A good read Austin, thank you. It's refreshing to see someone recognise that serious issues like racism in gaming are not just simple binary oppositions, but, like life generally, a gradient of black and white (no pun intended), with a hell of lot of grey (I'm British, so please don't comment on the Queens English) in between.
Referencing American cultural imperialism, recognising that it is actually a thing, but also understanding that isn't the actual problem in this case, is brave, and gives me belief you can approach a subject objectively. I think the furore around sexism in gaming could also do with critical reflection from both sides. The reality is, we really need to understand how people, how society, parses and portrays these issues before we can make an informed critique of them in games.
It looks like you're trying to do just that, and I'm glad you are doing so.
Lastly to stay on topic, I would also add that writers, critics, bloggers, whatever people define themselves as, are not only trying to influence developers. They are also trying to influence their readers, the consumers. Indeed, changing the buying publics perception of a game or an issue within it, is of course, an indirect way to effect change on a developer. If you can convince a consumer not to buy, then a developer may change their future creation based on that. Money talks and all that.
Thanks again man!