Voluntarily Giving Up Violent Video Games

Friday, December 21, 2012

A letter to my child’s principal,

My heart is so heavy regarding the Connecticut tragedies that I felt I would just reach out. I have talked at length with my children and we’ve discussed that there is no one solution to this problem of random acts of violence.  We’ve talked about the multifactorial problem including mental illness, ease of obtaining weapons, violent video game desensitization, etc.  I fully understand the extremes of opinions in this case.  Tragedy brings out strong emotions.  

My son doesn’t have Nintendo, Xbox, or wii with violent games.  He doesn’t have the most violent of the video games on his iPad.  He does, however, have a few games that involve guns.  Please understand that I am not anti-gun. Nor am I a gun advocate.

It may seem inconsequential, but I have asked him to voluntarily give up those games, in honor of those innocent children.  He was more than willing to do so.  He has plenty of other sports games, etc. to play on the time he is allowed on his computer.  

I wonder if we asked the kids at school, if they would be willing to do the same.  All, of course, voluntarily. Again, please understand that I believe asking for voluntary participation is the key.  You can’t force compassion or awareness. Law and force do not change the heart. I think it comes from one on one talks from parents and strong role models like yourself.  I don’t think a massive announcement would work. It needs to come from a place of tenderness for the lost lives.

It is just a small act of kindness that the children can actually ‘do’ to show they understand on some level that pretending to realistically assassinate others is not the best use of their time on this earth. If giving it up entirely seems drastic, maybe they could dedicate a violent video game free day a week and substitute the time with acts of kindness, community service, or tutoring. I do understand that the children do not play these games at school and it is fully under parental control.  I’m only asking for support from the strong role models at school. I think it would be amazing for our children to take a stand to honor the lost lives.  

Thank you for considering this voluntary action. While we are all hugging our children a little tighter this holiday season, maybe we can whisper in their ears as well.

Carlene Vital
Chattanooga

General Mills Wildflower Seed Giveaway More Hypocritical Than Glorious

I am writing in reply to Roy Exum's opinion piece from March 21, entitled "Bring the Bees Back." I agree with Mr. Exum that it’s a wonderful idea to plant wildflower seeds and do everything we can to save the bee population, but I take issue with categorizing the General Mills program as a “glorious campaign.” The truth is that unless the giant multinational food and agribusiness ... (click for more)

What Is Really The Issue?

The events of recent days has me repeatedly asking, what is really the issue here? Let's review, in recent days (weeks actually) we have been presented with the news of the teacher in Columbia, Tn. who kidnapped a 15-year-old girl from his school and is still at-large. There has been much speculation about the girl's complicity in her sex abuse/kidnapping. Is this truly being ... (click for more)

Boyd Says $4.1 Million In County Budget Cuts Would Yield $43.1 Million For School Projects; Proposes That CSLA Move To Dalewood

County Commission Finance Chairman Tim Boyd on Wednesday recommended $4.1 million in county budget cuts, which he said would provide bond funds for $43,150,000 in county school projects. He recommended that $250,000 of the money from the cuts go to relocating Chattanooga School for the Liberal Arts (CSLA) to Dalewood Middle School. He said Dalewood students could move to a portion ... (click for more)

Police Shoot And Kill Sheriff's Office Employee After Disorder At Brainerd Home; 2 Off-Duty City Officers Were At Scene Of Altercation Where Shot Was Fired

Chattanooga Police responded to an altercation at a house in Brainerd early Wednesday morning and wound up shooting and killing an armed man, who is an employee of the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office. Police said two off-duty Chattanooga Police officers were at the scene of the disorder in the 300 block of Shawnee Trail. A shot was fired before officers arrived at 1:26 a.m. ... (click for more)

Red Bank Stays Unbeaten With Romp Over Hixson

Mandi Munn has been around a lot of Red Bank softball in her life, both as a player and now as the head coach for the Lionettes, but she probably hasn’t been involved with many games like the one her team played at home Tuesday afternoon. Facing the Hixson Lady Wildcats in a District 6-AA contest, the Lionettes more than batted around in three of their four at-bats and they took ... (click for more)

Bradley Holds Off Ooltewah 3-2 In District 5-3A Play

Before this season Bradley Central’s Colton Cross had not pitched since the eighth grade. Now, the senior right-hander has found his niche as a reliever with the Bears’ baseball team. That's in addition to being the Bears' starting second baseman. Cross entered Tuesday’s District 5-3A game against Ooltewah in the seventh with Bradley nursing a shaky one-run lead. ... (click for more)