A new report by Common Sense Media shows 75 per cent of parents believe violence in video games contributes to children under 18 becoming more violent when they grow up.
Which begs the question: “Why are you letting your child play violent games?”
Violence in video games should have absolutely no effect on children whatsoever. Why? Because video games, just like films, have age certification. If a 14-year-old walks into a store and attempts to buy a game with an 18 certificate, they will not succeed. An adult has to buy an adult game. This is a fact.
True, your child could visit a friend’s house and play a violent game without you knowing, but does this warrant the reaction we have seen in Southington, Connecticut, where members of the public were encouraged to hand over violent films, music and video games in return for a $25 gift certificate?
This ‘violent video games protest’ ended up being cancelled due to ‘an unnecessary amount of logistical details’, proving the headache of organising a protest overrules the worry that the ‘violent media’ didn’t end up on a giant bonfire, helping our children becoming cured of any violent tendencies.
This potential protest was in response to the recent Sandy Hook Elementary shootings – an absolutely awful incident where a young man opened fire on students and teachers at the school.
America made its usual connection between murderers and video games, and now towns like Southington are panicking that their children could grow up to become horrifically violent because they saw a Call Of Duty advert on the TV.
Back to Common Sense Media’s report, the results reveal that the parents questioned seemed to find and minute violence in any aspect of the media, sport or at school a contributing factor to America’s ‘culture of violence’, proving that parents are just fearful in general of the children seeing anything they shouldn’t. Obviously wanting to protect your child is a very normal reaction, but why are video games being singled out?
When asked ‘Is shielding your children from violence difficult or easy?’ 75 per cent said it was difficult. Perhaps they should start with treating violent games in the way they were intended – for adults.
Over here in the UK, we also have some incredibly ignorant views on violence in video games, and here is a great example of how some people simply refuse to accept that there is not concrete evidence that there is a link between violence in video games, and violence in the real world:
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