Editorial: Call of Duty Black Ops Swastika Ban

We live in a world that is jaded and over saturated with stimuli, bearing this in mind it doesn’t surprise anyone when teens and young adults choose to place objectionable imagery in a public forum or in the case of Call of Duty: Black Ops, on their player cards.

The Black Ops developers have recently began efforts to locate and ban the use of Nazi swastikas on player cards which anyone who plays with or against these people will see multiple times. The announcement that this action was being taken has sparked some uproar among the typical internet nay sayers and has caused me to think about this issue.

I’ve only recently begun playing this game and have fortunately remained blissfully ignorant of the Nazi symbol, though I have had to see my fair share of penis related imagery. Had I seen these emblems I would have taken what little action is available to me by reporting the player through the in game method or via Microsoft’s complaint feature. I understand that most of these ignorant juveniles are choosing the most objectionable imagery their addled brains can conjure up to cause a stir and get a rise out of people and that is the exact reason I support Treyarch‘s efforts to get rid of them as fast as they’re created.  I support freedom of speech and more importantly freedom to make an ass of yourself and that is why I raise no issue when coming across penis or other obscene emblems. Making penis emblems is distasteful and tends to harm the user rather than everyone else in that you’ve branded yourself with a penis, the digital equivalent of tea bagging yourself without the awkward conversation afterwards. Creating a Nazi Swastika doesn’t fall under this category in my book, that symbol promotes a message of hate and marks one of the most tragic and horrifying times in our world history. Even now in 2010 we are still able to see the effects of the concentration camps and that is not something that should be conjured up simply to get a rise out of people.

If you want to get a rise out of me, take the time to create an amazing looking emblem, or in the absence of quality make something that is amusing or clever. Take an extra five minutes and put some real thought into what you’re putting out into the world, in the time it took you to create that hateful image utilizing all the various workarounds you had to find to even make it in the first place just imagine what you could do with an emblem that doesn’t promote such a hateful message.

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