This guy needs to be in Iraq when we bomb!!!

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by train, Sep 9, 2002.

  1. train The Wildcard!!!...

    Who are the strange little creatures from Japan that have suddenly become global super-stars? Most kids know the answer well: They are called Pokemon (short for POCKEt MONster and pronounced Poh-keh-mon), and they have stirred up some mixed reactions.




    Ash and Pikachu on "loot bag"
    and napkin. "Gotta catch them all"
    "We just sent a letter home today saying Pokemon cards are no longer allowed on campus," said Paula Williams, a second-grade teacher in Danville, California. "The kids know they're supposed to be put away when they come in from recess, but they're often in the middle of a trade, so they don't come in on time. In the more extreme cases, the older kids are getting little kids to trade away valuable cards . . . . It drives a teacher crazy."1

    It concerns parents even more. "Recently, my children were given a set of Pokemon cards," said DiAnna Brannan, a Seattle mom. "They are very popular with the children at our church and elsewhere. I was instantly suspicious but couldn't discern the problem. We have since been told that they are stepping stones to the 'Magic cards' that have been popular for the last few years, which we do not allow."

    She is right. For instance, children exploring some of the most popular Pokemon websites 2 will find links to a selection of occult games. At the site for the Wizards of the Coast (makers of the Pokemon and Magic cards), a click on an ad for "Magic the Gathering" brings Pokemon fans to promotions such as this:

    "A global games phenomenon, Magic: The Gathering is to the 1990s what Dungeons and Dragons was to the 1980s, but with the added dimension of collectibility. Here is the official reference to the biggest new teen/young adult fantasy game of the decade, complete with full-color reproductions of every existing Magic card."

    THE POKEMON MESSAGE. The above websites gives us glimpse of the mysterious little creatures called Pokemon. Ponder the suggestions in this greeting:

    "Welcome to the world of Pokemon, a special place where people just like you train to become the number-one Pokemon Master in the World!"

    "But what is a Pokemon, you ask. 'Pokemon are incredible creatures that share the world with humans,' says Professor Oak, the leading authority on these monster. 'There are currently 150 documented species of Pokemon. . . . Each Pokemon has its own special fighting abilities. . . . Some grow, or evolve, into even more powerful creatures.. . . Carry your pokemon with you, and you're ready for anything! You've got the power in your hands, so use it!'" 3

    What if children try to follow this advice? What if they carry their favorite monsters like magical charms or fetishes in their pockets, trusting them to bring power in times of need?

    Many do. It makes sense to those who watch the television show. In a recent episode, Ash, the boy hero, had just captured his fifth little Pokemon. But that wasn't good enough, said his mentor. He must catch lots more if he wants to be a Pokemon master. And the more he catches and trains, the more power he will have for future battles.

    So Ash sets out again in search for more of the reclusive, power-filled, little Pokemon. His first step is to find the "psychic Pokemon" called Kadabra and snatch it from its telepathic, pink-eyed trainer, Sabrina.

    Or so it would seem to a first-time viewer not familiar with the contradictory themes. Actually, Ash doesn't try to "catch" Kadabra, an evolved version of the Pokemon Abra. In spite of the prodding to increase his inventory of Pokemon warriors -- and in spite of the constant reminders to "catch them all" -- Ash was merely trying to win a standard battle. With the ghost Haunter on his side, it should have been a cinch!

    But Ash underestimates the power of his opponent. When he and Sabrina meet for the fight, both hurl their chosen Pokemon into the air, but only Abra (who becomes Kadabra) evolves into a super-monster with a magic flash. Haunter hides. "Looks like your ghost Pokemon got spooked," taunts Sabrina.4

    Obviously, Ash didn't understand the supernatural powers he had confronted. Neither do most young Pokeman fans today. Unless they know God and His warnings, they cannot understand the forces that have captivated children around the world. And if parents underestimate the psychological strategies behind its seductive mass marketing ploys, they are likely to dismiss the Pokemon craze as harmless fun and innocent fantasy. In reality, the problem is far more complex.

