Trans Paizo employee fired for complaining about trans Iconic?


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Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I don't understand why people use Social Justice Warrior as a perjorative.

If you stand against someone who stands for social justice then what do you stand for? Hint: Nothing nice.

In any case I'm more of a Social Justice Alchemist.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Social justice aristocrat here. Just for the irony.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Time for the only way to "win" this discussion: the fake self-Godwin.

(Disclaimer: I don't mean the following bit AT ALL)

I know it must be true because I read it on the internet somewhere, and anyone who tries to deny it is violating my civil rights worse than anything the Nazis ever did!

(Disclaimer 2: I DO mean this bit.)

An awesome character write up. I don't give a flying (insert vulgarity of choice) if it was written by a man, woman, dog, snake, care-bear, brony, LGBTQ, or whatever (though I might object somewhat if it was the KKK).

Some people really need to get over themselves, and realise that what makes you happy in yourself is what matters, and that you shouldn't ever try to impose your personal beliefs on others.

I'm from the UK, what I tend to refer to as "white middle England". The overwhelming majority of people I know are white and straight. I also know that I have hang-ups from my youth - a barrage of "gay is bad" and "ethnic minorities are not us" that, thankfully, never came from my family, but from my peers. Well, I like to think that I'm smart enough, mature enough, and just damn human enough not to reject someone just because they're "different".

I might not be 100% comfortable outside my white middle England, but I will by GOD defend anybody's right to be the person they are and want to be (caveat regarding criminal activity goes here). I want my son to grow up to be the person he wants to be. And I really don't want his sexuality or gender identity to be something he even notices.

Sometimes the internet sucks. Sometimes it's awesome. Hopefully, with a little more self- and outward-honesty, the awesome will prevail.


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Crystal Frasier wrote:
The only people who've expressed any "concern" that she exists just to pander to the transgender community have been a teensy, tiny minority of straight males who show the same kind of "concern" that feminism hurts women and racial justice holds all black people back, and who bemoan the blight of "fake geek girls" ruin the community. Not people whose opinion on the subject seems especially informed.

*Puts on helmet*

I apologize in advance for how long this got.:

While I fully agree with the current context of Crystal's statement, I'm somewhat leery of the broad brush often deployed by those involved with the social justice movement (and also every movement ever, so it's not like it's just social justice's problem) to paint everyone who has problems with those involved in the movement as confused, bigoted, and/or MRA nutjobs.

I honestly kind of snickered the first time I read the post, but then I paused and said, "Hey, what kind of precedent am I setting here? Is this a slippery slope or something?"

Frankly, this s%#! is confusing and I should stop trying to get involved in it. I've considerably warmed to the "radicals" of the social justice movement since my first encounter—while I still don't much care for terms like "differently-abled", and still get a kick out of non-PC jokes, I'm a lot more on-guard about, say, how such jokes are deployed.

I've always personally been a bit bothered at how little representation transgenders get, though I can see why from a practical standpoint of "MCs need to be hot and a lot of people are still a bit turned off by transgenders because they haven't been exposed to them much because they aren't in media much because g++@$&mit".

I was thrilled at the transgender iconic, and think it's a very interesting character. Transgenderness is worked seamlessly into the iconic's identity (though in a "her problems with family and stuff are somewhat relatable to the problems many transgenders face in our world" way, not the "hamfisted metaphor" way so many deploy).

That said, I think claims that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one are...true. No s+%+. Iconics are meant to be diverse, so surprise, surprise, they're still working on broadening the diversity.

Again, I don't have a problem with Crystal's broad brush in this case. People who are "concerned" about this are being lame and also dumb and loserish. My feelings on this are very complicated, but I have a knee-jerk response to "catch-all statements" being deployed against people who argue with social justice proponents. This is because it is a tool often used to bully and simplify complex issues. We all realize there is such a thing as too much political correctness, right? I'm not being sarcastic with that "right". Sometimes I take things for granted when I shouldn't and it leads to people getting rightly pissed at me. People who argue with social justice proponents can disagree on where that line is drawn, and that's such a complicated issue that many try to boil it down to a simplistic narrative of enlightened vs. bigoted/stupid.

I kind of just needed to go over this in my head. It's something I've sort of wanted to talk out for a while. I have seen the "broad brush" deployed elsewhere on these forums, and it kind of sickens me how social justice can be twisted into an excuse to bully. Sometimes people decide to just assume they understand everything about a guy from one post he made about race issues. Because it's easier than trying to learn more.

Anyways, I'm done now. Feel free to carry on, but I welcome responses. I'm not interested in going over particular issues, because that's so charged not even I'm dumb enough to get into it. But if people would like to discuss how the discussion is best held, I'm open.

