Author Topic: Laying some cards out  (Read 3118 times)

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Offline PaladinCecil79

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Laying some cards out
« on: August 23, 2015, 04:39:27 am »
I have a decision I recently made regarding attending Kumoricon this year that I wanted to share.
Note: I have a lot to say regarding this subject, so there's going to be a wall of text. Some of this content is going to have a lot of detail as well. I'm not trying to ramble too much, I just have a lot I want to get off my back.

It wasn't an easy choice and I put a lot of thought into it, but I feel that I'm better off not coming.
I'm really sorry for those who were looking forward to my panels, and I've never wanted to go an entire year without attending a convention, but I've been going through a lot of stress these past few months and I feel that I'd be better off being away from local cons for at least a little while.
I know that I had planned to be here for months and was really looking forward to coming, but the excitement I had unexpectedly turned to stress.
During the year, I've been experiencing my share of unfair and narrow-minded criticism from other otaku on Facebook.
I won't give any individual names, but earlier in the year when Sakura Con announced Vic Mignogna as a guest, some of the members of the Unofficial Sakura Con Group complained about it, saying that he was perverted and insensitive, and even had the nerve to refer to him as a female sex organ.
I've met Vic at conventions a lot over the past nine years and have developed a good friendship with him and have been a member of his fan club for almost that long, and I can tell you that he's not the person these people say that he is.
Some of them expressed outrage over him holding Sunday services at cons and one even claimed that they would refuse to attend a con where that happened, when the real solution was to just do something else. I explained that there are Christians who attend cons who like that stuff, and that if there's an event going on that you don't like, don't go to it.
I also said when you're looking forward to a convention, you shouldn't let your entire weekend be ruined by one small event that you don't enjoy.
When I said that, the individual chose to be discriminating, saying that if Christians want to attend Sunday services, they shouldn't go to cons.
If anyone who is non-Christian is reading this, I'm not demanding that you repent or anything. I just believe that when anime fans meet other otaku, they should be respectful to each other, even if they don't follow the same religion, and if you meet someone whose religious views are different from yours, don't hate them for it and especially don't discriminate.

They were also complaining about him being a pervert and a pedophile, saying that many others claim have been sexually harassed by him.
I was even given a link to a Tumblr page that had a long list horror stories others claimed to have had.
I read them all and if anyone else has read themselves, let me tell you that they should not be taken seriously. It blew my mind how absurd these stories were and at least one person claimed to have slept with him.

The reason why these stories should not be taken seriously is because none of them have been proven. And Vic's fan club, the Risembool Rangers, is run by over a dozen people who know him very well (along with the thousands of club members). If there was a shred of truth to any of these sexual harassment claims, they would know all about them and the club would've been shut down long ago.
If anyone here has heard some of these so-called claims that other fans said they've had, don't take them seriously.
When someone becomes popular, it's common for them to have their share of haters, and some of those people are going to go to great lengths to get others to see it their way (Greg Ayres and Monica Rial have gotten this treatment as well and Monica even says that people have said mean things to her about her voice).
If anyone reading this doesn't like Vic, and it's because of these stories that others have claimed, you really shouldn't buy into this kind of stuff so easily. It's not much different from believing things the media has said about Michael Jackson over the years.

In recent months, I also got some harsh criticism for my views on the court rulings on June 26th.
I'm not in any way a bigot and agree that homosexuality is a sensitive subject. It's not a topic that I discuss on a frequent basis, but when I do, like any other sensitive topic, I do so in a careful and fair way that doesn't rule out any side.

After the court rulings happened, I posted my views on my Facebook page. I felt that I had a good perspective on it and had gotten some positive feedback from family members, which motivated me to share it with others.
I posted at another voice actor's page (who I'll keep anonymous) a message about it, requesting people to read and ended up getting blocked.
It really frustrated me because I met him for the first time last year and we really hit it off. He was just a great guy to talk to with a wonderful sense of humor who loved interacting with fans, and I couldn't understand why he'd act the way he did.

After this happened, I posted a topic at the Unofficial Sakura Con Group asking if others have frustrating moments with con guests before. When I posted it, I mentioned how the same VA blocked me for what I posted on his page.
The first few responses I got were all right, but then one person there mentioned the message on my page and several other people acted like I was supporting black slavery, going as far as saying I was homophobic and wasn't entitled to anything.

I'm not saying that most people attending Kumoricon will see me as their enemy and I've gotten to know a lot of great people there, but because of the recent incidents, I've gotten worried that I might encounter some of these Facebook names in person and I don't want the issues I've had with them to get any worse.
Going a whole year without attending a con will be unusual and I will miss seeing a lot of you, but I feel that this is something I should be careful about.
Although I don't know when, I plan to eventually come back when I feel the time is right, but temporarily I'm going to stick with cons that are out of state.

I'm not asking anyone to feel sorry for me, and I admit that I'm not perfect and have made my share of mistakes in the past. But I want anyone who's reading this to know that nothing I say or do is intended to anger anyone of make them feel harmed, so if there's some stuff I said that you don't agree on, please don't hate me for it.
« Last Edit: August 23, 2015, 12:57:13 pm by PaladinCecil79 »

Offline riku-chan

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Re: Laying some cards out
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2015, 08:49:55 am »
I hope that your stress will be able to melt away paladin-san, and even though I won't get to see you or go to your awesome panel's this year I hope to be able to see and go to your panels next year! :)
~~Kumoricon 2018~~

Offline Valkyrie542

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Re: Laying some cards out
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2015, 10:39:21 am »
I think I've been in a similar situation like yours, so I might be able to relate.

The internet - especially tumblr, sorry, but it is true - can be full of sensitive news/information/opinions and there is quite a bit of drama, and I agree, it does cause a lot of stress. It's really upsetting...

I don't know what else you're going through that's attributing to your stress and choice to avoid kcon, but I will say that, personally, it helps me to try to take that stuff in small doses. And I try to avoid the kind of passionate people that you mentioned - people are set in their opinions and won't change, if it's harmful to talk with them, then we are just not compatible and it's a waste of time.

If you feel that you'd be better off not going, that's perfectly okay, your well-being is important!
-Kumoricon Cosplays-

Coming Soon!!

Message me if you're doing similar cosplays and want to meet for photos!

Offline superjaz

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Re: Laying some cards out
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2015, 07:47:05 pm »
It's okay not go to con.  Internet negativity is pretty heavy these days.  I know when a long term attendee, it can almost feel guilty not going,  like missing a family reunion.  Esp when putting on panels that people enjoy. 
  But *speaking as someone whose family left the reunion early for the best interests of my family* you have to do what's best for your health (physical mental, spiritual),  even if it's not what you want to do (vs should).  It takes time to heal from turmoil.

« Last Edit: August 26, 2015, 11:15:06 pm by superjaz »
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Offline PaladinCecil79

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Re: Laying some cards out
« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2015, 05:02:26 am »
Thanks guys. I appreciate it.
Since making my choice, I've felt better about it.
But although I won't be attending, I'll still post some topics about this year's con at the forum and give some scheduling and guest feedback as well.