How do kids get Grand Theft Auto? They ask their parents, duh
While politicians may complain about the very existence of certain games, and talking heads may call for stronger legislation, the truth is that the majority of children who play violent games do so because those games are purchased for them by their parents. The rating doesn't matter, the protests of the clerk at retail doesn't matter, common sense doesn't really matter. The kids want the game, and the parents will give it to them.
This is the number one thing I hear from my contacts at retail: Explaining ratings or the content of games to parents is an uphill fight, and for one every one receptive parent there are ten people who get annoyed and buy the game anyway.
I'm pretty comfortable saying children under the age of ten shouldn't be playing these games, but once the age goes up from there it becomes something that is best left to the discretion of each family. Still, the fact that games are provided to children by their parents is the reality, and it's rarely talked about in the mainstream press. This is the reality of the argument over violent content, and it's important to discuss.