(ThyBlackMan.com) One could argue, just as with adults and alcohol, that video games let loose only what is dormant in the youth anyway. Others could argue video games cause a behavior instead of just unleashing it. One could even argue that only weak-minded youth act out video games. My answer? All are likely correct, depending on the child, just as with adults and addiction. Then why can some youth play violent video games yet never be effected, you may ask. I will answer that question later in this report so keep reading.
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I was disappointed but not shocked to find that the 21 billion dollar gaming industry is supported by a bunch of lying psychologists who know full well that behavioral modification from constant exposure alters and in some cases even controls behavior. And sociologists know that influencing large groups of youth is both possible and happening all the time. Gangs are one such example. Even with adults, cults are another example. And how the modern-day pimp controls his or her prostitutes is another. Know that I could go deeper into the facts and hard evidence proof of mind control, brainwashing and indoctrination, but that is another issue for another time.
Think about the issue of manipulating behavior like this. The psychographics of marketing are extremely effective in influencing what we adults buy, what we want, how much we spend and why. Such tactics to influence your decisions, actions and behavior used to be called “propaganda techniques” but the name was changed because it had too much of a Hitler-type ring to it.
As adults, many of us have a much stronger identity than youth, and we don’t think in groups nearly as much as they do. Thus it is harder to influence adults in groups. Or at least I thought that until I saw people lose their minds over a Popeye’s chicken sandwich. Nevertheless, those who are still developing their identities are more receptive and susceptible to influences from constant negative stimuli – and psychologists know it.
EVIDENCE OF THE CONNECTION:
So if as many as 97% of kids today play video games in some way, shape or form, why aren’t they all “children of the corn”? For essentially many of the same reasons that some adults end up in cults or alcoholics or addicted to porn or gambling or drugs yet others don’t. For some of the same reasons most youths will not become active shooters. Exposure time to and intensity of the violent video games varies from youth to youth. Foundations of home life value systems and spiritual foundations also provide a barrier to separate the youth from doing what he or she sees. Strength of identity and independent thought, which comes from early solid foundations in some youth, provides yet another strong barrier. Strong parents who set the right example (instead of playing the games themselves) can also make all the difference.
Inside your brain there is the reticular formation. It’s function is to factor in and out what is relevant and what is not. Every person’s reticular formation does not work on the same level. That is another key factor and yet again psychologists know this is true. So when they want to say behavior cannot be modified when youth play violent video games repeatedly, the psychologists are lying. So maybe we should ask if the game and game system manufacturers are lobbying our government,, the medical and the psychiatric industry in order to keep many of them quiet or dishonest on the issue.
LET’S GET TO THE DATA THAT EXPOSES THE TRUTH:
ProCon.org supplied the following reference to the data you are about to read. but notice the original sources are key agencies and professionals including the Journal of American Medical Association, pediatricians, psychology journals, the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, the Surgeon General’s Office and even the National Institute of Mental Health. These are the quotes of what they said.
“Playing violent video games causes more aggression, bullying, and fighting. 60% of middle school boys and 40% of middle school girls who played at least one Mature-rated (M-rated) game hit or beat up someone, compared with 39% of boys and 14% of girls who did not play M-rated games.
A 2014 peer-reviewed study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that habitual violent video game playing had a causal link with increased, long-term, aggressive behavior. Several peer-reviewed studies have shown that children who play M-rated games are more likely to bully and cyberbully their peers, get into physical fights, be hostile, argue with teachers, and show aggression towards their peers throughout the school year.
Here is broad consensus among medical associations, pediatricians, parents, and researchers that violent video games increase aggressive behavior. A 2014 study published in Psychology of Popular Media Culture found that 90% of pediatricians and 67% of parents agreed or strongly agreed that violent video games can increase aggressive behavior among children. More than 98% of pediatricians in the United States say that too much exposure to violent media heightens childhood aggression.
A joint statement by six leading national medical associations, including the American Medical Association and American Psychological Association, stated: “Well over 1,000 studies – including reports from the Surgeon General’s office, the National Institute of Mental Health, and numerous studies conducted by leading figures within our medical and public health organizations – our own members – point overwhelmingly to a causal connection between media violence and aggressive behavior in some children.”
All you have to do is compare the behavior of violent youth to the violent behavior in some of the worst video games and you can see the connection unless you are blind or just don’t want to see. And far too many of you adults are buying the games or even playing them with your children, assuming the games cannot program them because the games do not program you. I wish you were right but many of you are not, not at all.
Video games, movies and TV in this country glorify death and violence. Constant exposure to death and violence desensitizes many of our young people. In Grand Theft Auto V, for example, the worse you are the higher your score. Pick up a prostitute, blow a man’s brains out all over the street, torture a man with jumper cables, take the police on a high speed car chase then have a shootout with them. How much of this is right or positive or lawful? And if you are OK with such behavior, you as a parent are part of the problem. So while you may say “it’s just a game”, I ask you, is it? Or will you become one of the shocked parents when your child does in real life exactly what was in the game?
Many of you parents are not just playing the game – you are getting played – and paying for it. Crime, violence and death are sneaking into your home through the mind of your children and you don’t even see what is standing there in plain sight. Look at the proof based on actual cases and exposure.
“Violent video games desensitize players to real-life violence. Desensitization to violence was defined in a Journal of Experimental Social Psychology peer-reviewed study as “a reduction in emotion-related physiological reactivity to real violence.” The study found that just 20 minutes of playing a violent video game “can cause people to become less physiologically aroused by real violence” People desensitized to violence are more likely to commit a violent act. By age 18, American children will have seen 16,000 murders and 200,000 acts of violence depicted in violent video games, movies, and television.
