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.
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 10, 1996
Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr. launched yesterday a campaign against violence in the media, calling on parents, doctors and television stations to help steer children away from violent television shows.Noting 30 years of research that shows violence in the media promotes aggressive behavior in children, Curran asked local television stations to promote safer programming for children and warn viewers about violent shows."We find most American children will watch 28 hours of television a week," said Curran, noting that "by the end of elementary school, our children have seen 8,000 murders on television and 100,000 other acts of violence."
November 13, 1996
ASK YOURSELF -- would you ever invite someone into your home to teach your children that violence is a good way to solve problems, that it will likely be rewarded and that it causes no pain?Of course not. Yet we effectively do this every day. Our children watch an average of 28 hours of television each week. By high school graduation, most teen-agers have spent more time in front of television than in school.And what are they watching? Kids leaving elementary school have seen 8,000 murders and more than 100,000 other acts of televised violence.
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.