Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Analysis of "Violent Media Is Good For Kids" By: Gerard Jones

1. Jones' thesis in his essay is that media violence does not necessarily harmful to children, rather it is helpful.
2. As evidence in support of his thesis, Jones uses numerous arguments. One argument                  being people pull themselves out of emotion traps by immersing themselves in violent stories. Another example he uses is a personal one about his son. Jones explains that through out the years his son has used the identities of certain super heroes to over come obstacles in his life. Lastly he uses the example of an older girl who pushed through a tough family time as well as her adolescence by the use of rap music. 
3. Jones also identifies arguments against his position on the matter. He explains that one psychologist, Melanie Moore, who works with urban teens who also says that children use violent stories to meet their emotional and developmental needs. The counter argument to this would be that many pop psychologists are insisting that violent stories are harmful to kids. 
4. Jones's concluding statement is as follows: When we try to protect our own children from their own feelings and fantasies, we shelter them not against violence but against power and selfhood. In more simple terms, if parents begin to shelter their children too much, they will not have a normal child hood and growing experience. 

My Thoughts
After reading this article, the opinion that I though I had on this particular subject has changed. After seeing Jones's point of view I have realized that not all media violence is a bad thing. He makes several great points about how many troubled young children are able to use their comic books as an escape or even a crutch in tough situations growing up. Of course it can be argued that media violence has a negative effect on young children, but i believe this to be false because if children have some limitations to what they can and can not read it can be safe.

Critical Response 
According to Gerard Jones, violent media can actually have positive effects on young people because it can help pull children out of emotional traps by immersing themselves in violent stories. Jones also believes that violent media are a positive influence on children because children use violent stories to meet their emotional and developmental needs. Jones makes some good points. For example, he says that pretending to have superhuman powers helps children conquer the feelings of powerlessness that inevitabley come with being so young and small. 

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