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Linking Media Violence and Negative Behavior

Many Americans feel that the viewing of violence in the media reinforces negative behavior in society, especially among children and young adults. “Three thousand studies have been done since 1955 on the link between television and violence; 2,980 of them found a correlation between the two. We hear little about that because we get most of our news from television” (Peterson). With this much research one must acknowledge that there is a problem in America involving sex and violence in the media. We cannot blame all societal problems on the media and its portrayal of these issues, but we can become educated, ourselves, in order to better facilitate the healthy lives of our children.

“We, as a society, did this to ourselves,” said psychologist Dr. David Walsh, executive director of clinics and systems operations for Fairview Behavioral Services in Minneapolis. “Violence grabs the headlines, but violence itself is a result of a society that promotes selfishness, greed and instant gratification” (Peterson). Violence on public television often catches us in a serious debate. Concerned parents fear that viewing inappropriate images presented by the media will corrupt America’s youth. They cringe at the idea of our nation’s children growing up to be vicious killers due to the brutal violence often seen on TV. Some blame television for most, if not all, of the ills of society and its children. “Truly it accounts for about 10 percent of violence, which means that 90 percent is caused by other things,” Leonard Eron says. “Violence is a multi-determined behavior. It’s caused by genetic, biological, physiological, macroeconomic and macrosocial factors, all of which can account for some part of the variance.” Understanding…

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The Effects of Television Violence on Children

Violence on television has been progressing since television’s invention in early 1927. Now that it’s the 21st century, violence in the media is considered one of the most critical issues in the mass media. Whether or not the media is responsible for the effects television violence has on young children is heavily debated. Should the media be more conservative when it comes to violence for the sake of better upbringing? Should the parents be responsible for allowing the child to be affected by the violence that’s available to them on the screen? Does violence on television even make an impact to the physical and mental growth process of a child? In addition to others, all of these answers could potentially lead to solving this critical issue.

Violence, including homicide, suicide, and trauma, is a leading cause of death for children, young adults, and adolescents, over diseases, cancer or congenital disorders. (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2001) Is television responsible?

In 2000, four national health associations linked the violence in television, music, video games, and movies to increasing violence among children. The American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Psychological Association, and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry have based over 30 years of research to discover that viewing entertainment violence, especially on television, can lead to increasing aggressive attitudes, values and behaviors, to all people but especially children. A joint statement concluded that the effects of violence are measurable and long-lasting. From their research, the health associations concluded that children who see a lot of violence are more likely to view viole…

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…rro, Joaquin. “Public Opinion.” Violent Media Effects. 2000. 7 May 2007 .

Partenheimer, David. “Childhood Exposure to Media Violence Predicts Young Adult Aggressive Behavior, According to a New 15-Year Study.” APA Press Releases. 09 Mar 2003. American Psychological Association. 7 May 2007 .

Stromberg, Marjorie. “Violence in the Media: Who’s to blame?” 09 Apr 2007.

7 May 2007 .

The Associated Press, “Health groups directly link media to child violence.” CNN. 26 Jul 2000. 7 May 2007 .

The Museum of Broadcast Communications, “Married..With Children.” 7 May 2007 .

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