Tuesday, July 08, 2008

I am a Draconian Parent (or why Disney Channel is of the Devil)

My assumption years ago was that anything on the Disney Channel was safe for children. I have found this not to be the case. Disney seems to populate their station with teen dramas targeted to pre-teens. I think this marketing has given us some undesirable results.

I first started to notice it last summer when my daughter was in the third grade. Many of the girls her age spoke horribly to one another and to adults. They were running around trying to stir up drama about who liked who and had so and so kissed you know who yet.

Third Grade?? Where was this coming from?

My wife and I have always been pretty strict with our children's TV viewing. They basically never watch live TV and we encourage them to watch educational stuff or family oriented shows. Kathryn has petitioned for the Disney Channel for a long time, but I have limited basic cable so that is not even an option.

Last summer, I discovered why that is a good thing.

We were staying at a hotel for an out of state wedding. While I played cards with my wife and parents, Kathryn found the Disney Channel. I watched the Suite Life of Zack and Cody out of the corner of my eye. In this episode, the two pre-teen brothers were fighting over a girl. The girl was the "girlfriend" of the one brother but the other was going to have to kiss her for a play. The pre-pubescent boys were ready to go to blows over kissing a girl. The next show had a bunch of pre-teen and early teen girls backstabbing each other over a boy.

After the kids went to bed, I checked out some more Disney shows. It seemed they all focused on teen and pre-teen relationship drama. Few of them offered any redeeming qualities by resolving these matters in a kind fashion. The characters usually only did the right thing once they were forced into it. Many of the young girls in these shows dressed like they were going to a bar. Every adult character seemed to be a complete buffoon or overgrown child.

I still have limited basic cable but if we ever decide to upgrade, for the sake of my kids I will be locking out the Disney Channel.

7 comments:

societyvs said...

I am not a fan of Disney since I seen a documentary on the movies they have been doing - the cartoon ones. It seems the role they give to women is always less then the best one they could give...also allow men to be pretty horrible at the sake of the woman.

Screw Disney!

Redlefty said...

We don't even get basic cable! Just rabbit ears here.

We'd be all about Disneyworld someday, but we're "meh" on the TV channel. Like you, we've only seen it in hotels.

Adam Gonnerman said...

My kids watch too much Disney. I'm not strict enough to shut it down completely (my parents didn't block a lot of things and I came out relatively okay), but I've had frequent, long talks with my daughter especially about what she's viewing. Sometimes she backtalks or speaks a certain sassy way and I remind her that we are not living on the Disney Channel. In the real world most adults in her life know better than she does, and she has no right to speak insolently with her elders.

I think I'll have another chat with her tonight....

Mike said...

Andrew ~ I found my way here from Kay's blog. Interesting stuff, especially now since I am a father. I am not into the teen-bopper stuff and we don't watch a lot of T.V. around here anyway.

As far as your question about tags, there is a line at the bottom of your posts when you write them called tags. In this, you can write descriptive words to describe your posts. For instance for this post you can use, kids, disney, teenagers, television, sass, life etc, etc, etc....

The blogosphere gives the ability to search for entries based on tags and a lot of people look for those.

Mike said...

Sorry. On Google they are called labels but they work the same.

Andrew said...

"Screw Disney!"

Society - If you have not seen "What would Jesus buy?" yet, I highly encourage it.

Joe said...

Too right. Bloody corporations taking over the world and feeding our children crap... mumble, mumble, moan, moan.

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