Effects of TV Violence on Children

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When did teaching kids to kill become associated with a person's first amendment rights? In the wake of school shootings and concealed weapons being carried by students, many government agencies have begun to study the effects of violence on television as a prominent variable in childhood and adolescent aggressiveness. The prevalence of violence in television is rampant. It is as addictive as a drug to the children and adolescents, and is accomplishing two extreme reactions: a desensitization towards pain and suffering in the world, and instilling fear of the world as a dark, cold place. Although violence in all media has become a prominent issue, the focus has mainly been on television because it has had the most influence on the youth of the nation over the past 50 years. Abusive lyrics and overly violent films have taken some heat in more recent years, but not nearly as much as that of television. In the future, the medium of video games has been predicted to be more harmful than that of any other media influence, but there are not enough facts to support this hypothesis. The truth is that without the technology provided by the invention of the television video games would never have become a household commodity. The study of violence on the small screen has been ongoing since the 1950s (Committee on Public Education 1222). Even though the public lost sight of this debate, it gained momentum again in the late 1980s and 90s. Today, television has become a key socialization factor and dominates the life of children in urban and rural areas (Groebel 217). The period of socialization is a time in which children learn of their culture and how to interact with the world. Where this lesson was once taught by parents and schools, television has taken point. Violence is no longer restricted to R - rated movies that children have little chance of seeing, as their cartoons are brimming with violent acts. A study done on the choices of entertainment that parents and children make, depending on restrictive labels, proves that television programs carrying advisories of violence and objectionable behavior have bigger audiences than those that did not, and while parents made negative comments about programs that contained restrictions, the children were more likely to make positive comments (Cantor and Krcmar 39... ... middle of paper ... ...: 502. Academic Search Elite. EBSCROHost. Marist College Library, Poughkeepsie, NY. 26 October 2004 http://online.library.marist.edu. Odland, Jerry. "Television and Children." Childhood Education. 80.4. Summer 2004. 206B-206C. Proquest Research Library. Proquest Direct. Marist College Library, Poughkeepsie, NY. 2 November 2004 http://online.library.marist.edu. Stapleton, Stephanie. "Media Violence is Harmful to Kids . and to Public Health." American Medical News. 43.30. August 2000: 33-35. Proquest Research Library. Proquest Direct. Marist College Library, Poughkeepsie, NY. 2 November 2004 http://online.library.marist.edu. Walma van der Molen, Juliette H. "Violence and Suffering in Television News: Toward a Broader Conception of Harmful Television Content for Children." Pediatrics. 113.6. June 2004: 1771-1775. Academic Search Elite. EBSCROHost. Marist College Library, Poughkeepsie, NY. 26 October 2004 http://online.library.marist.edu. West, Diana. "All that Trash." Public Interest. 156. Summer 2004: 131-136. Proquest Research Library. Proquest Direct. Marist College Library, Poughkeepsie, NY. 2 November 2004 http://online.library.marist.edu.
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