Nowadays, the issue of violence on television is often debated. Many people are
concerned that the images of violent acts might cause the viewers to become more
aggressive. Some of these people believe that there should be restrictions on violent
television programs. Other people feel that individuals should be able to choose what
they want to watch on TV. Many of these people believe that violent television is unlikely
to affect people’s behaviour.
One of the concerns that some people have about violent TV is that viewers might imitate
aggressive acts. For example, consider a TV program that shows professional wrestlers.
Some people believe that children who watch the program might copy the actions of the
wrestlers and that this could lead to serious injuries. As another example, consider a TV
program that shows people shooting guns at each other. Some people believe that
viewers of such a program might be more likely to use a gun in their disputes with others.
Another concern that some people have with violent TV is that it might make people less
sensitive to the effects of violence. In other words, people who watch many acts of
violence on television might no longer be shocked by violent acts. They might then
become quite tolerant of the use of violence.
Some people do not believe that violence on television is likely to have harmful effects.
They point out that many terrible acts of violence occurred long before television. They
also argue that people can tell the difference between television and real life. That is,
they say that people are unlikely to imitate violent acts, and are unlikely to become less
sensitive to violence in real life. Also, they argue that parents are able to prevent their
children from watching violent television.
Psychologists have conducted some research studies on the effects of violent television.
Some studies have shown that children who watch a lot of violent TV do become slightly
more aggressive as adults. Other studies have found that people behave somewhat more
aggressively after watching a violent program. This is especially true for people who
have an aggressive personality. Finally, some other research has found that rates of
murder tend to increase slightly in the days following a televised boxing match. Nearly all
psychologists now agree that violence on television does contribute to aggressive
behaviour in everyday life.
The issue of violence on television is difficult because it is a conflict between public
safety and individual freedom. Some people feel that violent TV should be restricted
because it might have harmful effects on society, but other people feel that individuals
should be free to watch the programs that they like.