Saturday, February 17, 2018

Top 10 Games of 2017

(I know, I know, I'm a month and a half late.)

NOTE: Per usual, this list refers to the top 10 games I played in 2017, not games released in 2017.

10) Cuphead
9) Doom
8) Firewatch
7) The Turing Test
6) South Park: The Fractured But Whole
5) Gone Home
4) Batman: The Telltale Series
3) Super Mario Odyssey
2) Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus
1) Zelda BOTW

(I do not have a review yet for Breath of the Wild, as the game is such a cultural milestone and personal favorite that any review that did the game justice would need to be much more in depth than I typically go. So I will write that sometime in the coming weeks, as I am currently on my second playthrough of the game.)

Previous Winners:  [2016]

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

17 killed in Florida school shooting

Obligatory "Fuck the NRA and every limp-dick dumbass piece of shit who supports them."

Obligatory "No, seriously, American pro-gun arguments are so unbelievably, incomprehensibly fucking stupid that side-effects of hearing them may include nosebleeds, severe nausea, and rage-blackouts."

Monday, February 12, 2018

Favorite 2018 Super Bowl Commercials!

(Note: These are all just my own personal rankings, obviously.)

Tide killed it this year. I mean, they killed of several stupid people via the Tide Pod Challenge, but they also had the best Super Bowl ad campaign with their series of parodies:

More: Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

In second place was Jeff Goldblum's Jeep ad:

Third place went to another Jeep ad - simple, but darn effective:

Bud Light is in fourth place, with this pair of commercials:

The Doritos / Mt Dew rap battle between Peter Dinklage and Morgan Freeman was in fifth (I sure can't wait to try the new Sprite-flavored Mountain Dew!):

Sappy, sentimental ads are usually more grating than they are impressive, but this Toyota ad was still good enough to take the sixth spot:

Same goes for the Hyundai 'Hope Detector' ad in seventh:

I liked how clever the Intuit "skip ad" ad was, so I'm giving it #8:

Groupon's ad for supporting local businesses comes in at #9, because fuck the rich:

And finally, Toyota's "One Team" ad, because it's a nice thought:


I lol'd at Wendy's "iceberg/Titanic" dig
The "Avocado Dome" ad was amusing
Trailer for Avengers 3
Trailer for the Han Solo movie


Using MLK to sell Dodge Ram trucks? Really?
There is no context in which Dr. Oz does not suck.
This Budweiser ad is almost good, except for the part where they spent millions of dollars to brag about donating what probably amounted to a fraction of that.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Game Review: Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus

This, is it something else. This game answers the question "What would Schindler's List be like if it were directed by Quentin Tarantino?"

Wolfenstein II's story is constantly pinging back and forth between being hilarious, bizarre, poignant, touching, infuriating, triumphant, cathartic, and hilarious. (Hilarious deserves to be in there twice.) The action and gameplay take a back seat, in my opinion, to said story, which is incredibly wild and proudly leans into its own craziness. It mixes an (admittedly unrealistic) retro/sci-fi Nazi-dominated American setting with characters that are believable, grounded, and easy to get invested in.

One character in particular caught my attention: Sigrun Engel. She is the daughter of the game's sadistic, psychopathic antagonist, who very early in the game joins the player's anti-Nazi resistance movement. Prior to the game's story, she spent most of her life being insulted and emotionally abused by the villain, and even after joining the player's side she is constantly being insulted and metaphorically spat on by other resistance members because of her Nazi background. BJ Blazkowicz (the player's character), however, treats her with kindness, and that can lead to very touching moments not just in cutscenes, but also through player-triggered moments in-game. Specifically, this includes what was not only my absolute favorite moment in this game, but also my second-favorite gaming moment in 2017, period (the first being when Link finally storms Hyrule Castle in BOTW).

(From 12:57 to 14:15 in this video):

Here's what happens: the player walks into the mess hall of the resistance's base and sees a group of resistance members sitting together for a meal. Sigrun comes to sit down beside them to eat, and the group silently stands up and moves to a different table out of antipathy toward Sigrun. Sigrun sits silently, clearly in deep sadness. It's at this point where I wanted to be able to cheer her up, so I moved to where she was sitting and tried pressing the action button – not actually expecting anything to happen. But, in a moment that took me COMPLETELY BY SURPRISE, something DOES happen: Sigrun and BJ strike up a short conversation, where she is grateful for his company. The resistance members, who respect BJ, notice this conversation from the table they moved to, and ask Sigrun how she knows him. She tells them that she helped BJ escape from the Nazis (which happened in one of the first levels). This impresses the resistance members, and they invite Sigrun over to their table to join in the game they're playing.

