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Societal/cultural standards and rules have to be taken into account.

 

We do make certain exceptions in how we view heinous crimes. For example, for a very long time, homosexuality was considered to be as bad as rape and people didn't even care when homosexuals were raped. However, a homosexual raping a heterosexual was seen as especially perverse. That has changed in more recent times due to changes in our attitudes towards homosexuals.

 

And even in today's society, prison rape is not considered to be nearly as bad as rape in other contexts. In fact, people make jokes about prison rape in primetime television shows and on late night talk shows. They even make "dropping the soap in the prison shower" jokes in PG-13 comedies where a lot of kids go to see.

 

Reminds me of this Boondocks episode http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_wWdTryqLY (some offensive material).  Male prison rape was pretty much the whole joke of the episodes.  I think male on male rape is seen as less offensive because generally men are seen as "less weak" and "independent".

 

 

There is also the fact that prison rape involves criminals and many people feel like the criminals are getting what they deserve.

 

Much of our morality is dependent on our ability to empathize with or feel compassion towards others. The advent of psychology has been a pretty big factor in our system of morality. We now know much more about how people, and animals, think and feel, and what experiences can traumatize them, so we are better empathize with them. As a result, we are far more sensitive to "evil acts" than before.

 

If the game is to deal seriously with evil, the lack of empathy and compassion is the main factor that has to be dealt with. It may not be malicious or even intentional. For example, the mentally challenged were often treated extremely poorly in the past simply because most people didn't even think that the mentally challenged could feel pain or despair, not to mention the superstitious beliefs about demon possession and curses. It could also be a result of how people are socialized in a culture. For example, in a lot of cultures, empathy and compassion are not considered to be very important for men. That's why male on male rape isn't considered to be as serious and there's a big stigma against men seeking therapeutic help when they suffer from emotional/behavioral problems or trauma.

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I'm just going to politely suggest that we return on-topic here, since it seems that most of the people participating in this conversation like myself lack any real knowledge or experience regarding rape (which is something that we might consider ourselves thankful for). Seriously, I'm all for discussion of any range of topics we might consider ourselves experts in (gaming presumably being foremost among them), but I think this sort of directionless discussion has a lot of potential to just result in people sticking their foot in their mouth and possibly even offending those whose lives unfortunately have been affected by rape. If we must continue along this road, let's at least avoid too much hypothetical conjecture and try to reign things in a bit.

 

Regarding what separates rape and child abuse from other evil acts, all I have to say is that it involves shattering the delicate trust that must exist in relationships of asymmetric power dynamics. This can have serious and long-lasting psychological consequences on an individual, which is something that I wouldn't think most games feel ready to present (and thus they probably shouldn't consider themselves ready to present rape or child abuse in the first place).

 

You just offended every person who has experienced torture on this board. As far as going off topic, this is spot on topic. We are discussing human psychology and ascertaining what is going too far and what is acceptable in games. If you and all those who liked your post have too weak of a stomach for these kind of discussions then, I would kindly ask you to leave this thread. Rape, torture, child killing, etc. is not something that should be avoided in a discussion, unfortunately all those things are part of the human condition and as such should be discussed and understood.

 

As for your take on rape, power is an illusion (women rape men), there is no trust between strangers of the opposite or same gender. Rape is not locked to the opposite gender (men rape men, women rape women). Torture leaves physical and psychological long turn damage, death leaves nothing, what exactly was your point here?

 

To add one more thing, everyone thinks that they have it the worst when something bad happens to them, people are egoistical creatures. But the fact is that how bad something is, is in the eye of the beholder, ie. not everyone would react the same to every scenario.

 

 

You do realize that you just proved his point, don't you?

 

And how is power an illusion? When someone stronger than you or has more friends than you forces you into a compromising position, is that an illusion? And did you just suggest that rape doesn't leave long term physical and psychological damage?

Edited by Giantevilhead
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You do realize that you just proved his point, don't you?

 

And how is power an illusion? When someone stronger than you or has more friends than you forces you into a compromising position, is that an illusion? And did you just suggest that rape doesn't leave long term physical and psychological damage?

No, I don't realize how I proved his point.

