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Video Games- Do they Help or Hinder 2A?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by FTSESQ, Jul 3, 2010.

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  1. FTSESQ

    FTSESQ Member

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    Hi guys,
    I was thinking do video games like "Call of Duty", Grand Theft Auto, etc help or hinder our work to preserve the second amendment? On the one hand, there are many experts and psychologists the say that playing violent video games can desensitize people (especially kids) to violence; thus making them more likely to commit violent acts or reenact what they do in the games. And some games, like "Grand Theft Auto", can hardly be cited as example of responsible firearm ownership/ usage.

    On the other hand, one of the guys I work with (who was an anti 2A person a year ago) has actually started shooting in a responsible manner because of these games. In his case, his interest was piqued by the guns in the video games; so much that he went to a local range and rented some of the guns in the game to see first hand if these were the dealers of death on the news or if they were just tools that could be used for good or evil (for lack of better terms) depending on who was holding them. He has since taken a safety course, a basic pistol course, and an intermediate pistol course so that he can safely operate his firearm. He is now a gun owner (self converted), but may not have been if not for the interest generated from the game.

    So, what are your thoughts? I have always thought that you are what you are due to how you were raised, and no amount of video games or movies could make you anything else. But, this case is making me rethink my position. We now have a responsible, well trained gun owner thanks to a video game (Thank you Call of Duty).
     
  2. Nushif

    Nushif Member

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    This'll be good ...
     
  3. FTSESQ

    FTSESQ Member

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    Nushif- I'm not trying to whack the hornets nest here. I am genuinely interested it what you guys think. On one hand they can give the anti's ammo. On the other, they can introduce folks to firearms who may have otherwise had no interest in them.
     
  4. Maelstrom

    Maelstrom Member

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    I will say this, when teaching my son the basic of marksmanship I was able to use Call of Duty:Modern Warfare 2 as an aid.

    The game does accurately (pardon the pun) depict proper sight alignment. Showing him how the sights line up made it easy for him to mimic.
     
  5. FIVETWOSEVEN

    FIVETWOSEVEN Member

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    I fully realized my interest because of video games.
     
  6. Cap'n Jack Burntbeard

    Cap'n Jack Burntbeard Member

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    This is utter bull, since the dawn of civilization and probably before, games have been a form of simulated combat.:eek:
    Have some links:
    http://www.pbs.org/kcts/videogamerevolution/impact/myths.html
    http://www.crunchgear.com/2007/04/18/why-video-games-dont-cause-violence/
    http://www.physorg.com/news5758.html
    http://www.smh.com.au/news/National/Most-kids-unaffected-by-violent-games/2007/04/01/1175366055463.html

    Like anything, it depends on the mindset of the user.

    Although games tend to open the mind of the user towards firearms, it often leaves them completely ignorant of the function, types, proper terminology, and proper use of firearms.

    What we as the firearm community need to do is reach out to as many of these people as possible, try to educate as many of them as possible, offer to take them shooting.
     
  7. FTSESQ

    FTSESQ Member

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    As far as them being full of bull is not really the issue. If enough doctors (Phd's or MD's) say it is so, then there will be credibility lent to it.

    This was always my thought too, so no argument there.

    As far as function and proper use go, I agree. But the kid at work seemed to pick up a lot of terminology and names of specific guns despite not knowing them from a hole in the ground.

    Agreed! 100%! But in the case I referenced, the game was the catalyst that allowed the education to sink in, or be accepted in the first place. In this case there was someone who did not think "common folk" should have guns, to someone who now believes everyone should have one, and all the logic in the world might not have gotten through to him if he didn't play that stupid game.
     
  8. Uhrmacher

    Uhrmacher Member

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    I'm torn on this one. I was always interested in firearms as a kid despite the fact that my parents owned none and I had no first hand experience with them. Even before I was old enough to take the plunge and buy my first, I would often idly and enviously read gun articles on the internet. Video games probably played some role in sustaining my interest, but I have always thought of my passion for firearms as totally separate from them.

    I usually hesitate to bring up the subject of firearms with fellow college students because it seems that many of them see guns exclusively from the perspective of video games. It's especially frustrating to come across those who have rarely if ever handled a real firearm and certainly never considered the responsibilities that come along with keeping one for self defense, yet fancy themselves experts thanks to video games and take it upon themselves to spread all sorts of misinformation to others. If (gently) confronted with facts or the idea that guns can be more than just trivial toys they tend to assume a glazed look and not comprehend a word that is said to them.

    Sometimes I think it would be better to be able to start with a clean slate and introduce people to shooting as the great centuries old sport that it is, avoiding the possibility of them thinking of it as merely an extension of mindless video games.

    Full Disclosure: I've played lots of video games, including plenty of mindless shooters.
     
