Hash. Tag. Sumthin.
“Why do you always say what you believe?
Why do you always say what you believe?
Every proclamation guarantees free ammunition for your enemies.”
So I woke up this morning (I’m lying already: it was the early afternoon) to discover that I’d been blocked by @fredhicks on Twitter. First things first: this hurt my feelings. My girlfriend, who is convinced I am the reincarnation of Alexander Hamilton, wouldn’t want me to do this, but I am writing about it while that hurt was still fresh.
Fred Hicks is a famous game designer (and it’s more likely I’ll always be other than famous). He created Evil Hat. He designed FATE Core. I don’t think I ever had a single personal interaction with him before today. Nonetheless, five years ago, his company was everything I wanted my company to be five years from then.
We’re not there yet, and that’s okay. Things take time–something, as an aside, which I understand at least a little bit better than that all-singing, all-dancing, mysteriously-Hispanic Alexander Hamilton the character–and Fred’s company is still today what I want my company to be two to five years from today. But if I keep saying what I believe and giving my enemies that free ammo, I don’t know. #HavingBeliefsIsProblematic.
This is me paraphrasing the exchange we had on twitter. I’m not going to include the actual tweets because–(secret not secret I HATE TWITTER)–that would be incredibly tedious. But if you want to find them, they’re up there, go nuts. I ain’t lyin.
Some Guy Who Makes Stupid Fucking T-Shirts (research bonus: there may be a nicely drawn gaming-themed webcomic involved?): @FredHicks: Look at this stupid fucking t-shirt I made.
Me: nifty, when do we get Favored Enemy: Feminists
Fred “I’m Fred Fucking Hicks And I’m Kind Of A Big Deal” Hicks: um, how about never, since that’s when that would be funny.
Me: you’re right, favored enemy: the patriarchy is funnier since it doesn’t exist
(This is the one tweet that I feel any need to clarify or contextualize. What I was saying here is, I was actually conceding his point that favored enemy “Feminists” isn’t actually funny as a joke, because some self-identified feminists (or so I’m told) are actually real people who might feel threatened by such an off-color joke as a fictional D&D ranger having +2 damage against them. I was conceding that point, while also poking fun at the fact that (in the West) the Patriarchy is an imaginary conspiracy that doesn’t exist. Of course only the second part came across, because twitter is for barbarians and because he already saw me as a favored enemy.)
Fred “I’m Fred Fucking Hicks And I’m Kind Of A Big Deal” Hicks: BLOCK’D BITCH!
So, that was that, I guess. Except, that is not that. Someone I have respected for years closes down my main ability to follow him or talk to him over a couple of jokes that didn’t match his politics? Because for one brief unfiltered second I said what I actually believed instead of virtue signaling to the SJW set? That’s fucking awful.
I just made the following comment somewhere in the vast webosphere of Evil Hat’s online presence:
I wouldn’t exactly call myself a fan of FATE as a system. But I’ve followed Evil Hat for years, I have great admiration for what you’ve accomplished, Fred, and to be honest, your company is everything I want my company to be two or three or five years from now…except for blocking people on twitter for the offense of expressing a different political opinion than yours, and being just a little bit snarky about it.
That is callous, and cruel, and harmful. It is the third one not just because it hurt my pwecious little feels, although to be honest: it did. It’s harmful because when you destroy a channel of discourse, you widen the gap between two camps that already dehumanize each other more and more in their respective isolated echo chambers, both sides virtue-signaling at each other (most of “my” (anti-SJW) side actually hates your side so much that they want to vote for clown meat orange Hitler, which as a Jewish-American socialist is so scary that it makes me want to hit the eject button from the planet earth) and de-humanizing the other side, both sides fapping separately to their two minutes hate.
We live in an ugly world and every time you erase someone from your narrative for disagreeing with you, you make it uglier.
Sincerely and sincerely butthurt,
Fred Hicks responded with an email that was harsh and a little cruel and missed most of my point, but at least he responded, for which he retains my respect. I was expecting a form letter at best.
What happens next?
My best guess is that I start selling a t-shirt that says favored-enemy: SJWs, Fred Hicks unblocks me on twitter, or both.
I also had a new idea for a game, satirical, powered by FATE Accelerated and inspired by D. Vincent Baker‘s undisputed best game, kill puppies for satan. Working title? Kill SJWs for Milo. Because obviously, Milo Yiannopoulis maps well to satan in those circles…and in general. 😉