It’s OK to hate Star Wars. It’s not OK to harass Star Wars creators

Kelly Marie Tran is Rose and Daisy Ridley is Rey in STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER.
Kelly Marie Tran is Rose and Daisy Ridley is Rey in STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER. /

Fans aren’t required to love every Star Wars story or project. But harassing the people responsible for creating Star Wars content is unacceptable.

Here’s what I’m not going to do in this post.

I’m not going to name individuals or groups of people responsible for what’s happening.

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I’m not going to link to or reference specific tweets that say hateful and/or disrespectful things.

I’m not going to give anyone attention they don’t deserve.

But I will say this: If you’re showing any disrespect toward any Star Wars creator online or in person right now — whether it’s an author, director, executive, or actor — you have no place in this fandom. Period.

You have every right to like or dislike any part of Star Wars. You’re free to praise what you love and scream about what you hate.

But you are NOT allowed to harass Rae Carson or any Star Wars creator for telling a story. The fandom will NOT tolerate this behavior.

Sadly, all this is nothing new. Ahmed Best barely survived it. George Lucas sold his company partially because of it, though we can’t blame toxic fandom fully for that choice. Kelly Marie Tran has spoken out about it.

And now a veteran Star Wars author responsible for adapting someone else’s story into a book is probably a few awful tweets away from being bullied completely off of Twitter … before the book has even been released to the masses?

Fame and “high-profile jobs” in entertainment and publishing, for example, do come with some tough consequences. That’s understandable.

But NO ONE — regardless of their job title or the projects that happen to have their name on them or in which they appear onscreen — deserves to be talked down to, harassed, or threatened because of their work.

How do we stop people from harassing Star Wars creators? We don’t. Because the more you ask a child to stop doing something you’ve already told them not to do a dozen times over, the more they’re going to continue the forbidden behavior until they get a reaction out of you.

Instead, the best we can do is come together and do everything we can to let Star Wars creators know how much we appreciate them and their work. It doesn’t have to be loud. It doesn’t have to be in direct response to a tweet or message.

We can’t fight the hate. We can, however, save what we love. Whatever that may be. The point of fandom is supposed to be that different people can like and dislike different things without tearing each other apart. Welcome to the internet, I guess.

We can’t completely ignore the hate. But we can drown it out. We can create a fandom that’s built on positivity, acceptance, and hope — one that can disagree without fighting, made up of people who don’t all have to like the same things about Star Wars to love being Star Wars fans.

Others can come in and try to destroy what we build, but we don’t have to let them.

I sincerely look forward to reading and reviewing Rae Carson’s The Rise of Skywalker novelization. If you want to do something to support her, please consider, at the very least, pre-ordering the book. And it doesn’t take too much time to send a few words of encouragement her way.

Maybe the Force be with the Star Wars community as the relentless hate continues. Remember: Hate is loud, but love will always win. Always.

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How do you let your favorite Star Wars creators know how much you appreciate them and the work they do? If you haven’t done that lately, now’s a great time to change that.