Essay Television Violence and Children

Television Violence and Children

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A look at arguments surrounding the effects of television violence on children.

This paper explores television violence and its effects on children. It addresses how TV manipulates the minds of children, causing them to act in more aggressive and violent manners. The author argues that TV violence distorts children’s minds into believing that violence is a healthy and acceptable way of dealing with problems.
There are many different supports for both sides of this issue. Those who believe that TV does have a major affect on children support their belief with the notions thusly: television violence and aggression lead to violent and aggressive behavior in children, witnessing violence on TV shapes and desensitizes the child’s view of the world, and television manipulates the mind of the child (Wood, 1999, p. 317). Those who conclude that TV violence plays no part in the aggressiveness of children base their assumptions on the theory stating that violence and aggression in youth is a result of an improper upbringing (Associated Press, 1999, p. 6A). They believe that children adapt their behavior from those that they are in human contact with most often. Another poignant support for television is that it is an extremely effective educational medium. They feel that the positive aspects of television far outweigh the negative ones (Kalin, 1999, p. 2). Lastly, there’s the “catharsis theory” which thoroughly supports the use of television violence in all programs. It claims that TV violence reduces the viewer’s aggressive behavior when dealing with real life situations (Comstock, 1978, p. 188). Statistics can back up both sides of the issue, and so can emotions. The issue of the affects of television violence on our nation’s youth is a very heavy and controversial topic with many possible conclusions.
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