Why, skrimconfessionss? Just why?
Over the past 24 hours there have been a slew of pro-Stormcloak submissions to the “Skyrim Confessions” page. Normally such a stance would be seen as welcome and long overdue, but the nature of these posts have not only been offensive and prejudicial, but extremely inaccurate to every argument or analysis of the civil war that I’ve ever come across.
The war in Skyrim has very little to do with the American Revolution beyond the “rebellion” stereotype, but that isn’t the point. The point is that this confession being entirely inaccurate seems to paint Stormcloak supporters in a very negative and ignorant light. While there are a handful of players who may think this, the entire group’s reputation suffers because of things like this.
This is straight up racism apologia, but using a completely wrong base argument. Ulfric does not hate elves or Argonians, and not every individual of these races (ignoring the “elf” lumping) displays the uncooperative and isolationist attitudes shown by the Dunmer of Windhelm. It’s basically setting up a completely irrational straw man, but then supporting it from the perspective of a true bigot with a defeatist argument. Show me a Stormcloak who thinks this way.
Ulfric does not hate elves. He hates the Thalmor, which are comprised almost exclusively of high elves, but does not hate the entire race or the races that fall under the category of elf at all. More defeatism. In any case, Ulfric is not “allowing” the Dunmer in his city. Their refuge was decreed by the high king some 200 years ago, and they were there before Ulfric was even born.
I also need to address the “ya der refujeez but dey gotta getto!” counterargument to the hospitality of the Nords. The Gray Quarter was a normal part of the city known as the Snow Quarter prior to the Dunmer’s arrival, and only became a slum due to their negligence and lack of effort to work at bettering any aspect of their lives. I’ll even entertain the ridiculous notion that it was a ghetto before they arrived - is that really so horrible, given their ability to stay there for free, with no taxes owed to any Jarl, and retain their foreign (arguably illegal) religious customs? Even then, if they had free reign and total control over a part of the city essentially given to them as a sort of New Morrowind, is it entirely out of their control to fix the place up in the 200 years they’ve been there?
"Nords are racist, we live in a ghetto."
"Was it a ghetto when you got here?"
"No, it was a clean and well-maintained part of the city."
Everything was fine before you showed up. It’s your fault.
"Nords are racist, we live in a ghetto."
"Was it a ghetto when you got here?"
"Yes, it looked exactly like this."
You haven’t made an effort to change anything. It’s your fault.
That’s not racism apologia. It’s just common sense.
This one isn’t as bad as the others, but has two major flaws. The first is that it supports the idea that “Skyrim belongs to the Nords” is an ethnocentric statement, when it is obviously a political one. Anyone who knows what the civil war is about should realize this, especially with the companion battle cry “Death to the empire!”
Secondly, while acknowledging that the empire is more racist than the Stormcloaks, it fails to back this up with anything but game mechanics. If they presented a brief analysis of what imperialism actually is and shown the very prejudicial comments General Tullius makes, it would have been a much more relevant argument.
Now let’s quickly look at a question someone posed the blog and how it was ludicrously answered.
theponybro:can you guys use some common sense with all these ridiculos stormcloak submissions i mean im an imperial but ive heard a lot of good arguements from stormcloaks and none of them say any of the stupid things your past few posts have said
While not the most literate of posts, I wholeheartedly agree. Even Imperials have started to realize that no one actually thinks the way this person does (assuming it is in fact one person, as the queuing seems to indicate). The response:
Common sense? We don’t delete confessions or choose not to post them if they sound “stupid” to someone or in turn favour those that would seem like “good arguments”. We want everyone to be able to express an opinion, as long as it’s in an unoffensive way. If you can clearly point out reasons why a confessions is offensive, we will consider removing it, otherwise they stay on the blog. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and I personally think calling someone’s opinion “ridiculous” or “stupid” is just rude and arrogant. If you don’t agree or think they are wrong because they don’t have all the information related to form an opinion, comment on the posts and tell your opinion or educate, there’s no need for bashing others. You are entitled to your opinion just as they are entitled to theirs. We don’t choose sides on this blog.
