Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game Recruiting Center

May 7, 2009 -

Last weekend GamePolitics served up live Twitter coverage as anti-war protesters marched on the Army Experience Center.

The high-tech recruiting facility in Philadelphia uses PC and Xbox 360 games to attract potential recruits.

As we reported, seven protesters were peacefully arrested when they refused an order by police to leave. One of those arrested, Elaine Brower, the mother of a U.S. Marine, writes about the experience for Op Ed News:

I myself, was part of a group of protesters who donned death masks and the names of fallen soldiers and stood directly in front of the AEC, which was at that point surrounded by police...

It seemed to me that the recruiters were becoming a bit unnerved, and the police were becoming extremely impatient... since the AEC is open to the “public” many demanded to go inside, but weren’t allowed...

After only one warning, the police decided to aggressively arrest seven of the protesters who were wearing death masks, peacefully standing in front of the AEC and not blocking the entrance.  Taken to a distant precinct, the civil affairs Captain vowed vengeance by trying to charge the seven with a “misdemeanor in the third degree.”  After 6 hours in the most deplorable conditions, they were released to return to court in June...

What is happening right under our noses is a transformation of the way in which the military plans on re-wiring the brains of kids at a very young and impressionable age to turn them into silent killers.  By allowing anyone from the age of 13 to 18 to handle a machine gun, or use games that promote violence, it creates a generation that is wired to kill and think that killing is something that is easy and sanctioned. 

GP: My observation was that the police gave at least two warnings; this can be seen on the video footage I took at the protest. In any case, it seemed like the masked protesters planned to be locked up in order to make their point.


Comments

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

So I just read an article about her protesting the military base when her son was first deployed.  In this article it states her son was 17 when he joined the Marines which means that it would have required signitures from the mother and father to allow him to join.   Which means she was perfectly ok with it as long as they were giving her son things but when his obligation was called then it became a problem.  

Second,  She claims that her son told her that the militarys new policy in Iraq was to airstrike any building that has enemy fire coming from it even if US soldiers are inside.  I must have missed that policy when I was deployed.  A case of misunderstanding perhaps? Or just another Brower lie?

 

I think we should organize flash mobs that whenever they protest we all just show up and randomly start yelling I love pie anytime they try to say anything.  Just think about that.  There are millions of Pies out there that we aren't currently eating and that's a travesty.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

 She said the Air Support ROE was changed to any building with hostiles, including those with friendlies? Seriously?

Give me a fucking break.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

So I just read an article about her protesting the military base when her son was first deployed.  In this article it states her son was 17 when he joined the Marines which means that it would have required signitures from the mother and father to allow him to join.   Which means she was perfectly ok with it as long as they were giving her son things but when his obligation was called then it became a problem.  

Second,  She claims that her son told her that the militarys new policy in Iraq was to airstrike any building that has enemy fire coming from it even if US soldiers are inside.  I must have missed that policy when I was deployed.  A case of misunderstanding perhaps? Or just another Brower lie?

 

I think we should organize flash mobs that whenever they protest we all just show up and randomly start yelling I love pie anytime they try to say anything.  Just think about that.  There are millions of Pies out there that we aren't currently eating and that's a travesty.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Im all for protesting and such, but it seems this generation of protesters aren't very peaceful. I understand they were just standing there, yelling in a Megaphone, with a few people standing around in white masks, but If I was at that Mall trying to eat or shopping, I would've yelled at them to 'Shut the @%$# up!'

Not to mention Im sure people who work at the Mall, say the Panda Express gal, were probally getting rather annoyed as well. Basically, they should have tried an approach with a bit more tact and consideration for the public. Perhaps organizing with signs and everyone in the white masks standing around and inside the AEC for a few hours? Instead of being obnoxious for 20 minutes?

Again, Im neither for nor against the AEC. The Army needs troops, and they need to promote. Clicking into the popularity of Video Games was an easy choice, especially with the popularity of Military shooters. However, like the protesters, perhaps a little tact should have been used. Allowing kids as young as 13 to play (What Im sure is) M-rated game content ? Haven't we been trying to get Video Games out of the political bonfire by making sure kids not of age don't PLAY such content?

However, in the end it comes down to the dollar. And they aint going to shut down a Several-thousand dollar promotional tool that works because a few protesters 'Dont agree with it'. Unless this really, REALLY, tarnished the Army's appearance in the public eye. Which I don't think it did.

