Thursday, July 21, 2005


I don’t know what to call this article.

You know, when you read news stories like this, it makes you think: “What in the hell is the world coming to?” And the obvious answer is, “To an end.” But people, psychics and mystics especially, have talked about the coming Rapture since the development of the human ability to deliver sophisticated oratory. All of their predictions have been debunked, discredited, repudiated--any adjective of your choice--until now.

In the 1970’s, if video games were as sophisticated then as they are now, an issue such as the one which plagued the good folks at Rockstar and Take-Two Interactive would have never garnered this much attention. This is 2005--and it feels like we’ve gone back to the night Elvis Presley shook his hips “in a sexual fashion” on Ed Sullivan. In terms of our moral tolerance, that is.

I’m talking about a decade I’ve never experienced, and yet countless interviews with those people who have, countless movies made during that time period that are capsules of attitudes and freewheeling personalities and trends and fashions drive it home for me, that the decade is likely the most liberal decadent decade we have seen since the beginning of our modern civilization. No, this article isn’t necessarily about the much-reminisced ‘70s. It’s more like a brief compare/contrast article detailing the level of censorship, then and now. Back then, films considered to be rated R now were PG. Porn films were being shown in theaters. Exhibitionism was in vogue.

Today, under the repressive Bush regime, if you say “sex” in a feature, you are R. Unless if the film’s about America’s soldiers or firemen or policemen--somebody heroic, someone patriotic--then you’re given the “PG-13” ticket. Maybe even “PG”. Violence is tolerated, to an unbelievable extent--and yet a titty shot earns you some kind of a “restricted” rating or even a sanction in the form of fines or negative publicity.

Is this a rant? I would hesitate to call it such, although this article does contain some hostile expressions. Be it ever so humble. I was shocked when I read about the re-rating of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. Doesn’t make a single bit of sense. At all. I couldn’t unlock the patch--why would your average gamer go through the trouble anyways? Where’s the logic in that kind of reasoning? The ESRB is giving a more explicit rating to the same exact material.

Sorry. I’m just repeating myself at this point. I just think the whole ballyhoo is stupid, many of the people involved in this are behaving in a manner which can only be described as being “imbecilic”, “moronic”, and “puritan”, and that the ESRB needs to reevaluate their criteria for what makes a game unsuitable for children and teens. Because kids hear worse stuff on the playground, or on the city buses and subways, every day.


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