  9. FTSESQ

    FTSESQ Member

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    Sounds like the interest may be there and its just a a matter of converting that interest into a trip to the range. I don't know. When I was a kid, "Street Fighter" and "mortal Kombat" were the pinnacle of video games, so its hard for me to tell.
     
  10. benEzra

    benEzra Moderator Emeritus

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    There are a handful of authors/speakers and public figures who have really run with this claim (e.g., Jack Thompson, Dave Grossman), but the argument has been very thoroughly debunked, starting around a decade ago. The same arguments have in the past been applied to movies and TV, Dungeons & Dragons, comic books, crime novels, and edgy music, and I'm sure they will crop up again as soon as a new form of media is invented.

    Think about this fact for a minute, though: Juvenile crime is right now the lowest it has ever been since we started measuring it. If playing video games made kids violent, then we'd be seeing more juvenile violence, not less.

    I don't think those games draw many "game gun enthusiasts," either. There's a reason why interest in guns by people who have never shot real ones was originally dubbed the "Counterstrike Effect," and Call of Duty is really the heir to that mantle now.

    I have seen this too, and I think it is the most likely outcome as far as real-world effects go. A couple of generations ago, young adults watched Westerns and detective movies, and grew up and bought .30-30 Winchesters and revolvers in real life. In the case of games, I think some people do go from being in-game gun aficionados to being real-life gun aficionados, sometimes passing through Airsoft on the way there. I don't think that's a bad thing, but it does mean that we as the shooting culture have to be willing to mentor them along the way and teach them about gun safety and responsible ownership, and not make fun of them when they first show up at a gun store or the shooting range and don't know how much they don't know.
     
  11. Nushif

    Nushif Member

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    To be honest I did buy my first handgun simply because I love 1950s Detective Movies and the accompanying games. (LA Noire! Woo!)
     
  12. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    This surely doesn't belong in the Activism forum. Let's try it in the General forum and see if it lives...
     
  13. ArtP

    ArtP Member

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    Deleted message
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2010
  14. Chemist

    Chemist Member

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    Check out this link to a game that is called a training aide...muddy waters now? You decide.

    http://www.imarksman.com/

    I think it's crap. In GTA don't you get to beat-up hookers and buy drugs? Does that teach men to beat women? Does that train kids to do drugs? In a word, no.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2010
  15. MudPuppy

    MudPuppy Member

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    I know several folks that weren't exposed to firearms that took an interest after playing shooter games. We have a few more responsible firearm owners because of BF1942 (buddy bought an enfield) and COD (AKs and ARs, primarily).

    All that other horsehockey about exposing to violence or honing skills is just that. While I agree with Mael you can use it as an illustration, it'll have about as much practical uses as airsoft in creating a blackops commando.

    It's getting harder and harder for the next generation to get any exposure to firearms--a slow, steady drain on enthusiast population may be where we're headed. (you folks that are taking the time to mentor and help youngsters with parents that don't have the interest are patriots and heroes in my book)
     
  16. sv51macross

    sv51macross Member

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    In HS I was rather an anti-gun individual, idolizing Michael Moore (still do, but for Sicko. I hate BfC now I know the truth). I did see some tidbits here and there from places I don't remember. The only instance I can specifically recall was the thing about Florida moving to shall-issue and crime dropping. (I asked my dad about it and he made the typical anti statement about the place becoming like Israel; a car backfires and everyone draws down. I didn't buy it and I think that was the turning point for me.)

    Anyway, in College, one of my roommates brought his copy of GTA4. Instantly my favorite game. Upon finishing, I got it in my head that I wanted one of the assault rifles[boy was that a learning curve] from the game as a range toy, and looking into it began me down the path, you could say.

    Playing MW2 with my brother's friends, it seems of his little circle that are into that game, they're at least 2A-neutral.
     
  17. ArtP

    ArtP Member

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    +1 mudpuppy!
     
  18. M-Cameron

    M-Cameron member

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    quite frankly, i think the whole argument that " video games desensitize kids to violence" is a load of crap.....if your kid goes out and holds up a bank, runs over an old lady, and beats up a hooker....its not because he spent to much time playing GTA....its because youre a bad parent...period.

    everything now a days is about pushing responsibility off onto someone/ something else...which is how all this violent video game mumbo jumbo got started....no one is willing to admit they screwed up.
     
  19. Echo9

    Echo9 Member

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    Man, Call of Duty. I'll admit I'm a fan (not of the most recent one), but my interest in firearms came way before that.

    Seriously. COD really does get younger people into guns. At work, I watch kids aged 10-19 or so point out guns to their dads and explain what they are. And all the time, kids ask me if we have stuff from games.

