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Old 12-29-2011, 04:20 PM
 
173 posts, read 57,394 times
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Default Children should not be criticized for playing M-rated games

Sorry for the rant. But I want to talk about the bitching and moaning about children playing M-rated games and why I think that needs to come to a halt.

Every since I started playing violent video games such as Call of Duty, I've been seeing people complain about how children shouldn't play M-rated games. There is no issues with children playing these types of games and it has been robust seeing people discriminate M-rated video games to minors.

These people are likely adults who doesn't know the difference between real life and gaming. They don't know anything about what is real and what is not. The only thing they 'think' is that children will reenact the actions done in a video game and that the game is harmful to anyone under 17.

This situation is false. There has been no kid that has been brainwashed into slaughtering a group of civilians or mauling another person to death with their bare hands. If this is true, then it is very rare.

Secondly, how is a game harmful to children? How is Call of Duty harmful to these kids? If you didn't know, there are going to be some games that are controversial, whether you agree with it or not. Plus, all of this falls under the First Amendment, which gives these games the right to be as violent and graphic as they please. But how is THAT harmful? Earlier this year, California tried to pull a ban on M-rated games given to children because they thought these games were harmful. Well, if they are harmful to children then they are most likely harmful to adults. Smoking is harmful, drugs are harmful, and alochol is harmful to ANYONE in this world. But these types of issues are because of health issues. Violence have nothing to do with health and does not kill children.

Then, we have some nipwits thinking that it is the parents fault for buying the kid's these games. These nipwits think that buying a child a game that emits free speech and rated M for mature makes them bad parents. Yet, a good parent can buy their child Modern Warfare 3 and still make sure he is healthy, getting good grades, and behaving well in school. A bad parent is someone who does not care about the child or his/her behavior. Parents who buy their kids M-rated games are good parents because THEY care about their child and they also care about their safety.

Also, if the child decides to think that it's okay to do whatever happens in a video game, it'll be their fault. Only a huge idiot would perform the actions done in a video game, movie, or TV show. It is NOT the parent's fault. In fact, ANYONE who raids an airport killing several innocent people just because you do it in a video game should be put in a mental insitution because that is completely idiotic.

Finally, let's put a grip on what the ESRB ratings are for. They are for helping parents decide what games to buy their kids, NOT for dictating what age you have to be to buy that game. Ratings are not set of rules or laws that decides what children can and can't do, they are guidelines. Plus, it's up to the parents to decide whether or not to buy their kid's that game. Besides, children at my school don't swear and fight aggressively just because it's shown in a video game, movie, or TV show. They swear and fight aggressively because they are trying to show their feelings. People swear when they want to show their feelings, not because they do it in a video game. Although fighting is never the solution to any problem, it's still showing your feelings. No, I am not saying it's okay to swear and fight, nor am I saying that swearing and fighting is ok. I am saying that people do it to show their feelings.

In conclusion: If you don't like hearing children on Xbox Live, there is a mute button you can use. As said in this thread: it is the parents responsibility to raise their own child, not the government or anyone else but the parents. If you don't like children playing M-rated games, then you are the one that are immature and should not be playing any violent video games.

Discuss.
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Old 12-29-2011, 04:49 PM
 
Location: Jacksonville, FL
3,901 posts, read 3,220,737 times
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Fairly well written post, but I disagree. I may not have disagreed before I had children, but the fact of the matter is that having children has changed a few of my opinions.

Children are influenced by their environment. If they see swearing and violence on a regular basis, they are going to think that swearing and viiolence are a normal, accepted part of life. Saying that people swear to show their feelings is a blanket statement that is incorrect. Children who think swearing is accepted will swear to show their feelings, while children that are taught that swearing is not acceptable behavior will refrain from swearing, for the most part. The same goes with violence.

If you take a 10 year old kid and expose them to extremely violent games, you're going to end up with a kid that is either in therapy or needs to be in therapy. Violent video games and children don't mix.

