What would your impression be of someone who plays the online role-playing game World of Warcraft? Would it even be fair to have one?
While images of both teenage and adult geeks may certainly come to mind, the idea in itself wouldn’t warrant attention, as in some way or another nearly everyone nowadays plays video games, and judging someone’s character merely from that fact would be a tad whimsical. But what if a particular player was a politician running for office? Would the idea of them playing World of Warcraft be an amusing little factoid or something of political concern?
Well, if you’re Democrat candidate Colleen Lachowicz from Maine, this harmless hobby may be an issue, as rival Republicans have brought into question Ms. Lachowicz's fitness for office, saying that the Democrat candidate’s online avatar, an orc rogue, raises eyebrows as to her political and personal integrity.
Using this as a possible political tool, Maine Republicans have actually created a website that details Ms Lachowicz’s fondness for WoW. The website is called Colleen’s World, where the site creators highlight the Democrat candidate’s WoW playing, focusing on her avatar, saying, “Colleen Lachowicz is a Democrat candidate for Maine State Senate. In Colleen’s online fantasy world, she gets away with crude, vicious and violent comments like the ones below. Maine needs a State Senator that lives in the real world, not in Colleen’s fantasy world,” and posting numerous comments that the candidate made on the site Daily Kos regarding poisoning and killing foes within the game.
The site, though not authorized by any candidate, as a disclaimer from the bottom shows, is indeed provided for by the Republican Party.
Commenting on the above, Maine Republican Party spokesman David Sorensen said in a statement, "These are some very bizarre and offensive comments. They certainly raise questions about Lachowicz's maturity and her ability to make serious decisions for the people of Senate District 25."
Responding to this criticism, Ms. Lachowicz said in a statement, "I think it's weird that I'm being targeted for playing online games. Apparently I'm in good company since there are 183 million other Americans who also enjoy online games. Instead of talking about what they're doing for Maine people, they're making fun of me for playing video games."
Ms. Lachowicz is running against incumbent Republican candidate Tom Martin for Senate District 25, New England, and will be going head to head come Nov. 6.