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Ryan DeJonghe - The Avid Reader

I didn't always read, but that changed in June of 2013. I dropped the unnecessary stuff and picked up the awesome stuff--like reading! I started posting my reviews on Amazon and within a few months rose to the top 0.1% of reviewers. My reviews then went to Goodreads, and now my blog (http://ryandejonghe.wordpress.com) and Twitter (@Ryan_Reads). If you are reading this, why not leave a comment or send me a note? I love talking to other folks about books and my reviews. Publishers and authors, feel free to drop me a note if you want me to review your book. I usually stick to mainstream publishing, but I'll consider anything. If I review your book, I’ll give you a fair and thorough review and let you know when the review goes live. You can reach me at dejonghes@gmail.com. Happy Reading!
Stop Teaching Our Kids To Kill, Revised and Updated Edition: A Call to Action Against TV, Movie, and Video Game Violence - Dave Grossman, Gloria Degaetano

According to this book, since Adam Lanza shot 26 children on December 14, 2012 there have been 44 school shootings. “One factor every one of them had in common was an obsession with media violence.” “Never in human history was there a multiple homicide committed by a juvenile against people in his or own school until 1975.”


Allow me to offer a case study: me. Last year I stopped playing video games, mainly to focus more on my parental responsibilities. As I look back on myself, and as others have voluntarily told me, my demeanor is calmer, more relaxed, and friendly. I recently witnessed to someone, “I’ve never had a calm, relaxed game of Call of Duty online.” Thrown controllers, fowl words spoken, fits of rage were all inevitable. Yes, I enjoyed violent movies, too. It all blended together. My appetite was insatiable. Today, though, none of that really appeals to me.


If these games affected me as an adult, how much more so would a child be affected? Yet, it is not uncommon for an 8-year-old to play a game that rewards extreme torture, killing, and prostitution. And, as this illustrates through studies, most parents do not consider a video game’s rating prior to purchase.


“Well over 1,000 studies…point overwhelmingly to a causal connection between media violence and aggressive behavior in some children.” Though the studies are clear, the authors also point out that the conscious mind thinks evidence leads to belief, but in reality the unconscious mind actually believes first and seeks supportive evidence. You’ll hear gamers and violent movie lovers justify and try to disprove the already conclusive evidence. One study, done in 2010, reviewed 130,295 participants; it concluded “violent video games increase aggressive thoughts, angry feelings, physiological arousal, and aggressive behavior.”


As the authors write, “It’s certainly not normal for so many kids to want to kill, harm, bully, or hurt others as they do today.” Violent media and violent video games are proven to lead to: 1. Increased aggression, 2. Increased fear, 3.                Desensitization to real-life and screen violence, and 4. Increased appetite for violence.


If you are a parent or guardian, please read this book. The authors also include many resources on how to prevent or filter violent content from getting to your vulnerable children. Together, we can turn the tide and make this world a more peaceful place.


Thank you to Harmony and Crown for sending this book to me for review.