Want proof that the maddening campaign to make video games a scapegoat for gun violence is working? Just check out these poll results where the vast majority of people essentially say that video games are scarier than guns.
At first blush, the latest press release from Raleigh-based firm Public Policy Polling seems like a typical suite of horse-race forecasting focused on the 2016 presidential race. It’s got questions about potential candidates Marc Rubio and Hilary Clinton, and asks whether people have favourable or unfavorable opinions on a slew of other politicians.
But the only question that veers into cultural territory is one focused on video games.
What do you think is a bigger safety threat in America: guns or violent video games?
Video games 67%
Not sure 19%
These results came from an automated telephone interviews of 800 people across the United States, so there’s nothing by way of anecdotal explanation for the answers. Without being able to hear any of the reasoning, the disparity between those percentages is even more stunning. Really, America? Video games are more a safety threat than guns?! News flash: It’s a lot harder to use a game to cause bodily harm than it is to use a gun. This seems to indicate that the dunderheaded remarks some politicians and pundits make about video games are finding fertile ground in some folks’ minds, even though there’s no evidence of a video games-beget-violence connection.
Update: As pointed out by readers, 72 per cent of respondents to that poll are older than 45. Also, only Republican voters were asked the video games question, which might explain these breakdowns.
Clinton, Rubio lead primary contests [Public Policy Polling, via Political Wire — thanks Jason!]