John T. Gaffney Sr. Memorial Scholar at Northeastern University
Con to the question "Do Violent Video Games Contribute to Youth Violence?"
"It is not surprising that most schoolyard shooters and many adult mass murderers played violent video games in their spare time. To be sure, violent people are often attracted to violent entertainment, on TV, in film, or through game consoles. However, the ability to document a direct causal link indicating that consuming violent entertainment leads to violent behavior has eluded social science researchers for years...
To the extent that youngsters spend endless hours being entertained by violence says more about the lack of parental supervision and control. It isn't that the entertainment media are so powerful; it is that our other institutions - family, school, religion, and neighborhood - have grown weaker with respect to socializing children... Banning violent entertainment may be an easy fix, especially when policymakers are unwilling or unable to deal with the more fundamental causes of violence."
Cowritten with James Alan Fox, "Mass Shootings in America: Moving Beyond Newtown," Homicide Studies, Dec. 2013