Holy shit.

I mean, really, HOLY SHIT!!!!!!!

I was not expecting the game to give me the opportunity to cheer Sigrun up like that. I can't recall very many other games, let alone action/shooter games, that give players the opportunity to affect characters like that.

That moment is just one of several that endeared me to Sigrun as a character, including an incredibly cathartic moment just before the game's final level where she not only firmly stands up for herself, but also unapologetically vents about being friend-zoned by another character. I don't want to spoil that cutscene too much, but it's so glorious that I actually cheered when it happened.

Sigrun is my favorite game character of 2017, and one of my all-time favorite video game characters, ever.

It's moments and details like this that put Wolfenstein II just one tiny notch above Super Mario Odyssey, in my opinion. It's not nearly enough to knock Breath of the Wild out of my top spot for Game of 2017, but it's firmly entrenched as one of my favorite FPS campaigns of all time.

One last piece of advice: since action is so far in the backseat compared with story, do yourself a favor and just play the game on its easiest difficulty. Yes, the description of that setting is insulting – but hey, if they wanted us to play on higher difficulty, then they should have made the gameplay as compelling as the story and characters are, right?

Overall: 10/10

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Game Reviews: Cuphead, The Turing Test, South Park: Fractured But Whole, Gone Home, Super Mario Odyssey

Man, haven't done one of these in a while...


I haven't finished this game, and I may never finish this game, but I'm going to review it anyway. The reason I may never finish it is that this game is stupidly, painfully difficult. Absurdly difficult games are a bit of a trend these days (thanks, Dark Souls and Super Meat Boy), but it's a trend I find more annoying than anything else. I play video games to relax, why the hell would I want them to have the opposite effect and send my stress levels skyrocketing? In fact, I actually abhor this trend to such an extent that it's the reason I wrote my first ever game review on this blog: I wanted to tear Retro Studios a new one for making Donkey Kong Country 4 so difficult that it wound up being almost no fun to play (and I LOVED the first 3 DKC games on the Super Nintendo).

The thing most people talk about when it comes to Cuphead is it's artwork, which is a near-perfect recreation of old 1930's cartoons, both visually and musically. The artwork is what drew me (and most people) to this game in the first place, only to later find that it's saddled with such brutal gameplay.

TLDR: This game is absolutely, stunningly gorgeous to look at and listen to, but this "HAHA LOOK HOW HARD OUR GAME IS" trend can pretty much just go fuck itself.

Overall: 5/10

The Turing Test

I only bought this game because (A) it was free on Games With Gold, and (B) almost every review compared it to Portal. Which is an apt comparison: it's a first-person puzzle-shooter (so basically the genre that Portal invented). You play as one of the last survivors on a futuristic space station set on one of the planets on the far outer reaches of the solar system. You're awoken by an AI companion, and you and the AI must work together to figure out what the hell is going on. To go into much more detail would be to spoil the story, and it should be noted that the story is a very strong element to this game. The middle of the game contains a massive twist that I didn't see coming at all, but wound up absolutely loving.

It's not nearly as close to flawless as Portal 2 was, but if you like the Portal games, I VERY VERY HIGHLY recommend trying this one.

Overall: 8/10

South Park: The Fractured But Whole

This game is the sequel to South Park: The Stick of Truth. Like that game, it's an RPG written and co-designed by Matt Stone and Trey Parker that spectacularly mirrors the delightful depravity (and aesthetics) of the TV show. The main characters have decided to role-play as super heroes instead of as fantasy characters this time, and the game often comes off as a parody of Marvel's Avenger movies.

Most of the game is as brilliant and fun as TSOT, and most of my gripes about it are relatively minor: the combat is slightly more complicated and takes a little more getting used to, the game is a few hours longer than the first one (i.e. a few hours longer than it needed to be), and the crafting system is largely superfluous where the item/inventory system of the first game would have been sufficient. The game's most gruesome and shocking moment ends up being a wasted opportunity for a joke, and the ending isn't nearly as strong (or hilarious) as TSOT's was.