Every single person holds a different reality.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

I'm all for peace, but protesting the military isn't the way to do it. Free trade is a great way to do it. No way is a country going to attack another country who makes them rich. What always bothers me about these protest is the fact that most of those people if they got what they want and something bad happened the next day because the military is missing are going to clamer together demanding to know why there was no military in place to protect them.

Let me put that on my to-don't list.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

By logical escalation does this mean we stop teaching history?  Due to it promoting people fighting in the army ?

 

Also irregardless, irregardless, irregardless.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

LEt the army do what they do so they could promote their training to those who want to join the army.

If you don't want to join the army, then just don't join at all.

If you protest, you might be protesting something that allows you to chose if you wanted to go to war or not.

 

Before the days of Army recruitment, people were forced to go to war in the name of their country.

World War 1, World War 2, Korean War, Vietnam War anyone?

 

TBoneTony

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Sometimes these "Peaceful" protest are anything but. I remember about 3 or 4 months after going after the US declared "victory" in Iraq, that a few recruiting center, in the DC area, where vandalized and I think one had a molotov thrown throw it's window, by these "peaceful protest. And wasn't there one in I think New York or Pennsalvania that was bomb during the night?

Let me put that on my to-don't list.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

I liked how totally unbiased that write up sounded!

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

I'm confused by your sarcasm.  You thought this was an unbiased forum/site?

"HEY! LISTEN!"

"HEY! LISTEN!"

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

I was aluding... you know what, I got confused myself. Of course these people are going to Fox News it to make it look like they are the righteous fighters of truth, justice and the American way!

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

K, well, first of all, I object to the military using games to recruit. I think it's a bastardization of the medium. I also don't happen to believe that it would be particularily effective, though I haven't seen the recruitment figures. I also think it's dishonest to send the message to potential recruits that war is fun.

I also think that if a place is open to the public, that people should be allowed to be there. Those protesters have the right to congregate, as long as they aren't impeding or harming anyone else. I don't know if this is true or not, but it's my impression (at least) that in the last eight years it's become almost unlawful to protest against military recruitment.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

It was not in a place open to the public; it was in a private mall.  While malls do allow the public in, they are semi-public spaces at best.  You don't have a right to free speech and assembly if the owner decides it because he is not the government and is not bound by the constitution.  He does have the right to have the police kick your ass out or arrest you because you are on his property.  It's not that the laws have changed; it's that the military has gotten smarter about where and how they recruit.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Meanwhile, as army recruiters reach for new lows to fill in the ranks of the fallen in the Middle-east...

Jack Thompson's volatile spirit is unheard of so far... I suppose it's ok if the murder simulator is distributed by a group of people trained to kill... Right Jackie?

 

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Thing is, if she was arguing it was unethical to use Video games to recruit, then my sympathies might be a little more for her, but to say they are somehow 'programming soldiers to kill' is ridiculous, they are soldiers, was she expecting, flower arranging?

As for Thompson, give it time, if it gets enough Media attention then you can be sure to see him hopping on the Bandwagon, he no more believes games to be 'murder simulators' than I do, but he does know a good photo-opportunity when he sees one.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Not sure if my comment disappeared or if I forgot to submit it... weird. Anyway, there's some pretty messed up comments at the OpEdNews article - one of them even blames the military for Columbine and Virginia Tech.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Yeah Im sorry can we have some elucidation on the deathmask issue ?

 

Did these liberal hippy halfwits have permission from the families of the dead soldiers or ... what? Furthermore why in gods green earth would they disrespect the individual rights of these dead soldiers who clearly, irregardless of their families 'opinions', wishhed to serve.  Is descration of the dead acceptable to these people ?

Last time I checked desecration of the dead was the worst possible thing you could do. 

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Many Liberal hippies are the people who spit on soldiers and are even proud of their soft, weak lifestyle.  Soldiers represent much of what they hate- even though the military is a part of the government they so dearly want to wipe their ass and pay them free $$ every day. 

Likewise, Conservatives have some strange fetish over soldiers as if they are infallible superheroes- even though the military is part of the government they so dearly claim is the root of all evil.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

I don't think they're real, honest-to-goodness, death masks taken from the face of a deceased. More like plastic masks they bought at a five-and-dime store.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

*pet hate*

irregardless is NOT a word.  It is either irrelevent or it is regardless.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Don't worry... I also tense over that word use.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Call me callous, or a dick, if you want to- I'm still going to say this.

