The School Newspaper of Cherry Hill High School East


The School Newspaper of Cherry Hill High School East


The School Newspaper of Cherry Hill High School East


The gamer, not the game itself, responsible for violence

When one enters the virtual world, one can feel an odd sense of freedom and uncertainty.  Video games today have grown to newer heights and the virtual world has become more intense as a result.  Often criticized for their harmful effects on their users, violent and sexual video games have become increasingly popular over the past few years.

According to, “Game environments are often based on plots of violence, aggression and gender bias.”  Many games, such as Grand Theft Auto and Halo, do fall into this category.  Unfortunately, many believe that these types of games translate into real-life problems for younger gamers.  Jack Thompson is known for his strong feelings against video games and their creators.  On the website,, it reads: “…Jack Thompson has sent literally hundreds of letters, dozens of media appearances, and even several law suits, all attempting to restrict harmful video games from reaching the hands of youth.”

Perhaps Thompson is right in that there might have been violent incidents, such as the shooting in Patucah, Kentucky, caused by video games.  Patucah victims sued certain entertainment industries for their part in the tragic event. 

Although issues do exist, video games and their content, controversial or not, will always be around.  And, like any other powerful form of entertainment, video games will receive heavy criticism from all over, but the industry will continue to flourish.

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From my experience in the virtual world of Halo, a violent video game, I feel no greater sense of aggression or anger.  I believe that this controversy can be lessened if people become more accountable for their actions.  It is simply inexcusable, in my mind, that any sort of violent act can solely be the effects of a video game.  People need to understand the possible effects of video games and act accordingly.  Jack Thompson and others can continue their fight, but in the end, it’s the gamers who control their own destiny.

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  • Z

    Zachary SchwartzJan 26, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    Actually, jack thompson was disbarred in september of…2007, I think. He can’t practice law anymore. Not in florida at least.

    I’m not sure if Halo is the best example of violent games, though. I mean, if you were to cite a realistic shooter that you play, such as GTA or something similar, this point would be further reinforced, considering that Halo primarily revolves around fantasy violence. Considering your foes are primarily alien in nature, it’s difficult to connect the violence to real life.

    This isn’t exactly a new trend though. Before Video games, everyone blamed unregulated rap music, or comic books. I totally agree with you though. Luckily, video-games are slowly becoming legitimate artistic media, so this is the kind of crap that we won’t be seeing too much in the future.