Can you imagine a real noisy neighbor coming into your house and start
talking about nonsense and hurting everybody in the house? You would make him get out of
the house right away, right? But what about television? Television has taken form of that
crazy neighbor and is affecting everyone on earth in a dangerous way. It is a drug, a time
waster, a money waster. It rots people's minds and affects their health.
Television is a time and money waster. As the statistics show, the
average American watches 3 hours 44 minutes of television everyday. In a 65-year life, a
person would have watched 9 years of television. And by the age of 65, a person would have
seen 2 million commercials. 82% of Americans believe that they buy way more things than
they actually need. No wonder why!
This time waster also affects family life. The average child watches
television for 1,680 minutes a week, while spending only 38.5 minutes in meaningful
conversation with his parents.
People become addicted to television as people do to drugs. But it is
more dangerous than a drug. It rots people's minds, promotes violence and destroys -- not
just an individual -- but cultures and nations. The statistics say that by the age of 18,
a child would have seen 200,000 violent acts, which 79% of Americans believe causes
real-life mayhem. Television violence is the single most significant factor contributing
to violence in America. A poll taken in 1995 reported that children said that what they
see on television encourages violence and aggressive behavior.
Since children watch too much television, reports say that up to 50%
of the nation's school children are not getting enough exercise to develop healthy hearts
and lungs. Also 40% of 5 to 8 year olds show at least one risk for heart disease. In the
90's, the number of severely overweight children has become more than twice the number of
severely overweight children in the 60's. The main reason for this is inactivity. Doctors
say that the easiest way to reduce inactivity is to turn off the television because almost
anything else uses more energy than watching television.
Since people are so addicted to television, turning it off for just a
week seems very hard. But if it was something else, and had visible dangers, people would
get far from it. So, should the addiction to television stop us from turning it off?