It's pretty much what Tolkien tried to do in LOTR. From his own discussion in his nonfiction *HIS* real-world war experience was that his own army had halflings, orcs, and all sorts of people good and bad. And he wanted a "clean" fight, one where all the good guys are on THIS side, all the bad guys are on THAT side, and there is no ambiguity whatsoever which side is which.But aside from personal history of contact with this crusade, I think "redirecting our natural racism towards fictional beings" is a weird idea. And Rich isn't saying playing a hack and slash makes you a horrible murdering psychopath. He would like it if you admit your murder hobo might not qualify for paladinhood, though.
There IS a place in fantasy for that.
Although from what is chronicled here, perhaps D&D rulebook are tilted too much that way.
In this scene from a game I play -- Return of the king stage 9: Courtyard -- The enemy has broken into the city and is busy killing as many helpless civilians as they can right in front of me. It's my job to save as many as I can before falling back to the next defended position.
It's not that I have anything against orcs or trolls in particular -- if I passed 'em in a field having tea I wouldn't particularly care. But orcs and trolls murdering innocents right in front of me -- that I take *strong* exception to. Not because I have anything against orcs and trolls as such. Because I don't like armed bullies murdering people. And if there were human enemies -- or elvish enemies, for that matter -- on the field doing the same, I'd slot them the same way.