PS3 News: CT Town Will Destroy Violent Games In Wake Of Newtown Shooting - PS3 News

Members Login: Register | Why sign up? | Forgot Password?

CT Town Will Destroy Violent Games In Wake Of Newtown Shooting

The Newtown tragedy has once again managed to turn the spotlight on violent media, video games included. Now it's reaching a whole new level of finger-pointing.

According to the Hartford Courant, a nearby Connecticut town's community leaders has arranged an event to collect and destroy violent video games, as well as CDs and DVDs. Southington is about a half-hour from Newtown, so they're obviously close to the shooting that left twenty children and six adults dead. And volunteers will assemble at the Southington Drive-In on January 12 to accept any games and other forms of violent media and promptly destroy them.

The incentive to do so is that each family who contributes will receive a gift certificate to a local restaurant, the Lake Compounce amusement park, or a bowling alley. Well, that's nice of them. Said Southington board president of the chamber of commerce Charlie Cocuzza:

"We want to stop the violence in our community. Those games can cost $60 or $70. So we want to give families a certificate to do something fun and family-oriented, something where they can spend a couple of hours together instead."

This all being said, the community group in charge has stated that they're not directly linking games with the murders at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Rather, they think it's time for parents to speak to their kids about whether or not playing violent video games is appropriate.

For the record: I have contributed several pieces to the Courant in the past; they are familiar with my work to some extent, and they will receive an article that addresses this issue. If it's accepted for publication, I'll let you all know. Something needs to be said.

Tags: video games, newtown tragedy, newtown shooting, gaming industry

1/2/2013 9:15:59 PM Ben Dutka

Put this on your webpage or blog:
Email this to a friend
Follow PSX Extreme on Twitter

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on Google Share on MySpace Share on Delicious Share on Digg Share on Google Buzz Share via E-Mail Share via Tumblr Share via Posterous

Comments (50 posts)

tes37
Wednesday, January 02, 2013 @ 10:43:51 PM
Reply

I remember reading a Christmas article you wrote for the Hartford Courant. That was a well written piece I thought. I will definitely read the new article if it gets printed and you provide a link.

I don't think destroying violent games will change anything, but if it helps them deal with the tragedy, then it could be a good thing for them to do.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:15:53 AM

Thanks. Yeah, that was Christmas 2011. They've taken my last three articles I've pitched to them, but they might not take this one...I take a pretty hard-nosed stance against parents being lazy, so that may not go over well. LOL

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

tes37
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:26:11 AM

If they don't want to publish it, you could list it here so we can read it.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Lawless SXE
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:34:52 AM

I agree with the idea of publishing it here. Would prove to be an interesting read and, for those of us that are interested, give us a look at what might be considered a different approach for your writing/thought processes.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

BikerSaint
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:37:38 AM

Yes, and re-tweet it too.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Simcoe
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 9:47:59 AM

Ben, your article might get some of these people riled up...and they'll write letters to the editor, I'm sure the editor won't mind the added interest their paper would be receiving!

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Reccaman18
Wednesday, January 02, 2013 @ 10:57:17 PM
Reply

Video games are a form of art, and should be treated as such. Everyone loves to find scapegoats instead of taking responsibility for their own actions, and unfortunately, video games are always the favorite whipping boy, in a manner of speaking.

Agree with this comment 3 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Lawless SXE
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:36:48 AM

Bonfire of the Vanities.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

maxpontiac
Wednesday, January 02, 2013 @ 11:05:54 PM
Reply

I honestly believe this is a case of "heart in the right place", but translates to a form of the blame game.

There is nothing wrong with turning the electronics off and spending time with the family. There is also nothing wrong with taking the $60 and doing something besides purchasing a game.

The whole incentive for trading games for gift certificates is a nice idea as well but why not just have a portion of the proceeds go to some type of anti-violence institution? This type of behavior does nothing but create a rift in the town or city it occurs.

I can also applaud the community for raising awareness on sensitive issues too. Afterall, as a parent, it is your job to communicate hot topics such as these.

With all that said, folks who are uneducated and most of the non-gaming media will latch on to this like vultures and make violent games the scapegoat. In the mean time, they'll ignore this country's moral decline and basic tendancy to avoid individual responsibility.

