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Children And Television Violence: This Hits Home Hard

1043 words - 5 pages

Researchers have linked violence and juvenile delinquency to television programming since the 1950s. The United States Senate Committee on Juvenile Delinquency held a series of hearings from 1954-55 on the impact of television programs on juvenile crime. According to Cook, Kendzierski, and Thomas (1983), since the Congressional hearing in the 1950s, other reports on the affect of television violence in youth include:•National Commission on the Causes and Prevention of Violence•Surgeon General's Scientific Advisory Committee on Television and Social Behavior•The report on children and television drama by the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry•National Institute of ...view middle of the document...

Youth Depleted on Television News as CriminalsSeeing other youth portrayed as criminals during the local and national news may also have an adverse affect and contribute to juvenile delinquency. Local television news stories on youth and violence are ingrained with stories that feature the criminal justice outlook. Alternative ideas are often absent. According to Dorfman (1998, p. 80), "The public is not hearing advocates or representatives from social welfare, public health, medicine, mental health, or other fields interested in youth and violence." Dorfman also noted that 68 % of violent television news stories featured youth involvement.Too Much Time Spent in front of the TelevisionAccording to America Psychology Association (APA) (2008), studies by the University of Pennsylvania have shown that children view television, on average, 7.25 hours a day, 5,000 hours by the first grade, and 19,000 hours by the time, they graduate. Television programs show about 20 violent acts each hour (APA Online). Upon doing the calculations, this data presents that children witness approximately 380,000 acts of violence on television by the time they are 18 years old. According to the laws of psychology, when exposed to a certain behavior repeatedly, a greater chance of imitation occurs. During childhood, learning how to act by watching the behavior of others becomes a way of socialization. The APA provides the following statistics on viewing television violence:•Young adults between the ages of 12 and 24 face the greatest risk of being a victim of violence. (Warning Signs of Youth Violence, APA, 1999)•A child will have viewed 8,000 murders and 100,000 other acts of television violence by the time they are 11 years old. (National Television violence study)•71% of youth say they are interested in learning about the warning signs of violence. (APA, Warning Signs of Youth Violence, 1998)•One in 12 high-school students is threatened or injured with a weapon each year....

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