Violent Video Games: A Bad Choice for Parents and Children
A twelve year old boy named Paul sits about three feet from the fifty-two inch screen television with his eyes fixated on his character, a humanlike fox. He is able to use his game controller without looking away from the television. He sits erect and is so focused on what he is doing that he is unaware of everything that is going on around him. Occasionally he will yell out "Die! Die, sucker!" Just then his five year old brother, Skyler, stops beside him. Skyler exclaims with a smile, "What are you playing?" followed by, "Can I play?" The violence has caught his eye. Paul replies, "Sure, but I need to show you how to work the controller." He continues explaining, "This is Star Fox Adventure and see this red thing moving. That is your fox's sight box. What you see in the box is what the fox sees. You aim it at things and you push this 'A' button to make the fox shoot rockets at things and blow them up." Skyler begins to get really excited, laughing and shouting, "That's cool!"
It did not take Skyler very long to become engulfed by Paul's Nintendo GameCube system to the point of being totally unaware of all the other children running around him. This scene quickly brought to my mind a question: Are video game systems good or bad for children within these age groups? A parent should get educated on this issue before choosing to buy one of many video systems. Parents should be concerned about the effects on their children. Despite the therapists and psychologists who have said that video games can be used as positive teaching tools (Salamander 2), I see that children of all ages, races and genders become addicted to the violence and technological aspects of video games that eat away at the values that parents try so very hard to instill in their children and therefore, video games and the systems should not be bought for entertaining purposes.
Today's technology no longer allows video games to consist of simple characters of simple colors doing simple things. The technology of today's video games has gone beyond the older generation's wildest imagination. The older generation of video gamers would not have thought that the characters could stop to smell the flowers or have a conversation with a dinosaur. However, the children of today cannot imagine their video games without these virtual-reality worlds that provide them with a different experience every time they play. Children are lured into these games because of the look and feel of the lifelike characters that have movie screen qualities. These high-tech three-dimensional games allow children to experience the virtual characters as if the child were really inside the game (Moltenbery 1-2). Children who become addicted to video games do so because of the feel of being in a virtual-reality world, which allows them to be one of two kinds of viewers. The first one is a third-person...