Statement on Video Games With School Violence Themes (2011)

Much of the empirical research on the topic of violent video games indicates that such activities increase aggressive thoughts and behaviors and increase angry feelings. Anecdotal data about many of the school shooters indicate preoccupation with violence. The tragedies at Columbine, Virginia Tech, and Northern Illinois University are among the most horrible violent acts on campus in American history. As an organization of professionals based in campus mental health settings we feel compelled to decry the development and marketing of video games that present such video activities as "fun". We urge the businesses and individuals involved with these types of video games to stop their development and/or production. It is disconcerting that the development of such video games would even be considered. It is disrespectful to survivors, and inconsiderate to the families, friends and loved ones of those who have been killed or injured in school shootings. It would be ill advised and regrettable to market such games given the potential harm they could cause.

The American Psychological Association has posted a "Resolution on Violence in Video Games and Interactive Media" at: AUCCCD supports APA’s resolution. As campus mental health professionals who first hand experience the tragedy and devastation that occurs in the aftermath of campus violence, AUCCCD believes the production of such products is most deplorable and unfortunate.

We issue this statement out of concern for students, staff, faculty, administrators, parents and families we serve.

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