Call of Dooky

Pardon the potty talk. I guess I’m regressing back to prepubescence.

But I am annoyed and I don’t mean that goofy character that threatens Domino’s pizzas.

It’s Sunday and as is typical, the paper is filled with store inserts. And it seems every insert has Call of Duty on the front page. Best Buy is the worst. There are three phones, a laptop, and a game console on the first page – every single one with the same puke green Call of Duty wall paper. I guess the idea is that you can play the game everywhere. Yuk!

I write a peace blog so I’ve got more than a few issues with a militaristic first person shooter especially this particular franchise which pushes just about every single one of my pacifistic buttons. Talk about being “depressed.”

I express my annoyance to my teenage son who is growing more receptive to my media maddened rants. He says that pretty much everyone he knows has the game. He’s getting used to not being allowed to play certain games that his friends and family members can. But I’ll be honest with you. It gets old being a parent trying to buck the current – and the current trend.

I mean the game is rated M, as in MATURE. Hello! So for the parents who seem to be unaware of what M means here is a little info. The Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB) rates video games similar to the way movies are rated. According to the ESRB website:

Titles rated M (Mature) have content that may be suitable for persons ages 17 and older. Titles in this category may contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.

Hmm. Delightful. I definitely want my child putting his fingers in that stuff. Psych! Sarcasm aside, just for comparison sake, that is similar to an NC-17 movie. In both the video game and movie rating system there is only one rating higher – A (Adult).

If it wasn’t so sad, I would be fascinated by the phenomenon where some parents will allow their children to play M video games and yet not allow them to watch NC-17 movies. But perhaps I’m wrong. Maybe parents are allowing their children to do both. I don’t know. I mean we are so inundated with media these days, how do we keep track? Quite frankly, I look around and I see a lot of parents who seem to have given up and a lot of kids without the necessary boundaries for healthy growth. That is why I write this blog.

So I’ve said my peace. I’m starting to calm down now.

Then my son shows me something else. There on page one down in the lower right corner is another advertisement for earbuds. But these are not ordinary earbuds – they are a tell tale green color and shaped like bullets. Yep, you guessed it. Now you can own your very own Call of Duty earbuds. I guess they make the explosions sound better.

But I suspect they are mainly to keep kids from hearing an alternative voice of peace.

And parents from having to be that voice.

November 10, 2011

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