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Are modern Children and teens victims of Western culture?

With the development of television, video games, social networks...modern convenience children and teens have gone through a radical change, from mostly respectful children and mainly and well brought up in pre-ww2 to evermore aggressive, rude and disrespectful Do you think that this is happening? And if so why is it happening?

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    Jul 19 2012: Going beyond Western kids, children everywhere are victimized by their very culture, any culture. There isn't any perfect society, and some percentage of kids will be abused in some fashion, even if it's "just" bad parenting (I quote to emphasize this as a lesser of many possible evils).

    To answer more directly, I agree that teens and even children/tweeners overall feel they have a voice these days, and I think it's good. Not when they whine about unimportant things or exhibit that over-entitled nonsense, but when something major happens or when an elephant in the room appears, they don't pretend it's not there. Not as often as in the 50's, say, when even divorce was a topic of stigma. Along with that is a higher number of kids who get away with things that would have earned them a right proper switching not too long ago. Spoiled brats untended turning into young hoodlums, etc. Too many parents aren't willing to step up to the fact that Young Graham really is a thug, or their sweet Cherine really is suicidal, etc., or have no clue how to cope and just pretend it away.
    • Jul 20 2012: I completely agree with your first paragraph. This use of 'victim' is, IMHO, a poor choice. If we are victims of our culture then we are certainly victims of imperfect parents, imperfect schools, imperfect governments, etc. We are certainly influenced by all aspects of our environment, but using the word victimized is just too harsh.
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    Jul 19 2012: While I currently teach mostly adults, I have spent the last eight days from 9-2:30 each week day teaching twenty adolescents, as I do every summer. They come from twenty different schools in the metropolitan area.
    I am sure they watch television, play video games, and some may participate in social networks.
    They are respectful, courteous, cooperative, and energetic. Prior to this
    I taught adolescents for about ten years (until a couple of years ago) in an urban public school district. I also did not find those young people to be at all as you have described them.
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      Jul 19 2012: How do Fritzie
      I would say you have been very lucky in your dealings with that amount of youth. That might be a gilmer of hope for us yet. :-)
  • Jul 20 2012: I do not think that (video) games and social networks are specific to Western culture. Humans love to play and socialize for centuries. It is part of our nature.

    I also see it natural that teens, to some degree, revolt against their parents and want to do things their way. It has always been that case and if it is not extreme I see it being a part of natural and healthy development.

    What I do agree is the fact that some media esp. TV do not provide good messages and guidelines for young people with their "reality shows" based on atypical and weird situations and social contexts.

    I think it all comes down to giving young people good education and opportunities to use their skills and abilities.

    Because of the Internet young people can now better communicate, learn, socialize and be part of larger community. They have now more freedom, ca be independent, responsible and make informed decisions. I see this is as a very positive trend.

    Of course there are always exceptions. cheers
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    Jul 19 2012: The media does have its influences. Both negative and positive. Your question seems to present western culture as entirely bad because you asked if young people are 'victims'.

    I think the greater responsibility falls on the parents. Even if there was no mass media, children are still exposed to a diversity of influences in the society. It is the responsibility of parents to train, teach and guide their children so that they would make right choices and imbibe positive values.
    What we see in recent years is failure of parenting. Irresponsible lifestyle and thoughtless choices leads to unwanted pregnancy; and infidelity or immorality as promoted by popular culture also usually leads to broken homes.

    Bad parents usually brings out the worst in children.
    Like Jesus says "If the blind leads the blind, they will both fall into the ditch."

    So, yes, it all depends of leadership in the family.
  • Aug 17 2012: Television was a big-huge culprit.
    I once heard it was the Roman govt's ways of keepin' em full and entertained: "Bread & circus" . (Why couldn't t.v.s have been designed to be more like tranceivers? They probably could have.)

    It's what they see in "how-to" be social. Mignon McLaughlin said, "Children lack morality, but they also lack fake morality." They see it in the systematic, unnatural, dry ways in which we follow protocols without joy or interest - not even interest in others; this also makes them wonder about their own value. They see violence & vulgarity in their lives (t.v.), and no one ever mentions respect.
    And we've all grown up immersed in this by now; so it's not about kids - Occidentals are all victims of Western culture.
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    Jul 22 2012: Huge and interesting question - especially the 'post- WW2' part. I guess I would, to be brief, ask: Why does that stuff sell? Because is resonates with the viewer (purchaser). Why does it resonate with the viewer/purchaser? Because what they see is everything they're not, but wish they were. I believe much research is done to provide the content and packaging of these programs to appeal to the viewer/purchaser (don't forget porn). Repressive societies, societies that love control and loathe freedom, have no tolerance for the 'messiness' that such freedoms bring. This is happening in Western and free societies because, in my opinion, we were/are heavily repressed personally and socially, and are breaking away and demanding to live in our own way - and finding it valuable for society as a whole. The pendulum may have swung too far to anger and baseness for many, but many others are finding who they truly are while in development, throught the 'messiness' of error and experimentation. Hopefully, they will carry on this freedom of self-discovery and expression and creativity as they become the new leaders of what we've left behind. After that, discover the root causes of the impetus of such angry and base behaviors and make the necessary social adjustments to minimize their need to be expressed in the first place. But again, that's just my opinion.
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    Jul 19 2012: I think it has more to do with the fading of the work ethic and the entitlement mentality.
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    Jul 19 2012: Howdy Spencer
    I would have to agree with Mr. Anjorin but add to his statement. Seams to me that the parents are trying to be friends to there kids and buy there love. Which ain't never worked as far as buying love. Then there's the friend thing. They must realize there not there to be friends they have a job to do and failing to do it is a great injustice to the child.
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    Jul 19 2012: I think it's more a case that teens are learning to speak out. Pre WW2 children were seen but not heard. Nowadays if we see something wrong we're going to tell you it's wrong and not sit in silence.