Buried Alive: Our Children and the Avalanche of Crud Response
The United States of America is one of the largest and very developed countries in the world. Technological advancement, however, characterizes any developed country today. The magnitude of the development in technology is felt in all fields, sectors and spheres of a country’s social economic landscape. However, one of the fields that have really felt the impact of modern day technology is the social pillar of many countries in the world. The United States of America is not an exception to this. Technology has hastened the diffusion of cultural practices from their origins to other parts of the world. However, not all the contents of many contemporary cultural practices are beneficial to the general populace, especially across the age spectrum in the society’s demographic structure. As is known to everyone, there is time for everything, and as such, the content of such thing as entertainment that we are exposed to from time to time should take consideration of this fact.
One group of people in the American society that has come under serious threat of culture erosion is children. In the United States of America the contents of many media houses and movie contents have been found wanted by various stakeholders who look after child welfare. Many people have really questioned the role of media, especially the electronic media, in facilitating the holistic development of American kids, especially the school going children. However, theoretical responsibilities of parents as people who are absolutely responsible for proper growth of their kids have been brought into scrutiny (Lansdown, 2005). Apparently, this criticism is justified because to a certain large extent parents spend substantial amount of time with their kids in their houses. Also they have got full control of such items as television sets. Radio systems, minicomputers, mobile phones and other household properties also have entertainment value. It is this realization that made the American film critic Denby publish a column in the New York Times. To him various factors are distinctive and they accelerate the damage to the American children.
Denby thinks that modern day cultural values like religion, classical music, paintings and high arts have lost their authority. In this he fully blames the federal government because of its failure to make sure that most schools in the United States of America teach music and arts in their syllabuses. He describes this as tragic because most kids grow without watching live performances but they instead rely on electronic media wholly. The media houses have compromised the integrity of the contents that they broadcast and write. Most of them present and promote the use of street languages in their presentations. Street languages are normally full of dirty contents. Some talk shows aired on the popular stations are not worthwhile to be watched by the growing American kids as this hinders their positive behavioral growth and development. The government has a role to play in this, because though it should not enact censure measures, it should at least formulate policies to regulate the content that is aired on television.
The parents have had a role to play as far as this damaging culture is concerned. As indicated earlier, most parents spend considerable amount of time with their kids. They should take time and give guidance to their children as to the best programs to be watched at what age. This is because when a kid is growing it becomes very vital for its parents to be the guiding light to the kid. Unfortunately, most parents have neglected this crucial duty and responsibility and watch their kids’ morals turned inside out by the movies as well as the programs they watch (Fasick, 1973). Parents also have got full power over electronic gadgets in their houses, thus they should use such control to make sure that their kids watch beneficial things only. For instance, they should block pornographic sites in the personal computers at home. They should also restrict the number of hours a week that their kids are exposed to electronic devices. This has the advantage of making ensuring minimal exposure to offensive contents through less contact with those gadgets. However, it becomes tricky when parents are watching the same things that they are discouraging their kids to watch. This is because parents are the first role model to a growing child and most kids tend to emulate their parents in everything what they do. Also with the rate of advancement and availability of electronic equipment the role of parents in shielding their children from damaging popular culture is becoming hard and complicated.
Most of these gadgets have become a necessity in such fields as learning institutions, so come what may, kids spend most of their time with them and whatever harmful that is spread through them will in one way or the other catch up with them. In fact, most of the kids are very conversant with electronics compared with their respective parents, as they are introduced to them at very tender age, before they even start going to school. This further complicates the situation via such early exposure to these gadgets.
Denby has also accused commerce for the woes inflicting American kids. American economy is a free market and the USA is a capitalist state. The implication of this is that the market place has allowed free circulation of movies and songs. That has eaten into the moral fabric of the American young generation. Diffusion of these products in the American market has been led by unscrupulous traders who are after their own economic benefit at the expense of welfare of general populace and the future of America, which is vested on the youth that is being morally eroded.
In the light of the above explained concerns and what is clear from what is happening in the American society, there is the need for concerted efforts by all responsible societal members to prevent popular culture from continued adversely affecting American children.