erik lundegaard

Did Neocons, Gun Nuts, Watch Too Many Cartoons as Kids?

Dick Cheney

At least some Popeye anyway.

The following is from Michael Medved's 1992 book “Hollywood vs. America,” during the discussion (or monologue) on whether what we see is what we do. I.e., Do repeated viewings of violent images, thousands of them in a young life, lead us toward violence ourselves? Or, for some, toward fear and paranoia?

Here's the quote. Or quotes:

“Young viewers who watch a lot of TV are more likely to agree that it is almost always right to hit someone if you are mad at them for a good reason,” Dr. Gerbner reports. ... 

Dr. Thomas Radecki, research director of the National Coalition on Television Violence, points out that the destructive impact of the popular culture is “not just a kids' issue. There is overwhelming evidence that adults as well as children are affected by the glamorization and promotion of violence. TV-watching adults are more likely to purchase handguns, support military solutions to world problems, and overestimate the amount of violence in the real world.”

The oddity of this book is that I agree with a lot of Medved's battles but he's constantly losing the war with me. I do think, for example, that there's too much violence on TV and movie screens. I also agree that movie and TV images are influential. Just like anything in life but moreso. They're viewed, after all, a million times around the world.

I just don't blame Hollywood; I blame us. Generally, if these movies didn't sell, Hollywood wouldn't make them. But they make them because we buy them; because we want them. Thus far, Medved only blames Hollywood. 

More later.

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Posted at 03:19 PM on Thu. Aug 27, 2015 in category Books  

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