Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

September 9, 2010 -

Phyllis Schlafly, founder of the “pro-family” Eagle Forum has authored a column in which she takes a hatchet to videogames, while attempting to outline the fight by both sides in the Schwarzenegger vs EMA case to rally state attorneys general to their respective squads.

A few of the descriptors used by Schlafly to portray videogames in her piece include: “extremely violent and addictive,” “polluting,” “increasingly realistic bloodshed,” “highly disturbing,” “heinous acts of terrorism” and “evil products.”

In case you hadn’t guessed it yet, Schlafly is not a huge fan of games. A sampling of her more inane arguments against videogames follow:

Some games are programmed to become more violent while the game is being played, and parents usually don't or can't play the games.

Brain research indicates that teenagers' brains, as well as children's brains, are still developing and may store violent images as real memories.

Virtually every school massacre can be traced to the young killers' addiction to violent video games. The video game industry reaps tens of billions of dollars in revenue and now even surpasses Hollywood in profits, revenues and influence.

It's time for families to make clear to their own state attorney general that the voters will hold them accountable for what they do about this problem of filling children's minds and memories with gory, criminal images.

The industry is asking the High Court to create a new type of free speech that would make it impossible to put any limit on this victimizing of children.

The Eagle Forum was one of the groups involved in lobbying Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtlef in late August, in an attempt to sway his as-of-yet-unknown stance on the matter.

Comments

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Phyllis Schlafly. What else ?

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Some games are programmed to become more violent while the game is being played, and parents usually don't or can't play the games.

All violent things get more violent as they progress. Even the bible.

Brain research indicates that teenagers' brains, as well as children's brains, are still developing and may store violent images as real memories.

Your religion teaches you that the many gory, horrific and loveless things perpetrated by your ancestors are also quite real and should never be forgotten. And thus they have been immortalized in psalm and prayer for all the children to learn or be damned to eternal hellfire. Thanks.

Virtually every school massacre can be traced to the young killers' addiction to violent video games. The video game industry reaps tens of billions of dollars in revenue and now even surpasses Hollywood in profits, revenues and influence.

Plainly wrong to its core. Virtually every "young killer" played violent games because, well, everyone plays games. This is a quantifiable fact that you can't bury your head in the sand forever about.

It's time for families to make clear to their own state attorney general that the voters will hold them accountable for what they do about this problem of filling children's minds and memories with gory, criminal images.

I think you overestimate your constituency. In fact, I think the overwhelming majority of American voters simply do not care, with a second majority coming out against your personal views and those with the same archaic concerns as you coming a distant third.

The industry is asking the High Court to create a new type of free speech that would make it impossible to put any limit on this victimizing of children.

It's not a "new type" of free speech; it's just free speech. About as free as the speech that allows you to prattle on about how their products are "evil", "immoral" and "acts of terrorism".

Does no one sue for libel anymore?

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

"All violent things get more violent as they progress. Even the bible."

I'd say the New Testament is quite a bit less violent than the Old, but yeah, it DOES have Revelation at the end.

"About as free as the speech that allows you to prattle on about how their products are "evil", "immoral" and "acts of terrorism".

Does no one sue for libel anymore?"

Huh? If it's free speech, it's not libel, and vice-versa.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

It seems there really is nothing new under the sun...

These are the same tired old arguments that have been hurled at every new form of speech before it became broadly accepted and thus too popular to challenge. "Unapproved" books, television, movies, Dungeons & Dragons, even rock and roll music had the exact same accusations levelled at them. It's pathetic that in over a century of attempted censorship, they can barely even be bothered to move the words around a bit.

About the only classic smear left out here is saying that videogames are tied to devil worship. Of course, that accusation doesn't quite carry the sting it used to. Maybe we are making some progress after all...

It is all a symptom of the real, unaddressed social issues. When faced with all of the problems in modern society, people are looking not for solutions, but places to level blame. It is easier to say "this is your fault," and pat yourself on the back for fingering the sinister villain, than it is to actually take a long hard look at the real issues.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

"Some games are programmed to become more violent while the game is being played,..."

I'm fairly certain this isn't the case.  The violence levels are usually pretty consistent within each game I've played (though I'll be the first to admit that doesn't come anywhere close to a scientific study).

"...and parents usually don't or can't play the games."

This confuses me.  I can see how parents don't play the games – I doubt I'll ever get my parents hooked on Halo, though they could certainly watch – but how is it that the parents "can't play the games"?  The only ways I can think of is some age-related physical or mental disability, and that seems pretty unlikely.