    MARKETING A NEW LIFESTYLE. The Pokemon mania supports a financial conglomerate that knows how to feed the frenzy. The television series is free, but it drives the multi-billion dollar business. It also inspires the obsessive new games that disrupt schools and families by giving the children --

    a seductive vision: to become Pokemon masters
    a tempting promise: supernatural power
    a new objective: keep collecting Pokemon
    an urgent command: "gotta catch them all"
    These enticements are drilled into young minds through clever ads, snappy slogans, the "Pokeman rap" at the end of each TV episode, and the theme song at the start of the show:

    "I will travel across the land
    Searching far and wide
    Each Pokeman to understand
    The power that's inside.
    Gotta catch them all!"

    The last line, the Pokemon mantra, fuels the craving for more occult cards, games, toys, gadgets, and comic books. There's no end to the supply, for where the Pokemon world ends, there beckons an ever-growing empire of new, more thrilling, occult, and violent products. Each can transport the child into a fantasy world that eventually seems far more normal and exciting than the real world. Here, evil looks good and good is dismissed as boring. Family, relationships, and responsibilities diminish in the wake of the social and media pressures to master the powers unleashed by the massive global entertainment industry.

    No wonder children caught up in the Pokemon craze beg for more games and gadgets. The Japanese makers count on it. Since the means often justify the economic ends in the entertainment industry, the Pokemon website is full of tips, explanations, and ads that encourage the urge to splurge - and to express the darker side of human nature. Ponder their influence:

    "You can catch a Mew by cheating with a Gameshark."

    Ahhh. The Gameshark. . . Cheating is not honorable. But many of you have requested and sent me this information, so I have put it up for all you cheaters."

    "The Moon Stone evolves certain Pokemon, such as Clefairy."

    "Select your desired attack. Hold down the button until your opponent's life stops draining."

    "Once you have captured Zapados, you can use it to quickly lower the health level of Articuno. . . ."

    While children delight in these mysterious realms, concerned parents worry and wonder. What kinds of beliefs and values does the Pokemon world and its links teach? Why the emphasis on evolution, supernatural power, and poisoning your opponent?

    CHANGING BELIEFS and VALUES. Barbara Whitehorse started seeking answers after her son asked a typical question: "Mom, can I get Pokemon cards? A lot of my friends from church have them." Much as she wanted Matthew to have fun with his friends, she gave a loving refusal. Matthew's tutor had already warned her that the Pokemon craze could stir interest in other kinds of occult role-playing games such as Dungeons and Dragons. At the time, she wondered if the tutor had just over-reacted to some harmless entertainment. After all, the cute little Pokemon creatures looked nothing like the dark demonic creatures of D&D. But when she learned that a local Christian school had banned them because of their link to the occult, she changed her mind.

    Later, during a recent party for Matthew, Barbara heard two of the boys discussing their little pocket monsters. One said, "I'll just use my psychic powers." Already, the world of fantasy had colored his real world. So when some of the kids wanted to watch the afternoon Pokemon cartoon on television, Barb again had to say "no." It's not easy to be parents these days.

    Cecile DiNozzi would agree. Back in 1995, her son's elementary school had found a new, exciting way to teach math. The Pound Ridge Elementary school was using Magic: the Gathering, the role-playing game called which, like Dungeons and Dragons, has built a cult following among people of all ages across the country.

    Mrs. DiNozzi refused to let her son participate in the "Magic club." But a classmate gave him one of the magic cards, which he showed his mother. It was called "Soul exchange" and pictured spirits rising from graves. Like most other cards in this ghastly game, it offered a morbid instruction: "Sacrifice a white creature."

    "What does 'summon' mean?" he asked his mother after school one day.

    "Summon? Why do you ask?"

