And, Right On Time, Here Comes The Blame Video Games Train For The Navy Yard Shooter

from the blame-game dept

Perhaps it makes me a cold, heartless son of a bitch, but when I read the news reports about Aaron Alexis, who shot up the Washington Navy Yard and killed several people, I immediately wondered how long it would take before we got someone blaming video games. It simply happens every time. Whether it's simple accidental shootings, the Aurora theater shootings, or the Sandy Hook tragedy, pundits and advocating blame-shifters just love to take the gun out of the shooter's hands and place it squarely at the feet of violent media. It's the kind of culpability avoidance that has so frustrated the American public over our legal system. So, again, I wondered how long it would take.

One freaking day, that's how long. It starts with an obviously distraught friend of Alexis', who it should be noted is a restaurant owner and not a practicing psychotherapist.
The darker side to Alexis's character saw him playing violent "zombie" video games in his room, sometimes from 12.30pm until 4.30am. Mr Suthamtewakul said: "He could be in the game all day and all night. I think games might be what pushed him that way. He always had this fear people would steal his stuff so that's why he would carry his gun all the time. He would carry it when he was helping out in the restaurant which scared my customers."
From there, cable news, which is the bane of all intelligence, took the stupid ball and ran with it.
New Fox & Friends host Elisabeth Hasselbeck on Tuesday suggested that “the left” was trying to make Monday’s mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard about “gun control,” when what the country really needed was a registry to track video game purchases.

“Are more people susceptible to playing video games?” Hasselbeck wondered. “Is there a link between a certain age group or [demographic] in 20- to 34-year-old men, perhaps, that are playing these video games and their violent actions? What about frequency testing?” she added. “How often has this game been played? I’m not one to get in there and say, monitor everything, but if this, indeed, is a strong link, right, to mass killings then why aren’t we looking at frequency of purchases per person? And also, how often they’re playing and maybe they time out after a certain hour.”
Ah, the classic "I'm just asking questions" routine. Does Hasselback know she's reading from the nutso conspiracy theorist's script? Regardless, the problem is that we've seen time and time again that the evidence suggests there is no link between video games and violent behavior. Yet the response should be government monitoring of our entertainment choices? And this is from a Fox News anchor!?!?

Hey, heads up to all you folks that want to use this crime to blame guns, video games, movies, heavy metal music, football, or Pokemon: the guy had mental health issues. He was hearing voices and had already contacted the V.A. to get help. Oh, and he was apparently shuffled through the civilian contractor application process without a proper background check, because we all know the DoD doesn't have any reason to be more strict when it comes to civilian contractors these days. This was a failure on many levels, with the ultimate responsibility falling into the hands of the man who was firing the weapon into the innocents: Aaron Alexis. You know where there wasn't any culpability? Video games.


Reader Comments (rss)

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    jameshogg (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:46am

    "Guns don't kill people: video games kill people!"

     

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      Shadow Dragon (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:49am

      Re:

      Have you seen Penn and Teller about it.

       

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        CK20XX, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:45pm

        Re: Re:

        I have, but I'm not sure they're all that helpful to the cause of justice. They're not experts in most of what they debunk, and their main focus seems to be on combating loud ignoramuses by being even louder than they are, making them a bit hypocritical. Because loud extremists are never rational thinkers, I tend to finish each of their presentations with more questions than answers.

         

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        jameshogg (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:05pm

        Re: Re:

        I have seen most of Penn and Teller's Bullshit shows. Wait, sorry, shows ON bullshit. The shows they do are very much not bullshit most of the time.

        Yes they are raging libertarians, but I do not mind that.

         

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 2:50pm

      Re:

      In Mother Russia game videos kill you.

       

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    Shadow Dragon (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:48am

    Scapegoat du jour

    Remember it was comics that was blamed for everything,then rock and roll music and now video games. I guess the past generation just doesn't understand it or something.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:57am

      Re: Scapegoat du jour

      It should circle back to comics soon, there's a couple of crazy plotlines happening at both Marvel and DC and frankly they both need the sales boost. ;)

       

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      ltlw0lf (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:12pm

      Re: Scapegoat du jour

      Remember it was comics that was blamed for everything,then rock and roll music and now video games.

