Gaming helped establish Edward Snowden’s moral fiber, which led to one of the most historical whistle-blowing act in history.
Snowden is the former National Security Agency contractor who revealed government surveillance secrets exposing the spying eye of Uncle Sam.
It does not come as a surprise that Snowden is in fact a gamer. His name was connected to a user account in the forums of Ars Technica where he gave reviews of the video game May Payne 2. In that forum he also announced that his new gamer name is “Wolfking Awesomefox.”
Glenn Greenwald, a journalist who wrote a book about Snowden reported in his new memoir that gaming is not just a simple past time for the former US Intelligence contractor. Gaming is an important part of Snowden’s moral development, Greenwald reports.
According to Greenwald, the main lesson Snowden drew from immersing in video games is that even one person, the most powerless can face great injustice. Most video games have themes were the protagonist is just regular guy who finds himself facing severe injustice coming from forces that are so powerful and the protagonist has to choose whether to run away and cower in fear or be brave enough to fight for what he believes in.
Ordinary individuals facing the most powerful opponents is a timeless story found not only in video games but in other mediums too such as history. The idea of a simple plumber in Mario setting out to save the princess and the adventure of a prisoner turned saviour in Elder Scrolls gives gamers the chance to be that regular individual hero.
For Snowden, he believes that the right thing to do is to disclose those classified information about the government stepping over the boundaries of other people and other country’s privacy. He is just a regular guy who faces the challenge to stand firm to his moral fiber by being a whistle blower against an organization that has immense powers that far exceeds his own. This task reflects the themes of years of experience in the world of video games.
Though Greenwald and Snowden has a wide generation gap when it comes to the gaming world, Greenwald saw that gaming can form people’s understanding of their purpose in life, their moral fiber, and political reasoning as much as literature, films, and arts do. Though others may debate that gaming destroys the children, the world may see a golden age for this industry where its narrative mature with the role it plays in the marketplace.