EDIT: Also,

Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Sometimes people decide to just assume they understand everything about a guy from one post he made about race issues. Because it's easier than trying to learn more.

Please, if you are offended by something I said here, try to learn more. Perhaps you misunderstood. At the very least, try to help me learn more. I know attacks are fun, but so is being nice and considerate to fellow human beings. :)

Liberty's Edge Contributor

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DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
I don't understand why people use Social Justice Warrior as a perjorative.

They're just angry they can never find any social justice healers. Everyone wants to tanks these days.


Crystal Frasier wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
I don't understand why people use Social Justice Warrior as a perjorative.
They're just angry they can never find any social justice healers. Everyone wants to tanks these days.

They are just upset about how vocal the social justice warriors are on discussion forums, because everyone knows all the real power is in the social justice casters. Duh :-p


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I think a lot of people who use Social Justice Warrior with a sneer aren't bad people. They're simply people who live a relatively normal life and don't understand that for other people, it isn't as comfortable. Why would coloured people want to complain? They never see any of this bigotry they talk of. It can't, therefore, be that bad.

It's one of the reasons they don't like changes to games. Games are fun. Why change them just because a few people are unhappy? They don't see what the fuss is about if a few more games are geared for guys than girls...

They simply don't get that because of how ridiculously all pervasive this stuff is, and how much of media in general is screwed to white, male, cis and straight that what they see isn't normal. Because you can find a hero for just about any kind of straight, white dude they don't get how important it is for gay, or tans, or bi, or people of colour to have one too. You don't realize how lucky you are to have something like that.

And because most of these folks, who think of themselves as fine with women, OK with gays and a friend to all minorities think it's all fine, they feel uncomfortable finding out it's not all sunshine and roses for those people. When someone tells you that a show you love, such as a popular sci fi western that was criminally cancelled early has issues with, say, the fact it makes a big deal oof two cultures merging but only has the characters from one of those cultures being paupers while all the rich, wealthy people on the same planet are white you want to defend it. That can't be right, they think to themselves, I never saw any problem...

It's a problem I still have a issue with. I feel a lot of guilt over things I like, because they aren't good enough. I still struggle to accept I can be critical of something, often very heavily, and still enjoy it. In fact, it's better to be critical of what you love - how else can you help it improve if you can't see the flaws?

I think a lot of people are fighting against these changes simply because if it's true then a lot of the things they love, a lot of the things they've grown up with, are flawed in a way that goes against what they believe in. Games can't be unsurpotive of gays and women because they love games but are also supportive of gay and women's rights. It doesn't make sense to like something opposed to there own philosophy.

In my own experience, a lot of people don't get why a decent portrayal of bisexual people is important to me. The number of people who've told me, 'Well, it must have just been a phase since you married a woman' and don't understand that, no, I just happened to find a women I wanted to marry, it didn't make me straight is...frustrating. And seeing bi people portrayed as sexual monsters, or seeing any person who tries the opposite of there previously stated reference instantly be declare either gay or straight, with the idea of bi completely forgotten or tossed aside, frustrates me.

In games, that pretty much means people go, 'Well, you can choose to be bi in Mass Effect/Dragon Age/this RPG, isn't that enough?' No, it isn't. It's nice to be able to make the choice, but it would also be nice to see a character like me who isn't created by my choices - a character that everyone would have to see that way.

So I struggle to imagine how hard it is for other groups who don't usually pass as a cis, white, straight gamer. I just hope more people go through the same realizations I did - that as much as I love games, people are so much more important. Every person, everywhere, is so much more important. And I will fight until each and everyone of them can enjoy games as much as I do.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
That said, I think claims that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one are...true. No s&@*. Iconics are meant to be diverse, so surprise, surprise, they're still working on broadening the diversity.

Not to counter anything you said, but just to point out something that's easy to miss.

You're absolutely right that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one. There are also only cis iconics solely because Paizo wanted them. The same with straight ones and gay ones and bi ones and white ones and black ones and male and female and every other iconic there is. They're that way solely because Paizo wanted them that way. There is no default they would have been if someone at Paizo didn't make a choice.


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thejeff wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
That said, I think claims that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one are...true. No s&@*. Iconics are meant to be diverse, so surprise, surprise, they're still working on broadening the diversity.

Not to counter anything you said, but just to point out something that's easy to miss.

You're absolutely right that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one. There are also only cis iconics solely because Paizo wanted them. The same with straight ones and gay ones and bi ones and white ones and black ones and male and female and every other iconic there is. They're that way solely because Paizo wanted them that way. There is no default they would have been if someone at Paizo didn't make a choice.

