OK, so "simply responded" may not be fair, considering "the man" who was threatened this weekend was Scott Ramsoomair, writer and artist of VGcats.com, who poked fun at Thompson earlier last week in one of his web comics. However, Thompson's response was very much on the bizarre side.
The e-mail conversation began with Thompson forwarding Ramsoomair an e-mail he had written to ESRB president Patricia Vance concerning the amount of sex and violence in Capcom's M-rated Killer 7. The subject of the forwarded e-mail read, "This sex isn't hidden, Scott. Wouldn't want the facts to get in the way or your drawing, now would you?". Clearly, Thompson is referencing the web comic here, along with all of the hubbub that surrounded the hidden sex "Hot Coffee" mod in GTA: San Andreas.
Now, before I continue on with the e-mail conversation, I have to say a quick something about the initial e-mail Thompson sent to Ramsoomair. Again, it was a forward of a complaint Thompson had sent to Patricia Vance concerning Killer 7, and his belief the game should be rated "AO" (adult only, for those 18 and older) instead of "M" (mature, for those 17 and older). In the e-mail, Thompson quotes a review from IGN, where the reviewer states, "...profanity, sex and bloodshed are commonplace..." and notes, "there are cinematics that feature full-blown sex sequences". Thompson gloms on to that "full-blown sex sequences" comment and uses it to make his case, stating, "There is no question in my mind that a video game containing 'full-blown sex sequences' cannot be rated anything other than 'AO' rather than 'M'."
Two things strike me about this e-mail. First, it's clear to me that the reviewer is doing what every responsible reviewer does, and that's to warn parents that, despite the potentially cartoonish look to the game, it's not for kids. Having played Killer 7, I can say I think calling the scenes "full-blown sex sequences" isn't quite accurate. Yes, it's clear that sex is going on, but I don't remember an ounce of nudity, nor, even, two bodies. The one sequence I remember featured a clothed woman moving up and down and moaning. It didn't last for more than 15 seconds. I believe the reviewer was exaggerating the sex, for the sole purpose of reinforcing the warning to parents to not let their kids play this game.
This brings me to my second point regarding this e-mail, and that's the fact that I am shocked any "attorney" would make any publicly factual conclusions about a subject without actually researching the subject. This is particularly astounding when that attorney, less than a week ago, was forced to retract a statement about Sims 2, when he incorrectly stated the game, "contains, according to videogame news sites, full frontal nudity, including nipples, penises, labia and pubic hair." Either Thompson was duped by poorly researched video game news sites, or he made his accusations up. The latter option would be a bit radical, even for Thompson, which makes me think he was duped. One would think your own public duping would make you want to double research everything you do, for fear of lacking credibility. Had Thompson actually played Killer 7, he would find the reviewer exaggerated the sex and the "M" rating is perfectly acceptable, particularly the M-rating that comes with the, "Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Sexual Themes, Strong Language" breakdown. Credibility and knowledge of subject are clearly not things Thomson holds in high esteem. I have to wonder about the kind of person, attorney or not, who dismisses these two traits within themselves so blatantly, which brings me back to the e-mail conversation (sorry for the detour, but I had to get it out).
So, where were we? Thompson had just forwarded Ramsoomair an e-mail with the subject line, "This sex isn't hidden, Scott. Wouldn't want the facts to get in the way or your drawing, now would you?". Ramsoomair responded with a definition of parody, and let Thompson know he was not fond of his tactics, accusing Thompson of having, "greedy goals at heart". A couple of snide e-mails were shot back and forth between the two, including one where Thompson told Ramsoomair to "knock it off", because he had been receiving many threats to his life. Ramsoomair's comments were never threatening, so why Thompson would think it was appropriate to bring up the threats against him was another bizarre stretch. However, the true bizarre nature of the e-mail conversation came when Thompson denied initially e-mailing Ramsoomair (Ramsoomair checked the IP in the header, by the way), then asked, "...are all of you gamers on drugs, or what?". When Ramsoomair forwarded Thompson the original e-mail he received from Thompson, Thompson called Ramsoomair an "idiot". Ramsoomair responded by calling Thompson a, "blue berry muffin of creamy fun". This comment forced Thompson to respond with a threat of legal action against Ramsoomair. Quite the response for only being called a "blue berry muffin of creamy fun". Personally, I think being called something sweet by another man triggered Thompson's homophobic tick which was made evident during his obsessive attacks against Janet Reno so many years ago.
So, once again, we have Jack Thompson, the darling of the media when video game violence is discussed, being lawsuit happy, lying about the writing of an e-mail, and displaying his pure disdain and disgust for the video game industry as a whole. His actions are not those of someone who truly cares about what he is doing, but of someone who likes the attention he is getting for doing it. Thompson seems to hold most dear his appearances on TV (as evidenced many places, including his own site). As poor as the media is these days (as evidenced by Thompson's ability to be questioned as a rational person), they do listen to the masses if the masses write to them. So, write to CNN, MSNBC, CBS and any other news station you desire, and let them know, respectfully, that Jack Thompson is not someone who knows of what he speaks. Show them evidence. Link to the e-mail conversation. Link to this article. Link to any of our articles about Mr. Thompson. Find other articles on other websites and link to them. Point out how disgusting it is that a man who reportedly believes God, "chose him to be the savior of widows and orphans", sues Sony and Rockstar because an abused foster child killed three police officers, instead of the less lucrative fight for a better foster system. We need to stop this guy. Not because he's a threat, but because he's an embarassment to the industry and humanity.