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Activision's 'Trans' Bullets in Call of Duty

Celebrate PRIDE month... by going on a mass-shooting spree!

~Activision, probably

Alright, I have to ask...


Who The FUCK thought this was a good idea? Honestly? Step up, name yourself. Let the community know that you want this kind of shit in gaming. You know damn well the attention this move was going to get. Hiding behind the pride shield doesn't work anymore to excuse atrocious actions.


Activision has recently introduced 'trans-colored' bullets in Call of Duty, colored with the blue, pink, and white of the transgender pride flag. This move has sparked some serious debate and controversy, with reactions ranging from praise for inclusivity to accusations of pandering and concerns about potential negative impacts.

The addition of these bullets has drawn criticism from several quarters. Critics like myself would argue that this kind of symbolic gesture could embolden a small, EXTREMELY unstable segment within the transgender community.

...And then we have Alyssa Mercante, an activist posing as a journalist for Kotaku, expressing outrage on Twitter over any of the backlash, dismissing the concerns as unfounded and emphasizing the importance of representation in gaming.

...Because of course she'd take that stance.

However, many critics argue that this stance overlooks recent incidents involving transgender individuals and mass shootings.

The Debate on Twitter

The debate gained further traction when @Grummz highlighted several instances of mass shootings involving transgender individuals:

  • Colorado Springs shooter - trans

  • Denver shooter - trans

  • Aberdeen shooter - trans

  • Nashville shooter - trans


...just to name a few recent ones. The ones played down by mass media and not given attention due to how they did not fit a specific "narrative".


Grummz's tweet suggests that "several" is an accurate descriptor for these incidents, suggesting that Activision's move is ill-timed and inappropriate, especially considering the company's ongoing legal battles.

He mentions an additional concern that the legal team suing Activision could use these facts against them, portraying the addition of 'trans' bullets as a potential risk factor or a sign of insensitivity... But we'll get back to that in a bit.


Calls for Removal vs. Freedom of Expression

Many folks, including Grummz, have called for Activision to remove these skins immediately. They argue that the inclusion of 'trans' bullets is not only pandering but also potentially harmful. On the other side of the debate, supporters see nothing wrong with these "festive" bullets, viewing them as a step towards greater inclusivity and representation in the gaming industry. WTactualF.


For those who advocate for freedom of expression, the issue is complex. While they support the right to representation and inclusivity, there is also a concern about the potential impact on individuals who may be mentally unstable. The question arises: Is this move by Activision a genuine effort towards inclusivity, or is it a poorly thought-out gesture that could have unintended consequences?


The Legal and Social Implications

Activision is already facing legal challenges, and this controversy adds another layer of complexity. The company's intentions might be in the right place, aiming to support and represent the transgender community. SidAlpha on Twitter downplayed that concern, mentioning other factors were involved with the lawsuit @Grummz brought up, so that may not actually have any impact or be a serious cause for concern for the video game industry on the whole.

However, the backlash and the potential for legal repercussions cannot be ignored. The critics' concerns about the timing and appropriateness of this move are valid, especially in a climate where social and legal scrutiny is intense. You never know.

In the end, Activision's decision to include 'trans' bullets in Call of Duty (among a slew of other "Celebrations" for being full of PRIDE) has opened up a broader discussion about representation, inclusivity, and the responsibilities of game developers.


While it was once widely thought that supporting and uplifting marginalized communities was essential, the tide is turning. Now, more than ever, important to consider the broader implications and potential consequences of such actions, especially when dealing with an audience of people that have displayed a history for being mentally unhinged.


As the debate continues, it remains to be seen how Activision will respond and whether they will adjust their approach in light of the controversy.


While I am all for freedom of expression from devs, this choice may have taken it a bit too far...


~Smash

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3 Comments


Glorifying mental illness with "trans-colored" bullets. 🤦‍♀️🙄


Just another day in Psychoville.

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What did Activision mean by this?

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hizo64
hizo64
Jun 03

Was this used in Nashville? Geez the messaging?!?!

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