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INTRODUCTION:

Blockbuster favorites yield millions of dollars each year, and


advertisers pay thousands to network television stations for seconds of
airspace strategically placed throughout popular television shows.
From drama to comedy, soap operas to sitcoms, television seems to
offer something for everyone-including our kids. Statistics indicate that
children watch up to 30 hours of television each week, almost
equivalent to the time spent in a full-time job. For younger viewers,
one type of program seems to have a special attraction i.e. cartoons.

Cartoons have some negative and positive impacts on the children as


their minds are innocent and at a stage of learning. Children of
different ages watch and understand television in different ways,
depending on the length of their attention spans, the ways in which
they process information, the amount of mental effort they invest, and
their own life experiences. The affects of violence on children of
different ages is different.

"Do these cartoons affect children?"


Some say these programs are harmless entertainment that can
increase a child’s imaginative faculties; others are concerned that
these cartoons may be too violent for children, or encourage the wrong
kind of behavior. Unfortunately, the answer is yes some cartoons are
affecting children.
NEGATIVE AFFECTS:
Cartoons are some of the most violent programs on TV. Cartoon
violence can be particularly harmful because it trivializes the violence,
often making it funny.

One problem with cartoons is that they do not challenge children's


minds. When a child watches television, the screen is doing all of the
thinking for him, leaving nothing up to the child's imagination. As a
result of this lack of stimulation, only minimal brain activity occurs,
thus depriving the child's mind of growth and development. When one
considers mental development, cartoons are essentially useless.

A second and more serious problem with cartoons is that they often
hinder proper moral development. Unfortunately, too often cartoons
display improper behavior, morals, and actions. Many times, the
characters in cartoons may yell at each other, telling the other person
to "Shut up!" Other times, the cartoon may show hatred and violence,
with fighting occurring between the characters. Just as seriously, the
characters in cartoons are frequently disrespectful towards parents
and other authority figures as well. Clearly, these programs are not
promoting or reinforcing the values that most parents teach their
children.

For example: in the cartoon TOM & JERRY,

“Tom took off after Jerry trying to snip off his head with a scissor. Jerry
then turned the scissors on Tom cutting his tale into a row of paper
dolls. Then the chasing went outside. Tom flattened Jerry with a shovel.
Jerry found a lead pipe and beat Tom in the shins. In the next scene,
Tom was chasing Jerry with lawn mower.”
It’s amusing, but it teaches children that violence is not serious. It also
teaches them that violence does not have serious, genuine
consequences.

WHAT DOES RESEARCH SHOW?


Psychological research has shown three major effects of seeing
violence on television:

• Children may become less sensitive to the pain and suffering of


others
• Children may be more fearful of the world around them
• Children may be more likely to behave in aggressive or harmful
ways toward others.

One example: in several studies, those who watched a violent program


instead of a nonviolent one were slower to intervene or to call for help
when, a little later, they saw younger children fighting or playing
destructively.

Studies by George Gerbner, Ph.D., at the University of Pennsylvania,


have shown that children's TV shows contain about 20 violent acts
each hour and also that children who watch a lot of television are more
likely to think that the world is a mean and dangerous place.
Aletha Huston, Ph.D., said;

“The children who watched the violent cartoons, were more likely to
hit their playmates, argue, disobey class rules, leave tasks unfinished,
and were less willing to wait for things than those children who
watched nonviolent programs.”

Real-Life Studies:

Findings from the laboratory are further supported by field studies


which have shown the long-range effects of televised violence.
Leonard Eron, Ph.D., and his associates at the University of Illinois,
found that children who watched many hours of TV violence when they
were in elementary school tended to also show a higher level of
aggressive behavior when they became teenagers. By observing these
youngsters until they were 30 years old, Dr. Eron found that the ones
who'd watched a lot of TV when they were eight years old were more
likely to be arrested and prosecuted for criminal acts as adults.

SOME COMMENTS:
Watching scientific fantasy cartoons Fatima Yahya, 11 says:

“I love these cartoons because I learn some things related to


adults, I feel that my mind develops and I think that I can make
a lot of small scientific things.”

Kholoud al-Mansour, 18, a high school graduate:


“Adults can distinguish between reality and fantasy, so such
cartoons cannot affect them badly. But I think that small
children are terribly affected by such things. They react to the
characters in these cartoons and try to imitate them. I love
watching some scientific fantasy cartoons, such as Yugi-oh and
Pokémon, but I am not affected by these cartoons like my
younger brother and sisters are.”

Haley Feuerbacher said:

“My friend's son's cartoons are teaching him how to use


harmless basketballs as mighty death missiles to eliminate evil
Zorab, otherwise known as his little sister. I watched as the
older boy, a sweet-tempered, really loving child, got up and
whacked his sister with a laser sword. The little three-year-old
of course started screaming that her brother had hit her, and
when I asked him why on earth he did such a thing, he stared
blankly at me, and replied, "I don't know." Should I blame the
violent cartoons he had been watching for him acting out his
role as a Power Ranger?”
VIOLENT CARTOONS:
There are many cartoons broadcasted on T.V. which can be harmful for
children due to the violent content. Cartoon violence in various
degrees has been around since Mortimer Mouse (Mickey Mouse) in
Steam Boat Willie, Popeye, 3 Stooges, Superman, Looney Tunes,
Scooby Doo, Tom, and Jerry, Justice League and so on. Now the
modern scientific fantasy cartoons can make children more aggressive
like Pokemon, Ben-10, and Star wars etc.

