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thejeff's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 13,473 posts (14,272 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 2 Pathfinder Society characters. 6 aliases.


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In fairness, I believe the blockade standards have been changed since 2010 and food is no longer restricted.


JohnLocke wrote:

So, the ten Russians captured by Ukrainian forces are evidence of an invasion, hmm?

Ukraine says these guys were fighting with rebel forces when captured. Reports I've read indicate these guys surrendered without resistance and made no threatening moves whatsoever - hardly indicative of being part of an invasion force, hmm? To me, that says these guys were indeed where they weren't supposed to be, and surrendered so as not to cause more trouble.

Russia has a very good army, but even they wouldn't be able to get away without casualties. Some could not be recovered from the battlefield safely - I think it's fair to say that if Ukraine had ANY dead Russian soldiers we'd be seeing them displayed as evidence. You say one unit is evidence of more - but we haven't seen that, have we? Just these ten guys (who have been handed back already, just in case you didn't know).

So these guys, far from being part of an invasion force, may have been:
- drunk, stupid, of-course and without a GLONASS handset;
- military advisors
- decided to desert and join up with the resistance - that plan changed when they had guns jammed in their faces;
- ten VERY GOOD soldiers whom Putin assigned, personally, to the conquest of Ukraine. They failed. Shoulda sent more men, commies!

Yes obviously the capture of 10 Russian soldiers in Ukraine proves that they were the only ones there. Only captured or killed and positively identified Russians are proof of anything and then only proof that those particular troops were there, and they aren't there anymore, so it still doesn't mean anything. Very convenient argument.

The article I linked also talks about casualties, but it is of course, just western propaganda and can be completely ignored.

Military advisers is probably the closest term, since that's commonly used to cover anything from a few guys actually giving advice to thousands of actual boots on the ground. Again, I don't think Russia is openly invading. I think there's good evidence, if not ironclad proof, that they're covertly supporting the rebels, including with actual troops in relatively small numbers.


ShadowcatX wrote:
thejeff wrote:

Are Palestinians arrested by Israel all given due process, phone calls, lawyers and bail?

That's why I made the comparison. When Hamas does it, it's kidnapping. When Israel does it, it's arresting. But it's the same thing.
If you have evidence they aren't being given basic human rights after being arrested I would like to see it.

Amnesty International

"Administrative detentions". Not to mention torture.


ShadowcatX wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
ShadowcatX wrote:
Please note the tunnels your article discusses are the ones going into Egypt, not the ones going into Israel. It is a lot easier to smuggle in a country that isn't quite as hostile, and much harder to use tunnels that go away from your foe to attack said foe.
Which so far have all been military targets, which the palastinians have every justification for doing.
In which case you can't argue that Israel doesn't have a right to invade and kill every member of Hamas they can, if one is at war, they both are.

Two points.

1) They are not at war. They cannot be at war. War exists between states. Israel is an Occupying Power, holding control of the Palestinian Territories. As such they have far more responsibility for protecting civilians under that control than they would in a normal state of war. Hamas is a resistance movement in occupied territory.

2) That said, Israel does have the right to kill or arrest resistance fighters, which would include Hamas's military wing, the al-Qassam Brigades and arguably the senior leadership of Hamas itself. Not, "every member of Hamas", which would low-level bureaucrats and other government officials. However, they do not have the right to disproportionate use of force or excessive civilian casualties. They do not have the right to collective punishment of Palestinian civilians.

But that's all legal niceties and doesn't really matter. Practically, Israel has the right to do damn near anything it pleases to Palestinians as long as it doesn't upset the American public enough that the US government has act on it.


ShadowcatX wrote:
thejeff wrote:
ShadowcatX wrote:
thejeff wrote:
ShadowcatX wrote:
Pink Dragon wrote:
Guy Humual wrote:
No, I'm pretty sure Hamas is a terrorist organization, the question is would they exist if Israel hadn't been so aggressive in it's seizure of land and restrictive control of imports and exports?
Why are you so sure that Hamas is a terrorist organization? They don't seem to be behaving any differently than the Israeli government and most people don't call the Israeli government a terrorist organization.
Do you have proof that members of Israel's government capture and kill Palestinian teenagers, because Hamas has admitted that the kidnappings were the work of their members? If not, I assume you'll be retracting your comments.

Of course they don't kidnap Palestinian teenagers. They arrest them. There's a huge difference.

When they don't just shoot them, that is.

Do you think the teenagers Hamas killed would rather have been kidnapped or arrested?
I'm sure they would rather not have been killed. Other than that, there's not a lot of difference.
Do you think the kidnapped victims were given due process? Were they given a phone call you think? Allowed access to a lawyer? Given bail?

Are Palestinians arrested by Israel all given due process, phone calls, lawyers and bail?

That's why I made the comparison. When Hamas does it, it's kidnapping. When Israel does it, it's arresting. But it's the same thing.


Vlad Koroboff wrote:
Gallo wrote:
I suspect not even the sight of Russian tanks driven by Russian soldiers waving Russian flags driving through the centre of Kiev would be enough proof of Russian involvement for some of you.

There are no russian tanks in the war zone now,there are soviet tanks,and Oplot MBTs.

What's the difference between russian and ukrainian soldier,visually?
Russian flag costs a few dollarz.
So,yes,it will not be enough for me.
Ballistic missile strike against key installations before assault will convince me,though.
How about the Russian Ministry of Defense? And Putin himself?
Quote:
The Russian Defense Ministry, in a curt statement on the incident on Tuesday, said nothing about Russian soldiers being killed or wounded in Ukraine, but admitted that a group of paratroopers had been captured on the wrong side of the border. Asked about their fate on Tuesday night, Putin suggested that they had simply gotten lost and veered into Ukraine by accident. “What I heard is that they were patrolling the border and might have ended up on Ukrainian territory,” Putin said with a shrug. He expressed hope that “there wouldn’t be any problem” with getting them back home, but offered no promises or plans to do so.

Unless you really believe they just wandered across the border by accident.

Regardless, they were there. And most likely, where there's one unit operating, there are more.

OTOH, maybe they really did just get lost. Maybe Ukraine shouldn't be worried about Russia invading. They'll just all wander off in the wrong direction. Invade some other country by accident.


