November 22, 2005

Bloody video game OK for kids: rapper 50 Cent

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Rapper 50 Cent, once shot nine times
on the street in a gang incident, said on Tuesday parents
should buy their children his new video game, rated 'mature'
for blood, gore and sexual themes, and use it as a teaching

The industry rating for "50 Cent: Bulletproof" means it has
been deemed "not suitable" for those under the age of 17.

"Just because it is rated mature doesn't mean you shouldn't
buy it for your kids," the rapper, whose given name is Curtis
Jackson, told Reuters in an interview on Tuesday. "Play the
game and explain to them what they are playing."

In the game, released just weeks after the popular rapper's
movie, "Get Rich or Die Tryin'," hit the screens, 50 Cent is
depicted making his way through New York's underworld with
armed guards and guns blazing.

Last summer the American Psychological Association,
responding to studies showing that violent video games can
increase aggressive behavior in children, adopted a resolution
recommending that all violence be reduced in video games and
interactive media marketed to children and youth.

The rapper, who has a 9-year-old son, defended violent
video games as entertainment. "I think everyone knows that a
game is a game. There's the part where you actually press start
on the controller -- after that you are playing a game."

The culture is rife with violence, in movies and in music,
he said. "The person that's influenced by a video game can be
influenced by anything," he said.

"If we have to take away video games, then we have to think
about other things," he said. "And then we have no
entertainment because we might influence somebody who's crazy."