Well, I suppose they could have stayed true to the Dice Gods and let the random roll chart decide. 'OK, so the iconic fighter is a gay dark skinned Kobold. And the wizard is a trans ogre. This...may take some illustrating.'


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Flamboyant/camp gay kobold? I expect lots and lots of feathers...


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thejeff wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
That said, I think claims that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one are...true. No s&@*. Iconics are meant to be diverse, so surprise, surprise, they're still working on broadening the diversity.

Not to counter anything you said, but just to point out something that's easy to miss.

You're absolutely right that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one. There are also only cis iconics solely because Paizo wanted them. The same with straight ones and gay ones and bi ones and white ones and black ones and male and female and every other iconic there is. They're that way solely because Paizo wanted them that way. There is no default they would have been if someone at Paizo didn't make a choice.

Agreed.

JonGarett, I use the term disparagingly, or "with a sneer" (or an eyeroll). I've seen bigotry and contempt for homosexuals. I agree that bigotry is a serious problem and that it is still running rampant in our country. I just think that "Social Justice Warriors" are a+&%$~~s. And since you're casting those of us who believe that with the "broad brush" I talked about earlier, I don't think you quite understand why we call them Social Justice Warriors to begin with.

Being a Social Justice Warrior is not good. It is the byproduct of the social justice movement, not the intended result. A Social Justice Warrior is a thug who completely misunderstands the purpose of the movement overall.

Obviously, not everyone who supports social justice deserves the label of SJW. Some people are just trying to make a difference. Kinda like not everyone who argues with social justice proponents (not social justice itself, keep in mind) deserves the label of "part of the problem". Funny how that works out, huh?

Kinda like how somebody who doesn't like a particular sect of Christianity doesn't automatically hate Jesus. I support social justice. I just think there are a lot of jerks amid the cause, and I don't like being called an ignoramus for calling those jerks out—or for trying to encourage those who sincerely follow the movement to consider alternate points of view on where to draw the line.


James Sutter wrote:

That said, I *do* challenge anyone to read Crystal's awesome write-up of Shardra and call it hamfisted. She did a rad job.

I thought it was pretty poorly done, personally. Not that this is even the place to discuss such. However I was also afraid to post in the thread about it. Didn't want to get moderated into oblivion or be attacked for being against the popular opinion. But really, more to the point, no one should ever lose their job due to any of their personal... I don't even know the proper term for it. Proclivities?


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JonGarrett wrote:
When someone tells you that a show you love, such as a popular sci fi western that was criminally cancelled early has issues with, say, the fact it makes a big deal oof two cultures merging but only has the characters from one of those cultures being paupers while all the rich, wealthy people on the same planet are white you want to defend it. That can't be right, they think to themselves, I never saw any problem...

Personally, I think Joss was more being thoughtless than racist there. They originally intended to cast an Asian to play Kaylee, but decided to go for someone else instead. I think he just decided, "Hell, I like the cast we've got, who's gonna notice?" I don't think race ever even entered into his head.

But neither here nor there.

Also, I'm pretty sure Niska was Russian. There were rich Asians, just no Asian MCs.


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JonGarrett wrote:

I think a lot of people who use Social Justice Warrior with a sneer aren't bad people. They're simply people who live a relatively normal life and don't understand that for other people, it isn't as comfortable. Why would coloured people want to complain? They never see any of this bigotry they talk of. It can't, therefore, be that bad.

It's one of the reasons they don't like changes to games. Games are fun. Why change them just because a few people are unhappy? They don't see what the fuss is about if a few more games are geared for guys than girls...

They simply don't get that because of how ridiculously all pervasive this stuff is, and how much of media in general is screwed to white, male, cis and straight that what they see isn't normal. Because you can find a hero for just about any kind of straight, white dude they don't get how important it is for gay, or tans, or bi, or people of colour to have one too. You don't realize how lucky you are to have something like that.

And because most of these folks, who think of themselves as fine with women, OK with gays and a friend to all minorities think it's all fine, they feel uncomfortable finding out it's not all sunshine and roses for those people. When someone tells you that a show you love, such as a popular sci fi western that was criminally cancelled early has issues with, say, the fact it makes a big deal oof two cultures merging but only has the characters from one of those cultures being paupers while all the rich, wealthy people on the same planet are white you want to defend it. That can't be right, they think to themselves, I never saw any problem...

It's a problem I still have a issue with. I feel a lot of guilt over things I like, because they aren't good enough. I still struggle to accept I can be critical of something, often very heavily, and still enjoy it. In fact, it's better to be critical of what you love - how else can you help it improve if you can't see the flaws?

I think a lot...

