Mar 022011
 

And you smell like Funyuns!

March 2, 2011

Nothing beats strapping on that AK-47, getting in the Kevlar-lined car, and driving down the street while gunning down a few dozen people for points, right?

Of course, it changes when it’s actual people gunning down innocent bystanders in one of the most violent cities in the world. And it becomes very personal for me when said city is in my home country and is, in many ways, the best evidence in the world against drug prohibition.

Call of Juarez: The Cartel is already drawing sharp criticism in Mexico and here in the US. Very few details have been released regarding the game. All we know is that the city of Juarez will play a central role and cartels will be involved, but that alone is so offensive that Mexican legislators are looking to ban the game.

Why the outburst, you ask? After all, the Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto, and other franchises have used glorified violence before right? Sex and violence sells, and this will be just another entry into a market filled with genocidal aliens, mobsters, and terrorists.

So what exactly is Ciudad Juarez?


Juarez by =Robowan on deviantART

Well, it’s one of the most violent cities in the world if you don’t count official war zones. Last month, the city averaged eight homicides a day. In 2010, the city had more than 3,000 homicides, more than double what it had two years before. A series of female disappearances and sexual murders totaling between 400 and 5,000 have rocked the city for years. The Juarez Cartel, also known as the Vicente Carrillo Fuentes Organization, is brutal to the point that it makes the deaths in Saw look like a Disney Channel movie of the week.

Short version? Ciudad Juarez and the cartel wars are a bloody, constant nightmare for millions of people.

I know people who have been kidnapped, not necessarily by the Juarez Cartel, but kidnapped nonetheless. I’ve walked the streets of Mexico as soldiers patrol in jeeps armed with fifty-cal machine guns. I’ve seen my beautiful Mexico reduced to a police state just to maintain some semblance of stability…

And I’m fine with this game getting released.


juarez by ~juanjosee on deviantART

Don’t get me wrong. No one knows as of this writing whether or not the players will play as cops, cartel members, or just unaligned badasses on the warpath. The very idea that someone thinks the violence in Ciudad Juarez is appropriate for a video game frankly sickens me.

But I’m all for Ubisoft releasing this game.

Will it influence people to join gangs? No more than Grand Theft Auto increased the stealing of cars or Mortal Kombat increased fights to the death. Medal of Honor didn’t make people join the military in waves. The only people who would be swayed to join the drug war on the side of the cartels because of this game are the people who are already sure they want to do it and are looking for a flimsy excuse.

I’ll tell people who play the game just what it’s based on. I’ll make sure they know that real people die those situations in the game. I’ll make sure people understand the drug trade is responsible for hundreds of thousands of ruined lives.

But I won’t call to ban it.

Let’s face it. What is one video game going to do that decades of the Drug War and heavily armed paramilitary cartels who decapitate their victims can’t do?


You Are Supposed To Protect Us by ~blackophelia on deviantART

  • I’m not sure how I feel about Nickelodeon making new episodes of shows like Doug, Rugrats, and other classics. Maybe they’ll be good, but I doubt it. They’ll have to fit them to today’s audience. and, let’s face it, my generation has different tastes. Speaking of which, when are they going to release Pete and Pete on DVD?
  • And finally, I hope this is a real movie, or at least a short film. Imagine every meme you ever watched on Youtube… in one movie.

Jan 052011
 

Just keep believing the narrative... just keep believing the narrative... just keep believing the narrative...

January 5, 2011

Are you gay? Bisexual? Thinking of changing teams after a drunken New Year’s night? Guess what? Republicans think you’re a bigger threat to this country than nuclear weapons in the hands of terrorists.

And no, that’s not hyperbole.

And if you don’t know what hyperbole means, here’s the link.

Last month, our government had to work to pass the START Treaty, a nice little piece of legislation from the Reagan era. You know President Reagan, right? He’s the patron saint of the GOP. They invoke him like a level one wizard uses magic missile. The treaty states that both Russia and America will lower their nuclear stockpiles and we will get to go to Russia and make sure their nuclear programs are working properly. This way, Jihad Bob doesn’t get his hands on a nuke and before we know it, Baltimore’s a dust cloud.


Physics Remain by *mrgraphicsguy on deviantART

And guess what? Republicans would rather have a major American city turned into a sea of glow-in-the-dark glass than have dudes who want to marry dudes serve our country.

They held up ratification of the START Treaty, a treaty that would prevent nuclear war, because they didn’t want to pass the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. That’s right. They held one branch of government hostage and held a nuclear gun to the world’s head because the thought of gays in the military repulsed them.

Oh, they paraded out the usual excuses. John “War Hero” McCain went off on people who claimed that discrimination hurt the military. Over at Fox, they’ve done a real bang-up job of likening the repeal of DADT to some sort of Apocalyptic herald. And yes, I capitalized “Apocalyptic” because I think they really think this means we’re going to have oceans of blood soon.

Don’t believe me?