Those minor gripes aside, the game is still a crapload of fun and absolutely hilarious.

Overall: 9/10

Gone Home

This was another free Game With Gold, and HOLY CRAP I was not expecting to love it as much as I did. This was the first game in the nascent "walking simulator" genre of games. Walking Simulators are games that have minimal gameplay elements, but generally a much more in-depth focus on story and on exploring highly detailed but relatively small areas. Gone Home has no real enemies and only a handful of puzzles to solve, but it emphasizes the touching story about a college-age daughter coming back to the US after spending some time overseas, and seeing her family's new house for the first time. As with The Turing Test, to go into much more detail would be too spoilery. But much of the story is gleaned from examining objects left lying around the house. If all this sounds dull to you, well, that's fair: I can't get any of my friends to try the game because of how minimalistic it is. But again, I found that the minimalism only helped to emphasize the story of what's going on with the family and the house, which is incredibly touching if you can see it through to the end. (C'mon, the game is only about 3 hours long anyway!)

Overall: 9/10

Super Mario Odyssey

Much like the two Mario Galaxy games and the Mario 3D World game that preceded it, and much like Zelda: Breath of the Wild which came out in early 2017, this game shows what Nintendo is really like when it's at the top of its game. This is the newest addition of the lineage of 3D Super Mario games (That lineage being: Super Mario 64, Super Mario Sunshine, Super Mario Galaxy, Super Mario Galaxy 2, and Super Mario 3D World).

And, much like Zelda BOTW, this game received critical acclaim, countless perfect scores from game reviewing sites, and countless Game of the Year nominations. All the creative energy of the Mario Galaxy games is still in place, on top of which they've added greatly improved graphics, dozens of optional costumes that Mario can wear (many of which reference dozens of different games in Mario's past), tons of throwbacks to the original Super Mario Bros for the NES, and a new "capture" mechanic that lets Mario possess and use the abilities of dozens of different creatures in the game, including almost all of the "classic" Mario enemies.

The game is separated into "Kingdoms" (stages) – and, new to the Mario series, one of these kingdoms is in an urban setting, called "New Donk City". This level is, in my opinion, easily the best level in the game – in no small part because of the many, many incredible references and callbacks to previous games, which are woven throughout the city in countless brilliant ways – some incredibly subtle, and others gloriously ostentatious.

It's not enough to knock 1996's Super Mario RPG out of my "all-time favorite Mario game" spot, but it's firmly planted in the upper echelon of Mario games.

Overall: 10/10

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

That time Paul Ryan actually bragged about his tax bill amounting to an extra $6 PER MONTH for public school employees

Believe it or not, neither the account nor the post are fake:

Ladies and Gentlemen: I give you Paul Ryan. One of the sleaziest, most corrupt, and most out-of-touch plutocratic weasels in the entire history of United States government.

He has since deleted his tweet.

Enjoy your breadcrumbs, Trump supporters.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

"But it’s who we are. It’s a blessing and a curse."

The leading portion of Andrew Sullivan's article in the New Yorker last Friday left me floored.

In his characteristically sober way, he goes through a litany of uncomfortable truths about gender that modern liberalism is struggling (and often failing) to adequately grapple with.

To see that someone I admire so much has come to so many of the same heterodox conclusions that my own life has led me to was a moment that was....difficult to put into words. It's like I'm an awkward piano chord, and this article was attempting to show people that there really are songs I sound good with.

Below is the article in its entirety. (I always just assume that publications like New Yorker don't give a shit about reposting like this. I always give the writers credit, and it's not like I blog for money or notoriety anyway.)

Anyway, I've highlighted in red what I consider to be the most resonant segments. There's a reason there are so many of them.

#MeToo and the Taboo Topic of Nature
By Andrew Sullivan

A long time ago now, I came rather abruptly face-to-face with what being a man means.

