So, recently Penny Arcade’s Mike Krahulik offered a fairly long-winded apology for several years of being an asshole.
Naturally, our Senior Editor came to me asking me to write about it, for reasons that should be obvious. My response was to yell “Pecking order!” before throwing her off of my awesome tower in the sky. I then went back to watching TFS Dragonball Z Abridged, where I stole the pecking order joke from, only to be interrupted by our Editor in Chief, who wanted to whine at me about throwing our Senior Editor into the clouds.
In order to shut him up, I read through Krahulik’s apology, and then sat down to do my job of telling you people what to think…
Yeah, seems legit.
Look, I’m not trying to excuse Penny Arcade. I’m the guy who made this video, so it’s not like I have some deep hidden love of Penny Arcade. Krahulik’s shown a willingness to be an asshole, and I don’t think he’s going to stop being an asshole just because he did a little soul searching. He’s a human being, and like all human beings, when you spend a long time doing a certain thing, it takes some time to stop doing that thing.
At the same time, I think his post rings true. That is to say, I accept his reasoning as to why he felt it was important to be an asshole, and I acknowledge his desire to be less of an asshole. What’s more, I even acknowledge that he did everything right in the wake of his last fuck up. We didn’t even see a comment from Holkins about censorship or freedom of speech, which I confess surprises the hell out of me. All that says to me that he recognizes that he shouldn’t act the way he does.
It’s easy for me to qualify that, as I’m sure you’re doing right now. Maybe the only reason he’s saying all of this is because he knows its putting his business at stake. Maybe he’s afraid that if he doesn’t apologize and keep his mouth shut, the collected rage of geek culture will put him out of business for good. I hear that concern, but my only reaction to it is to ask if that wasn’t what we wanted. The simple truth is that we can’t control another human being’s feelings, nor is it right to try. We can only demand people treat us with respect and dignity, and do the same to them. As long as a person’s actions are appropriate, they can feel whatever way they wish.
Thus, Mike Krahulik has given what sounds like a sincere apology. He has genuinely searched his own actions and reasoning, explained the process by which he arrived at his conclusions, and accepted that it was an inappropriate way to act. He’ll make another mistake, because he’s human, and humans make mistakes. But as long as he indicates a genuine understanding of what he did wrong, I’m willing to extend the olive branch.
I mean, it’s not like he’s our uppity Senior Editor, right?