Wed., July 6
Gaming and the System
Last week, the Supreme Court ruled that communities can not prevent retailers from selling violent, graphic, or indecent video games to minors. Though First Amendment advocates cheered the ruling, there was instant recoil from parents and parenting groups.
Policing what video games kids play, what they watch on television, and how soon they see it takes a Herculean effort. Violent and lewd content is now available on any smartphone. We beam images of war in real-time to TV viewers, and watch simulations of the Osama bin Laden raid for weeks afterward. We have 3-D violence and gore on the silver screen, and every edgy crime show under the sun on demand. But how do we teach our kids to wade through all of this? After a holiday weekend that saw stabbings and shoot-outs all across Boston, how can we educate children about non-violence and conflict resolution? And what can we do after they've seen or lived through violence?
Jean Kilbourne: author, speaker and media analyst. She's the creator of the film series "Killing Us Softly: Advertising's Image of Women," and is the author of Can't Buy My Love: How Advertising Changes the Way We Think and Feel.
Betsy McAlister Groves: co-director of Boston Medical Center's Child Protection Team, and the founder of the Child Witness to Violence Project.