The mass shootings in El Paso, Texa continue to tie in with technology in interesting ways. Cloudflare recently stopped offering their services to 8Chan for the role the message-board site plays in these attacks and recently the US President assigned blame to tech but in a different way.
Trump feels that violent video games are to blame for the shootings and said as much:
We must stop the glorification of violence in our society. This includes the gruesome and grisly video games that are now commonplace. It is too easy today for troubled youth to surround themselves with a culture that celebrates violence.
Back in 2018, after another mass shooting, President Trump also linked the presence of violence in games, movies and the internet in general.
These are pretty controversial statements that will get some support from those of the stance that video games are brainwashing people whilst players and companies will obviously argue against this notion.
According to a CNN article that was looking into the effects of violence in video games and media on people consuming these, there isn’t any conclusive evidence supporting that video games lead to aggression or that they actually don’t:
In the American Academy of Pediatrics July 2016 guideline on media violence, the academy warned that violent media set a poor example for kids. Overall, the academy’s summary of the results from more than 400 studies revealed a “significant” link between being exposed to violent media (in general) and aggressive behavior, aggressive thoughts and angry feelings.
Other research says there is no direct link between violent video games and predicting violent behavior.
A study conducted by Western Michigan University professor Whitney DeCamp concluded that playing video games, no matter how graphic, did not predict violent behavior. The study used data from a 2008 Delaware School Survey, which included responses from over 6,000 eighth graders.CNN Fact Check – Are violent video games connected to mass shootings?
Considering the fact that no research has conclusively proved that video games/movies are behind the problem it will be interesting to see how Trump proposes that the US government crackdown on violence in gaming and movies considering that these are both multi-billion dollar industries that will not sit back and be legislated upon if there is no concrete proof that they are part of the problem.
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