Texas A&M professor Christopher Ferguson pens an op-ed on the Grand Theft Auto IV controversy for the Eureka Reporter:
Violent video games do not cause violent behavior. There are no good data at all to suggest that they do…. as the consumption of violent video games in our society has skyrocketed, violent crimes, including those among youths, have plummeted… We can be sure that violent video games are not sparking a youth violence epidemic because there is no youth violence epidemic.
In my own research, I have found that family violence exposure as a child and the individual’s innate (probably genetic) personality are related to violent criminal behaviors, but that violent video game exposure is not…
we need to give the current generation of youths more credit. Today’s youths are healthier in most respects than any other group of youths since the 1960s. Today’s youths are less likely to engage in violent crime, use drugs or alcohol, get pregnant, commit suicide or drop out of school than were youths of previous generations.