Pope Benedict XVI Denounces Violent Videogames
May 23 (LPAC)--On May 20, on the occasion of World Communications Day, celebrated by the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Benedict XVI's message for the event was titled: "Children and the Media: A Challenge for Education," reported the website, Catholic Online.
"Any trend to produce programs and products--including animated films and video games--which in the name of entertainment exalt violence and portray anti-social behavior or the trivialization of human sexuality is a perversion, all the more repulsive when these programs are directed at children and adolescents," the Pontiff declared.
The statement was part of a longer message, excerpted here:
"...Media education should be positive. Children exposed to what is aesthetically and morally excellent are helped to develop appreciation, prudence and the skills of discernment. Here it is important to recognize the fundamental value of parents example and the benefits of introducing young people to children's classics in literature, to the fine arts and to uplifting music. While popular literature will always have its place in culture, the temptation to sensationalize should not be passively accepted in places of learning. Beauty, a kind of mirror of the divine, inspires and vivifies young hearts and minds, while ugliness and coarseness have a depressing impact on attitudes and behavior.
"Like education in general, media education requires formation in the exercise of freedom. This is a demanding task. So often freedom is presented as a relentless search for pleasure or new experiences. Yet this is a condemnation not a liberation! True freedom could never condemn the individual especially a child to an insatiable quest for novelty. In the light of truth, authentic freedom is experienced as a definitive response to Gods yes to humanity, calling us to choose, not indiscriminately but deliberately, all that is good, true and beautiful. Parents, then, as the guardians of that freedom, while gradually giving their children greater freedom, introduce them to the profound joy of life...." (cf. Address to the Fifth World Meeting of Families, Valencia, 8 July 2006).