Media and Violence
It has now become a common occurrence to hear or watch about incidences of violence and it seems that they keep on increasing by the day. In the U.S., violent crime, which includes rape, murder, sexual assault and robbery, has been on the rise. According to a press release by the FBI, violent crimes increase by 0.7% in 2012 compared to the previous year regardless of the fact that property crime decreased by 0.9%. The estimated rate of violent crime per 100,000 was 386.9 offences. This leads to the question; could the media have a role in the increasing wave of violence?
Media’s role in violence
The media has been instrumental in reporting most of these incidences of violence. Some of the content shown on media channels these days sway more to the idea of glorifying violence and violent behavior. Music videos, movies and other forms of entertainment seem to be heavily loaded with violence and surprisingly, a culture has cropped up where violent behavior has become something akin to a deity especially among the youth. Analysts and media practioneers have defended the media and said that their content has no real impact on the society and hence does not make people more violent. Though this is somewhat true, as there are other factors that contribute to violence such as poverty, availability of guns and joblessness, but it still does not alleviate the blame from the media. Presently, shows such as Superman portray being shot in the arm as a glamorous thing and that it does not hurt, children, who don’t know any better, pick up these scenes and sometimes go as far to act them out with their friends or on themselves, it’s no wonder that there are incidences of children shooting their siblings dead or even themselves!
Something must be done to ensure that the media is held responsible for the kind of impact their content have on the viewership. A keen look should be taken to unearth how violence can be decreased and more importantly what role the media can play in reversing this scary trend of increasing rates of violence.