Friday, January 12, 2018

Unfunded Mandates (Tradecraft)

What an exciting week! The meme of the week is there's a disgruntled individual insisting all Magic judges be background checked as pedophiles, basically insisting the judge network is a front for a ring of child molesters. To add insult to injury, one of our "customers," a self identified white nationalist and self expressed wack job, who we've repeatedly asked not to use his speaking hole, called out my store as one in need of investigation.

The thing about witch hunts is if you believe in such a thing as witchcraft, how can you ever really know? If you looked at the legion of Magic judges, roughly 12,000 and looked at the percentage of the population known to be sex offenders of any sort (.23%), you would have roughly 27 offending judges. What we know is there have been three bad judges and they've been banned forever, thrown out of the program. But witchcraft is pervasive and insidious, so that just means there are more we don't know of. Right? Right???!!! What about the other 24?!!!

Don't get me wrong, I think background checks for judges is a good idea. However, being pushed to do checks because one nut job has unfairly and without warrant painted an entire community as criminals, is not the best motivation to do so. So sure, why not. Wizards of the Coast, go ahead and pay the money to background check your judge community.

What, it's not your community? But they're your judges. What, the courts say judges exist in the limbo of "volunteer" even though that designation doesn't exist in labor law? Alright, I see. Oh, what now? You think I should background check them? And what, I should background check all my employees? Oh, you don't think I should do it, you demand I do it?  Did you learn nothing from your judge lawsuit?

That's exactly what Wizards of the Coast said today. These stores that run organized play, that have these "volunteers" running events must now background check everyone, employee and judges (let's not argue if these groups are the same, right?) at their own expense. And to think, they thought they were done fighting this in court.
As part of our commitment to safe and inclusive spaces, tournament organizers and retailers will be explicitly required to conduct background checks for all staff (as permitted by applicable law). This includes CFB Events' Grand Prix, local store events like Friday Night Magic, and professional events like the Pro Tour and World Magic Cup as well as convention play run by Wizards.

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