Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Video Games will Make You Kill People! Really!

Another teenage gun rampage , another blaming of video games.

(Here's the one voice of reason I found from mainstream media.)

Now, I'm no Nate Silver, but a quick Google search led me to these unscientific results:

Retail copies of the last Counter-Strike edition sold: 4.2 million
Number of killings in which the perpetrator played Counter-Strike: 5

which does not seem to me like a statistically significant percentage.

I'm tired of hearing that this hobby (yes, it is a hobby, even if you do it a lot) causes people to go insane. Before they had video games to blame, it was rap music. Before that was heavy metal. Rock'n'roll was blamed for the hallucinogen craze of the 60s. People demonize things they don't do. People look for something to blame when it seems like the world's going to hell in a handbasket.

The sad fact of the matter is that some people are simply prone to going nuts. It's horrible, it's tragic, and it is unavoidable in a free society. Banning sane people from their hobby is not going to make one iota of difference.

Now excuse me, while I go rid the virtual world of some zombies.

1 comment:

booklady said...

I think that people blame video games because it's easy to do so. Video games can't argue, and statistics can be skewed to provide whatever results the people want. Plus blaming something else -- preferably something inanimate -- takes any blame away from them and whatever part they (or people like them) may have played in shaping a culture that can lead to such violence.