13 September 2012

Television and Children

I've never been very impressed with sitcom families especially the weak fathers that so often populated them. While the Cosby Show was enjoyable, I never understood why such a smart man couldn't have crafted a role that was more respectful and more respected. Let's face it: Claire Huxtable had the brains and she called all the shots as Dr. Huxtable yukked it up.

Family Ties was somewhat of an improvement but not much. Alex Keaton's mother seemed to have more respect for his father than Claire Huxtable did for Dr. Huxtable, but Mr. Keaton didn't have much of a spine either. Roseanne was a different story. Though annoying herself, her hubby was somewhat of a leader and authority figure and in some sense commanded respect. Home Improvement and Everybody Loves Raymond had strong but lovable wives, but their husbands still didn't command respect. And then there was Married With Children, the worst offender of all.

I wanted my girls to have a window on a healthy relationship and skipping over the aforementioned, stumbled across it in Little House On The Prairie and the changes in their behavior stunned my wife and I.

Shortly after they began to watch it, we noticed that they began to refer to us as Pa and Ma and the tone in their voices grew increasingly respectful. That's when I began watching with them and noticed, that though the girls on this TV show loved their parents and felt secure, and there was also a respect for their parents that I had never found in modern sitcoms.

So, the lesson to be learned in this is that television is very effective at propagandize children.

For those who are too lazy to actually parent their kids, I suppose the application to be made from this is that you should carefully select the propaganda you’re going to show your kids so as to ensure that they start modeling the behaviors you want.  At the very least, don’t let them watch the utter garbage that passes for children’s programming.  And definitely make sure that you don’t let them watch the utter garbage that tries to pass as adult programming.

For those who truly care about their children, the application to be made from this is that you get rid of your TV.  Or, if you don’t have one, don’t ever make plans to buy one.

1 comment:

  1. I hate the weak way men are shown in TV sitcoms.