Pokémon is Evil – FSPR77

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A tongue-in-cheek look at the nonsense controversies surrounding the Pokémon franchise such as Pokémon being evil and forcing children to misbehave.
Pokemon is evil, Ash Ketchum

Pokémon Is Evil!

Unfortunately, some people think Pokémon is evil. Pokémon has been said to have occult roots and causes children to misbehave. Back in the late 1990s, Mark Juvera, a children’s pastor in Colorado, burned Pokémon cards with a blowtorch and stabbed a Pokémon action figure with a sword.

Another pastor, David Browd, Ph.D., wrote a page on his website about the idea of Pokémon being part of the occult and causes children to become evil. He ends his article by stating that “Pokémon does not measure up! I suggest the best place for Pokémon paraphernalia is in the trash can!” Dude, if you don’t like Pokémon, maybe you might want to give Digimon a try? It’s pretty good, too. Here is the link to his article The Problem With Pokémon, as it’s too long to quote here.

This is an article that ran in Electronic Gaming Monthly back in 1999 about Mark Juvera:

Poke-Banned: The Dark Side of Pikachu

There are people who don’t like Pokemon, and then there are people who really don’t like Pokemon.

Sometimes they even make headlines. Mark Juvera, a children’s pastor at Grace Fellowship Church in Colorado Springs, Colo., nabbed national attention in August when he took a sword and soldering iron to Pokemon merchandise in front of dozens of kids during one of his church services. While he says the whole thing’s been blown out of proportion (newspaper reporters claim he used a blowtorch to incinerate trading cards, when he really just singed them with the iron), Juvera readily admits to bringing his wrath down on Pokemon. “We do have a sword, which is symbolic of the word of God,” he told us,” and we struck a stuffed animal-that Pikachu guy-with it. The sword isn’t sharp, and since Pikachu is soft, we didn’t cut it. We only struck it one time and then ripped it apart so no one could take it from the trash.”

Juvera said he gave little thought to Pokemon (his 9-year-old son had even amassed more that $400 worth of games and toys) until he read an e-mail on the evils of Pikachu and his ilk. “I learned it can be stepping stone toward other role-playing games like Magic the Gathering,” he said. “And I saw that one of the videos is titled ‘Psychic Friends.’ When it starts talking about the ability to use psychic power, magic and things like that, well, all that’s totally opposite of what we Christains believe.”

Juvera’s son has stopped playing with Pokemon, and the pastor thinks he has other kids thinking twice about the pocket monster craze, too. “I had one girl in the service tell me that they’re not allowing Pokemon in her public school anymore.”

In fact, several schools across the country have banned Pokemon cards and the Game Boy games. They’re too distaracting, say some teachers, while others fear that bigger kids are bullying younger ones into unfair Pokemon trades.

Cripes-and we thought it was bad when they just took our lunch money.

Further reading

Here is an article that was shared in the comments below by Heikkila from the forums. For those of you who either aren’t old enough to know, or haven’t looked into the subject – games have been protested against for the longest time, way before Pokémon even existed. The article, How We Won the War on Dungeons & Dragons by Annalee Newitz of io9, is a great read on misinformation being spread easily by those who don’t want people to enjoy a harmless game.

As gamers, we should take a stand against people like Mark Juvera and David Brown. Not in any violent way, of course – I’m not advocating violence at all. I’m calling anyone who reads this to enjoy all of your games, no matter what type of game it is. Know that every time you play your game, you are taking a huge protest against people who hate you for playing Pokémon, Dungeons & Dragons, Call of Duty, Halo, Mortal Kombat, Grand Theft Auto, etc. Games are a non-violent form of expression, so who’s to say that you can appreciate this wonderful art form?

Pokémon of the Episode: #666 Vivillon

VivillonVivillon is the Scale Pokémon. It can have the Abilities Shield Dust, Compoundeyes, or the Hidden Ability Friend Guard. It stands at 3’11” (1.2m) tall and weighs 37.5 pounds (17kg). Vivillon is Bug- and Flying-type.

Scatterbug evolves into Spewpa at level 9, and then evolves into Vivillon at level 12.

Vivillon has different patterns, depending on the geographic area set on your 3DS. It has 18 different patterns that you will need to trade with people all over the world in order to see.

