12 March, 2013
Argue in support of or against the statement that video games have “a redeeming social value.”
Do violent video games have “a redeeming social value?” You could get many different answers to this question depending on who you ask. Is there any good that can come from video games? What harm can come to people and society from video games? Is modern culture being affected either negatively or positively by today’s video games and those that play them? Are young, impressionable, people affected by playing video games for hours and hours during their impressionable, developmental years? These are a few of the questions I will attempt to answer as I argue that video games are playing a big role in the downfall of modern society. It is now the law of the United States that video games are art. ”It is now the law of the United States that video games are a creative, intellectual, emotional form of expression and engagement, as fundamentally human as any other” (Schiesel, NY Times, 2011, p.1). “Like the protected books, plays and movies that preceded them, video games communicate ideas – and even social messages – through many familiar literary devices (such as characters, dialogue, plot, and music) and through features distinctive to the medium (such as the player’s interaction with the virtual world),” Justice Antonin Scalia wrote for the Supreme Court, in a case that arose from a California effort to ban the sale of violent video games to minors. “That suffices to confer First Amendment protection” (Schiesel, NY Times, 2011, p.2). “And now video games – as vulgar, crude, disgusting and thoroughly unredeeming as they often may be – have finally been fully recognized as a worthy element of our culture” (Schiesel, NY Times, 2011, p.1). “There is statistically significant evidence from the studies within the fields of psychology and sociology to indicate that violent video games have a negative impact on a child’s behavioral development...
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