Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Brownshirts Back Down

Polygon reports that the small town of Southington, CT has abandoned it's internationally-reported - and widely-derrided - plans for a mass-burning of "violent" video-games.

Officially, the business/community-leader group that had backed the plan is saying that since the announcement itself succeeded in "promoting discussion" and "creating strong awareness," there was no longer any reason to actually go through with the event.

Unofficially? Call this another win for New Media, is my feeling. Public-shaming has always been one of the ultimate curatives for bullies and petty-fascists, and The Internet is the most powerful tool to inflict such ever devised.

The fight now moves to politics, with gaming and Hollywood "leaders" scheduled to be part of the "comprehensive talks" with the Obama Administration this week and next. The fact that they're there doesn't particularly worry me - this administration is smart enough to know that the idea of a direct causal-relationship between "violent" media and real gun violence is soundly-discredited, unscientific horseshit - the "comprehensive talks" are a smokescreen, "cover" for the administration so that they can avoid looking like they're focused on "going after" the gun lobby when that's in fact what they ARE and should be focused on.

My only "worry" is with just how committed they are to said smokescreen. Obama etc aren't "anti-gaming," but they have shown a political willingness to throw this or that "under the bus" in order to affect the image of bipartisanship - I can easily imagine them "bending" on censorship in order to be able to say "See? We aren't just after your guns. Your turn to give something, NRA."

To my mind, that would be both disasterous in general and an utterly useless gesture on the administration's part; and not just because it would damage the invaluable clout Obama and Democrats in general currently have with the youth vote. Mr. President... in case you haven't noticed, these people already attacked you as an "anti-gun" zealot during the four years when Washington did/said jack shit about the issue. You will never win these people over - to them, you're just a guy with the wrong politics, the wrong name and the wrong skin - forget winning The NRA and it's ilk over, focus on winning over them.