      No, but I remember when I was a satanist and social malcontent when I played Dungeons & Dragons all weekend with my friends.

      Those were the days. I was a lot more social and had a lot better friends back then.

       

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        another mike (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:23pm

        Re: Re: Scapegoat du jour

        I, too, am a Satan-worshiping antisocial malcontent with an unhealthy dice fetish.

        And the plural of dice is DIE!1!! Die, die, die! No, I have no idea where I was going with that.

        Anyway, these days I play first-person shooters on a Linux powered gaming PC. So not only am I a horrifically violent mass-murderer, I'm also a dangerous haxx0r since my computer doesn't run Micro$oft Windoze.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:26pm

        Re: Re: Scapegoat du jour

        Are you sure some of them didn't get left in The Bank dungeon and died?

         

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      DOlz (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:03pm

      Re: Scapegoat du jour

      Hell I remember when Morris Dancing was the cause of all of society's ills.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:12pm

      Re: Scapegoat du jour

      You forgot tabletop RPGs.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:48am

    What's so funny about this is that there is an AD for fox and friends on the right talking up the addition of Elisabeth Hasselbeck. That's hilarious to me!

     

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    mcinsand, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:52am

    if entertainment media is this strongly in control

    If we can blame video games for mass murders, then blaming teen suicides on classes that include Romeo and Juliet should be a slam dunk.

     

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      Bergman (profile), Sep 20th, 2013 @ 12:29am

      Re: if entertainment media is this strongly in control

      If violence in media creates spree killers, then I must point out that NEWS REPORTS contain descriptions of extreme violence every time there is a spree killing!

       

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    Colin, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:56am

    I think games might be what pushed him that way. He always had this fear people would steal his stuff so that's why he would carry his gun all the time.

    "It's the games! Not his admittedly irrational fear and distrust of people!"

    I’m not one to get in there and say, monitor everything, but if this, indeed, is a strong link, right, to mass killings then why aren’t we looking at frequency of purchases per person?

    You know what also has a strong link? Mass killings and guns.

     

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      Chris, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:14pm

      Response to: Colin on Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:56am

      Guns aren't the problem either. The problem is the medications these people are taking. They all have had emotional and psychological issues. I'd like to know what drugs they were on. I'd like to know what extent the drug lobby has gone to to hide the connection. They push these medications through with cash slipped into the right hands and then blame games and guns? Ridiculous.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:24pm

      Re:

      You know what also has a strong link? Mass killings and guns.


      You know what else has a strong link? Mentally ill and/or angry individuals.

      What we really need to do is lock up anyone with a family history of mental illness or any sort of anger issues. That would stop all of this.

      You know what has an even stronger link than any other thing in this world? People. I've never seen a mongoose go on a mass killing spree of people. Not once. You can look it up if you like.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Apr 13th, 2014 @ 4:42pm

      Re:

      I love it when people actually know what there saying and have common sense!

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:56am

    Think about the gamers.

    I have 120+ games through Steam and most of those are violent shooters. About once a month I'll put in a 5-7 hour marathon. I have no police record, no tickets, have a security clearance and work in IT for an International company. Been playing them and many before for over 9 years. I'll be 55 next month and have an 18 yo daughter who plays the same games. She KNOWS they are not real and had the moral upbringing to know you don't go around hurting people in real life. Perhaps blame his parents?

    This is not about the shooting itself but about how can they can rattle their sabers to get the uninformed peoples attention. These are easily swayed to the public officials mode of thinking and will hopefully, for them, get them re-elected so they can attempt to enforce their mode of thinking on the people that actually have the intelligence to take them to task or laugh at them for their lack of common sense and stupidity.

     

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      JBDragon (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 4:54pm

      Re: Think about the gamers.

      How about some people are just weak minded? Easily influence? Of course Games could have a effect, but then so would Movies, Music, hell People!!! Come on does games get people to join cults?

      Maybe people have been killing people for as long as there have been people!!! There was a Mass murder earlier this year I bet most people have no idea about. A Man when into a School in Japan and stabbed a bunch of kids and teachers to death!!! Not a single gun Involved!!!

