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The religious right think the new Star Wars game is way too gay

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The recently released MMORPG Star Wars: The Old Republic may soon allow for same-sex relationships in its fictional universe. So naturally, butthurt religious conservatives are arming their blasters.

Tony Perkins, in particular, doesn't want two lightsabers to touch. He says the decision is "star-warped" and will be bad for children. See, Perkins is the head of the Family Research Council a right-wing lobbying group dedicated to "Advancing Your Values," because, obviously, your values should be everyone else's too.

To give you a brief idea of who these Christian champions are, their lobbying organization meets the Southern Poverty Law Center's criteria for a hate group and they've in the past done their level best to link homosexuality to pedophilia. In light of that it's not exactly surprising that these winners would be leading the charge towards new levels of daftness (because the only thing more threatening than real-life homosexual bogeymen is virtual ones!). Though, to be fair, if you're a professional religious zealot, you have to find something new to be outraged by every day, Monday through Friday, and that's not easy.

But let's break this nonsense down. First off, I dispute the assumption that Star Wars wasn't already loaded with gay subtext. There's plenty of jaunty homoeroticism in there, and the droid-on-droid romance of R2-D2 and C-3PO is a love story for the ages. I also have a theory that while Chewbacca maybe referred to as a Wookie in the films, he's really what we on earth would call a "bear."

Though the game's designers played it straight in the initial release, they've since decided to roll out "additional romance options" for companion characters, to the chagrin of the FRC. What exactly "additional romance options" means is unclear. It could refer to the ability to have a same-sex marriage in game, or maybe to some romantic narrative scenes. I played an MMO in the tender days of my youth, and at that time, at least, they were largely defined by the ability of the players to determine outcomes, roam freely, and basically do anything they wanted in terms of their in-game interactions with other players. The freedom was exactly the point. This may all take place "a long time ago" and so forth, but if two male avatars or two female ones want to make the Bantha with two backs, there should be an emote for that.

So three cheers for "additional romance options!"

(Audio from Perkins' radio show is below if you want to have a good seethe and hear a shit-pile of terrible Star Wars jokes.)