There are some things in this world that kids just shouldn't see. When it comes to entertainment, the list is long, but one name always manages to stand out amongst the crowd.
For years, Grand Theft Auto has been blamed for corrupting the youth of the world, despite the lack of any real evidence - that being said, it's definitely not made for kids, and young gamers should probably wait a few years before picking up a copy.
Most people, if they saw a child playing such a violent game, would probably try to inform the parents of its content, or maybe recommend something more appropriate...or, they could just call the police.
If that sounded extreme, that's because it is - but it's exactly what a school group in England is doing to parents whose children play violent video games like Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty.
The Nantwich Education Partnership, a school group based in Cheshire, England, has begun sending letters to parents of children who play violent video games. At first, that doesn't sound like a bad idea - it's helping parents know what their kids are doing, and it helps inform parents of what entertainment is appropriate for their children. Unfortunately, as the letter continues, things go from informative to threatening.
The end of the letter clearly states (via the Sunday Times):
"If your child is allowed to have inappropriate access to any game, or associated product, that is designated 18+ we are advised to contact the police and children's social care as this is deemed neglectful."
Let's be honest: kids shouldn't play Grand Theft Auto, and there are plenty of moments in the Call of Duty series that are clearly meant for more mature audiences. However, it's the job of the parent to be informed about what their kids are doing - while it's perfectly fine to inform someone of an issue, a school group threatening to call the police and/or child services over a video game is clearly crossing the line.
While nothing like this program seems to have crossed the pond just yet, it's easy to imagine a similar mentality becoming popular here in the U.S. - anyone who's followed the gaming industry over the years knows just how ruthless politicians can be, and the idea of the police getting involved would only make matters even worse.
We can all agree that something needs to be done to better inform parents of what exactly a game contains, but threatening to involve the police is clearly not the best way to go about it.