      You can go into a Home Depot and find all kinds of things to kill people. You start looking around and think how can I kill a bunch of people, and looking around, things used for normal things become deadly weapons!!! There were zero guns for thousands of years, and yet people killed people!!! The Places with the highest gun laws have the worse crime!!! When you know people can't defend themselves, they've now become easy targets!!!

      There's a good saying, "The police are minutes away when seconds count"!!! Around here, it seems like the police are a hour away! Countries with low Gun crime, they have other much higher crime. Higher knife killings, higher Rapes, etc.

      Mexico has a very strict Gun laws!!! Most people can't own a gun, period!!! There's 1 Gun store in the whole country, where you can get a basic rifle with a hard to get permit. Yet look at the mass killings with Guns going on in that country!!! The people can't defend themselves. All the criminals have guns!!! They're bring that crap into this country. Look, there's now warning signs in the U.S. in Arizona and Texas!!! A criminal doesn't give a crap about some law!!! We have laws up the butt that aren't enforced already!!!

       

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    Zakida Paul (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:00pm

    Seriously

    How many times must this stupidity be debunked before it starts sinking in? There is no scientific evidence for what they are asserting, this is just vultures using tragedy for their own end.

     

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      The Old Man in The Sea, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 2:35pm

      Re: Seriously - be careful what you ask for

      "Scientific" evidence can be manufactured given the right circumstances and the right questions.

      What people forget is that this was a decision made by a person (for reasons unknown to us) to do harm to others and themselves.

      The talking heads are having a field day for their reasons and are forgetting that people have lost loved ones and are now having to deal with the consequences of their losses. They are, in reality, no better than the person who killed. More than likely, they are worse.

       

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        John Fenderson (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 2:39pm

        Re: Re: Seriously - be careful what you ask for

        "Scientific" evidence can be manufactured given the right circumstances and the right questions.


        No it can't. As your use of scare quotes indicates, the result of such a manufacturing effort is neither scientific nor evidence.

        I believe that ZP was referring to actual scientific evidence.

         

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          The Old Man in The Sea, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:21pm

          Re: Re: Re: Seriously - be careful what you ask for

          I disagree. My training as an engineer required that I study various science subjects (which over the years I have kept up). One warning given regularly was about not getting caught up in recording only those observations that match your view of how things are supposed to be. Funnily enough, I even had the experience of having to deal with the fallout of not getting the right results and being threatened with failing a particular experiment. It was either fudge the results or fail. Needless to say, I took the third option and didn't officially do a report on the experiment in question. I did an alternate instead.

          Numerous examples were given of scientific evidence that had been collected and was later found to be either only part of the story or wrong.

          It turned out in many cases that the evidence was manufactured to fit the theory, not have the theory fit the evidence.

          My own analysis (be it as of little consequence or importance to anyone but myself) indicates that the problem is just as prevalent today as it has ever been. Whether my opinions, views, findings and analyses are considered of any worth is solely up to those who hear and see them.

          Science in and of itself is simple procedure/discipline that anyone who wants to follow the relevant processes can do. However, it has become an elitist system where in many instances you had better follow the "political/ideological" leanings of those who are supplying the money for research or you are in the outer.

          This alone should make us all suspect the results that are presented as being based on scientific research. Money and power corrupts no matter what the field.

          Finally, the "" were used to highlight that there is no guarantees that the evidence collected was good or bad. It would still need to be retested and re-verified many times to determine its actual value.

          But getting back to the case in point, observable, testable, verifiable evidence required for claims about whether or not violent video games are harmful is not a priority from either side. The purpose of the talking heads is to distract, to sensationalise various aspects of the tragedy for their purposes and forget that there are people who are now in great need that we need to be sensitive to and for.

           

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            John Fenderson (profile), Sep 18th, 2013 @ 11:10am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Seriously - be careful what you ask for

            Literally nothing you've said contradicts my assertions, but I wanted to comment on this:

            Numerous examples were given of scientific evidence that had been collected and was later found to be either only part of the story or wrong.


            Yes, which supports the coherency of the scientific method. Science is a human endeavor, and therefore fallible. The scientific method involves independent repetition of experiments and the ability to change hypothesis when new evidence presents itself.

