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Regarding RaceFail ’09

Regarding RaceFail ’09 published on

(Situation-dump here.) Not that my opinion matters, but I feel vaguely like a wuss for not saying anything. In order from easiest to hardest:

1) Will Shetterly and Kathryn Cramer are assholes.

2) Teresa Nielsen-Hayden is also an asshole. Whether she intended that stuff she said to sound threatening or not (and I think she did) is moot, because it did sound threatening. She’s an idiot if she thinks it’s not going to affect the kinds of submissions Tor gets and the kind of things people feel safe discussing with her. She can pretend otherwise if she wants, but she’s in a position of power within the industry and the community. She has a responsibility to think about what she says, because it can do damage.

3) Elizabeth Bear’s original post was lazy and naive. Her later turn-around makes it unlikely I’ll ever be able to bring myself to read anything she’s written again. Irrationally, I feel bad about this, as if I shouldn’t bring personal feelings into my nerd-reading habits – that it’s somehow unprofessional of me, as a nerd. I imagine that this little guilty impulse is a version of one of the Geek Social Fallacies, I don’t know.

But, you know, I can get over it. My enjoyment of the vampire detective thing is seriously hindered by the knowledge that the person who wrote this paragraph about bloodstains here, also wrote certain incredibly stupid paragraphs about race on her LiveJournal over there. I will not ever finish the vampire detective thing.

4) It’s less than encouraging to me that it apparently took an attack on coffeeandink (white person) to get a lot of people paying attention to this. I appreciate that this is an awful thing, but I can’t help that think that TNH threatening professional repercussions on people who complain about racism is the worse problem and is going to have bigger long-term consequences.

5) I’ve only mentioned white people’s names and white-people-related problems in this post so far. Semi-randomly-selected good/useful posts: here, here, here, here, here, here