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Explaining myself.



The reason I asked to delete my account was because I feared I lost all my likeability with the previous blog entry and didn't want to be a burden on this forum any more. I'm not a racist, but I guess I should not make puns of that stuff.

So here is an edited version of my Atari 2600 game. I spent an hour changing it to something more acceptible to everyone.


This is Bob. He's a bird. I need to make a better bird sprite.


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Posted (edited)

You’re cool man.  We all make mistakes.  No big deal. Live and learn and keep making awesome games.  I can tell you do it for the enjoyment of the experience and I think that’s really awesome.

Edited by RH
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Nah don’t run away you’ve got to double and triple down until you get banned.  That is the way.  That would be the most entertaining course of action to me.  Sega reference before you dip.  

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Hey man, no sweat.  We all screw up.  I doubt it was malicious in its intent, as I'm sure others would feel the same.  The mistake isn't gonna hurt nearly as much as the response to it. By changing the title and anything that would be construed in a way that indicated not understanding the issue, it allows it to be an embarrassing blemish and not an indication of a negative personality trait that would actually damage your reputation.

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I’m thankful you responded without being defensive. I hope you take this opportunity for introspection to understand why you thought that was an appropriate joke to make given the pain that Jim Crow has had on the black community.

That said, I’m disappointed you haven’t actually apologized for it. All you’ve said is you were worried about your likeability, and claimed you aren’t racist so you guess you shouldn’t make jokes like that. As a person of color, that just doesn’t cut it, because “I’m not a racist” are just words that anyone can say. You haven’t proven you aren’t racist, you’ve proven you respond when you get in trouble.

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I don't want to engage in dredging up drama again, but because I think there is room for some actual learning here - he originally shared a tidbit about a game he was working on called "Jim Crow" featuring a black Crow as the character.

It was very quickly pointed out that this was incredibly insensitive and offensive, and thus he has now changed it.

While that is good (that it was changed), I think part of Scrobins' frustration (and I understand and agree) is that this post explains why he almost left, but doesn't really acknowledge or apologize for the action, or show any real understanding of why it was really insensitive.

@Gamegearguy - I'm going to try to mention this in good faith with constructive intentions --  You can't really claim complete ignorance about the title, because you even commented about how maybe you should call it "Tim" instead.  I'm honestly a bit baffled why you would choose to make this particular 'pun' for a video game.  It's not really a 'funny' subject and there is a lot of history regarding Jim Crow that is painful for a lot of people.  So yeah, it was wrong.  Instead of defending yourself as "I'm not racist," think about why you would make a game with that title in the first place, and think about why you got the reaction you did, and think about acknowledging that at best it was racially insensitive. 

People focus too much on whether they are (viewed as) a "racist" or not, when really, people should be reflecting more about why they say the things they do or think the things they think, or perceive things in a certain way.  And then there is room for improvement there.  Racism is not a binary thing because all of us allow bias and stereotypes to frame how we view the world.  It is about challenging ourselves and recognizing that when it happens.  This isn't a public argument about whether you "are racist."  But what you did - the action - was hurtful and offensive.  So think about that and how you can use this experience to not do so in the future, and to consider these things when you interact with others - online, IRL, everywhere.

As for other onlookers, refrain with jumping in here and trolling or arguing - I take this situation and some of the concerns expressed to me very seriously, so I wanted to take a moment to really type this out, explain, and leave it there for gamegear (and maybe others) to reflect on.

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Please don't take this as an attack or anything like that, but I feel like speculating a bit on things.  Maybe @Gamegearguy can chime in about whether or not I'm on the right train here.

Basically, a quick glance through his history is showing me that his last few projects maybe haven't garnered the interest he was hoping for.  My thinking is that he's heard the term "Jim Crow" before, but maybe didn't know what it is or why it's offensive to people.  Controversy creates headlines, so maybe he just thought it would draw some eyes his way, not realizing just how inappropriate it was.  Then when faced with it, he panicked and tried to get as far away as possible from it. 

As for apologizing for it, I think it's at the point that it may be too late, as if he issues a public apology it could seem insincere (as it would come following public outcry and not of his own volition), but without it he seems like he hasn't learned from it.  I personally think he should still do it, whether in an open post or privately to @Scrobins directly (honestly probably a better option anyway imo). 

As an aside, I wonder if it's less about the name itself and more about the almost throwaway usage of the term that makes it offensive.  Like, if Jim the Crow were fighting the evil Swan Empire to free the other birds from their oppressive overlords, would it have been more forgivable due to the content of the game itself, rather than just a game being named with an ill-advised pun?  I don't know if that would justify naming the actual game by that name, but the character name could have worked in the right context.  Being as white as fresh fallen snow, I'm not qualified to answer that myself, but I think it'd be an interesting conversation to have nonetheless.

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No, I didn't choose it to get views. The problem is I just didn't know how offensive it was. I apologize now, even if it does seem too late or insincere, but it really is sincere. I'm also sorry that I'm stupid and didn't study in history class. I'm just an idiot, that's all.

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