Monday, October 7, 2013

Who gets offended by medieval farming?

If you haven't seen it yet you need to check out Jon Hochschartner's piece at "The Legend of Zelda” is classist, sexist and racist. This is a great white shark in a sea of sheltered, oversensitive, grumpy, perpetually-grieving guppies.

The article's existence on a major news website obviously followed a horrible series of errors in the editorial process. Somehow, it even made it into the Salon Twitter feed.

To post a point by point response would be like debunking the plot of a dream. The writer aimlessly drifts from poorly cribbing Anita Sarkeesian's shtick to nonsensical pearl-clutching because the criticism of greedy rich people didn't cut deep enough to quoting Karl Marx to complaining when one of several non-white races is cast as villains to, well, this:

From the perspective of domesticated animals, agriculture of the past was a gentler prospect than the modern, factory-farm system. But for non-humans the pre-industrial farm, as symbolized by Lon Lon Ranch, was still a place of exploitation and violence, where their lives, in general, would be significantly shorter and more circumscribed than those of their nearest, wild cousins. 
But in the game, domestication is portrayed as a mutually beneficial, voluntary arrangement. The anthropomorphized cows of Hyrule speak to Link, literally saying, “Have some of my refreshing and nutritious milk!” Of course depicting a relationship as anything like symbiotic when one party kills and eats the other, as well as the latter’s children, would be laughable if it weren’t so appalling.

Not only is Hochschartner appalled, but he expects the reader to be as well. Hey guys, the happy cartoony cow upset you too, right? Right? Holstein solidarity!

It's obvious from the context that Hochschartner is upset that this go-lucky milk cow isn't plotting to overthrow the farm. I think he read the first three pages of Animal Farm, closed the book, and assumed everything turned out well and wishes Link could visit that perfect little place.

The entire article reads like a rushed essay from a C-average high school student, a student who didn't go to the prom or shower regularly.

We are fortunate that Hochschartner is cursed with an unusual name, as we can easily find his other writings, including grunt work at a regional newspaper, another whiny Salon piece complaining that Grand Theft Auto publisher Rockstar Games dared to portray corruption in a socialist revolution, Marxist drivel and Marxist drivel directed at vegans.

Probably the most disturbing thing here is not that Salon published a low-quality, sophomoric piece, but that the company presented the ramblings of a social misfit Marxist as if he possess a legitimate place in modern society.

Last week I came across a piece titled Datings tips for the feminist man that started with:

You’re a straight monogamous cismale who identifies as a leftie. Maybe you’re a Marxist or a socialist; maybe you’re an anarchist. You respect women. You would never act like a player. You fall in love with strong, smart, feminist women. You believe that our movements are stronger if they include everyone.

Excuse me people, this is the real world, not a university campus. What's with the lack of shame and ostracism for these fringe beliefs? What's with all the... acceptance. Mentally, being a Marxist in the 21st century is akin to being a Klansman, a flat-Earther, an AIDS denier or a Westboro Baptist Church member. These people need to be pushed into the shadows and ignored, not given a platform and treated with anything other than contempt.

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