ShadowcatX wrote:
thejeff wrote:
ShadowcatX wrote:
Pink Dragon wrote:
Guy Humual wrote:
No, I'm pretty sure Hamas is a terrorist organization, the question is would they exist if Israel hadn't been so aggressive in it's seizure of land and restrictive control of imports and exports?
Why are you so sure that Hamas is a terrorist organization? They don't seem to be behaving any differently than the Israeli government and most people don't call the Israeli government a terrorist organization.
Do you have proof that members of Israel's government capture and kill Palestinian teenagers, because Hamas has admitted that the kidnappings were the work of their members? If not, I assume you'll be retracting your comments.

Of course they don't kidnap Palestinian teenagers. They arrest them. There's a huge difference.

When they don't just shoot them, that is.

Do you think the teenagers Hamas killed would rather have been kidnapped or arrested?

I'm sure they would rather not have been killed. Other than that, there's not a lot of difference.


ShadowcatX wrote:
Pink Dragon wrote:
Guy Humual wrote:


No, I'm pretty sure Hamas is a terrorist organization, the question is would they exist if Israel hadn't been so aggressive in it's seizure of land and restrictive control of imports and exports?
Why are you so sure that Hamas is a terrorist organization? They don't seem to be behaving any differently than the Israeli government and most people don't call the Israeli government a terrorist organization.
Do you have proof that members of Israel's government capture and kill Palestinian teenagers, because Hamas has admitted that the kidnappings were the work of their members? If not, I assume you'll be retracting your comments.

Of course they don't kidnap Palestinian teenagers. They arrest them. There's a huge difference.

When they don't just shoot them, that is.


Guy Humual wrote:
Pink Dragon wrote:

The things brought in through these tunnels is neither contraband nor done through smuggling. The tunnels themselves are not illegal.

The tunnels do not lead from Gaza to enemy territory. The lead from Gaza to Palestinian lands that were stolen from them at gunpoint and now occupied by Israelis.

Hamas is only a "terrorist organization" because that is what they are labeled by those who wish to vilify their efforts in defending their lands from occupiers who are stealing the lands at gunpoint.

No, I'm pretty sure Hamas is a terrorist organization, the question is would they exist if Israel hadn't been so aggressive in it's seizure of land and restrictive control of imports and exports?

And even more would they be able to evolve into something other than a terrorist organization, like so many other terrorist organizations* have done in the past, had Israel and the United States been willing to work towards that end.

*:
Such as Sinn Fein, the PLO, Irgun, etc


ShadowcatX wrote:
meatrace wrote:
ShadowcatX wrote:
And once again, everything is Israel's fault and Hamas can do no wrong. My bad. Much better to spend your efforts making tunnels that will get your people killed than to spend those same efforts saving your peoples lives because, obviously, if you can't make everything perfect for anyone you shouldn't try and make anything better for anyone.

I know you like to talk about how evil Hamas is, but remember that Israel has an effective blockade set up and an admitted policy of only letting enough food and supplies in so that the population of Gaza is always on the edge of starvation.

Maybe tunnels so you can sneak in contraband (i.e. food) is also important.

I'm sure that's what the tunnels were for, sneaking food into the country. Right. . . If you believe that I've got some ocean side property I'll sell you on the cheap.

Beyond that, I wonder, was the gain worth provoking Israel and forcing their hand and the thousands of people who have died from such?

Most of the tunnels were. Food and other supplies. Including military equipment of course.

Some were for attacks on Israel. Judging by past practice with the tunnels, not for attacks on Israeli civilians, but on soldiers. Gilad Shalit, for example, was captured in a raid through a previous tunnel.

Whether it was worth it or not depends partly on what you think Israel would have done if Hamas hadn't been rearming and digging tunnels. If you think Israel is simply being provoked into defending itself, then it seems obvious that it wasn't worth it. If you think Israel isn't quite so pure in it's motives, it's hard to fault a group under its thumb for trying to arm itself and prepare ways to strike back.


LoreKeeper wrote:

Somebody mentioned "poisoner". Now given OP's example of a psion, there is no reason why a player cannot play a sorcerer, call it a poisoner, focus on appropriate spells (sleep, daze monster, etc), only applies spells via touch, and calls the spells appropriate poison names. "Narcotic poison" (sleep), "muscle relaxing toxin" (daze monster).

In other words, any "cannot be done" is really saying "cannot be done this way", or "cannot be done and still be as good as the minmaxed synthesist", or even "cannot be done in PFS".

Except for the part where he's actually casting spells and has to follow all those rules. Uses per day. Can be dispelled. Doesn't work in anti-magic. Anyone with a spellcraft roll knows they're really spells. Has to chant & wave his arms.


JohnLocke wrote:

Ah, this is late and off-topic, but I can't resist posting it as a little "F U" to the mainstream media and their unquestioning supporters. How the MSM would cover the brutal crackdown in Ferguson if it happened in another country.

And I do love this one, though it probably fits better in the Ferguson thread.


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JohnLocke wrote:
thejeff wrote:
JohnLocke wrote:

I almost admire how consistently this regime lies.

How often can these weaklings cry wolf before the MSM just starts to ignore them? They tried to wipe out ethnic Russians in the eastern reaches of the country and now they're being routed, their unwilling conscripts no longer wishing to fight some proxy war for Washington.

I said it before, and I'll say it again. If Russia invades you, you'll know. Ask Georgia what they got for attacking Russian forces.

Yes, if Russia invades openly, everyone will know.

That of course makes it impossible that Russia will act more covertly.

Yeah, that's been your line for a while now. We've plenty of evidence of American meddling in Ukraine - billions spent on NGO's devoted to overthrowing the government, choosing the new regime (check out Nuland's audio tape for proof), aggressive economic warfare against Russia...

But as for Russian intervention - proof, please. If there was proof of covert military support, wouldn't the U.S. be spraining itself to show it to the world? All we have are Porkyshenko's shrill accusations and the MSM quoting known liars (Rassmussen, et al). But the lack of proof being brought to bear is deafening.

Jeff, I'm guessing you're American. Doesn't this seem like a road your government has trod many times before? Aren't you the slightest bit suspicious of their claims by now?

It's always the pivot to "But America is evil".

Sure. The US meddled in Ukraine. I'm suspicious of damn near everything they do. But I also don't swallow Russia's line without thinking either.