Circumstances such as this are an example to why I personally do my best to educate non-gamers everywhere.

It's ok to be gamer, really, it is!

Last edited by maxpontiac on 1/2/2013 11:09:37 PM

Agree with this comment 5 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

ZettaiSeigi
Wednesday, January 02, 2013 @ 11:39:47 PM

Spot on, maxpontiac. I like what Ben said on the main page of this site about "destroying violent video games will solve everything" because I also do not see the point. Sure, it raises an awareness somewhat but at the end of the day it will still not solve the problem.

The problem is not with the games themselves being violent. It's with the person playing them and their enviornment. If that's the law when it comes to video games, then am I supposed to be surprised that I haven't committed any criminal act after playing a lot of violent games over the last few years? Because decapitating and gouging eyes out of their sockets are the order of the day with all the God of War games I've played. Yet despite all that, I have no inclination to harm or kill those that I cannot stand. Anyway, I'm rambling so I'd end that there.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Mog
Wednesday, January 02, 2013 @ 11:45:16 PM
Reply

How violent must a game be to be labelled as violent? Would uncharted be classified as violent? Would anything with guns be a 'violent' game? Or must it be very gory like in God of War??

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Underdog15
Wednesday, January 02, 2013 @ 11:56:09 PM

Super Mario stomping on Goombas and kicking turtles... Duck Hunt... anything with swords... Super Smash Bros? call of duty... where's the line drawn and what are the measureables. lol

Agree with this comment 3 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Underdog15
Wednesday, January 02, 2013 @ 11:57:00 PM
Reply

Why don't they just sell them to gamers in Iceland instead of destroying them? They're about due for their second homicide in over a year, anyways.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Deleted User
Wednesday, January 02, 2013 @ 11:57:13 PM
Reply

It not only won't change anything, it's not even remotely the cause at all.

If anything, blame crime itself. It stems roots all the way back to ancient history.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Underdog15
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 12:01:00 AM

True. But this particular incident is beyond crime... Crime usually has a purpose. This was senseless.

Still, I agree with you wholeheartedly as I'm 100% certain various forms of media are not the problem. There are movies, games, etc. in other countries, too. I'm quite certain this guy didn't go, "oh shoot, that round of GTA was sick! Imma go do that FO REAL!"

Last edited by Underdog15 on 1/3/2013 12:01:22 AM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wackazoa
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 10:47:23 AM

I think it is interesting that we label these crimes. I do believe we do so to distance ourselve from them, as in "that is something I could never do." But as stated by Emily it goes back to ancient times. Therefore it must be in human nature. We label people to distance ourselve from them. The Nazis were monsters, some were (ex. Heydrich) some werent (ex. Speer and Von Braun) but they were all people.

If find human nature fascinating because we try to seem like we are different than the rest of nature. So when someone commited a heinous act we call them something so that they are different from us. We are all capable of doing bad things if we believe that there is no better recourse.

Agree with this comment 3 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

xenris
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 11:19:25 AM

My father has been practicing psychology for over 25 years and the field still has a tough time identifying exactly what causes someone to do something this terrible with no motive. Whether its genetics, conditioning, nature vs nurture or a combination of all of the above video games don't put a gun in that persons hand and further more games are in no way a simulation for using a gun in real life. Guns handle way differently than they do in games any soldier will tell you that. I bring this up because a lot of people call CoD a killing simulation, which just irks me.

I think burning or banning violent games might help in some cases sure, but its just like banning all people from driving a car because some idiot decides to get behind the wheel while they're hammered drunk and they end up crashing and killing people.

Violent behaviour has been around since before any sort of media was around. If you take a history course you will soon discover humanity has a history filled with blood and terrible acts of violence no matter what time period you visit something crappy and violent happened.

I just wish the media and the people who wanted to make a difference would look at the real issue and realize this is a psychological issue and more research needs to be put into those fields so that we can understand how to safely and naturally treat these people. Drugs aren't the solution, while they might help, in a lot of cases side affects for say antidepressants are thoughts of suicide and homicide. Which might even increase the odds for this depressed person into committing these acts.

There needs to be a better solution than just putting a band aid on this by banning violent games in hopes it will decrease these incidents.

