What Are We Playing?
Have you ever played a video game for so long that once you stopped playing you could still see images of the game with your eyes closed? I’m embarrassed to say that I have.
One night, I couldn’t get to sleep, was too tired to read, and so chose to play the game, bookworm, on my laptop while sitting up in bed. The game went on for a long time. When I finally put my computer aside and closed my eyes I could actually still see the image of the game. Well, at least it was a word game.
But what happens when someone plays one of the violent video games for hours at a time like some of our kids do? What do they see when they close their eyes? Sleep experts say that we most often dream about whatever we are thinking about right before we go to sleep.
What if these same kids are watching violent movies and television shows too? Or, they go to sleep listening to the sound of the violent show you’re watching?
I know, there’s a market for the “entertainment” value of these games, movies and shows. And, a large percentage of the people who play these games and watch these movies and shows will never go out and imitate them. However, what about the small percentage of people who may imitate what they’ve seen? Is allowing these people, particularly our children and young adults, access to this kind of entertainment kind of like a playing a game of Russian roulette?
Why do these violent video games, movies and television shows exist? Do they have value? What do they teach? And, at what cost?
These are just a few thoughts that have been on my mind since December 14, 2012.