I’ve recently analyzed my love-hate relationship with the gaming community. It is a place I feel most at home, yet so on the outside at the same time. When I am playing Overwatch with a good sized team and we rake through matches and we are laughing and encouraging each other and working as a team to accomplish something, I don’t want to be anywhere else. But there are moments where I wish I could crawl out of my skin.
There are words I don’t like. And I understand that people are going to use them. I understand that people don’t mean the same thing when they say them, but I am an advocate for “careful vocabulary”. What I mean by that is really just being conscientious of those around you and using a more neutral diction.
I am a sailor when it comes to video games. I will let out almost every swear word I can when someone one shots me as I unload a clip on them. But I don’t get specific, and I think that is where I get uncomfortable.
B*tch, C*nt, F*ggot, N*gger, P*ssy, C*ck sucker.
Those are the ones I hear the most often. Derogatory terms towards females, homosexuals, and black people. Three groups of people who have been having slander spewed in their face for quite some time, and are now finally able to tell people to shut the hell up and respect them. With consequence still, but our voices are mattering.
[I also think it’s weird I never hear someone say p*ssy licker as an insult. As if being a woman or a man and performing sexual acts with a man is degrading, however, it isn’t the other way around towards the woman. I may sound super feminazi but look how much I’m about to care about that.]
I understand that not liking these words is giving them power. You don’t have to tell me that. I’m not gay, so I don’t get personally offended when someone yells you stupid little f*ggot in the lobby. I just get upset that that language is being used so fluently. I get upset that someone might get stung by the word. It won’t kill them. They might not even think about it ever again, but why even put someone in that discomfort in the first place? Real life discomfort brought through a video game? Come on. Where has the creativity gone in our sentences? Why is this a normalized conversation we should all just be okay with?
I’m about to be really unfun to play with. Because if I don’t have to take it in person anymore, I’m shutting that ish down online as well. Sorry, not sorry. If I can stop saying things I used to think were okay as a little white suburbian princess, y’all can grow up, too.