English IV – 5th Per.
22 March 14
Media Influences on Violence Amongst Youth
During a time when people in my generation should be focused on prom, graduation and what’s the coolest color that we can color our hair and not get suspended from school, its really disheartening that a topic such as media influences on youth violence has such a large amount of available research. The fact that we are often flooded with images of violence and countless examples of the inability of young adults to resolve conflicts without the use of violence supports the position that our culture among young adults is one centered around violence. This culture of violence is not only fueled by media influences but also on some level, some might argue, even encouraged by the images we see on our televisions or lyrics we experience in our songs. Take for example the following lyric from a popular hip hop song: “two glock 40s now you got 80 problems;” although clever and obviously representative of an author who is very intelligent, the sole point of the lyric is to promote and advocate for the use of violence as a part of everyday life. And we are often left to worry what effect do lyrics like this have on youth who aren’t yet mature enough to recognize that lyrics such as the one above are merely designed to entertain. In this paper, we will present arguments for how social media, hip hop music and television each independently foster and promote a culture of violence among youth.
Cyber bullying is defined as bullying that takes place using electronic technology. Electronic technology includes devices and equipment such as cell phones, computers, and tablets as well as communication tools including social media, sites, text messages, chat, and websites (What is Cyberbullying). According to Enough is Enough Cyberbulling Statistics, researchers estimate that approximately 33% of youth and young adults are victims of cyber bullying everyday and cyber bullying has been the cause of deaths among youth in the past. For example According to a New York Times article dated September 13, 2013, Rebecca Sedwick, a 12-year-old girl, committed suicide due to cyber bullying that occurred via the use of cell phone applications. Students from Rebecca’s middle school sent out hurtful text messages to Rebecca and also on social networks. On Tuesday, September 10, 2013 Rebecca delivered a text message to two friends saying “Goodbye forever”. Briefly after those messages were delivered, Rebecca climbed a platform at an abandoned cement plant near her home in the Central Florida city of Lakeland and leaped to her death. Rebecca became one of the youngest members of a growing list of children and teenagers driven to suicide as a result of cyber bullying and other forms of aggressive behavior more prominent today among youth and young adults (Girl’s Suicide Points to Rise in Apps Used by Cyberbullies).
Another manner in which social media promotes a culture of...