She's doing her son a disservice by acting like such a fool and outright lying in order to make hearts bleed and eyes cry just so people will take her seriously. She ought to be fucking ashamed of herself for resorting to this whining.

"OH, I was in prison for 6 hours- THIS is the kind of injustice my SON and all his military friends have to put up with- THIS is how cruel these recruitment centers are!" That's all I'm hearing.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

It did cross my mind that her son chose to join the army, nobody forced him, and yet she seems to want to blame the fact her son is an individual who made his own choices on the Army, rather than the fact that he is his own person.

Sounds, to me, like a mother who is bitter that her son didn't do in life what she wanted him to do, and is lashing out at the entire establishment for it.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

With an overbearing mother like that, who WOULDN'T want to join the military to get out of the house?

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Meh, she's probably disconnected from reality like Cindy Sheehan.  A lot of these people keep wishing it was the late 60s/early 70s to either relive their youth or get in on something they missed. Nevermind that they come off as nuts. They need shrinks.

 

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

I've also thought the same thing. There hasn't been an active draft in the U.S. since the Vietnam War. Every one of the servicemen and servicewomen currently in active duty voluntarily signed up to serve. And, I'd imagine, they gladly accept the U.S. taxpayers' money in the form of a paycheck and a host of benefits. But don't hardly no one wants to accept the possibility or the fact of catching a bullet in the head. Like they've never heard of the term "risk of doing business."

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Go to the Facebook fanpage for The Army Experience Center. Trust me. The conversations there are just as good as here!

DEATH MASKS!!!

She lost me at "death masks". WTF lady?

The only deathlike thing about that mask is the perceived putrescence; and that's only because it just plain stinks.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

I was just thinking; why the fuck would Ann Wright be a good speaker on the horrors of military service?  She's REMF through and through!  She never saw a lick of combat, what the fuck does she know about it?  It's like having Jack Thompson speak about professional integrity, its just silly.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

And you even know how to spell the woman's name correctly. Did you notice the protest group's press release spelt it "Anne?" 

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Yeah.  Probably because even they know how worthless she is. I've always said you're pretty low on the totem pole if people don't care to spell your name right in PR documents, especially at conventions and protests. Besides, like I said, if you want someone to speak on the horrors of war, get a real vet, not a rear echelon motherfucker.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

I can never quite figure these people out...

One minute they are complaining that games train the soldiers to be better at what they do, the next minute they are complaining about the number of casualities. Talk about wanting your cake and eating it...

It's like those 'drone' fighters, that are controlled from several kilometres away by remote control, this means that the human being is considerably safer than if he/she were actually in the seat of the plane, the fact that it is helping keep someone alive is bad somehow?

Now, considering the fact that Computer Simulations are mostly used for tactical training and to teach local customs etc to the troops, the whole complaint is amusing enough as it is, but it seems to me that even if it were true, that would mean these people would prefer a less well trained army that is more willing to put American troops in danger.

It's like the whole idea that games like GTA deliberately train people to be killers, and yet not one single source has EVER explained WHY these companies would want to train up an army.

Lots and lots of accusations and absolutely no explanations, that seems to be stock and trade of these people.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

"It's like the whole idea that games like GTA deliberately train people to be killers, and yet not one single source has EVER explained WHY these companies would want to train up an army."

Heavy metal artists asked more or less the same thing when they were accused ot telling their fans to kill themselves.

The horror ... The inhumanity ...

A whole 6 hours?  Really?  I don't know how anyone can come out of an experience like that and not be scarred for life ...

She doesn't seem to grasp that her "Public" protest happened to be taking place on "Private" property.  Open to the public does not give you the right to do whatever you want.  The property manager would have been within his rights to have every single protester charged with criminal tresspass if if he/she/they wanted.

Re: The horror ... The inhumanity ...

Alareth,

She and her protest friends DID know that they were on private property. That just pissed them off all the more.

Re: The horror ... The inhumanity ...

Yeah, seriously.  Where's the mall owner?  I'd be pissed off if people were protesting on MY property.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

The title of the article should be: "Protester LIES about her arrest at AVGRC"...

