The year is 2018 and there are roughly 1.25 school shootings in the United States per week. That is a horrifying statistic, especially because that doesn't count the countless mass shootings perpetrated outside schools. People are always looking for answers, a way to combat an issue that is plaguing this country, and once again there are those quick to give an answer that frees them of all responsibility, it must be the video games.
At its annual conference held over the weekend, the NRA brought out David Grossman, a regular NRA speaker, and Pro-Gun activist, who quickly took to blaming popular culture, specifically violent video-games, for the thousands of gun-related deaths in America each year, despite evidence to prove otherwise. "It's not about the guns" Grossman claims, "the guns have always been there. It's the sick movies and the sick TV shows and especially the sick video games around the planet that are creating sick, sick kids."
Grossman is a former U.S. Army Ranger and the author of numerous books on violent psychology. He is well known in the discussion of gun violence, having trained police officers to be more willing to use deadly force throughout their careers. It's also not the first time he has come after video games with regards to gun violence, his 1999 book Stop Teaching Our Kids To Kill is dedicated to the idea.
“Around the planet, children are committing crimes like no one’s ever seen before in human history. It’s not about the guns, the guns have always been there. It’s the sick movies and the sick TV shows and especially the sick video games around the planet that are creating sick, sick kids.”
The theory of video games causing gun-violence has seen a resurgence recently, in what has been a year of full of high profile mass shootings, particularly the shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in February that saw 17 people lose their lives. The President himself has come out making similar outlandish statements regarding violent video games, even hosting members of the video game industry at the white house to discuss the perceived connection and screening a montage of violent video game clips.
Of course, this discourse doesn't seem likely to change. As more and more people die because of senseless violence, people will continue to search for something to blame, and with video game addiction recently been identified as a mental disorder this form of entertainment will likely stay under the microscope, at least for a while.