Penny dreadfuls, Fifties comic books, Grimm’s Household Tales…

From folktale collections to videogames and beyond, the notion that violent entertainment will turn kids violent seems to live on forever no matter how skimpy the evidence [Trevor Burrus, Cato]

One Comment

  • I am not sure that I agree with this. I realize that the “studies” may support the notion of violent games don’t turn people into violent people and perhaps that is true.

    If we aren’t influenced by the images we see, then why do companies advertise?

    If what we see in the “fictional” world of movies, television and games doesn’t affect people, then why does the CDC say that smoking in movies influences kids smoking?

    Why are there studies indicating that wafer thin models affect teenage girl’s self esteem leading to eating disorders?

    I am far more inclined to believe that some people are affected by certain types of images than others. I never had the urge to smoke so seeing people smoking in films, tv and ads never made me want to smoke. Yet some people are affected. I never looked at people in great shape and felt I had to stop eating. Yet some people do. (Males and females.)

    I am not saying that violent movies, games and tv shows affect all people the same way, but I am inclined to believe that some people see violent images and are more likely to act them out or see the behavior as “normal.” I don’t think that means that every mass killer had to play games, but as someone who has dealt with thousands of kids in various situations, what used to be a common reaction of “yes sir” is now more likely to be an outburst or a violent act.

    Something has changed in society. It may be parenting (or lack thereof.) It may be that we spend far too much time isolated looking down at phones and rather than talking with people. It may be that we see more depicted violence. It may be a combination of many things, but something has definitely changed.