We are in the midst of a technological revolution and in the midst of globalization, a combination of two social phenomena which is essential to the fact that there has never been such a wide range of cultural leisure activities. As always, the initial euphoria of these media gave way to regulation, taking into account the great power that these media can exercise over the public, And even more in its children’s audience.
So the mythical Lucky Luke cigar became a healthy pic, the guns of the Spiderman villains didn’t shoot bullets, but dizzying lightning bolts (or something like that) and the ninja turtles became the hero turtles, all of them. in favor of limiting excuses for tobacco, weapons or violence in content aimed at children. The situation is complicated if one pays attention to the large number of cartoons that have been criticized and censored for promoting racial stereotypes, most notably by the almighty Disney.
Raise awareness among children through the media
And it is true that the promotion of stereotypes can be as damaging as that of drugs. Awareness of what we see in the media In terms of race or gender, it is developing, but more subtle archetypes continue to appear frequently. In Friends, there is more than one scene where the boxed laugh is activated by the mere appearance of an overweight dancing character, and in The Big Bang Theory, there are more than two occasions where the protagonists are simply laughing. using scientific terms and are “smart” and therefore “rare”.
Faced with this situation, by following the path we have taken so far, we should limit the emergence of such stereotypes on the screen, but where would we place the limit? Is it possible for all minorities to be represented in all works of art? Can the drama be affected if certain elements are dropped? What do we do with animated films from before this time and their thousands of stereotypes? And above all: through this “censorship”, Are we missing the opportunity to educate in values?
The importance of covisionado
Works of fiction reflect their time and generally represent the audience to which they are shown. In that sense, no matter how much we protect children from their influence, sooner or later they will find it in their own lives. Therefore, cartoons give us the opportunity to work in a controlled context, in a “laboratory”, before children are confronted with the dangers that these stereotypes create in the real world.
From this point of view, covisionado acquires great importance, A technique that involves an adult accompanying the child on their adventure, contextualizing all of those guidelines which, although they may work in fiction, we understand are not appropriate in society.
Special mention deserves the humor, which often resorts to stereotypes or politically incorrect issues seeking to make people laugh, either through socially shared elements, as in monologues (“mothers-in-law and sons-in-law do not ‘hear not’) or by rejection or daring (The Family Guy, The Simpsons).
Instead of censoring this humor, kids can learn that what can make fun of TV shouldn’t actually be done and, in fact, part of the reason she laughs at television is because she doesn’t turn it into reality.
Violence and television
Following this logic, something similar happens with firearms. Fiction or play is an ideal context for the child to develop his creativity, and limiting it by prohibiting the use of certain elements can be an obstacle for him.
So just as we see Superman fly without fear of our children being thrown out the window, we should be able to see Captain Haddock drunk without fear that they will develop alcoholism. Yes, it is true that the second example is less obvious to them because it is not subject to the laws of physics, and yes, obviously embodies a high risk for the development of its values if he is allowed to camp in the air … but this is precisely where the role of parents and educators comes into play, exercising covisionado in the face of violent, sexual or stereotypical content.
After all, acting as guardians of morality without leaving controversial elements contextualized that boys and girls will sooner or later find is the most direct way for them to accept them without more as accurate descriptions of reality.