Paratroopers got lost and wandered across the border? Give me a break.

But regardless of who's lying, which is probably everyone, your argument that Russia can't be covertly aiding the separatists because "If Russia invaded you'd know" is simply nonsense.


JohnLocke wrote:

I almost admire how consistently this regime lies.

How often can these weaklings cry wolf before the MSM just starts to ignore them? They tried to wipe out ethnic Russians in the eastern reaches of the country and now they're being routed, their unwilling conscripts no longer wishing to fight some proxy war for Washington.

I said it before, and I'll say it again. If Russia invades you, you'll know. Ask Georgia what they got for attacking Russian forces.

Yes, if Russia invades openly, everyone will know.

That of course makes it impossible that Russia will act more covertly.


Set wrote:
thejeff wrote:

Oh, since you mentioned superhero games, not all concepts work there either. The one I mentioned where the GM went with it and it ruined the game was a superhero game. And partly my fault. The game proposal, as I heard it, was child proteges of 1950's superheroes. I played a demon mageling adopted and being taught by that world's Sorcerer Supreme equivalent. Another player was playing a ninja with some complicated background I don't remember. What the other players heard for the proposal and what the GM intended had much more of an emphasis on the 1950's 4-color, code-approved, straight-forward heroics. And that's what the other characters were. Clashed with our two gritty 90s style near anti-hero characters.

GM absolutely should have shot that character down. Didn't fit the theme.

And yet, that doesn't sound like a 'race / class' problem, so much as a tone or theme issue, one that would not be solved by restricting race / class, but by encouraging role-play appropriate to the tone of the game.

If your mage was played up as a more noir-ish stage magician (secretly using real magic from his dark heritage), I feel like that might have made more of a difference than whether or not your character had supernatural ties (since it's entirely possible to use supernatural stuff along the lines of 'monster comics' or even with a Lovecraftian moody feel).

Just like the 'forbid playing evil characters' or 'don't allow Paladins because PVP' trope, a problem player is going to be a problem player, whether you allow them to play an undead assassin, a Paladin or a furry fox-person. The race-you-hadn't-already-put-in-your-setting seems less about improving a game than picking one thing (unplanned races) and labeling it as 'the problem' with problem players.

I do get that sometimes what make a good painting are the colors that you don't use, and that making a stew with every single ingredient in your kitchen is a great way to create inedible swill, but it's not like your players are...

True that the issue wasn't "Race or class ban", but I don't see that as the root of the issue.

The issue was that the GM had laid out what he wanted from the game and I'd gone with a character that didn't fit, even if I'd done it by misunderstanding. I'm trying to emphasize that it's not "race-you-hadn't-already-put-in-your-setting", but race/class/concept that doesn't fit in the campaign. Might even exist in the setting, but isn't going to work in this particular campaign.

But even in the larger setting sense, it's not that easy to remove races that nobody wants to play. Not unless you're capable of throwing the setting together on the fly after character creation. If you like to have a world with some sense of history then the races are all likely to have their own roles to play in that history. You can't just cut the dwarves out and replace them with gnolls because they wouldn't have done the same things in that history.


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Gaberlunzie wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:

Israel takes more land.

Its somehow connected to the killings of three kids. Because.. reasons.

Yeah, that's what happens.

The palestinians don't try to defend themselves - Israel grabs more and more land.
Then as soon as a tiny little rocket is shot at the occupying force, they're all terrorist and all the women should be killed because they'll be having more terrorist babies and so on and so on.

Israel likes to talk about Hamas using civilians as shields, well, Israel moves thousands of israeli civilians into palestinian lands and then cries terrorism when they're hurt. They're not only human shields, but live bait as well.

Under most circumstances it would be perfectly legal for any government to threaten or even use lethal force against any foreign nationals who come in, evict their citizens from their homes and take the land for themselves.


On the flip side, while not all the missions have been "Maim, Murder, Kill", I can't think of any I've done that have been anything like archaeology.

A couple cleaning up after something the actual archaeologists had dug up and a couple of faction missions that seemed to come close, but none of the actual missions.

Granted I haven't played a lot of scenarios yet, so I may just have hit the atypical ones.


Set wrote:
thejeff wrote:
"What is so awesome about it that it's worth reworking the campaign so that it really does fit?"

What needs to be reworked, 'though? The object of running a game is giving people a chance to share some fun for a couple of hours, not for one frustrated wanna-be author to sit four other people down and tell them a story, and refuse to allow anyone to play any character that I don't pre-approve as existing in this story I'm telling them.

There is no 'setting' outside of the group fun we are having. If the setting is the Forgotten Realms, and somebody wants to play a member of the Sueloise Brotherhood, or an Eberron Changeling, then, bang, so it happens. If we decide to play a vampire game, and one dude wants to play a werewolf, there are balance issues, because vampires are the ugly stepsisters of the World of Darkness, and either they need to be toned up (or at least have their non-daylight operations rule negated, so that the werewolf player doesn't spend half the game waiting for the sun to set and the vampire players don't spend half the game waiting for the werewolf's daytime adventures to end). 'Theme' is not an issue. We aren't a boy band, and everybody doesn't have to dance in lockstep. We're more like the Village People, one dude playing a cop does not preclude someone else playing a cowboy.

Again, I'm spoiled by superhero games, where the players can literally say 'I'm playing the avatar of an Egyptian god I just made up' and I, as GM, do not have to GAF that Egyptian gods may not have existed in the setting I'm using until this very second. It's the work of a second for me to say 'Okay.' It's not like I have to go invent an Egyptian pantheon to go along with that character origin, or rearrange any pre-existing gods I've got going on or anything.

Two separate but related things: I like to have stuff in the setting connect and make sense. If there's a race in the setting, I like to know something about its history and how it fits in with the other races and cultures. This helps me root the characters in the setting and develop plots for them to deal with. The Eberron Changelings would be fairly easy to work in to most settings, since they don't really seem to have much culture of their own. They blend in to others. So they're a mystery with a few references to past historical events. Fine. Eberron's Warforged would require much more effort to find them an origin and a place.

