Video Games Don’t Cause Shootings. . . But They Don’t Prevent Them Either
To the editor:
In Kevin Draper’s August 5, 2019 article “Video Games Aren’t Why Shootings Happen. Politicians Still Blame Them”, he attacks a widespread but completely slanderous theory that video games cause the all too ordinary mass shootings in America.
Gamers like me, share a love and passion for video games that to some is more than a hobby, it is an escape to a place of meditation where we can socialize with people from around the world and so much more. But to think our imperfect video game community is immune to violence is absurd.
To illustrate, it would be enticing to blame video games for The Jacksonville Landing shooting that transpired at a Madden NFL 19 Esports tournament on August 26, 2018; however, Madden is a sports game, not a shooter. Blaming the shooting spree David Katz performed on a game of computer-generated violent tackles and injuries would be ridiculous. More plausibly, David was deranged by his shortcoming to win the prize money he desperately needed to live and acted out distressingly. Numerous of other contenders endured similar disappointment that day, so it’s possible an undiagnosed mental health issue initiated Katz to forgo all logic while other opponents dismissed the defeat. This complex formula of causality aside, adversaries of video games find it exceedingly convenient to attribute such shootings to inanimate objects such as a gun or video game.
Video games can cause violence, just like hardship causes violence, and words can result in violence, just as physical and mental abuse breed violence, and infinite of other circumstances alone or in disastrous permutations. However, no sole issue is the source, and to make video games the blame is purely expediency.
To be able to perform a hideous act of violence involves mental illness or a menacing chemical combination in our brain and body that has been left untreated. In the United States alone, about half of adults (46%) will experience a mental illness during their lifetime, and 41% of that 46% will receive professional health care or services. However, with the proper education, you can support the change in the conversation around mental illness and its health care. We owe it to the patients, future generations, and loved ones around us to help find better ways to deal with mental health issues. Go get educated, support those around you who suffer from mental illnesses, get help for yourself if you need it, and raise mental health awareness.