Russia hangs adults-only rating on The Sims 4 (arstechnica.com)

{Games}

1803 ups - 675 downs = 1128 votes

246 comments submitted at 19:12:13 on May 9, 2014 by S14Vine

  • [-]
  • Seiyko
  • -289 Points
  • 19:48:13, 9 May

I can respect that.

Bigots are going to come and say "huhu discrimination". Tell you what, unless you know the culture, and can think through it, you can't possible judge without ethnocentrism.

EDIT: Everyone automatically assumed a pro-gay stance is progressive. Foreigners at it again, ignoring cultural nuances.

EDIT2: I didn't say you shouldn't judge. I said it's impossible for anyone unfamiliar with the culture to judge without biases. I stand by my point.

  • [-]
  • Funktapus
  • 92 Points
  • 20:33:24, 9 May

Thats bullshit... cultures can be backwards. We can and should criticize entire cultures for their biases.

  • [-]
  • Hoptadock
  • -19 Points
  • 21:27:38, 9 May

You can't just change a culture like that. Its backwards but we can do anything about it today for tomorrow

  • [-]
  • omgitsbigbear
  • 18 Points
  • 22:07:00, 9 May

Cultures change though normalization over time. That norming happens when people see behaviors or actions more often in their daily lives.

  • [-]
  • Hoptadock
  • -4 Points
  • 23:20:25, 9 May

And the people need to stand up to censorship until it becomes taboo. Then once the media is uncensored, the population will become less backwards by our standards. It doesn't make it right but it isn't fair to hate on the I'll informed

  • [-]
  • omgitsbigbear
  • 6 Points
  • 23:46:50, 9 May

I don't think anyone is really hating on the ill informed. From what I've seen it is mainly just people wanting this things to be able to be exposed in Russia.

However I will say that the part of the culture and laws of Russia that make physical assaults on gays tacitly legal is absolutely worthy of hate.

  • [-]
  • Hoptadock
  • -4 Points
  • 23:50:58, 9 May

The government deserves hate. Not the people

  • [-]
  • omgitsbigbear
  • 9 Points
  • 23:56:49, 9 May

I'm sorry but there is no way you can convince me that an organization like "occupy pedophilia" which posts gay bashing videos on the internet does not deserve my hate. That goes beyond cultural relativism.

  • [-]
  • Hoptadock
  • -2 Points
  • 00:22:18, 10 May

The vast majority if the homophobic people are raised to be live things like this. Those do not deserve hate, only pity. The people who deserve hate are those people and the government

  • [-]
  • RetroViruses
  • 1 Points
  • 03:11:20, 10 May

A culture is taught by your family, your friends, not the government. Stop trying to make such an insane prejudice understandable. It's exactly as understandable as being racist.

  • [-]
  • Hoptadock
  • 1 Points
  • 04:21:23, 10 May

If you are raised a tacit you become a racist for at least a part of your life. Your government has control over the media and only allows racist stuff through. You become racist by the government

  • [-]
  • ghazi364
  • -24 Points
  • 21:49:52, 9 May

You are doing nothing but proving his point. They call you backwards, you call them backwards, there is 0 objectivity to who is right.

  • [-]
  • Varf
  • 16 Points
  • 23:30:41, 9 May

The side that discriminates against a group of people is the wrong one.

  • [-]
  • ghazi364
  • 1 Points
  • 02:37:57, 10 May

You're discriminating against them though, aren't you? Further, you still can't prove that it's wrong. We discriminate against pedophilia, right?

  • [-]
  • UnoriginalRhetoric
  • 1 Points
  • 03:50:27, 10 May

Because we know pedophilia objectively harms children? Causing long term mental issues, and it creates massively exploitative relationships where the child is emotionally, intellectually, financially, and legally inferior to the adult. Basically the children lack the capability to be little more than pawns to the sexual desires of the adult.

So we protect children from ending up in harmful, exploitative relationships which they lack the tools to avoid themselves.

Homosexuality between two consenting adults has no objective harm. Discrimination of peoples however does. See the evidence submitted to the supreme court in Brown V. Board of Education for proof.

Thus we see them engaging in a harmful act of discrimination against an act which causes zero harm. Creating a net amount of harm.

Creating a demonstrable wrong which exists independent of cultural belief. You cannot believe away the harm of discrimination, and you cannot believe into existence any real world harm of homosexuality. Its not a cultural issue.

