video games sending negative propaganda

The game Ethnic Cleansing, created in 2002, is known as one of the most politically incorrect games in the gaming market today. I was introduced to it during the previous year in high school. It was used to us as an example of media planting ideas in our minds blindly, very similar to the propaganda concept that has discussed in class. This game is played by a person who has to go through a ghetto to kill black people, and then proceed to kill various Jewish before proceeding to the end of the game where he must kill Ariel Sharon, the former Prime Minister of Israel.  This game is clearly a Neo-Nazi propaganda idea, and clearly places ideas within the players head that these actions are appropriate. As my thesis, i propose that games provoke racial hatred by common consensus such as these should be banned from the gaming industry. I propose this because it is free media rights such as these that allow and initiate racial problems that plague our society today, and companies such as Resistance Records, which runs the game, ought to either shut down the game or at least modify the game to prohibit racist ideas. I know many people will claim that the games we choose to play is our freedom given to us by the constitution, but I have always claimed that a society with too much freedom can be more dangerous than no freedom at all. Freedom such as the ability to create your own games that can spread racist propaganda will eventually lead to racial ideas being branded into people’s mind and become part of their lifestyle, as this game has been publicly publicized by Neo-Nazi’s and white supremacists. This argument has been supported by the Anti-Defamation League as well as Stuff Magazine, labeling Ethnic Cleansing the 4th most controversial game. Oddly enough, people have also been sound in rejecting this game, as Resistance Records attempted to create sequels to Ethnic Cleansing, and all attempts failed and were not as popular. Not only does the game itself give away unpleasant ideas of racism, the phrase “Ethnic Cleansing” is said to mean  ”purposeful policy designed by one ethnic or religious group to remove by violent and terror-inspiring means the civilian population of another ethnic or religious group from certain geographic area”, however not to be confused with genocide”. Such similar acts have been known to be conducted in by Nazi’s as well as in Yugoslavia and Cambodia. It is because of this unpleasant nature of ideas attached to the games that I support my original premise of controlling games with negative ideas attached to them.

This link will allow those to view the game, it’s images, sounds, goals, and levels and depending on whether you have the correct programs installed, will allow you to play the free version.

  1. Outright banning the distribution of games with hate speech is far too extreme. Of course, I’m not endorsing the content of games like Ethnic Cleansing, but as works of art they should not be censored. You say that “the ability to create your own games that can spread racist propaganda will eventually lead to racial ideas being branded into people’s mind and become part of their lifestyle”, but you’re assuming that people are always impressionable. As Extra Credits pointed out in their video “Lazy Design,” people can usually tell when the game they’re playing is trying to convey a specific message. The only people who might be swayed by games like Ethnic Cleansing would be people who are already racist. Media like games or books or films shouldn’t be censored for their content. People are smart enough to judge content for themselves. And how would society decide just what constitutes hate speech? Who would be the arbiters?

  2. cahross said:

    I do agree that censorship/barring is a bit far-reaching, but I also do wonder where to draw the line with video games and other things like this. For an example that’s similar enough, the game “Super Columbine Massacre RPG!”, where you actually reenact the massacre as Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris. What’s an artistic statement and what’s a trivialization of a tragedy or tragic aspect of our society ?

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