Monday, September 8, 2014

Musical Monday - Persona by the Blue Man Group

Because of the raging controversy on the internet this week revolving around those people who self-identify as "gamers" and a set of allegations concerning journalistic corruption supported by evidence that ranged from flimsy conspiracy theories down to absolutely nothing, I have seen a number of assertions concerning said "gamers" and why they have behaved variously like misogynistic asses, screaming children, and ignorant shut-ins. The most common assertion has been that the identity of "gamer" is something they cling to because they have been uniquely alienated from "normal" society, and thus being a gamer is all they have.

My response to this is to simply say that is a load of crap. While they may believe that being a "gamer" is all they have, they are not unique in feeling alienated, or feeling like society doesn't care, or any of the other justifications that have been offered. As the Blue Man Group's song suggests, the feeling of being alone, being isolated, being alienated from society and oneself is something that is common. And most people don't resort to becoming a "gamer" who spins imaginary webs of corrupt conspiracies that always seem to end up targeting women. Gamers are not special snowflakes, and there is no reason to give them a pass because they were the nerdy kids in high school.

Being a "gamer" is not a pass so you can be either a woman-hating jerk or a clueless loudmouth braying about "corruption" without understanding that the tenuous connections made between game developers and journalists constitute nothing of the kind. There are many people who feel marginalized and victimized in this world, and most of them seem to be able to not end up being misogynists or completely ignorant of reality. To use a silly astroturf meme that a fair number of gamers have passed around, being a gamer is not a shield that will protect you when you act like a screaming child. And far too many gamers on the web right now are acting like screaming children.

Previous Musical Monday: Seize the Day by Symphony of Science
Subsequent Musical Monday: Four Dead in Ohio by Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young

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