Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Family Guy: Lowering the Collective IQ of Americans One Show At a Time

Studies have been done examining the effects of cartoon violence on children. Research conducted by the American Psychological Association concludes that "an average twelve-year- old has seen 8,000 murders and 100,000 acts of violence on network television."

Family Guy, a cartoon aimed at adults, is a raunchy show with politically charged undertones. This show uses humor as a vehicle for persuasion. The content on Family Guy reminds me of WWII propaganda films in Nazi Germany. Maybe it is different subject matter, but it is the same idea: target groups in society and mock religions in an effort to spread a certain mindset.

How can violent, hate-filled cartoons targeting adult audiences not have a negative impact on American society? The messages in Family Guy trivialize violence and are anti-Christian. Although it seems appealingly funny, adults with character should have the wherewith all to boycott watching it.

The following summary of a recent episode mocking Terri Shiavo aired on Sunday night, March 21st at 9:00 p.m. EDT/ 8:00 p.m. CDT on Fox.

"Terri Shiavo, the Musical" is where Stewie dresses up as an electrical plug while the preschool class sings: "Only one solution, pull the plug, her brains are like mashed potatoes and she is kind of alive-o." The children who are acting as her doctor and husband say, "She is a vegetable." Another child says, "I hate vegetables!" and the audience/parents all laugh at this disturbing scene.

This episode also included:
• Peter is also naked in a large water fountain, while riding a dolphin and a dolphin licks Peter's nipple in his female boss' fantasy.
• Daughter, Meg, tells parents that she has been sexually harassed by her teacher and the parents act as if they do not care.
• A couple of characters on the show tell Peter it is ok to hit a girl when he tells them his female boss is sexually harassing him.
• Peter's boss tries to commit suicide.


-Above summary taken from Onemillionmoms.org

Several episodes of Family Guy mock Jesus.

The Sunday, August 16, 2009, 9:00 PM EDT episode of Family Guy entitled "I Dream of Jesus:"

Mocked His crucifixion and resurrection when Peter compared Jesus' sacrifice to the trials he experienced one night that he and his buddies got very drunk.
• Belittled Judas' betrayal of Jesus when the Jesus character joked about it.
• Mocked the importance of the miracles Jesus performed when the character Jesus tripled the breast size of Peter's wife.
• Suggested that the Bible is not important to Jesus when the character Jesus asked "What Word?" after Peter said "You've returned to bring us the Good Word."
• Portrayed Jesus as a liar for denying who he was three times, out of touch for not interacting with people and a wimp for not knowing His calling.
• Compared Jesus revealing Himself to man to Chris exposing himself in school.



-above summary taken from Onemilliondads.org

I'm the first person to enjoy a good laugh, however this is not funny content. I admit that when I have control of the remote, I watch Law and Order, SpongeBob SquarePants, The Office, late-night repeats of Scrubs or whatever is on The Food Network. I know that most of these shows dance on the line of appropriate content and occasionally cross it. However, Family Guy clearly crosses that line over and over again, blatantly insulting the values and religious beliefs of many Americans. What is the creator of this show, Seth MacFarlane, thinking? What is his motive, other than to make a buck? MacFarlane is using this cartoon to spread hate under the guise of humor. He is attempting to trivialize repulsive attitudes and behavior.

If you agree that this show is disgusting, you can find out ways to protest it at Onemillionmoms.org, or Onemilliondads.org . I'd love to hear your thoughts on Family Guy.



Read more at:
Suite101: How TV Violence Controls Kids' Minds: Children's Viewing of Violent TV is Linked to Later Aggression

TV and Film Violence Study

16 comments:

rhymeswithplague said...

I have never watched the show and I never will. More and more we watch the Food Network and HGTV....

Read the 15th chapter of St. John's Gospel sometime.

But I like Dog the Bounty Hunter (except for the coarse language which is bleeped out) on A&E (I know, call me crazy)....

Putz said...

youre crazy, bob

Loren Christie said...

Well, I would have figured you like the Dog show if you like reading the pet posts here. As a person who watches SpongeBob often for fun and occasionally forgets her children's names, I am not a fair judge of sanity. However, you both have to be a little bit crazy to follow this blog. Don't worry, crazy is the new "interesting." As ususal, thanks for commenting here!

Anonymous said...

I for one am a fan of Family Guy because of its very twisted humor. Yes, I will agree that it does cross the line at times (even I thought "Shiavo: The Musical" was in poor taste).

I think there are too many people trying to save us from ourselves when they try to tell us we should not watch it (or that Fox et. al. should not be allowed to broadcast it) because it does not send a message we agree with.

We live in America and the bottom line is if you don't like it, change the channel. There is no one forcing you to watch it.

