SF/F genre drama, May 2014 edition

So there have been a couple more rounds of SF/F genre drama going around, which I’ve mostly missed due to the recent round of medical annoyance that I have, at this point, mostly fought off. I am therefore coming in late to this round, but will note in passing nonetheless that:

One, the drama surrounding this year’s slate of Hugo nominations, and how certain infamous personages got into the list of nominations. I’ve basically seen two overall camps of response to this: 1) OHNOEZ THEY MUST HAVE RIGGED THE NOMINATIONS (mostly from the left-leaning SF/F genre crowd), and 2) HOW DARE PEOPLE SAY THEY WILL VOTE ‘NO AWARD’ RATHER THAN GIVE THE WORKS A FAIR SHAKE (mostly from the right-leaning SF/F genre crowd).

Two, a particular individual has recently flounced his way out of SFWA, with attendant cane-shakery about the “lunatic left” and “thoughtpolice”. And, apparently, a lot of attempt at revisionism about prior rounds of drama, thoroughly debunked over on Radish Reviews and also by Foz Meadows.

Three, as a corollary to these two particular rounds of drama, I’ve seen a resurgence in people insisting that if you don’t adore the works of Robert Heinlein, you cannot possibly be a true science fiction fan.

I’ve been too wearied by the aforementioned medical annoyance to give more than a token facepalm to either of these rounds of drama. But I think it’s worth saying yet again that:

One, if it bothers you when people call you a bigot, there’s an easy solution to this problem. Which is, don’t be a bigot. I.e., don’t spew bigoted bullshit, and don’t do screamingly bigoted things. This is not rocket science, but it is apparently difficult for some folks who love them some rocket science in their fiction.

Two, you are not being censored or oppressed if you spew bigoted bullshit and other people then call you a bigot. If you insist you are being censored or oppressed, and you cannot in fact provide proof that your civil rights are being impinged upon, you’re not only being a bigot, you’re also being an asshole.

Three, if you’re going around claiming that “only people who like the same exact stuff I like are true science fiction fans” or “only people who write a narrow and specific set of stories that happen to line up exactly with my personal political and/or religious beliefs are true science fiction writers”–really, in general, if you’re yelling about how “these other people over here are DOING THEIR FANDOM WRONG”–you know what you’re being? If you said “an asshole”, then DING DING DING WINNAH.

There’s been way too much divisiveness like this in SF/Fdom lately, and I’m really, really sick of it. The whole Fake Geek Girl thing, for example. Or “my subgenre is better than your subgenre”. Or the ongoing LALALALALA WE CAN’T HEAR YOU every time women, or people of color, or queer people of any stripe, or people of non-Christian religions or lack thereof, etc., etc., etc.,–every time anyone in those groups tries to say “Hey! We’d like to join in, too!” And they keep getting shut down.

And then as a bonus, now we get told that if you don’t adore one specific Dead White Male Author you’re not a real SF/F fan? Seriously?

Nope. Sorry. You don’t get to tell me which authors I get to adore and which ones I don’t. You don’t get to appoint yourselves the gatekeepers of my SF/F fandom, and you don’t get to judge the validity of my affection for the genre.

Though I’m tellin’ ya, Internets, with how this kind of drama keeps going around and around and around and around ad infinitum, it makes me want to go read a good mystery novel instead.

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