I think this is too easy an answer. I think personally know a bunch of people who just don't get it. They don't believe that white/male/straight/cis privilege is a thing. And it isn't because they live easy lives and see relative ease around them. It's because they've busted their ass for 30-50 years (most are 45 to 60 years old that I personally know) and don't understand how it could possibly be worse for anyone else. These are guys that served in the military and srcraped together a modest living on blue collar trades, some of them self employed.

They are otherwise great guys, some are even socially progressive, but none of them accept the idea of what they concider "minority pandering." It's a very difficult conversation to have. Unfortunately, that level of being jaded is too far gone to reason with them. But it certainly isn't the result of a luxury lifestyle.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Crystal Frasier wrote:
This post honestly has me fairly angry. This random anonymous jerk is trying to use me as a handpuppet to undermine my own efforts at inclusion.

They're just jealous that you're super great.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Agreed.

JonGarett, I use the term disparagingly, or "with a sneer" (or an eyeroll). I've seen bigotry and contempt for homosexuals. I agree that bigotry is a serious problem and that it is still running rampant in our country. I just think that "Social Justice Warriors" are a++%~&!s. And since you're casting those of us who believe that with the "broad brush" I talked about earlier, I don't think you quite understand why we call them Social Justice Warriors to begin with.

Being a Social Justice Warrior is not good. It is the byproduct of the social justice movement, not the intended result. A Social Justice Warrior is a thug who completely misunderstands the purpose of the movement overall.

Obviously, not everyone who supports social justice deserves the label of SJW. Some people are just trying to make a difference. Kinda like not everyone who argues with social justice proponents (not social justice itself, keep in mind) deserves the label of "part of the problem". Funny how that works out, huh?

Kinda like how somebody who doesn't like a particular sect of Christianity doesn't automatically hate Jesus. I support social justice. I just think there are a lot of jerks amid the cause,...

Apologies. I tried to use terms like 'a lot of' and 'I think' to show that I don't believe everyone who does this is like this, and that its simply my opinion. That obviously doesn't entirely come across. There are certainly as some extreme views for social justice, to the point where it becomes social injustice on the opposite side of the scale.

However, the majority of people who use the term, in my personal experience, are people who simply don't like that we haven't made enough progress, and some of the things they love need to change if we're going to keep making progress.

Personally, I don't think of myself as a Social Justice Warrior, but I'm aware a lot of people would label me as one.

BigDTBone wrote:


I think this is too easy an answer. I think personally know a bunch of people who just don't get it. They don't believe that white/male/straight/cis privilege is a thing. And it isn't because they live easy lives and see relative ease around them. It's because they've busted their ass for 30-50 years (most are 45 to 60 years old that I personally know) and don't understand how it could possibly be worse for anyone else. These are guys that served in the military and srcraped together a modest living on blue collar trades, some of them self employed.

They are otherwise great guys, some are even socially progressive, but none of them accept the idea of what they concider "minority pandering." It's a very difficult conversation to have. Unfortunately, that level of being jaded is too far gone to reason with them. But it certainly isn't the result of a luxury lifestyle.

Its certainly part of the problem. Telling anyone that's had a hard life that they only had it as good as they did because they are straight and white when they know the crap they've had to endure is never going to go well. It's not simple to explain, especially to people over a certain age and from certain backgrounds, that you're not saying they had it easy, but that people from certain ethnicities, sexualities and such simply have things harder, or don't have options that they might have taken for granted.

I think my favourite way to explain privilege is Obama. No one will argue that the US President has power. Obama obviously has personal wealth. He obviously has a lot of Privilege. But...not as much as a white President. Can you imagine anyone demanding to see the birth certificate of a white President? Simply but, Privilege is made of a ton of factors. A coloured, destitute, disabled trans-person has got a lot stacked against them, and a lot of that is social. A rich, coloured, disabled trans person is still going to have a lot of issues, but not as many. And so it goes.

What I was trying to express, rather than people have an easy life (they often don't) but that they don't see the issues in the world around them, and don't understand why it needs to change. For many of the people on the net who are fighting those changes its because they can't equate things they love with being part of the problem, especially if they consider themselves pro-those-things. A lot of people off the net, as you've mentioned, simply know how hard there life has been and believe, quite rightly, that they've earned what they have through hard work, simply not getting that for other people getting the same thing is harder purely due to a quirk of fate.


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I think that's why some people hate the word "privilege", though. Honestly, I think it's a somewhat useless word, since it just pisses people off. Nobody likes being treated like a spoiled brat, and that's the connotation "check your privilege" comes with.

The word itself is accurate, of course. It's just not diplomatic. That's related to why I and most see "Social Justice Warrior" as a bad thing—it implies you are seeking to triumph over some foe, rather than seeking to educate.

