Ah, the Caribbean… home to tropical drinks, sandy beaches, offshore bank accounts and now, a violent videogame roundup.
As part of a holiday push to get its students to avoid violent videogames, the Cayman Island’s John Cumber Primary School is organizing just such an event, in which violent toys and games will be collected and destroyed, this according to a story in the Island’s newspaper.
The school’s campaign against violent games also spawned a list—emailed to pupil’s parents—of games to avoid for the holidays. The list included Resident Evil 4, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, God of War, NARC, Killer 7, The Warriors, 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Crime Life: Gang Wars, Condemned: Criminal Origins, and True Crime: New York City.
School Principal Joseph Wallace stated, “Research has showed…that over time, when these kids play the video games constantly…it desensitises them to the act of violence.”
He added, “But there’s no off button in real life; there’s no restart.”
Cayman Islands Premier McKeeva Bush is also on board with the movement, pleading with parents to keep their children away from “the video boxes.”
A local Blockbuster Video store co-owner, Deborah McTaggert, expressed doubts that many games would be culled from the roundup, telling the paper, “I think you’d have to pry them out of the kids’ hands.”
She also commented on blaming games for real-world violence, saying:
If you have no relationship with your kids and they’re locked up in a room with violent video games, I guess you’re probably going to have some problems.
Do I think we can attribute this to video games? I mean, I don’t think the really violent games are good, and there are titles that I don’t sell (at Blockbuster). I personally don’t like horror movies…but if I don’t bring them in, will it stop the violence?
Perhaps the Cayman Island school drew inspiration from a similar drive put on in Germany this past October. Germany’s “Killer Game Drive” resulted in a small handful of games being turned in.