Your turn: Media not responsible for violence

Last Thursday I witnessed several guys beat someone with a baseball bat in the middle of Muncie's Village area, surrounded by a cheering crowd. In my media ethics class I hear one student after another support the idea that violence is becoming too acceptable with today's youth and younger generations. Often they blame the media for inciting violence using sound and images.

It is time for everyone to take a serious look around and realize that violence is part of our society. We are a nation at war, who prides itself on body count. In 1999, there were 28,874 gun-related deaths in the United States alone. Teenagers are becoming snipers.

Yet who gets the blame? The media. People around me nod their heads in agreement that movies like "Jackass" are leading a generation down the morality toilet, turning idiocy into a hobby, and stupidity into a spectator sport. I have no sympathy for people who imitate stunts seen in film and television. For those of you who have seen the movie "Jackass" with all of its self-mutilating glorification, and even those people who like to think that they are taking the higher moral ground by not watching it, you know that the level of stupidity a person possesses in order to attempt similar stunts privately must exceed astounding levels.

Anyone who attempts such stunts depicted in the film without understanding the potential of being injured surely deserves any and every trip to the hospital. It is now a clich? for parents and other Darwinian candidates to hide behind a veil of ignorance, claiming their grievances spring from the overwhelming influences of the media.

The damage has already been done, and we now find ourselves sailing the sea of morality in a leaky boat. Solely blaming the entertainment industry for weaving violence and idiocy into the fabric of our society is unfair. Parenting, for many, is now looked upon as a chore and not a privilege, and is treated as such. Guns and other weapons are too accessible to anyone who wants one, and the war on drugs is a joke. We have collectively allowed the line between acceptable and unacceptable behavior to sink to a ridiculously low level.

So instead of preaching moral code, sit back and relax while we marinate in our own stew of dim-witted carnage. Go take in a movie instead. Might I recommend "Jackass"?


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