    "Do you have any Desert Eagles?"
    "Do you have any MP5s?"
    "Do you have any SCARs?"
    "D you have any G18s?"

    Constantly.

    Mind you, half the time they're asking me for class three stuff. But it really does get them interested.

    Now as for this "desensitizing" thing. Complete BS. I don't care how many games you've played and how violent they were. There is no game on the planet that will actually drive someone to kill. Think of the differences between a digital pistol and a real one. Noise. Recoil. Muzzle flash. Even the smell of cordite. Video games cannot prepare you for what those things are really like in the real world.

    Think of how strikingly different guns are in video games versus real life. Now think about how different killing someone is in video games versus real life. Video games aren't even capable of desensitizing someone to the point that they are indifferent to human suffering. Video games just don't have that capacity. They can't possibly simulate (nor would it be fun if they did) the anguish that comes as a consequence of ending a human life. Not to mention the less Hollywood aspects of human death.
     
  20. ArtP

    ArtP Member

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    You know what? I used to think just like you do. I have a question for you, if I may? I have a 20 year-old son who is sharp as a tack but spends his time growing weed and working as a handi-man at a motel in the Napa Valley. My 18 year-old daughter hasn't smoked weed, or at least hasn't made a habit of it, and is moving to San Diego to go to San Diego State University on full scholarships and scored number two in her class on the SAT's.

    My son quit sports at 8th grade and my daughter continued to play through her senior year on three varsity teams. And I coached both of them all the way through.

    I'd like to know from you and the rest of those who make the sort of comments, if I treated one different than the other; and if parenting is all to blame or all to give credit to?

    It's a classic argument... Is it nature or nuture. I can tell you first hand, nature seems to have a lot to do with it - meaning no control. Given the same upbringing, one seems to succeed while the other one appears to fail.

    You shouldn't be so quick to whack the parents.

    My prediction is my son will make it and my daughter will rely on someone else. My son is smarter but my daughter is more discsiplined.
     
  21. Cap'n Jack Burntbeard

    Cap'n Jack Burntbeard Member

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    I see those types in the fun store all the time, it makes my brain melt a little every time I hear someone spout off about ".50 cals" ( they dont seem to know the difference between .50BMG, .50AE, and .50Beowulf), "assault rifles", "sniper rifles", and "hunting rifles".:banghead:

    Sometimes I try to helpfully offer some advice or explain the different operating mechanisms each firearm, while giving them subtle correction.

    But other times I just go stare at the old mausers, and wonder if they feel my pain.:uhoh:
     
  22. Big_E

    Big_E Member

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    ArtP, you seem to have a very interesting situation. I have a friend whos brother is not disciplined and completely slacked through school and now he has a brighter future right now than my friend who tried in school and was respectful to his parents.

    I think parents are at fault in some ways since their mom is far too controlling. However, the nature part has to do with their personality, since their parents raised them the same way but they took completely opposite paths.

    Now to stay on topic. Video games definitely helped reinforce my interest in firearms when I was younger. However, I have always been fascinated by them. Probably because my both sides of my family has/had a long history with them and my father's career is based around fire arms. Unfortunately, pop's didn't have a huge arsenal like I am massing, but still enough to keep my interest. They always told me to do the right things in life and to be a good person, and I have mostly done that despite having been immersed in violence since as long as I remember (yeah Power Rangers growing up, they beat up bad guys, Ninja Turtles too, key is they used FORCE.)

    So, ultimately it is the parents responsibility to show children the good path. As well as understanding their child's behavior. It is also the child's job to understand morality and follow it. But, as history and society show not everyone will do good.
     
  23. M-Cameron

    M-Cameron member

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    ArtP....certainly there are the effects of Nature vs Nurture and sure, there are more variables to how a person turns out than one can possible conceive of......but i think what it comes down to is that we are talking about slightly different situations....

    as regrettable as your son growing weed is....he is not causing anyone any harm in his actions.......where as going on a shooting spree and mimicking video games..well.....you get the point.


    if someone thinks its a good idea to reenact GTA.....they either have serious mental issues that need to be addressed, or this behavior was either knowingly or unknowingly encouraged........in either event, a parent should intervene to correct the situation....

    i think any parent would be disappointed in their kids for not achieving their full potential.....but when your kid goes on a shooting spree....i think you can agree that they would realize that they screwed up as a parent
     
  24. Hawthorne2k

    Hawthorne2k Member

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    All I know is that 3 years of playing "Centipede" in High School hasn't given me the urge to blast every multi-legged critter and every mushroom I come across, therefore I doubt GTA and Call of Duty are raising up a nation of spree killers.

    :D:D:D
     
  25. Snowdog

    Snowdog Member

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    I can't think of a single positive thing Helghan has done for our 2nd Amendment.
     
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