During a segment on Abu Dhabi TV, Emirati cleric Waseem Youssef said that today's generation is growing up playing "Fortnite," which is about "killing, destruction, stealing, and slaughtering," and that "[it is] producing a generation of murderers." He bemoaned that "Fortnite" teaches children how to commit crimes, kill, and use weapons. He said that his generation had grown up in a restricted environment playing "Super Mario" and "Snakes and Ladders," yet it had still produced ISIS, and he warned that the "Fortnite" generation might produce something even worse. The segment aired on September 9, 2018.
To view the clip of Waseem Youssef on MEMRI TV, click here or below.
"Even Though We Grew Up In A Restricted And Closed Environment, Our Generation Has Produced ISIS"
Waseem Youssef: "I was on vacation some time ago, and I saw a young man – a university student or younger – playing a game called 'Fortnite.' Did I say it correctly? Is it 'Fortnite' or 'Fornite'? Is it Fort, or For? Fornite. This game is about killing, destruction, stealing, and slaughtering.
"This game teaches them how to commit crimes, how to kill, and how to use different types of weapons. I was shocked by the young man who was sitting in front of me, and I told him that I wanted to hear what is going on so I could learn.
"When I listened, I realized that he was familiar with all kinds of weapons. I myself am not familiar with all those kinds of weapons. Maybe I am familiar with a few, which I have only heard about. But I am not familiar with all these M-16s and M-whatevers... The players talk to each other as if they are talking about their daily lives: 'Come here! Shoot him in the head! Quickly, shoot him in the head! Try this! Enter this house!'
"We are inadvertently producing a generation of murderers. It is all done through these games.
"Even though we grew up in a restricted and closed environment, our generation has produced ISIS. Right? ISIS was produced by our generation – a generation that was brought up in a restricted environment."
"If Someone Wanted To Listen To A Religious Lecture, He Had To Go To The Market, Buy A Cassette, And Listen To It... Yet Our Generation Has Produced ISIS"
"If someone wanted to listen to a religious lecture, he had to go to the market, buy a cassette, and listen to it. If someone wanted to use the Internet, he had to unplug the telephone line and connect it to the modem in order to watch or listen to a lecture. We didn't have YouTube. If someone wanted to play, he had to go outside and meet people. Yet our generation has produced ISIS – criminal killers who killed people from their own generation.
"So what would you say about this generation, who are growing up playing Fortnite, meeting virtual people, and playing games of murder and slaughter?
"We grew up playing Super Mario. You know this game, right? We grew up playing Super Mario, Snakes and Ladders, and other interactive games that were simple, beautiful, and made us laugh. But our children play games of: 'Kill him! Shoot him! Take his weapon when he dies,' and so on..."