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wackazoa
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 11:46:16 AM

And look at books and television. Violence is there and as if not more prevelant. But books are "old" and TV is mainstream. So not much is done to them.

I do think we need to research human nature. But instead of instantly demanding the death of the wrong doers I think we ought to interview them extensively. And not just about thier crime but about thier mindsets. What do they think and why...

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Underdog15
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 12:08:38 AM
Reply

I would like to see them make more of an effort to focus on family oriented events and make parents aware of ratings and why they are there. They come so very close to doing a good thing, but they turn the blame on something that can't possibly solve the problem. All it will do is cause ignorance. It's a version of using hate to fight hate. How will this message to parents and professionals cause them to look at other professionals who -do- play games? If anything, it'll further segregate the "lonely gamer" stereotypes that actually do have problems socializing.

Think about it... you're a teenager who is a poor communicator and poor socializer. You have games as your venting and coping mechanism. Perhaps it's even well regulated among studies, family time, and gaming! But it's your YOU time. How does this kid feel in the community now? He will feel like he cannot achieve complete respect. He might wonder when he'll grow up out of video games and be hurt when he doesn't! (As most of us don't!) And instead of developing good boundaries in life, he'll be ashamed of his hobby, never talk about it, feel like an outcast, recede to his hobby to get away even MORE, and yeah... basically, they will in some cases cause the very problem they want to solve that isn't even yet present in the first place!

People REALLY need to watch fighting hate with hate or ignorance. It may solve one problem in some cases, but it will also create many more. I like that they are actually actively DOING something. (The rest of us just talk about how too bad it is) They should be commended for that. But I really wish there was better leadership in this sort of event. It really is unfortunate it's just... OH so close to being a good thing...

It's actually akin to the burning of evil or violent books thing people used to do not really all that long ago.

Last edited by Underdog15 on 1/3/2013 12:11:42 AM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Alejandro562
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 12:26:04 AM
Reply

Instead of burning discs and smashing them, these idiots should go to congress like everyone else and demand stricter backround checks on gun buyers, outlaw the selling of assault rifles to civilians , and vote to get more mental help to these people that need it, theres no reason a civilian needs to carry an assault rifle that can shoot 90+rounds per minute, anyway , just my two cents.

Last edited by Alejandro562 on 1/3/2013 12:26:39 AM

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 12:44:53 AM
Reply

I don't meant to be hyperbolic but did anyone else get a mental flash of Nazi's burning books?

Agree with this comment 4 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:14:41 AM

First image I got.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 3:11:19 AM

Glad I'm not the only one.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Underdog15
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 7:25:11 AM

I got a flash of burning books in Kevin Bacon's Footloose. lol. I mentioned that a little higher up.

Last edited by Underdog15 on 1/3/2013 7:25:45 AM

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Jed
Saturday, January 05, 2013 @ 3:30:09 AM

Exactly what I was thinking World.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

TrophyHunter
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 12:55:18 AM
Reply

I can't believe how stupidly people acts this days.

Blame the gunner, not the gun; but of course, blame the game, not the gamer.

Unstable and crazy people will always be like that, even if the play videogames or not.

Agree with this comment 5 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Lord carlos
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:28:55 AM

An unstable and crazy person would of been stopped by victim no.10 if he had say...a katanna sword and not machine guns & assault rifles!

Agree with this comment 1 up, 2 down Disagree with this comment

Lawless SXE
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:49:23 AM
Reply

The way I see it is that this person was clearly mentally disturbed. Whether he played video games or not has no real bearing on the case and destroying copies of games, alongside other violent media isn't going to change that fact. No. By all accounts, he had issues. Historically, massacres happen at the hands of such people, but we're seeing an increase in the number, brutality and frequency of them. This is something that shouldn't be attributed to entertainment mediums, and rarely entirely to the individual. The blame lies at the feet of the media for glorifying massacre and making martyrs out of the killers.

How many people in the world now know and revile the name of man that went on this spree? A person can kill him/herself and be forgotten, an unknown in a world of billions, with few caring. It happens everyday, but some people just want glory at any cost. They want to feel, at the end, as though their life meant something by having people remember them, so why not take a bunch of kids with them? It's sick, but the sense that it makes can't be denied.

