I liked this post very much. It also links to the posts that got the conversation rolling.
Personally, I think the debate can be self-serving on all sides. Parents blame the media for not controlling their content, the media blames consumers for encouraging the product by purchasing it and the media claims the parents should take more responsibility, artists claim freedom of speech and then decry a decaying culture in which we take part.
The cure is more speech, not less. If I were a parents (and I'm not) I would be very careful and aware of what sort of media my child is exposed to, of course. But I also don't think that violence and sexuality in the arts and the media are unique to the culture at present: they may have taken different forms in the past, but the ideas were always present. Perhaps MORE present in behavior than in popular entertainment... systemic oppression is a form of violence and it was pretty much standard practice for women and minorities until only recent history began to tackle it. Still, humankind made its strives and good people emerged despite what they were being shown.
Let's remember, we're all thinking creatures. We are not simply a product of what we see. Or even what we make.
- Matthew Freeman is a Brooklyn based playwright with a BFA from Emerson College. His plays include THE DEATH OF KING ARTHUR, REASONS FOR MOVING, THE GREAT ESCAPE, THE AMERICANS, THE WHITE SWALLOW, AN INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR, THE MOST WONDERFUL LOVE, WHEN IS A CLOCK, GLEE CLUB, THAT OLD SOFT SHOE and BRANDYWINE DISTILLERY FIRE. He served as Assistant Producer and Senior Writer for the live webcast from Times Square on New Year's Eve 2010-2012. As a freelance writer, he has contributed to Gamespy, Premiere, Complex Magazine, Maxim Online, and MTV Magazine. His plays have been published by Playscripts, Inc., New York Theatre Experience, and Samuel French.