The Ninjabot

Video Games Are Not Your Scapegoat

Posted on January 6, 2013 at 12:38 am by Stephen Janes

This article was originally posted a few weeks ago on www.stephenkjanes.com. Considering the tragedies in the last few weeks I would like to share it on Geek Legacy for those interested. Before reading this, I want to share my thoughts and prayers with anybody whose lives were altered by the dark and twisted tragedies.

Although I was out of the country the last week, I was still informed by the horrors and tragedies that took place here in the United States. To my knowledge, there were three major school shootings that took place, each more horrific than the last. For starters, my thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to those affected by these disgusting crimes. How a human being can wake up deciding that this is what they want to do is beyond me.

Let’s get one thing straight; these morons acted out on their own free (yet disgusting) will. They decided this was what they wanted to do for some reason and carried out their plans. I bring this up because it’s frustrating to hear that they were influenced by outside mediums. To keep you updated, the shooting that occurred in Connecticut was apparently influenced by violent video games because the shooter happened to be an avid fan of video games. We seem to get into this argument every year when something awful happens, and at this point it’s nothing more than a scapegoat for people who want answers. Sure, it’s easy to say that video games are violent therefore they are influential to young children, but it’s even more difficult to take responsibility and admit what really went wrong.

Referring back to the Connecticut school shooting in which Adam Lanza was apparently influenced by video games, many people overlook the fact that his mother was an avid gun-collector and apparently preparing for an economic downfall. In other words, she was hoarding weapons preparing for something big, but nothing like this. Everywhere I look there is nothing mentioned about how she spoke with her son about how to properly respect a weapon and what it can do. How is that not news? How is it not a major concern that somebody, who openly admitted to hoarding weapons and ammunition, did not properly instruct on their children proper gun control?

You can’t prepare for when somebody is going to go crazy like this. You can put walls around the campus, you can put trained officials with weapons on the school grounds and so on, but you can never predict when somebody is going to commit a crime. It escapes me that people still will quickly go straight to video games as the source of all problems without doing any research. It’s offensive because I play video games, but I have never thought about going out and committing a crime such as this, and I know that I am in the majority of gamers with this thinking. Video games are not your scapegoat anymore, so please stop using that excuse. It didn’t work with Jack Thompson and it’s not going to work with you.

I want to leave you with a chart that I actually saw thanks to Mobile Nations host and G4 writer Ashley Esqueda (@ashleyesqueda) about how violent video games are really shaping the public. Spoiler alert; it’s not as negative as you think. You can even click on the photo to read the full article written by Esther Zuckerman of The Atlantic Wire if you’re still not convinced.

Image courtesy of www.theatlanticwire.com, click the image for the full article.

Image courtesy of www.theatlanticwire.com, click the image for the full article.

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