    He told her that during recess on the playground the children would "summon" the forces on the cards they collect by raising sticks into the air and saying, "'Spirits enter me.' They call it 'being possessed.'" 5

    Strange as it may sound to American ears, demonic possession is no longer confined to distant lands. Today, government schools from coast to coast are teaching students the skills once reserved for the tribal witchdoctor or shaman in distant lands. Children everywhere are learning the pagan formulas for invoking "angelic"6 or demonic spirits through multicultural education, popular books, movies, and television. It's not surprising that deadly explosions of untamed violence suddenly erupt from "normal" teens across our land.

    Occult role-playing games teach the same dangerous lessons. They also add a sense of personal power and authority through personal identification with godlike superheroes. Though the demonic realm hasn't changed, today's technology, media, and multicultural climate makes it easier to access, and harder than ever to resist its appeal.

    ROLE-PLAY AND PSYCHOLOGICAL ADDICTION. The televised Pokemon show brings suggestions and images that set the stage for the next steps of entanglement. It beckons the young spectator to enter the manipulative realm of role-play, where fantasy simulates reality, and the buyer becomes a slave to their programmer.

    Remember, in the realm of popular role-playing games - whether it's Pokemon, Magic the Gathering, or other selections -- the child becomes the master. As in contemporary witchcraft, he or she wields the power. Their arm, mind, or power-symbol (the pokemon or other action figure) become the channel for the spiritual forces. Children from Christian homes may have learned to say, "Thy will be done," but in the role-playing world, this prayer is twisted into "My will be done!" God, parents, and pastors no longer fit into the picture fantasized by the child.

    Psychologists have warned that role-playing can cause the participant to actually experience, emotionally, the role being played. Again, "the child becomes the master." Or so it seems to the player.

    Actually, the programmer who writes the rules is the master. And when the game includes occultism and violence, the child-hero is trained to use "his" or "her" spiritual power to kill, poison, evolve, and destroy -- over and over. Not only does this repetitive practice blur the line between reality and fantasy, it also sears the conscience and causes the player to devalue life. The child learns to accept unthinkable behavior as "normal" .

    To be a winner within this system, the committed player must know and follow the rules of the game. Obedience becomes a reflex, strengthened by instant rewards or positive reinforcement. The rules and rewards force the child to develop new habits and patterned responses to certain stimuli. Day after day, this powerful psychological process manipulates the child's thoughts, feelings, and actions, until his or her personality changes and, as many parents confirm, interest in ordinary family life begins to wither away.

    You may have recognized those preceding terms as those often used by behavioral psychologists. They point to a sophisticated system of operant conditioning or behavior modification. The child must exercise his own intelligent mind to learn the complex rules. But after learning the rules, the programmed stimuli produce conditioned responses in the player. These responses become increasingly automatic, a reflex action. Naturally, this can leads to psychological addiction, a craving for ever greater (and more expensive) thrills and darker forces.

    WHAT CAN PARENTS DO?

    It's hard to teach restraint to children who are begging for gratification. Wanting to please rather than overreact, we flinch at the thought of being called censors once again. Parental authority simply doesn't fit the fast-spreading new views of social equality taught through the media and schools. Yet, we must obey God. He has told us to train our children to choose His way (Proverbs 22:6), and we can't turn back now.

    If you share my concerns, you may want to follow these suggestions. They will help you equip your child with the awareness needed to resist occult entertainment:

    1. First, look at God's view of contemporary toys, games and cartoons. As a family, read Scriptures such as Ephesians 5:8-16, 6:10-18 (the armor of God); Philippians 4:8-9; and Colossians 2:9. Compare them with the values encouraged by Pokemon and other role-playing games.

    2. Share your observations. Spark awareness in a young child with comments such as, "That monster looks mean!" or "That creature reminds me of a dragon," along with "Did you know that in the Bible, serpents and dragons usually represent Satan and evil?"

    3. To teach young children a Biblical attitude toward evil before they learn to delight in gross, ugly characters, make comments such as, "Who would want to play with that evil monster? I don't even like to look at him. Let's find something that makes us feel happy inside."