About this... okay. It won't help anything, but if people want to feel as though they're doing some good in the world, why the hell not? It's just as effective as prayer!

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wackazoa
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 10:33:29 AM

I do beleive that maybe a reason for the shooter might have been to get fame. You said it people shoot other all the time but noone knows their names. But to go a do something that will get you known..... that very well could have been a factor.


Look at the dude who shot up the Batman showing in Colorado.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Gordo
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 1:59:20 AM
Reply

What was that movie from the 80s where the town mayor banned dancing until Kevin Bacon moved in?

We need our own Kevin Bacon gaming moment!

If the game is too violent then kids shouldn't be playing it as the ratings aren't allowing them therefore its the parents fault. If they are talking about games for adults then it's not about kids anymore.
They'll probably end up with a copy of Medal of Honour for the PS1 and a dodgy scratched DVD of COD for the XBox and nothing else. Slim pickings for the bowling alley.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 3:11:34 AM

Footloose.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Snaaaake
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 3:29:35 AM
Reply

Umm, to the folks over there.
You guys do know that no matter how many violent entertainment you guys burn.................well, how should I put it, you see, you're ignoring guns so.............yea, amount of problems solved is.............none.........

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

___________
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 3:54:42 AM
Reply

only in america, thats all ill say.

Agree with this comment 4 up, 3 down Disagree with this comment

maxpontiac
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 3:17:00 PM

That is unless you are somewhere in the Middle East.

They do plenty of flag burning (and other stuff) over there.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

___________
Friday, January 04, 2013 @ 8:34:15 AM

yup, but thats flags not games.
not even there THAT stupid!
as i said, only in america.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

berserk
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 4:21:05 AM
Reply

I blame the first couple of guys that did that kind of shooting in school .It seem like it s a " thing " now for those disturbed individual .

That is going to one of the place with the less chance of having anyone able to do shit about them .

It happen too often now to be much more then some copycat crime action in my opinion .

Agree with this comment 0 up, 1 down Disagree with this comment

Simcoe
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 9:44:55 AM
Reply

Was there mention of how much these gift certificates are going to be worth?

This event may be a great incentive for local gamers to get half decent value for their used games!

Might even see a rush at the local Gamestop by gamers raiding the $5 bin just to snag these $10 or $20 gift certificates!

Game publishers will like this event as these games will be destroyed and therefore out of circulation forcing gamers to buy new games rather than used ones!

Agree with this comment 3 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wackazoa
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 10:30:16 AM
Reply

There-in lies the problem nowadays with these kinds of "tragedys". With the 24 hours of news networks constantly having to fill air time, and the competition for ratings, they will often times go with lazy sensationalism rather than just the ordinary mundane facts. Add that with peoples desire to be known and you have these kind of events taking place.

On the broader subject if I can, it is sad to me that with todays social media and TV news it seems everyone HAS to have an opinion on these kinds of "tragedys'. And that opinion MUST BE one of "this is so terrible, we must do something!". But keep in mind that for human existence this has been happening. And for the millions of other deaths that happen each year that dont get benefit concerts nor 2 weeks of news coverage.

Now I am not against the reporting of this. Nor am I a heartless monster (which if you dont express extreme sympathy for these "tragedys" you get pigeon holed as) but I dont see the point in what a congress investigation into violent games or burning violent games will do. "BUT SOMETHING MUST BE DONE!" to me is the worst kind of attitude our society adopts. I am sorry for rambling.


PS. I put tragedy in parathesis because I have contempt for how the word is used and portrayed nowadays. The events in Conn. are sad, much like Columbine and the Virginia Tech events are. But the way the things are covered are starting to be so over the top it is sickening.

Agree with this comment 3 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

gumbi
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 11:29:38 AM
Reply

I'm all for the idea of cashing the games in for a family day voucher, but don't burn them. At the very least send them to a recycling depot. Not only is it terrible for the environment, but the public spectacle of burning art/media is not a positive thing. It's reminiscent of dark times...

Recycle them. Then you can promote quality family bonding, and environmental awareness at the same time. Both are issues that the world needs the next generation to take seriously.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Deleted User
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 11:38:38 AM
Reply

I don't have an issue with this planned bonfire. If it makes the families in Newtown feel better, I'm fine with it just as Tes37 is.

