Games Turning AU Kids into Knife-Wielders

An Australian youth worker is blaming videogames for what he claims is a growing problem of kids carrying knives.

Following the in-school stabbing death of a 12-year old boy at the hands of a 13-year old in Brisbane, Les Twentyman, an advocate for young homeless people, was asked to speak before a government inquiry into the matter.

According to ABC, Twentyman blamed games for desensitizing children to violence, in turn making them more likely to carry, and to eventually use, knives.

Twentyman continued:

Normally they’d have a fight and people might ring around them, and it would be one-on-one, and when one [child fell] to the ground it would be over.

But today that is not the case because of the amount of violent entertainment that these young people are absorbing. They lose sight of reality and become desensitized…

Twentyman sees knife-carrying children as a potential  epidemic, citing a young girl who told him that carrying a knife was as common as carrying a mobile phone.

While there were 19 reported knife incidents at Victoria schools in 2009, up from 11 in 2008, Education Minister Bronwyn Pike denied Twentyman’s claims of a growing cutlery problem, saying, “Yes, there was a slight increase, but these figures do go up and down a bit, but there hasn’t really been an overall trend of increase.”

This story is eerily similar to one from 2008, in which a wave of UK stabbings was also attempted to be linked with violent media.

Thanks Ryan!

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  1. sharpshooterbabe says:

    "Twentyman sees knife-carrying children as a potential  epidemic, citing a young girl who told him that carrying a knife was as common as carrying a mobile phone."

    When they said this in the story, I didn’t read anything on here about games being the sole entity of wielding knives by kids or teens. Only in the last paragraph, last sentence about media. Like seriously?!?!!? Media!?!?! That would tell me Media being like the news & NOT games. All it said what "blaming videogames". Okay I get that, but he doesn’t say specifically the videogames. Let me see the statistics, please. Then the rest of the gaming community will agree w/you or against you. Right now, I disagree w/you.

        Again, time & time again, we fellow gamers tell you & others that blame video games that it is NOT video games that cause the violence. It is the social scene from peers around them, the parents that have problems w/their kids & kids having probs w/the parents & fights erupt. Abuse in the home or by frineds or drugs. NOT VIDEO GAMES! 

         Plus maybe the kids want to stay safe, so the only thing they get is a knife on them. Appearantly these people that think about violent video games are one sided & don’t look or don’t want to look at the other possibilities.


    "It’s better to be hated for who you are, then be loved for who you are not." – Montgomery Gentry

  2. Furluge says:

    Why is it when they talk about article like this they never mention the fact that schools can be violent places where pretty much everyone who goes through their 13 years there ends up in a few violent altrecations, and Billy is little and being pounded on by a linebacker hopped on on steroids, he’s more likely to arm himself somehow rather than whining to authority which hasn’t done anything for Billy for the entire time he’s been in the system.

  3. deuxhero says:

    Don’t suppose it has anything to do with them living in a country where every animal (except the sheep, which are not native) in the country wants to, and can, kill them?

  4. eston says:

    I don’t understand how they can blame games for this when currently the types of games they are blaming are not allowed to be sold in Australia.

  5. RavenMitah says:

    Twentyman sees knife-carrying children as a potential  epidemic, citing a young girl who told him that carrying a knife was as common as carrying a mobile phone.

    You know, when I was a young girl, before video games were popular, a lot of boys (particularly those in boy scouts) carried around swiss army knives.  They felt it was "cool" having one.  Not one of them decided to go staby staby on each other.  Hmmmm….


  6. game4sace says:


    "Twentyman sees knife-carrying children as a potential  epidemic, citing a young girl who told him that carrying a knife was as common as carrying a mobile phone."

    The plural of anecdote is not data.

  7. Beacon80 says:

    Clearly these kids haven’t played video games.  Nobody actually uses knives.  If you’re going for melee damage, you want a sword, preferably a katana.  Assuming you don’t have access to chainsaws, of course.

    Knives are just there so Black Mages can do piddly damage against enemies to weak to waste MP on.

  8. Mr.Tastix says:

    I did say there were many reasons people become violent, I didn’t really go into too much detail about why one would carry weapons around with them because, that too, has many underlying reasons. I used to do the same thing out of fear, but I never actually used them nor wanted to.

    My point is that it’s not solely video games that are the problem, and I’m sick of hearing about how it is. There ARE various reasons a person is violent or a person carries weapons around them, video games isn’t the biggest reason on that list, not from my experience.

    — Randi Tastix

  9. Adamas Draconis says:

    You realize that I’m talking folding pocket knives with like a 3-4 inch blade which most of us used on the farms where we lived? I’m not talking about a bloody 12 inch long K-Bar military blade.

    Hunting the shadows of the troubled dreams.

  10. chadachada321 says:

    Because police are always there to make sure that YOU don’t get hurt. Not only that, but there is absolutely NO chance that the person attacking you won’t be carrying a knife.

    I bet you also think that carry-conceal should be illegal. "Don’t carry pepper-spray or Mace or a gun, women, just yell and scream when you are being raped."

    "Better to have it and not need it, then to need it and not have it."

    -Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

  11. chadachada321 says:

    Now hold up. I know a person that was so afraid of some of the other kids at my high school that he carried a knife solely for his protection. Fear may be why some kids carry, it doesn’t have to be for offensive reasons.

