Games 'destigmatize' violence, says Connecticut governor

Democrat Dannel Malloy criticizes violent games, says society stands to make "great gains" by spending more time focusing on mental health treatment.

At the winter meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors this weekend, Democratic Connecticut governor Dannel Malloy criticized violent games for "destigmatizing" violence in the United States. As reported by the Connecticut Post, Malloy called on his peers to focus their efforts on removing the stigma from mental health treatment.

"If we spent as much time and energy on destigmatizing mental health treatment as we do in the proliferation of these video games that destigmatize violence, we as a society would make great gains," Malloy said.

Malloy's comments came a month after the schoolhouse massacre in Newtown, Conn. that left 20 children and six adults dead at Sandy Hook Elementary School. He recalled this day, saying, "the day that Newtown happened, there were games available that actually allowed people to go into a school in the game and shoot 'em up."

"Why do we do that?" Malloy added. "When we're willing to destigmatize violence and willing to bring it home to your living room or your den and put it on a 50-inch screen [and play games that award points for] when you hit someone with your semiautomatic and more points depending on how many times you hit someone with your semiautomatic, where is the social value in that? Is this the kind of thing we want to be involved in as a nation?"

President Obama earlier this week announced a $500 million, 23-point plan to reduce gun violence in the United States that included directing the Centers for Disease Control to investigate the relationship between violent game consumption and real-world violence.

Responding to Obama's plan, the Entertainment Software Association (the group that represents the industry's interests in Washington, D.C.) said scientific studies have proven no link between entertainment and real-world violent behavior exists.

Written By

Discussion

835 comments
Azzameen
Azzameen

A devout Roman Catholic, lecturing society on "social values" !?

Excuse me while I go read up on and admire the social values of the Holy Crusades, the burning of non-Catholics and scientists, and how society gained from the Pope manipulating European countries into war.

bick420
bick420

When he was a kid, he ran around with a toy gun pretending to be a cowboy shooting an indian, or a cop shooting a robber. Nothing violent about that? /shrug

Hypnotizer
Hypnotizer

They used to blame superman for guns and violence, now that has been transferred to videogames.

Violence has destigmatized violence. Violence has been around a lot longer than video games or superman.

vadagar1
vadagar1

LAME..... all games are violent, football, boxing, wrestling ...etc its a great way to vent anger and energy video games are no different, using a knife to eat does not make me want to kill people with it.

to do harm to another human being you need.... wait for it...... MOTIVE :O cause believe it or not, people don't hurt each other unless their is a god damn good reason for it. 

Serpentes420
Serpentes420

I'm still waiting for one of our supposed journalists to start asking some pertinent follow up questions to these idiot politicians when they start playing the blame video games game.


My first question to these jokers would be: Are you aware sir that these same videogames you claim to be partly to blame for the rise in mass shootings are also widely sold in European and Asian markets? 


And the follow up to that is: If videogame violence is a causal factor in mass shootings or violence in general, why do you believe we do not see as many acts of violence, particularly mass shootings, in these European and Asian countries where these games are consumed?


jessie82
jessie82

hope someone shoots him id love to see the shitstorm from that

Biggs613
Biggs613

I don't even know what to say anymore. All I can do lately is shake my head at these asinine politicians.

johnnyauau
johnnyauau

This is not really a laughing matter. The politicians, should seriously play videogames before they rush to such a judgement. Sometimes, blaming the media for sensationalising crime and horror will get themselves in hot water, that somehow, media shouldn't display such things would only increase the burden instead of putting minds at ease unless they have kids. Anyway, parents to blame? That doesn't include your own. Right? I don't get it.

hobomonkey
hobomonkey

It's destigmatize now? What happened to desensitize? 

rasterror
rasterror

Well then parents need to do what I do with my son, research and pay more attention to their lives.  If a game is too violent, lock out the console like I did with my 360 and PS3.  But make sure that you teach your child the difference between an M4 in Call of Duty and one in real life like I have.  I could let my son play CoD and I know it wouldn't make him feel violent.  I trust him far more with a M rated game than with a gun.  I've never heard of a person dying by being hit with a game disc or case or console even.  But accidental gun deaths....that's another story.  Stop blaming the media and make parents be parents and take the responsibility, make gun laws even more strict and don't have the NRA write them, and stop downplaying mental health.

edinko
edinko

"where is the social value in that? Is this the kind of thing we want to be involved in as a nation?"

MAybe he should evaluate first where is the social value for the nation in murdering people all around the globe in the name of so called "freedom" while invading and exploiting various countries before selling piece by piece to the corparate greed machinery.

If this would be WWII he would be basically saying that playing a shooter is worse than gasing people in camps

Alecmrhand
Alecmrhand

Politicians are useless tools.  Why voters keep giving them more power is my question. They keep electing the guys that say they want to control every aspect of our lives then act surprised when follow through.


