ESPN has postponed the broadcasting of the Apex Legends EXP Invitational tournament due to the horrific mass shootings in the United States. The tournament was originally supposed to air on August 11, 2019, but has been rescheduled out of respect for those impacted by the tragedies. This ties in with President Donald Trump’s crackdown on violent video games, as he cited them as a leading cause for the attacks. Instead, ESPN will air “E:60 – Forever Broncos,” a documentary about a hockey team’s tragic bus crash, in place of the Apex Legends tournament.
The Apex Legends EXP Invitational tournament has been moved to October 6, 2019 at 5pm EST, with two reruns scheduled to air on October 15th and October 27th. This broadcast will feature highlights from the tournament itself and serve as a recap.
All of this was confirmed by an email from the network, which you can read below:
ESPN and ABC has made the decision not to air the TV broadcast of the XGames Apex Legends EXP Invitational that was scheduled for this weekend, in response to the recent mass shootings, according to an ABC Affiliate TV station source pic.twitter.com/6BMwdbk93t
— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) August 8, 2019
After President Trump began to blame violent video games for the mass shootings in the United States, many organizations spoke out against him, like the Entertainment Software Association (ESA). The ESA stated:
More than 165 million Americans enjoy video games, and billions of people play video games worldwide. Yet other societies, where video games are played as avidly, do not contend with the tragic levels of violence that occur in the U.S.
Members of the video game community have also spoken out, saying they believe politicians should stop blaming video games for the country’s horrific violence. However, other organizations seem to feel differently. Walmart pulled violent video game advertisements from its stores, despite continuing to sell firearms.
The notion of blaming violent video games for real life violence has been around for a while, despite evidence to support the contrary. The president’s opinion will likely continue to impact video games in some way.