After the recent events in England, I decided not to do a tribute to piece but instead have a rant about a subject that really gets under my skin. So excuse me for a moment while I get my soapbox ready.
Right I’m all set:
When England was plunged into anarchy and chaos it was only a matter of time before the grey brigade went looking for a scapegoat to blame it all on. After all, it has nothing to do with the worldwide recession, the lack of jobs, or the fact that it is just scumbags running wild. Oh no its none of that how could it be, it’s because of video games, like GTA. When some psycho went on a shooting rampage in Norway, it is because he played WoW.
So my question is – What games were the likes of Ted Bundy, Ed Gein, Hitler or Pol Pot playing before they decided to take there “virtual world” and mix it with reality? Were they “victims” of society and circumstance, or were they just completely fucked up people to begin with?
Since humans crawled for the primordial sludge, we have always been looking for others to take responsibility for our actions. We need someone or something to point the finger at. It makes us feel better and helps understand how certain situations can happen.
A little yellow man said it best “I didn’t do it”. He just needed to finish off that sentence with the “the game/movie/song/devil/budgie, made me do it”. That would have given the main stream something to shake their heads and tut at and the grey brigade could have been outraged shouting “down with this sort of thing” and “won’t someone please think of the children”.
In relation to the riots there is a better argument to be had against the news channels covering the event “live”, with reporters on the street telling people where the police weren’t! Come on people think about it! And now there complaining that the sentences handed out are too harsh… OK, now they are really taking the piss! Unfortunately the entertainment area has always been an easy whipping mule, from books to the silver screen all forms of media at some time or another have a dark past and comments like this do not help:
“I can’t understand where their energy for these riots is coming from. We live in this age of violence – and I don’t care what other people say: Brutal TV and brutal video games are a reason for this pointless violence as well.”(Noel Gallagher)
Something my dear old gran once said to me springs to mind when I hear stuff like that, and no its not “shut up you twat” (she was a hard woman my old gran), its people in glass houses – shouldn’t throw stones! We live in a (relatively) free society, but there has to be some sort of rules to protect the vulnerable and I have no personal issue with that. Games and Movies are age restricted just like alcohol and tobacco, which is fine. That in mind I think it is fair to say that just because a twelve year old suddenly plays an ’18′s’ game he isn’t going to go for a good old rampage out on the streets hyped up on the old Ultra-Violence. But does it cause a form of desensitisation – or is it just harmless fun? Or is it for another reason entirely?
Manypeople out there have a flat screen or monitor in the corner of their living room – this is also the ultimate babysitter for noisy annoying snot-nosed kids. Many people don’t really care what is on it as long as the kid sitting in front of it is quiet. This is where the age restriction, parenting and responsibility goes out the window and this is where the problems begin!
For example in a previous life I used to work for a high street games shop and refused to sell a thirteen year old boy an over eighteens shooter (as in line with story and government policy). Only to be confronted by a very irritate mother demanding to know why I had not sold their child the game. After pointing out that the title in question was over eighteens and her son was not over eighteen and that legally I could not sell it to him – the silly cow bought it for him anyway ( I was going to ask her for id but thought I might have been pushing my luck a bit).I still wonder to this day if she would have responded the same way if the local off-licence refused to sell him a flagon of Cider?! Wake up parents!!
So where does this all end? Do we start looking at banning all forms of entertainment because it might lead someone who might be a little unhinged or bored to begin with, to suddenly go off on one and do something nasty? Who are we trying to protect here ? What’s the first to go? How about the 24hr News Channels? You want to see humans at their worst – just watch the news! There’s enough violence and cruelty there to get anybody going, but there might be a final funny bit before the weather which makes everything OK… int!
Wait I have a better idea, let’s close down all the museums and art galleries. After all, they contain dark subject matter and weapons that were used to kill and torture people - That might send someone over the edge… maybe. No wait we also need to ban books, newspapers anything with printed word just in case someone reads something and goes mental, the ‘words’ made them do it. I bet John Lennon never thought the book ‘Catcher in the Rye’ would be the final nail in his coffin… but it was – did you ever read it? It’s compleatly harmless, but it flicked a switch in one nutters brain, then Boom, boom – he killed a Beatle. What about the Internet? All types of information and media at your fingertips, that has to send some meat head over the edge – quick find the power source and pull the plug.
Video Games are not the problem, Movies are not the problem and Music is not the problem! Will I tell you what the problem is? It is us! The people who see scumbags spray painting a wall or robbing an old lady only to walk by thinking, “fuck that, it’s not my problem”. Well my friend I’m afraid that it is and it should be! As the looters go through the courts it’s not only the “poor and downtrodden” that are getting banged up, it’s also the professionals, the college graduates, the “so called” more educated part of society. So what made them do it? Surely they can tell the difference between a video game, a work of fiction and reality cant they ?? Whatever it is it is certainly not video games! A game did not make you put in a shop window and run off with a pair of Nike’s, a game did not make you chop up your neighbour’s cat and a game did not make you roam around an island and shoot a load of innocent people, you did it because you’re a Moran! Simple as that. On that note I’m off to play a violent game, watch a horror film and listen to some really loud death metal – while I still can.
It takes two parents to produce a child but it takes an entire village to raise an idiot.