Blaming the media for violence in the world is like blaming art galleries for showing art. Art would have been made with or without the galleries.
The thought of violence came to me while reading a post on Facebook. Someone wasn’t happy with a show, thought it was “brutish”, yet they were quite happy if some mythical creatures came in and killed the characters.
Gee, sounds kinda brutal.
Even though I agree with the post, it made me think of the seemingly never-ending bitching and complaining of violence in the media and its effect on our young and society.
First off, real violence is bad. It hurts, kills, maims and scars.
But, do I blame Looney Tunes for wanting to drop an anvil on someone? First off, anvils are reeeally heavy. Ever try to pick one up? Even a little one? They are heavy. So either Wile E. Coyote works out regularly, or the CARTOON anvil is a CARTOON. Besides, Looney Tunes wasn’t around in Roman times, when they threw Christians into the Coliseum to feed their lions. I suspect Hitler wasn’t a fan of Warner Brother’s cartoons. I never saw Elmer Fudd attempting genocide, potentially influencing those dicks who killed of hundreds of thousands of innocent people.
Violence is popular because it’s easy.
Try this test if you like…
Walk up to someone, preferably a total stranger, and try to give them a hug. If you’re a guy, hug another guy. If you’re a large intimidating guy, trying hugging anyone. The reaction, if you can actually go through with it, will most likely be displeasure.
Now, walk up to a total stranger and hit them. Doesn’t even have to be a punch in the face or something. Just a slap or a strong nudge. The reaction you get may be the same as the hugging, but I bet it’ll be easier to hit someone than to hug them.
Kinda sad, when you think about it.
The reason is we, as a species, are still animals. Sure we walk upright, talk on cell phones and wiggle thumbs at all the opposable-thumbless creatures we see, but deep down, we are animals. Back in the day, when our hairy asses walked the savannah, we were more often the food. So we had two modes, Fight or Flight. If attacked, we either hit the road like a Cro-Magnon outta hell, or dropped the gloves and had a throw-down.
No time for hugging there.
The only hugging we had back then was with our Moms and maybe our Dads (IE: family). As our ape-like-asses got older, and mating season rolled around, there might be some nest-talk after a lil round of bipedal ape-makin’.
Outside those things, it was Fight or Flight.
These days, with our bigger brains and stylish, yet sensible shoes, we can look beyond the Fight/ Flight thing. We can have deeper thoughts on the goodness of people and society, how our actions affect society, and how we can improve ourselves and society so that we evolve into better beings than we are.
But, that sounds like a lota work. Better to just to rule through fear and wealth. If we placate and subjugate society through mind-numbing entertainment and continual reminders of how terrible things are, then they’ll buy crap they don’t need on the Shopping Network and get that warm, fuzzy feeling when they see a kitten wrestling with a Great Dane on YouTube.
While the majority will mindlessly fall in line, there will be some who will not. They’ll fight back. Fighting inevitably leads to violence. No matter how noble your cause to open people’s minds, or reveal some terrifying truth, violence hits home better than pretty, B-level actresses pleading for your help and a little cash.
This kinda violence isn’t at your local 45 screen Googleplex, unless they SHOCK-of-SHOCKS, show a documentary! But that’s kinda rare. Nope, the real world violence that happens is on the news. Because, true violence, the one where real people really get hurt or killed, is the only violence all the panty-waists should be worrying about.
Real-world violence doesn’t just happen in African countries where we don’t have to watch(and thus ignore), it can happen in the next room, at your next door neighbours, a few cubicles over, at the playground, in the bathroom. True violence would rather not be seen by others. It preys on those who would rather take Flight than Fight, but can’t because they are cornered, trapped, or dealing with someone who they love or trust.
True violence is brutal and horrible. It should sicken us to see such acts. It should frighten us when it happens. It should stir us to do something to stop it.
A John Woo-style gun battle in a tea house is none of those things. Neither is some medieval knight slaying or mistreating others. The city of Los Angeles ravaged by aliens or mega-earthquakes can be startling, but if we watch a live feed from KTLA, it’s still there, sans-aliens, save the ones from Mexico. Although, you might see a car chase.
True violence is real.
Fictional movie/TV violence isn’t.
People are violent. Whether it’s because they feel wronged, want to control someone, or just lose it, they are violent. After they’ve done something terrible, they want to run, or blame someone else, like their abusive parents/ siblings/ or, the media/ entertainment. It becomes the modern version of Flight! If they can’t actually run or escape, blame whatever they can think of. If they don’t do it, others will do it for them. But, they can’t blame Angela Lansbury or “Murder, She Wrote”. The blame-game requires a darker, grittier, maybe vulgar or less mainstream reason. Marilyn Manson, Eminem, heavy metal, Dungeons & Dragons, etc.
Fictional characters usually have a reason for their violent acts. Even if there is no reason, that is the reason! But the character’s creator makes them like that. No matter how dark and deprived the fictional character, they usually pale in comparison to reality.
Hmm, there’s a thought. All those religious people out their, who propagate hatred and violence, maybe their God/ creator made them that way. Maybe all the Atheists and Agnostics don’t want to deal with that kind of violent nature.
Ok, I’m done.