So What's the Harm?
Mark DanielsMark Daniels's Weblog
- 2009 Feb 05
No, not all men are charming—but evil—monsters, who seduce women with romance and empty promises, then cheat or beat those women into submission. Truth is, the vast majority of Lifetime® Movie Network’s viewership is women…LMN® apparently believes many women harbor that low view of men…so the network produces programs that reflect the theme. The numbers remain high enough, the advertising follows, so what's the problem?
Not all boys are stupid, drooling, girl-crazy animals; not all parents are detached, bumbling fools who eventually (and invariably) realize that their sage, 11-year-old daughters were right all along. Indeed: not all pre-teen girls have superior wisdom! That’s the fantasy world where many of the children watching shows like Nickelodeon's™ "Fairly OddParents" and "Drake and Josh" live, and indulging that perspective apparently drives ratings and revenue. But really...who's getting hurt?
Not every conservative is an unattractive, out-of-touch, holier-than-thou shill for big corporations, as not every liberal is a crazy-spending, self-aggrandizing abortion junkie. Yet, portraying people as such has swelled the viewership—and profits—of broadcast news operations for decades. With fewer people watching the networks, we can expect the trend to continue, and the divide to widen. So why be concerned?
Not every teenaged girl is eagerly promiscuous, not every Christian is a closeted psycho; thugs aren’t heroes, and authority figures aren’t the enemy, yet: perpetuating such dangerous stereotypes has kept the networks alive, far beyond their usefulness.
But really—what’s the harm?
Take a look at what’s happening in Washington, our schools, and our communities right now…then, you tell me.
Perhaps you, too, will go TV-free.
Mark Daniels is taking a break from viewing television during the month of February.