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Opinion: ‘Grand Theft Auto V’ is not the cause of violence in society

Opinion: Grand Theft Auto V is not the cause of violence in society


With the recent release of “Grand Theft Auto V,” the argument about the effects of violent video games on young players has once again entered the media.

“Grand Theft Auto” is notorious for its violent, gang-related, murder-happy gameplay. Over the years, parents, stores and states have banned “GTA” and games like it from the shelves.

The argument is that kids who play these games are subject to violence and become desensitized to real violent acts. Thus, children will go out into the world and perform the acts they see in GTA.

As a gamer, I am living proof that the argument about video game violence translating to the real world is invalid. Video games have been a huge hobby of mine, and I have played everything from “Viva Piñata” to “Gears of War” and I have never shot, maimed, beaten or killed anyone (in real life).

But, I may be the exception. I could have learned right from wrong and realized that I’m just playing a game. Other children could be susceptible to the influence of “GTA” and it’s horrible gameplay.

However, psychologist Vaughan Bell wrote in British newspaper The Observer that, “violent video games cause a reliable short-term increase in aggression during lab-based tests.”

“However, this seems not to be something specific to computer games,” he wrote. “Television and even violence in the news have been found to have a similar impact.”

Bell said another psychologist, Christopher Ferguson at Texas A&M International University, “has examined what predicts genuine violence committed by young people.”

“It turns out that delinquent peers, depression and an abusive family environment account for actual violent incidents, while exposure to media violence seems to have only a minor and usually insignificant effect,” Bell wrote.

It is the lifestyle and moral teachings with which these children are raised are what perpetuate violence in young children and adults.

“GTA” does not turn people into criminals.

Story: MALIK RAHILI, Production and design editor

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    JackieJul 5, 2022 at 11:46 am

    I’m over fifty. I only started playing GTA few years ago. After playing a short period of time I was out driving and for a split second when stuck in traffic I felt compelled to go up on the pavement to go around traffic even though pedestrians were walking. I fought against that feeling because I’m old and lived in a different time but I truly believe this particular game creates real life crime, poor judgement and tragedy in thought and action. Recently in news car jackers kill the victim and park stolen cars untouched in their driveways like personal vehicles earned points. Car thieves never did things like that before. And the targeting of women has more than tripled and the year is not over. I’ve played other violent games of war none even closely as seductive and beguiling as GTA. I understand the makers don’t want to take responsibility because this game is a HOT seller but it’s not because this particular game isn’t causing a multitude of crimes against pedestrians women and police,, FROM ROOFTOPS AND ALLEYS AND CARS AND HIGH POWERED RIFLES, GTA IS WRITTEN ALL OVER IT. Just my opinion. Can’t get all those games back just like guns and idol teens. Money is the only bases of conscience for manufacturers and power is the only bases for political change. Guns give rich politicians, voters power they give the poor death. To those in power guns are just population control. To the makers of GTA death is just a game.

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