Violence In Tv Essay

1652 words - 7 pages

Violence on Television"There was murderers going around killing lots of people and stealing jewelry." This quote comes from the mouth of an eight year old girl after watching the evening news on television. The eight year old girl claims that she is afraid "when there is a murder near because you never know if he could be in town" (Cullingford, 61). A recent report from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) pools evidence from over 2,500 studies within the last decade on over 100,000 subjects from several nations to show that the compiled evidence of television's influence on behavior is so "overwhelming" that there is a consensus in the research community that "violence on television does lead to aggressive behavior" (Methvin, 49). Given that the majority of scientific community agrees that "the research findings of the NIMH publication support conclusion of a causal relationship between television violence and aggressive behavior" (Wurtzel, 21), why is it that "the Saturday morning "kid vid ghetto" is the most violent time on T.V." (Methvin, 49), and that "despite slight variations over the past decade, the amount of violence on television has remained at consistently high levels" (Wurtzel, 23)? Why is it that, like the tobacco companies twenty years ago, the present day television broadcasting companies refuse to consent that violent films and programming can and do have harmful effects on their viewers (Rowland, 280) What can be done to combat the stubborn minded broadcasting companies and to reduce the amount of violent scenes that infest the current air waves?The television giants of today, such as ABC, CBS, and NBC continue to air violent shows, because they make money off of these programs. In general, society finds scenes of violence "simply exciting" (Feshbach, 12). Broadcasting companies argue that "based on the high ratings, they are giving the public what it wants, and therefore are serving the public interest" (Time, 77). Michael Howe states: "We have to remember thatchildren and adults do enjoy and do choose to watch those programs that contain violence" (48). At the same time, however, we must also remember the undeniable truth that "there is clear evidence between television violence and later aggressive behavior" (Palmer, 120). Because violent television has been proven time and time again to play an active role toward inciting hostile behavior in children, the level of combativeprogramming must be reduced. The media argument that high ratings correspond with the public's best interest is simply not valid. Even the American Medical Association agrees that the "link between televised violence and later aggressive behavior warrants a major organized cry of protest from the medical profession" (Palmer, 122). The issue of the public's infatuation with television can be paralleled with that of a young child and his desire for candy and "junk foods." The child enjoys eating such foods, though they produce the harmful effects...

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