So there you go. I already hold nothing but contempt for the Republican Party. They are a bunch of knuckle-dragging backbirths. No sympathy from me. They were willing to put the nuclear safety of this country, perhaps the world, on the line just so gays could not openly serve in the military. They also did this to try and keep the Democrats from scoring political points like this was some giant game of Battleship.

I have no love for the Dems, but I have utter hate for Republicans.

They put out a ton of heavily questionable reasons to ban gays from the military, but since they’ve all been exposed to be phony posturing, we’re left with one conclusion.


At the End of All Things by ~L-nay on deviantART

Republicans hate gays more than death itself. They would rather we get a few kilotons shoved up our butt than have gays serve our country and risk their lives. They would rather risk decades of deformity and nuclear fallout than risk openly gay men and women bolster our flagging recruitment numbers. They would rather that the population and infrastructure of an American city be destroyed in a ball of plutonium-fueled fire than have gays defend the Constitution Republicans themselves hold so dear.

The GOP has done some atrocious things in the past for the sake of political points, all hoping to just not let the Democrats do anything. This though, and the obligatory backlash to repeal the repeal, show the true face of the Grand Old Party.

Homophobes and bigots. If you’re a Republican, you have no business talking about compassion, common sense, and inclusion. And if you’re gay, bisexual, or transgendered, remember this. The Republicans believe you are more dangerous than nuclear weapons.

Nothing but unhinged contempt is required here.


No Homophobia by ~Lexee90 on deviantART

And now, to clean the taste of Republican exposure out of your brain, here are the links!

  • Would you like your next sexual innuendo to be REALLY cool? Here’s a chart! Likewise, if you want to last longer with your significant other and you have a penchant for the scientific and philosophical, here’s a guide.
  • It looks like the cartels in Mexico are calling a month-long truce. I’m pretty sure this is a trap of some sort, but let’s see how it plays out.
  • Look, I’ve made no secret of my hatred for bad writing that gets put up like it’s some new standard to achieve… and I’ve worked hard at what I do… which makes it that much more infuriating when Snooki of all people gets a book deal just because she was on a show where she and a bunch of other D-bags made a whole state look bad. And it looks like she’s giving the great American writers a run for their money. And it saddens me that the sarcasm in the last sentence doesn’t translate well through text.
  • And speaking of the genetic landfill that is Jersey Shore, the Situation also has a book out. This has to be the greatest review ever.
  • And finally, here’s a video that made even ME smile. The happiest penguin ever. Take care, don’t forget to share the link, and I’ll see you Friday.

Oct 222010
 

October 22, 2010

It’s been one of those days. Months. Three months. Short version: this job is killing me for all the wrong reasons. I’ll elaborate more later, but suffice to say that my letter of resignation is in the mail and I’ll be going back to teaching and tutoring, something which, amazingly, is less stressful that working with deer.

“Diego’s Day,” the next chapter in Charcoal Streets got caught in the maelstrom and won’t be ready for a few days. It’s a combination of work that caught up with me and the fact that it turned out to be a little more personal than I thought.

In the meantime, let’s enjoy an assault of links from the world wide intertubes!

  • First off, a little something from hom. I was unaware we could not eat vegetarians, not just “vegetarian.”

  • Even if marijuana isn’t “legalized” in California, it’s apparently still ridiculously easy to get pot through the restricted means. Check out this informative video from CNN!
  • Almost everyone has seen the map of the internet, but at xkcd, they have a new, updated map. Looks like Facebook has grown quite a book, and if Skype isn’t careful, it may get invaded by Farmville.
  • Some parents are apparently mad at a photoshoot featuring some of the cast of Glee. They say it promotes pedophilia to have these girls dressed up in school outfits and then stripping. It makes sense… except that the actresses are in their 20′s and I’m sure no one outside of a school has ever worn a plaid skirt and pig tails. Right? Huh? Right? Also, in a final slap to these idiots, you can see the pics if you follow the link.
  • Mexico is being torn apart by the wars between the cartels, so the only obvious choice for a new police chief is… a 20-year-old woman who ran unopposed for the position. Okay, I have to give this young lady points for guts… but I have no clue what she intends to do. And I hope she stays safe.
  • Dark Archivist wrote a wonderful post on the tolerance of intolerance. She makes some good points, and she’s always a fun read. Check her out.
  • Dan Savage wrote a powerful response to a Christian who said he was offended by remarks that intolerance from Christians contributed to the recent gay youth suicides. I can sum it up thus: “Fuck your feelings.” It’s one of the most moving responses to the “It’s what my religion teaches” argument.
  • A Florida immigration law in the works will apparently target immigrants in much the same way as Arizona’s law… except that this law will exempt white people from scrutiny because, as we all know, European and Canadian immigrants are always cool. It’s those brown one we have to worry about.
  • Rumors of a remake to the cult classic The Crow starring Brandon Lee have been running around since at least last year. I’m on the fence about this. On the one hand, I love the movie, but think something closer to the comic would have been so much better. On the other hand, the original will always have a special place in my heart. Then again… now the rumor is that Mark Wahlberg may be staring in it. And right there you lost me.
  • And finally, are you still voting Republican? Let’s look at the Republican goals for this year, shall we?