How Video Games Affect Youth

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Electronic entertainment has captivated many for years. Electronic games were first introduced in 1958 and have been entertaining children ever since. Over time, video games have become increasingly more violent. The question stands; are violent video games affecting America’s youth in a negative way? Seventy-nine percent of children play video games, and at least sixty percent of middle school boys have played one or more mature rated game. Some psychologists suggest that video games are positive- they are creating an alternate reality for adolescents to release their anger. However, studies have consistently proven that violent video games cause more aggressive behavior and, overall, are negatively affecting America’s youth. The debate whether or not video games are positive or negative has been a major controversy in the U.S. ever since Columbine, a tragic school shooting in 1999. News spread that one of the gunmen, Dylan Klebold, spent much of his time playing violent video games. Other similar situations have occurred in history. Michael Carneal and Adam Lanza, both participants in two different school shootings, have both been said to be imitating violence they witnessed in video games. Senator Chuck Grassley, who graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a Ph.D., states, “There are too many video games that celebrate the mass killing of innocent people — games that despite attempts at industry self-regulation find their way into the hands of children.” Video games offer “rewards” to players who annihilate their opponents, giving children the mindset that violence in real life may bring the same effect. The link between video games and school shootings is prominent. The justification behind this argument lies in one particular study in 2005 which links violent video games to reduced P300 amplitudes in the brain. The P300 wave is used in the
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