Game over: the Effects of Violent Video Games on Children Essay

1395 Words Oct 14th, 2010 6 Pages
Game Over: The effects of Violent Video Games on Children
Seven hours. That is the amount of hours a day the average American child plays a video games (Anderson 354), and with technology advancing and games becoming more graphic, the concern over a violent game’s effect over a child’s development is growing. What does playing video games for seven hours do to a child’s development? Violent, role-playing video games adversely affects a child’s development and causes aggression in children and adolescents; these games desensitize players, reward hurt and destruction, and glorify dangerous weapons. For some clarification, violent video games are defined as any game where the objective is to cruelly hurt or kill another character.
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The thrill of holding a weapon like the character in their favorite games causes children to be more likely to pick up something dangerous and use it, without being aware of the dire consequence.
Undoubtedly, many people argue that violent video games have no affect on children. Christopher J. Ferguson argues that society is simply using video games as an excuse for human nature, claiming that “In past centuries, a variety of art forms have taken the blame for society’s problems… as if such media were like the serpent in the Garden of Eden, leading us astray from our natural goodness” (58). However, video games have been shown to affect a child’s development, and the way they evaluate situations, meaning that the games can indeed lead children “astray” as Ferguson puts it. It does not mean that a large percentage of crimes are not committed by people who “…made a conscious choice- not to play a game, but to kill” (Ferguson 62), or that human nature does not play a part in it. Nevertheless, in a review done of the research of the effects of violent video games on aggressive behavior, findings showed that “Exposure is positively associated with heightened levels of aggression in young adults and children, in experimental and non-experimental designs, and in males and females” (Anderson 358). His review

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