When "entertainment" violence is marketed to children as it is every
day through television, video games, movies, music, toys and other media -- it is neither
innocuous nor harmless.
The scientific consensus is clear: "The conclusion of the public health community,
based on over 30 years of research, is that viewing entertainment violence can lead to
increases in aggressive attitudes, values and behavior, particularly in children,"
according a Joint Statement signed
by representatives of six public health in July 26, 2000 and presented to Congress. This
Statement was signed by the American Medical Association, the American Academy of
Pediatrics, the American Psychological Association, the American Academy of Child &
Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Psychiatric Association and the American Academy of
While the entertainment industry pays its own consultants and researchers to deny the
overwhelming scientific consensus, almost every public health and education organization
has now developed a Policy
Statement warning about the dangers of marketing media violence to children.
And while most of the long-term research has focused on television violence
which is a passive viewing of violence -- preliminary studies indicate that the negative
impact of interactive violence may be "significantly more severe than that wrought by
television, movies or music," according to the Joint Statement.
In this section, we have gathered some articles, research and related information
dealing with the marketing of violence to children through video games, movies and music.
Our concern is only with the marketing of violence to children: we do not support
censorship or any limits on the First Amendment. (Click on the following link to learn
more about First Amendment
April 9, 2003
"There is a growing body of hard and verifiable evidence that suggests
the violent and sexual content of entertainment media can be harmful to children's
Brownback at a hearing on the Neurobiological Research and the Impact of Media. "Scientific
research is clearly showing that watching violence makes people more violent and
not just at the time they watch the violence, that is, not just on the school yard as
children, but years later, as adults. Many of us are already concerned about our society
and our culture today what happens when this generation grows up?"
Additional testimony from this hearing is at
July 25, 2001
Lion & Lamb member Laura Smit testifies before the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee.
"This hearing is intended to consider the need for a universal
ratings system... Lets start with the alphabet soup that parents are now required to
memorize. For the movies, we have G, PG, PG-13, R, NC-17. For
television, we have: TV-Y, TV-Y7, TV-G, TV-PG, TV14, and TV-MA. For video games, we
have 'E' for Everyone, 'T' for Teen, 'M' for Mature, 'RP' for Rating Pending and
AO for Adult Only. The music industry has a one-size-fits-all 'Parental
July 20, 2001
Lion & Lamb executive director Daphne White testifies before a Congressional oversight committee.
"As a parent, I can tell you that our children are still exposed to violent
entertainment every single day. Industry groups will tell you that they have curbed all
their marketing abuses, but parents will confirm that the problem is far from
- Six national public health organizations-- including the American Medical Association
(AMA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)-- issued a joint statement confirming that violent video games, movies and music
lead to increased aggressive behavior, particularly in children.
- The Influence of Media Violence on Youth by
Craig Anderson, Leonard Berkowitz, Edward Donnerstein, L. Rowell Huessman, James D.
Johnson, Daniel Linz, Neil Malamuth and Ellen Wartella in Psychological
Science in the Public Interest, December 2003.
(This paper was written by an eight-member expert panel put together by the National
Institute of Mental Health, and should have been included in the 2000 Surgeon General's
report on youth violence. Since the Surgeon General decided not to include this
paper as a chapter in his report, the authors have now updated their findings and
published them independently in a peer-reviewd journal.)
For more information related to media violence issues, see
Introduction || Ratings Issues || Video Games
Movies || Television ||
Miscellaneous Interesting Facts