For the most part, I think people see it for what it is - parody and social commentary filtered through a very twisted (and likely offending) point of view, which is like any other shock TV/radio/movie/music out there.

GT

Loren Christie said...

Sure, G. I agree with the- don't like it, change the channel- and freedom of speech stuff. And the show is very twisted. The anti-Jesus content doesn't bother you at all?! I'm kind of surprised. If a serial killer wrote and produced a cartoon for television that would be a dangerous thing, because of the volume of Americans he/she would reach with a twisted message. If family guy parodied the Holocaust, attacked the Muslim faith, or even promoted violence against pets, people would be up in arms. It seems that it is socially acceptable for the media to attack the disabled, the elderly, and Christians in this country- especially Catholics. People have a right to stand up for decency and character just as much as Seth MacFarlane has the right to make a buck off of writing trash for prime time television. We could, as the television-watching public, send him a message by boycotting Family Guy if enough people took a stand against it. I hope you put on SpongeBob instead and join me. :)

Anonymous said...

It's rare that something in entertainment realm rises to the point that I feel the need to actively boycott it. As a point of reference, two things that do - anyone that I find out is on the "Free Mumia" bandwagon (don't actively look for it, but when it crosses my path, they get added to the list) and anything involving "Hanoi" Jane Fonda. These are things that offend me personally. Family Guy doesn't because I see it for what it is. Parody.

And yes, you are right that the Catholics/Christians do take a pounding from the media in general. But when I turn on the news (as recently as today) and see how the Vatican and other Catholic organizations have apparently turned a blind eye to sexual abuses, I really don't lose sleep over the organization of the Catholic church being a target (but then again, I take serious issue with the whole concept of organized religion, but that is another rant for another time). As watcher of the show, I can tell you that it has made some very off-color Jewish jokes - jokes that have been known to bring a smile to my wife's face (who is Jewish).

Do you think The Producers, one of Mel Brooks' finest films, should be boycotted because Hitler, one of history's greatest evils, was turned into a comedic, whimsical character?

And honestly, I wish more would take a stand and target the Muslim community instead of hiding from it. I actively chose NOT to spend any money on 2012 for this reason. I found it disturbing that the producers saw no issue in showing the distruction of some very iconic Catholic landmarks, but refused to blow up that cube (the hajj, I believe it is called) onscreen that Muslims go to for their pilgrimage because one of the producers was afraid he would be a target of death threats like those Danish cartoonists.

So I do make my stands here and there when it is something that I find to cross that line as it relates to my point of view of the world. I have seen nothing so over-the-top offensive in The Family Guy that would lead to my withdrawal of support for it.

GT

Loren Christie said...

I don't think Hitler is funny at all. Movies have portrayed the concept of the devil as a comic character as well. Sure, the Catholic Church is flawed, as is all of humanity. I asked you if the way Family Guy slanders Jesus bothers you. I guess it doesn't and we all have free will when it comes to thoughts and actions. Thanks for commenting.

Daily Grace said...

Loren,

Thank you for your comments. I agree with you and I commend your courageous voice.

God be with you and your family.

Loren Christie said...

Daily Grace, Thanks for commenting here.

rhymeswithplague said...

Loren, Loren, Loren, Dog The Bounty Hunter is not a show about canines.

Hell Hound said...

Phew! I thought it was a dog horror film.

Sandra said...

I totally agree. I have never watched a full episode of this trash. I have, however, overheard & seen snippets of it when my teenage sons were watching it! They know that I DO NOT approve of this show, and they have sinced gone on to other shows, which I hope are somewhat better. The few moments that I have seen the show, I was afraid that I was going to get struck down! Family Guy is pure trash.

Loren Christie said...

Hi Sandra. Thanks for commenting.

Anonymous said...

i'm new... hope to brief nearly more oftentimes!

Loren Christie said...

Hi Anonymous, welcome to the blog.

Anonymous said...

It humor if you take offense to dry humor then dont watch t.v. period, its for entertainment purposes only if you think its serious then you have no sense of humor.

Dear Internet Traveler,

Welcome to my writer's blog, started about six years ago for fun. Over time, the writing I have posted has ranged from personal reflection, to Long Island history research, to tall tales for my own amusement, to feature articles for local newspapers. As you can see from topics listed here, I travel in many mental directions in regard to interests. Click on the tabs and labels to explore my strange mind which senses that you may be having a criss-cross day. If so, perhaps this blog will distract you. However, please note that if you tell me my blog is beautiful just to get me to advertise rhinoplasty surgery and cheap drugs from Canada in your comment, I will ask the gods to give you a tail that cannot be concealed.

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Loren Christie

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