I would no sooner allow my kids to play violent video games than I would let them watch R-rated movies. Both have ratings for a reason, and that reason is to let parents know that the product is not suitable for the age group. While there will be the occasional case where I feel the rating is wrong, the rating at least makes me pay attention to the content so that I can make an informed decison. COD is not a case where I feel the rating is wrong. It contains extremely gratuitous violence, which is not something that under-developed minds need to be exposed to.

My kids are 11, 7, and 5. The 11 year old is getting close to the point that he will be allowed to watch more mature movies and play more mature video games, on a limited basis, and with supervision. However, he will be exposed to these things gradually, as content dictates, not turned loose in a video or game store to let him buy whatever he wants. As for the 7 and 5 year olds, they are nowhere near the point that they would be allowed to play M rated games or watch R rated movies. I don't even allow them to watch me when I play these games, due to the graphic violence and foul language.

So, judging from your argument, I'm too immature to play violent video games. However, I am mature enough to keep my children from being exposed to violence and language that I feel is inappropriate for their age group.

Btw, I'm an avid gamer, and am not opposed to the production or sale of M-rated games. For that matter, I prefer these types of games to most others. What I am opposed to is the sale and exposure of these games to children who are not mentally or emotionally equipped to deal with the content.
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Old 12-29-2011, 08:23 PM
 
173 posts, read 57,394 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimRom View Post
Fairly well written post, but I disagree. I may not have disagreed before I had children, but the fact of the matter is that having children has changed a few of my opinions.

Children are influenced by their environment. If they see swearing and violence on a regular basis, they are going to think that swearing and viiolence are a normal, accepted part of life. Saying that people swear to show their feelings is a blanket statement that is incorrect. Children who think swearing is accepted will swear to show their feelings, while children that are taught that swearing is not acceptable behavior will refrain from swearing, for the most part. The same goes with violence.

If you take a 10 year old kid and expose them to extremely violent games, you're going to end up with a kid that is either in therapy or needs to be in therapy. Violent video games and children don't mix.

I would no sooner allow my kids to play violent video games than I would let them watch R-rated movies. Both have ratings for a reason, and that reason is to let parents know that the product is not suitable for the age group. While there will be the occasional case where I feel the rating is wrong, the rating at least makes me pay attention to the content so that I can make an informed decison. COD is not a case where I feel the rating is wrong. It contains extremely gratuitous violence, which is not something that under-developed minds need to be exposed to.

My kids are 11, 7, and 5. The 11 year old is getting close to the point that he will be allowed to watch more mature movies and play more mature video games, on a limited basis, and with supervision. However, he will be exposed to these things gradually, as content dictates, not turned loose in a video or game store to let him buy whatever he wants. As for the 7 and 5 year olds, they are nowhere near the point that they would be allowed to play M rated games or watch R rated movies. I don't even allow them to watch me when I play these games, due to the graphic violence and foul language.

So, judging from your argument, I'm too immature to play violent video games. However, I am mature enough to keep my children from being exposed to violence and language that I feel is inappropriate for their age group.

Btw, I'm an avid gamer, and am not opposed to the production or sale of M-rated games. For that matter, I prefer these types of games to most others. What I am opposed to is the sale and exposure of these games to children who are not mentally or emotionally equipped to deal with the content.
Not to offend you or bash your opinion but let me tell you this...

I know a 9-year old who is playing Modern Warfare 3 on a regular basis, he doesn't think that shooting someone or using foul language is ok. Sure, video games has some influence, but it's not the cause of children copying that game.

It'll probably help if you teach your kids not to copy violent video games.

I have used foul language every since I was 12 and it doesn't come from these violent video games. Plus, seeing swearing on a daily basis might be a problem if it is happening in real life. Children can also copy off what happens in real life. If that is true, then you may need to move to a safer neighborhood.

Like I said, video games DOES have the influence because they are ones that give them the idea of doing such graphic things, but children should know better than to do that certain thing.

But other than that, I respect your opinion.
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Old 12-29-2011, 11:15 PM
 
Location: Jacksonville, FL
3,901 posts, read 3,220,737 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marcus903 View Post
Not to offend you or bash your opinion but let me tell you this...

I know a 9-year old who is playing Modern Warfare 3 on a regular basis, he doesn't think that shooting someone or using foul language is ok. Sure, video games has some influence, but it's not the cause of children copying that game.

