CNN host tries and fails to link videogames to violence

CNN's Erin Burnett last night tried desperately to make a psychologist blame videogames for gun violence, attempting to coerce him into agreeing with her that "violent" games make people more likely to kill.

"There's a saying that guns don't kill people, videogames do," began Burnett, before she invited William Pollack onto the show to try and make him confirm it.

Pollack, for his part, was quick to label M-rated games as "heinous" and said he believed fantasy violence ought to be controlled by the government. However, his qualifying sentiment that videogames alone can't turn a person into a killer seemed to aggravate Burnett, who continued to push him into saying otherwise.

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Queasy2115d ago (Edited 2115d ago )

Fail by Burnett, fail by the psychologist, fail by CNN, fail by politicians and fail by the media/political complex in general.

There's been no proof on what games Lanza played, how long he played it or if even affected his psyche if he did play games. Just a couple of unsourced stories from a couple of media outlets parroted by others. But everyone sure is quick to rush out saying the gov't needs to control an entire industry...

Blacktric2115d ago

Hey, it's all about whatever they can find to make a story out of. They don't give a crap about research or finding facts. They only give a shit about causing dumb, unfounded, controversy for dimwits to watch or listen to.

LOGICWINS2115d ago

Right. It's all about creating drama/controversy for ratings. When she said "points", I lol'd.

adorie2115d ago (Edited 2115d ago )

Screw the story. "But everyone sure is quick to rush out saying the gov't needs to control an entire industry..."

I don't want the stupid government controlling the industry. Remember when WE used to be the government? Now it's people with political ties and the most money.

Baka-akaB2114d ago

the most annoying part is that those games are sold worldwide . I dont see how one country should dictate and decide the content of videogames for everyone else .

The_Klank2114d ago

If that were to happen you would see alot of studios close shop and move elsewhere.

Which is why all of this is misdirection used to avoid the real issue.
I mean in that very same segment they talk about loss of jobs by controlling the 'assault rifle'.
Imagine the loss of jobs from studio closures.

juandren2114d ago (Edited 2114d ago )

#1: (Okay I know I'm technically replying to 1.1, but I have a point to make). In 5 years of viewing N4G almost daily, your comment is the first I've seen to have that many agrees and 0 disagrees. I'm happy gamers can agree on the sanctity of our beloved interest, if nothing else

Edit: In fact, scrolling down the forum, it seems there are no disagrees. I am a proud gamer tonight

Edit #2: Wow after seeing this I can understand why Jaffe was so damn pissed

BattleAxe2114d ago

If the media cared about facts, they would have actually questioned the official government story regarding 911.

knowyourstuff2114d ago

The ESRB had it exactly correct - "Nations and cultures all over the world enjoy the same movies, music and videogames that the US does, yet the US still has tragically high gun violence statistics that are unique to just the US. This means the answer cannot be found in media."

You need to look at the lowest common denominators - the things unique to your own country when your the only one who has a particular problem. Mental illness exists in all developed nations, it isn't unique to the US, and it certainly isn't better serviced by much in other countries. The problem is that its legal in all 50 states to carry concealed weapons, and acquiring weapons is as easy as pie in the US compared to other countries. In other countries you need multiple permits to carry weapons. Countries like Britain have zero guns, all guns are outlawed with no exceptions, even their police don't have guns. Britain, as a result, has 45-50 gun deaths per year in an extremely densely populated area. The US has over 60 gun deaths every 2 days. With more than 11,000 gun deaths per year, the answer is obvious to the entire world except to those living in a bubble in the US who don't get it, and will never get it.

ChrisW2114d ago (Edited 2114d ago )

When I was a kid, playing Cowboys and Indians or Cops and Robbers was super big. Of my generation and numerous prior, how many of us turned into mass killers? It's not the violent content we are exposed to, it's something else...

My opinion is, it's the over prognosis of mental illnesses and then prescribing psychotropics that might not help. In fact most people experience extreme setbacks, even worse than before they were prescribed, when they stop taking their meds. Server depression is the most common of the possible with drawl symptons of much of the medication people are given.

Parents need to stop taking the easy way out and looking to medicine to help their children!

JP13692114d ago (Edited 2114d ago )


Ironic name for someone who only seems to deal in half truths. Yes, Britain does have less gun violence, because there aren't any guns. But, they also experience more overall violent crime, because there are no guns and people aren't able to defend themselves. In fact, with the exception of Australia, Britain has a higher violent crime rate than any other rich nation. Criminals know its citizens are helpless and simply choose to use other means to prey on them.
It's funny to see people excuse videogames by - rightly - pointing out that it's an issue of personal responsibility; and yet the same doesn't hold true when you're not talking about your hobby. Just another hypocrite speaking from ignorance.

