However, there have been numerous articles and research conducted that shows the negative effects of television on children. It has been stated that “watching a single violent program can increase aggressiveness” in children (American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 2002). Even cartoons have some form of violence.
When we see Tom and Jerry chasing each other and hitting each other on the head with a mallet or a hammer, they normally survive this and children tend to think that its play, that the next person will survive it like Gerry does each time. In reality, when a child hits another child with a mallet or a hammer on the head, or imitate a wrestling move they saw on TV, the repercussions are dangerous if not fatal (Kernshaw 2007). So if violent television shows have this effect on children, would it be possible to say that it can also influence good behavior?
“Designated Driver” was a television-based campaign started by the Harvard School of Public Health that targeted young adults about the dangers of driving under the influence. (Harvard) They began the campaign in 1988. By 1998, they estimated that almost 50,000 lives were saved because of the campaign together with the community’s efforts to impose stricter guidelines and penalties. Of course, the target audience for this campaign was young adults. And it worked. The principles are still the same if applied to younger children.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says “children older than 2 should watch no more than 1 to 2 hours a day of quality programming.” The AAP further adds that “children under age 2 should have no "screen time", like TV, DVDs or videotapes, computers, or video games, at all.” (Jordan et al 2006)
On the other hand, we have to consider the case to case basis as shown by Ariel Gore in her article “TV can be a Good Parent.” Ariel points out that single mothers have been “helped” by the