When Vice President Joe Biden met with film, television, cable, and video industry lobbyists to discuss efforts to curb gun violence, some thought that new ideas were sure to emerge from the dialogue.
Little came of the discussions though, and a possibility exists that the power players knew in advance that some kind of a fix was in. As representatives of the entertainment industry arrived at the White House, Hollywood hands were noticeably empty of any new proposals.
President Obama had put forth a promise for a broad dialogue and far-reaching response to the gun violence issue. However, despite Obama’s subsequent rolling out of 23 executive actions, which were purportedly intended to address school shootings, the president instead skirted the Hollywood component of the gun violence problem.
Hollywood generated plenty of campaign money during the last election cycle for Obama’s re-election effort. The entertainment industry lobby is among Washington, D.C.’s biggest spenders, having outspent the NRA by 20 to 1.
Tinseltown’s chief lobbyist, a.k.a. the head of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), happens to be former Sen. Chris Dodd, who hails from Connecticut, the same state in which the terrible Newtown tragedy occurred.
With regard to the films containing violent content, which Hollywood so copiously churns out, Obama in this latest spectacle chose merely to vote “present.” Still, the current slate of popular films is so saturated with violent scenes it is difficult to fathom the president’s lack of attention to the gun-violence-related entertainment component.
As an example, Quentin Tarantino's film, “Django Unchained,” includes 19 bloody violent scenes and has 69 victims of violence, while Sly Stallone’s latest, the title of which is “Bullet to the Head,” manages to assault at hello.
The president has asked Congress to fund research on the effects of violent video games. Speaking as a true community organizer, Obama’s suggestion of such a study serves no useful purpose other than to serve as a public relations ploy for a White House with an agenda, which also grants special considerations for FOB’s (Friends of Barack’s).
Buttressing the argument that the study suggestion is a vapid one, a sizable body of research, which establishes the relationship between media violence and aggressive behavior, already exists, including a thorough examination into the desensitization of individuals to violence.
The studies have been so compelling that the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Psychological Association, and American Psychiatric Association have seen fit to definitively state that exposure to violent media may potentially pose a danger to children and teens.
Violent forms of video games provide players with a sort of immersive instruction in the inhuman act of killing, minus the general attendant human reactions of hesitation, compassion, and remorse.
In the sickest of ways, they are highly effective in their instructive capability. Recent perpetrators of school massacres were found to have engaged in violent video game fare, including Sandy Hook murderer Adam Lanza, Heath High School shooter Michael Carneal, and Columbine killers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold.
To say that the president missed an opportunity would be the understatement of a generation.
James Hirsen, J.D., M.A., in media psychology, is a New York Times best-selling author, media analyst, and law professor. Visit Newsmax.TV Hollywood. Read more reports from James Hirsen — Click Here Now.
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