President Obama has commissioned Congress to create a violent video games study written by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While many feared the Obama gun control speech would announce executive orders that bordered on being treasonous, as previously reported by The Inquisitr, the President mostly made suggestions to Congress related to gun control laws and issued three Executive Memoranda. Buried in the arguments over the second amendment and gun control laws was the idea that violent media, and specifically violent video games and movies, might factor into the national discussion over preventing further school shootings like those seen in Kentucky, St. Louis, and Newtown.
As pointed out by The Washington Times, embedded in Obama’s suggestions to Congress is the requested allocation of $10 million to study violent media, with the president highlighting video games:
“Congress should fund research into the effects that violent video games have on young minds. We don’t benefit from ignorance. We don’t benefit from not knowing the science of this epidemic of violence.”
However, the writer of the Times believes that this move should not be taken too seriously as a threat to video game companies since “President Obama’s pushback against gun violence focuses heavily on new firearms restrictions and on mental health, but video games and movies – two cultural issues that many Americans blame for violence – get little attention.”
“The results of this experiment—conducted by Ohio State University professor Brad Bushman not to measure brightness, as they had told the students, but to examine the connection between violent video games and aggressive behavior—were conclusive, the researchers said. The people who played violent video games were more likely to write more aggressive stories and dish out higher, more unpleasant noise. Violent video games, Bushman and his colleagues concluded, have a direct causal effect on aggression.”
Nonetheless, should Congress vote to allocate $10 million to the CDC for the violent video games study, the group will be able to undertake a study “investigating the relationship between video games, media images and violence.” Even so, while it may be interesting to have another study on what we already know, federal or state laws are unlikely to be influenced since the White House also believes that controlling what Americans see in movies and games is best left to parents:
“The entertainment and video game industries have a responsibility to give parents tools and choices about the movies and programs their children watch and the games their children play.”
What do you think about Obama’s Executive Memorandum for a violent video games study?