  • [-]
  • ghazi364
  • 1 Points
  • 04:03:16, 10 May

We also know that same-sex relations are an independent risk factor for various health issues, related to the sexual patterns (which are present in heterosexuals as well, but not in every heterosexual relationship). Same-sex attraction has no real-world harm, but same-sex intercourse, for males at least, has a very prominent demonstrable real-world harm, by virtue of its method of practice. You're also drawing a direct line from pedophilia to molestation - which it is not always the case.

Aside from pedophilia, consider that in China it is notorious that public urination is a widespread phenomenon. The ostracization and, indeed, legal reprimands for any individual doing that here in the west are doing far more net harm than leaving them be. There's plenty of other little cultural nuances that fit your bill that you are blind to because they are so "normal" to you.

  • [-]
  • grelphy
  • 14 Points
  • 23:42:58, 9 May

> there is 0 objectivity to who is right.

What a ridiculous thing to say. Leaving aside the part where you morally equated dehumanizing a group of people for an attribute they have no control over and, uh, not doing so, there's lots of scientific research showing that homosexuals have no negative impact on a society.

  • [-]
  • ghazi364
  • 1 Points
  • 02:37:04, 10 May

You can't prove that, and someone can say it doesn't matter what impact they have, only their beliefs. Ultimately every belief is an opinion and you can't prove your own "right."

edit: you are an honest idiot for saying >you morally equated dehumanizing a group of people for an attribute they have no control over and, uh, not doing so

I didn't morally do anything. I'm being factual about people's beliefs being unable to be proven right or wrong. You are making wild assumptions about my own beliefs in the process of your ignorance.

  • [-]
  • jojojoy
  • 1 Points
  • 02:49:22, 10 May

One group actively discriminates against a certain group of people. The other doesn't.

  • [-]
  • the_xxvii
  • -18 Points
  • 21:59:35, 9 May

I can't tell if you're being sarcastic or not.

  • [-]
  • Deceptichum
  • 11 Points
  • 22:08:55, 9 May

How's it sarcastic?

Like a user said below 'Forced female circumcision is a cultural thing' with that example, would criticising that not be fair? Nothing is perfect and it's better to criticise anything and everything in an effort to bring change instead of just accepting it as how things are.

  • [-]
  • L4ctor
  • 62 Points
  • 20:26:51, 9 May

You can judge without being ethnocentric. We can understand why the attitude in Russia is homo-phobic, but still say that the attitude is wrong.

  • [-]
  • KaiserTom
  • -33 Points
  • 21:52:20, 9 May

But only wrong as per our own culture, which is still ethnocentrism. Even human rights are technically a culture, it's just how society is. Society does not progress, nor does it advance, it just simply changes.

  • [-]
  • mahoganywolf
  • 26 Points
  • 23:43:00, 9 May

Bollocks. Allowing equal rights for gay people is objectively better than not doing so, ethnocentrism be buggered.

  • [-]
  • jojojoy
  • 1 Points
  • 02:49:54, 10 May

> But only wrong as per our own culture,

How do gay people in russia feel about all this?

  • [-]
  • Human_Sack
  • 148 Points
  • 20:11:46, 9 May

So discrimination against gays is alright because it's "part of the culture?"

  • [-]
  • SwineHerald
  • 66 Points
  • 21:26:35, 9 May

Just like how slavery and apartheid were alright because they were "part of a culture."

  • [-]
  • facepoppies
  • -52 Points
  • 21:58:16, 9 May

I think comparing an Adults Only rating on a video game because of same sex relationships to FUCKING SLAVERY HOLY SHIT ARE YOU KIDDING ME WHAT THE FUCK?! isn't really being reasonable.

  • [-]
  • Mahatama
  • 36 Points
  • 22:03:39, 9 May

I don't get how you can look at that comment and take away from it, " that guy thinks that discrimination against gays = slavery"

If the reasoning is the same I don't see why its unfair to make a comparison between 2 things. You are just having an immediate emotional reaction to it and making your mind up that slavery is this incomparable evil that trumps everything else instead of actually trying to understand the reasoning behind the comparison.

  • [-]
  • rayne117
  • 1 Points
  • 01:52:34, 10 May

It's exactly what he said. It's like jumping straight to YOU'RE LITERALLY HITLER!!!

  • [-]
  • facepoppies
  • -21 Points
  • 22:07:43, 9 May

Please explain to me how slavery is comparable to Russia giving The Sims 4 an AO rating for containing same-sex relationships.

  • [-]
  • SwineHerald
  • 22 Points
  • 22:09:34, 9 May

I'm comparing a law that makes it legal to discriminate against people based on their sexual preference to laws that made it legal to discriminate (or worse) based on race. The Sims 4 debacle is simply a symptom of a larger issue.