Second and more important: I don't run (or often play) sandboxes. Nor do I just run players through basically unconnected adventures that they get sent on or happen to hear about.
I'm also not a frustrated wanna-be author sitting four other people down and telling them a story, and refusing to allow anyone to play any character that I don't pre-approve as existing in this story I'm telling them.
There's a vast area in between sandbox and railroad, where there's a basic concept and there are bad guys who have plots going on that the PCs will wind up dealing with, but they still have freedom to respond to what the outside world is doing. But sometimes the premise of the game I'm interested in running requires limitations. Obviously if the players aren't interested in the game I'm proposing, then it's not going to happen, but they can't agree to play in it and then bring characters that don't fit. Maybe theme was a bad word choice, but I didn't mean the party has to have a theme, like a boy band, but that the campaign itself has a theme or a concept. If the concept is elven court politics, that limits characters in one way. If the concept is "urban adventures of a gang of thieves", that limits the characters in a different direction. And that's where I'm talking about "What's so awesome about the character?" Don't come up with an excuse why your half-orc barbarian could be at the elven court, sell me on why this half-orc barbarian is going to make this elven court politics game so much better.

If your group is just a bunch of random murder-hobos who met in a bar and off killing things for fun and profit, then none of this matters. Include anything you like. I like my games to be more focused than that. I like that as a player too.

Oh, since you mentioned superhero games, not all concepts work there either. The one I mentioned where the GM went with it and it ruined the game was a superhero game. And partly my fault. The game proposal, as I heard it, was child proteges of 1950's superheroes. I played a demon mageling adopted and being taught by that world's Sorcerer Supreme equivalent. Another player was playing a ninja with some complicated background I don't remember. What the other players heard for the proposal and what the GM intended had much more of an emphasis on the 1950's 4-color, code-approved, straight-forward heroics. And that's what the other characters were. Clashed with our two gritty 90s style near anti-hero characters.
GM absolutely should have shot that character down. Didn't fit the theme.


LazarX wrote:
thejeff wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Zhayne wrote:

It's usually dead simple to have a 'one-off' race in a game world, if you have a multiplanar cosmology. People and things from other dimensions drop in all the time. Plus, there's always the idea of wizard experiments, random mutations, and all that. In Golarion, you even have the potential to be an alien.

Nothing says you have to be a 'race' of more than one.

And some of us consider that trope to be hackneyed, overused, and objectionable on aesthetic grounds, and won't allow it. I'm quite upfront about this sort of thing. If I'm going to invite you to a campaign, I'm going to tell you it's theme and setting first. If you can't get around making a character that fits, I won't strongarm you into playing. It helps however, that I only invite people I know, and this has not been an issue to date.

I agree. If it's just that you hadn't thought to put the race in the world yet, then "I just popped in from some other dimension" can work fine. For example if you were playing wide-open Golarion and someone wanted to use a 3rd Edition race that hadn't been ported over to PF, then it's not a big deal to add.

But if you're planning a campaign where the restriction on theme and setting actually matter, then asking to play something that doesn't fit is a pretty big warning flag that either the player didn't understand the theme and the setting or that he didn't really care and went on to do his own thing. The first can be fixed. The second is a problem.

My response, after making sure it isn't just miscommunication, is to get the player to sell me on it: "This concept doesn't really seem to fit what we talked about. What am I missing? How is this character going to make the campaign better?" Not just, "How can you justify bringing it in", but either "Why does it really fit, even though I can't see it?" or "What is so awesome about it that it's worth reworking the campaign so that it really does fit?"

That in itself is pretty...

I've seen it happen even with long-term groups. Though it's usually been more miscommunication than anything. At least once the GM rolled with it and it pretty much ruined the game. A couple of times the player's argument was good enough to spark something in the GM's head and make the game even better.


LazarX wrote:
Zhayne wrote:

It's usually dead simple to have a 'one-off' race in a game world, if you have a multiplanar cosmology. People and things from other dimensions drop in all the time. Plus, there's always the idea of wizard experiments, random mutations, and all that. In Golarion, you even have the potential to be an alien.

Nothing says you have to be a 'race' of more than one.

And some of us consider that trope to be hackneyed, overused, and objectionable on aesthetic grounds, and won't allow it. I'm quite upfront about this sort of thing. If I'm going to invite you to a campaign, I'm going to tell you it's theme and setting first. If you can't get around making a character that fits, I won't strongarm you into playing. It helps however, that I only invite people I know, and this has not been an issue to date.

I agree. If it's just that you hadn't thought to put the race in the world yet, then "I just popped in from some other dimension" can work fine. For example if you were playing wide-open Golarion and someone wanted to use a 3rd Edition race that hadn't been ported over to PF, then it's not a big deal to add.

But if you're planning a campaign where the restriction on theme and setting actually matter, then asking to play something that doesn't fit is a pretty big warning flag that either the player didn't understand the theme and the setting or that he didn't really care and went on to do his own thing. The first can be fixed. The second is a problem.

My response, after making sure it isn't just miscommunication, is to get the player to sell me on it: "This concept doesn't really seem to fit what we talked about. What am I missing? How is this character going to make the campaign better?" Not just, "How can you justify bringing it in", but either "Why does it really fit, even though I can't see it?" or "What is so awesome about it that it's worth reworking the campaign so that it really does fit?"


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BigNorseWolf wrote:
What you're angry about is someone that was fighting for a good cause, actively tried to keep the casualties to a minimum, and oddly enough was human so he didn't do it perfectly and three people died. As opposed to say, Dick Cheney collecting speakers fees from universities when he deliberately cooked the information so the oil company that was paying him could make oodles of money in iraq and at least 100,000 civilians got killed.

Or John Yoo writing secret legal arguments to justify torture.

Currently a Professor of Law at the University of California at Berkeley.


Ronin_Knight wrote:

sorry for another derail but I wasn't sure where to post this and thought it had some relevance to some aspects of the discussion:

I've been looking in to privilege theory online mainly because the 'check your privilege'/''it's not my job to educate you' response are the only ones I've had when asking those who make reference to it in their campaigns at my University but all I can find is studies and opinions based out of the US and I'm in the UK and from what I could find there seems to be significant enough differences in our cultures to warrant studies based in Britain rather than simply applying the american one and saying 'this applies despite the differences'so can anyone recommend UK or Europe based studies or is the theory based purely on the society of the US and being applied regardless?

