Television Essay Research Paper Television Violence and

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Television Essay, Research Paper Television Violence and Children The world s most powerful teacher has been sitting on most living room floors across the United States for nearly sixty-five years. A classic American icon, the television can be found in 96% of homes in the country (Kalin). They can cost little but they serve three main purposes; to entertain, inform, and educate. However, the television began to have a new purpose in the early 1990 s that still continues today; corrupting children. Television violence occurs in 25% of the programs on television, not including cable. In one hour of prime time television alone, the average person will see five to six violent acts, and twenty to twenty-five acts of violence on Saturday morning cartoons. As a result, television

is teaching children that using violence to get what they want is normal and expected in today s society. If a child views and actor or actress getting punched and not reacting to it, the child will believe that violence does not hurt. Television violence is becoming a bigger issue in this country. The success of the entertainment industry has created quite a controversy over television violence and whether or not it has an effect on children (Mudore). With the average American spending 22.7 hours in front of the television every week, children will watch more than a fair dose of violent programming. Why do children like the violence that they see on television? Since media violence is much more vicious than that which children normally experience, real-life aggression is boring

to children. The violence on television is able to be more exciting and entertaining than the violence that is normally viewed in real life. Instead of seeing two grown men talk through their problems, they can see one start a fistfight with the other. However, children do not always realize this is not the way problems are handled in real life. They come to expect it, and when they don t see enough acted out aggression, the world becomes bland and in need of violence. The children can then create the violence that their mind craves (Kalin). Television is also guilty of advertising to children. Marketing toys, clothes, games, and sports cause companies to make millions every year selling their items to children twelve and under. Advertisers, within the constraints of the law, use

their thirty-second commercials to target America’s youth to be the decision-makers, convincing their parents to buy them whatever the hot toy of the week is. Television marketing teaches children that they will be popular and cool if they buy their new product. While this is the goal of marketers not just to children alone, but to adults also, this denies children the ability to explore and create and make themselves into individuals (Dennings ). Violence viewed on television is a form of marketing. Young children have trouble distinguishing between reality and fantasy. They can t make wise decisions, cannot form logical conclusions and cannot sort out relevant data about the things they see on television. They don t understand the difference between what is possible and what

is probable. If a young child see someone on TV jumping off a mountain and landing on their feet (i.e. the popular Mountain Dew commercials), they believe that it is real because they saw it happen with their own eyes and do not have the reasoning ability to believe otherwise. Children can not clearly realize the difference between reality and fantasy until their pre-school years and the distinction is not registered until the child is eight or nine years old. Children are very impressionable and are easily desensitized to the violence they see on television. Research has shown that young children are aroused by aggressive scenes on television and pay more attention when watching aggressive programs than when watching nonviolent programs. The more times a child sees a violent