Esports journalist Rod “Slasher” Breslau recently appeared on Fox News to defend the video game industry and esports community.
His presence on the cable news channel follows recent anti-gaming propaganda from the network.
In the tragic wake of two mass shootings in America this week in which 31 people lost their lives, some politicians were quick to blame video games as the root cause of the violence. Fox News pushed the same narrative, and so Slasher stepped up to defend the industry.
Slasher was interviewed on “The Daily Briefing”, a segment hosted by Dana Perino that considers current affairs faced by Americans with a guest star. The episode began with Perino showing footage of various Republicans, including President Donald Trump, sharing their negative perspectives towards video games.
Slasher was quick to point out in his first line of argument that video games are played across the world. As an international phenomenon, they are played in nearly every country around the globe. He stated that in spite of this, “these [shootings] only happen in America.”
As the discussion progressed, Slasher also referenced previous occasions in which this discussion has taken place. Shortly after the infamous Columbine shooting in 1999, there was a drive to scapegoat first-person shooter Doom after the game was revealed to have been played by the assailants.
Politicians, Slasher argues, use video games as a scapegoat to avoid confronting real issues in play, “most namely guns, and the ‘access to the gun’ issue.” Slasher also stated that inferring that young people could be so heavily influenced by one of their chosen hobbies was “ridiculous.”
Perino also questioned the stereotype that young men who play games are often lacking in social skills, and how true it may be. Once again, Slasher defended the community and argued that for the most part, video games are uplifting, and that young children who could be lonely may find friendship in online gaming.
Open to an honest discussion, Perino didn’t simply point out one side of the argument. She also included an academic from the University of Oxford that clearly shows there is no link between real-world violence and video game violence.
After the show, Slasher thanked Perino for being a wonderful host on Twitter, as he had previously mentioned how nervous he was prior to the show. He pointed out that she had been professional and respectful of the video game community at large. He also reached out to his own followers.
“I hope I represented the video game and esports industry proudly for all of you,” Slasher said.