I don’t mean the gay thing. Figuring that out in the 1970s hadn’t been easy, but I’d never questioned my sex or my gender, whatever occasional taunts came my way. I mean the fact that, in the years of being HIV-positive, my testosterone levels had sunk, and I decided, given my lassitude, depression, and lack of sexual desire, to go on hormone replacement therapy to get me back in a healthy range for a 30-something male. It was a fascinating experience to witness maleness literally being injected into me, giving me in a sudden jump what had been there all along, and what I now saw and felt more vividly. You get a real sense of what being a man is from an experience like that, as the rush of energy, strength, clarity, ambition, drive, impatience and, above all, horniness overcame me every two weeks in the wake of my shot. It was intoxicating. I wrote about this a couple of decades ago, in an essay I called “The He Hormone.” The visceral experience opened my eyes to the sheer and immense natural difference between being a man and being a woman, and helped me understand better how nature is far more in control of us than we ever want to believe.

I mention this because in our increasingly heated debate about gender relations and the #MeToo movement, this natural reality — reflected in chromosomes and hormones no scientist disputes — is rarely discussed. It’s almost become taboo. You can spend a lifetime in gender studies and the subject will never come up. All differences between the sexes, we are now informed, are a function of the age-old oppression of women by men, of the “patriarchy” that enforces this subjugation, and of the power structures that mandate misogyny. All differences between the genders, we are told, are a function not of nature but of sexism. In fact, we are now informed by the latest generation of feminists, following the theories of Michel Foucault, that nature itself is a “social construction” designed by men to oppress women. It doesn’t actually exist. It’s merely another tool of male power and must be resisted.

This is, however, untrue. Even the newest generation of feminists concede this on the quiet. Although they will organize to shut down an entire magazine to prevent an airing of an alternative view of gender, they are not currently campaigning to shut down the Planet Earth series because it reveals that in almost every species, males and females behave differently — very differently — and there appears to be no “patriarchy” in place to bring this about at all. They know enough not to push their argument into places where it will seem to be, quite obviously, ridiculous. But it is strikingly obvious that for today’s progressives, humans are the sole species on this planet where gender differentiation has no clear basis in nature, science, evolution, or biology. This is where they are as hostile to Darwin as any creationist.

And this is stupid. The alternative explanation — that these core natural differences between men and women have been supplemented by centuries of conscious oppression — is staring us in the face. The fascinating conundrum is where one ends and the other begins. How much of this difference is natural and how much is social? That is the question. And the answer is a tricky one. Is the fact that the vast majority of construction workers are male and the huge majority of nurses are female a function of sexism or nature? Is male sexual aggression and horniness a function of patriarchy or testosterone? Is the fact that women now outnumber men among college graduates a function of reverse sexism or nature?

My suspicion is that it’s more about nature than about society, and one reason I believe this (apart from all the data) is because I’m gay. I live in a sexual and romantic world without women, where no patriarchy could definitionally exist, a subculture with hookups and relationships and marriages and every conceivable form of sexual desire that straight men and women experience as well. And you know what you find? That men behave no differently in sexual matters when there are no women involved at all. In fact, remove women, and you see male sexuality unleashed more fully, as men would naturally express it, if they could get away with it. It’s full of handsiness and groping and objectification and lust and aggression and passion and the ruthless pursuit of yet another conquest. And yes, I mean conquest. That’s what testosterone does. It’s also full of love, tenderness, compassion, jealousy, respect, dignity, and a need for security and a home. It’s men’s revenge on men. The old joke applies: What does a lesbian bring on a second date? A U-Haul. What does a gay man bring on a second date? What second date?

I know this must be a pain in the neck for most women. But it’s who we are. It’s a blessing and a curse. It’s called being male, this strange creature, covered in hair, pinioned between morality and hormones, governed by two brains, one above and one below. We can and should be restrained, tamed, kept under control. But nature will not be eradicated. And when left-feminism denies nature’s power, ignores testosterone, and sees all this behavior as a function entirely of structural patriarchal oppression, it is going to overreach. It is going to misunderstand. And it is going to alienate a lot of people. If most men are told that what they are deep down is, in fact, “problematic” if not “toxic,” they are going to get defensive, and with good reason. And they are going to react. So, by the way, are the countless women who do not see this kind of masculinity as toxic, who want men to be different, who are, in fact, deeply attracted to the core aggression of the human male, and contemptuous of the latest orthodoxy from Brooklyn.

