An Ongoing, Erratic Diary
|1 August 2012, 9:30 AM|
|Cecilia Tan reminded me that in my WisCon GOH speech, I said that I expected we would see more social justice issues rising in the SF/F community in the next few years. For those struggling with the Rene Walling ReaderCon disaster, maybe some of the ideas in that speech would be helpful.
In case my position isn't clear, I also want to spell it out:
- I don't approve of zero-tolerance policies in general. But if there's one in place, it needs to be applied evenly and fairly. The time to revise it is not when there's a case on the table, especially a high-profile case, of a high-profile or popular person.
- It seems clear from the visible evidence that regardless of the policy issues, Rene Walling is a serial harasser, and it is appropriate to ban him from ReaderCon for life.
- I think, with regret, that the current Board of ReaderCon needs to step down. They have acted in a way that has destroyed a lot of public confidence and trust in the convention; if they care about its ongoing health, the best thing they can do for the convention is to let a fresh group take over.
- That said, it's very difficult to find committed volunteers to run conventions. If you care about this convention and are able to volunteer to help with it, now is a good time to make that clear to the concom, especially if you can make a serious time commitment.
- ReaderCon is a wonderful con -- I attended many years ago, and was invited to be a panelist again this year. If I hadn't already committed to three other major cons, I might have gone; I was seriously considering it. I won't be attending again unless Rene is banned. It is important to me that people attending ReaderCon (or any SF/F convention) be able to feel safe in what should be both a fun and professional environment.
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