The author of article, Parents should be able to control what kids watch, by Leland Yee who is a child psychologist and sponsored a California law, aimed at the prevention of the sale of violent video games to minors in 2005. However, the law was ruled out as incredible in 2011 by the Supreme Court as it was against the first amendment protection for the freedom of speech (Yee, 2005). He is also indicated as the Senator in the State of California.
The article was published in California as his arguments were viewed in the San Diego Union-Tribune in December 2010, as presented in the article. Also, San Diego is a city in California; additionally, in the first page, he says “here in California,” (Yee, 2005) and all his arguments are within a limited scope, California.
He is targeting the parents in California by persuading them to take note of content of video games as extremely violent video games have harmful effects on children. Additionally, though he is aware of the rights of parents to determine the kind of video games their children can watch as formulated by the law, he is trying to create awareness on the appropriate video games the parents can purchase for their children.
Logos of Argument
Yee’s arguments are based on the effects of video games from the general social perspective and research by credible sources like by the American Psychiatric Association, Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Psychological Association. He argues that these recognized bodies have concluded that “violent may contribute to aggressive behavior when watched over a period of time” (Yee, 2005). Thus the ultraviolent video games lead to behavioral changes.
Additionally, he supports his argument by referring to the global conclusion by scholars, researchers and scientists who have argued that “exposure to violent video games leads to an increased likelihood of an aggressive feelings, moral decay due to psychological desensitization to violence, aggressive thinking and decrease in pro-social behavior (Yee, 2005).
Therefore, it could have been from this perspective that Yee was compelled to formulate the law against extremely video games despite his awareness of the role of the society and the right of parents in providing their children with any video game (Yee, 2005).
The writer assumes that every parent, game industry or the judicial system will agree to his argument that extremely violent video games have negative impact on children. He assumes that his credentials as a child psychologist and research from other credible sources like American Psychologists Association will persuade people in believing that extremely violent video games influences behavior change (Yee, 2005). Additionally, he assumes parents usually purchase violent video games over shopping holiday season and that is why he begins by emphasizing on his period. He also assumes that all minors are capable of watching extremely violent video games hence he assumes that the justice system will rule in the favor of his petition. As a result, his writing does not follow any chronological order as the article has no introduction and the thesis statement appears in the middle and the before the conclusion of the article. Finally, though his information is supported by evidence from credible scholars or sources, he does effectively quote the sources. For instance, he says, “As a child Psychologist, I have reviewed the research. Exposure to…” (Yee, 2005). In this case, he should have quoted or used a connector like ‘that’.
Pathos of the Argument
The writer appeals to the audience by making his theme clear in the beginning of his writing as he appeals to the parents to consider the content of the video games they purchase for their children during holiday shopping. This implies that during the holidays, parents usually do a lot of shopping. Secondly, he gives a general overview of the situation in California. For instance, he says, “Here in California, we have …to protect children from harmful effects of …violent games” (Yee, 2005). Thirdly, he refers to research evidence from credible sources like findings from the American psychiatric association, Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Psychological association who have concluded that extremely violent video games increases the aggressive behaviors in adolescents who play such game (Yee, 2005).
He further gives a detailed account of the challenges he has faced from the video game industry in his fight against the production of extremely violent games and shows the case proceedings in the U.S. Supreme Court. Thus he is showing the magnitude of the case as it awaits judgment from the top justice system. He is also showing parents that availability of extremely violent games in the market is for the benefit of the violent game industry and not the children as any ban means the loss of profit to the industry.
He also shows his continuous struggle and efforts by joining other renowned bodies like the American Academy of Pediatrics in California and California Psychological association filing a petition to the High Court. Consequently, he gives his personal opinion on video games as he says, “As a child psychologist, I… and exposure to media violence significantly contributed to increased violence or aggression (Yee, 2005). Also, before concluding, he emphasizes on his thesis or theme statement of the society having rational, direct and compelling reason in restricting a minor from accessing violent video games” (Yee, 2005). He refers again to the summary of the conclusion by researchers, reference to the courts and the expectations from the court’s ruling that parents will be the determinants of the game, watched by children not the producers of such games.
The author is a credible source of information on the effects of extremely violent video games on children as his academic qualification, Ph.D. in child psychology, qualifies him as a credible source. He has also has a rich background in the field of child development as a result, in 2005, the writer authored a law intended to prohibit the sale of video games with extreme violent content to minors which received a lot of criticism from the game industry which then sued the state and the case is still in the U.S. Supreme Court.
Though from the journal it is not clear whether he is a member of psychological association, he joined the American Academy of Pediatrics in California and the California Psychological Association in submitting his petition on the banning of violent video games to minors to the high court (Yee, 2005). Thus this implies that his contributions in the field of child psychology are recognized by fellow colleagues in the field.
The writer succeeds in persuading the audience to believe that extremely violent video games should not be watched by minors and that parents have the right to decide the quality of video games to be watched by their children. Though his persuasion does not follow any chronological order, he approaches his arguments from a social setting by referring to the situation in California then supports it from credible sources like the American Psychological Association among other scholars on enlightening parents on the effects of such games on adolescents or minors.
Additionally, Yee is a credible source of persuading the justice system in implementing laws regulating the sale of extremely violent video games as he is a child psychologist and connected with credible organizations like the American Academy of Pediatrics in California and the California Psychological Association. His position, as a Senator, plays a crucial role in influencing the audience. He also justifies his argument from the conclusions he makes from the research he has done and repetition of the theme/thesis statement. Also, he is hopeful that the court will rule in the favor of his petition thus able to convince his targeted audience.
However, though he manages to convince parents on the negative effects of video games, he presents a one-sided view of video games might lead to a lot of debate by some minors, especially the adolescents. Additionally, his arguments do not follow a chronological order which might lead to questioning of the authenticity of the document.