I'd say the basic theory, especially when you apply intersectionality to consider the different types of privilege (or the opposite) that affect each case. Members of the dominant race/ethnicity/culture in any given place have advantages over others that they are generally unaware of, unless they've educated themselves on the topic in one way or another.

What groups get those privileges and exactly what the privileges are various from country to country and even in different regions within the country, but the basic concept applies.


Kthulhu wrote:
Fun fact: Charlize Theron is an African-American.

That's true, in a way. And I'd laugh at anyone who claimed that she was black because of it. Or a person of color.


Matthew Morris wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
thejeff wrote:
]My stance is and remains that he claims incorrectly to be a Person of Color to mock and dismiss racial discrimination.
Do we REALLY want to go down the road of saying "He isn't [color] enough to be a REAL [race]?

No. And I'm not.

He's Portuguese-American. He's European-American. He's white.

It's not about being not [color] enough to be a REAL [race].

This doesn't mean he wasn't poor. This doesn't mean he didn't face discrimination, 1st and 2nd generation immigrants often face discrimination where ever they come from. I lived until recently in a town with a high Polish immigrant population. They had a rough time of it in many ways. But that doesn't make them people of color.

So you're saying Theresa Heinz-Kerry is African American?

Cute.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:

If we didn't say "Social Justice Warrior", we'd just call them "whiner" or "jerk" or "bully".

I didn't really want to have to spend an hour on this (not least because I hate giving tor.com ad revenue), but if you insist:

George wrote:
By far, the most visible minorities at GenCon were the hired convention hall facilities staff who were setting up, serving, and cleaning up garbage for the predominantly white convention-goers. It was a surreal experience and it felt like I had stepped into an ugly part of a bygone era, one in which whites were waited upon by minority servants.
Stupid statement speaks for itself.

I've said it before and I certainly don't blame Gencon for it, but I've been in places that had this dynamic and it's freaky when you realize it. And I'm a white guy. I really can't imagine what it's like if you match the servants, not the guests.

Kobold Cleaver wrote:


George wrote:
Gaming has a race problem. For all its creativity and imagination, for all its acceptance of those who find it hard to be themselves in mainstream society, gaming has made little room for people of color.

To be more precise, America has a race problem, and gaming happens to exist in America. Gaming is an extraordinarily inclusive hobby—it's just expensive.

George wrote:
The broad acceptance that white people enjoy is the unspoken—but clearly visible—rule of our society, reinforced through a thousand structures and symbols. It pervades everything around us, reminding everyone that white people are the center of the story, no matter what story is being told. As a kid who desperately wanted to belong and fit in, white was the color of god.

While it is true that media often used to only center on white people, there are a ton of movies, TV shows and novels with non-white leads nowadays. The number grows steadily, too.

His point applies to his childhood, not the modern day. That complaint also applies to his complaints about non-inclusive tabletop games—Pathfinder and D&D both disprove his point with tons of minority characters.

Kobold Cleaver wrote:


George wrote:
I don’t think there are official surveys and statistics on the gaming subculture, but perhaps this study on the top 100 domestic grossing films in science-fiction and fantasy is an indication of similar trends in gaming: There are only eight protagonists of color in the top 100 science-fiction and fantasy films. Six are played by Will Smith and one is a cartoon character (Aladdin). None of these protagonists are women of color.

Gee, maybe if he looked at more recent movies, he'd see a change (funny enough, Lion King is pretty damn centered on Africa, though I'll concede the characters don't exactly look black).

Again, he's not really going for an up-to-date view. I think that's really harmful. Racism is a thing nowadays, too. Focusing on the problems of way-back-when reinforces the people who claim racism to be dead and in fact hurts the case of actual social justice.

Will Smith isn't exactly ancient history.

Quote:
Her other complaint was about someone selling nazi paraphernalia at a booth. This was explicitly against the rules (no 20th century costumes) and I heard it got shut down for that and other reasons, so, yeah. It's a damn cosplay. Not a very okay cosplay, no, but seriously? We have Irregular Webcomic featuring a group of nazis as joke villains. We have Springtime for Hitler. I know joking about nazis still upsets people, but...are we really gonna call GenCon racist over this?

I don't know if that booth was eventually shut down or not, but according to the linked story, GenCon officials basically ignored complaints and did nothing about it.

More generally, I agree with you. The racist problem is a more generally American one and less a specifically GenCon or gaming one. That said, in the sense in which George is using the term racist, the GenCon organization is racist. As are most of us. Well-meaning, as he acknowledges, but clueless.
In the sense in which Correia uses the term, they are not. One of the problems with Correia's piece is that he dismisses Georges definition and proceeds to analyze the post using his own definition. Another is his casual mocking of George's description of his own experiences.


Darche Schneider wrote:

There is a couple of things I learned..

Gotta bunch of extra numbers? Can you subtract them to make 0?

Because 0 x anything = 0. So once you can consistently get a preset grouping of numbers, you can almost always throw out the rest with 0.

1x1 = 1. 1xX=X. Which is a few more ways you can math out a few numbers as well.

That's even easier and I don't know why I didn't think of it. And that means it really does get much easier as you get more dice.

So 15d6 ⇒ (4, 6, 3, 1, 1, 1, 5, 3, 6, 4, 1, 6, 5, 4, 3) = 53

101 = (5*5*4 + 1) + 1-1*( 6 + 3 + 3 + 6 + 4 + 1 + 6 + 4 + 3)

103 = (5*5*4 + 3) + 1-1*( 6 + 1 + 3 + 6 + 4 + 1 + 6 + 4 + 3)

107 = (5*5*4 + 6 + 1) + 1-1*( 3 + 3 + 6 + 4 + 1 + 6 + 4 + 3)


Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Of course not. That's why people should stop refuting Larry's points with accusations of racism and "privilege".

The bare fact is that the guy who wrote the original article comes across as clueless, self-righteous, melodramatic, and itchin' for a fight. Correia states he has frequently responded to tor.com's articles, so while he comes across as quite confrontational, I got the sense he was more irritated because he was sick of having to deal with this particular website.

If you don't want people to try calling tor.com or its supporters racist, stop calling Correia and his supporters racist, or privileged, or gendernormative, or whatever the hay we're calling people now. Someone can have a different opinion from a supporter of social justice and be just that—someone with a differing point of view.

