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How Does Television Violence Affect Children's Behavior

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How Does Television Violence Affect Children's


Does television promote violence and crime among children? Although most people look at television as an entertaining and educational way to spend time, some people think there is to much violence in television and that is influencing our young into becoming aggressive in nature and to tolerate violence. Now scientists have discovered that all the violence in television can in fact mold a young innocent person into becoming a monster right under our eyes, just by watching television. It might sound absurd, but think about it. It's 5:00 p.m. you feel in the mood to relax and watch a talk show after a stressful day at work to find out the topic is "He killed my sister and I want REVENGE!!". Sounds odd but most people like the thrill of violence. Why do you think "Nightmare on Elm Street" and "Friday the 13th part VIII" were so popular?, What do you think goes through children's mind when the bad guy is shot dead by the good guy and everyone applauds. He or She learns that its fine to hurt someone as long as they are bad, so if cousin Joey takes my toy its O.K. to hit him because his bad. This type of behavior can produce a false idea in children's mind of how the real world deals with criminals. All major networks ABC, NBC, CBS etc. contribute to this sad but true fact. If you seriously think about it, it's not all that uncommon to turn on the news or pick up a paper and find out somebody's face was slashed up simply because she was pretty or somebody was shot to death because of the color of their skin. Many of the senseless violent acts have been committed all over the country. Acts of violence are committed everyday by High school and even Elementary school kids. Psychologists and Scientist have been trying to figure out what is causing these violent acts among our youths and how to stop it. Unfortunately it's not all that easy. They have been researching television violence and how it affects our children's behavior for many years and know that the more violence a child watches the more violent that child reacts. The recent increment of crimes committed by younger children has put a lot of pressure on scientist to find answers for our nations future. It also has put pressure on government to pass new laws to protect our children from the violence. Many of the research conducted, points at television violence as the primary influence in our children's aggressive behavior. Even though results from many of the studies point to the violence content which is present in today's television programming, television networks have denounced any allegations against them. Even though we also have to consider that other factors such as the child's environment contribute to its behavior we must not throw away the researchers' findings. They must be carefully studied and examine for any validity. In this paper I'm going to go back to some of these studies conducted, research their findings, and try to and explain how the results on television violence relate to our children's latest violent behavior. Society is in an uproar due to these events and government is fearlessly looking for answers. Among these, the killing of a New York principal while looking for a missing student was one of the most publicized in the country. "The killing happened around 9:40 a.m. when Mr. Patrick Daly, Principal of Public School PS51 was making his way through cold and rain to an apartment building complex in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn. This is one of the most notorious crime-ridden neighborhoods of New York City. Mr. Daly was simply looking for one of his students who earlier that morning had left the school upset because of a fight with a classmate. "Mr. Daily was walking on a rain-slickened mall of barren concrete, when the gunfire crackled shortly before noon, the authorities said. He fell to the pavement, shot once in the chest by a 9-millimeter slug. Thus ended the life of one of the city's most dedicated Principals whose 26-year struggle on behalf of his pupils had been featured in news articles and on national television. On July 6, 1993 two of the three youths involved in Mr. Daly's death were sentenced to 25 years to life based on their convictions of second-degree murder. Mr. Kahry Bekka and Mr. Shamel Burrough, both 18, were given their sentence despite pleas of leniency by their attorneys. A third youth, Jermaine Russell, 19 was sentence to 20 years to life because he had no previous criminal record. It was a tragedy for all. This was a sad but not to uncommon fact that's why today, scientist are trying to answer everybody's question about today's youth aggressive nature. What makes them different and how is their lives related to other non aggressive youths. They may never find all the answers , but scientist are trying to explain how television violence promotes children's temperamental nature, that continues into adulthood. According to the Institute for Social research, an aggressive behavior is a learned behavior which is being taught to our children by the media violence that they are exposed day after day. Everyday we see crimes being committed through the cameras of our local news stations. Children in the United States watch Television an average of 7ј hours per day, 5,000 hours by the first grade and 19,000 hours by the end of High school . These figures are alarming considering that's more hours that our children spend in school, and that the United States has the most violent television programming among industrialized nations. These facts affects the younger children more, since their perception of what is real and unreal is not as acute as an older adult. Meaning that aggressive adults learned their behavior as children and the more violence children watch the better the chances are for them to be violent when they are adults. Scientist have been looking at the program our children watch and have come up with some shocking results. Studies conducted by scientists have found that the behavior of hostile kids in school were influenced by the shows they watched, especially if the youngsters were heavy watchers of violent programming. They also found that the most destructive youngsters strongly identify with warlike characters in the television, had combative fantasies, and expressed the attitudes violent programs portrayed. So programs like today's "Power Rangers", "Beavis and Butthead" are teaching our children to fight and be aggressive, because in the case of the Power Rangers the only option is to fight the so called bad guys. Several decades ago, a few psychologist hypothesized that viewing violence in the unreal television world would have a purgative effect and



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