Wake up America. You just put a whole lot of guys like this in office....including the President.  

Somebody89
Somebody89

Maybe get some research to back up your claims before talking out your a**

megakick
megakick

destigmatize violence? So does movies ,television, sports and cartoons... how many popular entertaining events aren't violent. Even music concerts are violent, pushing, shoving and  fighting.

johnnyauau
johnnyauau

I'm just thinking he's impressing his wife. Is his family like this?

el1mullet
el1mullet

It's in the responsibility of the parents to teach their kids right from wrong.  If you start demonizing video games for the content of the violence, you have to start demonizing decades of broadcast television, and movies.  I've played violent games my whole life, and the only thing they've ever done for me is keep me OUT of trouble.  Take some responsibility and sit down with your kid, while they are playing a violent video game, and  see what they think about it, and tell them why in real life that would be wrong.  If your kid can't handle it, and starts acting wierd, then turn it off.  Don't use violence in video games as an oar for your little campaign, or whatever you're up to, find something else. 

Muslim_Slayer
Muslim_Slayer

Wait, what game lets you shoot up a school? Someone please enlighten me.

Muddrox_dev
Muddrox_dev

Video games don't kill people, people kill people...

Devil_wings00
Devil_wings00

Ya but movies TOTALLY don't do the exact same thing lol They both aggrandize violence in the same way. If I'm pushing a few buttons or keys and looking at a world CLEARLY not our own, that isn't any worse then watching the terminator and seeing Schwarzenegger literally gun down a bloody police station lol 

 Not that any of it matters because any sane person knows that isn't reality, that it's entertainment and unreality. My 5 year old nephew can tell you stuff in a video game isn't real and shouldn't be imitated. I hate people that treat children like handicapped monkeys that can't function.  They know reality from unreality and if they don't that is a failing of the parents. So sick of discussing this topic.

sammoth
sammoth

Trying to get re-elected publicity. This idiot has the support of the teachers in Connecticut. Hey idiot why did one of your state teachers have that kind of arsenal at home ?

BoSnerdly
BoSnerdly

STFU politicians... you wanna talk about the examples that YOU set?
Let's start with 'destigmatizing' fiscal responsibilty.
Then let's talk about 'destigmatizing' honesty.
I can keep going...

Jebril
Jebril

Yes because people associate virtual reality and graphics with real life lol. That's why all the kids at Columbine started screaming when those kids started shooting other kids, cuz they were so 'desensitized'. People who don't play video games need to stop saying things about them. That's like me bashing cars when I've never really owned one after riding in one once.

Dragon_Nexus
Dragon_Nexus

"I'm gonna sit and talk about something I have no extended knowledge of with the aim of making myself appear relevent to the running of the country."

Wolf-Man2006
Wolf-Man2006

Is this governor even aware of America's history? We gained independence through gun violence long before video games were ever invented

sieg6529
sieg6529

And yet there are no studies that show a causative link between violent video games and real life violence.  

jtmellon
jtmellon

I just had a lev 90 Horde Mage tea bag me in WOW, I am mad.  Where is my ax, I am going out in the neighbor hood and I won't be back.    WOW am I angry.

blaze_boy30
blaze_boy30

Hey if violent video games are getting scrutinized, let bring in ALL forms of violent media in. How about TV shows,movies, the news? Those other forms of violent media that end up on our "50 inch screen TVs"? Don't even get me started on real world violence.

I think video games are being used as a scapegoat because the U.S. government does not want to delve any deeper into why the Sandy Hook attacks happened. Furthermore, I do not think they wholeheartedly want answer the question(s) of violence in our society. If they did that, they'd have to end up answering for all the various forms of violence they have committed and/or condoned at home and abroad. Putting media aside, we live in a world where brutal acts of violence can be hand-waved because they were caused to protect certain interests (those countries know who they are). Innocent people suffer and die in this world because their deaths are merely a means to an end. Where is the vehement resistance for this? I wonder what the Connecticut governor thinks about that?

Flint247
Flint247

I don't think it's violent games that can make people aggressive. However, whenever something happens while playing a video game that irritates you, whether it is a violent game or not, that may lead to aggressiveness (like the power cuts off, your team loses in a match, someone calls your name while you are playing, the phone rings, etc.)

Just my thought.

juiceair
juiceair

How about the politicians in Washington go through mental health treatment? I've seen more graphic content on the 6pm news and movies than I ever have in video games.

sortajan
sortajan

i would wager that news organizations like CNN and Fox "destigmatize" violence


am i the only one that remembers the photo of gaddafi's bloodied corpse being shoved in our faces everywhere we went? what about that man on fire that got the shit kicked out of him in glasgow? what about having cameras desperately trying to catch people jumping out of buildings on 9/11? and i'm pretty sure gabe newell didn't put saddam's execution video up on youtube.

diseasedliver
diseasedliver

Back in the 1950's they said it was comic books and rock music. In the 1920's they blamed everything on liquor and jazz. Video games are the new go to scapegoat. 

