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Video games not the root of violent crimes

By Optimist Editorial Board
Posted on March 21, 2013 | Editorials,Opinion | Comments Off on Video games not the root of violent crimes

Many of the top selling video games in recent years share one prominent aspect in common: violence. Multiple Assassin’s Creed, Halo and Call of Duty (among other) games flood the gaming stores and many young people’s consoles. These games primarily focus on killing characters, most of which portray humans.

Many point to frequent use of the violent games as a possible main reason why some people commit real-world violence. Game advocates defend the games as outlets for aggression, among other things.

The Entertainment Software Association, an organization dedicated to the public affairs and business of companies that produce computer and video games, has published some research that refutes the implication that violent video games directly cause users to commit violent crimes.

Numerous authorities, including the U.S. Supreme Court and the Federal Trade Commission, found no casual link between media content and real-life violence.

In Brown v. EMA/ESA, the Supreme Court struck down a California law created in 2005 that banned the sale of some video games to children. The law, introduced by California state senator Leland Yee, was intended to end a supposed connection between violent games and aggressive behavior in children. But the facts proved that link wasn’t as concrete as the state had thought. In the majority opinion, justice Antonin Scalia said, “Psychological studies purporting to show a connection between exposure to violent video games and harmful effects on children do not prove that such exposure causes minors to act aggressively.”

According to a Washington Post research story, a comparison between 10 countries, including the U.S., suggests little to no relationship between video games and gun murders. The U.S. has much higher gun-related murders than the other nine countries, which included Canada, China, Germany and Australia, but the U.S.’s video game spending per capita was lower the most of the other countries.

Playing these games in moderation is not a main cause of aggression or violence in the real world. When used too much, they can desensitize and negatively affect users, but they don’t create violent crimes in the real world.

avatar Posted by Optimist Editorial Board on Mar 21st, 2013 and filed under Editorials, Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.  - This post has been viewed 8763 times.

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