Wednesday, December 14, 2005

 

Someone to Watch Over Me....?

Teaming up with the all-too-popular Joe Lieberman, Hillary Clinton has decided to pander to conservatives to appear more moderate (in spite of her repeated "denials" that she plans on running for President in 2008) by introducing the Family Entertainment Protection Act. The Act aims to limit what video game makers can put into their products because CLEARLY parents have NO control over what their children play. Can anyone predict where this is going yet?

Although concerns about what is on television and in video games are not to be taken lightly, the question that arises is: when did conservatives decide that the government is better at watching over our children than we are? Have we forgotten the all-too-important value upon which most of our philosophy rests, which is Personal Responsibility? What ever happened to monitoring what your children watch and reading the back of the video game before purchasing it? Are we really so powerless that we need the government to regulate the video game industry? Isn't the goal to limit government interference?

In a time when the government is increasingly seen to be the "nanny" over values, we've failed to realize that the people have the power. If people stop spending money on violent games and send a message to the industry that they will not continue to sponsor their products until certain changes are made, then eventually, the blow to the industries pocket will force change. People vote with their feet all the time, why not vote with your wallet or pocketbook?

Take the recent uproar over Grand Theft Auto: San Quentin. Parent's were shocked, SHOCKED, to find that the video game they purchased for their children (which is premised on stealing cars, shooting people, and causing all kinds of destruction to property) contained violent and sexual content. What did they do? They called for a boycott, they ran articles, public policy groups spoke out against it. And what was the result? The game was pulled. Still, there were some who went crying to the government to right all wrongs, but whether they knew it or not, hitting the companies who get rich on selling drugs, sex, and violence to children in the pocket was more effective than crafting beaurocratic red tape.

It's time that conservatives and Christians stop relying on the government to dictate how we raise our children and realize that change begins at home. With numerous organizations informing the public on controling their televisions, such as ControlYourTv.org, it is unnecessary to think that the government knows better than we do -- and it's time to stop acting like it.


(For further debate, see....)

Comments:
What do you make of the fact that Hillary walked out of a White House screening of "Pulp Fiction"?

I hear she kind of dislikes American culture.
 
I agree, Nunzia. If I had kids I would want to be the only "nanny" for my kids.
 
I find that the following phrase is highly effective in controlling what my daughter does and does not see on television, etc:

"No"

It's pretty simple, easy to spell, and so forth. It also works really well if you're willing to actually back it up.

Here's the deal: Kids want things that are not good for them. It sucks telling them that they cannot have it. But the fact that it sucks doesn't mean that it's the government's job to deliver the "no" for you.
 
I have this blog running on another site: http://protestantpub.com/?p=11 and I seem to be getting some different reactions there. Feel free to chime in!
 
Good to see you blogging again, Nunzia!

Here is a different reaction: It would be wonderful if just parental supervision would work. Having raised three, and recently - four, because I raised my granddaughter, I can tell you it won't, and I will tell you why:

It will work in your home where you have the responsibility of supervision your children, however not all parents take that responsibility seriously. But even for those who do take it seriously, your pre-teen or teen may go over to someone else's house and see things you don't want them watching. This is why our media needs to be made to clean up it's act.

But getting back to Hillary... she's simply playing both sides against the middle and it's going to sink her.

Good posting, gal! :)
 
You're right - what exactly did those parents expect from a game based on killing, stealing, gang violence and using prostitutes?
Video games aren't network TV - they don't come with the Playstation!
 
Hillary is a pain in our collective Democratic ass, almost like Abramhoff is a pain in the Republican hide. And honestly, here is one "D" that won't vote for her in 2008 if she runs(which she won't, as she has NO support from the democratic leadership as she has taken a hawkish stand on Iraq). About the Video games-you are on the mark-F'ing Duh! Hows about this one-if you don't want to have your kids involved in this crap, keep it out of their hands. It's called responsibility, and you are spot on when it comes to this point.

The nanny state? You asked for them-it is what happens when the government wants to be in your living room, your bedroom, your e-mail box, your mailbox, and any other place they see fit(Ask Roberto Gonzales-he'll tell ya!)But hey, isn't that what the Republican party of late is about? :)

You are a good writer, and I like reading your blog. I hope that you don't mind that another D is posting here. Take care!
 
I think Hell just froze over.

I agree with you wholeheartedly, and if you'll take a look at my blog you will see that we clearly did not vote for the same person on Electio Day.

I like you. I might add you to my blogroll.
 
I agree with your esteem for personal responsibility, but I am keenly aware that pop culture has a tendency to invade homes.

Actually, some conservatives favor such censorship of violent video games, like jurist Robert Bork. I think these conservatives feel it best to be at the state and local level under the rubric of community standards if I understand them correctly.

Consider reading No Liberty for License: The Forgotten Logic of the First Amendment by David Lowenthal.

I always had a libertarian streak to my conservatism, but I still recognize the value of conservative community standards, but having said that, I recognize no constitutional authority for the feds to decide what those standards are, because no authority is there. Leave such matters to the states and localities. Affirmation of federalism and want of jurisdiction is reason enough to oppose this measure.

If you wanted a good conservative cultural critique of why things have gone wrong in civil society, then I recommend you read Robert Nisbet, who has been called a conservative sociologist which is oxymoronic I know, since sociology is dominated by statists these days.

Nisbet achieved notoriety for his groundbreaking manuscript, entitled The Quest for Community. His thesis therein was remarkable, for he asserted that the contemporary preoccupation with community in the civil discourse was but a result of the displacement of the intermediary institutions between the individual and the state whether the family, neighborhood, church, or voluntary and civic associations. The displacement of these institutions so vital to civil society and the accompanying obsession with community was precipitated by the activities and structure of the modern state. In other words, the centralised state has dissolved the natural bonds and allegiances of civil society. Much of the later twentieth century social pathologies, dependency, poverty, and rampant crime perhaps owe to authentic community being grinded in the millstone of central state authority. What's left are the hyperatomized cogs of autonomous individuals.

So, in a way, the cultural decadence we live in today, is very much an unintended consequence of the reckless growth of state power and liberalism's autonomous man. The societal stigmatisms of church, neighborhood and community have slowly withered in favor of that humanist, borderline nihilist culture that pervades the education establishment.

The problem with modern statist liberals is that they conceive of a polity very much like Greek polis, which is all-encompassing and there is seemingly very little aspects of society that cannot be touched by the state or by a piece of legislation. Though they make an exception on their so called doctrine of privacy which they strangely and immorally believe has a corollary right to an abortion.
 
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