  • [-]
  • theredball
  • 21 Points
  • 22:11:54, 9 May

You're completely ignoring the reasoning behind the ao rating. An adults only rating is incomparable to slavery. Persecution of a people is comparable.

  • [-]
  • Dullahan3470
  • -20 Points
  • 23:25:29, 9 May

The severity of persecution isn't remotely equivalent though, so it's still a bad comparison.

  • [-]
  • furrysparks
  • 10 Points
  • 23:37:07, 9 May

He isn't saying the severity is the same, they are talking about the thought process.

  • [-]
  • Dullahan3470
  • 1 Points
  • 04:27:03, 10 May

The thought process is that Russia considers homosexuality to be inappropriate in the same manner that America considers nudity/sex portrayal in video games in appropriate.

It's not the same as censorship or "trying to sweep it under the rug". They think it is disgusting in the same way we perceive pedophilia over here. Good luck getting a game with a pedophile having sex with a minor with a rating under AO in North America.

  • [-]
  • TheBatIsI
  • 1 Points
  • 02:30:33, 10 May

No. It's not alright. But I fucking hate it when people look at things from a vacuum.

The LGBT movement has little room to grow right now in Russia because for the most part, anyone who cares about improving the plight of its citizens is focused mostly on human rights as a whole. Compared to that, the LGBT movement is considered to be something that can be shelved for later.

  • [-]
  • GeniusUsername
  • -8 Points
  • 21:57:33, 9 May

No, I think he's saying that it's their beliefs, and he doesn't agree with them, but he respects them.

  • [-]
  • dustfeather
  • 20 Points
  • 23:53:50, 9 May

There is nothing worth respecting though. His opinion sends a hateful message and should not be tolerated.

  • [-]
  • GeniusUsername
  • 5 Points
  • 00:07:29, 10 May

I can't argue with that.

  • [-]
  • mahoganywolf
  • 18 Points
  • 23:43:52, 9 May

Well he shouldn't respect them, they're wrong.

  • [-]
  • Keksus_
  • -59 Points
  • 20:33:20, 9 May

I know what he means. We just look at it as right. but that's our opinion because we see freedom as right. But is it necessarely? The same can be swod about anything we take as a given and think is "right".

  • [-]
  • 10GuyIsDrunk
  • 27 Points
  • 20:54:00, 9 May

I'll accept arguments for culture when they don't hurt anyone. People get hurt when others (especially governments) take an anti-gay stance.

Culture isn't worth anything when coming out to people you thought were friends can mean a bottle shoved up your ass, you dick cut, and your head smashed in with a big rock to the point where the cops can't recognize you.
True story.

  • [-]
  • StupidButSerious
  • 1 Points
  • 01:40:38, 10 May

Wasn't the anti gay stance just being that they aren't allowed to teach gayness to minors? You realize it's illegal in the USA to have anal sex before 18years old anyway?

  • [-]
  • 10GuyIsDrunk
  • 1 Points
  • 02:56:57, 10 May

Age of consent for anal sex being higher than the normal age of consent actually makes sense. While there are dangers to regular intercourse, pregnancy and STDs being the largest, you can seriously injure someone having anal sex and the risk for STDs is even larger. There is a level of responsibility and care that needs to be taken that is a step above normal intercourse. Hopefully, 2-4 additional years of living will prepare someone for that better, who knows if it does though. Not that a law like this will stop a couple kids from doing it.

> Wasn't the anti gay stance just being that they aren't allowed to teach gayness to minors?

No. Remember that propaganda could be anything from a rainbow patch to telling someone on twitter who is suicidal that it's okay to be gay.

As Wikipedia puts it, "International rights groups have described the current situation as the worst human rights climate in the post-Soviet era, while Russian historian, and human rights activist Lyudmila Alexeyeva called the anti-propaganda law 'a step toward the Middle Ages.'"

