Arnold Schwarzenegger defends movie violence

Movie action hero Arnold Schwarzenegger says that "sane people know the difference" between violence on the screen and in the real world. The former California governor is promoting a new film.

Arnold Schwarzenegger has waded into the movie violence debate a month after the Newtown, Conn., massacre, which has been linked to cinema shootouts.

The former California governor is promoting his new action film "The Last Stand" and insists people "know the difference" between movie and real-life violence.

Just days after Quentin Tarantino took offense to a British interviewer's line of questioning on the subject, Schwarzenegger is speaking out and targeting critics who believe violence on the big screen encourages people to become vigilantes and killers in real life.

He told USA Today, "Sane people know the difference. ... We have to separate the two. What's most important is that we, as a society, do a better job to prevent these sort of things. You cannot totally eliminate them. There will always be some crazy guy out there shooting. There are mentally ill people. The question is, what can we do?

"I wouldn't just go pointing at the NRA (National Rifle Association) that it's their fault. Or video games. Or gun manufacturers. The reality is, it's a very complex issue. ... It's mental illness. Insanity. If we don't address that, we don't have much."

But Schwarzenegger admitted he was left stunned when gunman Adam Lanza opened fire and killed 20 children at the Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14.

"You have kids, so you just immediately imagine what it would be like to have kids in that school," he said. "You cannot even relate to it when something like this happens. How horrific it is for the kids."


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