The Instigator
Con (against)
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The Contender
Pro (for)
7 Points

Do games teach kids violence.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/13/2013 Category: Games
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,523 times Debate No: 42320
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)




There has been a ongoing argument about if games teach kid violence if you are pro it means that you say it does teach kids violence and con that it doesn't.


My position is rather easy to prove – I need only make the case that video games teach children how to be violent, not that they actually induce violent behavior. Luckily the psychiatric community has done several experiments that speak for themselves.

Lab experiments confirm what any gamer knows in his gut: playing games like “Call of Duty,” “Killzone 3” or “Battlefield 3” stirs the blood. In one recent study, Christopher Barlett, a psychologist at Iowa State University, led a research team that had 47 undergraduates play “Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance” for 15 minutes. Afterward, the team took various measures of arousal, both physical and psychological. It also tested whether the students would behave more aggressively, by having them dole out hot sauce to a fellow student who, they were told, did not like spicy food but had to swallow the sauce.

Sure enough, compared with a group who had played a nonviolent video game, those who had been engaged in “Mortal Kombat” were more aggressive across the board. They gave their fellow students significantly bigger portions of the hot sauce. Source:

Children are highly impressionable and mimic role models.

"Video games are excellent teaching tools because they reward players for engaging in certain types of behavior," study author Dr. Bruce Bartholow, associate professor of psychology at the University of Missouri, said in a written statement. "Unfortunately, in many popular video games, the behavior is violence." Source:

Decades of social science research reveals the strong influence of televised violence on the aggressive behavior of children and youth. There appears to be evidence that exposure to violent media increases feelings of hostility, thoughts about aggression, suspicions about the motives of others, and demonstrates violence as a method to deal with potential conflict situations; and perpetrators go unpunished in 73% of all violent scenes, and therefore teach that violence is an effective means of resolving conflict.

Comprehensive analysis of violent interactive video game research suggests such exposure a.) increases aggressive behavior, b.) increases aggressive thoughts, c.) increases angry feelings, d.) decreases helpful behavior, and, e.) increases physiological arousal. Studies further suggest that videogames influence the learning processes in many ways more than in passively observing TV: a.) requiring identification of the participant with a violent character while playing video games, b.) actively participating increases learning, c.) rehearsing entire behavioral sequences rather than only a part of the sequence, facilitates learning, and d.) repetition increases learning. Source:

Debate Round No. 1


Violent juvenile crime in the United States has been declining as violent video game popularity has increased. The arrest rate for juvenile murders has fallen 71.9% between 1995 and 2008. The arrest rate for all juvenile violent crimes has declined 49.3%. In this same period, video game sales have more than quadrupled. [7] [8]

A causal link between violent video games and violent behavior has not been proven. [34] Many studies suffer from design flaws and use unreliable measures of violence and aggression such as noise blast tests. Thoughts about aggression have been confused with aggressive behavior, and there is a lack of studies that follow children over long periods of time.

A 2004 US Secret Service review of previous school-based attacks found that one-eighth of attackers exhibited an interest in violent video games, less than the rate of interest attackers showed in violent movies, books, and violence in their own writings. The report did not find a relationship between playing violent video games and school shootings. [35]

The small correlations that have been found between video games and violence may be explained by violent youth being drawn to violent video games. Violent games do not cause youth to be violent. Instead, youth that are predisposed to be violent seek out violent entertainment such as video games.

Playing violent video games reduces violence in adolescent boys by serving as a substitute for rough and tumble play. [36] Playing violent video games allows adolescent boys to express aggression and establish status in the peer group without causing physical harm.


We aren't even debating the existence of a causal link, only the fact that children learn violence from video games. I hereby provide quotes from the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry and the American Academy of Pediatrics to settle this issue once and for all.

"Some researchers have demonstrated that very young children will imitate aggressive acts on TV in their play with peers. Before age 4, children are unable to distinguish between fact and fantasy." [1]

"Extensive research evidence indicates that media violence can contribute to aggressive behavior, desensitization to violence, nightmares, and fear of being harmed.

"The evidence is now clear and convincing: media violence is 1 of the causal factors of real-life violence and aggression. At a Congressional public health summit in July 2000, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) was joined by the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, and the American Psychological Association in issuing an unprecedented joint statement on the impact of entertainment violence on children. Also in 2000, the Federal Bureau of Investigation released a report on shootings in schools that stated that media violence is a risk factor.

"In 2003, a panel of media-violence experts convened by the National Institute of Mental Health, at the request of the US Surgeon General, published its comprehensive report on the effects of media violence on youth, which revealed media violence to be a significant causal factor in aggression and violence. Most recently, in 2007, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released its report on violent television programming and its effects on children and agreed with the Surgeon General that there is “strong evidence” that exposure to media violence can increase aggressive behavior in children." [2]

"As one leading group of researchers has stated, there should no longer be any controversy that a cause-and-effect relationship exists. More than 3500 reports, including 1000 research studies, have been made; <30 studies have found no relation. In fact, the connection between media violence and real-life aggression is nearly as strong as the connection between smoking and lung cancer.

"Given the complexities of performing social-science research, this finding is quite striking. Not everyone who smokes will get lung cancer, and not everyone who views media violence will become aggressive. In addition, context is extremely important, as are mediating factors such as personality differences and parenting.

"Overall, an estimated 10% to 30% of violence in society can be attributed to the impact of media violence. Clearly, media violence is not the leading cause of violence in society, but it is a significant one." [3]

Specific sources in comments :)
Debate Round No. 2


Anoymou_s forfeited this round.


In case my opponent did not deliberately forfeit, I will rest my case for now. I hope the audience realizes I have satisfied my BoP.

Debate Round No. 3


Anoymou_s forfeited this round.


All arguments extended. Thank you & happy holidays :)
Debate Round No. 4
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by SoulReturns 3 years ago
Certainly something is to be learned from any piece of media; whether that be a movie, book, or video game, it does not matter. If one watches another pull the trigger of a gun, one learns how to fire a gun... it's a trivial concept. However, does this mean children will then grab guns and shoot people? They probably won't unless they are mentally unstable, in which case, it's not the game but the cognitive impairment causing the act.

Basically, if this is saying "do games teach things?" then I would be PRO, of course they do.
If it's trying to convey that "video games cause people to be violent" then I am tending to side with CON, they do not.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by dtaylor971 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Due to forfeit, pro wins the conduct and arguments. For sources, pro wins because he used reliable sources like newspapers and organizations. Spelling and grammar also go to pro due to a few errors in the beginning before the forfeit of con. Nothing left to say besides good job to pro!