And Here Comes The Video Game Backlash Due To The Norway Tragedy
from the tragic dept
We already discussed how the tragic situation in Norway is already being exploited by some politicians to try to ratchet up security theater, but it may impact other issues as well. In the 1,500-page manifesto that the madman, Anders Breivik, posted online before beginning his rampage, he notes that he used Modern Warfare 2 for “training” and “simulation.”
I just bought Modern Warfare 2, the game. It is probably the best military simulator out there and it?s one of the hottest games this year. ? I see MW2 more as a part of my training-simulation than anything else. I?ve still learned to love it though and especially the multiplayer part is amazing. You can more or less completely simulate actual operations.
Separately, he talks up the value of using World of Warcraft as a “cover story” for why he was busy all the time, and notes that he did actually play WoW for a while to “isolate himself from the ‘consumerist’ world in preparation for his attacks.” I’m at a bit of a loss as to how playing a commercial game like that isolates one from consumerism, but Breivik does not appear to be particularly big on logic.
But, of course, as with past tragedies involving people who played video games, this has only given new ammunition to those who push the moral panic that violent video games are evil. That article notes that the website “Conservapedia” is using this incident to call for the reversal of the recent Supreme Court ruling that laws banning sales of violent video games are a First Amendment violation. When I looked at the site, it was highlighting a stupid quote from a USA Today editorial about how evil violent video games are, predicting that the next tragedy would involve someone who “was first addicted to harmful video games.”
That’s an interesting spin. It’s also ridiculous. There is no indication, whatsoever, that Breivik was “addicted” to these video games. Or that he was driven to do any of this because of the video games. There is no indication that without these video games he wouldn’t have carried out these attacks (or other attacks). He had clearly decided to carry out such a massacre long before Modern Warfare 2 existed.