Violence in the media we take in has once again become a talking point ever since the latest mass shooting that resulted in the innocent deaths of children. The United States President Donald Trump recently spoke about the violent media that children take in at a young age, and how an overhaul of rating systems might need to be had. He also stated that “we have to do something about what [kids] are seeing.” Part of his reasoning for this reexamination of entertainment classification was video games, as he said that more people believe that “the level of violence in video games [is] shaping young people’s thoughts.” That is despite a recent study claiming that there’s no link between video games and acts of violence.
Here's the video of Trump talking about video games and movie rating systems pic.twitter.com/OlsbLVO0yI
— Gideon Resnick (@GideonResnick) February 22, 2018
“Look at the internet,” said Trump. “A lot of bad things are happening to young kids and young minds [while] their minds are being formed. We have to do something about what they’re seeing and how they’re seeing it. Also, video games, more and more people say the level of violence in video games are shaping young people’s thoughts. Go a futher step and that’s the movies. These movies are so violent, and yet a kid is allowed to see the movie if sex isn’t involved. But killing is involved and maybe we need a rating system for that. You get into a complicated big deal, but the fact is you have movies coming out that are so violent, with the killing and everything else, that maybe that’s another thing we have to discuss.”
Since 1994, the ESRB has handled video game ratings in the United States. It will certainly be interesting to see if any changes are made to how games are classified going forward, along with other forms of entertainment.