Tyler Blevins has addressed past accusations of sexism in a new interview.
Blevins, who goes by his streaming name ‘Ninja’, was recently given a profile in the New York Times. During the chat he touched on some subjects close to him, and some that had previously raised issues with the media.
Blevins courted controversy in 2018 when he admitted he “doesn’t play with female gamers”. The quote was in relation to rumours he feared would circulate if he was seen with other women online. Many grew concerned that his stance sets women apart as unequal in a professional setting, reinforcing a network of powerful men excluding women. At the time, his supporters criticised the media for taking his words out of context.
The accusations of sexism that came from this quote were addressed in his NYT interview. “Accusations are what made me say that about female gamers,” he explained, “I was like, I’m going to do anything in my power to make sure that no one can even start a rumor or make YouTube clickbait videos: ‘Ninja is playing with this person a lot lately. They’re flirting. Here’s a clip.’ You know how to make that never happen? You don’t let it happen! That’s what was going through my head.”
However, his latest comments were not entirely opposed to his earlier assertion, stating: “Of course a guy and a girl can be friends without getting intimate. But it’s like, temptation, man.”
Blevins was also keen to talk about his experiences interacting with gamers, many of them negative. “I don’t regret anything I’ve done,” he asserted. “I could teach all these kids talking shit, but when you reply to them, they’re like, ‘He said my name!’ Their name is 69fartsniffer, and you read their name, and their next comment after they roasted you is them giggling like a little schoolgirl. Like, ‘You noticed me!’ It’s the worst.”
He went on to explore themes of parenting, claiming that if you want to know ‘who your kid is’ you should “Listen to him when he’s playing video games when he thinks you’re not.
“How does a white kid know he has white privilege if his parents never teach him or don’t talk about racism? If they’re gaming and their first interaction with racism is one of their friends saying the N-word and they have no idea what it is.”
He went on to say that it shouldn’t be the job of streamers to teach children and young viewers these values. Some commentators pointed out some clashing viewpoints, such as this Twitter user who quipped, “not his job to actively teach your kids about racism but totally ok to passively teach them to be sexist”.
Not his job to actively teach your kids about racism but totally ok to passively teach them to be sexist https://t.co/jQEfanYW7G
— Galarian Holly Green (@winnersusedrugs) January 25, 2021
Ninja once found himself in hot water after saying a racial slur on a livestream, claiming he was ‘tongue tied’.