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Brent Bozell: (Hollywood) Poisoning children, too? (Great Read!)
Townhall.com ^ | 3/4/06 | Brent Bozell

Posted on 03/04/2006 3:02:51 PM PST by wagglebee

It was some six years ago, and my youngest boy, Reid, along with his best friend Mitchy, both 3, had browbeaten me into taking them to the matinee of the "Thomas and the Magic Railroad" movie. We had settled into our seats, they with their popcorn and soda, and I with the mission of an afternoon nap -- a goal I was well on my way to achieving when I was jolted awake by the dialogue in the preview of the upcoming "Rugrats" movie. Scene after scene concluded with a comedic punchline revolving around soiled diapers, flatulence, mucus and God-knows what other bodily excretions, while my little boy and his friend giggled in delight. Thanks, Hollywood.

And here's the worst news. While most of what is offered as children's programming at the movies and on television is wholesome in its innocence, it is also true that even here, even in the programming produced for the youngest of the young, there are cultural landmines everywhere. The topic matter and language in the "Rugrats" preview wasn't the exception. It is the rule for much of what young children are now receiving, particularly on television, as entertainment.

The Parents Television Council has released the results of a new study that examined what Hollywood is producing for children ages 5-10, before and after school and on Saturday mornings, on eight different networks. The numbers should be enough to trigger a double-take for any parent.

First there's the violence. In 443.5 hours of programming, researchers documented a staggering 3,488 instances of violence. Now hold on, Bozell, I hear the apologists saying already, surely you're not going to condemn silly cartoons, are you?

It's a good point. Just how many times did Jerry dismember Tom? How many sticks of dynamite eviscerated Wile E. Coyote, and how many times did Elmer Fudd open fire on Bugs Bunny with that shotgun? This isn't serious violence. It is fantastic and fanciful, meant to elicit laughter because it's comedic and inconsequential. After the smoke clears, the character is back. So take all those "cartoony" instances out.

And you're still left with 2,794 other examples of violence. This violence is very different. It is realistic, oftentimes dealing not with goofy farm animals but with humans, and children to boot. It is dark: There is evil. It is consequential: There is pain and suffering. There is death. On Fox's "Shaman King," a fight between two characters ends when one kicks the other in the head and knocks him unconscious. The victor picks up the loser by his hair and reaches into his chest. The loser screams. The victor takes out the loser's soul and puts it into his own body. The loser appears dead. That's the kind of violence being presented to little boys and girls, ages 5-10, on television today.

What about language? Researchers found no less than 250 incidents of offensive language. There is the ever-present "potty humor." On the Cartoon Network's "The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy," Billy shows his guardian Grim (a cartoon Grim Reaper) what he thinks of his "stupid rules" by passing gas, but then announces he has to change his pants, implying he soiled himself. In another scene, Billy's dad picks his nose so much he pulls his brains out, and thinking his brain is mucus, eats it.

Euphemisms for obscene language are also prevalent. In the cosmic order of things, most are mild to be sure -- but not all. One episode of "SpongeBob SquarePants" deals with the discovery of dirty words, with the childlike characters SpongeBob and Patrick trading sound-effect-covered cuss words, and you can only imagine the obscenity of the sailor talk they're exchanging. More common still was verbal aggression, like abusive yelling and mean-spirited insults. There were 858 examples of these. And another 622 examples of disruptive, disrespectful or otherwise problematic attitudes, of which 53 were aimed at teachers or parents.

And there's sexual content, too, certainly something of great interest to one on the back end of teething. On Nickelodeon's "Fairly Odd Parents" a character uses his magic copier to make the things in his "dad's magazines" real. He pulls out the magazines; one is titled "Under the Bed Monthly." On Disney's "Sister, Sister" there are references to pornography, descriptions of foreplay, and discussions about a "Gay Policeman's Ball."

All of which begs -- screams -- the question: Why? There is no market demand for this. It is clearly out of bounds, offensive and dangerous. It shatters the innocence of childhood deliberately. And yet there are people out there writing these scripts. There are people -- not companies, people -- producing this garbage. And there are people distributing it with the goal to reach, and influence, as many millions of little boys and girls as possible.



TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bozell; children; childrensmovies; childrenstv; hollyweird; hollywood; leftistagenda; leftists; movies
Hollywood is working as hard as possible to destroy society and they start with the children.
1 posted on 03/04/2006 3:02:52 PM PST by wagglebee
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To: wagglebee
MORAL ABSOLUTES PING.

