While this post frames everything in the terms of RPGs, it originally was not written about anything in the RPG world. It was written about people objecting to switches who were in an active relationship as a Dominant not being welcome at SJW. It was the rule when I took over the event. I kept it, despite being told I was a bigot for doing so, because I saw changing what I was given as beyond my remit. I wrote this as an illustration of what I thought would be a stronger course for those calling me a bigot. You might say I was trying to get them to believe in the future.
My successor changed it, and I have no problem with that. We each view what is and is not within our stewardship differently.
However, today I ran across this tweet:
I listening to Sophia’s video, where she discusses how she would have no more right to change a game the complainers created that matched their desires and expectations, I was reminded of this post. Believe in what you want in the world and go out and create it instead of forcing the people who are “wrong” to build it for you is still worth saying.
For those who don’t know me I’m big into role-playing games (not that kind you pervs…well, yeah, that kind too but here I’m more talking D&D). In fact, I’m active in the local gamer’s online community. A common thing in online gamer communities is ads for games that need players. They’ll read something like “new oWoD:Changling game looking for players interested in a magical band a la ‘War for the Oaks'”.
Now, for those not familiar with RPGs nWoD stands for “New World of Darkness”, a line of games including Vampire, Werewolf, Mage, Giest, Changling, and so on. As you’d expect there is also an “Old World of Darkness” that predated it that also included Vampire, Werewolf, Mage, Wraith, Changling, and so on. Some people only play nWoD games, some only play oWoD games, and some play both. Some will play either Mage but neither Vampire and only old Werewolf. Of course, there are plenty of other combos. For example, in general I’ll give any nWoD game a shot and have a strong interest in Mage, Changling, and Werewolf. In the oWoD only Mage and Wraith interest me although I’ve played some of the others. I played quite a bit of oWoD:Changling for example.
So, let’s go back to our add for a “new oWoD game”. If I showed up not wanting to play oWoD:Changling but nWoD:Changling I’d be told “sorry, but we don’t have a spot for you”. Some people think I should be insulted. They would say there is clearly prejudice against nWoD players here. They would wonder when people would grow out of hating those who wanted to play different games.
I, however, know better. These people are looking to have a specific experience, that of playing oWoD:Changling. I might think the new version is better (I do). I might think injecting some nWoD:Changling into the old could spice it up. I might even think they will have less fun than they could. However, I also know that I am not them. I know that they do not exist simply to please or even merely include me. They are people with their own desires and agendas that, to be quite honest, don’t include me not because of prejudice or hatred but simply their things and my things don’t overlap. If they did based on their ad I’d be more than welcome. Actually, I probably know at least one person in the game given gamers are a small community. We probably have played in a game or at least just BSed at the game store or online about games. If our desires haven’t intersected in the past there are good odds they may in the future.
Perhaps I’m wrong. Perhaps this particular group is prejudiced against me. Perhaps that’s why they don’t want me at their game. Well, that’s their choice and just as I expect them not to show up at my nWoD:Changling game pretending to be nobles of a dying hidden race of elves instead of someone kidnapped by fairies in the past who then escaped I accept I have no right to demand to be that kidnapping victim in their game of dying nobles. The ability to acknowledge people have different desires that may not interesect with mine and they would like to be able to set off a private space to pursue them without me is both the essence of tolerance and a key sign of adulthood.
I wish more gamers understood tolerance and adult behavior.