Orcs is currently trending on twitter. From what I can gather, it's backlash after someone took a page from a 5e handbook stating that orcs were bloodthirsty due to genetics, and declared it racist. Since then, there has been a huge onslaught of (mostly white) dudes stating that orcs aren't racist.

This has been discussed better in a pair of articles by James Mendez Hodes that I will link below, but I'll just say these two things.

First, I get that on the surface, as a white person, it may not appear that orcs being these bloodthirsty marauders is racist. However, there is a lot of context around this, and you absolutely should not ignore that. Instead, listen to PoC when they talk about this, as it's a very important conversation happening about the history of D&D. Orcs are a core part of D&D and fantasy, and to willfully ignore this history is an insult. It's something that exists, and could be done better.

Second, there are ways to think about orcs better in your campaigns, and I encourage people to share them. As some know, I shy away from violence in my games, and try to rethink monstrous races as being much more nuanced. I generally don't use orcs much in my games, but when I do, they are fitness geeks. Orcs are all about being strong, showing how strong you are, and inspiring others to be strong. They come across as aggressive as often, their way of showing affection is inviting you to a friendly boxing match- but they want to help you learn how to be stronger. That's how they form friendships, through training and improving, teaching you how to get back up after you've been knocked down, and also recommending you eat more seared meat to increase your protein intake. A lot of this was inspired by Cid the Hungry, a half orc barbarian I played some years ago who was a bit of a himbo. I had been out of shape for most of my life, but was starting to look at taking fitness seriously, and playing him helped me take on the role of someone who was strong. Because of him, I realized that fitness was something I could pursue- years later, I'm an avid runner, and it was because of thinking of a half orc as someone who was very much into strength.

Anyway, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the subject on twitter, were I'm @rollforkindness!

Links:

https://jamesmendezhodes.com/blog/2019/1/13/orcs-britons-and-the-martial-race-myth-part-i-a-species-built-for-racial-terror

https://jamesmendezhodes.com/blog/2019/6/30/orcs-britons-and-the-martial-race-myth-part-ii-theyre-not-human