The cynical side of videogames (spanish only): http://thelostlevel.blogspot.com/ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com/

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Deplorable jail conditions. Spare me. I know folks who'll cut their right-hand pinky finger off for a chance to move out of their hovel in a Soweto township and lay up for a while in an American jail. It'll be the first time they've ever experienced air-conditioning and indoor plumbling or sleeping on bedding which wasn't made out of cardboard and newspapers or infested with bed-bugs. Please, spare me.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Ironically, they were probably in better sleeping conditions than many of the soldiers they are complaining about.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

"What is happening right under our noses is a transformation of the way in which the military plans on re-wiring the brains of kids at a very young and impressionable age to turn them into silent killers. "

I was introduced to real firearms when I was about 10 at summer camp, in the Boy Scouts, and the fact that my dad used to like hunting. Why haven't I been wired to kill? We aren't they protesting the Boy Scouts or summer camps which puts real guns into the hands of children?

I think their moral outrage has overwritten their common sense, if they had any to begin with.

 

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

I was shooting firearms at five, and I don't go out and shoot people.  Silent Killers my ass. 

But, much like PETA, these people lack sense and substance.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

A certain gray subtstance i ntheir head would be the one they're missing.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

"It seemed to me that the recruiters were becoming a bit unnerved, and the police were becoming extremely impatient... since the AEC is open to the “public” many demanded to go inside, but weren’t allowed...

After only one warning, the police decided to aggressively arrest seven of the protesters who were wearing death masks, peacefully standing in front of the AEC and not blocking the entrance.  Taken to a distant precinct, the civil affairs Captain vowed vengeance by trying to charge the seven with a “misdemeanor in the third degree.”  After 6 hours in the most deplorable conditions, they were released to return to court in June...

What is happening right under our noses is a transformation of the way in which the military plans on re-wiring the brains of kids at a very young and impressionable age to turn them into silent killers.  By allowing anyone from the age of 13 to 18 to handle a machine gun, or use games that promote violence, it creates a generation that is wired to kill and think that killing is something that is easy and sanctioned. "

I wouldn't let them protest inside the AEC either.  Would any of the protesters allow someone to protest in their place of work? Absolutely not. 

Also, they were warned twice, you can even see it on the video.  Nice falsehood there, Elaine.  What would your son have said to you lying to the public?  Also, deplorable conditions?  Are you shitting me?  Our prisons are some of the best in the world.  They should've just shipped them off to Thailand for a weekend to see a real prison.

Also, where did you find someone allowing 13 to 18 year olds to handle a machine gun?  Where was there even a machine gun at all in the AEC?  You mean the big hunks of plastic that look like machine guns?  If that's the case, where was your fervor over airsoft guns, the Area 51 arcade game, etc.  I nearly guarantee you, there is no functioning machine gun in that building.  I would also be willing to bet that no one under the age of 17 or 18 (they might let 17 use the AEC simulators with parental permission) has ever 'handled' the plastic machine guns, or been able to use the AEC to play a game that promotes violence.

God, these people are so full of shit.   

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

To be honest, handling the plastic machine guns is going to be no worse than nipping to the local arcade and having a game of House of the Dead 4 or Time Crisis 4.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Also, deplorable conditions?  Are you shitting me?  Our prisons are some of the best in the world.  They should've just shipped them off to Thailand for a weekend to see a real prison.

The funny part is I doubt they got anywhere worse than the booking area. 6 hours sounds just about right to me, to be the hang time required for the full booking process.

-Gray17

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

I agree. Six hours ain't even long enough for them to justify swapping out your street clothes for an orange jumpsuit and a pair of them rubber slippers.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game ...

Arrestee: Officer, you've got these handcuffs on my wrists too tight!

Officer: Relax. They're brand-new. You gotta give 'em some time to stretch.

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Oh no not "silent killers!"  That is so much worse than the loud kind! 

 

 

http://www.popularculturegaming.com

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

Hey, come on fellas, cut her some slack!  This was probably the highest moment in her life.  Bravely fighting the injustices of society, enduring suffering for their cause.  So what if she embellishes a bit?  It's got to sound good, or else what was the point of staging a protest that practically nobody cares about?

Re: Protester Writes About Her Arrest at Army Video Game

In our defense, her deliberately painting a false picture is the same as what they accuse the army of.

 
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