A plea...Who will stand between our young men and video games? To what end were they created? And by whom? How much money in a family budget is put toward this vast entertainment venue? And then, how much time, precious time, is spent toward it, and what, in its place, is lost?
We have already taken away from all our children the agrarian lifestyle. We have removed from them their being needed for our families to survive. We have taken away from them skills honed from caring for animals and property. We have taken away from them the benefits of a classical education and stuck them into a "conveyor belt" style learning environment. This, in turn, has taken them away much of the time from their families. And worse, we have taken away from them examples, in ourselves, of true lifelong learning.
I have two boys. One of them, I admit, struggles more with the notion of video games. He despises work for work's sake, reading for the sake of enjoyment and learning, and gets bored easily. My other son can play alone and keep himself busy with all kinds of projects, is willing to do his chores happily, and never asks me if he can play on the computer. Incidentally we don't own a Wii or any other playstation, but we do have a computer, his only way to play games. My son who struggles with always wanting to play computer games will read, work or go to great lengths if what he is doing is earning him computer play time. Bribery goes against my grain in all ways, so I find myself just saying "no." No whatever. No more.
My sister, while serving as Relief Society President in her ward, knew personally 3 young men who came home from the MTC because they could not stand the rigors of early rising and study there. They came home, more specifically, because they missed playing their games, and were bored.
Video games, I contest, ARE addictive. The effects on the minds of young men are somewhat visible in my generation, in a rising problem in fathers who become addicted to "gaming," along with the time consumed by many adults in social media such as Facebook.
But the true and far-reaching effects of video games is yet to be seen. Games for our children are more addictive with their levels, 3-d real look, subject matters and interactive abilities. My sons' friends don't like to come to my house to play because we "have nothing to do" here. They ask no less than 10 times in an hour to play on the computer. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. They leave and when I say no video games over there, they grunt and sigh and throw a fit. Or worse, my son goes against my wishes.
I talk to their friends' mothers. I explain that I prefer that my kids don't play video games. Some are supportive, others are not.
Mothers, if not us, then who? Who will stand between our sons and this plague of their minds, desires, and perspective? Someday, a sweet young lady is going to fall in love with my son. I can already feel her pain if he wants to game instead of be with her and his children. I can see so many consequences, spiraling down through the generations, if my son is not equipped to be a man.
Mothers, please. Stand with me. Do you have the courage to get rid of your games and take the ensuing battle and rage that will follow, and hold your ground? Do you think that I am eccentric? Do you not see the signs in your sons that I see in mine? Can you not look down the road and see that the first step down this road leads to the end of this road, and where that place is? Do you think it isn't that big of a deal?
Can you not see that even if they are not addicted, what is lost in the money and the time that could be spent elsewhere, and much greater things gained?
We are not a video game family. We have better things to do. This is what my sons will hear as often as they ask. I hope someday they will thank me.