I am getting sick of non-discussions and anger debates but what can a man do other than to add his two cents?
I’m getting tired of complaining about ANN and its idiotic antics much like with the Shield Hero non-scandal thing back then but bear with me.
The reviewer calls it
a book authored by a cis person who only discovered the existence of nonbinary people, through a random, haphazard Google search, shortly before endeavoring to write it—this is admitted in the author’s note
and argues the author is risk factor because
the mangaka, Kata Konayama, is cisgender.
Oh boy. Here we go again. This logic.
Quite frankly, occasionally, it felt like less like a review and more like a character assassination.
Needless to say, not everyone was pleased but as ANN moderation would have it, critical comments are shut down and described as attacks on the reviewer.
It’s the good ol’ tactic of:
1. Talk shit.
2. Get hit.
3. “HELP I’M BEING HARRASSED”
You’ve seen this before. It’s not exactly original. Do you know how many times this has been done on the Internet? What’s sad is that it works so well.
But I really don’t care about the manga – never read it -, the reviewer – literally who – or the subject matter – couldn’t relate less if I tried -, that’s not of importance.
What pisses me off is that the reviewer has the gall to claim that if you don’t belong to a certain group of people, you shouldn’t be allowed to write about them and parts of the comment section actually agree. I’d care less about this if this was just an isolated incident but I’ve seen this kind of thinking so many times by now and it just baffles me, hence the blog post. So anytime a writer writes about something that he’s interested in but hasn’t experienced himself… and puts in the necessary research… we should condemn that? And the thirst of knowledge is bad? As it is to strive for understanding and communicate passion?
That sounds counterproductive. Because keep in mind as we need to extinguish the The Wires (white people writing about the sociocultural issues of Baltimore) of this world, let’s also not forget about all the Megumi no Daigos and Fune wo Amus and just kinda sorta everything else as well. I bet Masahito Soda has never worked as a firefighter before! And Miura Shion? There’s no way she’s put work into the creation of a dictionary! Research? Passion? What are those?
Christ, this isn’t a job application where you need experience in a certain field. Before trying to apply this logic willfully to everything, you might just wanna start with doing that with ANN’s recruitment because one thing’s for sure, there’s pretty much nobody with any experience in journalism there. And it shows. Telling others to not engage with something they have previously had no interest in is narrow-minded and idiotic. We don’t call this “qualification”. We call it “discrimination”.
See, this isn’t about applying sensical standards. I’m all for “You wanna write about the subject matter? Then know what you’re talking about!” but that’s not what this is about. This is about purity tests. It’s all about “ARE YOU WOKE ENOUGH FOR ME?” Putting other people down is easier than you yourself climbing up the pedestal since that requires effort but the result is the same – you can be under the impression you’re better than others. Yes, yes, nice virtue signaling there. I remain unimpressed.
For fuck’s sake, I spend big chunks of my freetime studying Japanese because I care, I’m not appropriating their culture therefore. There’s a difference between that and the orientalist “AND THEN I NAMED MY JAPANESE CHARACTER FENG SHUI THE DOG EATER”.
I’m not sure what’s supposed to be the end goal here anyway. Social progress? That can’t be it. We all talk about how we need to raise awareness for the social and cultural issues of our time. Racism, economic injustices, etc. Granted, we could do with a whole lot less finger pointing and accusations but the will to make everyone care is there. And then all of that is trampled upon the moment the previously ignorant start to engage with the subject matter and begin to care because they are caring the wrong way. THESE ARE YOUR ALLIES, YOU DIPSHITS. IF YOU THINK THEY’RE STARTING ON THE WRONG FOOT, TEACH THEM HOW TO DO BETTER.
But once again, that would require more effort than calling something “appropriation”.
This entire “we must keep amongst ourselves and not try to speak about others or interact with one another” logic is essentially the kind of stuff you’d expect from the faux-agreeable rightist to say. See, the faux-agreeable rightist doesn’t say “Racism is good. We must eliminate other races.”, the faux-agreeable rightist says “Of course racism is bad! All I’m saying is – let’s keep to our own. Preserve cultures instead of interfering with them. Let’s have our own secluded spaces. Europeans should stay amongst themselves and so should Arabs, preserving their traditions and inherent values.”
For some reason, it’s exactly what you sometimes get to hear from faux-progressives as well. Except their line of reasoning is different. This time, we must segregate out of “respect for others”. That’s the woke logic behind it. Men should not write female characters. Whites shouldn’t write about blacks. Let’s all just build enough barriers to make sure we don’t appropriate.
Let’s get rid of racism by eliminating Halloween customes. We look the other way when native Americans are forced to live in reservoirs but when Lil’ Billy dresses up as one of them because he thinks it “looks cool”? Boy, twitter needs to know about that one. And the mass media. That’s what ends racism right there.
Never must our paths intertwine, not once must we say things about each other, let’s be huddled amongst ourselves, we must be put into separate zones, looking at those that are not like us from afar, a safe distance so the safe zones do not collide – much like within a zoo. There’s a sign right there that says “Worship them from afar. Silently appreciate. Do not appropriate.”
After all, interaction is bad. The wrong doctrine. Separate. Segregate. Seclude. Keep them seated in different busses. Jeez, what do ANN writers think we are, some kind of melting pot?
I don’t care if your logic is a different one and your reasoning ‘sounds prettier’ than the faux-rightist’s one. That’s make-up. It’s just aesthetics. It’s the results that count. “I was politely segregationist unlike that racist piece of rightist trash over there.” isn’t a hill to die on if it’s a mountain of corpses and I’ve seen this more and more lately. Applying this nonsense to writers is about the worst you could do. Man, some of these people wander so far to the left they pop up at my right side again. How does that even work?
But you know what? Fuck that. I’m gonna do my own thing. And so should you. Screw those miserable sacks!
Because in the meanwhile, I’ll enjoy my stories about firefighters, dictionary makers, high school runners, victorian maids in love, armed librarians, hospital doctors, football players, card game playing and world saving teenagers as well as magical girls fighting to their deaths.
And there is nothing even the most narrow-minded ANN writer can do to stop me; because even on my more pessimistic days, I will still be more open to the world than they could ever be.
And now if that isn’t a silver lining, what else could be?