Opinion: On Banning Music, Movies, and Video Games

January 13, 2011 -

Another editorial on violent media has made its way to the Internet by way of Sandiego.com's Pop Goes The Culture Blog.

While the author admits he has not played video games since the days of Pong and Atari, he makes some interesting points about music, movies, talk radio, and video games.

First he talks about how the media claims that the Tucson, Arizona killer "got fired up listening to angry talk radio programs." He calls this "incredibly silly logic" and believes that people who listen "to Rush Limbaugh – and you yell at the radio, or you call in and agree with him" it gives you an outlet to express your anger.

Next, he talks about music and the repeated calls to ban it. He recalls a teenage friend whose mother wanted him to get rid of all of his rock albums because they contained satanic music if you played them backwards. Fast-forward to the 80's when a few teenagers killed themselves after listening to heavy metal (Judas Priest and Ozzy Osbourne). He points out that, in the absence of metal, perhaps these teens would have killed themselves after listening to Sonny and Cher or classical music. Would politicians want to ban this music too, he ponders.

Next he talks about Mafia II and the talk in Europe about banning the game. That talk comes from Sonia Alfano, whose father was a Sicilian journalist that was killed by the mafia. He compares Mafia II to a scene in the 40-Year-Old virgin where one of the main character's odd dates drives drunk:

Just imagine sitting in the theatre, as everyone laughs wildly at that scene – and you lost a family member to a drunk driver. Should the studio have considered that before keeping the scene? Absolutely not. We’d end up with no movies, songs, or video games.

While he takes a long time to get to it, his point is that if we ban everything we think is offensive or even dangerous, we ended up with nothing. Consumers and parents in particular can make those decisions with their wallets, not by having politicians inch us further into a nanny state where every form of media is a trigger, and therefore too dangerous for us or our children to have access to.

Here is how he ends his column:

If video game makers are pulling in millions, they aren’t going to change things; but it’s one of the few things adults do have control over. You can decide what video games they bring into the house.

If you feel Mafia II is violent and you don’t like the language, don’t buy it. If your family was killed by the mafia, well…you probably represent .0005% of the population. I’m sorry for your loss, but the world doesn’t revolve around not offending your family.

Comments

Re: Opinion: On Banning Music, Movies, and Video Games

Re: Opinion: On Banning Music, Movies, and Video Games

as for the arguement about stuff that is satanic when played backwards, isn't the lord's prayer backwards also satanic?

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: Opinion: On Banning Music, Movies, and Video Games

My favourite quote :

"In the 80s, when a few teenagers killed themselves while listening to heavy metal (Judas Priest and Ozzy Osbourne) – those same debates cropped up again.

Well, if metal wasn’t around, those same teenagers might’ve killed themselves listening to Sonny & Cher records (bad example; you hear enough of Sonny Bono, you’d want to kill yourself)."

Not video-game related, but I lol'd.

Re: Opinion: On Banning Music, Movies, and Video Games

Bingo, this guy hit the nail on the head. It's so refreshing sometimes to see a non-gamer speak up for games to show that there are still some people in this world who aren't media-following sheep.

Re: Opinion: On Banning Music, Movies, and Video Games

Amen.  Nobody has the right to go through life never being offended by anything.  :P

 
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MonteThough from a business side, i would agree with the article. While it would be smarter for developers to slow down, you can't expect EA, Activision or ubisoft to do something like that. Nintnedo's gotta get the third party back.02/28/2015 - 4:36pm
MonteThough it does also help that nintendo's more colorful style is a lot less reliant on graphics than more realistic games. Wind Waker is over 10 years old and still looks good for its age.02/28/2015 - 4:33pm
MonteWith the Wii, nintnedo had the right idea. Hold back on shiny graphics and focus on the gameplay experience. Unfortunatly everyone else keeps pushing for newer graphics and it matters less and less each generation. I can barely notice the difference02/28/2015 - 4:29pm
MonteON third party developers; i kinda think they should slow down to nintendo's pace. They bemoan the rising costs of AAA gaming, but then constantly push for the best graphics which is makes up a lot of those costs. Be easier to afford if they held back02/28/2015 - 4:27pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2015/02/28/the-world-is-nintendos-if-only-theyd-take-it/ I think this is a interesting op-ed, but yeah it kind of is stating the obvious.02/28/2015 - 2:52pm
prh99The government probably doesn't need an app, but I was think more along the lines of a company that was going to sell the collected info. “If you're not paying for the product, you are the product” sometimes even if you pay.02/28/2015 - 1:50pm
E. Zachary KnightWhat better way for the government to keep track of you than to get you to install an app that lets you insult the government.02/28/2015 - 11:03am
prh99No, but I looked it up and it's basically spyware. Their privacy policy says their apps tracks among other things your location and browsing habits via cookies.02/28/2015 - 8:20am
Ryan RardinHas anyone here heard of an app called iCitizen? It's basically Yelp for politicians.02/28/2015 - 5:16am
Andrew EisenAh, not linked in the way you (and everyone else) want and expect. That's true.02/27/2015 - 10:06pm
Matthew Wilsonthey are not linked in a way that tracks purchases though. the fact that they have to send a code for the other system shows that they are not linked in the way it counts.02/27/2015 - 9:39pm
Andrew EisenAccounts are already linked. Have been for quite a while. Also, Mario vs. Donkey Kong was announced as a cross-buy title during last January's Nintendo Direct.02/27/2015 - 9:25pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://www.vg247.com/20…/…/27/olli-olli-3ds-wii-u-cross-buy/ I wounder if this is a sign that Nintendo may finally link accounts across the 3ds/wiiu in the near future.02/27/2015 - 9:18pm
prh99http://www.romanoriginals.co.uk/invt/70931?colour=Blue The dress does comes in white and blue but both have black lace and a sheer back top, I don't see gold or brown. 02/27/2015 - 8:54pm
ZippyDSMleeDungeons was a so bad so good game to me so I been keeping up with its sequel which will more of a Dungeon Keeper clone. As for pre order out of 7 preorders I was not burnt by 2... Add my contempt of most of modern game design.Ya I have all kinds of hurt.02/27/2015 - 8:40pm
MechaTama31I don't even want to know...02/27/2015 - 8:22pm
ZippyDSMleeFun? I can do fun…. I think LOL. Dungeons 2 is on preorder but not via steam... >> Hell I am breaking all kinds of personal butthurt rules to even THINK about pre order...02/27/2015 - 8:12pm
E. Zachary KnightHad some fun discussions about that dumb dress on Facebook. I opened the original picture in GIMP and sampled the colors and determined them to be Blue and Gold. People still say I am wrong.02/27/2015 - 7:41pm
ConsterTime for something completely different: #teamwhiteandgoldllama!02/27/2015 - 7:27pm
ZippyDSMleeAndrew Eisen: I'll try. ^^02/27/2015 - 5:40pm
 

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