It'll probably help if you teach your kids not to copy violent video games.

I have used foul language every since I was 12 and it doesn't come from these violent video games. Plus, seeing swearing on a daily basis might be a problem if it is happening in real life. Children can also copy off what happens in real life. If that is true, then you may need to move to a safer neighborhood.

Like I said, video games DOES have the influence because they are ones that give them the idea of doing such graphic things, but children should know better than to do that certain thing.

But other than that, I respect your opinion.
So, you admit that video games have an influence, but don't think there's a problem with exposing children to gratuitous violence in a video game? There seems to be a fault in the logic there. It is a parent's job to make sure their children grow up to be productive, active members of society. That is a parent's only real job. Part of that entails making a decision of what their child is or is not allowed to view. Since children have a hard time separating fantasy from reality, keeping them away from fantasy violence would seem to be the wisest course of action.

Quote:
but children should know better than to do that certain thing.
And that right there is the flaw. Children do NOT know better than to do that sort of thing. It is a parent's job to teach them what is or is not acceptable behavior. Allowing a 9 year old to play a game like Modern Warfare 3 is, in my opinion, a bad parenting decision. While you say that the child is perfectly fine, there are far too many studies that show that violent video games lead to aggressive behavior in children. That doesn't mean they're going to go out and shoot someone in the face, but they are far more likely to react violently to situations that don't warrant it.

We aren't going to agree on this topic, since we seem to be coming at it from 2 totally different points of view. I've made the decision to raise my children in an environment that does not promote violence, and to teach them that there are consequences for unwarranted violent behavior. And those consequences don't involve kill streak rewards.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:55 AM
 
Location: Matthews, NC
14,699 posts, read 13,551,850 times
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I don't think that kids should be playing M rated video games with gore and violence. They should be spending time outdoors like we did when I was 12 or 13...reading Hustler and Cherry in the woods.
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Old 12-30-2011, 08:56 AM
 
Location: Land of Thought and Flow
7,691 posts, read 8,935,207 times
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No, video games aren't going to turn your kids into murderous rampaging psychopaths. However, being constantly bombarded with foul language and violence will desensitize them to it. It's the same reason that video games and virtual reality systems are used in the military.

That being said, the criticism isn't directed towards the kids for playing MW3. It's towards the parents who buy them the game without knowledge and understanding of its rating and why it's rated M. Parents like you, who understand that the game is extremely violent and online ventures will involve derogatory language, aren't the problem. Parents like you who play the game with the kid are not the problem. It's the ignorant parents who buy the game, don't know what it's about, then freak out on the store for selling such an "awful game".

Last weekend at GameStop, saw a kid (circa 9) trying to convince his dad to buy him Skyrim. Instead of immediately caving in, the dad saw the rating on the game and started asking questions. Myself and a GameStop employee described what Skyrim was and why it was given its rating. The solution the dad came up with? The kid could get the game, but he wanted to watch the first 10 hours of gameplay just as a precautionary.

I had no problem with it. If the dad was going to watch the game and make sure that it was appropriate, then kudos to him for being proactive. A lot better than the parents who buy them blind.
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Old 12-30-2011, 11:45 AM
 
173 posts, read 57,394 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimRom View Post
So, you admit that video games have an influence, but don't think there's a problem with exposing children to gratuitous violence in a video game? There seems to be a fault in the logic there. It is a parent's job to make sure their children grow up to be productive, active members of society. That is a parent's only real job. Part of that entails making a decision of what their child is or is not allowed to view. Since children have a hard time separating fantasy from reality, keeping them away from fantasy violence would seem to be the wisest course of action.

And that right there is the flaw. Children do NOT know better than to do that sort of thing. It is a parent's job to teach them what is or is not acceptable behavior. Allowing a 9 year old to play a game like Modern Warfare 3 is, in my opinion, a bad parenting decision. While you say that the child is perfectly fine, there are far too many studies that show that violent video games lead to aggressive behavior in children. That doesn't mean they're going to go out and shoot someone in the face, but they are far more likely to react violently to situations that don't warrant it.

