27 September 2014
Violent Video Games
Everyone knows that technology is the future. For children and teens, that means more advanced video games, specifically violent ones. In time, video games will become more realistic and detailed; violent games will have and even more gruesome storyline than ever, containing more fighting, shooting, and gore (“Violent Video Games”). The question parents should ask is, “Do these violent video games have a negative physical and mental impact on children?” The first thing to consider is the actual act of children playing the violent games. In some cases, these games could be seen as “virtual rehearsals” for actual violence (“Violent Video
Games”). Children will play these games repeatedly, but the parents don’t realize that as kids do this, they are making a negative thought pattern of violence. The basic principle of social learning theory is a theory that says children learn by observing (“Violent Video Games”). If children do something over and over, but are never taught that the actions they are performing are bad, they are going to keep doing them, thinking that it is okay. By frequently playing violent games and not having the knowledge that they are bad, children become less sensitive to the abhorrent aspects of violence (Fauber), The point is not that violent games are bad, but if they aren’t E rated, maybe parents should sit down and have a chat with the child playing violent games. Another thing to consider is the mental impact violent video games may bring to children. There is evidence that media violence results in not only immediate aggressiveness in children, but also may have a longterm effect (McCormick). Most parents don’t really consider what those longterm effects could actually be. Maybe it’s that some children could have a small attitude change or the slightest bit of depression, but what if it’s not some problem a little as that? The perpetrators in school shootings and other multiple homicides have been identified as adolescents who spent a lot of time playing violent video games (McCormick). These violent games reward the players for being hostile and solving conflicts by using aggressive behavior.
There are thing that parents can do to limit the violence and aggression taken in by children, like checking the ESRB rating, or setting time limits that the child can play (“Violent Video
Games”). If there are steps to take to eradicate violence and aggression for children, then why not do them?
Violent video games can also have a negative neurological effect on a child’s brain. One study shows that regularly playing violent games for one week led to brain changes seen in an
MRI scan (Fauber). While that is a seminew study, there have also been others performed that show a negative neurological change. Another study, which involved