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Monday, October 19, 2009

Killing Monsters

As a dad and pop-culture contributor, media violence and how it affects our kids is an important topic to me.

People who know me know I'm a big fan of pop-culture -- comic books, anime, action movies, and video games -- in some cases, I directly contribute to getting these things made. These same people also know I'm very protective of what my kids see and do -- which for me means not being over-protective of what they don't see, which could be doing them an equivalent (or in some cases, deeper) damage.

This may sound odd, but in his book, author Gerard Jones makes a very even-handed argument for age- and context-appropriate exposure to make-believe conflict and violence, and how demonizing and purging it from your home can have the opposite of the intended effect of "protecting your kids".

In an increasingly (and increasingly damaging) pseudo-politically correct world, kids are becoming shadows of what they should be as their personalities are beaten into any given institution's version of compliance, they're chastised for genuine (and appropriate) feelings of adventure, aggression, sexuality, or any of a myriad of facets that make them a "whole person".

I recommend this book as a wake-up opportunity for folks to rethink their views on media violence.

(And I recommend you ignore a lot of the editorial summaries of the book on Amazon -- at least at the time of this writing -- as they oversimplify the direction and intent of the book.)


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