May 16, 2011

A Cry From The Heart: Violent Video Games For Kids

Why are we so complacent and naive when it comes to kids’ exposure to violent media, specifically violent video games?

Why do adults give children violent video games or titillate them with war movies and war stories but baulk at exposing them to sexual pornography or mind-altering drugs and alcohol? The assault on their childhood is exactly the same.

Pilots use flight simulators to learn to fly. Motorists use driving simulators to learn to drive. This kind of visual imagery is a very powerful learning medium. Some children are “print aversive” and thus even more receptive to visual imagery than others.
Prof. Dave Grossman of West Point Military Academy uses the same violent video games that our kids play with; to teach army recruits and policemen to overcome their natural reluctance to kill another human being.
Prof. Grossman calls violent video games; “killing simulators” because they’re such an effective medium to teach someone the will and the skill to kill” They are very effective in turning human beings into compliant automatons.
Prof. Grossman is so alarmed by the indiscriminate use of these killing simulators by kids that he has written a book, entitled: “Stop teaching our kids the will and the skill to kill”.

“So, what’s the solution?”
The solution is to arm the kids with knowledge.

We highly recommend to read:
5 Building Blocks of Active Parenting

Children learn best through play and imitation. So why do we choose violent play and violent imitation for our kids? The video industry , like the tobacco industry, is very aware of the toxicity and addictive nature of its product. Like the tobacco industry; it employs expert knowledge of our brain chemistry to optimise their sales (i.o. to enslave and secure sales) – callously disregarding the wellbeing of kids.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child covers kids from birth to 18 yrs. Adolescents have recently been highlighted as the group most vulnerable to exploitation.
Awaken the kids to their exploitation by the video industry. Lift them up to a higher sense of self. They are worth more than lucrative indicators on the video industry share price index.
They have a higher value than meat for the market –i.e. the multi-million dollar video industry market.

Why do adults dump down on kids in this manner and add insult to injury with flaccid claims such as; “It’s good for you”- “for your hand-eye-coordination, for social interaction skills, for release of your pent-up aggression, for problem –solving, et. It doesn’t take much to see that these are the media industry’s flaccid pitch. But why are these claims so eagerly embraced by parents? It is because they are a very welcome conscience balm?

Even kids are smart enough to know that these skills can be learnt through many, many other forms of play, other than through a killing simulator. For, it doesn’t take much to discover the many non-violent games available that teach them all the above –named skills. These non-violent video games are just as much fun, just as challenging and offer the same degree of escapism as the violent ones.

The present generation of kids are the first wave of scapegoats of the video industry. The first wave of stupefied goats shepherded to the market – the unconscionable billion dollar video industry market.

The next generation of kids may have the necessary safeguards in place to protect them against the assault on their childhood by the unconscionable video industry moguls – but what about this generation?

It seems that for this generation; the stronger-minded, more awakened amongst them; must take up the call on behalf of the weaker-minded kids. To vote with their choice at the video store. If you have an awakened adult, protecting you, then you are indeed fortunate.
As the man said: “All kids are our kids”. That sentiment is easy to apply in an ideal society. Yet others are feeble-minded and smile and avert their faces as their kids slip into darkness. The kids eventually becoming as callous as their manipulators – prematurely desensitised and robbed of their inherent childhood radiance by hypnotic play-imitation of soldiers engaged in violent warfare.

As Marianne Williamson states in her book “Return to Love” “We are all meant to shine, as children do”.

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.” “It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us”.
Shireen Tripp, Cronulla, NSW, Australia



  1. A great article.
    How to create a recipe for violence? Allow the widespread sale and use of killing simulators, to train a violent response to conflict or stress, then put in place every conceivable legislative setting to institutionalise the earliest possible uptake of alcohol, which is known to be a dis inhibitor - a passport to one punch homicides, over the top and senseless violence.
    Congratulations to all involved.
    Mike Cockburn
    The Pedestrian 08 Campaign.

  2. I always think about how video games negatively affect gamers. Well, I’ve never known anyone play violent video game then go commit a murder or steal from someone, most people I know are drunk or high when they do those things. :P

  3. Your closing quote is actually from Patanjali, I presume Marianne Williamson mentioned that in her book. It will take more than a provocative blog post to raise awarness in a critical mass of individuals... articals like this act more to aggravate then remedy. The disintergration of society structure is the true causitve factor in the inception of these games - a symptom only. We should be more concerned about the children who cannot afford them let alone those who play on them for hours while the adults around them are more concerned about how to fill their vacuous lives.

  4. This article is, quite frankly, extremely subjected. Hardly fair and impartial, by any means. This is a viscious attack on the video game medium, and to say that the industry is "exploiting" youngsters is Outright ridiculous! Are you AWARE that there is an age certificate system? Are you aware that it is the most monitored of all forms of media- with 87 percent of under age buyers being turned away, the highest percentage of any form of media! The only reason that a game would fall into the hands of a minor is through sheer incompetence of parents. Quoting Grossman is almost as Niave as quoting Jack Thompson, the man who has famously mis reported numerous gaming statistics for his own personal gain. I saw no mention of the FACT that mature games only account for 24% of the ENTIRE gaming market. Did you know that a staggering 44% are rated for everyone? You also failed to mention that the average age of gamers is 37, and the percentage of them under 18 is just 18% The market is dominated, at 53%, with gamers aged between 18 and 49, which more than justifies the content which IS avaiable. Cut out that sensational, ridiculous title- Violent games are NOT for kids, they are proffesionally rated and if they are deemed unsuitable, then they are rated respectfully, and no child would be capable of purchasing that title if he/she was underage, without the help of a niave, incomptent parent.