What is escapism? No, it isn't the talent of solving escape rooms with great speed. In fact, escapism, when critically analyzed, is the void of anything positive and is simply a coping mechanism for the ugly reality that surrounds individuals in denial. For example, children in a family that constantly fight and is placed in an economically disadvantaged situation would draw pictures of their family smiling in a large house, with a big yard, and cars. In this case, the children are using drawing to escape from the harsh realities they live in.
Escapism is generally focused on children because of that specific example. It is a mechanism used by abused children to cope. But I believe that adults use escapism in a countless number of ways. These could include not only video games but comedy, sports, reading, and the like.
Video games, however, are of particular interest because unfortunately, the rising generations of our time are staring at a screen more than at a book, but there is a good reason as to why.
Our world is in shambles. This is not a political statement, but one of reality. Something that is escapism's bane, but also its reason for existence. People are starving, political sides are fighting, and all the while everyday people suffer emotionally, morally, and financially.
I will say that with all of our flaws, the modern generation is not completely stupid. They realize this and almost all of the people that I have talked to do not want to deal with it. If you ask someone from the ages of eighteen to twenty-four what their political views are the majority of the time they will say "I don't really care," or they will spit out something they heard on the news.
I believe this is because we are overwhelmed. The world has never been a place of peace. Parts of it, of course, will remain peaceful, but as a whole, the world, nature, and humans very existence depend upon violence to survive and evolve. However, I digress.
The males of my generation were not taught to deal with issues head-on, confront people, and stare conflict in the face. I've seen it in all of my years of living, and continue to see how dwindling the group of individuals and particularly males are, that are not afraid of true conflict. This is not their fault; it is actually the fault of their parents, but it makes a great impact on their lives and the lives of those around them.
Why males, you may ask. Studies show that about 65% of individuals who play video games regularly are males. This is important because, in a world that does not take shit from anyone, males who are not willing to face conflict will have to find a sense of dominance elsewhere while subsequently ignoring the issues of our time.
This elsewhere is in video games. I have seen it on personal accounts, and if one simply enters into a public arena of gaming, they will see that children from ages of 12 up into adults will speak in a harassing tone to others. I am willing to bet that in person the adults will not speak to anyone like that in person, and this is above all else, sad.
Video games provide a reality that books, movies, and art could not do if they were all combined together. This is not only addictive to the right type of person but it also attracts those who seek to escape reality. Whether this is their failing grades in college or their denial of a poor personality. Video games allow an individual to completely forget about everything around them and focus on an alternative place that does not resemble their own.
This is an outcry more than anything. I think it is time that the males of my generation rise up and become men. Oh yeah, get offended about toxic masculinity all you want, but that is for another article. We hide behind our screens and avoid the realities we are stuck in, regardless of how many hours we play. Everything has its place in life but, if taken too far, can and have proven tragic.
We're stuck here on this earth, with these people and situations, and there is nothing that is to be done about it. Escapism will not help us now.