Violence, Television, And Children Essay, Research Paper
Television violence causes destructive behavior in children, however; television can be a powerful influence to young viewers in our society. Unfortunately, much of today’s television programming are very violent. Many researchers like scientists, pediatricians, and child researchers in many countries have studied to find out what it is about television violence that makes it such a big affect on the way kids act and behave. Sometimes, children think that is a normal thing in our real life, by watching only a single violent program, which can increase aggressiveness on children and become violent, aggressive, and vicious.
Usually, U.S. children begin watching television at a very early age, sometimes as early as six months, and are eager viewers by the time that they are two or three years. The amount of time that children spend watching television is very interesting because like four hours a day, 28 hours a week, by the time they graduate from high school, children spend more time watching TV than any other activity, besides sleeping.
However, children that watch many programs in which violence is very real, parents show no affinity toward violence and that is why the child think that violence is not bad. Normally children cannot tell the differences between real and unreal, that is why young viewers are unable to realize that when a character attacks someone it is real and should not be imitated from them. Also, when television shows that allow the character who commits the crime they do not receive punishment, it teaches children that it is fine to commit a crime because there won’t be punishment and kids feel that if they do the same thing as the character from the program who committed the crime they will be a hero, that is why many of the programs that children watch send the message that a conflict always involves a winner and a loser.
The media in general reduces the different values of life, also makes violence and even death, which seem funny and unreal that children do not learn to respect themselves and in general, because of the violent television that is influencing them even more. If parents ignore or approve of their child’s aggressive behavior, or if they lose control too easily themselves, a TV control plan will not help at all. In the same way, if parents themselves show violent behavior, they serve as role models for their children too.
However, parents should use major measures to prevent harmful effects from television, radio, and the Internet in other areas such as racial or sexual stereotyping. “If you see the amount of time that children watch TV, should be moderated, because it keeps children from other, more beneficial activities such as reading and playing safe games with friends,” (Mander, 1978, p.258).
But, parents can also use several measures to prevent harmful effects from television in other areas such as racial or sexual stereotyping and other types of violence on television. If parents have serious difficulties setting limits for their children, or have current concerns about how their child is reacting to television, they should contact a child and adolescent psychiatrist for any questions that they might have about their child behavior.
Once parents are aware of the influence that television violence has on their children, parents can do is find out what their children are watching, if it is inappropriate they can turn off and explain their children the reason why the set is being turned off. But also, parents should evaluate and watch the programs from television before allowing children to watch them or parents should ask their children about what they are watching and what part of the program they like the most and if the parent thinks that is bad for them, they should explain the child the reason that the child should stop watching that show or cartoon.
However, 47% of violent television programs show the victim going unharmed, especially in many cartoons. Many cartoons are the most that contain violence, many of the cartoons show bowled over by another character and they get back up without being harmed and children begin to believe that violence doesn’t really hurt others.
Still, children see many actors and the stories that is not true at all, but on the other hand, young viewers still believe in the Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, and Santa Claus which all it seems to pretend that is magic and not real in life.
Many cartoons that are corrupted are intended for comic effect, cute graphics, and most of them are colorful, and all of them are with music, whose influence on children’s view and that is why they like the programs that they are watching. “It may desensitize kids so much they think it’s OK and no big deal for somebody to be smacked in the head with a hammer,” (Quill, 1978, p.158). Viewers, however; could learn aggressive attitudes and behavior from watching violence, become desensitized to the seriousness of violence, and become afraid of becoming a victim of real life violence.
Since many researchers have found that 60% of sampled programs which contained violent scenes and would increase the negative effects on viewers, especially on young children. More than one third of violent scenes on television featured bad actors and characters who were never punished, and most of them showed no guilt or penalty at the time violence occurred, most of scenes that are violent shows humor, accidents, violent incidents and sexuality; that is why there is more disturbing for young viewers that violence was prepared by attractive hero role models and can destroy a child’s mind.
This issue of violence, which media have the greatest impact on many people is not only on television, many children today may be more influenced by video games and computer games at home and they can become less sensitive and most of them who watch the violent shows, are most likely to hit out at their playmates and argue.I.
Young children do not process information in the same way as adults do. For example, children between the ages of 6 and 10 may believe that most of what they see on television is true to life. Since they watch a lot of television, this makes them mostly weak to the negative effects of television.
But television is not always a negative influence to young viewers, there is a strong evidence that children’s shows that were developed to teach educational and social skills which can help children learn well. In fact, research suggests that the positive effects of educational children’s shows probably be more important than the negative effects of publicity to television’s violence. “This instrument can teach, it can illuminate; yes, and it can even inspire. But it can do so only to the extent that humans are determined to use it to those ends. Other- wise it is merely lights and wires in a box.” (Chen, p.33)
Some programs combine entertainment and education to help children learn to identify characters, shapes and colors, sequence numbers and letters, practice beginning phonics skills, learn the vocabulary and sounds of foreign languages, and a lot more. Unfortunately, a great deal of children’s programming does not teach children what most parents and teachers want them to learn, that is why these programs are mostly designed for young viewers like children, such as cartoons, different types of shows which are the most violent of all programming.
The fact that television’s programs have many messages that are constructed in teaching children the difference between television’s fantasy and reality. The problem is whether or not children understand that most of television is and what is the real message of what they are watching on television or other types of media in general. In other words, allowing children to keep in war play provides a time and place for them to test out what they have been learning about conflicts and help them to form their own ideas and imaginations of what is about war and peace and about fantasy and reality, which all of those items are not true.
In conclusion, the television, and the children who view it are often pulled into its realistic world of violence scenes from the media with negative results and children get them wrong message from it. That is why these days, in our society is becoming very violent and children who are surrounded by violence and develop an emotional protection to it, and often grow up themselves to the same violence from everywhere in the media in general.
Belso, William A. Television violence and the adolescent boy. Farnborough, Hants: Saxon House, 1978.
Mander, J. “Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television.” New York Quill, 1978, p.158.
Kalin, Carla. “Television, Violence, and Children.” Master of Science, Synthesis Paper. 1997. http://www.mover.org/pub/u/lib/anth/essay (2 Dec. 1998).
Peterson, Bart. “ Report on Violence in the Media and Children” FDCH Congressional Testimony. 2000.