Violence is very wide spread in society today and is growing at an alarming rate amongour children. Everyday we seem to hear of children beating on one another, ganging upon the elderly, invading homes, and even murdering people. One has to question howmuch effect different sorts of media have on our children. From the time we are veryyoung we can be exposed to seeing and hearing horrible acts of violence on the televisionand radio, and through video games. Sadly, I believe this is where it all starts – in thecomfort of our own homes. Over and over again children watch violent programs andplay video games with the goal of killing others. Eventually many of them find it amusingand enjoyable to see others being hurt and killed. Parents, in general, are not protectingtheir kids from this invasion of media violence.
Many children laugh at violence and think it’s funny to hurt others. According toDavid Grossman, a former psychology professor and author of a Pulitzer-nominated bookon the psychology of violence, the most dangerous of all media is that which teaches thechild to laugh. “ Once you get beyond the early age where kids are stunned andmesmerized by TV and can’t tell the difference between fantasy and reality, you find theybegin to laugh at the violence”. (Grierson, Adbusters 2) Children who view a lot oftelevision become hardened to violence. “ Media violence systematically brutalizes anddesensitizes its recruits”.(Grierson, Adbusters 1) Children are entertained by violence sooften on television that they no longer find it offensive. Watching programs that glorifyviolence, such as “Monday Night Wrestling”, give children the impression that hurtingothers is amusing. “Even though young children have some understanding of what itmeans to pretend, they are developmentally unable to distinguish clearly between fantasyand reality.” (Grierson, Adbusters 1)
"Children are among the greatest of imitators... ." The debate over media violence has eluded definitive answers for more then three decades. At first glance, the debate is dominated by one question. Whether or not media violence causes real life violence and whether or not it has a negative effect of the modern day Canadian family.Closer examination reveals a political battle. On one hand, there ...
Children not only commit acts of violence but they actually enjoy it. They areconditioned to enjoy violence from an early age, often while curled up on the living roomcouch. “Children watch vivid pictures of human suffering and death, and they learn toassociate it with their favorite soft drink and candy bar”. (Grierson, Adbusters 2) Manytimes over, disgusting scenes are viewed with Mom and Dad during family times together. “TV violence does not kill you. It destroys your violence immune system and conditionsyou to derive pleasure from destruction.” (Grierson, Adbusters 2) Kids who play videogames get a sense of pleasure when they “kill the enemy” and win the game. Grossman,who spent time as a lieutenant-colonel in the army states that something psychologists call“classical conditioning” can take place in our children when they act out violently, such asin video games, and are rewarded for it, as they are by winning the game. He callsclassical conditioning “the forced association of an emotional state with an action-to trainits soldiers not only to kill but to like it”. (Grierson, Adbusters 1)
Are parents doing enough to protect their children from media violence? Theyprovide comfortable homes for their children. Most parents also provide televisions,stereos and video games. Myriam Miedzian, a social philosopher, insists, “By the timeAmerican kids are 18 years old they have watched 26,000 murders on television alone….Itis contrary to common sense and research to think you can create such a culture and nothave any effects.” (Benson/Roehlkepartain Youth Violence 1) Even parents who try tolimit their kids’ TV viewing by installing a V-chip, are leaving the decision of whichprograms are watched in the hands of the networks and “they are doing a horrendous jobof it”. (Grierson, Adbusters 5) Parents seem to be much better judges of what and howmuch television their children should watch. Video games and TV are often used asbabysitters for parents who are busy, tired or lazy. Instead of being active and creative,children are entertained by the media. “We have powerful data, linking TV-viewing withobesity in kids…We have some of the smartest, most creative people in the nation beingpaid vast sums of money to convince your child to eat sugary cereal.” (Grierson,Adbusters 5)
When you are a child, who takes care of you? Now, the cost of living is so high that many people under age twenty-five are moving back in with their parents. Young people are getting married later now than they used to. The average age for a woman to get married is about twenty-four, and for a man twenty-six. Newly married couples often postpone having children while they are establishing careers. ...
Violence has escalated amongst our young people to the point that they find itamusing and enjoyable to see and take part in acts of violence. Parents have let the mediainvade their homes so that violent programs and games are taken for granted and seen asan acceptable form of entertainment. Parents, in general, need to wake up and realize thatit could be their children who are someday beating others, invading people’s homes andmurdering, all because they have been exposed to violence day in and day out through themedia. If parents care and want to raise kids with good morals, they must do it themselves rather than expecting television and other forms of media entertainment to raise theirchildren for them. Their childrens’ exposure to the media should be limited and carefullymonitored. This would be a step in the right direction to raising loving, non-violentchildren.