They'll never admit to what the real problem is though. Because addressing the real problems would cost the powers that be the most precious thing.

Money.

Aggie1295
Aggie1295

Maybe what we really need to stigmatize is politicians wasting our money on stupid things.

Komania
Komania

Why video games and not movies or other forms of media? Why don't they just ban guns, or pull out of the Middle-East, y'know, stop REAL violence.


Maybe they should stop bragging about a country established on war, and stop blaming video games for promoting violence.


I agree that young children shouldn't play M rated games for many reasons, but this is ridiculous.

MetatronTorment
MetatronTorment

Yet another baseless accusation. Here, I can make them, too: Politicians destigmatize lies and deceit. Wait...

hartattk
hartattk

A useless statement, less than that, an opinion. He doesn't even try to point to defunct tests to support his claim, simply says something as if it were irrefutable. Uses tragedy to push an agenda, blames industries for not paying for studies when that responsibility is on the governments shoulders and wraps it all up in an assumption that gaming experience directly correlates to real life experience.

His initial statement boils down to taking mental disease more seriously and breaking down the stigma surrounding them, yet he offers no solution as to how that can been achieved simply goes on a tirade of finger pointing.


As a side note i found it funny how he keeps blaming semi-automatics, it's like your mother saying she likes to "use the facebooks."

stailcookie
stailcookie

 Maybe he should go drop a few mil on "It's never OK to hit... a girl" public service announcements to feel like a civilized man.

abcdefgabcdefgz
abcdefgabcdefgz

You know maybe not games, but maybe its youtube videos with violence in them? Lets see about banning the internet or if too much resistance at least removing anything with violence from the internet? Im sure our smart politicians will make smart decisions for us like for last 50 years they cant manage debts or anything

Jake518
Jake518

He's quick to blame video games but we don't see him blaming violent books, now do we?

abcdefgabcdefgz
abcdefgabcdefgz

What do games have anything to do with anything? I feel we are all now that much more stupid for having read what he said. There is almost no logic behind his non sense yet he is in charge of our entire country. We are in lots of trouble

CTBradums
CTBradums

Read a book about any civilization in the past and you'll see far more acceptance of murder and killing than in modern times. If I had a penny for every time a man from the samurai caste gutted a handful of men for saying something even slightly insulting, I'd be a millionaire. And in Europe, entire cultures would be killed en masse and no one would even blink an eye. Half the time, people were cheering for it and glorifying the torture and killing of others.

These politicians and activists are just looking for the same old scapegoat they've been swatting at for decades now. Are there mindlessly violent games in circulation? Yep. Are they the reason kids murder others? I hiiighly doubt it. In each case shown, domestic stress and trauma led the individuals to choose murder. The Sandy Hook shooter's family were reported to be "gun nuts", and taught him how to shoot and care for guns. And his mother was reportedly borderline abusive, and he hated her with a passion. When you add a glorification of guns, access to assault rifles and high-capacity handguns, and a motive to murder, you're giving someone all the parts necessary for a shooting. Call of Duty didn't make a killer, his family did.

Ayato_Kamina_1
Ayato_Kamina_1

@rasterror Well said, good to hear from a responsible parent. When these tragedies happen the blame game just makes me sick. The parents blaming the games, the government blaming the games. A few years ago it was the explicit music that children were listening to that got the blame. 

I never quite understood how the parents could come out and complain about these when it should be the parent's responsibility to monitor what their children are playing / listening to. Same way they should monitor what their internet usage is.  

el1mullet
el1mullet

@Devil_wings00 Yea what a pathetic attempt, is this guy so desperate for .... jowls, that he brings up old news for some publicity? He needs to go be quiet and play some video games or something. 

Dragon_Nexus
Dragon_Nexus

@Flint247 So when something irritating happens, it can make you annoyed? Good lord I think you've cracked it.

All we have to do is make sure people are happy 24/7 and then no-one will ever get mad!

simon1812
simon1812

@Flint247  I think ppl get far more stressed when those stuff you mention happens while in the office, at work, ever watched the movie "office space" the reality is far worse and more depressing...but that depends where u r working at, some palces aernt all that bad :D

vadagar1
vadagar1

@Jake518 or bad parents, or school bulling, or discrimination, or stero type crap...etc

oooooohhh or the news :D or animals on NG cause those lions do violence to deers

Flint247
Flint247

@simon1812 @Flint247 Yes, it can be more than just games, actually. Things can irritate people and cause them be aggressive.