Well Its been a month and after a couple of problems and crisis of varying nature I have returned to the on-line world.
Things have been fairly quiet here since we last spoke, but the media has continued to annoy me to no end so I guess I'll start there. Did you know that the video game Grand theft Auto 4 was released this week rekindling the media frenzy of violence in video games spurring violence in societies adolescent population. This debate has been going on in one form or another for the last hundred years that we can verify. It began with cheap paperback novels being available to adolescents, this was causing children to engage in sex and violence brought on by the evil writers of the time. Next came the introduction of comic books during the 40's or at least the gaining popularity of said medium causing our youngsters to become more violent. Also during this time the introduction of radio serials caused similar reactions by society and the media for the same reasons. Next would be TV, followed by music, followed by Internet, followed by video games, followed by Utube and similar media formats. Am I the only one seeing a pattern here? Video games can be very graphic and disturbing to those unfamiliar with the medium, but the concept of a form of escapism that doesn't allow the person to escape their personal limits doesn't seem to be a concept that will fly either. How the game the Sims ever took off is beyond me, but somehow I'm still playing it. Regardless, It amazes me that with all these cumulative negative influences anyone is able to survive their teen years, at least that's the impression that the media is impressing upon me. I do have some startling facts that some people wouldn't at first believe. For example, did you know that for the last 15 years straight youth violence has decreased to the point where it is now at a level approx 40% lower than in 1993. Strange because that's not a fact that I would have guessed. Did you know that the coverage of violent acts on the evening news has increased from 12% of the average broadcast in 1991 to approx 60-75% that we see today? Did you know one of the indicators that a child may be capable of the terrible acts we've seen recently is that they don't play video games (such as the person who enacted the violence at U of V). When I was a child I was violent, not a bully or anything like that but give me a stick and a bunch of glass pop bottles and I would quickly show you a hundred ways to make one hell of a mess. Same goes for those other children I grew up with, we caused some trouble and inflicted some degree of destruction upon the town we grew up in. I know one of us had a Atari at this time but the acts that we were violent in were not game related, they weren't music related, they weren't even related to TV. They were the imaginings of our own childish minds, those pop Bottles could become the boogy man in one second and in the next they were hordes of Nazi's pouring out of the trenches. I think if I had the games that we do today, my town might have suffered a lot less pain and suffering than it did standing against my imagination.
Now, I may have a bit of a conspiracy bent to my very nature, but it is of growing annoyance to me how we are being spoon fed our information by the media in a format that leads to mis-interpretation of the facts. So my final thought for this post, is please don't believe me, check it for yourself and come to your own conclusions.
Saturday, May 03, 2008