Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

November 11, 2010 -

A discussion between two writers on the Perpetual Post website caught our eye because one of the scribes, even while expressing an aversion to violent videogames, doesn’t think the government should be in the business of limiting a child’s access to them.

In her part of the article, Molly Schoemann says that she “can’t really stomach violence of any kind—even videogame violence,” and recounted a previous experience playing Army of Two in which she was reduced to being “huddled in a pile of rubble,” where she “refused to shoot anyone.”

Schoemann also believes that violent games do have some sort of impact on youngsters, writing, “Can you really tell me that the experience of playing a videogame in which you rampage around shooting other people happens in a vacuum and has absolutely no influence over the way in which a child thinks of violent behavior and its consequences?”

But even with those two feelings in the back of her head, she is not looking for government intervention. As she wrote:

Granted, I am not sure that I am particularly in favor of laws restricting these games from being sold to minors either. For one thing, I don’t think this would really do much in the way of keeping them out of the hands of children. For another, a child who is otherwise well-rounded and grows up in a loving and supportive home is ideally receiving enough positive influences in his or her life to combat any tendencies toward violence that might be awakened through videogames or other media sources.

Ultimately, it is the children who do not grow up in loving and supportive homes whose potential for violence we need to worry about – and their access to violent videogames is among the least of our concerns in that case.


Comments

Re: Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

She comes across as a strong pacifist, but yet doesn't support unnecessary censorship on violence? Good on her.

 

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James Fletcher, member of ECA Canada

Re: Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

Sounds like she just does not like conflict in any form.  Will not take a firm stand on any point that is clearly against someone else else she might be forced to defend herself.  ie Wishy washy

Re: Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

I'd also remind Ms. Schoemann that video game violence is not violence. No one is getting hurt. It's important to make the distinction because there is enough real violence to go around. When we fight against pretend violence we are in effect wasting our effort on a non-issue. As a Quaker and a devout pacifist (who has, incidentally, brutally murdered thousands of zombies, cowboys, cops and generic Russian/Arabs in games like Left 4 Dead, Red Dead Redemption, GTA IV and CoD MW), I think it's important to keep our eyes on the ball. Hint, the 'ball' is not inside any video game. It's out here in the real world where REAL PEOPLE get hurt and killed. Ms Schoemann comes to that conclusion despite the fact that she seems to confuse violent game content with actual violence. I guess that's good, but the journey from 'video games are horribly violent' to 'let's concentrate on real violence' seems a little disjointed.

Re: Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

“Can you really tell me that the experience of playing a videogame in which you rampage around shooting other people happens in a vacuum and has absolutely no influence over the way in which a child thinks of violent behavior and its consequences?”

If Molly Schoemann means to suggest that video game violence makes my kid more accepting of violence, then I can say without a shadow of a doubt that it has absolutely no influence in that way. On the contrary, it illustrates why real life violence is bad - because in real life, real people are the ones in pain, spurting blood and dying in agony. In a game, the blood is just coloured pixels - no one gets hurt. My daughter understands this and it gives her a point of reference that she wouldn't have if she was kept protected from images of violence.

Does seeing violent content influence how my child thinks of violent behaviour, sure, but not in the way Molly Schoemann thinks it does.

Re: Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

It sounds like she's talking to a strawman there. I don't think anyone (at least from what I've seen on sites such as this one) who is opposed to the law is indifferent about kids playing violent games. Many kids are mature and settled enough for it not to affect their behaviour, and it's up to their parents to decide if they are.

What we take issue with is the suggestion that violent games are inevitably harmful to kids (they aren't), that studies prove this (they don't) and that parents and the industry can't protect kids without government intervention (they can).

Re: Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

I'm indifferent to kids playing violent games.  So, that's one.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

If it did happen in a vacuum, it likely would have some unfavorable influences.  But it doesn't exist in a vacuum.  That's why it's not dangerous.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Blogger Hates Violence, Yet is Against California Law

My cool book.  You are now in it.

 

Andrew Eisen

 
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TechnogeekMatthew: Back when that law was first implemented, I kept trying to come up with a scenario where it would be anything other than an unmitigatedd sisaster. Nothing ever came to mind.07/30/2015 - 4:16pm
Matthew Wilsonhttp://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/07/new-study-shows-spains-google-tax-has-been-a-disaster-for-publishers/ no duh Sherlock!07/30/2015 - 4:10pm
TechnogeekI can't even make a joke about that. It's like poking fun at Donald Trump's hair.07/30/2015 - 4:01pm
TechnogeekSo you willingly paid more money than you needed to in order to watch a crappy Adam Sandler movie (but I repeat myself), just to spite a reviewer that you can't even spell the name of properly.07/30/2015 - 4:01pm
Goth_SkunkMy one regret was paying extra for a DVX seat, which jostles and vibrates in relation to the action on screen. What a waste of money.07/30/2015 - 3:55pm
Goth_SkunkYes, I did watch Pixels just to spite Chipman. I was originally going to see Minions, but moved it down the list. AND I ENJOYED IT. So nuts to you, MechaCrash.07/30/2015 - 3:44pm
Matthew Wilson@phx works fine for me, but I did it the long way. I upgraded, made a recovery drive, than did a full install.07/30/2015 - 3:24pm
Andrew EisenReally liking Child of Light so far (I play on console so UPlay isn't a concern). Gorgeous aesthetic with a fun presentation and battle system. So far, so good!07/30/2015 - 1:36pm
PHX CorpWell I'm offically on Windows 10 Laptop Wise(I had to download the Windows 10 Media tool from Microsoft to get it now rather than waiting for the update through windows update)07/30/2015 - 12:16pm
ZippyDSMleeI dunno I'd go to see it, seems liek dumb fun, better than half assed serious stuff that has so many holes large enough to drive mac trucks through(coughinterstellercouch).07/30/2015 - 10:58am
Andrew EisenGoth - Wait, you went to see Pixels just to spite Chipman?07/30/2015 - 10:49am
MechaCrashYou can see Pixels, which requires you to be a moron to enjoy it, or you can actually spend that time and money watching something actually good. Gosh, what a choice.07/30/2015 - 10:49am
benohawkHot damn, I'm sold. Why see something you can enjoy on multiple levels when you can nap through half the film and still get it all?07/30/2015 - 10:17am
james_fudgeSo what people are saying is PIXELS is a great movie to see if your are comatose.07/30/2015 - 9:47am
ZippyDSMleePixels is something to shut your brain off with and just try and enjoy. The rest of films not so much. LOL07/30/2015 - 8:49am
MechaTama31Child of Light looks interesting, but not "I'm willing to put Uplay on my PC" interesting.07/30/2015 - 7:51am
MattsworknameOn the subject of movies and video games, if you haven't seen it and your a street fighter fan, run down a copy fo Street fighter assassins fist. Its the best video game movie made, and its by a small studio07/30/2015 - 5:37am
Goth_SkunkSee, i didn't enjoy the Transformers films, but I don't really know why. I watched them for the sake of watching them, but I doubt I'd ever have a craving to watch them again. With Pixels, I would.07/30/2015 - 5:12am
Sora-ChanOn topics of movies in general: I usually find the argument of "shut down your brain and enjoy the movie" argument to be annoying. It was something that I was told to do when it came to the transformer movies from Bay, and it irked me when people said it.07/30/2015 - 5:03am
Goth_SkunkI did. And I didn't care much for it, but it was the reason I went and saw the film. The entire thing can be summed up in one sentence: "I didn't like it! If you pay to watch this movie, you're a big smelly poopy-head!"07/30/2015 - 4:56am
 

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