FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 5, 2008
“For many years, parents have worried about television’s glamorization of destructive sexual behavior. This important new report suggests another cause for concern: the de-glamorization of marriage. Statistics show that the overwhelming majority of Americans feel satisfied and fulfilled by their marriages – and the commonly repeated claim of a ‘50% divorce rate’ is a malevolent myth. In his new book, ‘Gross National Happiness,’ Professor Arthur Brooks of Syracuse University shows the consistently high levels of marital satisfaction, but on television matrimony is an institution that reduces, rather than increases, joy and pleasure. Moreover, the General Social Survey of the National Opinion Research Center (and countless other surveys of sexual behavior) show that married people in every age group report more sex -- and much more pleasurable sex -- than their single counterparts. The notion that sex outside of marriage is inherently more exciting, more important, more worthy as the subject of story-telling, is a toxic message for parents and children alike.
“By overstating the incidence and acceptability of cheating, the television industry tends to normalize behavior of which vast majorities disapprove. By exaggerating the prevalence of pre-marital, teenage sexuality the networks and cable companies suggest that kids who aren’t sexually experienced are missing out on one of life’s great and expected adventures. No one expects television to take the place of parents when it comes to imparting decent values to youngsters, but it’s by no means necessary for popular culture to undermine the messages of responsibility and self-control that most parents try to pass on to their children.”
To speak with a representative
from the Parents Television Council, please contact Kelly Oliver
(ext. 140) or Megan Franko (ext. 148) at (703) 683-5004.
The Parents Television Council™ (www.parentstv.org®)
is a non-partisan education organization advocating responsible entertainment.
It was founded in 1995 to ensure that children are not constantly assaulted by sex, violence
and profanity on television and in other media. This national
grassroots organization has more than 1.3 million members across the
United States, and works with television producers, broadcasters,
networks and sponsors in an effort to stem the flow of harmful and
negative messages targeted to children. The PTC also works with
elected and appointed government officials to enforce broadcast
decency standards. Most importantly, the PTC produces critical
research and publications documenting the dramatic increase in sex,
violence and profanity in entertainment. This information is
provided free of charge so parents can make informed viewing choices
for their own families.