    4. Model wise decision-making. Tell your child why you wouldn't want to buy certain things for yourself.

    When your child wants a questionable game or toy, ask questions that are prayerfully adapted to your child's age, such as:

    1. What does this game teach you (about power, about magic, about God, about yourself)? Discuss both obvious and subtle messages.

    2. Does it have anything to do with supernatural power? If so, what is the source of that power? Does it oppose or agree with God's Word?

    3. What does it teach about violence or immorality and their consequences?

    4. Does the game or toy have symbols or characteristics that link it to New Age or occult powers?

    5. Does it build godly character?

    In a nation consumed with self-indulgence, self-fulfillment, and self-empowerment, godly self-denial seems strangely out of place. But God commanded it, and Jesus demonstrated it. Dare we refuse to acknowledge it? According to the age of your child, discuss Jesus' words in Matthew 16:24-26, then allow the Holy Spirit to direct your application.

    Far more than earthly parents, God wants His children to be content and full of joy. But He knows better than to give us all the things we want. Instead, He gave us His word as a standard for what brings genuine peace and happiness. The apostle Paul summarized it well:

    "Whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy - let your mind dwell on these things." (Philippians 4:7-8)

    After hearing God's warning and praying for His wisdom, nine-year-old Alan Brannan decided to throw away all his Pokemon cards. "My friend did the same," said his mother. "Her twelve year old son had been having nightmares. But after a discussion with his parents about the game and its symbols, he was convicted to burn his cards and return his Gameboy game. That night slept well for the first time in a month."

    "It seemed to us that these cards had some sort of power," continued DiAnna Brannan. "Another nine-year-boy had stolen money from his mother's purse ($7.00) to buy more cards. When questioned, he confessed and said he had heard the devil urging him to do it. The family quickly gathered in prayer, then saw God's answer. Both the boy and his little sister burned their cards, warned their friends, and discovered the joy and freedom that only comes from following their Shepherd.

    By: Berit Kjos
  2. Zero T Katama Silver Shadow Guardian

    See, this is why Demons are oh-so-rare in Magic. But Bombing is not the answer. It's not like the article affects us directly. Heck the burning of Pokemon cards could be seen as a good thing.
  3. train The Wildcard!!!...

    Burning pokemon cards... I use them to wipe....
  4. MrXarvox The Prettiest Man Alive

    heh... what an idiot...
    It's a pity that people like that are allowed to raise children. Think of the warped creatures that their progeny are going to grow up to be. Constricting a child's thought to conform to your religion is really, really disgusting. Especially when it denies the child the right to play in favor of forcing ancient scripture on it.

    I want an hour alone in a room with that creep. I'll supply my own dental kit.
  5. Lotus Mox New Member

    "Berit Kjos is a widely respected researcher, the author of books and magazine articles, a popular conference speaker, and a concerned parent who has extensively studied current education systems and global changes.

    Kjos first became aware of New Age and occult influences in our society at a 1974 conference on holistic health. As a registered nurse, she was interested in methods of healing, but soon discovered that the occult powers found in New Age methods brought bondage instead of true healing. As a parent, Kjos became aware of similar New Age influences in education. She began to monitor the schools for classroom programs that taught occultism and New Age spirituality, then began to share what she learned with other parents and teachers.

    Kjos has given workshops and seminars at conferences such as the Association for Christian Schools International and CHEA. She has spoken at conferences for such groups as The Steeling of the Mind, The Constitutional Coalition, Child Evangelism Fellowship and Concerned Women for America.

    Kjos' book, Brave New Schools, surveys the scene in today’s public schools and provides guidelines for parents who are concerned about their children’s education. Kjos shows how myth, feeling, imagination, and politically correct stories are replacing truth, facts, logic, and history in the classroom. She also explains what programs such as Goals 2000 are all about, and why all students-even homeschoolers-eventually will be required to demonstrate competence in the new social and thinking skills before they can move on to higher education or jobs.

