Michela Wrong uses her New Statesman column to argue for more corpses on TV as exposure to the realities of war – like the 800 civilians killed by the US in Fallujah over last couple of weeks – can only turn us into peaceniks.
News bosses seem desperate to save us from the horror, preferring safe images of ‘choppers rattling across the sky, marines opening fire in an eerie green glow’, you know, the kind of stuff that makes you proud. Yet I recall that before hostilities began, it was war supporters who wanted more gore. The argued that faced with images of torture, gas attacks and summary execution under the old Iraqi regime, the public’s natural – albeit base – response would have been anger and a call for revenge.
It’s not just war images that are censored. Concurrent with Michela’s campaign, others are fighting to ensure our television screens are at all times suitable for viewing by the most sensitive 10 year old. Nobody seems to be making the case that exposing children to violent imagery will produce more passive adults.
Violence begets violence – ‘why don’t we just bomb the lot of them?’ – more gore means more war supported by a fearful population whipped into a frenzy, like that of a ten year old shooting PlayStation monsters.