In the wake of last week’s shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, discussions over video games’ influence over teenagers with unstable mental health have been put under the spotlight again. This time, politicians talk about introducing some strong measures to ensure that violence tied to video games is, at least, productive in some way.
This strong proposal comes from Rhode Island Republican politician Robert (Bobby) Nardolillo, who wants to introduce a legislation to increase mental health and counseling resources in schools by implementing an additional tax on all rated “M” or higher video games. The increase proposed by Nardolillo would add an additional 10% tax to all violent video games, since banning them altogether is impossible. His statement reads:
There is evidence that children exposed to violent video games at a young age tend to act more aggressively than those who are not.
This bill would give schools the additional resources needed to help students deal with that aggression in a positive way.
While this might be a strict proposal, it’s true that the World Health Organization’s ICD-11 recognizes that excessive gaming is a mental health disorder and that, even if it’s unfair to all mindful gamers, some precaution must be taken in order to avoid this matter to be taken further. Giving a higher price tag to “M” rated video game titles in order to help kids with such disorders seems like a good deal, if that ever happens that is.
A new study published in the journal Social Affective and Cognitive Neuroscience has just revealed that playing violent video games have an effect on the brain’s ability to process emotions. The experiment was conducted on gamers mostly playing first-person shooting games like Call of Duty. The study indicates that these game changes their way of thinking and acting, making the player less sympathetic.
Do you agree with Robert Nardolillo’s proposal about a violent game tax? Do you believe video games have a role to play in kids’ aggression?