22 Jan 2010

Keith Vaz Bottles Games Debate 

When Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 was released last year, it brought some harsh criticism from some quarters - including a particularly stinging attack from the Labour MP for Leicester East, Keith Vaz.

So you would think that when invited to partake in a Westminster e-forum debate on games with industry figures and other MPs that Mr Vaz, who has a history of moaning about the content of games being too violent for kids (despite the fact that violent games receive an 18 certificate - therefore no children should be playing them anyway), would be very keen to air his views. But you would be wrong......

At the last minute, Mr Vaz let organisers know that "he couldn't make it". Thankfully, the rest of the panel, including Keith Ramsdale from EA, Richard Wilson from Tiga, Ian Livingstone from Eidos (who was Vaz's last minute replacement) and MPs Tom Watson and Ed Vaizey were all on hand to take him to task.

MCV reported that Ian Livingstone ripped into Mr Vaz, mockingly reciting some of his rabble-rousing buzzwords; "Games are evil, games are terrible, games are turning children into killers" and so on, while Ed Vaizey, in reference to Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez's recent outburst on games, said Mr Vaz should change his name to "Keith Chavaz".

Joking aside, this situation typifies the soap-box politics of today; too many MPs talking in moral panic-inducing soundbites to win votes from their constituents about things they know little of or have little interest in. Want to know what sort of a guy Keith Vaz is? Take a look at our past article from November after the MP had been spouting off about Modern Warfare 2.

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