How Can We Say That Television is Responsible for Increase in Childhool Violence?
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How Can We Say That Television is Responsible for Increase in Childhool Violence?

Television has become en essential part of our daily lifeit is the most popular form of entertainment. Our children spend less time in school than watching TV. During the past several decades, the number of violent programs on TV has been increasing steadily. Many researchers believe in the possibility that a direct relationship may exist between the violence witnessed on todayÂ’s television and the increasingly violent behavior of children and adolescents. The largest markets in the entertainment business are TV and movies. Watching violence is a popular form of entertainment, and watching it on TV is the most frequent and influential means of children being exposed to violence. Violence is viable type of human behavior and other forms appear less presentable, attractive and marketable. For example, some early local news programs provide extensive coverage of daily violent crimes simply because it is believed by many executives that covering crime increases ratings. Violence is only one form of human behavior, while smiling, laughing, poking fun in a harmless way, teasing, flirting, arguing, reasoning, family discussions, and showing simple affection between human beings may be considered some of its other forms but violence is the form that is dominantly displayed in all kinds of packaging on TV and movies and video games, etc. How can we say that television is responsible for increase in childhool violence? Studies suggest that television violence is responsible for the increase in childhood violence. Conversely, it is widely believed that American children are negatively affected by violence on TV and in movies because it desensitizes them to violence, and leads to sometimes irreversible patterns of behavior and actions in their adult lives.

Television has become en essential part of our daily life and it is the most popular form of entertainment.  Our children spend less time in school than watching TV. During the past several decades, the number of violent programs on TV has been increasing steadily. Many researchers believe in the possibility that a direct relationship may exist between the violence witnessed on today’s television and the increasingly violent behavior of children and adolescents.

The largest markets in the entertainment business are TV and movies. Watching violence is a popular form of entertainment, and watching it on TV is the most frequent and influential means of children being exposed to violence.

Violence is viable type of human behavior and other forms appear less presentable, attractive and marketable. For example, some early local news programs provide extensive coverage of daily violent crimes simply because it is believed by many executives that covering crime increases ratings. Violence is only one form of human behavior, while smiling, laughing, poking fun in a harmless way, teasing, flirting, arguing, reasoning, family discussions, and showing simple affection between human beings may be considered some of its other forms but violence is the form that is dominantly displayed in all kinds of packaging on TV and movies and video games, etc.

How can we say that television is responsible for increase in childhool violence?

Studies suggest that television violence is responsible for the increase in childhood violence. Conversely, it is widely believed that American children are negatively affected by violence on TV and in movies because it desensitizes them to violence, and leads to sometimes irreversible patterns of behavior and actions in their adult lives.

A reason TV and movies are under scrutiny is that children in America are exposed to more violence on TV with each passing year. The average American child watches 8,000 murders and 100,000 acts of violence before finishing elementary school.Children begin to notice and react to television very early. By the age of three, children will willingly watch a show designed for them 95% of the time and will imitate someone on television as readily as they will imitate a live person. The average time children spend watching television rises from about 2 1/2 hours per day at the age of five to about four hours a day at age twelve. During adolescence, average viewing time drops off to 2 to 3 hours a day.

Young children do not process information in the same way as adults. Nor do they have the experience or the judgment to evaluate what they see. For example, children between the ages of 6 and 10 may believe that most of what they see on TV is true to life. Since they watch a lot of TV, this makes them particularly vulnerable to the negative effects of television.

A real life example of violence affecting children in a negative way presented itself for the first time in 1977. Ronald Zamora, a 15 year old Florida youth was on trial for the murder of his 82 year old neighbor. At the trial, Zamora’s attorney claimed insanity suggesting, “subliminal television intoxication”. Zamora’s attorney claimed that the 15 year old spent countless hours watching action packed television programs such as Kojak and Beretta. Zamora was said to be “brainwashed into living in a television fantasy world”, rendering him incapable of understanding he was even committing a murder.

How violence shown on tv effects children?

The results of studies on the effects of televised violence are consistent. By watching aggression, children learn how to be aggressive in new ways and they also draw conclusions about whether being aggressive to others will bring them rewards. Those children who see TV characters getting what they want by hitting are more likely to strike out themselves in imitation.

Even if the TV character has a so-called good reason for acting violently (as when a police officer is shown shooting down a criminal to protect others), this does not make young children less likely to imitate the aggressive act than when there is no good reason for the violence.

In an important study carried out in Canada, children were found to have become significantly more aggressive two years after television was introduced to their town for the first time. Children who prefer violent television shows when they are young have been found to be more aggressive later on, and this may be associated with trouble with the law in adulthood. Strong identification with a violent TV character and believing that the TV situation is realistic are both associated with greater aggressiveness. In general, boys are more affected by violent shows than girls are.

Besides making children more likely to act aggressively, violence on television may have other harmful effects. First, it may lead children to accept more aggressive behaviour in others . Second, it may make children more fearful as they come to believe that violence is as common in the real world as it is on television.

TV violence makes children more aggressive, and these more aggressive kids turn to watching more TV to justify their own behavior, reports Leonard Eron, Ph.D., who chairs the American Psychological Association's Commission on Violence and Youth. "Television violence affects youngsters of all ages, both genders, and all socioeconomic levels and levels of intelligence," he found in a study that spans 32 years. And the effect is not limited to those who are already disposed to being aggressive.

But television is not always a negative influence. There is strong evidence that children's shows that were, developed to teach academic and social skills can help children learn effectively. In fact, research suggests that the positive effects of educational children's shows probably outweigh the negative effects of exposure to TV violence.

Another major factor that determines how aggressive a child will be is how his or her parents behave. If parents ignore or approve of their child's aggressive behaviour, or if they lose control too easily themselves, a TV control plan will not help. Similarly, if parents themselves exhibit violent behaviour, they serve as role models for their children.

How parents can help minimize the violence effects?

Parents can serve as models of how to watch television, as gatekeepers allowing or denying access to the television, and as interpreters of the content of television. However, research has shown that most parents seldom intervene in their children's choices of TV shows, though it is true that when children and parents watch together, it is more likely to be a program the adults prefer (Peters et al., 1991). This can mean that children are exposed to violence in crime shows and news programs that the adults have chosen to watch.

Sources: www.pediatricbehavior.com

- Does TV Violence Really Hurt Our Nation’s Children?

Useful studies and links:

* Television Violence and Children

* Research paper on: Violence in the media may play a role in this increase in youth violence

* More Young Children Are Watching Violent Movies; Researchers Fear the Negative Effects of Violent Media on Kids: Kids and Violent Movies: A Scary Trend

* Sons of violence

* Violent TV May Lead to Antisocial Kids

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Comments (4)

Great article. I certainly believe that the violence on TV affects children and adults. It isn’t only more violence on TV now; it is much more graphic than it ever used to be. Every little bit of violence is now graphic to the point of even slow motion graphic violence.

Thanks Sam for your comments. Even the cartoon and animated movie are also showing the violence in various ways. It is not only serious matter but we need to take some action which might be to keep our new generation away (from) watching too much TV.

GREAT article with lots of important facts! Thanks for sharing!

Yes I agree with the above. I enjoyed reading it

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