To the editor:

(Re: “School Board OKs club for playing video game,” March 27, 2014) Recently I took a break from law school in Madison to come visit my family, and while I was there I happened to pick up the Commonwealth. ... Something in particular caught my eye: Ripon was forming a gaming club.

Great! I thought. As an avid gamer myself, I would have given anything to join such a club in high school ... Naturally excited, I asked my younger brother David more about the club. The conversation went something like this:

“So David,” I said, “I hear Ripon’s going to have a gaming club.”

“Yeah?” he responded, hesitantly.

“That’s so neat! So, they’ll be playing games like Limbo, and discussing how the dark, Noir style color palette is meant to evoke despondency in the player, which furthers the game’s goal of simulating a hopeless struggle through a confusing world?”

“Nope. Not really.”

“Oh. So, maybe they’ll be playing Deus Ex, and using the game’s almost Blade Runner like portrayal of artificial intelligence and human modification to help them foster philosophical inquiries into what it truly means to be human?”

“Um, no. Not that either.”

“Hmm. Hey! Maybe they’ll host gaming events in the community and raise money to fight disease? Kind of like the charity group Child’s Play, who last year raised over $7 million dollars for children’s hospitals through gaming-related events?”

“Nope. Wrong again.”

“Darn. Well, what will they be doing?”

The answer, as it turns out, is exclusively playing League of Legends, a game that I can — with experience as an avid gamer — declare at best as mediocre. Come on guys! Gaming is more recognized than ever as a deep, interactive, artistic medium of expression, and the closely knit community that is gamers has the potential to do so much good for the world.

A gaming club should foster camaraderie, explore human nature and the artistic medium as a whole, and help its members become more active, confident, charitable members of society.

But from what I can tell, the proposed club isn’t going to do any of that.

I wholeheartedly support a gaming club. But please — for me, and for the rest of the gaming community — do it right.

— Danny Garcia

W13819 Skyline Circle

To read the entire letter, see the April 24, 2014 edition of The Ripon Commonwealth Press.

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