Sex, Drugs, & GTA: The Failure of Parents

Anthony Perez writes:

''What They Play, the self proclaimed "parents guide to video games," released the results of a survey yesterday revealing that parents found their children watching pornography and drinking beer as more acceptable than playing certain video games, namely Grand Theft Auto IV.

The ridiculousness of it all breaks down as such: 49% of respondents most feared their children smoking marijuana and 19% were concerned about them playing Grand Theft Auto, while only 16% were worried about exposure to pornography and 14% to their kids drinking alcohol.

Before I systematically dismember this absurdity – surely a byproduct of playing such violent games like Grand Theft Auto and Manhunt – let's hear what the Cheryl Olson, co-author of Grand Theft Childhood, had to say about the findings.

"To some parents, videogames are full of unknowable dangers. While researching for Grand Theft Childhood, parents we spoke with in focus groups often bemoaned the fact that they didn't know how to use game controls - and felt unequipped to supervise or limit video game play. Of course, parents don't want their children drinking alcohol, but that's a more familiar risk."

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theKiller3805d ago

if the child or teenage didnt watch porn and didnt drink and learn how to respect the elders and his family then i assure the stupid parents that a game like GTA4 will not turn their son unto killing monster!!

alcohol is the reason of billions of social problems such as divorce, sex with wrong people, rape, killings, addiction, accident etc the list is very long, if they rather let their children to go throw that risk and not to just play with some bits and pixels moving on flat screen then they deserve what they will get from their children!!

i play GTA and i never ever had in mind to copy it, only an insane person would copy it, and that insane person if he didnt copy GTA then will copy some other thriller movie or action movie!!

Pain3805d ago (Edited 3805d ago )


Parents to blame 60%
20% American TV........ Yo yo yo homie.
Alcohol 20% is the worst LEGAL drug on the Planet. mostly to blame. SLAP!! where my Dinner woman!

Fishy Fingers3805d ago

Whats the World coming to.

Luckily the next elder generation (namely us) will not hold computer games as such an unknown. Also in my experience people who participate in "focus groups" aren't the best to judge the attitude of the masses. Usually, they're a little "weird" if you like.

I could go for whatever that kids drinking though...

techwizz3805d ago

I studied communications research in college and focus groups are only as good as the moderator. Two different moderators can get completely different results.

techwizz3805d ago

Jesus, that was a good article. He ripped into the stupidity of those parents in that poll.

Some of my favorite parts:

"Marijuana doesn’t incite violence outside of the kind started during the trafficking and distribution of the drug itself, and that violence only exists because it’s illegal in the first place. Marijuana doesn’t cause tempers to flare or nerves to rattle like other more toxic drugs including cocaine. Hell, one joint study (no pun intended) in 2003 by the Justice and Education departments showed violence in schools actually went down at the same time that marijuana use went up.

Additionally, comedian Doug Benson mimicked the famous documentary “Super Size Me,” with the stoner equivalent called “Super High Me” where he got baked from sun up to sun down for 30 days. The impact on his health was nearly non-existent, perhaps because what he was smoking is essentially just a plant."

"Despite who is to blame, the effect of a lack of real knowledge about sex among teens helps prove my point that parents being more worried about Grand Theft frickin' Auto than whether their kids are drinking beer or watching porn – let alone doing both in the same night – is absolutely ridiculous.

After all, 19% of the nation has genital herpes. Teens – no doubt due to the failure of abstinence-only sex education programs – “believe drinking a cap of bleach will prevent HIV and a shot of Mountain Dew will stop pregnancy.” Oh, and the U.S. teen birth rate is still a problem, leaving a lot of teens with babies to raise well before they’ve reached proper levels of responsibility, both fiscally and in maturity.

And we’re more concerned about Grand Theft Auto? Really?"

Great stuff. Parents blow this stuff out of proportion. Games like GTA may have objectionable content but it's no worse than other forms of entertainment. What did the article say? There are something like 90 sexual scenes per hour of music videos and heavy TV viewing by teens shows they're much more likely to engage in sex?

Everyone needs to stop shielding children. It's a cold cruel world and trying to keep everything away from them isn't going to stop them from seeing it, it's only going to stop them from being prepared to handle it.

nirun3805d ago (Edited 3805d ago )

anybody here who smokes herb will know how much more open individuals are to new opinions and ideas. smokin the ganja has definitely shed light on a lot of issues for me that i would otherwise dismiss without much thought or consideration.

there's plenty of intellectuals that smoke weed, and again it's like bein gay. it's cool if you're gay, but don't openly talk about sodomy... similarly don't go braggin about how much weed you smoke and how cool you are for being a pothead.

ape0073805d ago

oh crap...

blaming videogames again

Mgoblue2013805d ago

I think that most parents get what their children go through because they went through the same things themselves when they were younger. Videogames are a completely new variable, however. But the results do seem to be the opposite of what I would expect. I would be much more concerned about alcohol in the hands of an irresponsible kid. This seems more like a blind study though without any particular reasons given, so I would trust more of an officially sanctioned survey.

techwizz3805d ago

The problem is that it was passed off as news on some sites, and in my opinion, What They Play has an obvious agenda. Still 3,000 is not a bad pool of people to work from.

AnthonyPerez3805d ago

I definitely agree with the comments, hell, I wrote the article.

Look, games may have some effect on kids, just as TV, music, and movies can have an effect on some kids, but to find porn and alcohol consumption among teens less objectionable than playing a game like Grand Theft Auto IV is preposterous.

I attack porn in this article as a way to show you can demonize everything, but even porn isn't all that bad if the person subjected to it can handle the content.

In fact, one of the biggest side effects to overexposure to porn is the inability to get sexually aroused by normal, everyday sexual encounters. It has been shown that some people, men in particular, have can have a hard time getting it up without dirty talk, costumes, etc if they watch porn or whack it too much.

But hey, masturbation has its upsides too (outside of the obvious)

Masturbation 'cuts cancer risk'

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