We've all heard the numbers on the amount of television that children watch and the amount of violence that they're exposed to. In fact, sources that blame TV for children's conduct quote this kind of data profusely. American children and adolescents spend 22-28 hours per week viewing television more than any other activity except sleeping (_Effects of Television_). These kinds of facts are strewn about with the hopes of convincing the public that television is to blame for children's misbehaviors. Sources like these have one thing in common: They believe that if television disappeared, so would many of kids' aggressive behaviors. Though arguing whether or not television is indeed an influence on children is rather foolish, it is important to recognize what exactly is to blame for their wrongdoing; it is not television. TV shares no responsibility in the actions of children, parents do.
It is common to find in sociology and political science books the main influences on people's lives. These are usually parents, school, religion and more importantly, the media. These are indeed influences but nothing more. School definitely helps form the opinions and ideas a child will have just as religion does. The media also, depending on the amount of exposure that a child receives, has a big role. According to the _Media Influence_ web page, children will have watched seven years of television by age 70 (n. pg.). Yes, a lot of influence but, ultimately, parents have the most control in shaping the ideas and behaviors of children. These influences (parents or single ones) are the only ones responsible for the paths a child chooses in their lives. Parents are also the biggest influence du...
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... that is. Instead, parents must be on guard to teach the values of right and wrong. If this is done properly, children themselves could judge what they see on TV and make decisions as to whether they will karate chop their teachers or not.
_Fact about virtual violence_. American Medical Association. (1996): n. pag. Online. Internet. 7 March. 1998. Available: http://www.ama-assn.org/ad- com/releases/1996/vvfact.htm
_Media Influence on the Health of Adolescents: Positive Choices_. Andrews University. (1998): n. pag. Online. Internet. 7 March. 1998. Available: http://www.andrews.edu/IPA/education/adolescent_health/Media_Influence/
_The Effects of Television on a Child's Development_. University of Richmond: Department of Psychology. (1995): n. pag. Online. Internet. 7 March. 1998. Available: http://www.urich.edu/~psych/tvmain.html
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