Cartoons aim for children show more brutality than any other program
shown on T.V. for general viewer ship. Cartoons often show the
characters smoking which can create an adverse affect on the small
innocent mind watching.

For example in two episodes of children favorite Tom & Jerry


namely Texas Tom and Tennis Chumps:

“In the first Tom is shown trying to impress a female cat by


rolling a cigarette, lighting it and smoking it with one hand. In
the second, Tom's tennis opponent is seen smoking a large
cigar.”
Tom and Jerry smoking usually appears in a stylish manner that can be
yet more attractive for the children to imitate.

In some other cartoons also we can find the characters smoking.

In the Looney Tunes cartoons we can find a high level of violent


behavior as the characters are using guns, dynamites, canons, rifles
and various destructive weapons in an amusing manner. The only thing
an immature brain can extract from these types of cartoons is
aggression, cruelty, brutality and spitefulness is good and enjoyable.

Super man and Justice League cartoons are also affecting the
juvenile minds of children. How? The concept of a human being flying
all over the city and helping the others seems so fascinating to these
young brains and some real incidents have been recorded in the past
where the innocent kids lost their lives in trying to fly like our super
heroes and jumped from balcony wrapped in a red veil around the
neck. These types of cartoons include Superman, Spiderman and all
the members of Justice League.
The Japanese based internationally famous cartoon Pokemon,
abbreviation of Pocket Monster can make children more aggressive,
and research has found that the violent scenes in cartoons like
Pokemon can be damaging for these unripe mind. They also fosund
that children identify as much with cartoon characters as real actors,
and that many animated shows contain more violence than television
aimed at adolescents. The monsters fighting with their powers and
weapons like swords take the children to a fantasy world where
violence or hiting any other human being is not harmful.

Christine Cannon, a teacher says:

“I have the opportunity to observe children’s conduct and to


discover what influences their actions. I was amazed to find
that almost 90% of the time they misbehave; they are
imitating something they saw on TV. In one instance, two
young boys in my class were fighting; they were punching,
calling each other stupid, and yelling at each other to shut up.
After separating them, I asked each boy where he had learned
to act the way he did. They both gave me the same response:
They saw it on TV.”

Here, I would like to clear that I am not criticizing fantasy cartoons,


without fantasy cartoons are incomplete. Basically I am against or
telling the negative aspect of such cartoons that are conveying wrong
kind of attitude, violent scenes that are only giving the message that
violence is funny and scientific fantasy cartoons that leads to develop
wrong scientific concepts among children.
WHAT PARENT S CAN DO?
While most scientists are convinced that children can learn aggressive
behavior from television, they also point out that parents have
tremendous power to moderate that influence.

• Because there is a great deal of violence in both adult and


children's programming, just limiting the number of hours
children watch television will probably reduce the amount of
aggression they see.

• Parents should watch at least one episode of the programs their


children watch. That way they'll know what their children are
watching and be able to talk about it with them.

• Parents can outright ban any programs that they find too
offensive. They can also restrict their children's viewing to shows
that they feel are more beneficial, such as documentaries,
educational shows and so on.

• Parents can limit the amount of time children spend watching


television, and encourage children to spend their time on sports,
hobbies, or with friends; parents and kids can even draw up a list
of other enjoyable activities to do instead of watching TV.

• Parents can encourage their children to watch programs that


demonstrate helping, caring and cooperation. Studies show that
these types of programs can influence children to become more
kind and considerate.

• Children should also be encouraged to read, which has far more


mental and educational and emotional benefits than sitting in
front of a television.
CONCLUSION:
In the end I would like to conclude that by the research I didn’t mean
that cartoons are not good for children. All I emphisize is that the kids
should be provided with quality entertainment, entertainment is
laughter but violence is not the way of doing it. Watching the cartoons
which are showing a high level of violence, destructive weapons,
characters fighting and bruitly beating eachother and smoking,
scientific fantsy creations and creatures, monsters with super powers
and etc. do you think the innocent, immature kids watching them will
not have any negative aspect on their behavior or attitude towards
their surounding? Or they will not immitate what they see?

Here, again I would like to mention that I am not against cartoons or


fantasy based cartoons, fantasy is the main content of cartoons and
infact every human being has his or her own secret fantasy world. So,
fantasies are only harmful when they are giving a wrong message,
especially to the juvinile minds of kids. Voilence is not fuuny and it is
not harmless so the children needs help to develop a sence of
consequens of those acts which they saw the cartoon characters doing.
Definitely, if you drop an anvil on a cat's head like in the cartoons that
cat in real life will not get up again. Or fighting the imaginary monsters
or evil robots, other wise known as human beings with toys which may
include plastic swords, guns, and basket balls as deadly missile etc.
has their consequences.

Parents can do a fine job by keeping a check on their kids while


watching T.V and using internet. Watching cartoons is not bad
although it’s a complete entertainment for children but the hours of
watching cartoons and T.V. must be limited and decided by the parents
and they can provide their kids with different interesting useful
activities than only watching cartoons on T.V. Parents must encourage
children to watch different programs which can be more educational,
they can also encourage them to read books.
REF ERENCES:
• www.sott.net
• http://images.google.com.pk
• cartoons-comics.deepthi.com
• www.ask.com
• http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/340059/the_pokemon_
syndrome_are_todays_cartoons.html
• www.wikipedia.com
• cartoons-comics.deepthi.com