Not officially reblogging this response because I don’t want to spark a hate war swirling around one particular tumblr user. I probably wouldn’t even bother responding but I kind of get the sense there’s a faction out there that feels this way.
oh come on this race answer is unmitigated bullshit
don’t try to eek out a tiny bit of totally undeserved race-representation cred when you are indisputably portraying eight white kids in a row
This is a racist response.
They are only “indisputably” white because of the social and cultural associations you are making yourself, between the backgrounds and behaviors of these characters, and those you assign to white people as a general rule.
Let’s look at John’s situation. An average looking, suburban, middle class household, run by a generic looking business man father who smokes a pipe. Culturally, there is plenty about this situation that says “white America”. But citing any of this as strong proof that they’re white is what’s racist. Are you saying a Hispanic family couldn’t find themselves in this situation, in either this universe or the non-fictionalized US? Are you saying a black kid wouldn’t behave like John? Or an Asian man couldn’t possibly style himself as a throwback era father? What exactly are you saying here?
Let’s pretend I’m coming out and saying John is Asian for a minute. What can you supply to refute this? Does your argument boil down to, “Come on Hussie, the cultural clues to a white family are all there. You’re being disingenuous. If you wanted to indicate he was Asian, you’d have left some clue.” So my question is, what clues could I possibly leave to this effect? Maybe make him good at math?? I’m frankly drawing a blank at even facetious possibilities. What racial clues, when absent, prove they must not be a certain race? Does the absence of African tribal masks littered around the house prove beyond a shadow of a doubt they aren’t black? Or is it just they fact they don’t live in a ghetto that rules that out?? Really, this entire line of thinking, i.e. looking for “supporting evidence”, is implicitly racist.
If you think I’m being disingenuous and pulling this a-racial thing out of nowhere, this is what I’ve always said since the beginning. People wondered about race, and I said the answer was N/A. These are templatized characters, and while many aspects of the comic are vibrantly colored, their skin tone is religiously left blank. Blank not as in white, per se, but as non-affiliated, as if they were lifted from a coloring book. It is this way because abstraction rules this universe absolutely. Abstraction rules their identities, the way they’re named, the qualities of their guardians, the way they pick up objects, the way they engage in dialogue, and everything about the game they play.
It is also a heavily templatized story universe. The notion of “character” in Homestuck is a highly malleable construct, as it is in certain games. So much of HS and Sburb is designed with EXTREME flexibility in mind. It’s designed to have your imagination fill in gaps, and expand the universe far beyond the boundaries of what happens in the story. Everything was built with this in mind. The alchemy system, to get you to wonder what items you’d make. The prototyping system, to get you to wonder what sort of quest you’d build for yourself. What planets might your session have? What god tier titles? Are there more than what’s shown? You’re always being invited to ask by the systems that are introduced, what more is possible through this? This was a deliberate feature of HS built in from the start. It was a guiding principle for its construction, and still is. I’m sure it’s a very major reason why it’s captured a lot of imaginations. So in this medium of intrinsic abstraction and malleability, if you’re suggesting it’s somehow flimsy or weak to not offer an iron clad ruling on something so trivial as race, I’m going to suggest you are very badly NOT GETTING IT.
And to actually get indignant at the suggestion that race is canonically non-applicable, because you think it’s JUST SO OBVIOUS all these kids are white? That’s the ugliness of bigotry surfacing. Bigotry not only blinds you to ways you are in error, but triggers an automated response of anger to differing points of view. And then you don’t even realize that’s what happened. It’s not a great way to be.
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