Archive for 23 April 1995

Not the Houses of Parliament

During 1993, there were a lot of write-ups in the newspapers about violence and video games. The tabloids gave gullible readers the impression that video games were the sole reason for violence on the street. Video games can be violent, especially as the graphics are becoming more detailed. But this is not the only reason for violence. We live in an aggressive society, and whenever, some major violence related incidents occur, the government and the so-called professionals look for a scapegoat.

In 1993, Sega’s new state-of-the-art video game computer was released, the Mega-CD. Along with it was a new type of interactive game released called ‘Night Trap’. In Night Trap, your aim is to trap the vampires and save the teenage girls. In some places the game can be violent if you don’t trap the vampires.

There were also many major incidents in our society, like the horrific murder of James Bulger by two teenagers, many sex attacks, and numerous assaults.

With the release of this new interactive game, Night Trap, that was slightly violent, video games seemed the ideal scapegoat for the Government and the so‐called professionals to use to deflect responsibility from themselves when they realised society was becoming more and more corrupt than ever.

Although video games have been around since the eighties, they are a relatively new concept And as they are new, like most technology, the older generation do not understand them. This is probably because older people were brought-up in an age where technology was not as developed as it is now. And as the majority of Members of Parliament consist of people whose minds are permanently set in the sixties, it is not surprising why they fear this modern technology. Dominic Diamond once said ‘It is human nature to fear what you don’t understand and attack what you fear, and this was and is certainly true of the Government.

When there was a debate in the House of Commons in 1993, instead of the Government discussing what was actually causing violence, all that they were doing was having a slanging match with each other.

Violence is not going to go away over night, but what is the point in looking for scapegoats. The Government should be looking for the actual causes and just passing the blame on to someone else. Maybe the actual reason is that they are not governing the country properly. And most importantly, video games are here to stay and will take us into the 21st century, when the people of the eighties and nighties will take over the running of the country. And without doubt, their flexible and problem solving minds will make a better job of developing our country, as their minds are not fixed on one decade.

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