By Serena Mao
It seems to be a general trend among tiger-eyed parents: no violent video games, no rap songs with cuss words, no inappropriate movies. Sheltering is a common practice among the parents of young children. These wary adults are watchful at every corner, wary for any content that they may find the least bit disturbing to sneakily swipe out of the way of their ignorant kids. Of course, these actions have some logic behind it.
When they notice the blood and killing in video games, they worry for the minds of their child. Playing a first person shooter, or FPS game, may make them more aggressive in daily interactions, possibly reaching for more physical or violent modes of resolving issues as compared to diplomacy. It seems like a logical link: roleplaying in the position of an endless killer should instill some of those characteristics in the real player. And yet, statistics don’t show a consistent correlation. In fact, youth violence around the US is at a 40 year low, despite the rise in all kinds of FPS video games.
The same thought process is often applied to other areas, like music. Listening to raps about illegal behavior, doing drugs, and adult behavior might encourage that kind of behavior. And yet, it’s can’t be said so for sure. Just because one likes the adrenaline rush of video games, or the beat of modern rap, doesn’t mean they intend to commit those same acts. Children that have matured make their own decisions based on what they know, and many realize that although shooting games might be fun, or raps about drugs might have a good beat, the activities are not appropriate to bring into daily life.
Of course, it’s not ideal to let relatively young children indulge in these games, or grow up in an environment where inappropriate actions are considered okay. It’s important for parents and mentors to instill the right characteristics into children when they are younger, ensuring that they possess the right kind of mindset as they grow up. Though some parents may like to prevent any unwanted influence by blocking out any slightly violent item out of their children’s lives, it’s impossible to police them all the way until they grow up. Kids will eventually find a way to gain a hold of the things their parents don’t necessarily want them to, and instead of trying to incessantly take these things away from them, it’s a lot more important and effective to educate them on how to deal with those items and situations.