In an interesting and quite peculiar twist in the popularity of Pokemon GO (Free), the game has become a ‘weapon’ of choice for political statements. This story is so crazy, though, that you might want to take it with a pinch of salt because it borders on the unbelievable. The infamous Westboro Baptist Church – known for its protests of military funerals and other even less savory incidents – apparently got involved in a Pokemon war when its location happened to be the location of a Pokemon GO gym. So, an LBGT ally used a Clefairy nicknamed “LoveIsLove" to take control of the gym, making quite the political statement. The Westboro Baptist Church then decided that it could use Pokemon to make its own political statements and, in the process, fight against Clefairy.
First it recruited a JigglyPuff to fight Clefairy and then proceeded to use its Twitter account to encourage people to play more Pokemon GO, all the while using images of Pokemon to promote its beliefs.
— Westboro Baptist Church (@WBCSaysRepent) July 12, 2016
Now, this is so peculiar that I have my doubts regarding the veracity of this whole thing (I was even wondering whether someone hacked the Westboro Baptist Church Twitter account). Regardless of whether this Pokemon GO battle is legit or not, though, the fact that people are using the game to make political statements (real or not) shows how popular the game is becoming and how it’s pervading the culture. The AR nature of the game has helped it become a part of our daily lives in ways other games cannot, so I’m not surprised to see it turn into a tool to promote or criticize people’s beliefs. I wonder what the next battleground will be.