Sunday, November 16, 2014

Wrestling with a Child’s Mind can have some Consequences By Mel

The content of violence on television has shaped U.S. culture in society.  It amplifies people’s emotions, engages the young audience to extreme views in which sometimes the viewer’s perception becomes reality.  I feel when there is no parental guidance in the home, television provides an alternative source to plug in influential codes in a child’s mind who accept what they hear and see is the norm in society. Albert Bandura, a psychologist developed “Social Learning Theory“ in which we learn how to act both in private as well in public by certain behavior on television.  This process is known as modeling or imitation.  For example the “WWE” a wrestling promotion owned by Vince McMahon which promotes extreme violence to approximately 320 televised and non-televised events a year broadcasting to about 36 million viewers in more than 150 countries according to WWE Corporate Live and Televised Entertainment.  The WWE creates a script-based compelling story line which includes characters, gimmicks which are not solved by negotiating or talking their issues out.  Instead they are solved by physical violence displaying athletic skills in the ring which are guided by announcers with play by play action to further enhance the conflict within the story.  To illustrate the value of this critical process Sut Jhally a Professor of Communication at the University of MA of Amherst appeared on “Wrestling with Manhood, boys, bullying and battering” stated, “bullying in wrestling makes a wrestler more popular.”  In the world of wrestling inflicting pain on the weakest people by physically dominating and humiliating their opponents garnish more TV time which equals more ratings.  As explained in “Wrestling with Manhood” pure athleticism mix with extreme battering is known as “Happy Violence” which is the skills of the wrestlers pulling off the illusion of violence.  When you see a wrestler striking his opponent with hard hitting objects such as chairs, thumb tacks, ladders, etc. and they continue to get up with no injury this is actually the performance taken place before a live audience.   Unfortunately, children as well as young adults cannot tell the difference between reality and fiction.  For example ABC News reported on July 25th 2014 that a 9-year old, 65 pound Derek Garland died from injuries suffered after rough-housing with his 16-year old, 225 pound friend Jason Crabb.  According to North Carolina police, Crabb said “he and Derek began grappling and Derek jumped off a bed onto his much larger opponent’s back.  Crabb, police said, allegedly flipped Derek over his back and the boy landed on his neck and back.”  These are some of the ramifications that violent television creates after a young child sees these images on a constant basis in their room.  Especially in pro-wrestling because young people do not identify themselves with the bully victim, they identify themselves with the bully. 

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