We aren't going to agree on this topic, since we seem to be coming at it from 2 totally different points of view. I've made the decision to raise my children in an environment that does not promote violence, and to teach them that there are consequences for unwarranted violent behavior. And those consequences don't involve kill streak rewards.
Good point.

I don't have kids because I am 16. But what if you talk to your child and teach them not to copy off violent video games? In my opinion, just because a parent lets their child plays M rated games doesn't make them bad parents unless they are just going to ***** about the content. If you actually teach your child that whatever you do in a video game is not real, then doesn't that reduce the chance of them becoming violent?

Also, your statement regarding the fantasy violence is false. Did you know that fantasy violence is probably being shown on Nickelodeon, which is aimed at children?

I'm sorry if I am not respecting your opinion, but don't you think it's a good idea to teach your kids before you let them play violent games?
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Old 12-30-2011, 06:47 PM
 
Location: Portland, TX. (next to Corpus Christi)
1,657 posts, read 2,149,949 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marcus903 View Post
Good point.

... I'm sorry if I am not respecting your opinion, but don't you think it's a good idea to teach your kids before you let them play violent games?
Its not so much about teaching them the right things before playing violent games, its more about DESCENTIZATION to the reality the games portray. I, too have young children (8 and 6), and will not let them play violent, T or M rated games. But, its not because I don't think they couldn't handle the content. Its more about them being descentized to the material, and not finding that kind of thing to be a BAD thing overall (more of the norm).

I WANT my kids to know that violence like that is not good, and they should be SHOCKED when things like that happen, and know what to DO if something like that should happen around them. Therefore, JimRom's point does stand.

Again, its not that I think my kids will go on a murder rampage or anything. I just don't want them to feel neutral about the terrible kinds of things some of those games portray. And, at your age, Marcus, perhaps you don't understand the things that parents go through when trying to raise their kids. Yes, it is my decision, and I talk to my kids already about the things they see on TV already (whether it be movies, news, etc). Perhaps, one day when you have children, you will feel differently about it.


Ian
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:49 PM
 
Location: Portland, TX. (next to Corpus Christi)
1,657 posts, read 2,149,949 times
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Descentization=Desentization... forgot spellcheck
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Old 12-31-2011, 07:04 AM
 
Location: Jacksonville, FL
3,901 posts, read 3,220,737 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marcus903 View Post
Good point.

I don't have kids because I am 16. But what if you talk to your child and teach them not to copy off violent video games? In my opinion, just because a parent lets their child plays M rated games doesn't make them bad parents unless they are just going to ***** about the content. If you actually teach your child that whatever you do in a video game is not real, then doesn't that reduce the chance of them becoming violent?

Also, your statement regarding the fantasy violence is false. Did you know that fantasy violence is probably being shown on Nickelodeon, which is aimed at children?

I'm sorry if I am not respecting your opinion, but don't you think it's a good idea to teach your kids before you let them play violent games?
We control what our children watch on TV, as well. Unlike a lot of people, we don't use the television as an electronic babysitter. Our kids have a certain amount of television time per day, and what they are allowed to watch are shows that are educational or that promote good values. For the 7 and 5 year old, that means they get to watch things like Strawberry Shortcake, Care Bears, Sid the Science Kid, and Martha. On occasion they get to watch movies that don't fall into that category, but those occasions are few and involve either my wife or myself watching with them.

Yes, teaching children not to copy violent video games is a good idea. However, not allowing them to be submersed in that environment is an even better one. As they get older, they will be exposed to more in the way of violence and language, but as of now we don't feel that they are mature enough to be exposed to those things on a regular basis.

Now, at the age of 16 I fully expect that my children will be watching and playing more violent media. I will still be proactive on what they are exposed to, but with maturity comes greater freedoms. I don't plan on keeping my kids sheltered, but I'm not going to throw them into the world and expect them to make the right decisions.

I don't really have a problem with a 16 year old playing COD, as long as that 16 year old is mature enough to deal with the content. Judging from your posts, and the fact that you welcome a conversation about the issue, I'd say you are mature enough. Hopefully my kids will take criticisms and arguments as well as you do at that age.
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