"We know that every father has a personal responsibility to do right by their kids - to encourage them to turn off the video games and pick up a book; to teach them the difference between right and wrong; to show them through our own example the value in treating one another as we wish to be treated. And most of all, to play an active and engaged role in their lives," he said.
"But all of us have a stake in forging stronger bonds between fathers and their children. All of us can support those who are willing to step up and be father figures to those children growing up without a dad. And that's what the Year of Strong Fathers, Strong Families is all about."
Never mind that games have been proven in numerous scientific studies to help with numerous mental conditions, from OCD to depression and stress; never mind that playing games is no longer a pastime of the younger generation, with the average player being aged 37; and never mind that many games have evolved into active, tiring experiences that encourage you to get up and get active - apparently, Obama can't see the positive side. In fact, by mentioning games in the way he does, he's actually associating games as being "wrong", while books are the superior, "right" option. It's a sweeping generalisation to say the least, and one that shows Obama's massive disconnect from reality - would any parent rather their child read "A Clockwork Orange", rather than play Mario, or Just Dance? What's even more frustrating is that there are numerous games that are perfect for forming a bond between father and son - possibly more so than any other medium. From LEGO Harry Potter, to even things like Halo, so many games now are designed to be played together, and work so well in a family setting. Games can do everything, from asking your child moral questions, and connecting in a way no other medium can, to bringing a parent and child closer togther. Is that really something you'd want to stop?
That Obama felt the need to mention games in such a negative light - as something children should stop doing, with no mention of their merits - is indicitive of the challenge facing the industry as a whole. Luckily, as more and more people pick up and controller for themselves and start playing, the number of ridiculous, ill-informed, and downright stupid comments being made by people in positions of power should start to decrease.
Well, you can hope, anyway.