            The fact that research has been found faulty with additional research and experimentation is a feature. The scientific method is self-correcting.

             

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          Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2013 @ 6:21am

          Re: Re: Re: Seriously - be careful what you ask for

          Actualy, it can, boy.
          It was revealed recently that Fredric Wertham had fabricated his research that "proved" comic books caused juvenile delinquency.
          http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/20/books/flaws-found-in-fredric-werthams-comic-book-stu dies.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

           

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            John Fenderson (profile), Sep 18th, 2013 @ 11:06am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Seriously - be careful what you ask for

            Not a good example. You can't say that something was scientifically "proved" based on any single study or even multiple studies from the same research group.

             

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    crade (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:02pm

    You mean it's not cuz society is going all 1984 on us? Man was I off!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:04pm

    Only wackos believe the video game crap. Otherwise mayors would be showing off their "Let' Play" videos of Sim City.

     

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    testcore (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:04pm

    Video games are most definitely to blame...

    Which is why today all city streets flow red with blood due to the release of GTA V.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:06pm

    If video games lead to mass shootings, There would be 1000's every day. simple math. shows that.

     

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    silverscarcat (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:08pm

    So...

    How long until they use Facebook as the scapegoat?

     

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    John Fenderson (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:09pm

    Sideshow

    For those who need to seek some overly simplistic "cause" for his actions, which seems more likely? That video game "combat" turned him into a killer or that he was actually trained in real life to be a killer by the military?

     

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    Ninja (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:11pm

    It's amusing. We have bloody violent movies, and all sorts of cultural manifestations that bathe in gory plots. But somehow games are to blame just because the guy was playing a genre, zombies, that even has a freaking section devoted to it in Google Play given how stupidly popular it is. Because statistics can go to hell.

    The ones blaming games are as psychiatric challenged as the shooter. They can't tell reality from made up stuff.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:15pm

    I'm curious how many of these people who have gone on shooting sprees watch fox news. Maybe there is a bigger correlation there!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:19pm

    I would say the shooting was caused by a combination of things. In the order from most significant, to least significant.

    1. His apparent mental disorder. Such as anger management issues, easily bruised ego, and need for attention.

    2. The failing and hollowing out of the global economy through crony capitalism. I read Alexis' friend commented on how he was having financial issues. Such as not being able to repair his car when it broke down.

    3. Alexis also told his friend that the contractor he was working for, sent him to work on computers over in Japan. Alexis complained about the contractor not paying money owed to him for months while working in Japan.


    All of this is speculation of course. I would say financial hardship and money issues over back-pay is what pushed a mentally unstable Alexis over the edge and caused him to shoot up the office building of his employer.

     

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    Anonymoose, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:21pm

    So given the success of Farmville...

    Logic used dictates that we should have seen a large upswing in middle aged women taking up farming. Right?

    Or what about all of my friends that play Madden? Not one of them has taken up pro football.

    Need for speed - has it increased auto tuning? Are street races way up?

    I could go on, but it's just as reasonable to blame the DC shooting on dihydrogen monoxide. I hear the shooter was regularly taking that proven substance in for years before snapping. (eyeroll).

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:22pm

    Not just Fox this time

    You missed the one on MSNBC from last night too: http://video.msnbc.msn.com/rachel-maddow/53028297

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:24pm

    What will it take for the media and politicians to stop blaming video games for gun violence?

    Oh the heads of about a dozen politicians who spoke out against video games. Oh, sorry, I mean the recalling or ousting at the ballot box of a dozen politicians, wouldn't want them to think I was going to behead them with a video game axe!

    After that politicians and the media will fear the NVGA (National Video Game Association) so much that they'll bend over backwards to blame ANYTHING else for problems video games cause for fear of losing their jobs. Just a few examples.

    -Someone died after a 72 hour non-stop videogame marathon? It's the couch manufacturers fault!

    -Kids aren't doing their homework anymore because they play too much video games? It's the parents fault!

    -The 20+ year old who plays video games all day in their parents basement instead of getting a job? It's all the guns fault! The poor 20+ year old is too scared to leave their house to work for fear of getting shot from all those guns out there, so they spend their days safely playing video games with no danger of getting shot! Why won't anyone take the scourge of guns causing people who love video games to stay home all day seriously?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:26pm

    "He always had this fear people would steal his stuff so that's why he would carry his gun all the time. He would carry it when he was helping out in the restaurant which scared my customers."