In a 2005 peer-reviewed study, violent video game exposure was linked to reduced P300 amplitudes in the brain, which is associated with desensitization to violence and increases in aggressive behavior.“
WANT OR NEED YET MORE PROOF? Here you go, from the same source as cited earlier.
Many perpetrators of mass shootings played violent video games. The teenage shooters in the 1999 Columbine High School massacre of 13 students played violent combat games. Many mass shootings have been carried out by avid video game players: James Holmes in the Aurora, Colorado movie theater shooting (2012); Jared Lee Loughner in the Arizona shooting that injured Rep.
Gabby Giffords and killed six others (2011); and Anders Breivik, who killed 77 people in Norway (2011) and admitted to using the game Modern Warfare 2 for training. An FBI school shooter threat assessment stated that a student who makes threats of violence should be considered more credible if he or she also spends “inordinate amounts of time playing video games with violent themes.”
Some of you are still refusing to believe the truth so you need even more evidence. Not that any amount will convince you, but here it comes anyway from a child development expert in hopes that it will.
“Child Development and Early Childhood Education expert Jane Katch, MST, stated in an interview with Education Week, “I found that young children often have difficulty separating fantasy from reality when they are playing and can temporarily believe they are the character they are pretending to be.” US Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in his dissent in Brown v. ESA that “the closer a child’s behavior comes, not to watching, but to acting out horrific violence, the greater the potential psychological harm.”
We can never severely reduce crime until we honestly identify and admit to what is causing it, feeding it and promoting it. Video game violence plays a role in crime, like it or not. And those who support video game violence for young people are support violence for young people. When you say it’s OK, the youth will do it, play it and maybe even worse. Some will do it anyway but the question becomes who is raising your children? You, Mr. Xbox or Mrs. Play station?
Want to stop Domestic Violence? Do you really? You would be surprised to know how many women are unknowingly contributing to domestic violence. Take a look at evidence that connects it to video games.
“Video games that portray violence against women lead to more harmful attitudes and sexually violent actions towards women. A 2012 peer-reviewed study published in the Journal of Interpersonal Violence found that video games that sexually objectify women and feature violence against women led to a statistically significant increase in rape-supportive attitudes, which are attitudes that are hostile towards rape victims.
A 1998 peer-reviewed study found that 21% of games sampled involved violence against women, while 28% portrayed them as sex objects. Exposure to sexual violence in video games is linked to increases in violence towards women and false attitudes about rape, such as that women incite men to rape or that women secretly desire rape.
Carole Lieberman, MD, a media psychiatrist, stated, “The more video games a person plays that have violent sexual content, the more likely one is to become desensitized to violent sexual acts and commit them.” In Dec. 2014, Target Australia stopped selling Grand Theft Auto V in response to customer complaints about the game’s depiction of women, which includes the option to kill a prostitute to get your money back.”
By now many of you are still not convinced, you are going to ignore the truth and I am running out of space, time and energy in convincing you based on the facts.
The American Psychological Association (APA) lists violent video games as a risk factor for aggressive behavior. In its Aug. 2015 resolution on violent video games, the APA wrote: “WHEREAS many factors are known to be risk factors for increased aggressive behavior, aggressive cognition and aggressive affect, and reduced pro-social behavior, empathy and moral engagement, and violent video game use is one such risk factor.”
Dr. Craig Anderson, PhD, Director of the Center for the Study of Violence at Iowa State University, wrote: “Playing a violent video game isn’t going to take a healthy kid who has few other risk factors and turn him into a school shooter, but it is a risk factor that does drive the odds for aggression up significantly.”
Before I conclude this article, I have to address two more critical points. Let me reference the source I cited earlier, as they have supplied incredible research.
“Violent video games reinforce fighting as a means of dealing with conflict by rewarding the use of violent action with increased life force, more weapons, moving on to higher levels, and more.
Studies suggest that when violence is rewarded in video games, players exhibit increased aggressive behavior compared to players of video games where violence is punished. The reward structure is one distinguishing factor between violent video games and other violent media such as movies and television shows, which do not reward viewers nor allow them to actively participate in violence.”
An analysis of 81 video games rated for teens ages 13 and up found that 73 games (90%) rewarded injuring other characters, and 56 games (69%) rewarded killing. People who played a video game that rewarded violence showed higher levels of aggressive behavior and aggressive cognition as compared with people who played a version of the same game that was competitive but either did not contain violence or punished violence. “
Did you know that the military uses violent video games (often called simulators) to train soldiers to kill? And if these games can program the behavior of soldiers, what do you think such games can do to a young person who is highly impressionistic? The United States Marines used the video game Doom 2 as well as first person shooter games. Did you know that?
IS YOUR SON OR DAUGHTER BEING PROGRAMMED TO KILL?
“Dave Grossman, retired lieutenant colonel in the United States Army and former West Point psychology professor, stated: Through interactive point-and-shoot video games, modern nations are indiscriminately introducing to their children the same weapons technology that major armies and law enforcement agencies around the world use to ‘turn off’ the midbrain ‘safety catch’” that prevents most people from killing.”
So I could keep going with proof, facts and hard evidence all day long. But I won’t. Because either you get the point or you just don’t want to. One thing I do know is that we cannot stop violence by promoting it nor by accepting it. All excuses aside, get violence out of your home and out of the minds of your children. But you have to start by setting the example, not by making excuses. Because if you choose to let the gaming console raise and program your children, don’t be surprised at what happens. Not your kids? That’s what the parents of murderers, active shooters and violent criminals once said.
Staff Writer; Trevo Craw