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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Don't blame games; blame the parents

From TODAY, Voices
Monday, 23-March-2009

Letter from Li Juexun

I REFER to Trevor Tan’s Tech Comment, “Violence and video games” (March 13), debating the link between the two.

Perhaps some readers may be too young to remember this, but not too long ago, people blamed movies for violence, blamed television for violence, blamed music for violence. Heavy metal music, they said, surely was the cause of so much violent crime the world over.

The truth is this: People always try to find something to blame when something tragic happens. What they are unwilling to do is to look into a mirror.

Whatever violence has taken place would have happened even without the video games. The video game market is one of the largest of the various entertainment industries. If violent games did beget violence, we would have millions of murderers on the streets.

I am no expert on child psychology, I am no expert on video games. But what I do know is this: If my child spends 20 hours a day at his computer shooting zombies with an assault rifle, maybe it is time I started spending more time with my child and maybe doing some sports together, instead of just reprimanding him harshly and walking away without doing anything.