Well, it's not like he has to deal with this particular website. He could, for example, ignore it.

It's almost like he's some kind of anti-Social Justice Warrior, "constantly perched like a falcon, ready to swoop in to right wrongs."

And the first accusations of racism in this thread were thrown at George, not Correia.


Irontruth wrote:

My favorite morsel of information from this whole thing is in the story about the guy who was falsely arrested, beaten in his cell and charged with destruction of property.

He sued the police department for what they did to him. On the stand, the officer who wrote up the report had the following exchange:

Quote:

“After Mr. Davis was detained, did you have any blood on you?” asked Davis’ lawyer, James Schottel.

“No, sir,” Beaird replied.

Schottel showed Beaird a copy of the “property damage” complaint.

“Is that your signature as complainant?” the lawyer asked.

“It is, sir,” the cop said.

“And what do you allege that Mr. Davis did unlawfully in this one?” the lawyer asked.

“Transferred blood to my uniform while Davis was resisting,” the cop said.

“And didn’t I ask you earlier in this deposition if Mr. Davis got blood on your uniform?”

“You did, sir.”

“And didn’t you respond no?”

“Correct. I did.”

Afterwards, the St Louis prosecutor in charge of the 4 counts of damage of government property only dropped 2 of the charges. He is also currently unopposed in his re-election campaign this November.

Don't forget that one of the officers involved in that is one the city council.


AxiomOfAnarchy wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Without even trying to dig into the math, that analysis is fundamentally flawed because you're not looking to exhaust the search space. There is not only one solution, nor do you have to find all the solutions. You only need one.

One out of X, where X is a ridiculously large search space. The computational complexity of the direct brute force approach is O(n!); that is precisely what my post demonstrated.

thejeff wrote:
Others have posted fairly simple and elegant approaches to finding those solutions. It's not really difficult, but will definitely slow down play.
Links? The only "solution" I've come across fairly consistently produces incorrect results.

But it's not one out of X. The number of combinations is ridiculously large, but so is the number of combinations that solve the problem. And you only need one of those combinations.

I'm not sure what problem your math is actually trying to solve. What you don't allow for is how many working combination there are. That essentially divides your search space, since you only need to brute force until you find the first one.

In reality, you don't need to brute force of course. I'm not sure how I'd write a program to solve it, but it really is a few minutes of work at worst to actually solve any given example.

As suggested earlier in thread: multiply a couple dice together until you're near one of the targets. Add or subtract to reach the target. Pair the rest of the dice together so they come to 1 or 0, then multiply and add.

Let's say you roll 15 dice trying to cast an effective level 9 spell. The prime numbers are 101, 103, 107.

15d6 ⇒ (4, 5, 2, 3, 3, 5, 1, 4, 2, 1, 5, 4, 5, 3, 3) = 50

Edit: Solved for the wrong thing
So 5*4*5 = 100, leaving me with 2,3,3,1,4,2,1,5,4,5,3,3, then you just subtract or divide out pairs.
(5*4*5 +2-2+3-3)*1*4/4+5-5+3-3+1 = 101

That took about 4 minutes, but it's actually easier to match dice together than to keep track while typing it out. (And there's a cat demanding attention.)

I don't know about formal mathematical solutions to the problem, but it's pretty trivial to do by hand.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Vod Canockers wrote:
But still my point was to commit crimes in the name of a movement, so Universities will hire you later.

I still think you've got causation and correlation screwed up here.

Universities may hire you despite past criminal movement activity. You have not demonstrated that "committing crimes in the name of a movement" is actually a useful way to get universities to hire you.

Especially since one of your two examples was dismissed because of it.


Abraham spalding wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:

You cannot give consent while drunk.

Consent must be obtained or the act is forced.

Drunk has a legal definition. Consent has a legal definition, and you cannot consent while drunk. If you do not have consent then the act is not willing.

This is a basic point everyone needs to get into their heads.

Does this mean that you didn't do something that put you in the situation? No. But that doesn't excuse the other persons behavior either.

If I leave my house open and you take something from it you have still robbed me. I made it easy but you are still a robber.

Consequently if I get drunk I cannot give consent. If I do not give consent and you do it anyways you are a rapist.

My idiocy does not give you the right to my possessions.

Define drunk.

1) Had any alchohol.
2) Past the legal limit for driving.
3) Beyond that, but still walking and talking coherently, but judgement is probably impaired.
4) Incapacitated. Passed out or at least not capable of coherent conversation or control of your body.

As I understand it, 4 is the only one where you're likely to get a conviction. 1-3 would criminalize an awful lot of sex. And 3 is basically what we're talking about with charm magic.

1. Is questionable

2. Is drunk -> No Consent ∴ Rape
3. Is drunk -> No Consent ∴ Rape
4. Is drunk -> No Consent ∴ Rape

Also we very much are not talking about number 3 with charm magic from the get go:

Charm magic is not by consent -- [b]by very definition it is forcibly changing your opinion[b]. This means your judgement is impaired. You are under the effects of a mind altering substance (in this case a magic spell), which means you cannot (in regards to the person you are charmed towards) give informed consent, because they have already violated you.

Right, your judgment is impaired, just like with a sufficient amount of alcohol. The difference I wasn't thinking of when I wrote that was that unlike the alcohol the charm itself was almost certainly applied without consent.

But in the real world, you're serious?
You do realize that the legal limit for driving is low enough that it's hard to even tell that someone is past it?
That people sometimes actually want to have sex even when they've been drinking?
That you're essentially criminalizing the entire bar scene? And even anyone who goes out with their partner and has a couple drinks with dinner or at a party then goes home to bed?
That you're accusing me of rape? And all of my partners. Multiple times, though almost always in the context of a long term relationship where alcohol wasn't a significant factor in whether we had sex at a particular time. The only exception, she was the initiator, though we were both drunk, so it was probably mutual rape.
I don't think I'm an exception here.

And you think this is the law already? Have sex with someone who's had a couple of drinks and you're busted for rape. Both of you, if you'd been drinking too.

BTW, that's actually a great hedge against rape prosecutions: If the rapist has been drinking too, he can charge the victim.


Abraham spalding wrote:

You cannot give consent while drunk.

Consent must be obtained or the act is forced.

