Violence In The Media ? Is It The Real Cause Of A Violent Society? Essay, Research Paper
Which came first, the chicken or the egg? This question is mimicked when addressing the topic of violence in the media. Which came first, violence in the media or media in a violent society? There are strong arguments for both sides of this issue. Although violence in the media is very prevalent in today?s society, it is not directly the cause of violent acts by children and adults because there are bigger issues that cause this epidemic. There is much evidence to be addressed that proves this.
Statistics are a very influential in this case. Studies have shown there to be more violence in the cities then the suburbs. I see the greater reasoning for violence in the cities to be credited to the city itself. Now, this shifts into a debate over heredity vs. environment. Are the people that perform these violent acts innately predestined to do these things or do people do these things because of the effect their environment has had on them? Placing the blame on the city is saying that environment is the cause and linking one?s tendencies and characteristics to what they do is heredity. Of course both of these have an impact on the person, however, I believe there is more evidence pointing towards the effect of environment. Cities today are overcrowded and from 1990 to 1992, more than nine hundred thousand people were murdered. This is more than twice the number of American lives lost in the Vietnam War. The murder rate in the US is five times the rate in Europe while the rape rate is almost seven times higher in the Europe.
Other studies have further shown that males commit violent acts more often then women. If the entertainment business, particularly music and movies, influences people to go out and commit horrific acts, then why are there more men committing these acts? Why aren?t women in society as violent as men are made out to be?
If violence in animated cartoons on television such as Pokemon and Powder Puff Girls was the primary cause of children?s fighting, why is there not just as much, if not more violence acts and crime committed in Japan, Hong Kong, and China? As this trend begins to grow in popularity in America, ?anime? has been out in Asian countries for close to a decade. Characters in these animated cartoons commit acts of violence such as decapitations, executions, fistfights, and murder. These ?anime? shows are all around very graphic and detailed. Though this kind of television programming is viewed by children of all ages in Asian countries, the problem of violence is miniscule as compared to that in America. Asians learn to view violence as something that needs to controlled and ?ultimately mastered?. They learn this through a lifetime learning process of self-discipline.
The news media is also said to be part of the problem. In reality, the news reporters just cover the facts, the details that need to be transmitted through the airways. The news is not a sitcom. Reporters do not sit down and create scripts. They go out and research events and situations, take notes and report what they find to be aired on the daily news. Just because the news media sometimes fails to give enough attention to the good things happening in our country, does not mean that the excess of bad news causes random acts of violence. If the news only aired good things, crime would not disappear. The moral dilemma of media is the same as the moral dilemma of society. The media reflects society, so if you blame the media for making
your child misbehave, perhaps you should do one of two things. The first thing you could do is to censor the amount and what kinds of shows your child is allowed to watch. The second thing you could do requires a bit more initiative. It involves stepping out in your community and speaking your mind. Make a statement saying that you do not like how society presents itself today and start a program to influence change for the better. If for nothing else, do it to make the futures of your children brighter and something for them to look forward to. Taking a stronger role in the lives of today?s children is something they will most likely thank you for in when they get older.
The media is only a symptom of the greater disease affecting the United States. The disease is a deteriorating system of values. As any disease, the doctor caring for its patient treats the whole disease. For instance, the doctor would not only hand you tissues if you were suffering from the flu, he would prescribe you medicine, tell you to get lots of rest, drink lots of fluids, and advise you to miss work/school until you feel up to it. Media is a symptom that has to treated and handled with care. Everyone?s views need to be respected and heard. Attacking this issue head on is the only way to make a difference. Unfortunately, our world will probably never be free of violence. That does not mean that there is no opportunity to try. Violence on television roots from violence in society. There is our aim. We need to work for a peaceful world. Parents need to censor what their children are watching. Do not blame television for society?s faults. Society?s faults lie within its citizens. The disease lies with everyone.