Being Positive – Why I Want Diversity in Media

So today I had one of three things I originally intended to write. A mocking, derisive satire of what Gen-X sounds like when they punch down at Millennials. A scathing piece on the holdovers from gaming’s “We’re Totally Not An Anti-Women Hate Group” Anti-Women Hate Group still pretending they’re the beleaguered good guys in the argument over whether having representation of people who aren’t straight white cis males will ruin gaming forever (it won’t, dummies!), or a commentary on the pro-rape activists whose leader was, hilariously, humiliated by the Daily Mail.

But then I thought, why? With the exception of the first, most rational people understand how wrong those things are and while Gen-X’s imaginary construct of what us Millennials are like is a particular pet peeve of mine, how much purpose would it serve?

So while I probably will post eventually about that topic, today I want to be a bit more positive. I came up with two topics. One was a bit brag-y (although it’s related to Buff Buddies so I may put it up somewhere), and the other was a positive flip on the diversity-in-media topic. So here we go!

You might wonder, if you’re cynical like me, why I want diversity in video games, SFF and other media so much. I mean, I’m pretty much the poster child for what the sort of scumbag who uses “SJW” as an insult imagines is “normal,” their imaginary “default” state of human: I fully identify with my physical sex, which is male, I’m white, I’m straight and I have no physical disabilities. While I am prone to extreme depressive states, I have never been diagnosed and it’s entirely possible these states can be attributed as much to my circumstances as they can be to the chemistry of my brain.

So to recap, no disabilities, straight, white, cis male. Someone who only understands selfish motivation would have to ask why I want other people represented by heroes in our modern psyche-shaping mythologies, which for my generation are video games and popular fiction (and for my “tribe” as it were, particularly SFF).

(I know, right, another post by a straight white cis dude. But please bear with me, I do mean well)

Well, part of it is still kind of selfish. I’m a writer. And I write SFF. By having more representation, the genre will become more open, be given more voices, and be improved in general by more contributions from people whose experiences are different from my own. That additional boost in baseline quality will force me to write better books to keep up, and will add respectability to the genre as well.

The second is, well, if the collective consciousness is taking in perspectives from everyone, not just people like me, humanity can become more unified. People like GamerGaters will become less and less influential, and fewer in number. The divisions beloved of governments of corporations between ordinary people based on stupid bullshit like melanin will dissolve, and therefore most power held by governments and corporations – all too often based on pitting the governed against one another – with them. It wouldn’t be an overnight thing, of course, but if the common cultural parlance sees no difference in the humanity between a black trans lesbian woman and a white straight cis male en masse then I’d call that a win, and you teach people through stories.

Maybe that was rambling, as well-intentioned as it is. Oh well, it’s a Sunday, it’s sunny, and I’m done being serious now.

Being Positive – Why I Want Diversity in Media

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