When Do I Get My Frigging Spells?
Recently I spent a great deal of time reading about the attacks on gaming that have come over the years. Role-playing has been vilified as both 'evil' and 'Satanic', and is supposedly the cause of many suicides. All of us know that gaming frequently garners a lot of negative attention, but it would seem that few of us know specifically who is instigating these attacks.
Recently I spent a great deal of time reading about the attacks on gaming that have come over the years. Role-playing has been vilified as both 'evil' and 'Satanic', and is supposedly the cause of many suicides. All of us know that gaming frequently garners a lot of negative attention, but it would seem that few of us know specifically who is instigating these attacks. Nor do many of us seem to know that there are actually organizations and individuals out there defending us. I know that last week I didn't know either.
When I read about BADD in particular I was horrified. Its history, in a nutshell, is that Pat Pulling's son Bink committed suicide using her loaded gun. He was depressed and showed many signs of impending suicide, but Pat chose to ignore them and found a better source to blame than herself. It would seem that Bink's gifted and talented teacher used D&D as a way to teach his students, and that Pat became aware of this.
She claimed that the teacher had cast a curse on her son, and that was his reason for suicide. Never mind that all the other participants in the game denied this vehemently. Never mind the fact that Bink had many other problems. Never mind the fact that her case against the teacher was laughed out of court. Pat was convinced that D&D caused her son's death, and she decided that someone had to pay.
So Pat formed Bothered About Dungeons and Dragons. The organization's stated goal was to educate people about the inherent dangers (to their souls) of role-playing. This included such tactics as falsifying news articles, lying in court, and other illegal BS. All done to protect us from the evil that is role-playing. I could go on and on about all of the messed up things that this woman has done, and how they have caused grief for thousands of people like us. But fortunately I don't have to. Michael Stackpole already did.
For those not familiar with Mr. Stackpole - he almost single-handedly created the Battletech universe with his novels, wrote numerous Star Wars novels, and created game supplements for about every game out there. In 1990 he was commissioned by GAMA to create the Pulling report. I highly recommend reading it as it provides many of the facts that I am using in this article.
In it he debunks nearly all of Pat Pulling's claims, and exposes her for the fraud that she is. The article also details a number of the very frightening activities she was involved in. I shudder when I think of the 'Satanic Gamer' profile that she distributed to thousands of police officers over the years.
Of course, even though BADD is a thing of the past, the damage has been done. A great many people now think of role-playing as evil, and this stereotype is being constantly reinforced by the fundamentalist Christians. Here are some articles if you want to see what they are saying about us:
- Straight Talk On D&D
- Dark Dungeons (my favorite)
- D&D - Concerns for the Christian
- The FAQ Against AD&D
There are others I have run across, but these are my favorites. I love the overall message. I mean, using the logic I see in these articles almost anyone or anything can be proven to be Satanic. If you don't believe them, then you are either naive or part of the global conspiracy.
My overall problem, and the point of this essay, is that I am tired of catching flak for my hobbies. But at the same time I understand why fundamentalist Christians and the media at large say what they do about gaming. They say the same thing about rock music, violent movies, and many other aspects of pop culture. Blame these things, because it couldn't possibly be a lack of good parenting. Why take responsibility for yourself or your family when there are such convenient sources to blame?
They are welcome to their beliefs. But I do wish that they would stop poisoning others against us, and I wish that they would learn to keep their opinions to themselves. I will leave you with these questions. If these activities are so evil, and D&D is a recruiting tool for a world spanning Satanic organization, then where is any proof of its existence?
Far more importantly, if this cult exists, and D&D is a gateway to Black Magic... when do I get my frigging spells? I can't wait for Charm Boss and Win Lottery...