Television and our Children

Essay by lcrzoexUniversity, Master'sA-, September 2004

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How much does TV influence our children? Is it an evil force that undermines family values? Does it promote indiscretion and total disregard of ethics?

Many people tend to enjoy relaxing after a rigorous day by observing the television. Sports, movies and documentaries provide a temporary escape from reality. However while adults are usually able to distinguish between fact and fiction the greater number of young children is not.

With the slackening of censorship, parents are beginning to show more concern for the development of their children. Sex, violence and bad language are accessible to even the most vulnerable of minds.

Added to that, some of the programs televised for children not only threaten to destroy their innocence, but also jeopardize their creative thinking skills.

Anyone, who has seen a gaping, glassy-eyed child transfixed to the screen, entranced and totally oblivious to reality, has to question the motivational capacity of the medium.

In front of this miniature stage, there is absolutely no demand for interaction whether physical or intellectual. No expectation of response is placed on the child, the entire process s passive. The child need not even exert his neck or eye muscles in order to follow the movement on the box. Ultimately, the inertia must have a serious effect on the child's intellectual abilities. Furthermore, a child absorbed in television is isolated, so the personal element is also eliminated.

The physical ramifications of spending one's childhood years glued to the set are obvious. Eye muscles become significantly weaker. The fact that more and more young children wear glasses these days perhaps bears testimony to the 'television worship' phenomenon. In addition, the mechanism itself - with its hypnotic fluttering of colored spots on vibrating lines that compose the screen's picture has a proven damaging effect on the brain. In...