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The Media And The Decline Of Critical Thinking

3785 words - 15 pages

The role of the media in our society has increased dramatically in the last one hundred
years. We have gone from taking weeks to send a message a thousand miles away, to being able
to send a message instantly anywhere around the globe. The effects this has had on information
being exchanged over many different forms of media is staggering. The question that has come
to be asked over the years, is what effect has this had on us. Media not only influences the way
we see world events such as through the news media, but in the ways we spend our money
though commercial media. It has had an effect on how we entertain ourselves and has at times
been the focal point of the entire nation at once such as the Kennedy assassination and the
September Eleventh terrorist attacks. So while there is no debate on the amount of effect the
media has had on our society, the question remains has it been positive or negative. It is my
belief that taken as a whole, the effect has been negative, Almost catastrophically so. The media
has over time made us into people who are incapable of thinking for ourselves. Most people
today cannot form an opinion, without first going to the television or the internet, to find out
what the rest of the people think. This has led to society becoming indecisive when it comes to
some of the most important issues of our day.
Not only has the media had a negative impact on our ability to think for ourselves, it has
had an incredible effect on our political landscape. Politicians use the media to drive messages
home at an unheard of rate. They pay hundreds of millions of dollars to these entities to make
sure that their message is being sent to as many people as frequently as possible. And even then
sometimes these effort backfire as people hear the message so much, that it becomes background

noise. But yet every election cycle there they are smiling, waving, and looking the camera
straight in the lens and trying to connect with each and every viewer in an effort to curry favor.
We cannot overlook the effect the media has had in relation to our decreased sensitivity to
violence, and what we are willing to overlook when it comes to violation of human rights. We
also cannot overlook the effect it has had on women when it comes to self-image and what the
media portrays as the perfect image. And then there is the silent elephant in the room, the ability
of the media to learn virtually everything about you as a person. Through interactions on social
media, you give up pretty much any semblance you have of privacy, and are bombarded with ads
if you search for anything on the internet. These are just some of the negative effects that the
media has had on our overall society in just a very short period of time. In this paper I shall seek
to provide evidence and fact, along with opinion from respected researchers, in an effort to prove
that while there has been tremendous positive...

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