| CAMBRIDGE, Mass.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. Jan 11 Massachusetts has
pulled violent arcade games from its highway service plazas
after a family raised concerns they might offend residents of
neighboring Connecticut, which last month witnessed the
second-deadliest school shooting in U.S. history.
Tracey and Andrew Hyams called for the games' removal
because they thought residents of Newtown, Connecticut, might
stumble across them, Massachusetts transportation department
spokeswoman Sara Lavoie said on Friday. A gunman killed 20 first
graders, six adults and himself in a Dec. 14 attack on Sandy
Hook Elementary School in Newtown.
The couple and their children were driving to Boston from
New York on Christmas Eve when they stopped at a rest stop about
an hour's drive from the Newtown and saw a young man pointing a
life-size toy machine gun at a video game machine.
"We were struck by the possibility that someone from the
Newtown community, driving east for the Christmas holiday, might
stumble across this scene," they wrote in an e-mail message to
the Department of Transportation.
Such games "have no place in state-sponsored highway rest
stops - particularly those in such close proximity to real-life
tragedy," the email continued.
In response to the complaint, Massachusetts authorities
asked service plaza operators to remove violent arcade games at
rest stops across the state. Nine games were replaced or removed
from plazas operated by Burger King or McDonald's Corp,
the spokeswoman said.
The Newtown attacks, which left a total of 28 dead including
the gunman's mother, has led to calls for a boycott of violent
video games, with some Americans worried they can desensitize
players to violence in the real world.
Vice President Joe Biden, who is heading a White House panel
aimed at coming up with ways to stop gun violence, is due to
meet with representatives of the movie and video game industry