Those who proclaim that television is harming society may be too quick to judge television, in fact in some ways TV can help society. One only has to look at programs such as Americas Most Wanted and Unsolved Mysteries, they may often be on the corny side, however Americas Most Wanted has helped authorities capture many wanted fugitives.
News programs have gotten more and more graphic in recent years, but the amount of information given on the news has increased substaintially as well. As a nation, we watched the Gulf War, the Clinton Impechment proceedings, the Clarence Thomas hearings and several other pivotal news stories that we otherwise would not have had such access to without television.
Childrens shows run the gamut from programs such as Power Rangers to Sesame Street. Few would argue that shows such as Sesame Street and Mr. Rogers Neighborhood are damaging our youth. With a little parental supervision the harmful aspects of television can be avoided, there are useful and educational shows available for children to watch. Some of my nephews favorite shows are Arthur, Blues Clues, Sesame Street, hes even at an age now where he will tell me to change the channel when its time for Arthur to come on. Some critics have said that advertisers are brainwashing our children, that may be true on some level. However, ultimately its not the child that runs out to Toys R Us and purchases the toys that are hocked constantly on television; the parents have control of the checkbook and should therefore establish some rules about commercials. Unfortunatley, advertisements are unavoidable these days, they are everywhere, not just TV, they can be heard on the radio, there are billboards everywhere you look. Turning the television off is not going to shelter a child from advertisements.
Sure, there are shows such as Jerry Springer or Survivor, these shows are not meant to harm society, but entertain and really, isnt that what television is about, entertainment?