It’s a little ironic that Brad Torgersen is being accused of racism, which you’ll understand if you click on the link:
What disturbs me more is that the field of SF/F is stooping this low.
That some of my colleagues — and no, contrary to my impression of the
field 20 years ago, not everyone likes or gets along with each other —
have decided to make the nerd argument over the Hugos into a decidedly
personal grudge match. Where the objective is to not just win the
argument, but to destroy the arguer. Professionally. In the
marketplace. On the big stage of public opinion. This is the kind of
stuff you ordinarily find in cut-throat national political elections,
but then it’s been clear for years that cut-throat politics have drifted
down into nerd circles of all kinds: comic book circles, movie and
television circles, video game circles, etc. There’s simply no escaping
it. And there are people for whom winning is more important than
ethics, more important than integrity, and more important than the
And the truth is, I’m not the dastardly guy Biedenharn’s piece makes me out to be. And neither is Larry Correia.
Am I concerned with the infestation of political correctness which
has invaded SF/F over the last 15 years? You bet. Today’s ride on the
media dunking machine was just another iteration in the near-endless
attempts by the politically correct to enforce their views, with slander
and falsehoods when it comes down to it. Our field is diseased. It
has been struck by the same mental virus that has been permeating other
sectors of our culture. As one astute and recovered victim put it, the
new zealots are a cult who dwell in depression and anger, seeking the slightest excuses to lash out and make other people suffer:
There is something dark and vaguely cultish about this
particular brand of politics. I’ve thought a lot about what exactly that
is. I’ve pinned down four core features that make it so disturbing:
dogmatism, groupthink, a crusader mentality, and anti-intellectualism.
Today, the crusader mentality decided to defame and slander Brad R.
Torgersen the evil demonic racist and hateful sick bigoted misognynist. As my friend Larry often quips, if I was half the bastard some of these crusaders say I am, I’d probably hate me too….
But really, when SF/F sinks to this depth, you know we’ve jumped a
certain kind of unfortunate shark. Political correctness has gone to a
place of destructive take-no-prisoners soul tyranny that could very well
and permanently wreck this field; unless good men and women of
conscience decide to stand up. I made the decision a long time ago that
I wasn’t going to be one of those professionals who diplomatically
skulks around the field, obsequiously trying to avoid controversy and
not upset the bigger fish. Again, I’ve seen too much of the elephant.
My career isn’t so important to me that I am willing to become an
ideological chameleon, or cipher. Perhaps this has angered some people
to the point they believe it’s time to “end” Torgersen once and for all?
If so, I think that’s a very sad statement — about the vindictiveness
that has overtaken the genre, among men and women who should probably be
working hard to be friends.
Folks, until or unless political correctness is given the boot, this kind of stuff isn’t going to stop.
It won’t be just me getting the torch. It will be you too. You
other authors, and you other fans. Political correctness has a
bottomless stomach, and is red in tooth and claw. Even if you try to
appease the beast, it will eat you eventually anyway.
Needless to say, I’m a little less surprised. I was openly warned about my sinful nature in the eyes of science fiction’s thought police more than 10 years ago, and attacked by a few of those self-appointed thought police for my thought crimes. They know perfectly well that I don’t care what they call me, so they’re going in search of what they think is easier prey, of people more inclined to give in.
Aren’t they in for a surprise!