Blockbuster Video, a US video retail chain, intends to put signs on shelves with action videos reading “In light of the events of September 11, 2001, please note that this product contains scenes that may be considered disturbing to some viewers.” (source) Labels will first appear on October 30, with the release of the John Travolta thriller “Swordfish”, which features terrorist activity. Funny aside, labels are intended only for newly released videotapes, DVDs and videogames. You may remain disturbed over older films showing terrorist activities without any warnings. Just so that you know.
But the idea itself sounds interesting and could be extended to other potentially shocking or outrageously funny areas, such as Austrian Freedom Party’s politics on immigration and asylum. Yesterday, two of its leading representatives – who will remain unnamed at this establishment – demanded that, in light of the events of September 11, all Austrians be finger-printed. Moreover, non-Europeans applying for political asylum in Austria should not be allowed to stay in Austria while their application is processed – instead, they should remain in a safe country on their home continent. In the end, political asylum in Austria should be restricted to Europeans. In a late-night discussion on TV, a Freedom Party representative complained about the fuss that this announcement had created and demanded an objective and factual discussion of their proposals. She was dead serious, but failed to specify how utter nonsense could actualy be discussed in an objective and factual manner.
Oh, what I would do if I was the owner of a video rental store! “In light of the bizarre and laughable announcements on the part of the Freedom Party on September 27, please note that this product contains scenes that may be considered disturbing to some viewers.”
Hm, now I’d only have to think about which films would merit such warning signals. Suggestions?