Chapter 1

The Media’s Effect on Society

What effect does the Media have on our society? There is a debate among society arguing that the Media is the reason for the problems with our society. From violent video games indirectly causing school shootings, movies promoting violence towards women and sexual promiscuity, and songs that, when played backward, promote satanic beliefs. However, the other side believes that the people arguing these things are just using the Media as a convenient scapegoat for those real social issues.

Now, me being one of the consumers of all of these forms of media for my entire life I can’t help but disagree with the assertion that the Media we consume makes us do anything. I have played countless video games where I have shot and killed thousands of digital characters and have even played the favorite among the “blamers”: Grand Theft Auto. Yet, I haven’t killed anyone, been arrested, or even been pulled over at all.

I feel that when the Media is brought into these social issues this regard it is only whenever a tragedy has happened or when a new movie, video game, song, etc. is released that challenges what was previously accepted. So, stereotypically, the older people or generation that doesn’t understand or haven’t been a part of that media speak out about it. I think this is because they may be scared of the unknown things that maybe their kids are getting into and, when it comes to tragedies, don’t want to think that their kid or someone else could this. So, I think they seek to find something to help understand why someone would do that. I don’t think it’s wrong of them to do this because we are all misinformed on the things we haven’t experienced before. I just think it is a little short-sighted and ignorant to make a broad claim about something you don’t fully understand.

However, I do believe the Media does a little effect on our society but not in necessarily negative ways. The Media can shape our clothing, the way we talk, and can, in my opinion, have a positive effect towards our mental health. That’s another interesting topic to think about. Why is it that the Media is mainly shown in a negative context when it comes to its influence on society? Anyways, I may be a little bit biased since I want to be a part of this “influencing media,” but I think that when it comes to extreme issues the Media is not the main cause of the problems with our society. I think that when it comes to mental health especially that the Media has positive influence because of the cathartic effects you get when you watch a movie, listen to a song, or etc. I know that it has had that impact on me because whenever I’m going through a hard time if I watch my favorite movie I will legitimately feel better which I think most people has felt that impact and have forgotten that the Media they’re criticizing is the same Media that has had that impact on them. So, if we could all remember to take an open-minded examination of these societal issues that the Media is being blamed for, I think we’ll come to realize that we are all humans and we need to look within ourselves and others to truly understand the problems.

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