The following statement, that violent video games should be prohibited, is one of the most controversial subject nowadays. Throughout the history, mankind has always been searching for different ways of entertaining. Since the development of computer technology and the internet, society has been face-to-face with many incisive problems, such as violent games, which alienated humanity from reality.
Besides the fact that, the word ‘violent’ indicates something harmful and disastrous people still follow them and the number of people playing violent games’ is gradually increasing. This essay will provide arguments for and against the “violent games should be prohibited”, in order to help the reader identify his/her opinion on the topic.
First and foremost, violent video games interrupt human personality. Those kinds of games have an ability to successfully transform psychologically well-developed people to psychically damaged ones, in other words, human nature is the victim of violent games. Those sorts of games emerges aggressiveness, increased heart rate, hostility and negative dependence on the environment where people are living. ”People who have higher levels of trait anxiety, aggressive behavior and neuroticism, are at a higher risk for video game addiction”(Mehroof, 2010).
Those people who are permanently playing violent games have aggressive responses and are troublesome. ”Researchers suggest that playing violent video games increase aggressive behavior, which leads to aggressive responses in children” (The parliamentary office of science and technology, 2012).
Furthermore, children who are addicted to video games, have a lack of sleep which gradually leads to impulsive behavior, depression, paranoia, suicidal thoughts and so on. A 2012 study held by Flinders University found that participants who played video games for 150 minutes or more at night experienced a delay in falling asleep of 39 minutes, according to their sleep journals. They also lost an average of 27 minutes in total sleep loss during the night.
Secondly, violent games impede mental development. When children and adults are spending a lot of time in playing violent games, they are not able to develop themselves, it means that they are not eager to learn new skills and attain success. “Students addicted to video games have lower academic grades than their non-addicted peers”(Chiu, 2004).
Video games limit human mental capabilities, they decrease the ability of analyzing and consequently human beings lose the capacity of decision-making. The four –year study by West and Veronique Bohbot, an associate professor of psychiatry at McGill University, looked at the impact of action video games on the hippocampus, the part of the brain that plays a critical role in spatial memory and the ability to recollect experiences. The study says 85% of gamers who play six or more hours a week have been shown to rely more heavily on this brain structure to find their way in a game. The researchers expanded on their finding: ”A problem is, the more they use the caudate nucleus, the less they use the hippocampus, and as a result the hippocampus loses cells and atrophies”. Additionally, the hippocampus is a well-understood biomarker for certain neuropsychiatric diseases, West explained.
Another important factor that should be considered is human alienation from reality. For those people, who are permanent consumers of violent games, it’s quite hard to distinguish virtual life from reality. Children and adults attribute their self-consciousness to video games and then their life belongs no longer to them but to the object, called as ‘violent games’. According to NPD, 91% of U.S children ages 2-17 play video games (64 million). More interesting, these numbers are up nearly 13% from a 2009 study. The number of kids in the U.S has increased by 1.54 percent in that time.
Young children are extremely confused in identifying fantasy violence from real world violence, moreover, they’re imitating fake characters and have the same mimics what they’re watching in games. Child Development and Early Childhood Education expert Jane Katch, MST, stated in an interview with Education Week, “I found that young children often have difficulty separation fantasy from reality when they are playing and can temporarily believe they are the character they are pretending to be”.
US Supreme Court Justice Stephen Brayer wrote in his dissent in Brown v. ESA that “the closer a child’s behavior comes, not to watching but to acting out horrific violence, greater the potential psychological harm”.
The fourth argument includes psychosocial problem. Those people who are constant users of violent games are mostly isolated from social environment. As it was mentioned, violent games cause aggressiveness and this is directly expressed in violent tendencies and the willingness to bully. At this current time, adolescents tend to have competitions among the people and they’re searching for the opponents. Society is on the one side and addicted people are on the other, in other words people have hostile situations. For instance: Critics of violent games argue that playing violent games desensitize players to real-life violence and is responsible for the increasing rates of bullying. In 2007, 32% of students aged 12-18 reported being bullied at school, compared to 5% in 1999. The teenage shooters in the 1999 Columbine High School massacre of 13 students played violent combat games. Many mass shootings have been achieved by avid video game players. James Holmes in the Aurora, Colorado movie theater shooting (2012); Jared Lee Loughner in the Arizona shooting that injured Rep. Gabby Gifford and killed six others(2011); and Anders Breivik, who killed 77 people in Norway(2011) and admitted to using the game Modern Warfare 2 for training.
The opposite party of this idea, that violent video games should be prohibited, claim that violent games support economic development. A new study from Economists Incorporated reports that violent games industry added $4.95billion to U.S. Gross Domestic Product last year-and the entertainment side of the software world is growing considerably faster than other sectors of economy. On average, industry employees receive an annual compensation of $89.781, with the industry total hitting $2.9billion.
On the contrary, proposers of this idea, that violent video games should be prohibited, argue that this is not sufficient reason to accept violent games in society. If economic advancement increases with the help of video games, healthy life is gradually ruining. They claim, that economic should not be developed by sacrificing humankinds’ health. Human well-being is the most significant thing, which should be always considered.
To conclude, what had been mentioned above, essay strongly supports the idea, that violent games should be prohibited. Those kind of games have negative health consequences. Besides the fact that intelligence level is limited, it is also declining and cause tense relationships within society. In addition, violent games have some features of incurable diseases, which emerge in humans and then it’s getting extremely hard to vanish.
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