    Kjos is also the author of A Twist of Faith, Your Child and the New Age, and A Wardrobe from the King. Her articles have appeared in magazines such as Virtue, Moody, Servant, Focus on the Family, and the Christian Conscience. Kjos has also written numerous Bible study guides, booklets, and devotional.

    A frequent guest on national radio and television programs, Kjos has been interviewed several times on The 700 Club, Point of View (Marlin Maddoux), Bible Answer Man, Beverly LaHaye Live, Crosstalk and Family Radio Network. She has also been a guest on "Talk Back Live" (CNN) and other secular radio and TV networks.

    Kjos and her husband, Andy, live in California. They have three sons and two grandchildren."



    OMG, does this sort of ppl really have such an influence in America?

    I mean, why don't we simply start believing David Icke, while we're at it? :rolleyes:
  6. Seeker of Truth New Member

    It seems so ironic that self-righteous bozos like Kjos talk so much about how the influence of Pokemon essentially brainwashes kids into doing horrible and unspeakable things like...buying more cards (perhaps they don't know what capitalism is?) and playing make-believe (I'm sure their childhoods were spent quietly locked up in their rooms, reading their Bibles while the other kids pretended to be astronauts or princesses, or even grown-ups).

    Apart from the notion that these kids are not doing anything that other people wouldn't do, how much brainwashing do you think has taken place with this whole "Pokemon is the Devil!" garbage? I remember a few years ago Inquest magazine had a story about a church whose minister (or priest, or whoever is in charge of a church) took a sword and a blowtorch to a bunch of Pokemon toys and cards while the crowd chanted something to the effect of "Burn it! Burn it!" Yeah, that's the good Christian values people like Kjos want to promote in today's youth. :rolleyes:

    It's truly sick and twisted, and what's worse, because of the paranoia and bad feelings caused by 9/11, there's bound to be more of these kinds of fundamentalist, fanatical Christians who think that their belief system is the only one that can be allowed to exist and that anything that doesn't conform to their beliefs is evil and must be destroyed.

    Hmm...sound like someone we know? :eek:
  7. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    It's sad that these people just look at the "bad" and don't focus on the "good". I mean, no one shows that there are angels in Magic also...

    Parents should be educating themselves about what the game actually is, but of course they're brainwashed themselves or too lazy. And they're missing out on educating their children on what certain terms mean (I mean, summoning means "Spirits enter me? Hoo boy...)

    I agree that parents have the right to know and choose what their kids should be playing with or watching. If they feel their kid is too young to fully understand how Magic (or Pokemon) is played, then hold off on it. But they shouldn't be basing those decisions on terrible information and judgements...
  8. train The Wildcard!!!...

    I just think this guy should be grateful there are mind-exercising games like Magic out there. Who knows, his children may be banned from evil things like Magic, but I bet they have a red light and some Magic-al plants in the closet.

    It's always the ones on the crusade whose kids stray the farthest...

    He probably had his days at Woodstock, darn Druggie!!!!
  9. Seeker of Truth New Member

    I bet that they think those angels are sacrilegious. They're probably too busy looking at all those Mystic Zealots and False Prophets and thinking up reasons why white Magic cards are symbolic of and supportive of terrorism. Remember, kids, "Magic is the Devil!" :rolleyes:

    Ha! These fanatics are too wrapped up in their own self-righteousness to bother actually finding out anything about the game itself. You notice how much of the criticism from these crusaders focuses on things like the pictures on the cards, or kids corrupting the actual game with their own greed and poor moral upbringing? Never do they actually take the time to sit down and learn how "normal" people play the game; nope, it's just "blame the game, blame the people who make the game, etc."

    It's the same with those parents who pressure schools to ban books with "offensive material". Most of those parents haven't even read the book or know what it's about; all they know is that they heard from their kid that there's sex, or violence, or something else in the book that kids just are too sensitive to read about.

    I mean really, who actually goes on a crusade like this knowing all the facts? Nobody, because they'd realize how stupid they sound. And that's always the problem. :rolleyes:
  10. Shiro Time Devourer I have returned!

