Video Game Violence Distracts from Real Issues

This week, the president met with representatives from the video game industry. They discussed the possible link between violence depicted and real events. We’ve been down this road before. The search for the boogeyman has been through music, Dungeons & Dragons, Pokémon, and now back to video games again. As always, the cause of gun violence is anything but guns. The meeting at the White House was a closed session, not open to reporters. No point or conclusion was met.

Past studies have shown that there is no connection between gaming and actual violence. People are not heading out on shooting sprees after gaming sessions any more than they gardened after playing FarmVille. The most popular games, like Call of Duty and Overwatch, are played all over the world. Same with movies. In countries where guns are not so easily obtained, they don’t have the types of mass shootings we have here in the US. Why does the president think only Americans are impressionable when it comes to games? Every time someone says, “Maybe it’s the guns,” the NRA and those they fund start pointing elsewhere.

Video game violence

Are there some games that take things too far with violence? Yes, there are examples that most people would agree are in bad taste and not for younger players. These games come with an established rating system, and the parents should be paying attention to what their children are playing. People love to say that ratings systems should be enforced more strictly, but what would that mean? Should parents be fined or jailed if it’s found that their child was exposed to inappropriate content? If you’re not a fan of big government regulating how you raise your children, then you probably wouldn’t buy into that.

Trump addresses NRA
President Donald Trump arrives to address the National Rifle Association (NRA) Leadership Forum in Atlanta, Georgia on April 28, 2017 JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images

Violence in games is not the problem. Violence in movies is not the problem. Disturbed individuals with easy access to dangerous weapons are the problem. This administration seems to be searching for any party to lay the burden of gun violence on other than guns. It’s hard to take anything at face value from people who take money from the NRA.  NBC News reports that Trump’s campaign received about 21 million dollars from the gun lobby. It’s easy enough to find lists on the web of those who receive large contributions from them. Millions of reasons why the violence boogeyman will always be anything but a gun.


3 Replies to “Video Game Violence Distracts from Real Issues”

    1. I don’t want your guns. You’re employed by a school, so I feel pretty certain you pass all background checks and are mentally stable. My beef is that every time there’s a mass shooting, the people who make and sell guns immediately start pointing fingers at games and movies. I don’t think the new laws passed in Florida are unreasonable. It should not be harder to buy Sudafed than a gun. I have to take my shoes off every time I get on an airplane because one asshole tried to put a bomb in his shoe. I think it’s okay to have a conversation about what guns are allowed in the masses and the gun industry would do just fine with a little more regulation so the rest of us don’t get shot up in schools, nightclubs, concerts and churches. It makes no sense to me that after someone gets shot we’re having meetings about video games.

      1. It’s actually NOT harder to buy Sudafed than a gun. That’s just a talking point. I get it, but I’ve purchased both in Florida.
        (also, you can’t discount non-gun violence in other countries just because they can’t get guns. They still have violence and PLENTY of deaths because of it)

        I’m not real quick to buy into the video game theory, either, but I’d come closer to blaming them than guns…
        My thoughts are that video games simply bare the brunt of the changing mores in culture that DOES turn a blind eye to violence. We’re inundating kids with violence (including gun violence) in just about every form of entertainment…and we’re SURPRISED that they mimic it? Our movies, games, COMICS, and even music is filled with gun violence (as well as other types). A gun is an inanimate object and has no ability to influence a person. You can stare at a gun all day and it won’t convince you one way or another on what to do with it. You can, however, partake in the aforementioned forms (all of them) of entertainment and be encouraged, afraid, motivated, etc., which could then cause you to do violence.
        Video games are simply the easier target than movies, and comic sell crap these days, so no one cares about them.
        I’m NOT suggesting we get rid of them. I’m a big First Amendment supporter. I am suggesting, however, it’s a price we pay for the First Amendment and for not being able–as a society–to countermand the ideas put forth in violent entertainment. But because I’m also a big Second Amendment supporter, I’m not willing to forego one amendment because the other is causing problems.
        And yes–conversations are good to have. People should have MORE of them.
        Looking FORWARD to some road trips with you, sir! 🙂

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