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Last Updated: Aug 9th, 2013 - 08:51:56


Who, what is to blame?
By Michael Wright
Aug 11, 2012, 18:52

A temple shooting in Wisconsin, a mass murder at a Colorado movie theater, a crazed gunman shooting at will on a Texas military base and students shooting and killing their teachers and classmates at Columbine over a decade ago... all were senseless acts of violence, but who or what is to blame?
Some say that conditions such as post traumatic stress disorder could be to blame. Others say it is because of a dysfunctional family life as a child. Some say it is because gun control laws are not strict enough and others simply scratch their heads, knowing there probably is no simple answer to the “whys” surrounding such incidents.
Is Hollywood to blame because of the violence in motion pictures? No. We make the choice to watch or to not watch violent movies. As long as people are going to the theaters to see such movies, Hollywood is going to continue to produce them.
Are violent video games to blame? Again, I don’t think so. We choose whether or not to purchase video games for ourselves or our children. The games, like the movies mentioned above, have ratings that indicate what audience the product is appropriate for.
Just because someone plays a game that contains scenes of violence does not mean the gamers are going to replicate those acts.
I offer myself as an example.
Sometimes I dig my wireless guitar out of the closet and play a few songs. When I place the Guitar Hero software into my gaming console, it doesn’t make me drink alcohol and do drugs. Instead, it offers a brief break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Just because I fire up Grand Theft Auto every once in a while, I have yet to find myself walking up to a driver on the street, punching him in the face and stealing his car. I have not mugged an old lady walking down the street minding her own business nor have I shot a cop. (None of which will ever happen.)
I own a gun. It was my grandfather’s. He gave it to my father and my father, in turn, gave it to me. Just because I have a bad day or get mad at someone , I have never pulled out the gun and headed out to “teach them a lesson”.
After I watched “Rambo” in my younger days, I didn’t thik I could get a machine gun and head overseas and take on an army. I knew John Rambo, played by Sylvester Stallone, was fictitous. I knew the difference between fantasy and reality.
What it boils down to is the fact that we are all responsible for our own actions. We can give in to situations or get stronger because of them. We can find strength or fall victim. The choice is ours and no one else is to blame.