U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller is calling on the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a comprehensive study of the effects of violent video games and other violent media programming on kids.

He was at the Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center in Martinsburg on Monday afternoon to talk about the effort with concerned parents, teachers, mental health experts, representatives from the video game industry and others.

Common Sense Media President and CEO Jim Steyer was one of the people who attended the hearing.  “We believe that that research will just reinforce the idea that there is a link (between violent media and violent behavior),” he said.

“That matters because we’re all concerned about this.”

His group is a national organization focused on improving the media lives of kids and families.  Steyer says there has to be some accountability when it comes to, what he calls, the correlation between violent media content and violent behavior.

“The industry has a responsibility to (a) voluntarily limit violent content and (b) stop marketing it to children,” Steyer said on Monday’s MetroNews Talkline.

Sen. Rockefeller, the Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, has introduced The Violent Content Research Act of 2013 on Capitol Hill.

On Tuesday, he was scheduled to be in Morgantown to talk about protecting kids online during a hearing at West Virginia University’s Erickson Alumni Center.

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  • John

    Well said Brian! There is no personal responsibility in this country any more. It's always someone else's fault or job. It can't be the parent's fault little Johnny murdered 16 people. It's the video game or the gun or the .............! Now, the idiot Jay Rockefeller, whose never had a job, is going to spend untold amounts of our money to find out what's wrong with video games. They shouldn't be available, that's what's wrong with them. If people had any morals, there wouldn't be a market for them and they would go away. It isn't just kids who shouldn't be playing some of these games. Nobody should. They are disgusting. But we don't need a study or a law to tell us that. We need a society that goes back to it roots and morals and just stops buying them. Then, we all sit down and have dinner with our wife and children and talk to them and spend time with them. Problem solved!

  • Michael

    I have to agree with Brian, it's a parenting issue. I play video games online and I have heard the worse profanity from children playing on x-box live. I never spoke that way as a child and don't now. It's up to parents to supervise there children. The kids today have no respect. When I did something wrong, I got my a** busted. Now, if you even yell at your kid, you have to worry about someone calling CPS on you.

  • jethro

    when i was growing up there were several groups or classification of kids, you had the smart kids , the athletic kids , the average kids and the druggies and hoodlums . there were certain kids your parents didnt want you to hang around with. today there are alot more of the latter. its hard to find kids that arent impacted or involved in some way with drugs whether it be marijuana or heroin
    just my observation

  • Keefe

    I agree with Brian on this. I have 5 kids who live next door always a menace to the neighbors. Mother yells at them but never makes them pay the consequences for their actions. My prediction is more future criminal activity as they get older.I love those kids but I feel sad they are receiving no discipline at home. I told her a nice Hickory switch may curtail their bad behavior. She looked away and did not say a word.

  • Brian

    This is a parenting issue. My parents had no problem telling me they didn't care what my friends had or did. They made decisions based on what they thought was right, and they were strong enough to deal with my disappointment and complaining. You better believe that if that complaining went beyond about a sentence, there was a punishment for that too.

    Parents today are lazy and weak. They don't want to spend the time and energy to supervise their children, and they not only allow a bunch whining and crying, but they cave in to it.

    The state of parenting in this country is absolutely pathetic. I see very few children in this world who are as fortunate as I in that regard. I grew up with much less possessions than my parents could afford to give me (and they made sure I knew it), and I had much more strict rules that were consistently enforced. My parents worked at being parents, and I appreciate them for it.

    More on point, I do believe these games are very detrimental to children, and therefore bad for society. Parents should not buy these games for their children, nor should they allow them to play such games anywhere. However, they don't have the sense to know that, the courage or strength to tell their children that, and certainly not the energy and dedication to verify that their rules are being followed.

  • DWL

    Remind me which “state” the carpetbagger represents? The state of confusion, disillusion, or vegetative? Or is it all 3?