Thoughts on SJW’s and Mankind Divided (copied from Reddit)
Okay, I gotta get this off my chest. I can’t be the only person completely utterly nonplussed the Internet Social Justice League has turned its sights on the Deus Ex series.
Earlier games in the series came out before the SJW’s really manifested themselves as a force in gaming. Human Revolution was released on the cusp of that manifestation — but early enough (i.e. after Bioshock) that “commentary” on politics and social commentary in gaming was a thing. But…its central theme was class conflict, and we’ve seen which side SJW’s take when it comes to class conflict, time and again (no matter what they say, standing up for poor people they ain’t).
So, enter Mankind Divided, which from what we’ve seen is a fairly straight forward commentary on segregation, apartheid, and systemic oppression. Which has prompted the breakout of the torches and pitchforks, for no apparent goddamn reason at all. It seems, so far, like an even-handed, fair but respectful, portrayal of those phenomena in a video game. At least, from the promo material we’ve seen so far, it definitively isn’t being portrayed as a societal good — least of all to people who played Human Revolution, or have working knowledge of the Deus Ex universe as a whole, and know the background for the in-universe events.
They sure as hell don’t seem to take issue with District 9, of all pieces of science-fiction which feature social commentary on apartheid. And, that is a film that presents apartheid in an entirely whitewashed fashion, with the cast and creative crew being predominantly white with freaking aliens as the metaphor for black South Africans, has as the leading characters one ginormous “great white hope”/”mighty whitey” main character and a metaphor for Jesus Christ, and actually presents the state of apartheid in the film as at least partly justified.
You’d think that if they were to break out the torches and pitchforks over Mankind Divided’s apartheid themes, they’d want Neill Blomkamp publicly drawn and quartered…but nope. So, there must be something else about this game that has their panties in a bunch, right?
Deus Ex’s overarching theme as a game franchise and intellectual property is about the evils of the politico-media complex. It was there in the original, it’s been there through the entire series, and hit its apex in Human Revolution. The central thesis of the series is that in the era of global, digital communication, bad-faith actors seek to control the human population by undermining freedom of thought itself, through media manipulation. It’s vidya’s take on works like 1984 and Fahrenheit 451.
[Fahrenheit 451 getting special mention here, since it was that world’s equivalent of SJW’s starting the book-burning craze by protesting “objectionable content”.]
Might Mankind Divided be hitting a little close to home on this one, with “mechanical apartheid” simply being a convenient excuse to run-down the game?