Children See, Children Do. Media & Parents

Below is a video depicting the influence of parents and adults on their children. It is always amazing how much children are fully aware of what goes on around them and pick up on subtle cues and actions.

Though this video does not necessarily talk about media’s impact on children or our culture, it does highlight (though the form of media) that rather than simply blaming media for everything that has gone wrong, we as a whole need to take personal ownership over how our actions and behavior impact those around us especially the children.

Watch the video and read on below!

I remember when the columbine shootings happened, common perception immediately turned to the media, blaming violence on video games and music. In response some of the music camp responded by saying rather than simply blaming music, they should think about the parent’s role and responsibility in what happened.

As I watched that blame game saga develop the only thing I could do (other than notice how by nature everyone wants to blame everyone but themselves) was to agree with the fact that all people are greatly impacted by everything we take in both from media and from other people. Children are especially susceptible as they are still developing their worldview. Media has a heavy influence on not only what they see or hear, but even in the lives of the very people they grow up idolizing or following. This isn’t just celebrities like actors and musicians, but our parents, our older brothers, sisters, friends who also has had their worldview shaped by the media ever since birth.

In the same time it is true that parents also have a lot of responsibility in controlling what their children are exposed to. It is baffling to me when parents allow their children to watch whatever they would like, listen to whatever they would like without taking the time to check on what it is that will forever be burned into their eyes and hearts and shape how they view morality and other people. If you listen to violent music that tells you talks about hurting others and gaining respect all the time, it is going to make you feel less inclined to see violence as something wrong especially in the context of respect! If you listen to depressing love songs especially every time you find yourself feeling lonely and sad, it will affect you and teach you to idolize love as some ultimate goal of life and when you don’t have it, you shouldn’t be happy. Seeing a particular lifestyle whether it be promiscuous or carefree or without responsibility or filled with incredible adventure in commercials, tv shows, or in film, you are going to start believing that is the way you should live and that is how life is supposed to be when more often than not, life doesn’t work out so nicely.

What compounds to this problem is that people, especially youth, tend to believe that they are mature enough to know the difference and it wouldn’t affect them. The best examples are movie review sites where people review the morality and cleanliness of each movie. You’ll see 30 year olds saying it was great, but not suitable for young people. Then those in the 20s say it was a fun movie but those below 18 shouldn’t watch it. Then those who are 18 says it was great but those under 15 shouldn’t watch it. Those 15 say 12 and under shouldn’t watch it.. and so on.

Just some food for thought.

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