Censorship of film, news, and books has a long history in America even to this present moment. Films were first censored in Chicago in 1907. The Women’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) lobbied to censor films and books in 1914. While Woodrow Wilson censored free speech and even jailed American citizens for speech he did not approve of. Even going as far as censoring German food names like ‘hamburgers’, renaming them as ‘liberty steaks’. Very similar to Bush Jr calling to rename ‘French fries’ to ‘freedom fries’ because of France not supporting the war on terror in the early 2000s.
In 1915 Mutual Film Corporation v. Industrial Commission of Ohio, the Supreme Court stated movies are not protected by the first amendment. Even worse in 1918 The Sedition Act and Espionage Act was passed making it illegal for citizens to publicly criticize the government, military, flag, or constitution.
In the 1920s-1930s many protestant’s and Catholic’s critics even demanded for federal regulation of the film industry. Fast forward to the 1990s-2000s, tyrants like Hillary Clinton demanded censorship of violent video games once again violating the first amendment.
While it’s understandable these video games may not be healthy for young children. The censorship also affected age consenting adults, which was not ok. These anti violent video game groups even went as far to ban adult rated video games from being sold in stores even to adults. Making it impossible for adults to even have access to these type of games and violating their first amendment. Groups like these fueled emotional porn images of school shootings and claimed video games like Grand Theft Auto were responsible for school shooters violent behavior while millions of Americans played video games and never committed a violent crime. When really almost all of the school shooters were on antipsychotics that most likely caused them to kill innocent people.
Rockstar was forced to censor dismemberment and other violent behaviors that were present in the first game. While these same type of people pushed for their sons and daughters to kill innocent people in the invasion of Iraq. If the images of war were not censored a lot of young adults might of rethinked joining the military. The question remains is censorship of war in films and video games cloaking the real horror of war? Giving a false image of war to young people?
A young man or woman that is used to playing censored video games with no blood or realistic gore might not take real world consequences in war serious. Many thinking, joining the military is a cake walk. Not realizing the reality of losing limbs and horrific injuries in a real battle. Is that not the REAL Desensitization?
Psychologically humans will always feel the need to express anger and violence. Even if war is eliminated, they will still be present. To deny that emotion will only end in bottled up emotions eventually causing someone to physically want to hurt others in real life. Why not use video game technology as a tool to channel these negative behaviors in fake computer models rather than an innocent person? An article titled, ‘The Link Between Video Games and Stress Relief’ states that, “Most gamers report that playing video games—even violent games—is a way to relieve stress and enjoy playing with friends.” Elizabeth Scott, PhD
Article Image is property of Rockstar Games.