October 25, 1999
AS CONGRESS puts the finishing touches on the juvenile justice bill, it is time to ask ourselves: Who is teaching our kids to kill?In the United States, per capita aggravated assaults are up almost sixfold since 1957.I sat beside U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher on "Meet the Press" after the Columbine High School shootings in Littleton, Colo. He was asked if he could do a report on the link between media violence and violence in our kids."Sure, I can do another surgeon general's report," he said, "but why don't we start by reading the 1972 surgeon general's report?"
November 12, 1993
In the suburbs, the stylishness of violence is still largely a decadent fantasy. In the inner cities, it has become a death-dealing reality. Yet in both settings, young people desperately need to be educated, not just about the physical damage done by bullets, but about the psychic damage done by the seductive voices of popular entertainers who know how to sell shock. This is why, even at the grassroots, the problem must be addressed in cultural terms.How to do this? In the inner city, the lead has been taken by religious leaders.
September 22, 1999
A town meeting to discuss youth violence drew a small crowd in Columbia last night, but U.S. Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin had a message for those who stayed away."
December 21, 2012
What an ignorant, dishonest and pathetic response to Sandy Hook today from the National Rifle Association. As a media critic, I will limit myself to the disingenuous attack on the media from Wayne LaPierre, chief executive of the organization. Of course, it's a shameless attempt to avoid accepting any responsibility by his organization. But in the interest of a sane discussion about media violence -- rather than the demagogued, crazy-right-wing-paranoid speechifying of LaPierre -- some social science research, facts and context need to be presented.
January 7, 2013
As we begin a new year with new resolutions, I think it is important we move forward toward a more proactive society and less reactive one. One particular event that I believe truly points to this is the tragic shooting that occurred in Newtown, Conn. As a pediatrician and a mother myself, my heart goes out to the families in Newtown. The most basic, instinctive need of parents is to protect their children. As pediatricians, so much of what we do is meant to help parents and caregivers do this.
December 3, 1996
If you are a Maryland parent, your child may soon come home from school with a "Media Violence Inventory: A Parent's Diary." In it is this pressing message from Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr.:"Unlike many other factors placing kids at risk of crime, we can exert better control over our children's exposure to media violence. So I encourage you to fill out this Media Violence Inventory to understand better what your children are watching and how it may affect them."Starting this month and continuing for the next several months, the inventory will be distributed to 500,000 students in schools across the state as part of a public health initiative to reduce media violence.