5 Facts About School Shootings and Video Games the NRA Needs to Look At
So, by now you've undoubtedly seen the statement from the National Rifle Association regarding the tragic school shooting in Newtown, Conn. In it, Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre suggested armed guards at the entrance of every school would ensure the safety of schoolchildren. He also managed to blame pop culture, including music videos and video games.
I can see how something like Is Tropical's "The Greeks" might appeal to a mass murderer, but let's be honest. Music videos aren't influencing anyone much anymore. It's still an amazing art form, but their reach to the general public is tiny now compared to the MTV heyday.
So let's turn to video games. They're an old scapegoat ever since Sub-Zero started ripping off heads with spines still attached in Mortal Kombat. The effect of playing such games on young minds has been the subject of much debate, and much more nonsense. Today I thought I'd share some statistics that groups like the NRA who are looking to assign blame to my favorite, non-Doctor Who hobby might want to look at.
Adam Lanza Mostly Played a Non-Violent Game
Though headlines trumpeted titles like Call of Duty when talking about his gaming, Lanza's main pastime was playing StarCraft. StarCraft is a science fiction real-time military campaign simulator, and while that sounds like some serious dogs of war stuff the reality of it is that it is basically a high tech version of Stratego.
The game isn't particularly violent. Oh sure, you kill things, but even Mario kills things. The expansion pack that Lanza was probably playing, Brood War to judge by the fact that reports of him playing it go back to around 2008, is rated T for Teen. In other words, it was deemed probably appropriate for players aged 13 and up.