And men, especially young men in this environment, will begin to ask questions about why they are now routinely seen as a “problem,” and why their sex lives are now fair game for any journalist. And because our dialogue is now so constrained, and the fact of natural sexual differences so actively suppressed by the academy and the mainstream media, they will find the truths about nature in other contexts. They will stumble across alt-right websites that deploy these truths to foment an equal and opposite form of ideology, soaked in actual misogyny, and become convinced that every sexual interaction is a zero-sum battlefield. They will see this as a war between the genders, not as a way to advance the freedom of both. They will fight back, and in this tribalized culture, the conflict will intensify. Suppress debate, ban ideas from civil conversation, and you won’t abolish these ideas. You will hand them to the worst bigots and give them credibility.

This week, in the New York Times, Tom Edsall bravely exposed the politics of this. He looked at the data and found, believe it or not, that gender-studies feminism is not shared by all women by any means, and is increasingly loathed by men — and not just older men. “2016 saw the greatest number of votes cast by young white men in the past 12 years — markedly higher than their female counterparts,” says Kei Kawashima-Ginsberg, a psychologist at Tufts. Their support for the Democratic nominee dropped by 15 points from 2008 to 2016. Edsall reports that “a Cato 2017 Free Speech and Tolerance Survey found that a bare majority (51 percent) of Democrats believes that calling out sexism is typically justified and not designed to shut off discussion. In sharp contrast, Ekins wrote, about three-fourths (76 percent) of Republicans and two-thirds (65 percent) of independents believe it’s primarily used as a tool to stifle debate.” Two-thirds of Independents now suspect the sincerity of most claims of sexism. Congrats, Brooklyn. Other polls show a declining support for core feminist principles among high-school seniors in the last decade. When I stumble across young male Trump supporters — and there are plenty of gay men among them — this is what they point to. They are defending their core being from left-feminist assault. Insofar as they are pushing back against the latest wave of feminist misandry, I’m not without some sympathy.

Trump understands this dynamic intuitively. Bannon believed it was integral to the Trump project, and wants the slanted elite discourse on men to continue and intensify. I think this issue was an under-acknowledged cause for Clinton’s failure. At some point, Democrats and liberals are going to have to decide if they want to “problematize” half the voting population. They are going to have to figure out who they really side with: Brooklyn or much of America? Reality or an ideology? Both genders or one?

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

We are not "trash". We are not "scum". We are human. Stop enabling hate speech.

2017 was the year that SJWs and feminists were incredulous and outraged that anyone could have the gall to call them out on their blatant bigotry:

I can't even.

Some quotes from the first dumpster fire of an article, from Gizmodo:
As the old saying goes, “men are trash.” If you’re a twenty-something woman, you’ve probably said this phrase to your friends at least once, possibly over alcoholic drinks after a man has done something bad. Or perhaps you’ve said it to coworkers after your dumb boss makes a boob joke in front of the entire company.

[...] Phyllis Meehan, a 29-year-old corporate administrator living in San Francisco, told Gizmodo she changed her cover photo to an image that featured the phrase on Monday evening. On Tuesday evening, she said, she went back on Facebook—only to receive a message saying Facebook had removed the image, and that she was blocked from posting for 24 hours.
Blocked from posting on Facebook for 24 hours? PATRIARCHAL OPPRESSION!! ANTI-SPEECH FASCISM!! #INeedFeminismBecause
As she explained to Gizmodo, “Obviously not all men are trash, however, the ones who are really upset about it are the ones who absolutely are.”
"Obviously not all black people are scum, however, the ones who are really upset about the crosses we're burning absolutely are!"
Chad Lavimoniere, a UX designer at a startup in New York, said that after Meehan’s cover photo post was removed, he posted the image with the following text: “A friend of mine got reported/blocked from Facebook for 24 hours for posting this meme. Who are the fragile snowflakes, again?” That post, too, was taken down.
Well, the fragile snowflakes would be the ones bitching and whining whenever their bigoted hate speech gets taken down off social media.
It seems clear that Phyllis—and possibly Lily, Chad, and Kayla—had some Facebook friends who reported their posts as offensive. (I posted both the text “men are trash” and the image on my Facebook yesterday, and none of my friends have reported me.) But that still doesn’t explain why Facebook would think the image or its contents were worth removing—and go so far as to ban users from posting altogether.