DISCUSSION ABOUT:

"(Hollywood) Poisoning children, too?"

Definitely read this!

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

To be included in or removed from the MORAL ABSOLUTES PINGLIST, please FreepMail wagglebee.

2 posted on 03/04/2006 3:03:47 PM PST by wagglebee ("We are ready for the greatest achievements in the history of freedom." -- President Bush, 1/20/05)
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To: wagglebee
There is no market demand for this.

No market demand amongst young children for fart jokes and mild potty humor? Is this guy really a dad? Or did he just invent the fact to make a sour point?

3 posted on 03/04/2006 3:06:27 PM PST by Zeroisanumber
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To: wagglebee; GMMAC; ferri; Tax-chick
On Nickelodeon's "Fairly Odd Parents" a character uses his magic copier to make the things in his "dad's magazines" real. He pulls out the magazines; one is titled "Under the Bed Monthly." On Disney's "Sister, Sister" there are references to pornography, descriptions of foreplay, and discussions about a "Gay Policeman's Ball."

There is absolutely no need for children to be exposed to that.

4 posted on 03/04/2006 3:10:26 PM PST by fanfan (I'd still rather hunt with Cheney, than drive with Kennedy.)
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To: wagglebee

One can't say anymore than read the Communist Manifesto. It's all there.


5 posted on 03/04/2006 3:18:04 PM PST by Digger
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To: Zeroisanumber
No market demand amongst young children for fart jokes and mild potty humor? Is this guy really a dad? Or did he just invent the fact to make a sour point?

Free speech advocates are quick to remind parents to control what their children see. That is the market to which the author clearly refers.

6 posted on 03/04/2006 3:29:04 PM PST by LoneRangerMassachusetts (From behind enemy lines)
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To: Zeroisanumber
True, the author weakened his argument by focusing on fart humor in the beginning. But his larger point in irrefutable: Hollywood is and has been poisoning the minds of children, as well as adults, for decades. Movies and TV have made the deviant aspects of our culture seem normal. At best, they have dumbed down the entire population and wasted our time. At worst, they have corrupted our consciousness irrevocably. Movies like Silence of the Lambs are examples of what I call "Deeply Evil Movies"--movies that use horrifying scenes of violence for no purpose other than to traumatize the viewer. There really should be a special rating class for this kind of #@%&.
7 posted on 03/04/2006 3:37:48 PM PST by giotto
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To: wagglebee

Heh, the Rugrats always gave me the creeps. The cartoon has such a dark, sordid feel. And where in the world were the parents???

But what really scares me are the Teletubbies! Those things are freaky!


8 posted on 03/04/2006 3:52:10 PM PST by BamaGirl (The Framers Rule!)
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To: All

I have seen really bizarre things on Family Channel as well...very sexualized.


9 posted on 03/04/2006 4:02:57 PM PST by fifthestate
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To: wagglebee

bttt


10 posted on 03/04/2006 4:41:19 PM PST by Christian4Bush (I'd much rather hunt with Dick Cheney than ride with Ted Kennedy.)
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To: wagglebee
No offense, but this guy is a dunce.

Euphemisms for obscene language are also prevalent. In the cosmic order of things, most are mild to be sure -- but not all. One episode of "SpongeBob SquarePants" deals with the discovery of dirty words, with the childlike characters SpongeBob and Patrick trading sound-effect-covered cuss words, and you can only imagine the obscenity of the sailor talk they're exchanging.

Yeah, and I can only imagine what's under that burkha, too. If a child has no pretext as to what the characters are saying, then they will not figure out that it's a "cuss" but merely a "bad word" (as stated by Mr. Krabs). I have seen this episode many times with my five year old and it isn't nearly as sinister as this guy paints it to be. "One can only imagine" indeed.

"Shaman King" is NOT for children. It is geared towards young Anime / duelist cartoon fans who have disposable income to waste on a trading card game.Think Yu-Gi-Oh, Duelmasters, ETC.

One point I'll give him is for Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy. This show is so crude, it makes Ren and Stimpy look like "Steamboat Willy".

HOWEVER, many people make the mistake of CARTOONS = FOR CHILDREN, therefore every cartoon is safe for a child. WRONG. Cartoons have an adult fanbase as well (just like comic books and video games) and many cartoons sneak "adult" humor in to their plotlines. (Fairly Oddparents is notorious for this, as they reference a lot of Gen X pop culture).

