Open Letter to the President Regarding Video Games not linked to Violence

Subject: Open Letter to the President Regarding Video Games not linked to Violence
From: Devin Ward
Date: 2 Mar 2018

Dear Mr. President,

I am writing to you on behalf of the video gaming community, myself and others included. I have seen the controversy over a comment you made remarking that videos games and movies causing violent behavior. I quote "I’m hearing more and more people say the level of violence on video games is really shaping young people’s thoughts. And you go the further step, and that’s the movies. You see these movies, and they’re so violent. And yet a kid is able to see the movie if sex isn’t involved, but killing is involved, and maybe they have to put a rating system for that."

I would like to explain to you that there is little to no evidence of connection between violence and video games or movies. A German research study from HealthDay News shows that violent video games “may not desensitize players.” In the study, German researchers hired 15, averaged around 23, young men and let them play games such as “Counter-Strike,” “Call of Duty,” and “Battlefield” for at least 2 hours a day for about 4 or so years. The volunteers were then used for functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) brain scans while they looked at disturbing images of men on fire or somebody being water boarded. They were then asked how they felt while being showed the pictures. The players appeared to be a bit anti-social but, none of them appeared to be more aggressive or violent. As you can see, this shows how video gaming is not exactly the culprit to causing violent behavior in people’s minds.

This controversy is a modern example of witch hunt and in another report by The New York Times, researchers explain how video games and violence have been a huge source of controversy over the years especially after public shooting like Columbine and Sandy Hook, to name a few examples. All of this evidence does not support the claim as Henry Jenkins, a professor at University of Southern California said that “Researchers find that people serving time for violent crimes typically consume less media before committing their crimes than the average person in the general population, he explained. But when it came to video games, he said, “the overwhelming majority of kids who play do not commit (such) acts.”

In conclusion, many people and researchers have shown and made clear that there has been little to no links between violence and video games. This witch hunt has been a major controversy over the past couple of decades and it needs to end soon because video games are not the culprit of violence, shootings, assault or any other type of aggressive behavior. There are many other issues to deal with other than video games and I hope you find it in your heart to leave video games out of the question.

Devin Ward