Connecticut To Host Public Video Game Burning
Feel like keeping warm during those cold American winter days? Why not go to your local public burning. If you live in Southington, Connecticut a brand new initiative called the Violent Video Games Return Program will be taking place on January 12. The program is offering anyone a $25 gift certificate in exchange for your violent video games, according to fellow gaming website Polygon these games will be “snapped, tossed into a town dumpster and likely later incinerated.” The entire program is being organized by a group by the name of the SouthingtonSOS, which includes “the Chamber of Commerce, YMCA, board of education, fire department, town officials, United Way and local clergy.” Before all you Blu-Ray movies and CD discs get jealous, if you are violent enough you can also be melted down by flames.
“There are youngsters who appear to be consumed with violent video games,” Joe Erardi, Southington School superintendent explained to Polygon. “I’m not certain if that’s a good thing. If this encourages one courageous conversation with a parent and their child, then it’s a success. We’re suggesting that for parents who have a child or children who play violent video games, to first of all view the games. We’re asking parents to better understand what their child is doing. Have a conversation about next steps. If parents are comfortable [with their child's gaming habits], we’re comfortable.”
As I said this event will take place on January 12 at the Southington Drive-in Theater, where once again Polygon has reported that those who bring violent games, music or movies will be rewarded with “a $25 gift voucher intended to be used for other forms of entertainment, like perhaps, a local water park.” These gift certificates will be donated by a member of the Greater Southington Chamber of Commerce as what is being called a “token of appreciation for their action of responsible citizenship.” Because nothing says responsible citizenship and non-violence like polluting the air with Nathan Drakes box-art.
For those of you interested in burning your belongings for a water park ride, SouthingtonSOS has released the following statement regarding this event:
“The group’s action is not intended to be construed as statement declaring that violent video games were the cause of the shocking violence in Newtown on December 14th. Rather, SouthingtonSOS is saying is that there is ample evidence that violent video games, along with violent media of all kinds, including TV and Movies portraying story after story showing a continuous stream of violence and killing, has contributed to increasing aggressiveness, fear, anxiety and is desensitizing our children to acts of violence including bullying. Social and political commentators, as well as elected officials including the president, are attributing violent crime to many factors including inadequate gun control laws, a culture of violence and a recreational culture of violence.”
“Our message is fairly simple: Have the conversation with your child,” Erardi further explained. “If you conclude your child is done with these games, drop them off and [let's] move forward. That is all. It’s not about the NRA endorsing, or video game production companies defending, it’s a grassroots movement. It’s simple and we believe it’s meaningful.”
This isn’t the first outrageous act we have heard against the video games industry since the tragic events late last year, as West Virginia senator Jay Rockefeller proposed a bill that would allow the “National Academy of Sciences to investigate the impact of violent video games and other content on children’s well-being”
So those of you looking to cash-in on some free water park trips, I recommend heading down to the bargain bin at your local games retailer, picking up some cheap dollar games and then sit back and enjoy water park bliss.
For all your latest public burnings, keep it tuned to Analog Addiction.
Jamie Briggs manages Analog Addiction where you can find all his latest reviews, interviews and features and also like them on Facebook. Also follow his daily life on Twitter @AnalogAddiction and their videos on YouTube.