  • [-]
  • Robert_T_Pooner
  • 34 Points
  • 20:47:29, 9 May

The reason moral/cultural relativism is shitty philosophy is that it automatically assumes that any kind of argument or discussion of morality is essentially impossible. It precludes logical debate on these types of political/societal issues, which are very important and which actually affect the lives of many people in the real world. I mean, your entire point is a non-sequitor; you're basically saying "People disagree about these things a lot, so everything about morality is just people's opinions so we can never say anything is objectively bad"

  • [-]
  • sfr18
  • 1 Points
  • 21:18:26, 9 May

But can we ever come to a conclusion of an objective morality? Objective morality always comes to point where there are situations that are not black or white with no clear answer

  • [-]
  • Robert_T_Pooner
  • 9 Points
  • 21:23:53, 9 May

In every conceivable case? Maybe not. My point though is that these kinds of philosophical debates do not occur in an intellectual vacuum. They have very real and very profound effects on individuals, groups, and nations. Philosophy is the basis of law, and thus in a very real way of human civilization, without which humanity would be nothing. Therefore it is of great importance that we can have these kinds of debates, and moral relativism precludes that.

  • [-]
  • sfr18
  • 2 Points
  • 22:03:01, 9 May

I think you are getting at contextualism. I would agree philosophy's influence, but honestly, throwing out moral relativism is throwing out basis of a lot of philosophical debate. Pythagoras and Spinoza wrote based on that idea. Hell, one could argue that most political theories, such as property right, are morally relative. Don't want to start a big fuss, bit we cant entirely dismiss relativism

  • [-]
  • theredball
  • 52 Points
  • 20:45:24, 9 May

Forced female circumcision is a cultural thing as well. Is that ok because it's just not our culture? Slavery is cultural in a lot of places. Human sacrifice. Child rape. Cannibalism.

Edit and let's just get Godwin's law in here immediately and say that Nazis were part of the german culture thus with your argument it could be said their actions were not wrong since it was just different from our view point.

edit edit: to be clear I'm not comparing an A/O rating to these things, I'm comparing the thought process used to rationalize that persecuting gays is ok because of cultural differences

  • [-]
  • WeirdF
  • 8 Points
  • 21:13:38, 9 May

I do agree that those things are wrong, but you saying all of that isn't going to convince a cultural relativist of anything because you're just telling them what they believe.

  • [-]
  • theredball
  • 12 Points
  • 22:07:11, 9 May

It's just a convenient way to ignore things under the guise of who am I to judge. I understand trying to look at things from other's perspectives but I don't understand how you can look at the perspective of the persecuters and say it's ok and then not look at it from the perspective of those being persecuted.

  • [-]
  • BuzzBadpants
  • 0 Points
  • 22:03:22, 9 May

Agreed. It's stuff like this that really ARE cultural differences. When we call a country out for their homophobic or antisemitic practices, they see it as persecution from The West. They aren't wrong about that, either. I'm not gonna say that these cultural beliefs are acceptable, but it's important to realize that any time we say something is unacceptable, we usually say so from a position of default supposed superiority.

It's widely accepted that Russia enacted their anti-gay laws not because they genuinely hated gay people, but because gay acceptance is a symbol of western ideals. Putin was shoring up support from conservative nationalists and gays were an easy target.

  • [-]
  • notandxor
  • 3 Points
  • 20:57:45, 9 May

Some people would agree with that statement.

  • [-]
  • Dullahan3470
  • -10 Points
  • 23:30:47, 9 May

Sure, why not.

Are we suggesting that we need world police to ensure that people all over the world adhere to the same morals, beliefs, practices and behaviours as the "common majority"? How's that for irony from the LGBT movement...

I have my own personal beliefs of right and wrong. I think that locally a culture absolutely should derive it's morals from the local majority. But that sphere of influences begins and ends where the culture begins and ends. What makes my personal morals more "righteous" or "fair" than someone across the world?

This is some crusader-tier logic. 'My religion is the best, the practices and beliefs of those other religions are wrong! We must force them to follow our religion."

Persecuting gays because of cultural differences is absolutely okay. I empathize greatly with anyone who is oppressed, hurt or killed over it, but I totally believe in the right for a culture to self-regulate. To say otherwise is to claim that only your own morals should be followed by everyone on the planet. Again, really fucking ironic from anyone supporting gay rights.

  • [-]
  • eduardog3000
  • 1 Points
  • 00:47:39, 10 May

>Are we suggesting that we need world police to ensure that people all over the world adhere to the same morals, beliefs, practices and behaviours as the "common majority"? How's that for irony from the LGBT movement...

It's not an issue of what the "common majority" believes, it is an issue of equal rights for all.

  • [-]
  • [deleted]
  • 1 Points
  • 00:58:39, 10 May

[deleted]

  • [-]
  • eduardog3000
  • 1 Points
  • 00:49:57, 10 May

>Persecuting gays because of cultural differences is absolutely okay.

Ok, in my culture, homophobes are to be put to death on the spot.

