As the anniversary of the tragedy at Sandy Hook draws close, the families of those impacted and the community at large are surely in all our thoughts. The wounds have barely begun to heal, and it won't be an easy day for anyone. I can think of nothing more horrific than, in the wake of such sadness and senselessness, having to revisit that trauma. Yet, that's exactly what one video game company seems intent on making the families do.
The game is called The Slaying of Sandy Hook. Yeah, that's right. No beating around the bush there. The plot? You are a shooter armed with an AR-15 assault rifle taking down everyone you see in the school. You know, for points. While the game has already been pulled from the site where it was originally released to the public, the damage has already been done.
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Adding more fuel to the fire, apparently the game took a "pro-gun control" stance. The game-makers urged its players to reach out to their lawmakers about reforming gun control laws. I'm sorry, but tacking on a trite message to a game that romanticizes the mass murdering of children does not make your "game" anywhere close to okay. If you want to promote a conversation about gun-control, there are other ways of going about it. These ways don't involve the reenactment of child murder for profit.
There are times when a criminal at their trial is banned from making a profit from their crime. We typically associate these sorts of rules with murderers. The idea is that we don't want them to make money off the deaths of their victims, causing further damage to their memory and pain to their families. While the people behind this video game aren't killers, I wish there was a blanket law we could apply to events like Sandy Hook that prevented people from profiting off of tragedy. I guess you could make the argument for the law of "common decency," but that doesn't seem to hold much clout for thoughtless people like the "brilliant minds" behind this game.
Should the video game makers issue an apology to the victims' families?
Image via claudiasimsphotography/Flickr