Jack Thompson's Letter To NIU President
Jack Thompson posted the following letter he sent to the NIU President on our site earlier today. I have to wonder if the president of Northern Illinois University has more to worry about right now than video game related debates. On the long list of things that probably caused this shooting, I doubt gaming is even on it. Jack claims to have experience dealing with school shootings in the past. Unfortunately, I have first hand experience with school shootings and I can say that video games were the last thing on my mind at the time. Here’s the letter:
John B. Thompson, Attorney at Law
1172 S. Dixie Hwy., Suite 111
Coral Gables, Florida 33146
February 16, 2008
John G. Peters, President
Northern Illinois University
1425 W. Lincoln Hwy.
DeKalb, IL 60115-2825 Via Fax to 815-753-8686
Re: Part of the Explanation for this Awful Disaster
Dear President Peters:
First of all, my condolences for this terrible loss. I have had the disturbing privilege of representing a number of families devastated by these types of incidents. I represented all six parents of the three girls killed by a 14-year-old video gamer in the Paducah, Kentucky, school massacre. I currently represent the families of three policemen in Alabama who were slain by a teen who trained to kill them on the cop-killing simulation video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City. This case was featured on 60 Minutes. See
The day after the NIU tragedy this week, I was on the Fox News Channel predicting that the killer on your campus would be someone who was immersed in violent video games, as this is a common thread in almost all of these incidents. I mentioned in the interview the mass murder simulation game, Counter-Strike. It was the game of choice by the killers in the two worst school shootings in history—Virginia Tech and Erfurt, Germany.
Sure enough, the New York Post reports today the accuracy of that prediction. I attach herewith the Post article.
Governor Blagojevich was on Fox hours later echoing my specific concern about the linkage between violent video games and school killings.
I have addressed roughly 200 college campuses about this problem. I am more than willing to come to your campus, free of charge of course, to explain to the students and faculty and surrounding community why these games, played by students, pose a public safety hazard. Brain scan science recently coming out of Harvard explains it well. There are multiple reasons why these evil events happen. Immersion of young males in murder simulation as a form of entertainment is one of the more powerful reasons.