Before you plop your child in front of the television after school and wander away to do whatever, I suggest you familiarize yourself with what they are watching. Pay attention to the afternoon schedule and see what is GOOD and BAD about what they are or could be watching.

On another note, I just found some old Tex Avery cartoons on the 'net that would make some of the violence in today's cartoons look like nothing. PEOPLE (not animals) being shot in the face and falling down dead (with no magic "reincarnation")in a Droopy cartoon, etc. These cartoons were from the 1950's and were full of gratuitous violence, racism, off color comments and the whole works... so those "good ol' days" weren't all that rosy, Brent.

APf

11 posted on 03/04/2006 4:41:30 PM PST by APFel (Loose ships sink lips.)
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To: BamaGirl

Ditto that! I've thought the Teletubbies are as bad, or worse than, Barney for YEARS.

Rugrats, on the other hand, I have enjoyed. I've ne ver much liked Angelica though :D

~Moshi-chan


12 posted on 03/04/2006 5:37:10 PM PST by Moshikashitara (GOD BLESS THE USA! ~Proud to be an American 24/7/365!~)
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To: giotto

I don't know much about all this firsthand. I have seen 2 movies in the last 4 years and a TV last disgraced my house in 1986.


13 posted on 03/04/2006 5:38:33 PM PST by arthurus (Better to fight them OVER THERE than over here.)
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To: wagglebee
All of which begs -- screams -- the question: Why? .... It shatters the innocence of childhood deliberately.

To create a dysfuntional society that will either be easier to conquer from the outside or will become so chaotic that it will demand that big brother government step in and run things. Win-win for the left.

14 posted on 03/04/2006 5:47:56 PM PST by Mind-numbed Robot (Not all that needs to be done, needs to be done by the government.)
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To: Liz
Hollyweird ping...
15 posted on 03/04/2006 5:49:18 PM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: APFel
Shaman King is NOT for children. It is geared towards young Anime / duelist cartoon fans who have disposable income to waste on a trading card game. Think Yu-Gi-Oh!, Duelmasters, ETC.

That is exactly the point I made on another thread covering this topic. The manga (comic) of Shaman King is rated Teen, and there is no reason not to assume the anime would therefore be of at least an equal rating. Some people, I'm sure, complain about Yu-Gi-Oh!. But many anime fans complain about how the dubbed version is worse than the original Japanese version, because the dub edits out key scenes and things like guns and knives. Yu-Gi-Oh! is not geared towards children in anyone's mind except those people who have no knowledge of its origins. Most anime/manga is geared towards teens and upwards. I'm sure the same is true of many other anime that have been imported from Japan and dubbed in English.

Yes, I'm an anime/manga fan. :) And every anime/manga I like has more than a few child-improper scenes.. even supposedly child-safe shows like Pokemon, Digimon, Sailor Moon, etc. Though most anime/manga fans stick to one genre - gakuren (school-age, primary setting is in a school), shoujo (geared towards girls), magical girl, mecha, shounen-ai/yaoi (male-on-male; there is a difference between shounen-ai and yaoi: shounen-ai is like innocent love, and yaoi is much more graphic, more often than not including sex scenes.), good old fantasy, sci-fi, etc., etc., and thus dis a lot of what's in other genres; even though a good anime/manga comprises of more than a few genres, most are referred to by their primary genre. If there's a genre of novels or movies that you prefer, I can pretty much guarantee you'll find anime/manga catering to that genre. I read/watch a well-rounded variety, though I mostly read unless it has subtitles (or in the anime-fan's lingo, is subbed), because it's rather hard to try and read a cartoon's lips. ;^D I don't, however, particpate in any trading card games.. they're stupid, IMHO.

HOWEVER, many people make the mistake of CARTOONS = FOR CHILDREN, therefore every cartoon is safe for a child. WRONG.

Very much agree with that. Though I must point out that some adults can be very childish. (*coughmyparentscough* Lol.) :)

Before you plop your child in front of the television after school and wander away to do whatever, I suggest you familiarize yourself with what they are watching. Pay attention to the afternoon schedule and see what is GOOD and BAD about what they are or could be watching.

Exactly. Couldn't have said it better myself.

