One of the greatest questions that comes up after each tragic event in modern times – or indeed in any time – is why? What drove these men and women to commit such horrible wrongs? How and why can someone feel they have the right to take another’s life?
In the wake of the Boston tragedy, this week’s Mind the Gap Daily Post challenge is especially apt. Does media violence, fictional media violence, cause these sorts of tragedies? Is it a contributing factor?
Science is inconclusive. While groups like the American Psychological Association imply that the link between media violence and aggressive behavior is a sure thing, there is some debate over this. Independent analysis of published scholarly articles on the subject suggest that only about 200 studies have actually been conducted. (Paik and Comstock, 1994) These studies range from “confirming” the link, to being completely inconclusive.
So science is…
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