 

Power is an illusion, because it can't be measured. When someone is stronger then you then you use you brain to beat him, when someone has power through "friends" then that is not his power thus an illusion. Power can't be measured, because it is never constant, it depends on many variables. A weak man can rape a strong man if he smacks him on the head from behind and renders him unconscious. The strong man has more power and would win head on, but the weak man knows that and doesn't want a fair fight, thus in that situation the weak man has the power. But sure there is the plain example of, man sees a woman goes to her drags her to an ally and rapes her. But what if the women has a gun, or a taser? The power again shifts. It's not all black and white.

 

As for long term physical and psychological damage, well it depends. Most of the time there is only psychological damage, but sometimes there is both and sometimes neither. It depends on the situation and the mental strength of the person. Where as torture most of the time has PERMANENT physical damage and long lasting psychological damage.

Edited by Sarex
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Discussing whether rape is worse than torture or death? This is getting pretty off-topic.

Forums are boring if they just stay with a narrow focus, despite efforts of the backseat moderators anyway heh.

Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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I'm just going to politely suggest that we return on-topic here, since it seems that most of the people participating in this conversation like myself lack any real knowledge or experience regarding rape (which is something that we might consider ourselves thankful for). Seriously, I'm all for discussion of any range of topics we might consider ourselves experts in (gaming presumably being foremost among them), but I think this sort of directionless discussion has a lot of potential to just result in people sticking their foot in their mouth and possibly even offending those whose lives unfortunately have been affected by rape. If we must continue along this road, let's at least avoid too much hypothetical conjecture and try to reign things in a bit.

 

Regarding what separates rape and child abuse from other evil acts, all I have to say is that it involves shattering the delicate trust that must exist in relationships of asymmetric power dynamics. This can have serious and long-lasting psychological consequences on an individual, which is something that I wouldn't think most games feel ready to present (and thus they probably shouldn't consider themselves ready to present rape or child abuse in the first place).

 

You just offended every person who has experienced torture on this board. As far as going off topic, this is spot on topic. We are discussing human psychology and ascertaining what is going too far and what is acceptable in games. If you and all those who liked your post have too weak of a stomach for these kind of discussions then, I would kindly ask you to leave this thread. Rape, torture, child killing, etc. is not something that should be avoided in a discussion, unfortunately all those things are part of the human condition and as such should be discussed and understood.

 

As for your take on rape, power is an illusion (women rape men), there is no trust between strangers of the opposite or same gender. Rape is not locked to the opposite gender (men rape men, women rape women). Torture leaves physical and psychological long turn damage, death leaves nothing, what exactly was your point here?

 

To add one more thing, everyone thinks that they have it the worst when something bad happens to them, people are egoistical creatures. But the fact is that how bad something is, is in the eye of the beholder, ie. not everyone would react the same to every scenario.

 

I'm not sure how that can be the case when I haven't said anything about torture or its victims.

 

If power is an illusion then why is just about every minority disadvantaged? Be careful about how you answer that question.

 

I'm no expert on the subject myself, but I'm told by people who are closer to being such that the most common myth about rape is that it is committed by strangers, when in fact most cases of rape reportedly occur at the hands of people the victim knows pretty well. Also, as much as we might hate to admit it, the simple fact is that the vast majority of rape involves men targeting women; I'm pretty ashamed of that myself, but there's no good in denying it.

 

My point was that hypothetical reasoning such as yours (making the likely safe assumption that you have never actually experienced these things yourself) really doesn't have a lot of weight on such issues. Most of these acts (including but not limited to those that violate trust in the manner I mentioned) entail a level of suffering that an average person simply isn't capable of imagining, and thus it's utterly pointless to make statements like "you know, torture just conceptually sounds worse than rape to me", which is essentially what is happening here. We don't need such judgments in order to discuss torture and/or rape in video games anyway, so let's leave those judgments to those who have actually experienced one or both of those.

 

I'm not saying we shouldn't discuss rape or any other depraved acts, but the way that's currently proceeding is evocative of two fencers making blind stabs into the darkness between them. When you can't see where you're swinging, you can never be sure who you might end up hitting.

