Stop being scared of the F-Word

Calamity

No, not that one that rhymes with ‘duck’. No, I don’t mean ‘Fuck’ either.

Feminism.

nuuuuu

Come back Cosplaycat! It’s not that bad a word.

But I read this thing, that was basically a post about “This whole feminism thing” (Direct Quote).

Okay. While I can see where this person is coming from, I disagree on so many counts. So. MANY.

I’ve been quiet about this for the last couple months (check out Twitter to guess why) but reading this post, and seeing people agree with it on Facebook makes me realise I shouldn’t be quiet any longer.

 Here’s a basic ‘Are-you-Feminist?’ Checklist:

  1. Do you think women are People?
  2. Do you think they deserve the same basic rights and opportunities as men?

If you said ‘Yes’ to the above, CONGRATULATIONS. You’re a feminist. We hold meetings every new moon in the Dreadmoors. Tea and light refreshments will be served.

The Sarkeesian Issue

You don’t have to agree with everything Anita Sarkeesian says about games to be feminist. There are different readings of games, but the fact that she is the first ‘popular’ (in the sense that many people are watching her videos) feminist critic of video games means she is a huge step forward for women that want better representation in games.

You can disagree and state why you disagree, but unfortunately, valid arguments are often co-opted by the actual-for-real misogynists that are running rampant on Twitter these days. My issue with the article linked above was not that it did disagree with Sarkeesian’s reading of Bayonetta (I still think you can be sexy with more clothing, see: Diablo’s Demon Hunter, but whatever) but rather the implication that we feminists in geekdom and tech are seeing issues where there are none.

*Ahem*

Are you fucking kidding me?

No. There are obviously deep, poisonous, issues in the game dev world. To borrow a metaphor from Chris Kluwe, the Gamergate issue is cancerous. It started out with malignant purpose, tricked ‘normal’ people into being a part of it and has grown rapidly at the cost of the host community’s health. Like cancer, it’s going to be a bitch to fight. It’s going to try to spread and corrupt other areas if you excise the malignant mass of harassers.

wpid-wp-1413308444942.jpeg

No, not everything wrong in game dev and gaming is a feminist issue. There are ableist issues, racist issues, and classist ones too. But if you look at the current state of the community and say ‘hey feminists are overreacting’ then you have a serious problem with either understanding harassment vs. normal discussion or research. No one deserves to be run out of their home for posting a fucking joke meme. No one deserves to have their relationship aired to the public under the guise of ‘journalism ethics’. No one deserves to be harassed because their sex doesn’t match their gender and absolutely no one deserves to face any of this over fucking video games.

The most disappointing thing

…has been watching the men who say that they’re allies and support women … do nothing. Hem and haw and not stand up and help. I saw this when I was in game dev, dealing with harassment.

“Well I don’t know why he’s acting like that. I’ve never had a problem with him.” – male peer about harasser putting a password on a shared computer and not telling either female team member.

“He would have been fired 5 months ago if he were working in a company.” – Professor who was advising our project. Harasser was never disciplined to my knowledge, and later sent a libellous series of emails to the prof and our team as a whole.

Step up guys. The men that are chasing women from homes won’t listen to us, they need to hear it from you.

Not just Games: A Personal Confirmation

  • I am a feminist and I believe that cosplaying someone sexy doesn’t negate the fact I want more variety in my games and movies.
  • I am a feminist and I believe that I can be sexy for myself, and still be seen as a person, not an object.Close up Wild elf
  • I am a feminist and I think men can like sewing, cooking and homemaking without losing their masculinity or respect from others
  • I am a feminist and I think ANYONE regardless of their gender, ethnicity, size and ability can cosplay who they want to and should be able to do so without worrying about harassment or reprisal.
  • I am a feminist and I think everyone has different strengths and weaknesses but those are NOT determined by what gender we are.
  • I am a feminist and I believe that it is a sad, disgusting fact that men, women and more are too scared to admit that they are too, because some asshole jerks have made it out to be a negative thing.
  • I am a feminist and I believe that I can be on panels that I have expertise in, other than just being a ‘women in tech’.
  • I am a feminist and I love men, women and people in general. I just hate bullshit.
    • and non-commented code from 10 years ago.  I hate that too.
  • Most of all, I am a human being since I cannot yet be a cyborg. Until that day, I will stare down anyone who tries to treat me like I’m not deserving of the same decency and human respect that men are given.

xox, a grumpy Calamity.

*sips tea aggressively*

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