The experienced, educated social justice proponent tries to explain, and never dismisses other viewpoints as the product of "privilege" or "bigotry" without first hearing out what the person has to say and trying to understand. The Social Justice Warrior wields words like "privilege" and "ignorant" as his primary weapons, fleeing the battle when these fail and disregarding any aim of education altogether.

In my opinion, the vocal minority has managed to recruit a lot of misguided newcomers and bolster its ranks. It's also what a lot of people are talking about when they say "social justice hurts gay rights/feminism/race equality". Because that type of social justice does.


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I can see your point. While I would personally prefer to (and typically tend to) focus on changing the opinion of those who prefer to maintain the status quo, I can certainly see an argument for trying to remove some of the more...exuberant view points some people put across.

I can't think of a more diplomatic way to get the idea of privilege across to people, but I agree it rubs people the wrong way - it upset me when I first ran into it. I'm a disabled bi guy from a working class family in the North of England - the only reason I wasn't physically mauled through school is despite my physical issues I'm somewhat the size and weight of a wall, and could lift most of the school bullies off there feet...one handed. Which was good, because only one arm works right. The idea that my life of constant pain and humiliation and mockery was a privilege was...awkward. Then I considered how, if only the colour of my skin was different how my life would have been, and I started to get it.


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Drejk wrote:
Flamboyant/camp gay kobold? I expect lots and lots of feathers...

{interrupted stuffing straw kobold under a catbus} Oh, hello. I'm Pillbug Toenibbler! You may remember me from such educational school films as "Forks and Toasters: Can They Ever Be Friends?" and "What Do Dingos Eat?"

I'd like to point out that archaeologists have numerous fossils that prove all kobolds have feathers. When they are little kobs, their parents have the talk with them and tell them to go pluck themselves. Goblin genetic research has revealed that kobolds are from a branch of dinosaurs that evolved into chickens, a branch of which themselves evolved into kobolds.

This film sponsored by Kyonin Fried Kobold. It's dewclaw-lickin' good!

Liberty's Edge Contributor

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Probably relevant to this discussion that "social justice warrior" is originally an insult, not a self-description. A few people may call themselves that now--mostly in jest--but it's mostly just a mocking label applied by a certain category of people on the internet who don't like it when a minority says "stop insulting me."


thejeff wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
That said, I think claims that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one are...true. No s&@*. Iconics are meant to be diverse, so surprise, surprise, they're still working on broadening the diversity.

Not to counter anything you said, but just to point out something that's easy to miss.

You're absolutely right that there is a transgender iconic solely because Paizo wanted to have one. There are also only cis iconics solely because Paizo wanted them. The same with straight ones and gay ones and bi ones and white ones and black ones and male and female and every other iconic there is. They're that way solely because Paizo wanted them that way. There is no default they would have been if someone at Paizo didn't make a choice.

As someone who is baffled by the sexualization of fictional characters, as a THING, I don't get any of this.

I'd be perfectly happy if none of the iconics' sexual preferences were ever defined. Who likes to put what in what hole has never once come up when discussing how to murder a monster and take its s@#%.


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meatrace wrote:


As someone who is baffled by the sexualization of fictional characters, as a THING, I don't get any of this.

I'd be perfectly happy if none of the iconics' sexual preferences were ever defined. Who likes to put what in what hole has never once come up when discussing how to murder a monster and take its s#~&.

It's important because we non-straight people need role models and representation, too. Nobody bats an eye when a heroic male "gets a girl" because it is the "default", but the second a lady hero saves the princess or male adventuring companions become a couple people get up in arms. It may not seem like it for you, but it is important.


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Pillbug Toenibbler wrote:
Drejk wrote:
Flamboyant/camp gay kobold? I expect lots and lots of feathers...
{interrupted stuffing straw kobold under a catbus} Oh, hello. I'm Pillbug Toenibbler! You may remember me from such educational school films as "Forks and Toasters: Can They Ever Be Friends?"

no


Albatoonoe wrote:
meatrace wrote:


As someone who is baffled by the sexualization of fictional characters, as a THING, I don't get any of this.

I'd be perfectly happy if none of the iconics' sexual preferences were ever defined. Who likes to put what in what hole has never once come up when discussing how to murder a monster and take its s#~&.

It's important because we non-straight people need role models and representation, too. Nobody bats an eye when a heroic male "gets a girl" because it is the "default", but the second a lady hero saves the princess or male adventuring companions become a couple people get up in arms. It may not seem like it for you, but it is important.

I don't think you get what I'm saying.

I completely understand your point. If it were important for the fiction books, I could agree. The iconics are NPCs. They're basically art resources. For all visible things, I'm totally for this. Have black and brown characters, female warriors, short heroes, tall lanky heroes, all that's great.

