Knott’s Shuts Down ‘Insensitive’ Mental Hospital Virtual Reality Experience

BUENA PARK (CBSLA.com) — Knott’s Berry Farm has shut down a virtual experience designed to take visitors through a mental hospital scenario at the urging of local mental health advocates who called it “insensitive.”

“FEARVR” was an extra paid attraction of the park’s annual Knott’s Scary Farm event. Visitors wearing a virtual reality headset would be strapped to a hospital wheelchair during the 10-minute experience.

Ron Thomas, the father of Kelly Thomas, who was caught on video being beaten by Fullerton police officers in 2011, led the charge in calling for the attraction to be shut down. Kelly Thomas suffered from schizophrenia.

“As many of you know, Knott’s Scary Farm has an ‘attraction’ this year that depicts a mentally ill person killing and scaring people,” Ron Thomas wrote in a Facebook post. “I along with many advocates from around the nation have been working to get Knott’s to close this ‘attraction.’”

Saddleback Valley Community Church Pastor Rick Warren and his wife, Kay, were also among those calling for the attraction to be shut down. The couple’s 27-year-old son, Matthew, suffered from mental illness and committed suicide in 2013.

Knott’s Berry Farm and the entertainment company running it, Cedar Fair, decided to shut the attraction down.

A statement from the amusement park emailed to Thomas said the attraction was never intended to portray mental illness.

“As it is impossible to address both concerns and misconceptions in the Halloween timeframe, at this time we have decided to close the attraction,” the statement said.

The attraction was initially called “FEARVR: 5150” in reference to the police code referring to a mentally ill subject, but “5150” was dropped on opening day after it created an uproar in the mental health community, according to the Orange County Register.

Comments

One Comment

  1. Bob Baldwin says:

    This is too bad. I never want to have people offended by something I do or say, but on the other hand, those that found this attraction offensive could have just chosen not to go in. Those of us that love a good scare at Halloween are now cheated out of a fun experience. Thanks alot, Killjoys.

    1. Mark says:

      guess he needed something or someone to blame for his son’s suicide. What a hypocritical ass this guy continues to be for Orange County.

      1. Bob Baldwin says:

        You want to know another thing about Transgender people. Well, you pu$sies think I need so much protection when I already get paid more licking buttlips than what most of you’ll ever see with or without these people. Jail is punishment, but constitutionally it can’t be “cruel or unusual,” so every time you brain dead pu$sies give in and vote for more tough on crime laws check the “ferry dust” coming from my butt. Transgender is not sexual deviance, know your terms, dumba-$ses.

        I’m MIKE, the Original Internet PU$SY BlTCH, I get b1tch slapped by GROWAPAIR so I lick PATRICPARAMEDIC’s BUTTH0LE

  2. Mark says:

    Son kills himself and pastor puts on his morality police and fu^%s the rest of us —— church oversteps authority. Saddleback sucks!

    1. Bob Baldwin says:

      Too bad you don’t have something for me to suck.

      I’m MIKE, the Original Internet PU$SY BlTCH, I get b1tch slapped by GROWAPAIR so I lick PATRICPARAMEDIC’s BUTTH0LE and approve this message

  3. 1 Corinthians 10:21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons.

      1. Randy says:

        This is meant to be entertainment and I hope Saddleback closes down performance of “Oliver” and “Annie” for their insensitive portrayal of orphanages and foster homes. Enough.

    1. Bob Baldwin says:

      You want to know another thing about Transgender people. Well, you pu$sies think I need so much protection when I already get paid more licking buttlips than what most of you’ll ever see with or without these people. Jail is punishment, but constitutionally it can’t be “cruel or unusual,” so every time you brain dead pu$sies give in and vote for more tough on crime laws check the “ferry dust” coming from my butt. Transgender is not sexual deviance, know your terms, dumba-$ses.

      I’m MIKE, the Original Internet PU$SY BlTCH, I get b1tch slapped by GROWAPAIR so I lick PATRICPARAMEDIC’s BUTTH0LE and jack off screen names

  4. carlene says:

    Why do we always have to be so PC! If you want to go, look into first! If you think it would offend you DON’T GO!!!! I stay away from haunted houses, just ’cause they scare the S%&T out of me!
    Live and let live! Make your own choices!! My dear God, grow up!!!!!

    1. Lori says:

      PU$SY MIKE if not for “PC” then you couldn’t post with all the jerk off names, dicckless chickenshhit BlTCH

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