"Brain research indicates that teenagers' brains, as well as children's brains, are still developing and may store violent images as real memories."

Cite sources, please.  Not that I'm saying this is an outright fabrication, but claims like this need to be supported by actual peer-reviewed scientific research.

"Virtually every school massacre can be traced to the young killers' addiction to violent video games."

This, on the other hand, is an outright fabrication.  The perpetrators of these crimes don't really seem to like games any more or less than any of the millions of law-abiding, well-adjusted students in our schools.

"The video game industry reaps tens of billions of dollars in revenue and now even surpasses Hollywood in profits, revenues and influence."

Fair enough.  And...?  If "revenue" and "evil" are, indeed correlated, why are you going after the game industry and not, say Wal-Mart, or "Big Oil"?

"It's time for families to make clear to their own state attorney general that the voters will hold them accountable for what they do about this problem of filling children's minds and memories with gory, criminal images."

The government and the courts are not a substitute for responsible, attentive parenting.  Nor should they be.  Please stop passing the buck.

"The industry is asking the High Court to create a new type of free speech that would make it impossible to put any limit on this victimizing of children."

As I understand it, any new kind of speech defaults to "free speech".  The courts don't create "new type[s] of free speech"; they create new types of constitutionally unprotected speech.

Not to mention the fact that "free speech" can encompass a lot more than would seem desireable.  Under the law, I could give my little brother a copy of Lady Chatterley's Lover without breaking any laws.  You could easily call me a reprihensible person for that – and I would certainly be uncomfortable about doing it – but there's nothing illegal about it.

As an aside, the MPAA's rating system has absolutely no government backing.  It's enforced entirely through the cooperation of the studios, distributors, theaters, and the ratings group.  It might be easier for everyone if these lobbyists sought to work with the industry rather than against it.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

She hates us for our freedoms

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Most anti-American terrorists do.

---

With the first link, the chain is forged.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Eagle_Forum#The_ERA

Here you can find more info about this fanatical woman.

What concerns me is that if the CA law passes than she more likely than not has plans to push even stricter legislation.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

wow... that was scary....

I think anyone who is in favor of rape is kinda batshit in my book.  She almost sounds like a Gorean...

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Give them anything, even a little ,and they will continue to take until nothing is left.  I won't be surprised if she'd see it as finishing the jobs people like Frederick Wertham and Tipper gore started.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Yet another example of how the right is batshit insane. Would it be stretch to say she's worse than JT?

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

And the left has always been a shining example of peace and understanding, right?  Chairman Mao?  Adolf Hitler?  Joseph Stalin?

Oh, that's right.  ONLY the right can be insane, because you are actually unwilling to admit that bad ideas come from the left, too.

---

With the first link, the chain is forged.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

And straight to Godwin.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Although you have a good general point in that there are morons all across the political spectrum, only 1 of your 3 examples could meaningfully be described as being on the left.

 

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

No, they all are. All of them rose to power under a platform that those with the money cause all of the common people's problems, and when we take their power and money away, life will be better for all of us.  That's a very leftist position.

---

With the first link, the chain is forged.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

What a gross and misleading oversimplification.  Leftists are free to hold all kinds of ludicrous ideas as well as sensible ones, the only thing that you really need to be considered on the 'left' is a desire for economic egalitarianism.  It's easy to claim to want that, but very few dictators have made genuine steps towards it.  I dont remember there being an awful lot of legislation genuinely aimed at equality under some of the people you mention.


 

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Nor was there a whole lot under President Clinton.  Does that make him a far-right conservative?

---

With the first link, the chain is forged.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

 No.  But I didnt say it did, so what is your point?

Edit: BTW, since you bring up Clinton I'm guessing you're from the US.  Maybe its worth pointing out that I'm from the rest of the world, where many of us consider both US political parties to be to the right, just that one of them is very slightly farther to the right than the other.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

No, it is not. 

 

That is a possition the right keeps insisting the left has.  It is about as valid as saying that all three of those leaders were right wingers since nationalism and authoritaranism are 'right possitions'.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Last time I checked, facists and nazis laid on the far right of the political spectrum. But it's been a while since I checked. It coulda changed since then.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Her group gave JT some kidn of "Freedom award" and she has followers, so in a way, yes.

 

Edit: Meant award.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

We should have an image of Sam the Eagle (muppet censor) for any future articles related to the Eagle Forum (try to find one of him doing a facepalm-he does it quite frequently on the show).

