Stop Teaching Our Kids to Kill: A Call to Action against TV, Movie and Video Game Violence Hardcover – 31 Oct 1999
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For example (quote): "In 1982 the National Institute of Mental Health issued a pivotal report, in its review of over 2,500
studies of the effects of TV violence, it concluded, " in magnitude, television violence is as strongly
correlated with aggressive behavior as any other behavioral variable that has been measured."
The authors fail to take into account any other studies that have been given. They fail to fully elaborate on what tests where done in the study. They fail to describe fully how television violence leads to real-world aggressive behavior. They look too much at the fictional media world, without thinking about how people, especially children, would realistically react to violence.
The authors of "Stop Teaching Our Kids To Kill" set out with one set conclusion already reached, and simply cherry-picked facts to suit this conclusion. They didn't research, they just wrote. They failed to take into account ANY counter-arguments. I sincerely hope that no-one takes them seriously.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Too frequently in the wake of such crimes against society we see, in the criminal investigations following, that the suspect did play violent video games and was also withdrawn, isolated and 'strange.' Time and time again these descriptions are used to characterize the killers and yet a percentage of people still deny any connections. Of course people who own firearms are also reluctant to see links between 'guns and kids' but the access to guns vs. videos is a bit tilted towards the ease and public acceptance of violent video games either in the home or at arcades. While the detractors would demand 'proof', it seems that videos are far more accessible to kids than guns and laws exist to keep firearms locked up while children are almost encouraged to play those games and keep quiet. Young minds, investigated by so many fields of psychology and behavioral studies, have proven very malleable and young eyes and hands have been shaped by some of the most violent games to be capable and quick in their manipulations of real firearms (when they are able to obtain them). We see proofs of such in the hit ratios at nearly all such shootings. Accurate, fast and seemingly indifferent to the results. But some will say 'oh how could a stupid little game with a mouse and keyboard provide any benefits in any of those areas' and thus discount or completely dismiss the possibility and then they walk smugly away.
For those who will learn, will see and hear and absorb the correlation of 'violent games' to 'violent behavior' and 'repeated, memorized actions' to 'eerily professional ability and kill ratios', Col. David Grossman's books will be a valuable tool in hopefully curtailing their kid's exposure to such games. It should be noted that Grossman calls for such restrictions for younger kids and not adults, he's not suggesting a curtailing of 1st Amendment rights in any way but saying that young people should be protected from impacts and influences that are better coped with by adults. Of course some detractors would say that is unnecessary and even foolish as they see nothing in anything that is even potentially malevolent. Those types will always be around and trolling for responses.
For parents of children this is a must read book as are "On Killing" and "On Combat" - both helping parents to understand the portions of their children's psyche that can be wrongly influenced by their repeated activities over even short times - don't be put off by a small number of negative reviews who cry unfair or foul. Buy it, look at the current events of today and recent history, and ask yourself what has changed in the raising of kids and what is the biggest sole occupier of kid's time today versus 25 years ago... and how is that all working out for society? Great book, good information for parents and an honorable author.
Path: Grossman, an expert on military training and former Army Ranger, and Degaetano, an educator, explain statistics, backgrounds, and studies concerning the effect of media violence on children. The demonstrate that media violence contributes to increasing aggression, desensitization, and increased fear. The last third of the book is dedicated to resources and action plans for concerned people.
Sources: Much of what these two present is based on statistics following major slayings in Jonesboro, Paducah, Pearl, Stamps, Conyers, and Littleton. Through a phycological grid they evaluate and explain why they believe these acts were possible.
Agreement: The information is frightening and distressing. The reality is that we are being desensitized to the reality of violence through what we willing allow in our homes.
Disagreement: One of their foundational beliefs is that children are basically good, and the environment makes them bad (10). I would not employ many of their parenting techniques. They encourage parents to help their children "feel powerful" without falling to a pseudo-power offered through the media. Children don't "need" to feel powerful.
Personal App: This was a frightening, but valuable look at some of the evidence around media violence. It has only gotten much worse in the past 12 years since the book was published. I must be careful about what I allow into my mind. Whatever is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable. If there is any excellence, anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
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