Eight months after the tragic Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, a Connecticut lawmaker is waging a battle against violent video games. House Speaker Brendan Sharkey sent letters to three video game executives asking them to stop promoting real gun-brands in their games.
A report by the pro-gun control organization, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense, said that licensing deals between video game companies and gun manufacturers may lead to promotional campaigns to entice players to purchase the firearms in real life.
“The gun manufacturers paying for product-placement in children’s games is abhorrent,” Hartford Chapter Leader of Moms Demand Action Deborah Lewis said.
It is still unclear whether players of these video games are more likely to engage in real violence.
“What we do know is that there is a sub-group of children who are more vulnerable, poor impulse control, limited frustration tolerance, poor social skills, that tend to indulge more in video games, and even violent video games, as a source of pleasure,” Hartford Hospital child Psychologist Laura Saunders said.
However, Saunders believes the games can make children emotionally numb.
“They become emotionally numb to violence, to what it means to shoot someone and have them die or fall down,” Saunders said.
Adam Lanza, the 20-year-old who shot 20 first graders and 6 educators, was an avid player of the video game “Call of Duty”. He often used the bushmaster rifle when playing the game. That is the same rifle he used on the day of the shooting.