Yes, you are very clearly choosing sides. When you make the conscious decision to publish a submission that is very clearly steeped in ignorance and will make anyone associated with a certain group look like a moron, you’re doing nothing but perpetuating the stereotypes associated with them. Let’s look at what another person said in response:
// painfruit said: I don’t care if you want to stay out of it, but don’t get on your high horse about “bashing others” when someone takes issue with the kind of disgusting racism we’ve seen in confessions today. That is not the moral high ground.
One thousand percent correct. Taking this stance is utter hypocrisy. As demonstrated further:
I feel the need to address this: I get annoyed when people bash others opinions without stating why they think they are wrong. In this case the person did not say they objected the confessions for being racist, but for being stupid and ridiculous without stating why. If he/she would have objected them for being racist and explained in a civilized manner why they think they are then that would be a whole other matter. But they clearly in my opinion objected them in a different manner that to me just seemed like bashing other people’s opinons because they differ from his/her views and is not something they want to see.
This is the point where all logic leaves the room and the universe begins crumbling due to the sheer stupidity. Katrin’s outright display of holy tolerance for racism apologists and disregard for even-handed arguments isn’t nearly as bad as the complete lack of rational thought and accountability. Is it really necessary for people to take a stand and make a formal argument against the encouragement of racism? Isn’t that one of those things people consider a crime against humanity that doesn’t need any justification for being against? Give me a reason to think you don’t fully support them, because that’s exactly what you’re implying.
This is essentially how the conversation went down, though obviously the first line is not in the words of those who run the blog themselves.
"I hate black people."
"Dude, what the hell is wrong with you?"
"There’s no need for that tone. If you want to call me out, do so in a rational manner and present an applicable argument. You don’t have to bash someone’s opinion just because you disagree with them."
If you’re arguing about candy flavors, television shows, or sports teams, fine. Demanding fair treatment after presenting yourself or someone you support as openly racist and bigoted for no reason is literally retarded.
A few weeks ago, before submitting my “Stormcloaks aren’t racist” confession that got oh so much love from the community, I actually sent a similar question to the moderators. I don’t remember the exact wording, but it questioned why the vast majority of civil war posts favored the empire for legitimate reasons but bashed the rebellion for “racism” dogma. A more specific problem was that, when a pro-Stormcloak confession did arise every month or so, it was focused on the singular honor of one side rather than making an object comparison. Most Imperial confessions, however, vilified the rebellion with aggressive and unnecessary claims of bigotry, hatred, and conspiracy with the Thalmor, putting more emphasis on slander rather than making a case for the widely-viewed pragmatism of a united empire.
I wouldn’t say the number of supporters on each side is even enough to mean there should be balance within the confession material, but a lot of fault falls on the shoulders of those running the blog when the majority of confessions are like this. They claim to not pick sides and present every argument justly, but given the history of what this blog posts and the display we’ve seen in the past day or so, this simply isn’t true. To make matters worse, my question never got answered. Given the way both questions earlier were approached, maybe that’s for the best.
In the face of all this, I’m convinced that skyrimconfessionss is a full-fledged Imperial blog that either filters through confessions for ones supporting their agenda (while letting an occasional rational one like mine slip through to avoid suspicious), or a straight up propaganda page that is creating fake confessions to make the side they oppose look like imbeciles. Their refusal to answer a perfectly reasonable question about their intentions, along with answering other legitimate questions with hypocritical and self-righteous apologetics, has left me with very little reason to think otherwise.
My only suggestion? A name change. “Skyrim Confessions” seems to indicate things people do that are unusual or admissions of unique play styles and viewpoints. Your blog is no longer this. Here’s a a more appropriate title:
"Ill-conceived, confrontational, and ignorant hogwash spoken by people who don’t know anything about the lore of a three year old game, mixed with racist straw man arguments that the inclusive entirety of our opponents agree with, carefully weeded through to appear appeasing to both sides while avoiding any semblance of fairness, balance, or rationality, garnished with holier-than-thou hypocrisy upon being called out."
Where’s colonelkillabee when the world needs him?