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Thanks. GP admins, take note and consider using this. Rather fitting, if you ask me.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

"Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames"

This is 'news'? If the headline was "Eagle Forum Founder Defends Videogames" THAT would be news.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

So someone who's mentally stuck in the 50's utopia image writes a blast piece about modern society. Big shock there.

All I can to say that is if she wants the world to go to that premise then she can take the first step. Oh yes, that's right. That means she has to be a happy little homemaker that doesn't have an opinion to herself. Works for me.

 

(No, I do not mean that everyone should follow that premise, just pointing out how blatantly flawed her perspective is.)

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

not only is she a hypocrite in that regard, but I'm pretty sure she's worn gold and spoken in a church at least once. hell, every time she opens her mouth, she violates a biblical command.

岩「if Phyllis Schlafly wants to undo Women's Rights, she should lead by example and get back in the kitchen」

岩「…I can see why Hasselbeck's worried about fake guns killing fake people. afterall, she's a fake journalist on a fake news channel」

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Did you take a gander at her photograph? The woman's physically stuck in the 50s. The bouffant hair-do and the pearls? Did the Jackie Kennedy look make a come-back?

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Yeah, I noticed. But physical appearance is based on the minset, so her mind HAS to be stuck in the 50's for her to make her physical appearance like that.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Theres a reason why you failed to pass anti-gaming laws in Utah. Its because you don't know what your talking about.

http://www.magicinkgaming.com/

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

I wonder what she really meant by "VIRTUALLY every"? Perhaps in her own virtual reality, she's right. If you follow her logic, we should all be Amish because every school massacre can be linked to the use of electricity.

Because EVERYONE uses electricity.

Similarly, just about every student plays video games. I remember how people were blaming DooM for school shootings. Why didn't they try counting the number of normal computer-literate students who HADN'T played DooM rather than simply making a list of all the bestselling products the shooters happened to have, which was mostly the same crap everybody else had.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Lies About Videogames

Phyllis Schafly should get her head out of her ass since that's the only place she got those lies from.

And I agree that the video game industry should take a page out of Vince McMahon's playbook and sue her worthless ass and her piece of trash group for slander and libel like McMahon did to the Parent Trash Cult.

Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Hornets, Jack Thompson can geaux chase a chupacabra. Hell will stay frozen over for quite a while since the Saints won the Super Bowl.

Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Pelicans. Solidarity for the Saints = No retreat, no surrender. 2013 = Saints' revenge on the NFL. Even through the darkest days, this fire burns always.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Lies About Videogames

Second. Let them poke a hornet's nest.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

The industry is asking the High Court to create a new type of free speech that would make it impossible to put any limit on this victimizing of children.

I wish someone to sue this woman and her group for slandering. Too bad that videogame industry seems more worried with piracy instead. The industry needs to realize that these persons are a real threat because they want to impair their rights to produce whatever they need to produce.

------------------------------------------------------------ My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship): http://www.darkknightstrikes.deviantart.com

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

That statement doesn't fit any legal definition of slander.  First of all, it's written, which would make it fall under libel, not slander -- but it's not libelous, either.  It's referring to an industry, not a person, and it's a statement of opinion, not a false claim of fact.

You're advocating a frivolous lawsuit against someone's protected free speech just because you happen to find that speech offensive.  Please take a moment to let the irony sink in.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Lies About Videogames

While the statement falls under libel laws, it's still libelous, as the idiot is claiming(or trying to claim) her statements of opinion as "facts". And considering that there is a group that represents the industry as a whole(the ESA), they could sue and it wouldn't be "frivolous" considering that Vince McMahon sued the PTC years ago primarily over the PTC soliciting donations in their campaign against WWE over the Lionel Tate case and won a settlement when Tate admitted in his appeal of his life sentence that he never watched wrestling at the time he murdered a six year old girl half his size in cold blood.

One other thing, corporations are considered a person for Constitutional purposes as a collective of persons and an industry is also a collective of persons.

Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Hornets, Jack Thompson can geaux chase a chupacabra. Hell will stay frozen over for quite a while since the Saints won the Super Bowl.

Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Pelicans. Solidarity for the Saints = No retreat, no surrender. 2013 = Saints' revenge on the NFL. Even through the darkest days, this fire burns always.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Lies About Videogames

You put "facts" in quotation marks but I don't see the word anywhere in her piece.

