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The Effects Of Television Violence On Children

2593 words - 11 pages

Violence on television has been progressing since television's invention in early 1927. Now that it's the 21st century, violence in the media is considered one of the most critical issues in the mass media. Whether or not the media is responsible for the effects television violence has on young children is heavily debated. Should the media be more conservative when it comes to violence for the sake of better upbringing? Should the parents be responsible for allowing the child to be affected by the violence that's available to them on the screen? Does violence on television even make an impact to the physical and mental growth process of a child? In addition to others, all of these answers ...view middle of the document...

(The Associated Press)
        The 2003 March issue of Developmental Psychology, released by the American Psychological Association, had a different focus on the violence/children relation. They pin-pointed the major issue is that children view the violent television shows, and easily identify themselves with same-sex television characters. The young children's perception allows them to feel that television violence is realistic and acceptable. Violent scenes that children are most often to replicate are the ones when the perpetrator of the violence is rewarded for the violence. (The Associated Press)
        A study done during 1977 surveyed 557 children, ages 6-10, on which violent shows they viewed most, whether or not they identified themselves with the violent characters, and whether they thought the violent situations were realistic. A current study re-surveyed 329 of the original boys and girls from the 1977 study. They were asked about their favorite television programs now as adults and also about their aggressive behaviors. The participant's spouses or friends were also interviewed and asked to rate the participant's aggressive behavior. Researchers also obtained the participant's criminal conviction records and moving traffic violations. Their results showed that men who were high television-violence viewers as children were more likely to have pushed, grabbed, or shoved their spouses, or committed a crime or moving traffic violation. Some men were even convicted at the rate of three times more than other men. Women who were high violence watchers when they were children were shown to have been more likely to have thrown something at their spouses, to have responded to someone who made them mad by punching, shoving, beating, or choking the person. They were also more likely to have committed a criminal act or a moving traffic violation. Such women, who watched a significant amount of violence as a child, reported that they have punched, beaten, or choked another adult. This act is four times more common with these women as compared to other women. (Partenheimer)
        Can the results of the APA study really be possible? Some psychologists think so. According to psychologists at the APA from a 2003 study, a typical child in the United States watches about 28 hours of television per week, allowing them to see as many as 8,000 murders by the time he or she finishes elementary school at age 11. 75% of the time, the killers are shown to get away with the acts of violence while showing no remorse. (American Psychological Association)
        The focus of research on young children rather than adults is primarily because of the vulnerability children could have towards the violence compared to older children or adults. Young children are more easily impressionable, have a harder time distinguishing between fantasy and reality, cannot easily discern motives for violence, and most often learn by observing and imitating. (American Academy...

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