(OOC) I Have A Dream: The Challenge

A friend of mine is a recovering WoWtard (my definition is someone who’s played it, hers is someone who likes it, and she insists she only goes on to be in contact with friends, so she barely fits the definition if at all). She’s bright and even though she is avoiding EVE for some reason, she returns to the great unwashed lands of… whatever they call it… with a surprising begrudging manner. However, today she takes pride in her community, and the reason is amazingly not due to the mad jester known as Leeroy Jenkins. It is due to a player named Zyron and this gem that she found on the official forums:

Five score years ago, a great Paladin, in whose symbolic shadow we stand specced Retribution. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Healadin slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of captivity.

But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Retribution Paladin is still not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Retribution Paladin is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Retribution Paladin lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Retribution Paladin is still languishing in the corners of a raiding society and finds himself an exile in his own land. So we have come here today to dramatize an appalling condition.

In a sense we have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check. When the Blizzard wrote the magnificent code of the World of Warcraft and constructed the games classes, they were signing a promissory note to which every player was to fall heir. This was a promise that all men would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of leet epics.

It is obvious today that the World of Warcraft has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her Paladins of Retribution are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, Blizzard has given Retribution Paladins a bad check which has come back marked “insufficient funds.” But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. So we have come to cash this check — a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of raid spots. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind Blizzard of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of spec justice. Now is the time to open the doors of opportunity to all of Elune’s children. Now is the time to lift our World of Warcraft from the quicksands of spec injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.

It would be fatal for Blizzard to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of the Retribution Paladin. This sweltering summer of the Retribution Paladin’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Two thousand eight is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Retribution Paladin needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if Blizzard returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in World of Warcraft until the Retribution Paladin is granted his raid viability. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our game until the bright day of justice emerges.

But there is something that I must say to my Paladins who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.
We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Retribution community must not lead us to distrust of all Holy Paladins, for many of our holy brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny and their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone.

And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, “When will you be satisfied?” We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the raiding guilds of our servers. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Retribution Paladin’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Retribution Paladin on Mannoroth cannot acquire a permanent raid spot and a Retribution Paladin on Dark Iron believes he has nothing for which to raid. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Alterac Valley, go back to Arathi Basin, go back to Warsong Gulch, go back to Eye of the Storm, go back to the battlegrounds and duels of our fair Azeroth, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.

I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the World of Warcraft dream.

I have a dream that one day Blizzard will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all characters are created balanced.”

I have a dream that one day on the green hills of the Arathi Highlands the sons of Retribution Paladins and the sons of Holy Paladins will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the realm of Alter of Storms, a desert realm, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four characters will one day play in a game where they will not be judged by the spec of their class but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day the World of Warcraft, whose players’ lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little Retribution Paladins will be able to join guilds with little Holy Paladins and walk together as sisters and brothers.
I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Light shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.

This is our hope. This is the faith with which I return to the game. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our game into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to play together, to struggle together, to raid together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

And if World of Warcraft is to be a great game this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of Hillsbrad. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of Blades Edge. Let freedom ring from the heightening peaks of Hyjal!

Let freedom ring from the snowcapped mountains of Northrend!

Let freedom ring from the curvaceous mushrooms of Zangarmarsh!

But not only that; let freedom ring from the Stone Mountain of Blackrock!

Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Alterac!

Let freedom ring from every hill and every molehill of Arathi Highlands. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every zone and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of Blizzard’s children, Retribution Paladins and Holy Paladins, Warlocks and Mages, Priests and Druids, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Retribution Paladin spiritual, “Free at last! free at last! thank the Light, we are free at last!”

Anyone who has ever taken a history course in grade school should recognize one of the most epic speech wins of all time, and while it’s probably didn’t take too much grey matter to bend the words so that orcs and night elves could applaud at it, it no doubt took a serious effort and investment of time.

However, we, as proud and powerful capsuleers, can not let the lowly WoWtards one-up us yet again. So I say, we should rewrite this speech for ourselves! And not just for all of EVE, but for different empires and alliances. For different professions and callings.

I’ll do my part, and I hope others join in with me!


~ by psychediver on 04/26/2010.

One Response to “(OOC) I Have A Dream: The Challenge”

  1. Mmmm, I see what you’re thinking of here.

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