Organizers in the community of Southington, Connecticut are planning to offer gift certificates in exchange for donated games.
SouthingtonSOS, a group that was formed after the recent storms that hit the east coast, are organizing the drive that will end in a bonfire of digital media. The coalition says it’s actions do not assert the common misconception that video games were the cause of the killing in nearby Newtown.
However, they do argue that violent video games and films desensitize children to various acts of violence.
The “video game amnesty‘ is set to take place on January 12th. The drive is providing dumpsters where games, CD’s or DVD’s will be collected. While all various forms of media are welcome, the event is specifically aimed at video games as it is called The Violent Video Game Return Program. The group released a statement saying:
“As people arrive in their cars to turn in their games of violence, they will be offered a gift certificate donated by a member of the Greater Southington Chamber of Commerce as a token of appreciation for their action of responsible citizenship. Violent games turned in will be destroyed and placed in the town dumpster for appropriate permanent disposal.”
And by permanent disposal the group means they plan on setting alight the collected materials in Bradbury-esque style.
Despite numerous studies on the subject of the effects of violent video games and how exposure “had neither short-term nor long-term predictive influences on either positive or negative outcomes” people persist in the belief that they are the sole cause of a violent act.
Police in Newtown still have not released the motive behind Adam Lanza’s actions, but I imagine it’s far more complex than the fact he played Call of Duty. Stating that the reason for violence is a film, book, game, or song might make the actions easier to understand, but humanity is far more complicated than that.
There is no single reason for a violent act. There are a million facets, factors, possibilities and scenarios that have led up to that moment, and not a single one is more or less important than the other.
Whether you believe games to be art or not, burning them is not the answer.
Do you think that violence in media is the cause for violence in reality? Or are people just naturally pre-disposed to violence?