    -Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

  12. Magic says:

    Now now, clearly there is a simple answer for knife crime – of course it is VIDEO GAMES and nothing more. We should thank this clever man in the news story for working it out! Those young people play these games that have knives in and then go and use knives. Oh, it’s so simple, it’s nice to know isn’t it? After all, why should we listen to scientists and experts with their facts, statistics and complicated opinions?

    Let’s ban all of those nasty video games and there’ll be no more violent crime. The world will be a much better place – and after all, isn’t that what we want? Young folk can go and play with balls and sticks.


    (This post is best imagined as being read by a crazy old woman. Also, I completely agree with you. Some days I’m absolutely amazed by humanity’s rising intelligence and evolving awareness of existence, only on the next day I’m brought crashing down to Earth due to comments from intellectual retards like this who think one single factor plays a part in human behaviour)

  13. Mr.Tastix says:

    My question to this guy is: Can you prove it? Can this guy prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that video games is what is causing children and teenagers to be violent? That the reason they’re wielding knives is actually because of games, and nothing to do with something like gangs, drugs, bad parenting and other influences they children go through in their everyday routines?

    And furthermore, if he can prove it, would this proof hold up in a court of law? It’s no use saying you have evidence to back your bullshit up if it won’t hold up in the legal system. If it’s not gonna hold in front of a judge, why should I believe you?

    If he says he has evidence he is lying, if he tries to gather evidence he will fail. People have tried time and time again to link video games to violence but there are so many variables and so many reasons are person becomes violent that you cannot prove that video games are the sole cause of violence. People have tried, and people have failed. People also tried to find out if video games could cause long-term aggression, make "normal" calm people into raging desensitized buffoons and again, this was never proven without a shadow of a doubt.

    I think games can cause you to become desensitized yes, but become so greatly desensitized that you openly carry a weapon around with you and are literally not afraid to use it? I refuse to believe that. I’ve played video games, violent video games, since I was 3. In some form or another. And whilst video games do get me frustrated and angry this is only short-term, I do not go to town with a knife on my back and a pistol by my waist, it’s not necessary and it’s a rather stupid thing to do.

    There are MANY reasons people become violent, especially children and teenagers. Video games can be cause just as much as drugs, alcohol or any other sort of bad influence can be. Even bad parenting can cause a child to "snap" and become far more aggressive than normal. I’m sick of these people automatically accusing video games as the root cause when there are much worse things to desensitize your child with.

    Anyone watch the news lately? Or how about your average movie aired on TV, especially in the weekends? A lot of the movies I see aired on television and violent movies, and the news does nothing but warn the viewer of any violent images they may see, and that does nothing to prevent someone from actually seeing them if they shouldn’t be (such as children who CAN be influenced by such things).

    — Randi Tastix

  14. Mr.Tastix says:

    Everything’s wrong with carrying a weapon, if you feel the need to carry one to feel safe than something is SERIOUSLY wrong. It’s also not the point if you have it never use it but that you have it and COULD use it. Doesn’t matter why.

    — Randi Tastix

  15. Adamas Draconis says:

    Considering half the kids I went to school with carried pocketknives, including myself. Unless they are actualy being used the issue is…what??

    Hunting the shadows of the troubled dreams.

  16. BearDogg-X says:

    Wonder how much Twentyman was paid off by the Continental Cretin of Australia to lie in a government inquiry.

    Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Hornets, Jack Thompson can geaux chase a chupacabra. Hell will stay frozen over for quite a while since the Saints won the Super Bowl.

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  17. Rodrigo Ybáñez García says:

    Meanwhile, at Atkinson´s office:

    BisonYes.jpg image by Janus-rBisonYes.jpg image by Janus-rBisonYes.jpg image by Janus-r

    (also, insert strangely fitting background music here…)

    Because right now is the apocalypse out there, and 5 years old with knives are running and terrorizing the streets around the world.

    DAMN YOU, Trauma Center!!! DAMN YOU!!!


    My DeviantArt Page (aka DeviantCensorship):

  18. kagirinai says:

    Here’s a thought.

    What if, internationally, we had a mark — a mark which indicates factuality. We could even call it a ‘Fact Mark’, and documents with it would be ‘facted’. Now to go with the Fact Mark, would be a single legal requirement: any document in any media which bears the fact mark (with specific exceptions allowed, like copyright laws) must contain factual content. Anything claimed in that content must be proven.

    This of course, doesn’t apply to statements like, "I believe…" or "We hypothosize…", but would DEFINITELY apply to things like "[…] because of the amount of violent entertainment that these young people are absorbing".

    Any author of any media who states something as fact, but is rather conjecture, assumption, mistruth or other non-factual content, will be forced to publish (at their expense) a correction and retraction. Additionally, they would not be allowed to mark their work with the Fact Mark again for a period which would be expanded exponentially for each infraction.

    Does this seem unreasonable? Because it’s distinctly that lack of reason which riles me up so completely. Were I allowed my emotional response, people found being dilberately untruthful in media would be killed, and people found stating something unproven as fact would be beaten severely. The maybe it would STOP.

  19. ZippyDSMlee says:

    I say its due to consertives trying to take over the country and the youth is fighting back…or consertive youth is jsut nipping trouble in the bud…..


    Until lobbying is a hanging offense I choose anarchy! CP/IP laws should not effect the daily life of common people!

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