    Obvious signs of mental issues, and he was allowed to keep his guns. Why did nobody take action?

     

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      The Old Man in The Sea, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 2:45pm

      Fear and life

      I don't know about where you live, but around here, things are always getting stolen. So having a fear that somebody would try to steal his stuff is not necessarily irrational.

      You have laws that allow people to carry firearms, so carrying a firearm is also (in your circumstances) is legal.

      So not obvious signs of metal issues.

      One needs to be careful when making statements like this to see the actual background first. What may appear to be one thing may well be another.

      Not excusing, just being a pedantic nitpicker.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 3:00pm

        Re: Fear and life

        How about when you take that in combination with the fact that the guy had already reported hearing voices?

         

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          The Old Man in The Sea, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:50pm

          Re: Re: Fear and life and hearing voices

          A number of houses I've lived in have had specific spots where the acoustics were such that you could hear muted conversations from the neighbours. We would have fun trying to make out what was being said.

          It still needs investigation to determine if there is an actual mental (not metal) health problem. It is too late now as he is dead.

          I'm not saying that he wasn't troubled. All I am saying is that there is much more to the story of his life than what we have been given or what is currently known.

           

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        Anonymous, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 5:56pm

        Pedantic nitpicker?

        Metal issues? I guess metal health really will drive you mad!

         

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          The Old Man in The Sea, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:25pm

          Re: Pedantic nitpicker?

          That one escaped the spell and comprehension checker. It needed to be nitpicked.

           

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 12:36pm

    I find it funny to blame video games rather than the overwhelming evidence of PTSD.

     

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    ShellMG (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:00pm

    Blame Games

    Most of what is marketed as journalism and reporting is lazy, sloppy, and far too opinionated. You'd think some outlets would learn from their bumbling mistakes and urgent rush to cast blame on someone they disdain or want to damage. It was on display in the aftermath of the murderous rampage yesterday, too. I'm sure Brian Ross rushed to his computer with unconfirmed names to see if they were affiliated with the Tea Party or NRA.

    He was a quiet guy? He was antisocial!
    He played video games, especially FPSs? He's sick!
    The shipyard was a gun free zone? MORE gun control!

    There's got to be a reason this guy snapped. Some news reports said he could speak Thai...a very cool skill, imho, that may have opened employment doors for him. We need to find it because he sounds like an every-day Joe Neighbor who has a few oddities, but nothing outwardly outrageous. Nobody wants to go through life constantly seconding the guy next door who waits at the box for the mailman.

     

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      That One Guy (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 3:00pm

      Re: Blame Games

      Nobody wants to go through life constantly seconding the guy next door who waits at the box for the mailman.

      So don't. There are countless things that have higher odds of getting you killed than a random person deciding to go on a shooting spree, and along with common sense preventative measures to lessen the risks, the best way to handle them is to not worry about it and just go about life as normal.

       

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      John Fenderson (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 3:46pm

      Re: Blame Games

      he sounds like an every-day Joe Neighbor who has a few oddities, but nothing outwardly outrageous.


      Actually, there were a couple of outwardly outrageous incidents involving inappropriate uses of firearms resulting from uncontrolled rage, such as shooting out the tires of a neighbor's car.

      In fact, his obvious mental instability is why he was kicked out of the military.

       

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    Transmitte (profile), Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:06pm

    Wait, we're worried about what FAUX news is saying? More to the point, we're worried about what all cable news channels are saying? These networks that have to fill 24hr news cycles with mind numbingly dressed up worthless shit for the masses to graze on?

    Let them cry and wallow and finger point until they're foaming at the mouth and showing exactly who they are, uninformed, ratings grabbing, scare mongering worthless souls whose idea of informing you is akin to thinking that eating at McD's three times a day is a way to eat healthy.

    The guy was not mentally stable and was ignored, passed around through health providers and avoided by people close to him who quite literally thought he was unstable. Throw in some firearms and you got a Perfect storm for a killing spree dontcha' think?

