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Fri Dec 21, 2012, 05:33 AM

We Are a Country Drenched in Bloodshed: Some Hard Truths About Violence in the Media


The horrific massacre of schoolchildren and their teachers in Newtown, Connecticut, has unleashed an unprecedented debate about how to address the problem of mass violence in our country. There is an increasing sense that American society is incapable of protecting its citizens, including young children, the most vulnerable among us.

Yes, it's important to focus attention on the increase in the size and savagery of the murders: Six of the 12 most deadly shootings in our history have occurred within the past five years. The vast majority of the world's worst mass shootings have taken place in the United States. And there have been 65 mass shootings since Rep. Gabby Giffords was shot in 2009. Still, despite their horror, mass murders like Newtown are thankfully rare. So we must pay attention to the daily violence, too. Nearly 13,000 homicides were committed in the U.S. in 2010, 8,775 with firearms. So in addition to the most heartbreaking, large-scale killings, the problem is pervasive and the bloodshed overwhelming.

What About Violence in the Media?

It's revealing, that amidst the millions of written words, TV discussions and proposed solutions, regulating the violence that pervades mass media -- movies, TV, the toy industry, gaming, and the Internet -- is not often seen as a productive avenue for reform of our violent culture. This seems especially true of liberals and progressives. We invest a great deal of energy pushing strongly for gun control, which is more concrete and tangible, with clearly defined targets and enemies. But we stop short of going after purveyors of violence in the media. Traditionally, this has been more of a priority for conservatives.

But when we looked into the impact of violence in the media, we were shocked at what we found. We, like many people we know, and perhaps you reading this, had a series of wrong-headed notions about the nature of the problem. We found that the issue has been studied for well over 40 years, and has been the subject of over 1,000 studies -- including reports from the Surgeon General's office in 1972, and the National Institute of Mental Health. The studies "point overwhelmingly to a causal connection between media violence and aggressive behavior in some children," according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

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Reply We Are a Country Drenched in Bloodshed: Some Hard Truths About Violence in the Media (Original post)
xchrom Dec 2012 OP
Amak8 Dec 2012 #1
Fumesucker Dec 2012 #3
sabrina 1 Dec 2012 #4
Sherman A1 Dec 2012 #2

Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 05:34 AM

1. Is our media that much different from Canada/Europe/Japan/SKorea?

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Response to Amak8 (Reply #1)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 05:54 AM

3. No one wants to see the 500 lb gorilla in the room

America has 5% of the population of the world and spends as much as the rest of the world combined on war and preparing for war.

Ours is a remarkably violent government, that violence trickles down through our society from the very top. I don't see how it could possibly be otherwise.

You cannot have the most warlike culture on the planet and not have it effect the rest of your nation.

Half a million dead children are "worth it" according to the then US ambassador to the UN, notice she doesn't make even the slightest effort to deny the charge.

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Response to Fumesucker (Reply #3)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 05:58 AM

4. Sickening! And we wonder why there is no respect for life

What kind of person thinks that the deaths of half a million children is 'worth it'? Worth what? Oil?

There has never even been one word of sympathy for the mothers and fathers of all those innocent lives. And watch what happens here when you even mention these slaughters.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 05:35 AM

2. It is never

just one thing, but rather the sum of all parts.

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