Violent video games make children violent
Debate Rounds (3)
When looking at whether video games make children violent, first we must establish what people mean when they say 'violent'. The Merriam Webster Dictionary gives it as:
1: marked by extreme force or sudden intense activity
2 a : notably furious or vehement
b : extreme, intense,
3: prone to commit acts of violence
Here I am editing out some definitions that do not relate to the topic at hand. I am particularly looking at the third definition, as many have attributed video games to school shooting, saying that violent video games actually influence them enough to do something of the sort. That, in my perception, would be making someone prone to committing acts of violence. Is this possible? While studies show that people may feel more aggression while playing a violent game and shortly after, there has never been proof that there are long term psychological effects. In fact, studies show that video games can actually make you smarter. That action gamers, which I take to be games in the first-person-shoot genre(Not limited to such, just an example.) which would be a violent game.From 1995 to 2008, violent video game popularity has skyrocketed, while the number of violent crimes have lowered by almost 50%. If video games are truly a source of violence for children, then why aren't there MORE shootings? Why don't we have more armed robberies? Considering how many people play games like Call of Duty daily, you would think the number would be much higher. As The Washington Post's Max Fisher wrote:
"In fact, countries where video game consumption is highest tend to be some of the safest countries in the world, likely a product of the fact that developed or rich countries, where consumers can afford expensive games, have on average much less violent crime".
That concludes my argument, I can't wait to see yours.
While there has never been any links from violent video games to school shootings there are some patterns that cannot be ignored. Before 1975 there were 139 recorded school shootings the first of which was in 1764 (the second was in 1853). I picked this year because it was the official release of "Death Race".
Some background before I continue. "Death Race" is considered the arcade game that sparked the first controversy over video game violence. The game consisted of up to two players controlling cars with the objective being to run over "gremlins" (who resembled humans very closely) in order to earn points. The public response was outrage. NBC as well as CBS's 60 minutes reported on the violent effect it could have on teens as well as The National Enquirer and Midnight magazines. There are even reports of angry mobs dragging the arcade game out of stores and lighting them on fire.
Since 1975 there have been 199 reported school shootings. Keep in mind that both of these figures count both accidents and single suicides (i did not have the time to sort those all out). This seems to be ample proof that there has been a significant growth in school shootings. While there is no proof that connects school shootings to violent video games it cannot be ruled out.
2. Level of violence.
I completely accept your provided definition of the word itself from Webster however the context you later employ I do not. You ask why there has not been an increase in the number of armed robberies. I argue that video games do and have caused a rise in violence in the real world but not quite to that extent. I highly doubt that any grand theft auto video game has caused any significant rise in actual car thefts but that doesn't mean that these types of games hasn't contributed to increases of violence at a much lesser level. I have seen first hand the anger and frustration that is created by an extremely difficult level on some video game and have also seen that taken out in physical violence.
3. The ESRB
The ESRB was created in 1994 in order to regulate the age at which children were allowed to play certain types of games. I'm not talking about any type of pornography or language but the violence section. Why would a federally funded and controlled program worry about the AGE of which certain children can play violent games? Because they fear that the children could be affected by the violence and are not yet ready for the games.
That is the conclusion of my first rebuttal. I also can't wait to see yours.
aheberle forfeited this round.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by whiteflame 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Truncated as this debate was, it's difficult to find an inspiring argument that makes either debater's case truly stand out. Both debaters rely on correlation rather than any measure of causation in their arguments, and I don't see anything relating to what effects it has on the mind of a child or an adult. Pro tries to make such a case, but I don't see anything here that states why a child would be more likely to pursue violence, and therefore why the ESRB exists. So now I'm left with whose correlation do I think is better. Con provides a demarcation for where we should start to care about it, but provides a less powerful justification than Pro, stating that popularity of these video games increased. Perhaps if I'd gotten some statistics on violent video game popularity, I would have bought this, but I don't. Meanwhile, Pro provides a case where video game violence moved up to a significant degree with Death Race. I find that more convincing. Also, conduct due to forfeit.
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