It is already commonly known that the vast majority of those who watch violent games do not go around killing their parents, what is not as clear is the extent to which these forms of entertainment can further distort and provoke the disturbed mind . Watching CNN Piers Morgan “Inside the Mind of a killer” interview Joshua Cooke - who “wanting to die” at 19 years shot both parents at their Virginia home in 2003 – raises old questions on the social responsibility of media. Another gang rape is reported in Mumbai india … many cases of molestation of women … almost creating a new social norm. Joshua said he had been thinking these thoughts for a long time until the particular day ...”after finishing watching all the violent video games… I turned on the Body Song and looked up at “The Matrix” poster…” I then decided to end my life and my parents"…Joshua acted on his decision.
Piers tweeted “ Impossible to watch this interview with double-killer Joshua Cooke and not conclude that violent video games can provoke violence.”
If we could easily discern and profile for mental disturbance then perhaps we could enforce that unstable persons should not have access to violent games. How can we preach the remedy of self-control to the mind that is already struggling with extreme distortions?
David wrote in the Psalms of extreme periods of discouragement and depression . Even Paul admitted to suicidal despair . The war to maintain mental balance becomes more vicious in a society raging with selfish competition for opportunities and a distortion of the concept of success. A war in which many lose the battle for esteem. More are vulnerable than we care to admit ...but especially the youth.
In another development in the UK, David Cameron is clamping on sexual abuse of children and announces stricter measures to control porn …starting with the “extreme” genres involving children and shaming families for the first time to deliberately opt in if they want any porn on home networks ... thus admitting something that has long been known - a link between adult entertainment and criminal perversion.... and acceptance that porn threatens safety of the populace.
In the US, the porn industry is estimated as a $8 Billion market - the same size of the bottled water business. The size of the video game marke, targeted at 67% of households in the US, is estimated at $10.5 Billion. A 2009 Federal trade Commission report to US congress concluded …” that industry members routinely targeted children in their advertising and marketing of violent entertainment products and that children under age 17 could purchase these products relatively easily … the Commission’s undercover shop found that it is relatively easy for underage shoppers to purchase explicit-content music, compared to movies and electronic games.”
If the Piers interview suggests that a disturbed mind should not be exposed to violent games and Cameron is worried that pornography is an undesirable social ingredient endangering children …should it not be increasingly obvious that violent entertainment and porn should be banned in its entirety except of course it has some other value? It should be evident that it is the same business infrastructure that produces porn that extends its product offering to children. Students of addiction will confess that there is no satisfaction to increasingly insatiable urges and the law of demand and supply will force a black market at best. Banning violent games/movies and “adult” entertainment attacks a $15 Billion business in US which is the principal reason why many will instantly scoff at this blog without slightest guilt that this innocent amusement can provoke murder, rape and serious abuse in a small number of “nuts”. Why do we not see the responsibility to protect the vulnerable influenced by the wrong music and art-forms ... when these forms can motivate atrocities? Why do we not protect the future victims of violence, mass killings and the undefended parents struggling to raise troubled youths by simply abolishing this trash? When will we realise that in most cases, that which is unsafe for children is unsafe?
The Bible disagrees with the more "correct" conclusion that it is only the mentally disturbed that are vulnerable to violent and extreme entertainment and sexual images which sadly has permeated the fashion and behavioural culture even in the Church. Go to the average Mega Church Youth program and observe what is on the stage … or observe struggles with clergy to manage wardrobe malfunctions at signings of marriage registers … or listen to what is presently called worship. All people – and not just the "disturbed" - are influenced by what we see, hear and think – even music. Media influences thoughts and repeated images will ultimately shape personality.
Pro_23:7 For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: …
Meanwhile, somewhere as I speak, a disturbed teen in a room covered with violent posters, listening to hard rock music switches on his ipad to play another violent game … reality is further disturbed by his uncontrolled access to strong sexual images… making his mind at best a sewer or even worse a mine field waiting to detonate. Society turns a blind eye because it craves to be entertained and fears the loss of market… and the saints shop for what can be “safely” admitted into services to attract more “members”.
Rom_12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Tit_3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;