Hot off the heels of the massacre at Virginia Tech, officially the worst school shooting in U.S. history, there’s a post on Kotaku that notes that anti-game crusader Jack Thompson has gone on TV and blamed video games for the tragedy. If anyone has ever followed Thompson and his agenda over the years, you could have almost started the countdown to this from the moment the story was reported.
Within the comments section under the entry you’ll find a lot of the expected venom directed at Thompson for using the shooting as a way to push his “message” to the masses while the dead are practically still being identified. Editor Brian Crescente doesn’t pull any punches in his responding to the Thompson move:
“It saddens me that filth like Jack can get on national television to gloat and revel in the deaths of so many and try to put it off as education.”
What’s scary is that part about getting on national television. As Crescente points out, Thompson has lied, threatened his peers and judges, and is dangerously close to losing his license to practice law in Florida. And now “God’s vessel” is being put on TV as a credible source? Nice.
I’m interested to see what will happen in the MSM (mainstream media) as we all get deeper into the story. I’ve already seen a few comments on various gaming forums hoping that the police don’t find “Rainbow Six” or “Gears of War” sitting around in the gunman’s home. Others are angry that the concept of video games is even brought up, worried about the potential that it would overshadow the fact that more than 30 kids are dead. Fair or unfair, it might be safe to say that gaming is going to be brought up again when it comes to this — it always is whenever a school shooting comes up.
I’m also curious to see how our contemporary society will handle this. I went to Kent State University, where the memory of the “four dead in Ohio” still resonates throughout the campus, even though those kids were shot back in the ’70s. Those four essentially became the identity of the school. And now at Virginia Tech, there are 32 dead. At least, last time I counted. Eight times the death toll at KSU.
I’m sure there are more words I can put here, but I can’t find them right now. I’ll talk more about gaming stuff next time. Til then.