  • [-]
  • solistus
  • 1 Points
  • 01:33:30, 10 May

>To say otherwise is to claim that only your own morals should be followed by everyone on the planet.

No, that's a bullshit false dichotomy. You can deem some practices that you personally dislike acceptable as cultural differences, and denounce others as being blatantly unjust. The options are not limited to "police every person on the planet to do exactly what I think they should do" or "anything that any other group of people chooses to do is okay with me, regardless of how blatantly immoral and discriminatory it appears to be and how many people it is demonstrably causing harm to, because it's a different culture."

What if my "cultural values" include not turning a blind eye to what happens in other cultures?

  • [-]
  • Dullahan3470
  • 1 Points
  • 02:04:06, 10 May

Condoning certain behaviours and not others is not all that different than policing.

Some people feel similarly disgusted by homosexuality. Are they wrong for having their own beliefs about the subject simply because those beliefs differ from yours?

  • [-]
  • theredball
  • 1 Points
  • 03:06:08, 10 May

Yes if they involve the persecution and objectification of other people. No one should be persecuted because of they way they were born

  • [-]
  • Kimmux
  • 14 Points
  • 20:43:03, 9 May

I'm pretty sure that discriminating people based on something they were genetically born with, and have no power to change is a negative in all modern cultures. This would be the basis of what we might call a civil social structure. Outside of these basic principles we may as well jump back in the food chain and let natural selection roll the dice for us. With great power, comes great responsibility.

  • [-]
  • Straw___Man
  • 26 Points
  • 20:01:02, 9 May

"Judging with ethnocentrism" can't possibly be wrong in every case.

  • [-]
  • 10GuyIsDrunk
  • 44 Points
  • 20:21:31, 9 May

Russia's government has been in the news many times over the last couple of years for being extremely anti-gay. Disturbingly so.

I don't think anyone who would suggest this is because of that would be being a bigot.

  • [-]
  • Exepony
  • 26 Points
  • 21:16:10, 9 May

I was born and raised in Russia, and have lived there for the entirety of my life. Because of that, I like to think that I "know the culture and can think through it". I still find the rampant homophobia terrible and abhorrent. So there you go, I guess. This is your official permission from a certified Russian to condemn the discrimination of gay people in Russia, like any person with the slightest shred of empathy fucking should.

  • [-]
  • Wizzer10
  • 38 Points
  • 20:34:16, 9 May

So it's okay because it's the norm in Russia? That's insane. Lots of things are the norm in lots of places. FGM is the norm in lots of places. Killing people because of their religion (or lack of thereof) is the norm in lots of places. Doesn't make it okay.

  • [-]
  • Mister_Alucard
  • 9 Points
  • 21:55:25, 9 May

There's no cultural nuance that can make dehumanizing a person for their opinion on dick okay. If a culture is okay with rape that doesn't mean rape is all good and we should tolerate their cultural differences.

  • [-]
  • mortar
  • 4 Points
  • 00:09:59, 10 May

Yeah man, also, being racist in Russia is totally cool. It's a cultural nuance. Us westerners couldn't possibly understand.

  • [-]
  • mrubios
  • 2 Points
  • 23:37:02, 9 May

Ahh... moral relativism, we meet again.

  • [-]
  • hwarming
  • 9 Points
  • 20:59:47, 9 May

Sooo, killing a child and eating their organs is okay in "Blankland" because it's part of their culture, you have no right to bash them for it.

  • [-]
  • LegendReborn
  • 1 Points
  • 00:39:41, 10 May

Yes, ethnocentrism should be avoided but you can still criticize cultural norms of other cultures without going around parading your culture as the inherently superior one. There are mediums between going full ethnocentric and full cultural relativist.

  • [-]
  • [deleted]
  • 6 Points
  • 20:52:24, 9 May

[deleted]

  • [-]
  • Sikktwizted
  • 1 Points
  • 21:46:10, 9 May

You should definitely respect the culture of a people, but just because they have culture doesn't remove their ability to be wrong and incorrect. I suppose slaves should be acceptable in some countries because it is their 'culture' yes?

I will look down on any culture that discriminates against anyone for any reason.

  • [-]
  • Straw___Man
  • 1 Points
  • 01:20:33, 10 May

It's impossible to judge anything without biases. When there is no objective measure (and sometimes even then) bias will always have an influence.

  • [-]
  • AiwassAeon
  • 1 Points
  • 03:02:53, 10 May

I forgot that censorship and authoritarianism is a staple of Russian culture.

  • [-]
  • [deleted]
  • -1 Points
  • 23:49:55, 9 May

[deleted]