Columbine Shooting: Killer Kids

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On April 20th, 1999 two teenagers, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold walked into their school in Columbine Colorado and began a one-hour long killing spree, which ended in the death of 12 of their fellow classmates and one teacher and left another 28 wounded. The shooters then took their own lives. The two teenage gunmen did not have a previous history of violence but were both enthusiasts of killing-oriented video games. The violence in video games was a major factor in teaching these kids how to shoot other people in real life. Violent video games can and have led children to committing acts of violence against other children and adults.

Growing children are easily influenced by the examples laid out before them. A young boy who plays hockey and follows the sport closely is probably more likely to resort to violence to solve a conflict than a boy whose role model is a pacifist folk-singer simply because violence and fighting is a prominent overtone of the sport. The same goes for a child who is very interested in one or more of the numerous video games available that focus on killing as their main theme. A child who plays violent video games will resort to violence more easily when faced with a problem than a child who has never been exposed to such interactive killing. Violent video games do not teach any other way to deal with a conflict. So a young, impressionable youth will be susceptible to resorting to violence if that child has been exposed to violent video games.

Violence in video games can also act as a gateway to more serious forms of violence. If a child who has no interest or knowledge in guns and weaponry begins to play a "shoot-em-up" video game where the sole purpose is to kill other people that child could become interested in guns and move on to something more realistic such as pellet and paint ball weaponry. From there the child could move into actual guns when he/she is able to acquire such weapons and this could lead to an...
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