I’ve been watching and reading about the whole Hugo Award controversy surrounding the Sad Puppy/Rabid Puppies slates and the Anti-Puppy response. I am a huge fan of Science Fiction and Fantasy. I devour it in any form. From Books, to Comics, Movies, and Video Games…you name it I love it. But I’ve never had an opportunity to attend a Science Fiction Convention, you know, the old school convention, a gathering of a bunch of nerds who fawn after their favorite authors and get together and revel in their glorious nerdiness. I wanted to but just never had much opportunity. I never had the chance to be a member of Fandom or a Trufan, I’ve had other fish to fry, I suppose. I’ve been following this big mess that the Hugo nominations and voting has become and it occurs to me that I should be glad I’m not involved in that world because then I would be all butt hurt in one shape or form over it.
Admittedly I’m a fan of Larry Correia, Brad Torgersen, Michael Z. Williamson, Sarah Hoyt, John Ringo, well almost the whole Baen Stable really. My politics are socially liberal and fiscally conservative, limited government with a hawkish bent (that’s my military upbringing speaking). Classic Liberal if you will, libertarian versus Libertarian. I’m a military veteran and I like military SF, it speaks to me. But that’s beside the point really. The sad reality is that both sides are more interested in tearing each other down then they are convincing anybody of the righteousness of their cause.
Why is more time spent by both sides on painting each other in broad strokes from a blood soaked brush than there is arguing from logic and attempting to persuade others to their way of thinking? Honest, frank, much-needed discussion about the state of this “fandom” is sorely needed from where I sit. But instead we’ve all absorbed this insane concept of identity politics to such a level that we cannot even discuss our mutually enjoyed pass-time (whether you create it or consume it) without verbally murdering each other in full view of the public eye. It’s sad really and I wish you all would just stop, step back from it all, drop the righteous indignation, and attempt to see the other side’s point of view. There’s just no way that there are as many evil monsters on either side as you are all declaring! The internet is an awesome thing but in a lot of ways it’s taken the politeness out of society. It is now too easy to demean and degrade and defame someone from a distance with no worries about a face to face confrontation.
This whole thing makes me happy in the end. Happy that I’m not a Trufan, because if I were, I’d be very embarrassed right now.
Addendum 5/21/15: I realized that some may take (or already have taken) my attempt at being witty about fans at cons and “fawning” and so forth as a slight or insult. For the record, I’m a nerd too, just not one that was ever involved in cons. If necessary I believe that my heavy involvement in the SCA during the mid to late 90’s could serve as proof of my nerdiness…my membership card if you will :) Fawning after my favorite authors at a con and reveling in my own nerdiness is, literally, what I’d do. Probably while dressed as an elf or maybe Capt. Michael O’Neal.