The practice of bombarding women with geek tests before accepting them is what he is referring to.
It happens all the time including in the now closed thread about their new designer, Kate Welch.
It is refreshing to see this attitude from WotC and it has been there from the start of 5e. They don't want toxic people in their game/community.
Are you seriously suggesting that we have to dispense with the distinction between singular and plural in order to avoid "oppression and hatred and bigotry" and some kind of threat every day? You're really going to suggest that keeping that singular/plural distinction is oppressive?
If so, you've lost your damn mind.
Don't you dare.
"Y'all" is plural.
"All y'all" is, um, lots of plural.
Funny, I couldn't find the phrase "human rights" once in that entire
pile of drivelessay. Maybe your'e confusing two different things?
Or maybe you're playing a semantic game, suggesting that the basket of protections we refer to as "human rights" are not actually "rights", let alone "natural" ones, and therefore devoid of value?
If you're seriously saying that we should feel free to treat other humans like dirt because a clever rhetorical argument undermines the idea that rights can be natural, I take pity on your soul. Human history has been defined by a deep-rooted instinct in the oldest parts of our brains to look for ways to distinguish "us" from "them" to justify killing/robbing/enslaving the thems. What makes some of us better than animals is that the newer parts of our brains (sometimes) override that instinct.
The people Mearls was talking about, in his "gatekeeping" tweet, the "oppressors", are the people who are using the activity of controlling (and definitely limiting) access to RPGs to target people from specific demographics.
The way you speak in absolutes and hyperbole suggests that maybe you've already dug your heels in on this issue, and that your questions are rhetorical. (But still I persist.)
No, a puppy doesn't die every time somebody refuses to use 'they' in the singular.
I'll admit the singular use feels a little grammatically awkward to me every time I see/use it. But you know what? It doesn't actually make my life any worse, either.
And there's a whole segment of our population...you know, fellow human beings...who feel that the lack of an appropriate pronoun to describe themselves contributes to the isolation and bigotry they've suffered their whole lives. They (plural) feel strongly that it reinforces the popular misconception that gender is purely binary, that you're either completely one or the other, and that by not fitting into that false dichotomy it opens them up to vicious discrimination. Structurally it's really no different from nasty racial epithets: labeling propagates vicious discrimination.
And even if that's false, and there's no correlation/effect at all, there is absolutely no denying that our society craps on those people. If they believe that this small sacrifice will help alleviate that, then fine.
As somebody at the extreme end of privilege on just about every metric, the least* I can do is tweak my grammar a little bit to accommodate a group that doesn't have my advantages. And those who begrudge them that are a far, far bigger problem in the world than a little bit of grammatical drift in our language.
*Oh, and I can vote! And make campaign contributions! Yay!
No one was gatekeeping, it was just a silly tweet. Move on people.
What I don't agree with is the idea that not using the preferred pronoun is oppressive.
No, we don't. I suppose sometimes it happens by accident, but Southerners call one person "you," a group of people "y'all," and more than one group of people "all y'all." As in, "You (the person I'm speaking to) really played a great game, I'd like to congratulate y'all (your team) on winning the game, and invite all y'all (everyone at the park) over for the 4th, we're having hot dogs and beer.... Southerners use y'all in the both singular and plural forms...
Yeah, my point was that as "you" became singular (replacing "thee") there was a grammatical hole left where a plural 2nd person pronoun ought to be, this "y'all" became a thing.