When we reached out to Facebook, we got an answer: The company said that, under its guidelines, the posts fell under the category of hate speech; it would only allow such posts when it had enough context to know it was meant as humor, or was being used self-referentially. So it’s pretty clear: Facebook considers the phrase “men are trash” hate speech.
I imagine Facebook considers water wet, too.
Facebook’s guidelines ban hate speech that “directly attacks people based on their race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, sex, gender, or gender identity, or, serious disabilities or diseases.” The guidelines also “allow humor, satire or social commentary related to these topics, and we believe that when people use their authentic identity, they are more responsible when they share this kind of commentary.”

But the part of the article that most ensures that its flag is planted near the top of Bullshit Mountain comes right at the end:
More to the point: “men are trash” is not hate speech. Largely, men who act offended by things like “men are trash” or “white people suck” are doing it to make a point, not because they really are offended; they seem to think being offended by a slur is a fun activity they’re being left out of.

But I’m sorry, dudes: that just isn’t how it works. “Men are trash” is simply not the same thing as sexist attacks on women, because you don’t face the systemic oppression that makes sexist slurs so toxic. If you’re a man and someone calls you a stupid trash man, wow, I’m sorry you had a bad day. If someone calls a woman a bitch or a slut, that’s tinged with millennia of oppression.

Sweet holy mother of Jesus, these last two paragraphs are so spit-take-inducingly stupid it's hard to know where to begin. Line-by-line, I guess?
More to the point: “men are trash” is not hate speech.
Largely, men who act offended by things like “men are trash” or “white people suck” are doing it to make a point, not because they really are offended; they seem to think being offended by a slur is a fun activity they’re being left out of.
Gosh, they sure did nail it here. You got me! I'm actually totally cool with being called 'oppressive trash' or 'worthless scum' simply because I happen to have been born with a Y-chromosome. I mean, who could ever ACTUALLY be offended by something like that? Truth is, I really ENJOY being told multiple times per day that being born male automatically makes me a terrible piece of shit for the rest of my life, by people who then claim they're "fighting sexism" and that they just want "gender equality". That's where the REAL fun is!
But I’m sorry, dudes: that just isn’t how it works. “Men are trash” is simply not the same thing as sexist attacks on women, because you don’t face the systemic oppression that makes sexist slurs so toxic.

And I'm so glad she's here to tell me what kinds of oppression I do and don't face. #Womansplaining?
If you’re a man and someone calls you a stupid trash man, wow, I’m sorry you had a bad day. If someone calls a woman a bitch or a slut, that’s tinged with millennia of oppression.

"Bitch" is female for "asshole". Men get called assholes all the time. Get the fuck over yourself.

And here's some quotes from the second, from The Daily Beast:
When comic Marcia Belsky sarcastically replied “men are scum” to a friend’s Facebook post back in October, she never anticipated being banned from the platform for 30 days.
"I mean, I never imagined that being a hateful bigot would ever have any consequences!"
Women have posted things as bland as “men ain’t shit,” “all men are ugly,” and even “all men are allegedly ugly” and had their posts removed. They’ve been locked out of their accounts for suggesting that, since “all men are ugly,” country music star Blake Shelton “winning the sexiest man isn’t a triumph.”

“I personally posted men are scum in November and I received a seven-day ban. It’s still ongoing. Two days and 23 hours left,” said comedian Alison Klemp.
Huh. I guess I hadn't realized that the feminist position had evolved to "sexism and body-shaming is perfectly okay as long as it's bland enough".
In late November, after the issue was raised in a private Facebook group of nearly 500 female comedians, women pledged to post some variation of “men are scum” to Facebook on Nov. 24 in order to stage a protest. Nearly every women who carried out the pledge was banned.
"We even COORDINATED our hate, and they STILL banned us? OUTRAGEOUS!!!!"
“It wasn’t the best protest because it clearly didn’t work,” said Klemp. Avery said she is still suffering the consequences after posting “men are trash” on that day.
Aww, poor thing. Suffering all those terrible consequences of telling half the people on the fucking planet that we should go die in a fire.
When asked why a statement such as “men are scum” would violate community standards, a Facebook spokesperson said that the statement was an attack and hate speech toward a protected group and so it would rightfully be taken down.

As ProPublica revealed in an investigation in June, white men are listed as a protected group by the platform.

