Danny agrees with Ill Doctrine’s Jay Smooth about standing up against the attacks on Anita Sarkeesian. He just wishes the message hadn’t been delivered in a way that dismissed men’s issues as “blah blah blah.”
In case you haven’t heard, there has been a major dustup over a Kickstarter project Anita Sarkeesian was using to gain funding for for the examination of women in video games (you can read about it here). It would seem that a rather large number of gamers have viciously attacked Sarkeesian and her project. In response Jay Smooth (the main brain behind Ill Doctrine) made a response video to those attackers.
What I want to look at is a small portion of the video above.
At about 2:54 he says the following:
”And you should recognize that that harassment is wrong and that’s what matters right now regardless of your political position on “misandry” and men’s rights and blah blah blah blah.”
I’m going to try to not dwell on exactly why Jay mentioned MRAs and misandry in such a dismissive manner. I’ll even bet he didn’t mean it but I’ve heard “intent doesn’t matter” way too many times to just let this go.
What I do want to talk about is how that 4-6 second portion could turn off people who would otherwise support the other 3:45 of what he is saying.
When I was listening to that video this bit of it gave me pause and I don’t even identify as MRA. Referencing something like misandry in air quotes and then following up mention of men’s rights with several uses of the word “blah” tell me that Jay doesn’t take these things very seriously. Sure someone may say he meant those words in a“That’s not what we’re talking about right now” way (and those are basically the words he uses).
But even then would it have really hurt to actually mention those things in a way that didn’t belie disregard, if not disgust?
It’s not how he meant it, but it may be how the people he’s talking about take it. And frankly I’d be inclined to not hold it against them if they felt dismissed.
How serious do you expect someone to take you when they see that you don’t think they matter?
Let me clarify. I’m not trying to say that this small portion should distract from Jay’s overall message. Sarkeesian has been horribly mistreated throughout all of this and it treatment should not be allowed to stand. To ensure that it is not allowed to stand, those of us who disagree with her treatment have to stand up and make our voices loud and clear. And those voices need to proclaim that no one, absolutely no one, should have to put up with this treatment and that it doesn’t represent us as gamers or as men.
That being said, how well will certain people receive that message when they are being told that their identity and the stuff they are concerned about simply don’t matter?
For more on this issue, please read Noah Brand’s Video Game critic Draws Hateful Misogynistic Abuse