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Years after the Sandy Hook shooting, promised research on guns and games isn't happening

A new report points out that Congress has failed for two years to approve the budget for research promised by the Obama administration, in the wake of the 2013 school shooting.

Christian Nutt, Contributor

August 14, 2015

1 Min Read

It's been over two years since the Newtown, Connecticut school shooting. 26 people, including 20 children were killed -- and yet the research promised in its wake that would attempt to get to the root the relationship between games and gun violence still has not begun.

President Obama called for the study in 2013, shortly after the attack.

This research has not begun, it turns out, because the $10 million budget for the study didn't make it into the Federal budget for 2014 or 2015. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which hopes to conduct the study, will reintroduce it to the 2016 Federal budget with the goal of finally getting funded.

A CDC spokesperson told Polygon that without that funding, the study won't happen.

Shortly after the shooting, representatives from the video game industry met with Vice President Joe Biden in Washington -- but after that symbolic conversation, we haven't seen much movement on the topic.

The Federal budget has been a contentious topic over the past few years; there was a shutdown of the government (and its services) in 2013, the year of the shooting, and gridlock has become a familiar fixture of Congress.

This news follows a statement from the American Psychological Association's Task Force on Violent Media, publicly affirming that playing violent video games is a consistent "risk factor" for both increased aggressive thoughts and behaviors (though not necessarily violence) and decreased empathy -- and ironically, called for further research into the topic.

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