"Polluting the minds of an entire generation of children" is an opinion.  "Highly disturbing" is an opinion.  Her references to "points" are illiterate but not libelous per se; "Some games are programmed to become more violent while the game is being played" is too vague to pin down to any specific entity or company.

I could go on.  It's distinct from the McMahon case because the PTC made a specific, and demonstrably false, claim that Tate was watching WWE when he killed that girl.  Schlafly, "idiot" or no, has the good sense not to say anything that concrete; the closest she comes is "Virtually every school massacre can be traced to the young killers' addiction to violent video games."  That's still an awfully tough sell as a statement of verifiable fact, and if it were considered defamation then 75% of the mainstream press would have been fined by now.

"One other thing, corporations are considered a person for Constitutional purposes as a collective of persons and an industry is also a collective of persons."

But an industry is not a corporation.  And it's much harder to get a conviction for defaming a corporation than an individual.

She knows what she's doing and, odious as it may be, it's her First Amendment right.  She's not breaking any defamation laws.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Giving that this group of, people defended Jack Thompson and gave that forever ex lawyer a "freedom award", this is hardly surprising.

 

"The industry is asking the High Court to create a new type of free speech that would make it impossible to put any limit on this victimizing of children."

This had been possible and will continue to be possible. It's called being a parent. If a parent finds a game their kid wants that they find objectionable, they can say no, and ignore it if their kid is screaming, and maybe communicate with other parents. What this law does is take ONE bit of power away from parents at best and at worst makes them far lazier and more complacent.

"Some games are programmed to become more violent while the game is being played, and parents usually don't or can't play the games."

For one, she knows nothing of the game development process. As for parents not being able to play them, yes they can, otherwise perhaps she can explain how my father has been a gamer alongside me and my brother since the NES.

"Brain research indicates that teenagers' brains, as well as children's brains, are still developing and may store violent images as real memories."

And I highly, HIGHLY doubt she's goign to tell anyone what these studies are, or they're the same exact ones debunked time and time again.

"Virtually every school massacre can be traced to the young killers' addiction to violent video games. The video game industry reaps tens of billions of dollars in revenue and now even surpasses Hollywood in profits, revenues and influence."

Then I hope she can explain school shootings before video games ever came along, or the fact that youth violence has gone down, or is she tellign the FBI, one of the nation's biggest law enforcement angencies, that they're wrong.

As for them surpassing Hollywood in influence, well, if that were true then how did these laws come to pass in the first place? No one is trying time and time again to ban violent movies.

"It's time for families to make clear to their own state attorney general that the voters will hold them accountable for what they do about this problem of filling children's minds and memories with gory, criminal images."

My family and I are al ltoo happy to do our own thing and not indirectly stick outr noses into the business of other families thank you.

 

Ok, I'm done. Her sone runs Conservapedia so her entire family is nuts.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Not that I'm particularly against religion but...

Almost all of those arguments can also apply to the Bible with little or no adjustment:

“extremely violent and addictive,” “polluting,” “increasingly realistic bloodshed,” “highly disturbing,” “heinous acts of terrorism” and “evil products"

------- Morality has always been in decline. As you get older, you notice it. When you were younger, you enjoyed it.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Just don't say that about the Koran.  You'll piss people off around here.

---

With the first link, the chain is forged.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Given that the Quran and the Old Testament are pretty much the same events...

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

And New Testament.

If you believe muslims, the Quran actually contains more of the New Testament then the Bible does..

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

This is why courts have introduced all sorts of weasle words to first ammendment cases over the years like tradition and value.  Any time a new set of first ammendment restrictions go into place and cries of 'but this will ban <insert well regarded work> too!', the work gets an out for having 'value'.

This is the core of modern obsenity laws (and the new 'no child involved' kiddy porn laws)... courts can sidestep outrage over the laws by arbitrary deciding if a work has suffient merit to be excluded.... thus you never piss off anyone important.

Without these blank checks, the Bible would indeed be illegal in this country... it would have no prayer of passing the rules if it did not have such a following.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Unfortunately, even as a Catholic, I agree. The Bible has an enormous amount of violent content in it.

People have also used it as an excuse for committing heinous acts but I don't hear nor want a call for a ban of the Bible. Same with video games.

Re: Eagle Forum Founder Blast Videogames

Seems like a fun person, aside from sounding like a pale echo of john bruce and seeming as violent in her own right as she claims Games to be.   She is consistant in her stance though.  Almost have to admire that.  Almost.

 

 
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