Published on November 18th, 2013 | by Sedgrid Lewis3
The Knockout Game: Real Life Grand Theft Auto
The knockout game aka The One Hitter Quitter is the deadly game that African American teenagers are playing across the nation. It is the true life version of the popular video game Grand Theft Auto (GTA). The knockout game involves a group of teenagers seeking out a helpless victim on the street to knockout with one punch. One of the teens from the group strikes the knockout blow to the victim within a matter of seconds which prevent the victim from protecting themselves. There have been numerous knockout assaults in New York, New Jersey, Saint Louis, Washington D.C., and other cities. The video below gives gruesome detail of the game.
The teens in the interview seem to be desensitized to the violence. Most of them are smiling and giggling during the interview. This seems normal and rational in their world. Video games such as GTA has desensitized teens to this level of violence. One could argue that teens playing the knockout game are mimicking the knockouts from GTA. A recent study indicates that teens that play mature rated violent games try to enact the violence from the characters in the game. Here is an example of a GTA knockout compilation. Look how similar the knockouts resemble the recent knockout game incidents.
Knockouts are one of the most hyped features of GTA 1-GTA5. There are dozens of YouTube videos teaching teens how to perfect their knockouts in the video game. GTA has come under pressure in the past due to teens acting out the video games scenes in real life. There have been several grand theft auto inspired murders over the years. Comedian and activist Bill Cosby linked GTA to a prep course for prison.
A Study Released by Pew Research indicates that black teens from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are playing games with video violence at large numbers. This is contributed to parents who don’t have a clue about the violence in these games. Parents are purchasing GTA for their underage teens while ignoring the mature labels. African American teens are playing games like GTA in large numbers. There are several African American criminal characters that are prominent in GTA. Criminal fictional video characters become role models for so many African American teens that lack role models in their families and community.
Parents will have to step up their monitoring of these games to ensure that teens do not mimic the behavior in GTA in real life. Play the games without the presence of your child to get a feel for the game and to determine the level of violence. Conduct Youtube searches to view other teens playing the games to determine if it is appropriate for your child. Visit gaming forums or public forums such as Reddit to see how the game is being discussed by other teens.
The community will also have to step up and resolve these deadly issues. The Toy Gun Buy Back program is a great example in St. Louis. Pastors are allowing parents to bring in violent video games and guns in exchange for non violent games, building sets, and other craft like toys. It’s these types of programs that will go a long way in stopping the violence.