OT: Am I the only one who routinely keeps almost-but-not-quite forgetting to close my tags? Or not putting them there at all? Oh well :D

~Moshi-chan

16 posted on 03/04/2006 6:22:02 PM PST by Moshikashitara (GOD BLESS THE USA! ~Proud to be an American 24/7/365!~)
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To: Tax-chick

bttt


17 posted on 03/04/2006 6:56:13 PM PST by Tax-chick (My remark was stupid, and I'm a slave of the patriarchy. So?)
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To: APFel
If a child has no pretext as to what the characters are saying, then they will not figure out that it's a "cuss" but merely a "bad word" (as stated by Mr. Krabs). I have seen this episode many times with my five year old and it isn't nearly as sinister as this guy paints it to be. "One can only imagine" indeed.

I'm with you. It's a funny Sponge Bob episode, and totally harmless. A five year old kid isn't corrupted by seeing a magazine entitled "Under the Bed Monthly". They have no clue what it might mean. Cartoons and other comedies have been presented on two levels since the beginning of film. The writers are clever enough to understand that parents watch with children (or without them) and throw the parent an occasional bone. How many kids comprehended the cold war references in Rocky & Bullwinkle?

I just took my 4 and 8 year old to “The Pink Panther”. They laughed and laughed at the slapstick, while the double entendres and viagra scene went right over their beautiful little heads. Usually I’m with you Brent, but you need to chill on this one.

18 posted on 03/04/2006 8:59:08 PM PST by Minn
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To: Digger; fanfan; Just mythoughts
For years, Hollywarped's busy entertainment industry has chipped away at Western civilzation under the guise of "artistic expression." Politically correct Hollywarped films, TV and music are loaded up with gratuitous sex and violence, then Follywood types get thoughtful and start talking about "artistic meaning."

"Artistic meaning," my Aunt Tilly.

Hollywarped's MO includes endless poselytizing, continuous brainwashing of audiences into Christian-hating and American-hating. Follywood firmly believes that 24/7 of their sexually salacious and violent TV, movies and music are not harming kids and the culture.

OTOH, Hollywarped also believes----with the religious fervor of Tammy Faye Baker---- that a single 15-sec commercial will compel tens of millions of Americans into thousands of stores to buy billions of dollars worth of soap, soup, breakfast cereal and cars.

They can't have it both ways.

19 posted on 03/05/2006 6:25:51 AM PST by Liz (Liberty consists in having the power to do that which is permitted by the law. Cicero)
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To: wagglebee

Yes, Hollywood and public schools across our country are trying to reshape the minds of our youth. Unfortunately, it may be too late unless a huge ground swell of angry parents that are determined to demand change and accountability get organized and are willing to fight for their kids.


20 posted on 03/05/2006 6:32:36 AM PST by demkicker (democrats and terrorists are familiar bedfellows)
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To: Liz

I think many are enamored with what some call the "artistic process" no matter what the result is.

Conservatism is about the individual responsibility and some stretch that to mean the individual artistic process without responsibility.


21 posted on 03/05/2006 6:34:43 AM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: LoneRangerMassachusetts
"Free speech advocates are quick to remind parents to control what their children see."

The problem with that is that if there's a television in the home and children who are allowed to watch it, a conscientious parent soon realizes that there is little "safe" programming. Even networks whose programming is fairly innocuous make up for it by using trashy fillers in either the advertising or in plugs for other networks. And it's ridiculous to have sit there like a censorship sentry with a lightning quick finger on the mute button in an effort to control what the children hear. I know. I've done it. It gets to be almost comedic in itself...and disruptive to the continuity of the programming. Besides; it's likely that the constant bleeping or muting out of words, conversation or other inappropriate expressions will ultimately raise the level of curiosity the children have about such things.

Parental control devices are practically useless unless you block virtually all the channels...starting with the Cartoon Network. The only network I've ever had on in my home with children present that I felt fairly safe leaving on unattended for brief periods is Animal Planet. It would almost be better to only use the TV for prescreened movies, cartoons, etc. and avoid network programming and commercials altogether. Or just take the thing out of the house and spend the time reading books, playing games or sharing other quality time with them.

22 posted on 03/05/2006 7:13:08 AM PST by sweetliberty (Stupidity should make you sterile.)
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To: wagglebee

Bump for later.


23 posted on 03/05/2006 7:14:29 AM PST by Darnright (Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark. A large group of professionals built the Titanic.)
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