    And creating data bases and monitoring people who play video games, isn't the NSA currently having issues of a sort with data bases and monitoring? Yes tee-vee news anchor, you have a brilliant plan there...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:12pm

    wow techdirt really opens my eyes and makes me better.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 1:49pm

    It's ALL slick willy's fault...REALLY

    Our armed forces, trusted with the security of our country and its contents thanks to slick willy can’t carry a gun on government property.
    They operate ships and aircraft and other implements of destruction in our defense but we can’t be trust you to carry a gun? REALLY

    He really should be called sick willy.

     

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    mike dee, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 2:02pm

    a reply to the violent video game argument

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 2:33pm

    I can't wait to get my hands on GTA V...I mean, um, video games are bad!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 4:41pm

    Dept of Games (DOGs)

    “How often has this game been played? I’m not one to get in there and say, monitor everything, but if this, indeed, is a strong link, right, to mass killings then why aren’t we looking at frequency of purchases per person? And also, how often they’re playing and maybe they time out after a certain hour.”

    Isn't the localPD,NSA,DEA,FBI,Homeland Security,DOJ,DOD, etc already monitoring everything?

    Perhaps she's suggesting cranial implants!

     

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    Anonymous, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 4:56pm

    TOO BAD, SPACE CADET! HA-HA-HA!

     

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    Anonymous, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 4:56pm

    Chicken! Fight like a robot!

     

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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
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    out_of_the_blue, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 7:29pm

    Feeding frenzy died down, now a dose of sanity.

    Teh gamers, how they protest. Any item with a video game they go into a frenzy of senseless yapping, which is evidence in itself.

    And silly Timmy asserts there's no evidence of a link between violent video games and actual random violence while writing an item which gives good evidence of that.

    Certainly evidence of link between video games and inability to view oneself objectively!

    Now look at this:

    "Grand Theft Auto fan is STABBED, HIT WITH A BRICK AND ROBBED in London after waiting all night in line to buy game."

    http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=29c_1379417286

    Evidence here of two people: the first manifestly obsessed to wait in line all night to buy the game, then the second simply exercises the game's backwards "morality", commits assault to steal it. And I bet the first is more upset about loss of the game than of being hit with a brick.

    Now my distinctive tagline, so the rapidly aging fanboys can call me crazy:

    Techdirt: a sore for site eyes.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 10:05pm

      Re: Feeding frenzy died down, now a dose of sanity.

      You're right; let's apply this logic to other things.

      Person buys DVD for a $100 million movie. Other person mugs him and steals it. $100 million movies are evil. They're banned.

      Congratulations on undermining yourself yet again.

      out_of_the_blue just hates it when due process is enforced.

       

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      S. T. Stone, Sep 18th, 2013 @ 2:09am

      Re: Feeding frenzy died down, now a dose of sanity.

      Any item with a video game they go into a frenzy of senseless yapping, which is evidence in itself.

      Yes, the reaction from videogame enthusiasts (fuck the quasi-derogatory term ‘gamer’, by the by) says a lot about how the way they feel whenever these stories come up: they have to defend videogames from a world ready to condemn them as either ‘kid’s toys’ or ‘murder simulators’. When it comes to the mainstream media (and I dislike that term too, but what can I do), they can’t ever call videogames ‘art’ or ‘interactive narratives’ or anything else that might imply a positive view of videogames. The stereotyping of both videogames and videogame enthusiasts makes it impossible for stories such as these to go by without those enthusiasts (and the people who make videogames) defending their chosen form of entertainment.

      Timmy asserts there's no evidence of a link between violent video games and actual random violence while writing an item which gives good evidence of that

      We’ve seen correlations, but without a proven causal link, no proof exists that backs up the assertion of ‘videogames cause violence’.

      The vast majority of videogame enthusiasts don’t commit violent crimes. I’ve played videogames of all kinds since the mid-to-late 1980s (I HAVE MY SCARS FROM THE GREAT CONSOLE WARS DAMMIT), and I’ve never committed any real acts of violence. I beat up a few kids in my school days and I have anger issues, sure, but all that has more to do with my personal development than with my decision to play videogames.

