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Rep. Wolf: Media Should Be Bigger Part of Violence Conversation

Virginia congressman take to floor to push "honest discussion about media violence - TV, movies and video games." 2/28/2013 9:29 AM Eastern

Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.), a longtime critic of media violence, particularly video games, took to the House floor during general speeches Thursday to call on the President to get the media more involved in the solution to gun violence.

His latest interest was sparked by the Sandy Hook school shootings (the Virginia Tech school shooter lived in his district).

In arguing against focusing on guns, Wolf said that he had concerns about what he called the "lack of discussion" about mental health issues and "violent media and the role they play in mass shootings." He called it irresponsible to focus only on shooting.

He focused mostly on violent video games, but did not stop there. "I am not naïve enough to think that video game violence is the only issue here. We need to have an honest discussion about media violence - TV, movies and video games.
Wolf did not say access to guns should be excluded from the conversation, only that those other factors be more prominent.

"It is easy for the president to go after the NRA - he doesn't support them and they don't support him," he said on the House floor. "But will the president ever ask the entertainment industry to get involved or will he continue to be silent? While media violence is not the only factor of mass violence, it is one of the easiest factors to change and it needs to be addressed, in addition to looking at access to firearms and mental health."

Media trade groups this week launched a campaign to promote the TV and Movie ratings system. Wolf put in a plug for a universal rating on all media. "The current rating system is confusing to parents, for example, there is R for movies, TV-MA for TV and FV for "fantasy violence" in video games," he said.

 

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