P.S. Oh, since you seem to like statistics so much, how about this: in Chicago, the city with the strictest gun control laws in the nation, the murder rate is exploding. Forty-two people were killed in the month of January and the city is poised to witness more than 500 murders before the year is out.

matgrowcott2114d ago (Edited 2114d ago )


That statistic is pretty old now (the article I found on it was from when Tony Blair was PM, so it's AT LEAST six years old, almost definitely closer to ten years) and our violent crime stat has actually fallen by almost 10% in the last year. Going on a larger scale, crime has dropped nearly 29% in the last 10 years - that's based on the latest figures.

Add to that the fact that we count violent crime as anything including violence. That includes (but is not limited to) pushing and shoving. Not sure about you guys because I couldn't find concrete evidence on... well... anything without more searching than I was willing to do.

Pretending like the fact that we don't have guns makes the crime rate higher is ridiculous and it's just an attempt at getting support from people who don't know what they're talking about. Not a million miles away from those people who were saying there's years of waiting for anything on the NHS, so nationalized health care is a bad idea.

It's bull. Keep talking about half-truths, why don't you?

Tres212114d ago

i think they should do more research heck im tempted 2 help em, im goin 2 do my own Super Size Me, im thinkin Game on lik ur Crazy...nothing but gaming 4 a month straight see how many ppl i kill after...but what if i dont kill ppl however will i help prove there point?

Mounce2114d ago

Bill O' Reilly? Meet Cunt O' Reilly!

Bill's new wife!

JP13692114d ago

"Pretending like the fact that we don't have guns makes the crime rate higher is ridiculous and it's just an attempt at getting support from people who don't know what they're talking about."
Ridiculous statement proven wrong by history and common sense. The simple fact is that most people want to be good and live what they would consider to be a normal life. But, you are always going to have another element of society, composed of the disenfranchised and the mentally ill, that will use any opportunity they are given to take advantage of the people that simply want to live in peace. It goes without saying that the people that live a life of crime and violence become quite good at crime and violence. So ask yourself, how is an everyday citizen unaccustomed to brutish behavior supposed to protect him/herself during an encounter with the aforementioned brute, especially if said thug has a bat or a knife? A gun is the only guaranteed equalizer for any situation when your life or the lives of those you love is being put in danger by someone who seeks only to take advantage of what they perceive as a "soft" majority. So no, I'm not saying that a lack of guns will suddenly create violence in and of itself. I'm saying that criminals are emboldened when they know that their targets are unable to defend themselves. And yes, the study is old but, like you, I had a hard time finding anything more recent that centered on the effects of a society that chooses to leave itself woefully unprotected. The facts listed about Chicago, however, are very recent. Interesting that you've failed to touch on that...
In the interest of keeping this from continuing to build into a wall of text, I'll simply provide a link to an article that takes the time to highlight the issue with more nuance.

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LackTrue4K2115d ago

the dam government them self's is trying to keep there citizens down!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 4uck her and her ideas!!

specialguest2114d ago (Edited 2114d ago )

Wow, she really tried hard to come at him about video games causing kids to become violet, but she got shot down every time.

I used to think Fox News was bad, but CNN is just as bad when it comes to certain issues, agendas, and their bias views.

PersonMan2114d ago

"shot down every time" ... I see what you did there. ;-)

Snookies122114d ago

Bubble buddy, very intelligent. :]

flyingmunky2114d ago

Here's a summation photo.

Seraphim2114d ago

the only thing Government to control is News. there's absolutely no reason, cause, or benefit to the way the media has ran itself or the "News" they beat to death then continue to beat it to death w/ death leg when then they turn to the arm and keep beating it.... I bet news, ie Monkey See, Monkey Do has a bigger impact on all this hoopla than any other media.......

Tonester9252114d ago


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BlackIceJoe2115d ago

I really hate this stuff. How is M games worse then say an R rated movie. Gore in R rated films look more real then they do in video games. The same can be said about guns in movies too. Yet I would not say films are evil. Why because it is the person that is evil. I have played many M rated games and watched many R films yet you don't see me going on a crazy loony spree.

I wish people would start blaming what the shooters do on them and then alone. Because say I put in your hands a gun. At the end of the day you have a choice to shoot it or not. I did not make you shoot it. It falls on the insane person them self and no one or no thing else.

Simon_Brezhnev2115d ago

You know the media wont blame movies. They advertise them 24/7. Until they start getting checks from game industry they will keep talking shit.

Tony-Red-Grave2115d ago

id still hit that >_>

POW right in the kisserr

Empire X2115d ago

Simon hit on the nail. It's all about money.

MacDonagh2115d ago

Their anxiety causes them to see only what they want to see and believe only what they wish to believe.

They are afraid of an emergent form of media stealing what's left of their audience.

I can't blame them.