Poll: Most Americans Believe Media Violence Contributes to Real Violence
Majority say stricter gun laws would not make them feel safer
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 3/4/2013 12:21:00 PM
Corrected headline and first paragraph on March 5 at 12:30 p.m. ET
According to a just-released Vanity Fair/60 Minutes poll, the "vast majority" of American adults polled "agree violent games and films contribute to violence in society," while most believe stricter gun laws would not make most people feel safer.
According to the poll, 80% of respondents said they believed depictions of violence in popular culture -- some "movies and video games" -- contribute to violence in society. Of those, 45% said it contributed a lot, while another 35% said it contributed "some."
Only 6% of said they thought it did not contribute to real-world violence.
Women were much more likely to say entertainment violence contributed a lot (55%) than were men (35%).
The president has directed new studies on the correlation, and Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W. Va.), chair of the Senate Commerce Committee has introduced legislation to conduct even more studies, and has made the issue a priority in his committee for this Congress.
As to stricter gun laws, 65% said that either they would make no difference (45%) or actually make them feel less safe (20%), according to the study.
The study was conducted Jan. 24-27. It was a random poll of 1,052 adults nationwide. The margin of error was plus or minus three points.
In the wake of the Sandy Hook schools shootings, the entertainment industry, through the major trade groups, has volunteered to be part of the conversation about the impact of entertainment violence on real violence.
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