January 14, 2010

Stand Up for Childhood Innocence

For some time now, I have personally held the conviction that American children are being robbed of their childhood. It seems to be happening on an ever increasing scale. Children are bombarded with inappropriate advertising, games, and television programming; daily, they are "attacked" by a consumerism that diminishes the psychological wellbeing and quality of life that they might otherwise enjoy.

Commercial advertising tells children that their value lies in value of their possessions, and they will not be happy unless they own name-brand toys and products. The latest trend I have discovered is that of cartoons and games which promote violence, sexual promiscuity, and women as sexual objects. While I was not so naïve as to be unaware of their existence, I was, however, shocked at the age of the children at which these games are targeted.

Just recently, I read how Nickelodeon and even Nick Jr. (which is aimed at preschoolers), host web links to Addictinggames.com, a website which features games such as Sorority Panty Raid, Perry the Sneak where young boys play a peeping Tom, and Naughty Classroom where you misbehave to cause a fantasy teacher in revealing clothing to bend over for objects or rip her skirt. Other games feature excessive violence and drunken characters cutting themselves. The article asks people to take a stand against the inappropriate material being pushed at children.

Once I got over my disgust for the implications, I was glad to know that someone was fighting back. Not only were they spreading the word through the article, but also information on how to contact these companies and request that they stop supporting the inappropriate material. I wanted to spread the word, and encourage people to reclaim childhood innocence for our future generations.

If you are interested in taking action on this issue, please go to www.commercialexploitation.org/actions/nicknaughtygames.html or for more information email the Campaign for Commercial-Free-Childhood at ccfc@jbcc.harvard.edu.

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