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Welcome To The Bitchery

. . . or, I follow too many things that link to each other, and this is going to turn into a feedback loop of commenters proving the article right.

So, about a year ago, Luke McKinney over at Cracked.com made a comment about being a straight man being "sexuality's lowest difficulty setting", and John Scalzi picked up on the phrase and used it as a metaphor to introduce the concept of privilege in a pretty straightforward and accessible essay. It got a lot of comments and started a lot of discussion. Then it got reposted on Kotaku. As McKinney says,


"The reaction was like a chemist dropping phosphorus in water: Every frothing bit of the violent reaction only proved the smart people more right. The comment section was the all-you-can-eat undercooked-chicken buffet of intelligent debate: attracting assholes to spew torrents of shit. It was a gallery of every possible way a straight white male could be a dick about it without starring in porn."


(Sounds about right for a lot of comments that happen when sexism or racism gets mentioned on Kotaku.) Anyhow, a year later McKinney has returned to the Kotaku comments and written a take down of the "5 Gamer Comments that Give Straight White Guys a Bad Name". To sum up:

  • #5. Sexy Hot Babes Have It Easier!
  • #4. Everything-ism Is Over!
  • #3. My Life Sucks, So There's No Bias
  • #2. Never Mind Other People, You Hurt MY FEELINGS!
  • #1. White Males Are the Only Minority Left!

It's a pretty good Bingo list, when it comes down to it. Quotes are included and mocked mercilessly. You may or may not like the typical style of Cracked articles, but some of the turns of phrase are just delicious. (Unfortunately, I don't think I'm going to get a chance to use the phrase "pregnancy lotion" in everyday conversation anytime soon.)

"They don't understand that constantly offering to dispense pregnancy lotion does not lube the way to a finer world. The framework of utopia is not constructed from erect penises."

"If your presence causes people to fear sexual assault, your hurt feelings are not the problem in that situation."

"When you view the existence of everyone else as a problem automatically attacking you, you're internalizing the wrong parts of video games."


Of course, the comments are already either "don't read" or "bring popcorn". Scalzi has taken note of the newest development, and I look forward to reading his further thoughts when he gets the time.

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