Vice President Joe Biden reiterated on Thursday the White
House's interest in research into the impact of violent media, particularly
video games, on real-world gun violence, saying both he and the president felt
"very strongly" such research was necessary.
That came in the latest in a series of Google-sponsored Web
"Fireside" talks -- a takeoff of the Franklin Roosevelt radio
Fireside Chats -- with top administration officials (the president spoke after
last year's State of the Union speech, for example).
Asked by moderator Hari Sreenivasan from PBS NewsHour about earlier issues with
funding gun violence-related research, Biden said that there was "part of
the interest group population" that was "afraid of facts. Let the
facts lead where they will, and let the research be done."
He said that both he and the president feel very strongly
about the research portion of the initiative, "including with regard to
the entertainment industry."
He conceded there was no hard data on whether
"excessively violent video games in fact cause people to engage in antisocial
behavior, including using guns." But he suggested that as because the
research hadn't been done.
There is one study done, he said, that found that if kids
watched three to six hours of video games it can lead to aggressive behavior.
"They didn't make the next connection that that leads to violent behavior,
but there are no studies done." He said he had recommended to the president
that there be significant research done.
"Let CDC and the National Institutes of Health go out
and look at the pathology that's behind this if there is a pathology," he said.
"We shouldn't be afraid of the facts."