Journalist Takes Paralyzed NFL Player as Opportunity to Slam Video Gamers
A Virginia journalist has used yet another senseless tragedy to malign video gamers. Buffalo Bills tight end Kevin Everett took a big hit on Sunday and has suffered paralysis. It is a very sad situation and a loss for his family, fans and colleagues alike.
Football is a dangerous game, even with all the padding. President Roosevelt almost had the game outlawed because of the number of college deaths resulting from matches. Even with all the modern rules, training and protection, players know every time they hit the field they are at risk for serious injury and unfortunately Kevin Everett isn’t alone in his suffering.
Leave it to the media to take a horrible accident and use it as a platform to attack violence in video games and the people who play them. see Virginia Pilot columnist Bob Molinaro wrote a shameful discussion of Everett’s injury under the headline Video-game generation may be desensitized to NFL injuries:
I IMAGINE THERE’S a large segment of NFL fans that envisions pro football to be the embodiment of the video games they love to play.
…I’ve got a feeling that a certain percentage of males, those whose senses have been bombarded by video violence all their lives, are attracted to pro football by the slickly edited TV images that are a variation of their virtual-reality experiences.
This makes me wonder if the catastrophic injury to Buffalo Bills tight end Kevin Everett will make any real impression on the desensitized adolescents and adults raised with the cartoon violence of “Madden ’08″ or “NFL Blitz,” or the absurd blood-and-guts scenarios associated with other Xbox games.
I wonder if any of this hits home with the very large and growing demographic that comes to football through the make-believe violence of video games. In that world, jacked-up players always bounce back, returning as good as new when the game is switched on.
This week, more than many, we’re reminded that in real-time, real-life football, the violence and its consequences are all too real.
We all know the risks of playing football, professionally or at the playground. The players weigh them every time they line up on a field. However, I can’t begin to express my shock, dismay and disgust at this journalist’s dehumanizing portrayal of gamers. Even small children can differentiate between a game and reality. To imply that a whole generation of people have no compassion or sense of reality shows that he lacks some of those qualities himself.
Thankfully, Kevin Everts’ condition is improving. He may even walk again. Spare a moment to send the power of positive thinking his way.