Whenever tragic events happens that involves violence from our youth, the media automatically links the influence of the act to video games. The tragic mass shooting that occurred in Aurora, Colorado on July 20, 2012, where a gunman opened fire in a crowed movie theater at a midnight showing of The Dark Knight, the gunman told officials, “He felt like he was in a video game” The statement that the gunman made, I could see why it ignited the fuel for the media to run with and make a correlation with videos games to the event that just occurred. I understood then, but witnessing it for myself, I completely understand now.
I was in the grocery store one day, waiting to be checked out and a mother and her daughter stood in front of me in line.Her daughter looked to be at least 4 or 5 years old, very hyper and energetic as any child would be, running up and down and jumping everywhere. The mother and the cashier started a conversation on how cute the little girl was and how she was so hyper. “I don’t know where she gets this from!” said the mother. Both the mother and the cashier shared a friendly laugh. Then the little girl ran up to her mother and said she wanted play a video game when she gets home. I didn’t quite catch what video game she said, but the guy that was bagging her groceries understood, and sparked up a conversation with the mother about the game. The mother told the guy that it’s a video game her daughter and her older brother play together and the guy told the mother how he just purchased the game himself. He then went on and explained on how quite scary and violent it is. The mother then turned to her daughter and said, “Do you like scary stuff?”, the little girl nodded her head “Yes” and said, “I like guns”. The mother and the cashier looked at each and the mother laughed shyly and told her daughter, “Don’t say that”. The little girl then proceeded to form her hand into a gun and pointed at her mother and said, “Bang, bang Mommy!” and the mother grabbed her hand and said “Don’t do that!” and looked and the cashier and shyly laughed again. The little girl said again, “I like guns!” and the second time she said it louder. The only thing the cashier could do was laugh, so could I, but in shocked way. The mother and her daughter left the store and it was my turn to check out. The cashier didn’t know how to make out of it. As it was my turn to check out, the cashier and the guy that was bagging her groceries knew I was aware of what just occurred. All three of us looked dumb founded and didn’t know whether to laugh or just brush it off. All the guy could say was, “That was…. interesting”.
Just like any movie or television show, all video games have ratings. “E” stands for everyone 6 years and older, “T” is for teenagers 13 years or older, “MA” is for mature audiences 17 years or older and “A” for adults only 18 years and older. So the question is, should there be stricter polices on the purchase of video games? Or should parents take more precautions on what their children are exposed to? Some children cannot always grasp the concept of reality and what is fantasy, so as they get older, their not just games to them anymore. They want to experience and try to see what it would feel like, this would cause them to act upon such violent crimes amongst others. Therefore, in order to stop the violence, we have to stop exposing them to such.