If I could pinpoint the single most common argument for the unilateral destruction of the Forsaken as a whole, it would be that they were not any society or group of people on their own, but merely “unnatural”, abominations, inhuman and, most importantly, were not structured enough under a single “legitimate” identity for there to be anything wrong with eradicating them specifically.
Well, let’s operate for the next five minutes under the assumption that genocide is wrong.
Genocide is defined as the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group.
I really thought that it had been enough to define the Forsaken (obviously) as a national group, because they form a nation, or as a racial group, because Blizzard literally defines them as such. However, for the purpose of this short piece, let us presume that it isn’t enough to label the Forsaken as a nation (or that the point still stands if their nation is dissolved) and disregard the idea of the Forsaken race.
An ethnic group is not simply a group of people sharing similar biological features- in fact, members of an ethnic group do not have to share a common race. An ethnic group is composed of people sharing certain beliefs, habits, customs, and norms owing to their common background. That background can be distinguished by and arise from a specific religion, language, geographic position, historical background, and other factors.
Language, religion, geographic position, or historical background. The Forsaken share an obvious enough historical background- this needs no elaboration. If we wanted to consider a common religion, the Cult of the Forgotten Shadow is gaining ground, and appears to largely or only welcome the undead. Gutterspeak has been adopted as the language of the Forsaken, to the point that its original origin is often forgotten. The majority of the Forsaken dwell in and/or feel an ownership of much of the area of former Lordaeron.
It isn’t that the Forsaken “can” be classified as an ethnic group, for their meeting of some traditional qualifications or resembling one. The Forsaken simply -are-, indisputably, a definable group of people sharing such a significant sociocultural background that they form an ethnicity.
One of the defining traits of an ethnicity is that it is not only unifying but also, divisive. Members of one ethnic group are often excluded from others, and what you ARE often defines what you are NOT. This, too, reflects on the Forsaken as a people as, unlike some other members of the undead, they are not welcome into individual racial factions of the Alliance or Horde, regardless of their former membership.
Even if you object to the idea of the Forsaken nation, even if you reject the concept of a Forsaken race, the Forsaken form a unique ethnic group.
And the deliberate extermination of an ethnic group- irrespective of what some members of that group have done- is genocide.
This was a rather impressive read. Add your opinion if you’d like, this is one of the few posts I feel I don’t have much say in other than ” Ooohh viewpoints, Shiiiiny ” So I won’t be reblogging and commenting on anything said.