PAWTUCKET, R.I. – Toy and board game company Hasbro has been faced with an onslaught of lawsuits from parents over the sale of Ouija boards, which the company markets as a way to communicate with the dead and open a portal to a realm beyond our own.
“It is absolutely irresponsible that they would market such a dangerous item to our children,” said Margaret Sampson, one of the many parents claiming damages from Hasbro after the Ouija board she purchased unleashed a demonic spirit that caused blood to run down the walls of her home. “Not only were the kids terrified, but we had to have the entire house repainted. It’s not cheap.”
Sampson is not alone. Among the many lawsuits are stories of furniture flying through the air, disembodied voices whispering in long-forgotten languages and children being possessed by evil spirits while contorting themselves into impossible shapes. The box in which the Ouija board comes in does not contain any warnings to these events, though it insists the board is appropriate for ages 8 and up.
Hasbro president and CEO Brian Goldner dismissed the lawsuits and defended the Ouija boards.
“We are in the board game business, and all games need an element of risk,” Goldner said. “The last thing you want is a boring experience.”
Some parents also feel that the lawsuits are an overreaction, and that some people are just trying to pass the blame from themselves and their children. “Kids act out, they always have,” said Brian Franz, father of two, as his youngest daughter levitated in the kitchen, eyes black and soulless. “To blame their behavior on something that is supposed to unleash beings from the world beyond is just passing the buck.”
Still, public pressure on the company has been mounting. Goldner, however, remains undeterred. “We’ve done this song and dance before,” he said. “We won Brantford v. Jumanji, and we can win this.”