The Monsters Are Coming to the Ballot Box

Check out this crazy story:

The Republican Party of Maine has revealed that Democratic State Senate candidate Colleen Lachowicz has a secret life that she’s been hiding from voters. Drug use? A Swiss bank account? No, sadly, even worse: she has a scary-looking World of Warcraft character.

“Colleen Lachowicz spends hundreds of hours playing in her online world Azeroth, as an Orc Assassination Rogue named Santiaga,” reads a flyer sent to voters in the district. It’s identified as funded by the Maine Republican Party.

“I love poisoning and stabbing! It is fun,” the flyer quotes Lachowicz as saying. The candidate is apparently a regular commenter at DailyKos, a liberal blog. And the Maine GOP has mined the site looking for what it regards as damning comments. Most of Lachowicz’s remarks were posted in 2009 or 2010, most likely before she began her current campaign for office.


Lachowicz uses salty language in some of the comments, but someone needs to sit the Maine GOP down and explain the difference between fantasy and reality. Every day, millions of people engage in simulated video game violence without committing any real-world violence. By suggesting a World of Warcraft hobby should disqualify someone for office—and implying that voters are too dumb to tell the difference between virtual and real violence—the party is only embarrassing itself.

I don’t even know where to start with that one.

Obviously, there’s the bizarre equating of playing a game with real life, as if the candidate’s fondness of playing an orc rogue means she really is both a rampaging assassin and an inhuman, green-skinned, fanged monster. That’s just crazy delusional to the point where I question whether they should be allowed to roam outside of the insane asylum, much less running state political parties.

There’s also the way the flyer seems to be trying to say that Lachowicz shouldn’t be in office because she’s — horror of horrors — a NERD. Which is the kind of thing most of us, gamers or not, have been suffering through since junior high. Doesn’t matter if you play video games, read comics, play D&D, or another stereotypically nerdy hobby, or if you’re just a normal person who isn’t a member of the in-crowd, there’s always someone who wants to declare you socially unacceptable and deem you a pariah.

But nerdiness isn’t the horrifying curse we used to think it was. Millions of people play World of Warcraft. Almost 200 million play other online video games. Trying to be the party of the Cool Kids vs. the uncool geeks is a little foolish when the uncool geeks outnumber you, are more mature than you are, and may even be more valuable as consumers.

At any rate, in this case, I’d much rather be the orc.


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