I know putting 52.5 after 53 might seem counterintuitive, but this really is just an extension of the More Angry Feminist musings entry.
So one of my most favorite whinging lefties, actually like me, she’s more of a jumping up and down on your throat lefty, Melissa McEwan, the founder of Shakesville, did an interview with a Kristin Kalning at MSNBC about the whole Fat Princess controversy.
Now, the intro sounds promising, where Ms. Kalning explains that the Feminist bloggers are saying that the game is disrespectful, and that the game’s defenders are just telling the Feminists to shut up. However, she rapidly starts to lose me when she refers to people being “easily offended” and then references an article about a game called “Super Columbine Massacre RPG” which was released on the sixth anniversary of the tragedy, and allows the player to play one of the two perpetrators. Ok, if being offended by something like that makes me “easily offended” I’d hate to see what Ms. Kalning thinks is justifiably offensive.
Reading further, it’s kind of difficult to figure out what Kalning’s agenda is at first. She’s definitely NOT presenting the frothing “UR FAT!1!” crew in a positive light, but she’s not so flattering to the people who were pissed about the game either, and as the article goes on she gets increasingly less so. Vitriol from both sides is a “turn-off” and the Feminists who are upset over it are “oversensitive women with one hand in the Doritos, the other furiously typing words like ‘heteronormative…'” Wow, misogyny, anti-feminism AND fat hate in one sentence. From a woman.
For the love of little green apples.
I wish I could say it surprised me, but it doesn’t. I know, women are frequently some of the worst misogynists out there.
This next quote is just, wow. “To me, though, those arguments seem less like self-aware folks in touch with their fatness and more like people who want to laugh at themselves first before anyone else does. You know, like the guy in high school who smiled wanly as he pulled himself out of the garbage can the jocks stuffed him into.”
I think… I just had a brain aneurysm. Ok, first, her example sucks. Laughing at yourself first is not smiling after you’ve been victimized, it’s victimizing yourself first. It’s zinging yourself with the “I’m so hip I have to wear wide pants” line before someone else can make a crack about your hips. It’s drawing your own attention to your ass or thighs before someone else does. And, not to mention that is completely and utterly not what’s been happening in ANY of the articles criticizing Fat Princess. Reading comprehenshun, U CN HAZ IT! Seriously, it would have helped if she’d, I don’t know, actually presented any of the actual arguments. She allows Melissa to say that the game is hostile to fat women, but doesn’t allow her to elaborate on it. This is what passes for journalism these days?
Now, I actually DO agree with this quote: “I don’t think that Sony and developer Dark Star Industries hatched some malevolent plan in a basement to make fun of overweight people.”
I don’t think that Sony and Dark Star Industries did this on purpose, either. And in some ways, that makes it worse, the unthinking cruelty of a society in which fat people, particularly fat women, are played for laughs. I’m also sure that they didn’t really think about the fact that the only female character in the game is completely helpless, both in the face of her captors and in the face of food.
That’s a whole lot of offensive shit that could have been prevented with a little thinking.
5 thoughts on “Geek Girls Rule! #52.5 – As long as the media keeps lobbing them out there, I’ll keep smashing them back.”
That almost makes me wish I had children, so I could forbid them to play it.
I’m so glad you addressed this.
I did, too: http://fanbitch.livejournal.com/89299.html
Thanks for pointing out that article. I think you misinterpreted one quote, though:
“Oversensitive women with one hand in the Doritos” is what “some of the pro–“Fat Princess” comments from people — guys, presumably — who admit to being a bit rotund themselves” sound like. It’s not her own opinion, it’s a criticism of those “rotund people” and how they subscribe to negative stereotypes of fat women.
I thought the article did a fairly good job of staying neutral.
You know, I think that’s open for interpretation. It isn’t very clear. I just went back and reread it several times, and while I think you might be right about how she intended it, it doesn’t scan that way when read, for most people, judging by comments I’ve seen in other blogs about it.
It sounds more like she agrees with them, than merely paraphrasing.
Media people like to appear impartial, to take the middling stance — even when one side is 90% wrong. They split the difference. Then one side is justifiably offended — and the other UNjustifiably so, because they can never be pleased by anything but total compliance. When everybody squawks, the media folks conclude that they must be doing their job right. It’s low effort, it preserves their image and it doesn’t require too much critical thinking or spine.