A Facebook spokesperson clarified that this is because all genders, races, and religions are all protected characteristics under Facebook’s current policy. However, it’s clear that even with 7,000 Facebook content moderators, things slip through the cracks.
Woah, woah, woah. "ALL genders"? Even the MEN?? What kind of unbelievably terrible system acts as if MEN were actual human beings?? #PATRIARCHYYYYYYYYYY
One issue with the way Facebook moderators currently review posts is that many “problematic” posts are viewed individually, without context because of privacy concerns. Facebook moderators also aren’t able to view personal or demographic information about the original poster. This means that they sometimes don’t know whether a piece of content was posted by a black queer woman or a white straight male.

With hate speech in particular, the person writing the post is just as relevant as what is being said. The fact that Facebook’s moderators aren’t always given this information means that sometimes benign statements can be misinterpreted, and vice versa.

Let's cut this bullshit off right at the knees: it does. not. matter. whether a piece of hateful, bigoted vitriol was written by someone who was male, female, black, white, straight, or gay. If you are being a hateful, stupid, prejudiced asshole, you are being a hateful, stupid, prejudiced asshole. Period. If you run around screaming about how you think all men should die, you are literally no better than the actual Nazis who marched in Charlottesville to scream about how all blacks, Jews, and Muslims should die. Sorry to break this concept to you, DESPITE HOW EXTREMELY GODDAMNED FUCKING OBVIOUS IT SHOULD BE.

The only reason people like this think context matters is that they are trying, desperately, to find a way to try to justify their own hatred, and to differentiate themselves from other hate groups inside their own minds. This is why people who think Muslims should be banned from entering the US can also look at the KKK and say "Gosh, they sure are racist!"
In the past, ironic misandry has been a popular way for women to deal with living in a world where they’re exposed to frequent abuse at the hands of powerful men.
Right, because as we all know, if you've been bitten by a pit bull it means all pit bulls on the planet are vicious and violent, and should be banned (if not outright euthanized).
Yet, if a woman takes to Facebook to vent about how she “wants to imprison men and milk them for their male tears,” she could quickly lose access to her account.
I can't believe this sentence has the tone of incredulity. Go ahead and replace "men/male" in that sentence with literally any other group ("Jews/Jewish", "Muslims/Muslim", "blacks/black", "women/female") – does it still seem so "crazy" that Facebook would take action against the person posting it?
Trolls know this. “The ironic thing about Literal Nazis is that they have weaponized taking things literally,” BuzzFeed writer Katie Notopoulos wrote recently.
I admit I laughed at the notion of "WE are just being ironic and THEY are WEAPONIZING taking things literally" – because the SJW left has also taken the exact opposite stance as well ("I can't believe the alt-right is WEAPONIZING IRONY like this!!")

Maybe, just maybe.....both the alt-right and the SJW left are full of bigoted, hypocritical dickheads.
“I get cold feet to post stuff, especially if I try to share something that’s going on that I want to bring attention to. because I feel like I’m going to get in trouble somehow,” she said. “Sharing anything is nerve racking. It’s like, ‘What’s ok? What’s not ok? What’s going to cross the line this time?’ It makes me feel crazy, like Facebook is gaslighting us.”
Avery said Facebook’s banning policy itself ties into the #MeToo movement.

“How else can we have a genuine reaction to what’s going on?” Avery said. “Facebook is absolutely silencing women.”
Facebook is not "silencing women". Facebook is taking its first timid steps toward cracking down on hateful rhetoric being constantly spewed across the site, from both right-wingers and SJWs. Personally, I think telling bigoted pieces of shit to go fuck themselves is exactly what the world needs more of right now.

I have to fight against this type of hate quite literally every day at this point. That's how widespread this ugly virus has become among the political left. And it exacts a heavy toll, especially in terms of friendships and mental health. When you are constantly exposed to this type of hatred, and when much of it is coming from people you thought of as friends and ideological allies, it becomes almost impossible to avoid internalizing greater and greater amounts of it.

But I can at least take solace in the fact that plenty of people besides me are (finally) fighting back against this type of bullshit.

Here's a sampling of comments on the first article:

Even Andrew Sullivan, my all-time favorite writer, is fighting back

And I'm still fighting back, to reclaim and protect my male identity from the misandrists trying to rip it away from me and destroy it. That's why I've been calling out this type of bigotry on the left for so long. (And you'll notice, by the way, that in none of my criticisms of feminism have I ever resorted to calling women "trash".)