L.A. Times on Games & Immigration Debate

July 16, 2007 -
Do video games have a place in the current debate over immigration policy? 

Reporter Anna Gorman of the Los Angeles Times probes the relationship between games and immigration. Along the way she quotes Suzanne Seggerman, president of Games for Change:
Games are really good at exploring complex issues, and what issue is more complex than immigration?  ...A game can allow for a new perspective and, in some cases, new conviction.

Human rights organization Breakthrough recently partnered with New York City high-school students to create ICED! I Can End Deportation (screenshot at left) The game was presented at last month's Games for Change conference and will be released online later this year. Mallika Dutt, Breakthrough's executive director, said:
Especially for the age group below 35, online media has become a very central part of their lives. If we want to engage with these constituencies, we have to engage in the method and tools that make more sense to them.

University of Denver students, operating under a grant from mtvU and Cisco Systems, are working on Squeezed (video available) a game designed to raise empathy for migrant laborers. UD student Porter Schutz told the Times that members of the Squeezed team held diverse views about immigration:
It’s difficult to sort of rock the boat without vilifying anybody.

Harry Pachon, president of USC’s Tomas Rivera Policy Institute credited games with bringing the issue to those who might other wise pay little attention:
What this does is open up the world of the undocumented.

Gorman also mention the racist Flash game Border Patrol which appeared on the web in 2006. It's objective?
Keep them out... at any cost. 

Comments

@hayabusa

Not necessarily. There are a LOT of jobs given to illegals (as opposed to the euphemistic "undocumented") that people in our own country simply won't do. The very reason some places are so willing to hire illegals is that our own citizens don't want the jobs. I mean, would you want to pick tomatoes for 10-12 hours a day for minimum wage, just for example?

Now please don't take that as my defense of border jumpers. I personally believe that anyone who doesn't have the proper respect for our laws to immigrate legally should just stay put in their own country. But on the other hand, when did we get to the point that our own poor are too good for the type of work currently being offered to illegals? Maybe the whole thing can be traced to welfare...

Immigration is all fine and dandy, but I take a particularly dim view of illegal immigration. There were some stats on the Squeezed page about it, but I couldn't tell if they were defending it or not. Every job you give to someone in the country illegally is one less job available to a U.S. citizen.

Sounds like more liberal propaganda the education system is shoving down our throats.

I'm pretty sure you meant to use "its" as opposed to "it's" in that last part. As it stands, it seems like you're asking if Border Patrol is objective.

The objective is still the same, isn't it?

Could Border Patrol be a in poor taste dark satirical rant over the governmental inaction over immigration

Ever think that? must it all be ZOMG teh evil?


Once the ,entertainment news really needs to stop spinning things so the rapid sheeple dogs wont get worked into a fury...

Any sort of media should have the right to look into any sort of issue. That is the freedom of speech I fight for. To bad I lost mine on the dotted line

I myself am married to an illegal immigrant and have three kids with him. He is now finishing up a three year sentence in a federal prison for illegal passage into the country.Which I feel is unfair, and unjust. Illegals come here and do jobs that us as Americans feel are beneath us. Nobody here in the United States wouldnt even be here if it wasn't for Immigrants. Immigrants made America what it is. We are supposed to be the land of oppurtunity, yet we want to reject those that want to do better for themselves. Americans are now wanting the legal citizans here to not get the same rights as us. What is the big deal? If they are legal and do things by the book and pay taxes , then I dont see the big deal
 
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Goth_SkunkAnd at long last, I think I'm finally done.06/30/2015 - 3:08am
Goth_SkunkAnd if those progressive games fail to make any headway in the market, don't blame gamer culture for not being cultured enough to appreciate the product. Own up to the fact that the game either sucks, is not interesting, or both.06/30/2015 - 3:06am
Goth_Skunknor suggest that the games industry and culture is rife with toxicity because of it and needs to change for the good of the medium. There is room in the market for progressive games to co-exist with games like Hatred, not replace them outright.06/30/2015 - 3:04am
Goth_SkunkAnd if the overly violent content of most AAA games or the perceived mistreatment of women in such games bothers one, by all means criticize it, but do not under any circumstances suggest that it such content shouldn't exist or be promoted,06/30/2015 - 3:02am
Goth_SkunkGames, for the most part, let you do this! You can be the man or woman you're not. You can escape reality and immerse yourself in the experience. And that's wonderful! I play as female characters all the time in games I play, when the option is available.06/30/2015 - 2:59am
Goth_SkunkA choice that nature denied transgender people at birth! People don't undergo gender reassignment because they want to be transgender; they undergo gender reassignment because they want to be the gender they identify with!06/30/2015 - 2:52am
Goth_SkunkBut I think it gets silly when people start asking for the ability to play as a transgender protagonist. I mean, why would one do that? One usually has the option to create a character that's either a man or a woman, gay or straight. You have the choice!06/30/2015 - 2:50am
Goth_Skunkfirst two games, a move which was ultimately corrected in the 3rd game. By extension, Dragon Age has always had the option, and good on it!06/30/2015 - 2:45am
Goth_SkunkBut it certainly is good to see developers entertain the allowance of allowing the player to develop their protagonist to be homosexual if they want. The Mass Effect series was criticized rightly for not allowing a male homosexual romance plot in the06/30/2015 - 2:44am
Goth_Skunkand only just by the slimmest of margins. Homosexuality is sadly still a hot button controversy in the USA, which makes developing a noteworthy game with a hardcoded homosexual lead or theme a dangerous risk to take.06/30/2015 - 2:37am
Goth_SkunkThe United States is the largest single customer base for video games in the world, and it only just mandated by rule of its Supreme Court that marriage ought to be just as much an inalienable right for homosexuals as it is for heterosexuals,06/30/2015 - 2:35am
Goth_SkunkFor example, it would be difficult for a developer to produce a AAA quality game where the protagonist is hardcoded to be MtF transgender, and convince enough people to buy it in order to make it worth its production costs.06/30/2015 - 2:31am
Goth_SkunkNo Mecha, not woe unto those who ask for representation. By all means, ask and be represented. I don't have an issue with it, nor would I say anyone in GamerGate does either. But be reasonable about asking too.06/30/2015 - 2:27am
Goth_Skunkthat would've made Benedict Arnold raise a glass in toast.06/30/2015 - 2:25am
MechaCrashGamers are more than straight white men, but woe unto those who actually ask for representation!06/30/2015 - 2:24am
Goth_SkunkBut Games Journalism, who in the past has stood up for gamers and developers, when their hobby was under attack by idealogues and governments for being overly violent, suddenly switched sides in a move06/30/2015 - 2:24am
Goth_SkunkYet the media continues to push that narrative, and they will continue to do so until their medium dies out from obscelesence or when the old guard retires and is replaced by people who were raised by gamers, people who know the score.06/30/2015 - 2:20am
Goth_SkunkGamerGate, by my view, is far more diverse and inclusive that the purveying culture surrounding games journalism right now. The stereotypical gamer is a straight white male, but GamerGate has shown, time and time again, that this is not really the case.06/30/2015 - 2:18am
Goth_SkunkAfter all, you did just call it a "problem."06/30/2015 - 2:15am
Goth_SkunkAs opposed to setting the bar high, creating a culture clique that promotes exclusivity rather than inclusivity. Cronyism rather than diversity. Do you feel that inclusivity and diversity are just buzzwords to be used whenever convenient?06/30/2015 - 2:12am
 

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