Violence on my mind
By thorbahn3 12-11-2008 03:55 AM
This past autumn quarter I took Composition 1. A few of the assignments I wrote about included video games since that's what I like to write about of course. The following paper was assigned to be a reflection paper about some aspect of American life. My choice was on violence in the media. Enjoy,
1679 Composition 1
22nd October 2008
Violence on my mind.
Violence is in America’s genes. From the Revolutionary War, which won our
independence, to current events, violence is something that is always a constant
reminder in the back of our minds. Because of this our culture is reflected into our
imagination and is used as a tool to entertain the American masses.
As someone who has lived in America my entire life, I’ve often seen violent acts carried
out on a daily basis. Whether it’s a man brandishing an AK-47 after he’s pumped
multiple bullets into a group of innocent bystanders at a bank, or a cat getting hit on the
head with a hammer, I see it everyday. Sure, the group of bystanders is really just a
group of extras painted in a blood like substance and the cat in question is in actuality
a cartoon character being struck by a cartoon mouse, but what kind of effect does this
have on me?
As a child, I witnessed an ungodly amount of violence. The internet was still in
its infancy, so I’d often become entertained from movies, video games, and TV.
My visits to the local video store as a child were so frequent that I learned how to spell
my last name because the clerk would ask my parents how to spell our long and often
mispronounced surname. The movies we’d take home often showed me things
I’d never thought of beforehand, for example, men fighting with swords made of light, a
tyrannosaurus rex eating the flesh of a human, and a millionaire dressed like a bat
punching a clown. The movies both enlightened my muse, and permanently changed my
view of the world at the same time making for potent combination. If I had lived in
any other country, my imagination might not be as potent as it is today since I doubt I’d
want to see foreign movies, much like how I often don’t see movies from other countries.
Violence depicted on television also had a deep impact on my young mind. I
remember watching children’s shows like “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” and “Spider-
Man” and thinking about how cool it is they’re out there protecting the world.
Thinking back, I don’t remember the hero actually trying to resolve the problem before
going in and bashing the villain repeatedly until he/she gave up. Meanwhile at night,
shows like “Cops”, "Law and Order”, and “NYPD Blue” showed violence in a disturbing and
graphic manner. Despite this, I often learned that crime truly doesn’t pay in the end, a
lesson I might have not learned if I wasn’t an American, but was the violence really worth
the high cost of exposing yourself to such crimes?
“Mortal Kombat“, an American made video game released during my youth, had fighters
punch, kick, and throw objects at each other was very controversial. The game wasn’t
controversial because of that however; instead it was because of maneuvers players could
use to finish off opponents called fatalities. Right before you won the fight, the player
would press a specific pattern of buttons and the fighter would do horrible things to the
other player, such as ripping his/her spinal cord out of their body, or engulf
the opponent in flames leaving only bones behind. Other games being condemned at
the time were “Lethal Enforcers“; a game in which you shoot criminals with a light gun, “Night Trap“;
where the goal was to save a group of teenage girls from vampire zombies, and “Doom”;
a 3D adventure where one man is pitted against an army of demons on Mars. Although
our American government was morally apposed to them, our countries founding laws
protected them thanks to freedom of speech. If any other country had been under the same
amount of pressure, I doubt we’d still have that kind of freedom.
During my childhood I got to play every single video game title that was deemed a
menace. A great example I can still recall is the time I received “Doom” for Christmas.
My brother turned off the lights so that the TV’s dim glow was the only thing
that surrounded us in complete darkness. As I walked around the three dimensional
realm, monsters appeared around corners, hidden doorways, and even from behind. The
deep growl you heard before any of these encounters was enough to give me goose
bumps. The experience of making my way through each dungeon was both thrilling and
terrifying at the same time because you never knew what to expect. I’ve often thought
about what other children around the world were missing because the game was illegal
where they lived or they couldn’t afford the technology needed to play.
Is violence in the media truly a bad thing? Well consider this: as someone who has
absorbed all this entertainment as both a child and an adult, I’ve never committed a crime.
I don’t drink, I don’t get into fights, I don’t steal, I don’t get speeding tickets, I don’t do anything illegal. Perhaps it’s because the thought of violence is always in the back of my mind.
|Comments (Total Comments: 2)|
|DesertEagleXIX - 12-11-2008, 11:26 AM|
|thorbahn3 - 12-11-2008, 01:34 PM|
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