The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) had released new guidelines assuming that watching TV is a bad idea for kids. Ariel Gore, being a single mother struggling to pay her rents with her unsatisfied wage, takes her voice to disapprove with the AAP’s new approach. Accompanying her argument with her personal life, she opens up about the difference in time when she was a kid and now when she is a mom. When she was a kid, the rent bills were minimal and her mother had a group of friends who helped each other without hesitation with their kids. However, she tells that she has no advantages like her mom had.
Gore agrees that babies and toddlers have a critical need for direct interactions with actual people but she solely disagrees that exposing such young minds to TV programs should be discouraged. She feels that kids are able of interacting with their parents and caregivers even while watching TV. There are shows that help children to use their cognitive skills in a fun setting improvising their all round interacting behavior. The key is not to attack those shows but to warn parents that they shouldn’t watch violent and inappropriate shows in front of the young ones.
The AAP has extended their TV protest to asking questions about media consumptions at annual checkups of the kids. Gore admits that TV is not the greatest thing in the world for little kids but the assumptions AAP has made saddens her for only visualizing the stay-at-home moms, with a partner or other supportive people in nurturing the kids. Before ending her arguments, Gore puts forward the demands that needs to be viewed before the policy gets furnished- that TV should replace the culture of war and violence with better educational programmings, that people be provided with living-wage-jobs, government salaries for stay-at-home moms, and minimal expenditures on rents with supportive community to raise children. Till then, she insists the prosperity of TV for parenting children like hers.
TV has always been a subject of conspiracy among people in whether to admire its positive influence or to criticize the negatives. Ariel Gore exclaims that TV is not the most admirable thing yet its support in nurturing the kids is undeniable. TV not only influences children but also uplifts their creativity. Some TV shows are directed towards pulling the cognitive skills of kids and merging their interactions with the actual people and those inside the TV world. It is the presence of these shows that parents remain unworried about what their children are doing when they’re not at home. The generation today has moved ahead in independent living and over expenditures. To meet up with the demanding generation and also provide absolute care to the children, TV has been inevitable. Gore represents the much sophisticated and debatable influence of TV in the nurturing of kids and states that TV plays a background role of a co-parent in this fast forward living.
Ariel Gore is exceptional with remarking the easiness and simplifications TV has created in the lives of overburdened mothers today. Of course, TV may act as a co-parent to those kids whose moms have jobs to hold and bills to pay. Yes, TV is a break for those stressed out moms who have to come home to take care of their kids. However, TV as a co-parent is not so easy to justify. At some point, the decisions put by the AAP might struck as correct actions to some people, as to the doctors shown in Gore’s essay. Children are too sensible and the things TV broadcast may not always create positive vibes among them. To be honest, wars and violence are a part of TV as they are part of the world. Apart from entertaining and creative shows, TV is a source of news broadcasting the wrongs and violence our world is facing everyday. It is quite absurd to wish that TV only broadcasts the brighter side of the world. These violent acts, on the other hand, disturb the young nourishing minds, and that is where Gore’s exceptional remarks fail and the AAP’s guidelines outshine.
The title of the essay itself makes the readers clear about the plot and persuasions held by Ariel Gore. Television, when used properly, can be a great instructor to the kids as well as a time off for the exhausted parents. This essay marks the underlying power of television and its influence throughout the world. The assumptions that scientists have made about TV victimizing the creativity of kids may not practically be true as there exist many shows which not only boosts creativity among kids but also their interactions with the virtual and real people. TV is a form of modern solution to the busy parents having a hard time nurturing their kids.
Nissani, Moti and Shreedhar Lohani. TV Can Be A Good Parent. Ekta Publication, 2013.