If Valeros were gay...how would you tell? In saying that, maybe he is. It's not a visible trait, and it needn't be defined. As characters whose identities you might assume when playing PFS or at a con, why not leave that up to the individual roleplayer?

This is a game in which WE determine the actions of the characters. If you feel non-straight players need role-models, then you have the ability to PLAY one. None of the iconics' sexualities has come into play in any published adventure, as far as I know, nor should it. It's a game about killing monsters and taking their s%@~.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

one of the things I notice in the world we live in is that with globalization and the diversification of opinions and values, people tend to show one of two reactions, "fight it" or "accept it". the events of recent years (decades) are throwing such reactions into the open.

While I could go into further detail of my own opinions, I don't wish to start a flame war or conflict on these message-boards. So I end my comment with one truth I have learned, For all of the time I have been a fan of Paizo and a member of these boards I have been honored to find a staff who are open and understanding of social issues.

And good luck with the freelancing Crystal! I know you will rock the world (of RPGs). :)


meatrace wrote:
Albatoonoe wrote:
meatrace wrote:


As someone who is baffled by the sexualization of fictional characters, as a THING, I don't get any of this.

I'd be perfectly happy if none of the iconics' sexual preferences were ever defined. Who likes to put what in what hole has never once come up when discussing how to murder a monster and take its s#~&.

It's important because we non-straight people need role models and representation, too. Nobody bats an eye when a heroic male "gets a girl" because it is the "default", but the second a lady hero saves the princess or male adventuring companions become a couple people get up in arms. It may not seem like it for you, but it is important.

I don't think you get what I'm saying.

I completely understand your point. If it were important for the fiction books, I could agree. The iconics are NPCs. They're basically art resources. For all visible things, I'm totally for this. Have black and brown characters, female warriors, short heroes, tall lanky heroes, all that's great.

If Valeros were gay...how would you tell? In saying that, maybe he is. It's not a visible trait, and it needn't be defined. As characters whose identities you might assume when playing PFS or at a con, why not leave that up to the individual roleplayer?

This is a game in which WE determine the actions of the characters. If you feel non-straight players need role-models, then you have the ability to PLAY one. None of the iconics' sexualities has come into play in any published adventure, as far as I know, nor should it. It's a game about killing monsters and taking their s#@#.

The iconics star in a comic book series.


Except they are characters in stories - the graphic novels have fully fleshed out the iconics. As a SWM I am perfectly happy to have GLBIQT characters - it is just as natural as having Asian, African and Middle Eastern analogs... Although the lack of oceanic/Islander and South American analogs needs to be addressed in Golarion.


Zoe Oakeshott wrote:
meatrace wrote:
Albatoonoe wrote:
meatrace wrote:


As someone who is baffled by the sexualization of fictional characters, as a THING, I don't get any of this.

I'd be perfectly happy if none of the iconics' sexual preferences were ever defined. Who likes to put what in what hole has never once come up when discussing how to murder a monster and take its s#~&.

It's important because we non-straight people need role models and representation, too. Nobody bats an eye when a heroic male "gets a girl" because it is the "default", but the second a lady hero saves the princess or male adventuring companions become a couple people get up in arms. It may not seem like it for you, but it is important.

I don't think you get what I'm saying.

I completely understand your point. If it were important for the fiction books, I could agree. The iconics are NPCs. They're basically art resources. For all visible things, I'm totally for this. Have black and brown characters, female warriors, short heroes, tall lanky heroes, all that's great.

If Valeros were gay...how would you tell? In saying that, maybe he is. It's not a visible trait, and it needn't be defined. As characters whose identities you might assume when playing PFS or at a con, why not leave that up to the individual roleplayer?

This is a game in which WE determine the actions of the characters. If you feel non-straight players need role-models, then you have the ability to PLAY one. None of the iconics' sexualities has come into play in any published adventure, as far as I know, nor should it. It's a game about killing monsters and taking their s#@#.

The iconics star in a comic book series.

Do they do a lot of sexual things in those comics?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
meatrace wrote:
Zoe Oakeshott wrote:
meatrace wrote:
Albatoonoe wrote:
meatrace wrote:


As someone who is baffled by the sexualization of fictional characters, as a THING, I don't get any of this.

I'd be perfectly happy if none of the iconics' sexual preferences were ever defined. Who likes to put what in what hole has never once come up when discussing how to murder a monster and take its s#~&.

It's important because we non-straight people need role models and representation, too. Nobody bats an eye when a heroic male "gets a girl" because it is the "default", but the second a lady hero saves the princess or male adventuring companions become a couple people get up in arms. It may not seem like it for you, but it is important.

