I might even go a step further to postulate that the actually professionals are ok, but it's the people riding just below that edge that are the real problem.
There's definitely something to this thought, and it's not specific to gaming. There are "bad apples" in every walk of life, even professional pursuits; it's that by their very nature, professionals are more visible than the average person. And whenever a "professional" anything does something bad, there is a legion of apologists saying some variation of "it's just part of the game/business/scene/fnord". And then there's people like me, who respond with some variation of "But it's still wrong."
This was the excuse when Todd Bertuzzi tried to murder Steve Moore in the middle of a hockey game. It's the excuse when John Daly does something criminal, misogynistic, or both, again
. It was the excuse when Latrell Sprewell choked his coach, and the NBA forced his team to reinstate him. It's the excuse now, as we discover just how many NFL teams paid bounties to their players for injuring opponents.
Of course you can say what you want, and the Constitution guarantees that it is legal to do so. It also guarantees the right of more open-minded people to criticise you, and ostracise you, and shout you down.
The fact that "it's the way it's always been" means nothing
. For thousands of years human sacrifice existed in the Americas. (Yes, I know that it wasn't anywhere near as common or as widespread as was once thought. Just humour me a moment.) Yes, at the time it wasn't considered awful or horrific by the cultures that practiced it. Would we accept it now? Hells NO
My wife plays more video games and is arguably even more of a "nerd" than I am. How many of this tool's defenders would have the courage to say this to her face? And then stand there and listen to her response? I thought not.
And one final note. This tool did not apologise. "I'm sorry if anyone was offended" is NOT. AN. APOLOGY.
If YOU can't accept you did anything wrong, then stand by what you said. If you can't, then back the heck down and think about what you did.