I read wackazoa's intelligent comment and decided not to discuss the sensationalism these T.V. news networks and website used about the story. It truly sickens me how these network executives care about nothing more than money, T.V. ratings and Internet hits than about the lost lives and pain and mental anguish. You simply can't trust these people any longer.

Agree with this comment 2 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

CH1N00K
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 3:39:25 PM
Reply

Oddly enough, I'm half okay with this idea. Not that burning these forms of entertainment will solve anything, but if it gives people a slightly better peace of mind after this tragedy, then so be it...But if they are going to do that why don't they have a gun drive and destroy those as well?

However, if parents are willing to take away violent video games that they purchased for their kids who shouldn't have them in the first place, this isn't necessarily a bad thing. This won't really affect those people that are old enough and mature enough to play and own these games, it just means one town in America is going to have a few less kids worrying about their headshots and KDR..for a day or two at least until they turn around next week and repurchase the game anyways...

Last edited by CH1N00K on 1/3/2013 3:39:48 PM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

wackazoa
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 3:50:33 PM

In my town they do handgun buybacks every couple of years. No questions asked where the gun came from they take it and give you small voucher. Then supposedly they destroy the guns. The city and local churches sponser it. But the town is still in the top 10 per capita murder in the US. I wont defend gun owners but I will say that people where murdered before guns were around. Take away the gun and they will still find a way if they want to bad enough.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 4:39:42 PM
Reply

I have only one question: What are KIDS doing with violent media in the first place?

Oh right, I forgot. The parents bought it for them.

Agree with this comment 3 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Beamboom
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 4:59:20 PM

... They don't need parents for that - they may just as well have bought them themselves. There's no age check at online stores or PSN, and I'm pretty sure there's plenty stores where they don't really bother much about the age rating.


Last edited by Beamboom on 1/3/2013 5:00:05 PM

Agree with this comment 1 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Underdog15
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 7:31:23 PM

Actually, PSN does have an age check if you register your PSN account with a birthday under the age of the game rating. At least mine does. Plus, a parent can set parental restrictions for content from the PS3.

But you are right in that otherwise, a kid can buy a PSN card and download M-rated games. And in Canada, at least, you can't get a credit card until you are 18, so buying online would be a sort of assumption that an adult is paying.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Simcoe
Friday, January 04, 2013 @ 12:25:15 AM

Underdog, a kid can also buy a PS3 (or more likely receive one as a gift from a parent/adult) and make up a birth date too.

But you're right about buying PSN cards, anyone can buy those.

Last edited by Simcoe on 1/4/2013 12:26:00 AM

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

matt99
Thursday, January 03, 2013 @ 8:04:34 PM
Reply

Quick! Burn all the violent media!...but leave the guns alone, they're obviously not part of the problem.

Agree with this comment 3 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

clue
Sunday, January 06, 2013 @ 12:49:49 PM
Reply

these people who are blaming video games for their problems are just like the Nazi's blaming the jews for their problems, how about the 17 year old kid who killed his brother saying he got the idea from watching Dexter? dont see anyone out there burning Dexter dvd's..

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Mounce
Sunday, January 06, 2013 @ 1:22:37 PM
Reply

It reminds me of the old days of superstition, Witchcraft and Sorcery accusations and god damn idiotic fanatics burning books for God or something in some 'Quest' that someone makes and preaches.

Good to know CT is full of fanatic, angry mobs with zero intelligence as if 1000 years or so didn't improve a good mass of people in North America. De-evolution more or less.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

kintaro
Sunday, January 06, 2013 @ 3:01:52 PM
Reply

Hey, i've got an old, dog eared copy of Catcher in the Rye i could throw on the fire, if that's cool.

*sigh* Sometimes it's embarassing living in this state.

Agree with this comment 0 up, 0 down Disagree with this comment

Leave a Comment

Please login or register to leave a comment.

Our Poll

Did Advanced Warfare save Call of Duty?
Yes, CoD is back on track!
Possibly; it was a positive step.
The jury's still out...
No, CoD is still doomed.

Previous Poll Results