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What is Appropriate?

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Science fiction is a wonderful genre of literature and small and large screen media. Online activity has also become a vast source of fun activities. Or what is supposed to be fun activities. Today I would like to speak of role-playing forums and what is appropriate material for them to be involved in. My experience was with a Star Wars role playing site. The following was posted somewhere else for a time.

Rebels and Reaves-Jianna's Blog.

I was a member of a role-playing forum called There however I ran into the most insidious and destructive of occurances and issues. It is called bigotry. Bigotry about beliefs is a reprehensible occurance in our society.

Rebels has a small group of posters who are all Christian conservatives. Some are conservative Catholics. That is not a bad thing in itself. As in everything else what you do with it is what matters. All of them had one thing in common. They are all pro-life. That is not bad either as long as you respect other people's opinions. On the Rebels forum they have an area devoted to 'Debate and Discourse'. One of their administrators Rive Caedo also adhers to pro-life beliefs.

These Christian posters are allowed to belittle, humilitate, demean, and engage in name-calling towards anyone who does not believe as they do. As a pro-choice advocate I was called a murderer, compared to Adolph Hitler, called an idiot, had my intelligence questioned, called irrational and in general treated terribly. Yet when I retaliated I was the only one who received an administrative warning, though one of the other posters had been repeatedly warned for name-calling other pro-llife posters previously. His name is Lord Invictus. The administrator who gave me the administrative warning was Rive Caedo. He then proved just how lacking he is in character, morals and values. When I complained and said that I was going to the forum host he deleted and edited posts deliberately of himself and the pro-life posters while leaving the ones that incriminated me. It was done in the wee hours of the morning, when cowardly sneaks are up and about. In particular he edited one where he reprimanded me and not them to make himself look better. He said I wasn't setting a good example for the younger posters. How is allowing them to engage in bigotry and then showing them that you hide what you do dishonestly, teaching them anything right? Though he tried to say that it was because of my complaints that action was taken against me, that was a blatant falsehood. He had already gone to the other administrative staff before I complained. He can add untruthful to his character resume. It had nothing to do with anything other than my persistance in my pro-choice stance.

Mr. Caedo is truly lacking as an administrator and Rebels is lacking in fairness, objectivity and rightful purpose as a science fiction roleplaying site. Much of the reason revolves around his shortcomings. Rebels is a vitrupretive, mannerless, posturing by teens and himself club/den of wrongful activity. It is no place for young teens who deserve a far better role model than him. One of the posters believes it would be better if his own mother died in childbirth than had an abortion. He has no true idea of the severity of the long term consequences that would come from such an occurance.

I looked at some of their postings and in the way of extremists, I am now the one to blame, not them. My Free Forum would not take responsibkility for the site it hosts either. They believe in a laissez faire approach to forum hosting. I wonder what George Lucas would think. Would he think this subject matter appropriate for the Star Wars universe he created? I doubt. Or that Mr. Caedo would make a good Jedi. Dishonesty isn't in their code.
I bring this subject up because science fiction was meant for enjoyment not this type of extreme activity. Whether it is the world of J.K. Rawlings, Anne McCaffrey, David Eddings, or the late Robert Jordan it should take us to a place where we can get away from the real world and broaden the horizons of our imaginations. Role-playing and fan fiction help writers and posters to develop characters and grow in the creative arts. It is not meant to be a place of zealotry and ridicule. The subject matter is not even of an appropriate age for some of the age group on site. Then the question becomes, what should be done about such activity? Perhaps more parents need to pay attention to their children's online subject matter.

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  1. Jeremy Lauglin's Avatar
    I belonged to Rebels too and the same thing happened to me. I was constantly bereated and laughed at for what I thought. Finally I left. That site is just awful.
  2. Joshua210's Avatar
    I have read a few things about this happening on forums. Not just the SW ones. I think people forget why they're there which is to enjoy themselves. Most of the teens I coach know a little about politics, but are more interested in other stuff. You know the normal stuff. Girls, sports, batting stats, video games. Not this kind of stuff.

    I thing is if I caught my team belittling someone like that, I'd put a stop to it. Should the kid being jumped on leave? I don't think so. I think I'd bench the offenders.
  3. Jianna33's Avatar
    I think you have the right idea Joshua210. I have heard from some more people who it also happened to there. A few more who described the same experience on other rp forums too. What is a shame is that some great lit comes out of them. It seems like the problems occur on the ones that have debate sections.