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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

October 30, 2014 at 7:05 AM

Marysville school shooting: Violent media are causing violence

I grew up in the 1950s and ’60s in small towns where hunting and shooting were common. Most families had one or more high-powered rifles, a shotgun, a pistol and often more. Most guns were not locked up. Kids could easily get their hands on plenty of firepower. But my classmates and I didn’t run amuck with weaponry.

What’s different today? Are today’s kids crazier? Older people have always thought kids were crazy, but I doubt if today’s kids are worse.  Are today’s parents bad? All generations have included some parents who were clueless, absent or abusive, and today’s parents are no worse.

But the following are different today: TV and movies are more violent, and the violence is gory and in your face. That desensitizes viewers, affecting some people in undesirable ways. Computer and video games, which didn’t exist when I was young, draw the players in as participants in violence. Endless sensational news coverage of violent events glorifies those events and entices copycats. When kids are subjected to such influences, a small number lose their way.

As a first step, curtailing the sensational news coverage of mass shootings would reduce the number of shootings.

Carl Wilson, Kirkland

Comments | More in Marysville-Pilchuck High School school shootings | Topics: Carl Wilson, gun control, gun violence

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