Columbine was a great tragedy. I know. 2 disillusioned kids killed some of their classmates. Blame it on parenting. Blame it on high school social ladder oppression (to be truthful, as a victim of this type of oppression, I believe that to be by far the most important factor in triggering Columbine). But whatever you decided to lay blame on, don't lay it on computer games.

I see that kind of article all the time. Computer game violence, blah blah blah, cause violence in teenagers by vividly depicting graphical violence, ya da blah. Apparently teenage minds are so fragile and malleable that a simple computer game can make them think the violence is all real and it is perfectly OK. I think not. I watched Aliens when I was 7, grew up desensitized, and I have yet to commit a single murder.

Oft-quoted games linked to violence include: Doom in all incarnations, Quake (again, in all incarnations), the game Postal (OK I concede that game is a bit off the normality scale, but it sucks anyways so it doesn't matter), just to name a few. The game Soldiers of Fortune, which is extremely graphic in nature, is on the media's newest hitlist.

The thing is, the violence in computer games are so fake, no person can ever link it to real life. You see, no amount of computing power can render graphics that look like real life at the speed of a computer game. Doom is so pixelated the enemies look like blocks. The only games that have tried to use real life video are called FMV (full motion video), but those are pre-sequenced, not really interactive games. They also suck.

Hey, vulturish media mudslingers! You want real life-like violence? So real its uncanny? Go watch TV. Go write articles about movies like Natural Born Killers. Young children and teenagers see a heck of a lot more violence on TV than in games, so leave them alone.

Besides, they are so fun! So, one more word about computer games causing violence in teenagers, and I'll blow your head off with my shotgun. Just like in fucking Doom! No I'm just kidding.

I don't think seeing violence, whether in TV, video games, or even in real life can cause the viewer to become violent. People love to ignore the context of the violence. Will playing as a marine escaping a Nazi concentration camp and shooting Nazis in self-defense cause me to go shooting defenseless innocent high school students?

Well duh, of course not.

And even if a game or movie involved a student shooting other students, I hope that any child over 5, and most certainly 18 year olds like Eric Harris have been taught enough to know that shooting real humans is BAD.

And if they haven't been taught that? Then you're gonna have a scary situation on your hands no matter what that child's hobbies are.


Preaching to the converted is fun and easy... you're practically guaranteed votes!

In April, 2001 a class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of several families of the victims of the Columbine incident.

They seek punitive damages in the amount of ... get ready for it ...

FIVE BILLION DOLLARS

The list of defendants in the suit is an impressive one. AOL Time Warner, Sony Computer Entertainment, Nintendo of America, Sega of America, id Entertainment, and GT Interactive Entertainment are some of the companies listed in the suit as sharing a measure of responsibility for what happened.

"Absent the combination of extremely violent video games and these boys' incredibly deep involvement, use of and addiction to these games and the boys' basic personalities, these murders and this massacre would not have occurred,'' allege the plaintiffs.

Okay, let's look at this from a different angle for a minute. Say the boys spent all their time watching the fun and rowdy violence found in ... ohhh, say The Dukes of Hazzard, instead of playing Doom (and, apparently, amassing a rather large arsenal underneath their parents noses). Now lets say that instead of wearing trenchcoats the boys went on their little spree wearing Daisy Dukes.

Would the families then sue the cotton industry? Levi Strauss? AOL Time Warner?

If there's $5,000,000,000 to be made ... you bet your ass. The day a lawsuit like this doesn't sound like moneygrubbing to my ears is the day a parent (or bully, or parent of a bully) gets named as a defendant.

Until then ... the killing will continue.


Eidos, a smaller named defendant in this lawsuit has had all charges dropped against them, without prejudice.

Seems the people in the suit were going after Eidos because they published Final Fantasy 7. The game had been found in the assailants Sony PlayStation, thus ... Cloud and his gang must have held some measure of responsibility for Columbine!

However, during discovery, it was "discovered" that there aren't any guns in Final Fantasy 7. Thus, Eidos should be excused from any further proceedings.

While I'm sure Eidos could have mentioned this to the plaintiffs, who can fault them for not mentioning ... The Sister Ray?

Which is nothing but a city-sized piece of artillery in the game named Final Fantasy 7. It was used (and a most noble and just use, to be sure) to fight against a robotic terror from the deep, one of a series of creatures called WEAPONs.

Not weapons.