Drunk has a legal definition. Consent has a legal definition, and you cannot consent while drunk. If you do not have consent then the act is not willing.

This is a basic point everyone needs to get into their heads.

Does this mean that you didn't do something that put you in the situation? No. But that doesn't excuse the other persons behavior either.

If I leave my house open and you take something from it you have still robbed me. I made it easy but you are still a robber.

Consequently if I get drunk I cannot give consent. If I do not give consent and you do it anyways you are a rapist.

My idiocy does not give you the right to my possessions.

Define drunk.

1) Had any alchohol.
2) Past the legal limit for driving.
3) Beyond that, but still walking and talking coherently, but judgement is probably impaired.
4) Incapacitated. Passed out or at least not capable of coherent conversation or control of your body.

As I understand it, 4 is the only one where you're likely to get a conviction. 1-3 would criminalize an awful lot of sex. And 3 is basically what we're talking about with charm magic.


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Or more accurately, "white".
Or, more accurately still, "insufficiently minority". Which is, y'know, wrong.

Yes, just like I am "insufficiently not-white", or as I usually put it, "white".

And nothing on him actually claiming any discrimination?


Without even trying to dig into the math, that analysis is fundamentally flawed because you're not looking to exhaust the search space. There is not only one solution, nor do you have to find all the solutions. You only need one.

Others have posted fairly simple and elegant approaches to finding those solutions. It's not really difficult, but will definitely slow down play.


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
Horse. S*++.

*Ponyfeathers

EntrerisShadow wrote:

It's not a No True Scotsman. If his family had immigrated from a Latin American country and had a background there, then I would have no problem saying he's Latino. At some point there's a difference between NTS and just ignoring facts.

Actually, I'm more protesting about the people claiming Correia hasn't dealt with discrimination and treating this article as proof of that. They then point to things like "insufficiently non-white".

Or more accurately, "white".

But leaving that aside, where does Correia claim he's dealt with discrimination. He says

Quote:

I get that. I truly do. I grew up in a Portuguese culture in a really poor dairy farming town, where the men were manly men, problems were solved with fists and the problems that couldn’t be solved with fists were dulled with beer, reading books was a waste of time that could better be spent milking cows, and D&D was for worshipping the devil.

In my school, half of us could speak English. Half of those could read.

So, he grew up poor, but I don't see any actual claims of discrimination.

I didn't reread the whole thing, so I might have missed something.


Auxmaulous wrote:

Maybe you should just stop deciding "other" peoples experiences - that's the part you should probably "give up" on. That or validating a persons discrimination based on the fact that they are a person of color (or not).

If a person of Irish decent gets beat down because he was Irish (race, heritage, religion) does him not being a "person of color" give him a faster healing rate? Did he experience "less" racism?

You can say whatever you want about yourself and your own personal experiences - people of other races do not need you to "white knight" for them and their experiences (coupled with guesses). They don't need you to speak for them.

No. The Irish guy doesn't heal faster nor does his beat down become less discrimination.

He also doesn't become a person of color because he got beaten up.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
]
Haskol wrote:


Using evil methods to accomplish non-evil ends is still evil.
Is mind control more Evil than stabbing someone repeatedly in the face? Probably not usually (though it can be if you mind control them to do certain things). That being the case, it seems a reasonable thing to use in combat against people trying to kill you.

Or to prevent combat when the alternative is killing them.


BigDTBone wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Uh Oh! Not Again! Unarmed Black Woman Shot to Death by Police in Georgia!
How is it possible to run a news site and NOT time/date stamp your articles?
When it's not a news site?
Quote:
NewsBuzzDaily.com is a combination of real shocking news and satire news. Please note that articles written on this site are for entertainment and satirical purposes only.

Sorry, Comrade Anklebiter, this one doesn't seem real.

The handcuffed guy shooting himself in the chest after having been searched for weapons is real though.
As I said earlier, it just goes to show you can't take any chances with those black thugs.


Auxmaulous wrote:
I guess now we have appointed posters to decide who's white or a person of color,and based off of that who can or cannot experience racism (even if they have experienced racism).

Words actually mean things. They have definitions.

I give up.

Can I declare myself a person of color too? Maybe I'll be black and pontificate about how I've never been bothered by racism even though I've decided to be black.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Just another day in Post-Racial America.


Kthulhu wrote:
thejeff wrote:
]My stance is and remains that he claims incorrectly to be a Person of Color to mock and dismiss racial discrimination.
Do we REALLY want to go down the road of saying "He isn't [color] enough to be a REAL [race]?

No. And I'm not.

He's Portuguese-American. He's European-American. He's white.

It's not about being not [color] enough to be a REAL [race].

This doesn't mean he wasn't poor. This doesn't mean he didn't face discrimination, 1st and 2nd generation immigrants often face discrimination where ever they come from. I lived until recently in a town with a high Polish immigrant population. They had a rough time of it in many ways. But that doesn't make them people of color.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

By which you actually mean, be in an organization that commits crimes, but either don't actually commit them yourself or at least don't get charged and convicted for committing them, or for only minor crimes, and it's still possible to get a University job, assuming you also have the credentials.

It's not exactly a career path I'd suggest.


Caineach wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Yeah, it is pretty crazy there are people arguing that Larry is bigoted for saying that.

That's because some of us don't think that's all he's saying. Though it's kind of hard to get through all the stuff about there being only 2 biological sexes (which pretty much misses the entire point, even though it's true. Because gender<>sex)

He's writing an attack piece on a post which absolutely doesn't say "Write lousy token characters" and the only thing he has to say is "Don't write lousy token characters"?

To steal from Jim Hine's take on it, because he's a professional and says it better than I can.

Quote:

I … actually, I pretty much agree with him here. People read for story, not for checklists or quotas or lectures. I see nothing in MacFarlane’s article to suggest she believes any differently. Calling for authors to be more thoughtful about their craft doesn’t mean you’re telling authors to abandon story for MESSAGE.

But you know, readers also tend to enjoy stories where they can find characters like themselves. Which is easy if you’re a straight white dude, and gets progressively more difficult the further you stray from that default. Maybe if we want to write enjoyable stories, we should try looking beyond the same old default that’s been done again and again throughout the history of the genre.

