The Violent Video Game Debate Grows
CHARLOTTE, NC -- From gun violence to virtual violence, there's a growing debate on the link between video games and shooting sprees.
"Shooting, stealing cars, cursing, all that stuff on games is bad," said Desiree Flowers, a North Charlotte resident. The list of red flags is long for Flowers when it comes to picking video games for her son.
“I don't want them to refer back to 'well it's just a game and we have that game at home so let's do it!" said Flowers.
Parents like Flowers steer away from games exposing their children to illegal activity.
The National Rifle Association says it's for good reason, citing virtual assimilation as the reason for mass shootings.
"Callous and corrupting shadow industry that sells and stows violence against it's own people,” said Wayne LaPierre, the vice president of the National Rifle Association.
Child and family counselor Leslie Petruk says the images stick.
"It creates anxiety, nightmares, it can cause stomach aches. All things that are related to anxiety,” said Petruk, director of The Stone Center for Counseling & Leadership.
Some experts suggest that violent video games can spark aggressive behavior in gamers, but some parents say they just don't see the link.
"People who point to violent video games as the source of violence are a little narrow-minded," said Dean Edwards a resident of Concord.
Edwards does monitor what his sons play and limits their time with the controller.
"They might think they like it, but it's not good for them to be exposed to," said Petruk.
The Journal of Pediatrics looked at the link between media violence and aggressive behavior. The study found that there is no connection at this time.