It was only a matter of time before we got some stories of panic reactions in the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings (especially where game stuff is concerned).
A Chinese student in Fort Bend, Texas was arrested after parents freaked out that he re-created a map of Clements High School and uploaded it into a game so he and his buddies could goof around in it. Clearly, he’s a terrorist — or at least that’s what the police said when they arrested him and labeled him a “terroristic threat.” The Chinese community has rallied around him, but he still won’t be able to take part in any graduation ceremonies. I found the synopsis on Joystiq and there’s a link to the local newspaper story as well.
It would be easy to go off about how people virtually re-create real-life surroundings all the time, not only in gaming, but in other disciplines as well — for educational purposes. But I think that point would fall on deaf ears here with this group. I hope these paranoid goofballs are happy — they just took a bright kid who had some technical skills and condemned him. He’s being punished because he’s good at something that’s too “newfangled” for a group of frightened people to understand.
And no, it’s not lost on me that the kid is Asian. Never mind that the insane VaTech shooter was Korean, and that this kid is Chinese. There’s a part of me that thinks that after the VaTech shooting, we all started looking the same. At least that’s how it looks in this case. What a shame.