Yeah, I read that failed attempt at a fisking already. It agrees with every important point of Correia, but still somehow tries to say he is wrong. Not to mention it makes assertions about Correia's stance and writing that are incorrect.

That last may well be true, but for the first, yeah if you reduce Correia's screed to "Don't write tokens" or "Story is more important than message", then all three of them agree.

Which makes Correia's takedown of MacFarlane's post pretty pathetic already.

Except I do think he's saying more than that. And I think it ties into his mocking of George.


Kobold Cleaver wrote:

...Gender is neither greater than nor equal to sex?

Gender and sex are moirails?

Kobold Cleaver doesn't have much to say and never saw "<>" used to mean "=/="?

Hey, look, a fish! <><

Sorry. Programming usage. "!=" would be my other go to.

And it would be "Less than or Greater than", with equal remaining as the untrue option. :)


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Yeah, it is pretty crazy there are people arguing that Larry is bigoted for saying that.

That's because some of us don't think that's all he's saying. Though it's kind of hard to get through all the stuff about there being only 2 biological sexes (which pretty much misses the entire point, even though it's true. Because gender<>sex)

He's writing an attack piece on a post which absolutely doesn't say "Write lousy token characters" and the only thing he has to say is "Don't write lousy token characters"?

To steal from Jim Hine's take on it, because he's a professional and says it better than I can.

Quote:

I … actually, I pretty much agree with him here. People read for story, not for checklists or quotas or lectures. I see nothing in MacFarlane’s article to suggest she believes any differently. Calling for authors to be more thoughtful about their craft doesn’t mean you’re telling authors to abandon story for MESSAGE.

But you know, readers also tend to enjoy stories where they can find characters like themselves. Which is easy if you’re a straight white dude, and gets progressively more difficult the further you stray from that default. Maybe if we want to write enjoyable stories, we should try looking beyond the same old default that’s been done again and again throughout the history of the genre.


JurgenV wrote:
Caineach wrote:
JurgenV wrote:
Caineach wrote:
Scott Betts wrote:
HerosBackpack wrote:

I look around me and see at least 5 genders, right here in the present world. That's my world, the one I live in. I'd like to have the same chance of seeing all of those genders just having a great story to tell. Without it being hyperfocused on the gender. "This is Danny, he's bashing orcs with a greatsword." "This is Alex, zie's shooting the orcs with a longbow." "This is Qatz, they're guarding Danny's back as he fights."

Even Paizo, inclusive as they are, doesn't really have much that represents me. I like that they are inclusive, but I'd like to see NPCs and characters like me too....

At a certain point, one has to accept that certain aspects of one's own character put them in so small (and so poorly understood) a niche that representing those certain traits or characteristics in something like a Pathfinder iconic simply isn't feasible. I'm all for Paizo introducing characters that make it clear that there is no stigma attached to one's sexual orientation, but the sexuality/gender/identity spectra are so diverse and so (to be frank) poorly organized in terms of vocabulary and consistency (try getting a room full of genderqueer people to agree on a set of neutral-gendered pronouns like zie/zir) that going for even finer granularity isn't something I see happening in the near future.
Did you know there is a transgendered iconic? She is awesome.
Well written and in no way a token character.
And that is why Paizo can get away with including characters like her. They treat her well, don't harp on the subject of her being transgender, and they focus on making her awesome. It takes skill to make characters like her.
They make it PART of the character, not in place OF the character. It makes sense to who the character is not something tacked on.

I can't believe the argument has devolved to "Larry said writers shouldn't write lousy characters. Unlike that guy he was responding to who totally said they should."


JurgenV wrote:
Caineach wrote:
Did you know there is a transgendered iconic? She is awesome.
Well written and in no way a token character.

No one has said anyone should be writing token characters. At least if you define token as badly written.

OTOH, Paizo definitely wanted to have a trans iconic, so in some sense she could be considered a token.

And yes, she is awesome.


Caineach wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Caineach wrote:
This is pretty much the exact point Correia was trying to make. In fact he even uses the "everything is for a reason". The entire post was to basically tell aspiring authors not to follow the advice just because, because then you will be shooting yourself in the foot trying to tie something in that doesn't really fit. Write the story that you want and add the details where needed, but not because of any particular social justice cause.

I'm amused by this in the context of the official reason for this thread: Larry Correia praising Pathfinder for diversity.

The official stated reason for that diversity is exactly what he complains about: making sure they had representative characters of different genders and different races and even now LGBTQ characters.

Except Paizo didn't write the characters to just fill in a box. They made them awesome. And most new authors (Correia's audience for the gender post) wont be able to take something they aren't familiar with and make it awesome. It will come across as either bland or preachy, and no one will read it. And if no one reads your stuff, you will never make money.

Luckily no one actually advises new authors to add diversity just to fill the box. Including the post he responded to about going beyond two genders. Correia added that in all himself.

And that exact criticism has been aimed at Paizo with nearly every appearance of new diversity, particularly the recent trans characters.


Caineach wrote:
This is pretty much the exact point Correia was trying to make. In fact he even uses the "everything is for a reason". The entire post was to basically tell aspiring authors not to follow the advice just because, because then you will be shooting yourself in the foot trying to tie something in that doesn't really fit. Write the story that you want and add the details where needed, but not because of any particular social justice cause.

I'm amused by this in the context of the official reason for this thread: Larry Correia praising Pathfinder for diversity.

The official stated reason for that diversity is exactly what he complains about: making sure they had representative characters of different genders and different races and even now LGBTQ characters.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
HerosBackpack wrote:
Larry can afford to not see things because he doesn't have to see them. Unfortunately, I can't afford to do that.

What doesn't he see? He acknowledges the disparity in numbers between white people and people of minorities. He prefers to chalk it up to economic inequalities as opposed to active racism on the con staff's part...and that seems a reasonable argument.

Maybe he's even wrong...but George presents no proof of his (rather vicious) accusations of the GenCon organizers, and that's usually the job of the person accusing someone of malfeasance, y'know?

Vicious accusations like "Usually, they are well-meaning people who do not realize how their roles and decisions impact the larger gaming community and its lack of diversity."

Damn, that's some serious active racism right there. I still think most of this kerfluffle is about Correia substituting his definition of racism for George's and then being offended when George uses the word.

You can not accept that definition, but you can't pretend George means something else when he uses the term.

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