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Negetive Affects of Television

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Influence of Television

I hear the door slam abruptly and a thud from something hitting the ground. It's about 3:15, so my sister should be home. I bring her backpack into the living room as I see her fixated on the television. I tell her to put it away and she says ok, whatever. She gets to her room and not two seconds later does her TV click on in her room. I ask her if she wants to play catch, "No that's alright." She always loved to play catch, what about some basketball I ask her, "No, maybe some other time," she says as her eyes are glued to the box. Is television so addictive that it makes everything else look unattractive? It is very well maybe Marie Winn agrees; she names television the "plug-in drug." Although not as lethal as drugs and alcohol, television can have many effects too, and not necessarily good ones. According to authors in this section television has made reality seem second best, children more violent, and has made reality a world of advertisement.

First, television has made reality seem second best. The real world is filled with many emotions including anxiety, depression, and stress. Who wants to deal with any of these problems? You've had a hard day at work, so why not flick on the television and not worry about anything? As Marie Winn describes, "the television experience allows the participant to blot out the real world and enter into a pleasurable and passive mental state." For some people life without a television is less than complete. Winn says television will lead to the addiction of it because it becomes part of your life, and soon the real world is too boring to live in all the time. Winn observes a heavy viewer and they find the television irresistible, when it's on they can't ignore it, and can't turn it off. Winn also says that with television pleasures available and other experiences seem less attractive. The viewer eventually gets so addicted that they put off all other activities and feel that they can live in a less careless style. On the same note Rita Dove agrees with Winn by saying, "It's not that we confuse television with reality. But that we prefer it to reality-the manageable struggle resolved in twenty-six minutes."(Dove p408) People like to see the climax, stress and problem solved in a short period of time. Dove says that television an easier tale to tell, her daughter can recite a television program better that how her day at school was. The world is ugly and television is always invigorating, that's all people want to see.

Secondly, television has made children more violent. Television not only makes children more violent, but it also makes children more fearful to the world around them. Cyndy Scheibe describes how parents are concerned about violence on television. A big problem is that not only does adult crime dramas include violence, but so do cartoons and slapstick comedies. Scheibe explains some other effects of violence on television are that children may become less sensitive to the pain and suffering of others in reality and television. She also states that children may behave in aggressive and harmful ways to others. Scheibe says the reason for this is, "The impact of TV violence on aggression seems to be partly due to imitation of the aggressive actions that children see (particularly if they are done by the "good guys") and partly due to the message that aggression works to get what you want and it's okay to use aggression it you are justified in doing so." (Scheibe p1) Agreeing with Scheibe, Talia Trigilio also says violence in television makes kids more aggressive. Cartoons carry a lot of violent content, 46% of violence is found in cartoons. Trigilio said, "I was shocked to stumble across the statistic that there were more violent acts in an hour of Saturday morning television than during prime time." (Trigilio p4) A Common show like the "Power Rangers" is interpreting "violence is fantasy" but sometimes your viewers can't tell the difference.



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