I don't think you get what I'm saying.

I completely understand your point. If it were important for the fiction books, I could agree. The iconics are NPCs. They're basically art resources. For all visible things, I'm totally for this. Have black and brown characters, female warriors, short heroes, tall lanky heroes, all that's great.

If Valeros were gay...how would you tell? In saying that, maybe he is. It's not a visible trait, and it needn't be defined. As characters whose identities you might assume when playing PFS or at a con, why not leave that up to the individual roleplayer?

This is a game in which WE determine the actions of the characters. If you feel non-straight players need role-models, then you have the ability to PLAY one. None of the iconics' sexualities has come into play in any published adventure, as far as I know, nor should it. It's a game about killing monsters and taking their s#@#.

The iconics star in a comic book series.
Do they do a lot of sexual things in those comics?

Spoiler:
Kyra and Merisiel are in a relationship by the end of the first story arc.

just ninjaed by DM_aka_DudeMeister.

So two Bi/Lesbian Iconics are confirmed.


They have relationships - beyond the binary or default... Physical stuff is very subtle.

Ninja'ed


Also, sexual orientation is more than sex, of course. And it's portrayed in many different ways.

EDIT: And I hadn't seen Shandra before... Fantastic writeup.


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There's a big difference between sexual preference and gender identity. One is an interest the other is how you present yourself.

Yes, they both receive some pretty negative prejudice, but they are still different concepts.


Ragnarok Aeon wrote:
There's a big difference between sexual preference and gender identity. One is an interest the other is how you present yourself.

Of course (though gender identity is a bit more than how you present yourself); I don't know if your post was a response to mine though, which was a response to meatrace's post above.

Silver Crusade

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meatrace wrote:
None of the iconics' sexualities has come into play in any published adventure, as far as I know, nor should it. It's a game about killing monsters and taking their s&~@.

That's what the game is about for some.

Not so much for others.


JonGarrett wrote:
Well, I suppose they could have stayed true to the Dice Gods and let the random roll chart decide. 'OK, so the iconic fighter is a gay dark skinned Kobold. And the wizard is a trans ogre. This...may take some illustrating.'

This is how I design NPCs. True story.

Silver Crusade

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meatrace wrote:

As someone who is baffled by the sexualization of fictional characters, as a THING, I don't get any of this.

I'd be perfectly happy if none of the iconics' sexual preferences were ever defined. Who likes to put what in what hole has never once come up when discussing how to murder a monster and take its s#$%.

Gender/transgender is not about sex. It's about gender.

It's one of the oddities of our discourse that transgender folks are attacked or treated as sexual deviants when gender and sexuality are two different things.

*****

But on the subject of sexuality, notice how your complaint can read as a "just stay in the closet!" argument (whether or not you intend it that way). The "I don't care what you do in your bedroom, just don't ram it down our throats!" (to use the silly way it's often phrased). But of course that double standard is neither realistic nor humane. That's the kind of attitude that sought to punish me at work last year for mentioning "my husband" in conversation. (I worked it out in the end.)

Insofar as the iconics have back stories, are used in fiction and the comics, are presented in more relaxed scenes in artwork ... relationships will come up and be relevant from time to time.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Crystal Frasier wrote:
Probably relevant to this discussion that "social justice warrior" is originally an insult, not a self-description. A few people may call themselves that now--mostly in jest--but it's mostly just a mocking label applied by a certain category of people on the internet who don't like it when a minority says "stop insulting me."

It took me a while to understand that the people using the term "social justice warrior" weren't using it to refer to anyone who believes in/advocates social justice. Rather, they seem to be using it to make a mockery of the idea that the principles of social justice should be applied to artwork, media, and fiction to the same (or similar) degree as to legal, workplace, and social situations.

From what I'm given to understand, the basis for this is that people who mock "SJWs" fundamentally disagree with the belief that media has the power to normalize attitudes and behaviors - at least to any appreciable degree - and as such implicitly reject the assumption that changing what the media displays and how it displays it will necessarily make any positive changes to society at large. Rather, they're of the opinion that the media reflects attitudes already in place, and that changing the media requires making more fundamental changes to the social fabric of society, rather than vice versa.

This isn't to say that there aren't people using the term to justify acting like spiteful, self-centered jerks, of course. But the above attitude seems to be at the core of those with a philosophical opposition to "social justice warriors."

At the macro level, this is a debate about whether life imitates art, or art imitates life.


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Alzrius wrote:
Crystal Frasier wrote:
Probably relevant to this discussion that "social justice warrior" is originally an insult, not a self-description. A few people may call themselves that now--mostly in jest--but it's mostly just a mocking label applied by a certain category of people on the internet who don't like it when a minority says "stop insulting me."

