Scream, clap, laugh, win: Humor makes a great molotov cocktail

Luke McKinney's new article — a follow-up to his infamous piece on "straight white male" being sexuality's lowest difficulty setting (you may remember John Scalzi's still-famous article expanding that idea) — on 5 Gamer Comments That Give Straight White Guys a Bad Name had me screaming and clapping while simultaneously laughing coffee out my nose.

As Scalzi points out in his blog today, this IS written on, so it's got a marvelous left-handedness where you know that some of the people being called assholes in this article — in lovely metaphor-laden smackdown style — are going to be reading and commenting on it…and boy, do they.  I've stayed off the comment thread myself, mostly because all I really want to say is fuck yes, Luke.  Way to hit a second home-run just to prove you can! 

…It's really impossible to pick a "best" part of this to quote, but…

"People want to bang you = easy life" is the worst sexual equation since David Carradine's work with knot theory.


But seriously?  I think it's incredibly important that topics like this one be handled with loud, raucous, stabby humor whenever possible.  It's hard to speak accurate truth to power, sure; but it's even harder to make power hear it, and those people who can take truths and wrap them in you-can't-ignore-me linguistic molotov cocktails are treasures of humanity.  It's precisely why comedians and satirists are so vitally important to every movement, and I'm chest-burstingly proud that the No More Forced Pregnancies-related movements have voices like Luke (and Scalzi) on their side.  <3!

About puredoxyk

Word addict, kungfu/taiji nut, and life-partner to polyphasic sleep. Rabid fan of as many hobbies as the world will let me pry into its piddly fourth dimension (it helps to have knocked out the fourth wall).
This entry was posted in better thinking, ethics, logos addict, no more forced pregnancies, technical-ity, writing. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Scream, clap, laugh, win: Humor makes a great molotov cocktail

  1. bioassay says:

    I was playing devil's advocate. He lists sex as a basic physiological need, but you're right- that doesn't seem reasonable.

    Also I retract my initial criticism of the analogy, after thinking about it more I don't think it prevents the analogy from achieving it's goal of explaining privilege in a different way.

  2. bioassay says:

    Thanks, I misunderstood the analogy, not realizing it was comparing the relative severity of different difficult situations. Still, it confuses individual circumstances with generalities. In a video game on "easy mode" every challenge IS easy. In real life, white males are victims of crimes just as serious as other groups. These relative risk of these crimes to different groups does represent a HUGE injustice- an injustice that this analogy fails to represent meaningfully.

    I'd also argue that it's not "open and shut" to assume that sexual expression is far less important than physical safety. For example, Maslow's hierarchy of needs makes the opposite assumption.

    • puredoxyk says:

      Ummm….I think you need to look at the heirarchy of needs again…specifically the position of “Safety”…also, are you perhaps high right now?  ;)  I mean really…that’s quite a…um…statement you’ve made there.  I do appreciate your grammar and persistence, though!

  3. bioassay says:

    The "lowest difficulty setting" idea trivializes the difficulties that individual straight white males face, as somehow inherently lesser than the difficulties anyone else faces. While straight white males might face less difficulties expressing their sexuality in a healthy, safe, and socially acceptable way on average, this does not dictate the specific circumstances of individuals. I've known plenty of straight white males that were unable to express their sexuality in a socially acceptable way for various reasons including awkwardness, mental illness, objectionable looks, etc. and are labeled "creepy" or publicly ridiculed at any attempt. This often results in extreme frustration, loneliness, depression, and even suicide. These individuals aren't playing on the "lowest difficulty setting," they're playing in "Nightmare!" mode- a no-win scenario they never signed up for.

    • puredoxyk says:

      bioassay, I think the point is that “being unable to express your sexuality in a socially-acceptable way” IS a pretty trivial problem compared to, say, “one in six people like you will be raped and less than a tenth of the people who do it will go to jail”, or “on an average trip outside, you’re pretty likely to be sexually harrassed or assaulted in some way”, or “not getting paid the same as other people who do the same work”.

      What you’re saying is correct, but it’s like answering “my mom was murdered yesterday!” with a reply of, “oh YEAH?  Well MY car won’t start!”  It sucks that your car won’t start — that men have some problems with sexuality too — but bringing it up in response to hearing the effects that sexism has on women is cringingly off-beat.  The correct answer is to acknowledge and address the serious problems that are being held in front of your face — and which men must play a role in fixing — and THEN we can go jump your car.  I’m sure all those rape-free women who have access to birth control and equal pay would be super happy to help.

Comments are closed.