Television: Not the Only Cause of Juvenile Crime

Violence on television is only one of the leading causes of crime in today’s youth. Video games also are a big contributor to the crime of youth today. Whereas video games can be openly violent, with blood, guts, and guns, television can be more subtle, taking children into its arms at a young preschool age. Children grow up on action filled shows, not realizing that what they see on television is being embedded into their brains for down the road. Simple acts such as choking a child or hitting a father with a frying pan may be funny and hilarious at the time, but the implications these acts have down the line really affect the child. Taking on the role of a Power Ranger can result in injuries to those who are involved, or even outsiders not even playing. Wrestling moves can turn into an act of murder. Role playing a shoot ’em up seen on television can later turn into an act of gang violence as a teenager.

Video games take over when cartoons no longer impress a child. The child is no longer on the outside looking in. Instead, the child is playing as a character, and it’s more likely than not that the child is playing a first person shooter instead of an educational game about the solar system. The child may become immersed in the sounds and sights they see and get angry at the video game when a loss is evident. This could result in the throwing of a controller or yelling at the video game, even though the game won’t hear a word of it, nor care if it could.

When the child becomes older, cartoons meant for teenagers and adults suddenly become interesting. The child may not even be of the proper age to be viewing the television shows, or not mentally ready for the genre. The original good guy vs. bad guy plot is either completely out, or filled with fighting and sex. Instead of catchy slogans and phrases, cursing becomes a popular way to communicate. The children pick up on this language, finding it okay to speak such words because “it’s on TV”. After the language, comes the violence. Not every child will act out what they have seen, just as they never did as a child, but there are always the few that will. Those spontaneous actions of characters, while funny at the time, have consequences in the real world. These television shows rarely show the bad side of actions, instead only showing the funny side and the reactions of other characters who have no way to take action against the character performing the deed.

Television does have a hand in lending to the increase of crimes among youth, but video games cannot be ignored. They too contribute to the growing bits of crime in ‘s youth today. The combination of the two is a silent, yet deadly, mind warper of today’s society.

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