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Protecting Children from Exposure to Violence in the Media Essay

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Protecting Children from Exposure to Violence in the Media


Children and adolescents in the United States are exposed to violence in increasing numbers each year. This may seem like an obvious statement, but consider the following: The average child watches 21 to 23 hours of TV per week. This means that by the time this child reaches age 70, he will have spent 7 to 10 years in front of the television. And with regular Saturday morning children's television containing about 20 to 25 acts of violence per hour, it is no wonder the average person has viewed around 200,000 acts of violence by the time he reaches 18 years of age. And while tragedies such as Columbine cannot be explained simply by blaming media violence, it currently appears to be one of the most easily correctable contributing factors.

The entertainment industry has maintained a stance that there is no link between media and real-life violence. And yet, scientific studies that number in the hundreds have concluded that there is not only a direct connection, but children repeatedly exposed to this type of violence lose the ability to discriminate between real-life and entertainment violence and tend to accept violence as an acceptable way to resolve even complex problems.

The solution to this problem is a bit complex due to the multiple parties involved. Health care providers need to inform their patients and the public about the real effects these media messages send. The entertainment industry should ...


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