 

I'm not really inclined to justify the last bit of your response with an argument other than saying that such absurd moral relativism and insensitivity toward victims are precisely what I'd like to avoid this discussion degenerating into.

Edited by mcmanusaur
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Power is an illusion etc.

 

First off, "intangible" and "illusory" do not mean the same thing.  Unless you're making a philosophical point about the nature of reality here.  Power is very real, and that's not reduced in the slightest by the difficulty of quantifying it.

 

Second, I fail to see what's gained by trying to generalize about whether rape or torture is worse.  The psychological and physical harm done to the victim is so greatly variable as a matter of circumstance that any generalization is going to be false a large percentage of the time.  Personally, I find rape more abhorrent, but I'm certainly not prepared to make that a moral dictum, and I can't see how anyone with the opposite viewpoint could fairly do so either.

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If power is an illusion then why is just about every minority disadvantaged? Be careful about how you answer that question.

 

I'm no expert on the subject myself, but I'm told by people who are closer to being such that the most common myth about rape is that it is committed by strangers, when in fact most cases of rape reportedly occur at the hands of people the victim knows pretty well. Also, as much as we might hate to admit it, the simple fact is that the vast majority of rape involves men targeting women; I'm pretty ashamed of that myself, but there's no good in denying it.

 

My point was that hypothetical reasoning such as yours (making the likely safe assumption that you have never actually experienced these things yourself) really doesn't have a lot of weight on such issues. Most of these acts (including but not limited to those that violate trust in the manner I mentioned) entail a level of suffering that an average person simply isn't capable of imagining, and thus it's utterly pointless to make statements like "you know, torture just conceptually sounds worse than rape to me", which is essentially what is happening here. We don't need such judgments in order to discuss torture and/or rape in video games anyway, so let's leave those judgments to those who have actually experienced one or both of those.

 

I'm not saying we shouldn't discuss rape or any other depraved acts, but the way that's currently proceeding is evocative of two fencers making blind stabs into the darkness between them. When you can't see where you're swinging, you can never be sure who you might end up hitting.

 

I'm not really inclined to justify the last bit of your response with an argument other than saying that such absurd moral relativism and insensitivity toward victims are precisely what I'd like to avoid this discussion degenerating into.

 

 

Minority is a VERY broad term, and to say that they are weak because of their numbers is naive.

 

I really have the the impression that you haven't read this thread or my previous posts. So I will summarize it for you, the discussion was, why is rape treated as something worse then death and torture, when obviously the two are much worse.

 

As for the most common cases of rape, well they are the most reported cases of rape. It is considered that most cases of rape are unreported.

 

Are seriously gonna claim that rape can in any way, shape or form be worse then torture.

 

Ah, and now we come to this. To be honest I was expecting it. Well let me just make it clear, rape is a heinous crime and only weak people commit it, but to say that it's worse then  torture or death is very foolish. Now, does that belittle what the victims of rape went through? I think not, I could only imagine how terrible an experience that would be, but sadly I also realize that there are things still worse then it.

 

 

First off, "intangible" and "illusory" do not mean the same thing.  Unless you're making a philosophical point about the nature of reality here.  Power is very real, and that's not reduced in the slightest by the difficulty of quantifying it.

 

Second, I fail to see what's gained by trying to generalize about whether rape or torture is worse.  The psychological and physical harm done to the victim is so greatly variable as a matter of circumstance that any generalization is going to be false a large percentage of the time.  Personally, I find rape more abhorrent, but I'm certainly not prepared to make that a moral dictum, and I can't see how anyone with the opposite viewpoint could fairly do so either.

 

I now what illusion means, I said what I meant. Power is situational, it can be quantified to who holds the gun, and as such is an illusion.

 

That right there is what started the discussion, why do people consider rape worse then murder and torture (as some obvious examples). And if death and torture can be shown in a game, why then can rape not be.

Edited by Sarex
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Minority is a VERY broad term, and to say that they are weak because of their numbers is naive.

 

I really have the the impression that you haven't read this thread or my previous posts. So I will summarize it for you, the discussion was, why is rape treated as something worse then death and torture, when obviously the two are much worse.