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8 comments on “Pokémon is Evil – FSPR77
  1. Profile photo of Hinaku Hinaku says:

    For the record, my parents are Christians and sure at first they were a little wary with it because of all these ‘crazy’ stories but after watching a few episodes with me (i even taught my dad how to play a few games) they didn’t see anything wrong with it.

    I guess what I’m trying to say is that not all religious people are against it.

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    • Profile photo of Austin Austin says:

      Hinaku, I’m not discrediting all religious people. But you do have to admit that there are some extremists that don’t think before they take action. I was raised Catholic, but I never took a stand against Pokémon, nor did my family. In fact, my mom bought me my first Game Boy with Pokémon Blue version when I was 9 years old. She did not need to look into Pokémon first because she knew that I would be able to make that judgement call on my own. She taught me right from wrong and knows I am able to do the right things. My mom is understanding like that.

      I feel relieved when I hear that people can be understanding of others’ likes and dislikes. I’m happy your parents did not see anything wrong with Pokémon (because there isn’t) and allowed you to keep playing. 🙂

      If there is something wrong, it’s these extremists who butchered a poor stuffed Pikachu like savages and burned Pokémon cards. Those people are completely messed up in the head.

  2. Profile photo of Etho Etho says:

    Finally this has been goig on in my life forever. Pokemon can make the bratty more bratty and evan a kid steal. i have seen a kid in walmart steel a pokemon plush and when the alarms went off he bribed his mother for it

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    • Profile photo of Austin Austin says:

      Etho, it’s not Pokémon that makes a bratty kid more bratty or want to steal. Yes, I’ve seen kids steal Pokémon things at times, but I’ve seen plenty of people steal other things, too. I used to work at a retail store and watched a kid steal a box of Yu-gi-oh! cards. There’s likely an underlying issue with the person which compelled him or her to steal. I’ve seen kids go crazy because they wanted to eat ice cream, but it’s not the ice cream’s fault. It’s the person’s lack of self control and discipline.

      Please don’t put the blame on Pokémon. There are many reasons that could compel a thief to steal or a brat to be more bratty. In many cases, especially when it’s a child who acts out, I blame the parents for not teaching their children what is right and wrong.

      If anything, Pokémon teaches that stealing is wrong. For example, you’re not allowed to steal another Trainer’s Pokémon. Also, Team Rocket are considered the bad guys because they are thieves.

  3. Profile photo of Etho Etho says:

    Ok but I do not agree with the nut jobs you talked about those people are SUPER CRAZY

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  4. Profile photo of Etho Etho says:

    I do no blame to Pokemon

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  5. Profile photo of heikkila heikkila says:

    Good podcast this week. I found it interesting to hear about a game as positive and non-threatening as Pokemon being called evil. As I was in my late 20s when the Pokemon games started, I never had a parent or group telling me I couldn’t play. I did have some similar issues playing D&D while in a Catholic home and Catholic high school. I was lucky to have parents who learned about the game and were able to identify the positives. Also, this recent article on io9 about D&D might be of interest to people:

    http://io9.com/how-we-won-the-war-on-dungeons-dragons-1550936588

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    • Profile photo of Austin Austin says:

      Heikkila, I’m honestly not surprised that this has been going on for much longer than Pokémon. What does shock me is that certain hardcore groups are so determined to control the minds of others that they would resort to creating misinformation to scare people. These are simply games that we play for entertainment. Dungeons and Dragons is simply a game where you play an imaginary character in an imaginary world, what’s so bad about it? It reminds me of George Orwell’s 1984 and the “thoughtcrimes” that one could commit. If you even think of something that Big Brother deems wrong, then you a bad person or a criminal.

      The article you linked (great read) made me realize that no matter what, there will always be closed-minded, ignorant people out there. It sickens me that there are terrible people that would do something so horrific and lie about innocent games.

      And thank you for the compliment about this episode. I have been holding this subject back for a long time because I wanted to make sure I gathered my thoughts appropriately. I’m usually pretty vocal about my advocacy for video games and my disgust for those who try to censor video games and other expressions of creativity. I just don’t talk about it on the podcast.

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