An Xbox Live user recently inquired to professional banhammer-wielder Stephen Toulouse whether or not he could use a swastika as his Call of Duty: Black Ops
emblem, to which Toulouse responded, "No, of course you can't, we'll ban you." Apparently, this sparked quite a reaction from gamers who witnessed the exchange, who defended the use of a swastika as a symbol widely used throughout several Eastern religions. In a post on his personal blog
, Toulouse explained why this argument doesn't hold much water with the Xbox Live moderation crew.
"Let's be clear: no educated human on the planet looks at the swastika symbol ... and says 'oh, that symbol has nothing at all in any way to do with global genocide of an entire race,'" Toulouse stated, "'and, even if it did, one should totally and reasonably ignore that because it's a symbol that was stolen or coop-ted from religions.'" He succinctly adds, "If you think the swastika symbol should be re-evaluated by societies all over the Earth, I think that's great. Your Xbox Live profile or in game logo, which doesn't have the context to explain your goal, is not the right place to do that."
We certainly know that every time we see someone use the swastika as their identifier on an online game, our
first thought is, "Oh, how nice, they're pushing for a global re-evaluation of the meaning of the swastika." Like, that's just common sense, isn't it?