Why is it that children in today’s society are much more violent than the children from only a decade ago? What could possibly have influenced the children today to become more aggressive? The answer is simple, the media. Children today are exposed to television shows, songs, video games, movies, and music videos that express, or show, more anger, violence, and profanity than what children from ten years ago were not. It is the media that is making America more violent than ever.
Young children often repeat what they see and hear. They do not realize that what they are watching and hearing may not be appropriate. If the child’s favorite character can do or say something and get away with it, then the child believes they can too. Some children may be old enough to realize that what a character does on the television or movie may not be right. However, if the character that the child is watching does not get in trouble, then the child watching will think it too is okay for them to do something and not get punished. The media today shows much more violence and profanity than years before. According to Holley Cefrey “violence is a learned behavior” and children “learn how to express [their] aggression through violence by imitating what [they] see or have seen done to others.” The children today are being raised to think that what they see is okay and normal, when it is actually far from it.
Today the average child and adult will “devote more time to reading, watching, or receiving mass media messages” than they spend at work or school. Studies show that “the average person spends over 20 percent of his or her waking hours exposed to the media.” That percentage “is more than twice the amount of time spent interacting with other people.” With the amount of time Americans spend watching or reading products of the media, it is no surprise that the media has such an effect on us.
The horrific details that are brought to our attention by the media “translate into real-world violence.” Seeing the violence the media exposes “promotes a fear of personal danger.” People in the real world are afraid and feel threatened by the images they see in the media. People believe if something terrifying happens in a movie, television show, book, or magazine then horrifying events could become a reality. Many experts think the fear one gains from what one sees in the media “leads to an escalation in violence and a loss of innocence, confidence, and pride.” Does media violence and the fear it promotes affect a certain group of people over another?
Statistics have shown that “boys [are] more susceptible to violence than girls.” This is because the media always portrays the male characters in a movie or television show as cool, and “that a strong attitude makes [them] a strong male.” Often the media will “emphasize male physical strength by showing physical dominance over or aggression toward females and other males.” In...