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What's Modern Warfare Doing In A Special Needs School?

Illustration for article titled Whats Modern Warfare Doing In A Special Needs School?

That's what parents near Sacramento, Calif., want to know and, you know, I do, too.

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Officials at East Valley Education Center in Oakdale, Calif. refused to appear on camera, but it sounds like they were using video games as an incentive or a reward to help kids with developmental difficulties socialize. That's well and good if it's, I don't know, LittleBigPlanet or Super Mario Galaxy. Modern Warfare?
Officials at East Valley Education Center in Oakdale, Calif. refused to appear on camera, but it sounds like they were using video games as an incentive or a reward to help kids with developmental difficulties socialize. Sounds great, except Modern Warfare, an M-rated game, was one of them.

A school administrator backed out of an on-camera interview (which the reporter chippily notes) but said that the school would get rid of the games. Meantime, the mom and dad involved here say their autistic son came home with manifested anger issues, acting out and directing some of his behavior at his sister.

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Years of overreaction have conditioned gamers to mistrust hysterical parents and sweeps-hungry local TV outlets in the violent video games debate. But, at face value, this is colossally stupid. If the ESRB rating has any meaning, Modern Warfare is not appropriate in any school, regardless of students' needs. Someone's thinking lawsuit here, and someone else is probably looking at unemployment for Christmas.

Violent Video Games Allowed At Special Needs School [CBS Sacramento, thanks Mike B.]

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DISCUSSION

"Developmental difficulties" doe snot mean "totally fucking retarded".

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I have been consistently assigned an I.Q. around 150 (varying between 142 and 164) since the age of twelve. I enlisted in the United States Army at 17 (in the Delayed Entry program, so I didn't actually report for training until I was 18). Clearly, I am not non-functionally retarded.

I have also suffered with, yes, [i]developmental difficulties[/i] of my own. More than one, even. Just for starters, I was regularly in Special Education classes during grade school, due to a speech impediment (which still resurfaces when I get especially tired). Further, I spent the 8th, 9th, and 10th grades in a school for children and youths with emotional and behavioral difficulties.

Yet, I've also sat down with some very intelligent people, and quite impressed them with how smart and (in that setting) mature I could be, even from a fairly young age. I still remember impressing the hell out of a Boeing aerospace engineer when I was fourteen, for example, when we had a conversation - which, aside form a total lack of formal education in teh field on my part, was conducted at an otherwise fairly high conceptual level.

CoD is a popular game. Some of the "kids" in that school may be seventeen and eighteen years old ... and "Rated M" games are for ages SEVENTEEN and up.

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You mentioned, "Years of overreaction [...]". Well, let me smack you between the eyes with a nice, big clue-by-four for a moment you have over-reacted, yourself. Your entire article is an over-reaction, because you are erroneously correlating "special needs kids" with "every young, very retarded little children" ... when at least some of them may be (for example) socially-maladjusted (due to developmental deficiencies) seventeen and eighteen year old young adults.

TL;DR version: stop assuming "developmentally disadvantaged" means "drooling-on-the-carpet, hopelessly fucking stupid moron"

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