Fifty years ago, video games were just a mere fantasy. They were just simple concepts that some intelligent people worked hard on and gifted to the world. Now, these games have been held responsible for school shootings, for increases in bullying, and for violence towards women. Technology around the world is continuously advancing, including video games. Over time, they have become increasingly more interactive and influential. Destructive video games facilitate violence in minors due to the fact that they are swayed by their surroundings.
Scientific evidence has established that violent video games are potentially harmful to players. The persistent exposure to these particular games allows a child to take part in the action and become desensitized to violence. Gruel points out that “this immersion results in a more powerful experience and potentially dangerous learned behavior in children and youth” (Gruel, 2). This supports that children are learning deeply violent behaviors when they play specific categories of games. In fact, a link was verified between virtual violence and succeeding hostility in children that is more influential than the association between secondhand smoke and cancer. Gruel revealed that “the intensity of interactive video games may be habituating and that two to three hour sessions of intense interactions with video games raise adrenaline levels in children and produces extended physiological arousal” (Gruel, 3). This substantiates the influence these games have on children’s lives and exactly how damaging they can be. What will it take for the children themselves to see this?
Some may argue that violent video games can relieve stress and diminish mild cases of depression. Video games may relieve temporary stress and miserable feelings, but in the long run they have a more cumulative impact on those who play them. In fact, repetitive play of violent video games may actually cause the stress and grim outlooks, making one think they are relieving stress, when they are actually causing it. Gruel states that “participating in the playing of violent video games by children increases aggressive thought, antisocial behavior, and delinquency; engenders poor school performance and desensitized the game player to violence” (Gruel, 3)/ Short-term stress relief from playing these real life games will not have any long-term benefits.
Others may argue playing these games increases your pain tolerance. Extensively, it is aggression that increases pain tolerance, not violent video games. These games are increasing adrenalized stimulation and hyper-vigilance, creating horrible effects in the bodies and brains of those who play them. Is that going to be a well-developed mind as a child growing into and adult? Gruel proves this when he says that “playing ultraviolent game can cause automatic aggressiveness, increase aggressive thoughts and behavior, and reduced activity in the frontal lobes of the brain” (Gruel, 3).
These video games simulate violence, and teach children that violence is adequate and a suitable way to resolve conflicts. There is a major form of scientific research on the connection between interacting in media violence and hostile behavior. Violent behaviors have increased rapidly in the pasty fifty years. As video games are becoming more advanced, the violent games have become more graphic and realistic. It is not necessary for the games to be completely abolished, but it is essential that we adopt stricter guidelines and age restrictions in order to change the violent behaviors that the public is witnessing.
Walters, Lawrence G. “Minors Should Not Be Required to Obtain Parental Consent for Violent Video Games.: America’s Youth. Ed. Jamuna Carroll. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2008. Opposing Viewpoints. Rpt. From “Sex, Lies and Videogames.: GameCensorship.com. 2006, Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 10 Dec. 2012.
Gruel, Steven F. “Violent Video Games Cause Aggression in Children and Should Be Regulated.” Media Violence. Ed. Noah Berlatsky. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2012. Opposing Viewpoints. Rpt. From “Brief of Amicus Curiae.” Schwarzenegger v. Video Software Dealers Association and Entertainment Software Association. 2010. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 10 Dec. 2012.