Young men who were apparently influenced by violent videos and games have perpetrated two of the most recent, murderous acts. James Holmes and Adam Lanza, killed and wounded dozens in separate shooting sprees. Their horrifying actions may have well been fueled by brutal visual images made available to them via various media outlets.
Holmes dressed up as “The Joker” and followed a killing scenario not unlike some found in Batman movies and comics. Lanza was discovered to have thousands of dollars worth of brutally graphic video games in his basement. Their access to these forms of “entertainment” was completely unrestricted.
Meanwhile, politicking politicians around the nation and in Washington D.C. are racing to microphones calling for restrictions on the sales of firearms. They demand limiting the number of bullets in a magazine, even if they’re ignorant of what a magazine is (D Rep. Degette, Colorado), or if those limitations make police officers’ pistols illegal (D Gov. Cuomo, NY). The pols call for registration, expanding background checks, and requiring mental health professionals to, in the Empire State, report any of their patients “likely to engage in conduct that would result in serious harm to themselves or others.” In addition, the names of people prescribed certain kinds of medication are being submitted to law enforcement, raising the possibility those under treatment could lose their weapons.
While so much attention is now being given to people looking to purchase guns, why is so little attention being paid to people accessing bloodthirsty amusement? Given recent tragic history, shouldn’t these kinds of transactions be held to the same standards?
Regarding the buying or renting of violent videos and games:
Limit the number available to one person.
Require all who buy/rent to be registered.
Make background checks mandatory.
Mental health professionals must forward the names (to law enforcement) of any patients who are a possible threat to harm themselves or others….or taking specific kinds of medication.
Those who fail to meet any of the above mentioned criteria will have their videos and games confiscated, or face prosecution.
If these measures seem harsh just consider the consequences of not doing enough. Besides, it could be argued they’re just common sense proposals that really don’t infringe seriously on anyone’s First or Fourth Amendment Rights. After all, if it saves one child’s life…. the loss of a little privacy, freedom, and personal property is a small price to pay. If only we could be sure it would, indeed, save one child’s life.