It took me a while to understand that the people using the term "social justice warrior" weren't using it to refer to anyone who believes in/advocates social justice. Rather, they seem to be using it to make a mockery of the idea that the principles of social justice should be applied to artwork, media, and fiction to the same (or similar) degree as to legal, workplace, and social situations.

From what I'm given to understand, the basis for this is that people who mock "SJWs" fundamentally disagree with the belief that media has the power to normalize attitudes and behaviors - at least to any appreciable degree - and as such implicitly reject the assumption that changing what the media displays and how it displays it will necessarily make any positive changes to society at large. Rather, they're of the opinion that the media reflects attitudes already in place, and that changing the media requires making more fundamental changes to the social fabric of society, rather than vice versa.

This isn't to say that there aren't people using the term to justify acting like spiteful, self-centered jerks, of course. But the above attitude seems to be at the core of those with a philosophical opposition to "social justice warriors."

At the macro level, this is a debate about whether life imitates art, or art imitates life.

I don't think it's just media. I've seen in discussions about Michael Brown's killing and other potentially racial profiling situations in the real world.

It gets pulled out pretty much any time someone's talking about a kind of discrimination or prejudice that the mocker doesn't see or doesn't think it important.
And any time the word privilege is used.

Which isn't to say, some people don't use it that way or that it didn't start that way, but it's spread.


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The central problem with the term "social justice" is that there seems to be no definition of it, making it little more than a hooray word.


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"social justice" -

You say that often, I wonder what's your basis for comparison?


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Steve Geddes wrote:
Social justice aristocrat here. Just for the irony.

Strange, I know quite of few of those.

They're lovely people!


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Mikaze wrote:
meatrace wrote:
None of the iconics' sexualities has come into play in any published adventure, as far as I know, nor should it. It's a game about killing monsters and taking their s&~@.

That's what the game is about for some.

Not so much for others.

Not by way of disagreeing, but I'd say that the amount of ink dedicated to those topics in Pathfinder is considerably more than other RPGs which are widely available. It follows that that is the content that most people are interested in.

Yes, there are some people who are very into the characterization aspect of the game. I don't think that PF is the best rule set for that, but some incredible role-players are just totally unfazed by that and do it anyway. But those same people, in my experience, are much more likely to make their own characters rather than play iconics.

Meatrace's statement is essentially correct: this issue isn't central to the game at all. And it probably shouldn't be.

It is noteworthy that when Paizo sets up an example of characterization to inspire the playerbase, they portray a world of individuals with personalities that vary widely. That's awesome. "Morality" aside, I find armies of young hetero male teenaged power-fantasy badasses to be very tiresome.


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Crystal Frasier wrote:
Probably relevant to this discussion that "social justice warrior" is originally an insult, not a self-description. A few people may call themselves that now--mostly in jest--but it's mostly just a mocking label applied by a certain category of people on the internet who don't like it when a minority says "stop insulting me."

This was very close to being true. It is a mocking label, we can agree on that much, and it is often used by people like the MRA.

But I could say "a few people use the word 'privilege' in an educational manner, but it is mostly just used by social justice bullies so they can feel superior". It's not very conducive, though, is it?


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Also, being bisexual/transgender/whatever can be part of a character's backstory. All the iconics have backstories pre-written. I see what you're saying—you don't think the backstories themselves should exist—but that's a topic for another thread.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Crystal Frasier wrote:
Probably relevant to this discussion that "social justice warrior" is originally an insult, not a self-description. A few people may call themselves that now--mostly in jest--but it's mostly just a mocking label applied by a certain category of people on the internet who don't like it when a minority says "stop insulting me."

This was very close to being true. It is a mocking label, we can agree on that much, and it is often used by people like the MRA.

But I could say "a few people use the word 'privilege' in an educational manner, but it is mostly just used by social justice bullies so they can feel superior". It's not very conducive, though, is it?

You could say it, and it might not be conducive.

The real question though is, is it true?

Or more, which of those statements more closely reflects how the two terms are commonly used?


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
But I could say "a few people use the word 'privilege' in an educational manner, but it is mostly just used by social justice bullies so they can feel superior". It's not very conducive, though, is it?

Actually, as a total supporter of the notion of being aware of one's own privilege, I *do* see it used to bully people much more often than I see it used in a constructive manner. That's a real grievance.


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Yeah, I wasn't just making it up as a comparison. It bugs me, too.


I took "SJW"s to just be a wider category of "White Knights".


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Kryzbyn wrote:
I took "SJW"s to just be a wider category of "White Knights".

In the sense that it's mostly used to attack rather than engage, sure.

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