WEAPONS

I wonder how much Eidos paid under the table. I wonder if they rue the day they ever heard the name John Romero.


Now the suit, in toto, has been dismissed. And rightly so, sez I. Our justice system can work when it wants to.

You know, I don't go usually of off emotional tangents like this, but I just watched an episode of Boston Public tonight, and I am really, really getting sick of the mass media making people like me, people like us, into the villains.

It's really fucking ironic, it seems, that those who are "victimized", who suffer or have suffered through harrasment, verbal abuse, belittling, we must now suffer the media's ostracization.

I guess I feel compelled to write in this, in part, because of the recent lawsuit by a vigilante group of vengeful Colorado soccer moms who want to begin purging everything that caused the Columbine "incident" -- except the actual cause of it.

Everyone, it seems, is chronically missing the point. As DMan so correctly stated, the reason Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold shot up their high school was not because they were psychos. It was not because they played too many video games. It was not because they wanted attention. It was because they endured the same shit over and over, day in and day out. They were isloated. Excluded. Jeered at. Why? Because, way back in the days when they were little kids who didn't know better, someone decided they were weridos. Freaks. They didn't deserve the same respect as everyone else. They weren't really people. That little curse lived on with them as they became aware of the world around them. It lived on, until they day they took their own lives. No, ladies and gentlemen, it was not the video games. It was society around them. It chewed them up and spat them out, and then rubbed the heel of its shoe in the disfigured, wretched mound of their broken psyche.

And they fucking snapped.

And if you can't realize this was what really happened, then you are indeed looking at the issue through rose colored glasses. I don't want to see high schools get massacred. I grieve for what happened at Columbine. But I don't grieve the scum that got killed, because the whole thing was their own damn fault. I grieve for the tortured souls of Harris and Klebold, and I grieve for the fact that will never be vindicated, and will never be understood for what they really were.

I don't want to see the face of the "victims" on 60 minutes. I don't want to read sympathetic stories about them in Time magazine. They didn't deserve to die, perhaps, but it is folly to say that those who were the targets of our dear little perpetrators were as innocent as the driven snow.

But I digress. The media likes missing the point, really. They present the issue that most people want to hear. The masses, the parents of America, don't want to be told that their Johnny and Sally are driving those druggy goth freaks over the edge. Their kids would never do that. So the media dances around the truth. The schools are harsh about discipline.

And oh, how wrong they are. They are, in effect, plucking up the stem of the weed, but leaving the root to fester. In time the weed will return to despoil the garden once more, unless its root is removed as well. The decadent, merciless hierarchy that exists in public high schools is that root. Until we can come to see that as the true cause of the violent retaliation of these tortured souls, we cannot pull it from the ground, and we cannot solve this problem.

Don't go shoot up your schools, kids. It won't have the effect you want. But please, please don't make Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold out to be the evil incarnations of satan in whose veins runs not blood but black, thick oil. That isn't what they were. They don't deserve that, and neither does the video game industry, or any honest organization like that. You know who to blame, so spread the word.


Kit Lo: Yeah, sorry I neglected to mention who the bad guys and good guys were in that episode. I started writing the writeup about halfway through it, so I wasn't really sure. I would agree though, that anyone who blames it on videogames, or any other physical outside influence has it horribly wrong, as does anyone who villifies the perpetraitors and places no blame whatsoever on those who drove them to it.
but I just watched an episode of Boston Public tonight, and I am really, really getting sick of the mass media making people like me, people like us, into the villains.

The episode started out with the guy telling a girl that "she'll regret not going with him to the prom." Next, the guy wrote a "hit list" in his journal. What did the principals do? If they worked in Columbine, they would've expelled the young man and be called saviours. Actually, the principals wanted to keep the guy. The vice principle recommended the idea of joining the debate team. The lead guys who run the school are not the enemies, it's the father of the girl that was "threatened." He wanted the guy to be expelled. He treated the guy as evil incarnate. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone, baby.

Back in real life, Dale Todd, the father of the Hellspawn who I quoted in Columbine High School (Rah, rah, sis-boom-bah, kill those faggots and you're a star!) wrote a little with a lawyer to good ol' John Carmack to stop selling games to minors. Mr. Todd has definitely barked up the wrong tree.

The "cheer" I made just sounded right for Evan Todd's "school spirit/zealotry/homophobia" speech. It is meant to carry on the Hellspawn's main idea only.

Log in or registerto write something here or to contact authors.