etc... all I knew was that I didn't want to go through anymore than I already had. I was also living on my own and had bills to pay, so I didn't want to risk getting fired before I had another job lined up, so that didn't help anything.

    Apologies for the multiple edits, but the morning was something of a whirlwind and I'm still a little scattered from running errands and packing and all in prep for my flight tonight.
    Post edited by bloodiedporcelain on
  • Kallak
    Kallak
    Posts: 458

    I don't participate in social media, so I have no frame of reference for whatever the not all men thing is. I assume by your context that it was an argument where men said, we present in this discussion didn't do anything, we don't want to be baselessly blanket labeled, and women said too bad you're men.

    As far as "making it about me", I'm not. I'm making it about what your side is trying to do, namely generalize guilt based on physical characteristics. Until that FBI stat says that 100% of those crimes are committed by straight white men, your side is wrong to label it as such, end of story.

    And finally, you seem to have a warped version of what my (or any other random guy's) responsibilities are, so let me spell it out for you. We are not responsible for ensuring your safety or that of anyone else. We are responsible for our own safety and actions only. So by not being a perpetrator, we are in fact doing our part. Making the choice to act to assist a victim when we see one is morally great, but amounts to going above and beyond in the grand scheme of things.

    All the best,
    - Kallak

    Inner Council Member
    CotM Selection Committee
    Writer/Editor - Words In The Dark
    GameMaster - Crucible of the Blacksoul (CotM for Jan. 2013)

  • bloodiedporcelain
    bloodiedporcelain
    Posts: 7

    And finally, you seem to have a warped version of what my (or any other random guy's) responsibilities are, so let me spell it out for you. We are not responsible for ensuring your safety or that of anyone else. We are responsible for our own safety and actions only.

    And that is where I'll stop being a part of this discussion. If you really feel you have no responsibility to the people around you, you are part of the problem.

     

    Let me make it very clear: If you don't commit these acts and you stand up against it when you see it happen, the article is not about you. It's about people who share a whopping two (three if you include gaming) things in common with you.

  • Kallak
    Kallak
    Posts: 458

    People in society have the responsibility to not endanger or victimize others (ie, they are responsible for their own actions). They are not responsible for the safety of others. Good people will go beyond their base level of responsibility to help, but it's not a requirement - it's part of what makes them good people. Understanding that doesn't make me part of the problem, so insist if you want, but you are wrong.

    Bring forth an objectively written article that's not intended to put a target on anyone's back but the actual perpetrators, and I'll sing it's praises from the highest mountain. Defend slanted trash and I will argue against you, it's that simple.

    All the best,
    - Kallak

    Inner Council Member
    CotM Selection Committee
    Writer/Editor - Words In The Dark
    GameMaster - Crucible of the Blacksoul (CotM for Jan. 2013)

  • BearerOfTidings
    BearerOfTidings
    Posts: 27

    Bloodiedporcelain (yikes, what a screen name!)

    " Let me make it very clear: If you don't commit these acts and you stand up against it when you see it happen, the article is not about you. It's about people who share a whopping two (three if you include gaming) things in common with you."

    Okay, that's what I was looking for when I tripped over this thread this morning.  Most of the people you've been communicating with are likely to be (statistically speaking) stable, older, mature (which does not have to have anything to do with age) people who are (again speaking from the statistics) unlikely to commit the crimes in the article.  Most of the responses came out the way they did because they (and I) were confused about what you were trying to achieve but the above quote now make that clear.  Thank you for doing so. 

    I get from your comments that this is an important issue for you and you have had to deal with multiple bad incidents.  I appreciate your willingness to step forward and try to increase awareness on this issue.  I hope the tenor of the conversation will improve from here on out.

     

    Kallak

    "People in society have the responsibility to not endanger or victimize others (ie, they are responsible for their own actions). They are not responsible for the safety of others. Good people will go beyond their base level of responsibility to help, but it's not a requirement - it's part of what makes them good people"

    Kallak, I am not sure that came out as you intended.  I fully agree with the first part of your statement but have problems with the "not responsible for the safety of others" part.  Your comment implies that if I saw a person being physically assaulted, I would not be doing anything wrong if I walked away and didn't tell anybody.  If I recall correctly (and it's been a lot of years, so I could be wrong), the law disagrees with you.  It states that you have a duty to do whatever you can that will not endanger yourself, such as calling the police or recording the incident.  I agree with your last comment about good people so long as they do not do things that unintentionally make the situation worse. 

    Many years ago I saw a bunch of people trying to help a person who had fallen through the ice.  By the time the "helpers" were done, eight people needed to be rescued.  Nobody died but Search and Rescue were not happy with the "helpers."

  • Kallak
    Kallak
    Posts: 458

    Legal obligation to assist (ie, Duty to Rescue) varies based on location, circumstances and relationship to the victim/person-in-need, however, "The general rule is that a person has no duty to rescue another person who is in peril. Even in an extreme situation..." (source of quote). There are exceptions to this general rule, but duty to rescue is "rarely formalized in statutes which would bring the penalty of law down upon those who fail to rescue".

    In terms of specifically whether or not you're required to call the authorities, it again depends on location. In the US (which is where I am for example) the page lists 10 states that have it as a law on the books (as of 2009). Whether or not that has changed since then, I can't say without more searching.

    All the best,
    - Kallak

    Inner Council Member
    CotM Selection Committee
    Writer/Editor - Words In The Dark
    GameMaster - Crucible of the Blacksoul (CotM for Jan. 2013)

  • Basileus
    Basileus
    Posts: 587 edited May 7

    Mixed feelings.

    I wholeheartedly agree with the fundamental concept that we should treat everyone with decency and look out for each other. That said, generalizing and shaming are both ineffective and inappropriate. Even though the ultimate point was good (the community should be welcoming and supportive, and stand against bad behavior), the article itself was alienating.

    I think most people possess basic human empathy, and don't need to be shamed by random, self-righteous internet strangers.

    EDIT: All that said, I've gamed with men and women, straight and gay, even had a trans GM, and my experience of the roleplaying game community has been overwhelmingly positive.
    Post edited by Basileus on
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