Do Video Games Contribute to Youth Violence

It is commonplace for people to dismiss the effect of video games particularly the violent genre as a factor in the surging youth violence. However, research (Teng, Chong, Siew & Skoric, 2011) is increasingly demonstrating the apparent contributory factor of video games on youth violence and delinquency. There is a strong relationship between video games and youth violence witnessed in the society today.

Scientific proponents of the video-violence link (Engelhardt, Bartholow & Saults, 2011) who tested the relationship between video game violence exposure and youth aggression: insults, fights, and hitting of parents strongly demonstrated the apparent causal effect of video games. The above premise do not imply that I do not acknowledge the fact that violent youth have a myriad of things going on for them; this is because studies reveal that frequency of play and affinity of violent video games strongly cultivates violent behavior (Eui, Bohil & Biocca, 2011). It is therefore notable that though violent video game may not solely fruit violence, it is a vital risk factor in this context.

I personally belief that video games are often overlooked by parents as crucial risk factors for delinquency and violent behavior (Ivory & Kaestle, 2013). This is because overly patchiness of information (Ivory & Kalyanaraman, 2009) about effects of video game exposure on youths, which makes it challenging for parents to understand the inherent effects on youth. Although video game is one of the variables that parents or guardians can control (Polman, Castro, & Aken, 2008), the informational mismatch regarding actual risks may tempt some to fell that it is not an issue worth their concern.

The American parent and the general civil society would be in favor of a federal policy that would be champion an increase in awareness about the affective nature of video games as regards children’s aggression and violent habits. I recommend the funding of massive educative programs and regulative mechanisms that would vet video content and assess inherent impacts on children’s behavior. To achieve the awareness and education goals in this context, the federal government needs to inject more funds into research on the association of video games and the incremental youth violence that has characterized the society. This measure will help in understanding the risk factors of concern for parents and policy makers to prioritize in curbing youth violence.

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