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Desensitization to violence? Is it too easy?

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  • #16
    Callooh, do you know of any studies on the effects on children of having single fathers? It would seem logical that if not having a father has a negative effect then not having a mother would have a similar effect.

    What if there is something else to blame? It seems to me that all the people who have snapped and gone on shooting rampages were under a lot of stress before they snapped. It has been shown that physical activity alleviates a lot of mental stress(I can dig up a citation or two if you want). For all of human history up until a few decades ago we lived in an intensely physical world. With the invention of the automobile and all our fancy technology most people do not get much exercise at all. People do not have an outlet built into their lives to burn off the mental stress that accumulates over time. Their stress levels rise and they cannot contain it and well, snap.

    I can point you to studies showing the increased stress levels, and you can go to your local mall to see the widespread effects of not having enough exercise. I do not know of any studies that back up any of the rest of what I said, but given humanity's obsession with violence throughout history that seems to be a far more likely scenario than video games affecting people.

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    • #17
      >>I do not know of any studies that back up any of the rest of what I said, but given humanity's obsession with violence throughout history that seems to be a far more likely scenario than video games affecting people.

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      • #18

        Suddenly I am reminded of "Ender's Game".

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        • #19
          "do you know of any studies on the effects on children of having single fathers?" No, but your logic comparing lack of mother to lack of father sounds sound. The circumstance is, however, less common and if there are such studies they'll be relying on less data.

          Exercise, if one can but does not, is a good way to realize improvement in one's health and probably in one's happiness. Or if one can and does, continuing to do so is a good idea.

          But it seems unlikely exercise is much of a factor in spree killings. These killings are so vanishingly rare that there isn't much data to analyze.
          (This message has been edited by Callooh! Callay!)

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          • #20
            I had a class once that made a study of Columbine. Along with the student's other underlying psychological issues, they were all under a lot of stress from bullying, and other sources. It is my personal theory that stress can often be a catalyst for violent reactions in certain people. Think of it like chemicals, there are many that you can mix together and have very controlled reactions, but if you add just a little to much of something, or add the wrong chemical you can have a very dangerous reaction.

            I don't know, like you said thankfully this sort of thing doesn't happen enough for there to be much research. I've played a lot of video games though, and I played cops and robbers with my cousins using bb guns in their back yard, I don't see it desensitizing me to violence. Humankind has a history full of violence. It is our default state, so when people have problems they revert back to their root programming. I think that that is what these massacres are about, and no amount of legislation or armed guards at schools are going to stop that. If someone bent of violence cannot get to a school then where will they go? The library? Attack a school bus? How about a park? Once someone makes that decision they will find a way.

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            • #21
              Looking at the various threads that have kicked around on this subject (both on this forum and elsewhere) in recent weeks something that has struck me is that everyone seems to want a simple a solution to what is a complex problem.

              So far I have seen

              Too many guns
              Too few guns
              Single parents
              Computer games
              The economy
              Gay marriage
              Too little religion
              Too much religion
              American foreign policy
              Poor education
              The Republican Party
              The Democratic Party
              Rock music
              Gangster Rap
              Blacks
              Whites

              The list goes on and on and on.

              It strikes me that the best thing Americans can do to fix their problem with the murder rate is to realise that whatever the solution to the problem is it is likely to be a complex one involving many different factors and not just each individual's hobby horse.

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              • #22
                Where do we learn that it is good-and-right to kill innocents if they impose on our fleeting sense of mental well-being?

                Ask the 50 million aborted for the sake of right to privacy.

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