 

As for the most common cases of rape, well they are the most reported cases of rape. It is considered that most cases of rape are unreported.

 

Are seriously gonna claim that rape can in any way, shape or form be worse then torture.

 

Ah, and now we come to this. To be honest I was expecting it. Well let me just make it clear, rape is a heinous crime and only weak people commit it, but to say that it's worse then  torture or death is very foolish. Now, does that belittle what the victims of rape went through? I think not, I could only imagine how terrible an experience that would be, but sadly I also realize that there are things still worse then it.

 

I now what illusion means, I said what I meant. Power is situational, it can be quantified to who holds the gun, and as such is an illusion.

 

That right there is what started the discussion, why do people consider rape worse then murder and torture (as some obvious examples). And if death and torture can be shown in a game, why then can rape not be.

 

First, that's not what I was saying, but good job further demonstrating your expertise with social phenomena.

 

Is rape treated as more evil than torture, or as more difficult to depict acceptably than torture (for reasons that I've already mentioned)? The point that I've been trying to make is that the former by itself is entirely irrelevant, and there are valid reasons for the latter that have nothing to do with the former. It seems that you are justifying this "discussion" via a giant straw man argument, when the real reason that you find yourself spewing such opinions is because you made a huge assumption and ran with it.

 

You are correct, and that is another fact that makes it even more difficult to try to make any sort of evaluative judgment about just how evil rape is in comparison to other acts.

 

I'm not claiming anything about whether one grave evil is greater than another grave evil; rather, I'm saying that there's little to be gained by discussing that in this context.

 

And what is the relevance of this dubious conclusion of yours to video games?

 

You quite evidently have no idea what "illusion" really means, or else you are purposely contradicting yourself. Now that I mention it, you're doing a lot of that by flip-flopping between unsubstantiated moral absolutism and moral relativism ad absurdum.

 

Reference what I said about a straw man argument above. No one is going to feel that they now have the license to tackle rape in a video game just because some guy on a forum with ostensibly no authority on the matter gave his hypothetical opinion about how it compares to other acts. Perhaps the reason why rape is treated as difficult for games to depict is for some reason other than the sheer "quantity" of evil or suffering involved, and discussing the latter has been as pointless as others and I have said it was?

Edited by mcmanusaur
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And if death and torture can be shown in a game, why then can rape not be.

I'm not gonna bother to weigh in on the morality argument, but I can answer this: Because there are very few real-life people who live with the trauma of being a victim of torture or attempted violent murder, and unfortunately very many people who live with the trauma of being a rape victim (1 in 6 is one commonly cited number). It's more upsetting because it's harder to abstract it and distance yourself from it.

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Ok so let's boil it down to the basics then. Looking at it for a logical stand point, are you saying that rape is worse then torture or death? Because all you discussion with me is boiling down to, you have experienced neither so you can't make that comparison. I know what both entail, so from that information I can make a comparison. We can simplify this even further, if you had to chose between the 2, which would you pick? The one causes permanent physical harm, the other causes temporary pain and discomfort (both cause psychological trauma). Tbh, I'm not really expecting you to answer that, but still ask your self and think on it.

 

And as for there being no reason to compare the 2, well there is already a comparison in every country, it's called the law. You are just deflecting everything I say and dismissing it with the argument you have experienced neither so you have no right to talk about it, which I think is absurd.

 

I'm not gonna bother to weigh in on the morality argument, but I can answer this: Because there are very few real-life people who live with the trauma of being a victim of torture or attempted violent murder, and unfortunately very many people who live with the trauma of being a rape victim (1 in 6 is one commonly cited number). It's more upsetting because it's harder to abstract it and distance yourself from it.

 

But then why do movies and books depict it so vividly.

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I think this thread has lost its way...becoming something that has very little to do with "what type of evil options do you want in a game" and why you think it would add to the game...and more about debating/cataloging the general "which is worse" philosophy of certain heinous acts.

 

While there's nothing inherently wrong with that type of debate, it is a topic that may be more suited to a Way Off Topic thread, if indeed it fits on these particular fora at all. At any rate...for the moment, I think this topic of evil in P.E. needs a brief rest.

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“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.” – Alan Watts
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