Amilia St. John Has Some Words for Her Father’s Sexist “Toddler Meltdown” About Gaming and Tech
To catch you up, Alex St. John, one of the original pioneers of Microsoft’s DirectX platform and founder of WildTanget Software, wrote an opinion piece over on VentureBeat a few days back basically saying that anyone who expects a 40-hour work week in gaming (or even compensation for overtime) just has the wrong attitude—oh, and he made sure to point out women’s “victimology psychosis” on his website as people became understandably upset over his opinions.
Naturally, his daughter, Amilia St. John, a woman in tech herself—a front end developer at Energy Circle—who’s not too fond of her father, took issue with this. So, she wrote a great rebuttal to run down just how thoughtless he was being, made all the more perfect by the fact that she, too, took a non-traditional path to her career, but she appreciates the good fortune inherent in her success instead of using it as a way to feel superior to other people. Here’s a sample of the elder St. John’s opinions on women in tech (which, by the way, don’t stop at women and include plenty of racism and ableism, too):
Any woman entering the tech industry has it made! Sadly the women we do get in high-tech who are raised in the US are often fatally compromised with victimology psychosis before they ever reach the work place (salt mine). The ones we get often fall short of their potential because they are so focused and concerned about their gender (shackles) that they often can’t conceive that there could be any other reason that they struggle at their jobs.
If you were raised to have a handy acceptable excuse for failing, such as “it’s because I’m a girl” and you accept it, then it becomes impossible for you to ever become great, because it’s always easier to blame others when you face hardship in your career. Even if it’s TRUE, even if discrimination is a factor in your environment, it’s a disastrous cycle to ALLOW yourself to embrace it.
Amelia, of course, rejects all of these “vile” assertions and points out something all too important (among lots of other great criticism): learning to develop a thick skin and work through (disproportionately unfair) adversity may well be valuable to a single person in the crappy world we live in, but it’s not going to ever solve diversity problems to make a better world as a whole. Sadly, I’m not entirely surprised that someone like Alex St. John would be unable to grasp the idea of a person choosing their actions not only for their own good, but for the greater good of society as a whole. Luckily, people like his daughter exist.
(image via Jaromir Chalabala on Shutterstock)
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