    Being a Christian, I can safely say that these games are only sinful in cases where there is heavy emphasis on occultic themes and when they are shoved down one's throat. I choose to ignore the worst of it, encourage others to do the same, and focus on going to 20, or winning the game by beating down my opponent's strategy using my own. The Bible says to focus on pure, edifying and good things and to let your mind dwell on them. Only when that passage is about to be broken is there a problem (I've seen it happen with some shows and some traditional aspects of D&D 1st.)
  11. train The Wildcard!!!...

    Rightfully said Shiro
  12. Shiro Time Devourer I have returned!

    I just noticed... the verse I quoted, Phillipians 4:7-8, was being used by the LOGOS guys with the 'Pokemon: Danger' article. Let's just say this: .IF you are tugged in and beginning to feel like getting involved in the occult by the game, then you should use that tug as a warning to get out. However, very few people are so tugged, let alone sucked in, by these games. If anyone else around you isn't in reality enough to stay keen, then you should acknowledge that there's a problem. Otherwise, there is none.
  13. Seeker of Truth New Member

    I think this is good advice for anyone. If, for whatever reason, you start to notice the line between fantasy and reality being blurred in your mind, you should not be playing these kinds of games that provide this kind of opportunity to become immersed in a story or a role. Sometimes, though, I think that there are people who are definitely "tugged" by these kinds of games, but they don't realize it, so it's hard to trust people's own sense of reality.

    However...


    The problem with this is that this distinction is too subjective. Who judges whether or not a game like Pokemon has a "heavy emphasis on occultic themes"? The problem is that crusaders like Kjos et al. view ALL these games as being overly occultic. It's why there was so much controversy over Harry Potter and why those books were banned in some places.

    Personal decisions I can live with. You think Pokemon is evil and you don't want your kid playing it, fine. That's your right, and I have no business telling you that you can't do that. But it's when these people start flooding the airwaves and the print media with these kinds of sensational, one-sided, uninformed, misleading horror stories in an attempt to foist their ideas on the rest of society that it no longer is an issue of personal decision; it's now an attack on every person's freedom. :mad:
  14. train The Wildcard!!!...

    Get 'em Seeker... I agree, I only pray this fellow's son does not grow up and get a job with Hasbro... He would then be a laughing stock...

    Isn't there a Magic card named after you... Well, almost...
  15. Seeker of Truth New Member

    It's one of the sad facts of life that despite all our best efforts to ensure every person's right to make their own decisions, there will always be those people who feel that they are somehow better suited to make decisions than we are.

    And the worst part about it is that we've seen this all before. From rock and roll to Huckleberry Finn , from gangsta rap to Pokemon, someone somewhere always seems to have this notion that people in general are unable to make their own decisions when it comes to what they listen to, read, or play. Correction: they think that people in general are unable to make "wise" decisions about those things.

    And then, these self-righteous idiots try to wrap themselves up in the Bible, thinking that their quoting chapter and verse or using God's name in every other sentence will somehow make people think that their narrow-minded comments are true and good-intentioned. Baloney. That kind of tactic may work with those people who subscribe to the same holier-than-thou philosophy that writers such as Kjos seem to follow, but for the rest of us regular people, I'd like to think we're far more intelligent than that.
  16. train The Wildcard!!!...

    I think this guy should cut grass for a living... that'd keep him busy - if he's not careful - I'll do to him what I did to Hoffa!!!
  17. Shiro Time Devourer I have returned!

    This guy doesn't need to be blown up, just because of overprotectiveness. He just needs to find enough people who play and have nothing put against their grip on reality or on the Word of God. That's all.
  18. train The Wildcard!!!...

    He may need to get his own grip on reality first...
  19. Svenmonkey Pants Chancellor

    He needs to put on some pants before he gets a grip on reality. I don't understand how he can censor his kids from everything when he himself is not censored. I mean, come on, his underwear is showing!
  20. train The Wildcard!!!...

    "Pants???" - Berit Kjos

    :D

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