      Grand Theft Auto fan is STABBED, HIT WITH A BRICK AND ROBBED in London after waiting all night in line to buy game.

      ‘GTA Fan Robbed After Newest Game Launches’ works as a far more seductive headline than ‘Gamer Assaulted And Robbed After a Midnight Release Party for New GTA’ and automatically implants the idea of ‘oh well this never would’ve happened if Rockstar hadn’t released GTA the bastards’ into a reader’s head.

      What do you think the headline would say if that person had bought a different high-in-demand game that lacked the reputation (and the violent content) of the Grand Theft Auto series before his assault?

      You want to draw a causal link between GTA and violence because you, much the same as Elisabeth Hasselbeck, see videogames as some sort of ‘threat’ to the stability of society or as a dangerous form of entertainment. You, Hasslebeck, and a host of other imbeciles seem to want videogames to come under the control of the government and videogame enthusiasts all painted with the same brush of ‘potential serial killer in the making’.

      As much as I loathe doing the slippery slope argument, it damn well applies here: if the government starts tracking who buys violent videogames, what form of entertainment would come under fire next? How about we track people who buy Fifty Shades of Grey and treat them as possible sex offenders? What about treating fans of the Saw films as serial killers in the making — how does that sound? And hey, while we have the chance, we can peg anyone who’s ever so much as looked at a copy of Lolita as a pedophile!

      Videogames offer an interactive experience that no other form of ‘passive’ entertainment (books, music, movies, TV shows, etc). That doesn’t mean everyone who plays a videogame wants to turn that experience into a reality. If that assertion held true, EVO 2K13 would’ve had a whole bunch of fistfights breaking out inbetween Super Street Fighter IV matches.

      Videogames also have the protection of the First Amendment backing them now. You can’t hope to ‘track’ videogame enthusiasts who buy one type of game or one specific game series without the ACLU and other groups bringing up the First Amendment in their defense.

      Until and unless someone proves a direct causal link between videogames (of any kind) and violent acts, I’ll thank you, Ms. Hasslebeck, any other imbecile who spouts this nonsense, and the federal government to keep your damn hands off my PlayStation.

      Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I need a session of X-Men vs. Street Figther to calm me down.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2013 @ 4:28am

      Correlation is not the same as causality. I know it, you know it, anyone with a few working braincells knows it.

      You're either stupid or dishonest. Probably you're both, but in this case you're more dishonest than stupid.

      You're definetely a (paid, I hope, otherwise your stupidity outstands your dishonesty by far) lackey of the classic entertainment branch. As such you see an opportunity to hinder competitors from the new entertainment branch by fueling the gameblamer's party.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2013 @ 4:40am

      Re: Feeding frenzy died down, now a dose of sanity.

      Hello, jackass! Pow, zoop, DRIVE-BY DMCA!

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Sep 18th, 2013 @ 9:43am

      Re: Feeding frenzy died down, now a dose of sanity.

      GTA no more turns you into a murderous thug than Minecraft turns you into a mineral-hungry miner.

       

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    Charlie, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 9:34pm

    A Matter Of Time

    "I immediately wondered how long it would take before we got someone blaming video games."

    As soon as I heard, I wondered how long until I'd read again on Techdirt that video games don't cause this stuff (And, in my opinion, they don't!)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2013 @ 11:07pm

    the mass shootings are frame ups. they want to get someone and they concoct the story so horrible that they would never be allowed back into normal society no matter what. similar tactics have been used against me.RT You I hope I don't get framed up

     

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    Mega1987 (profile), Sep 18th, 2013 @ 5:13am

    -_-"

    what a brilliant deduction about video games being the root cause of the shooting....

    what's next? playing cops and robbers will case those who play the robbers to become the actual robbers?

     

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    Christian, Nov 2nd, 2013 @ 10:29am

    Great Article

    I really can't say anything that wasn't stated by Mr.Geigner, great article! This article shows something that Fox doesn't have which is common sense and morals. The gaming industry has lowered the selling rate for selling mature games to minors without anybody telling them. Activison/Blizzard even wanted to research if violent video games were the cause of violence. They spent $4.2 million out of there own pocket and they joined the court case in California to back up the facts and to throw the opinions in the trash.

     

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