Black Liberation Essay

Black Liberation Term paper

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The African American Representation in the Media and the Impression it leaves on Black Children Young children are highly impressionable. Children look at their role models such as their parents/guardians to guide them into being responsible, hard working, law-abiding citizens. Children usually view their parents/guardians as their primary representation of their culture. Little boys admire their fathers as a strong and influential presence, which they want, emulates. According to Sigmund Freud’s Oedipal conflict, boys desire their mother and despise their father. “The boy views the father as a rivals and hold a secret wish to kill him. However they view their father as all-powerful, this takes the form of castration anxiety. In order to overcome this they begin to identify with their father, attempting to be as similar to their father as possible (Feldman, Robert S., 1998, p.228). Little girls emulate their mothers who they (little girls) believe are hard working, organized, and fashionable. “Girls, according to Freud go through a similar process. They begin to feel sexual attraction toward their fathers and experience penis envy, which is the same as the Oedipal conflict (only with girls) (Feldman, 1998, p.288). In today’s society this has changed children rarely look to their parents/guardians as their primary example of what they would like to be when they reach their age. “Piaget suggests that the growth in children’s understanding of their world can be explained by two basic principals, assimilation and accommodation. Assimilation is the process in terms of their understanding in terms of their cognitive development and way of thinking. In contrast accommodation refers to their current stage of cognitive development and way of thinking (Feldman, 1998, p. 24). Therefore instead of children viewing their parents as their primary representation towards the media. The media becomes their teacher and guides of who they want to be in life. Unfortunately, children are led astray by these images in which they view and hold as a prime example. One such group, which is lead astray by the representation of their group, is African Americans. The African American group is represented in a negative manner and this representation has a negative to even a detrimental influence on children who view constant images of their group being associated with violent behaviors, images/ideas of being inferior to Caucasians, and being predestined to a life of poverty. These extremely negative images are everywhere from television to printed media. This reporter will discuss The Radical School of Black Psychology and its theory being a good solution to the African American representation in the media. The reporter will also discuss the constant images presented to African American children and the theoretical relief found in the radical school. “Every four hours a black child is murdered in the United States, says Glenda Hatchett, chief presiding judge of the Fulton Country Juvenile Court in Atlanta “ (Kinnon, 1999, p.126). Also, “forty-six percent of juveniles in correctional facilities are black, according to a study by the United States Justice Departments office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention” (Kinnon). The research shows this percentage of children is outrageously high since Kinnon states Black children make up only fifteen percent of Americans’ youth population. These statistics suggest some force affects African American children. The force is idealized and held as a primary source in the cognitive thinking of black children. The Rev. Jessie L. Jackson says, “violent movies, violent video games, and violent music which say it is imitating reality when in fact it is creating reality (Kinnon). Black Children are listening to violent music from artists such as “Notorious B.I.G.” “TUPAC”, and “ONYX”. African American children believe they can identify with the lyrics (lyrics of sex, drugs, and violence) these artists provide because they are Black. African American children believe since these artists are black they know exactly what black children are experiencing in their lives. However, this is sadly not the case because not all Black children experience sex, drugs, and violence in their environment. Also these images should not be glorified for those Black children who experience them (sex, drugs and violence). These images depicted on television, heard in music, viewed in magazines, newspapers, and movies all have negative lasting impressions on African American children. A 12-year-old child in Michigan was charged for murder and a 9-year-old Child in California was charged for second-degree murder. Both children are being charged as adults for these crimes. The sad fact of these stories are young Black children are killing other children. These children who are committing these crimes do not realize the severity of their action. For a child to muster enough courage in pulling a trigger of a gun and severely harming another child is proof that Black children are being desensitized to the violence around them by culture they view in the media. “Young people don’t fully understand what it is they are doing,” says, Dr. Robert Newly, professor and chair of Central Michigan University’ sociology anthropology and social work department. “It seems to be a Hollywood script as opposed to real life” (Kinnon). Children feel that harming another child is not serious. They think life is one big fantasy as seen in the media. Through violence, children are immensely affected in a negative manner. Violence is showed as an everyday affair in the life of the African American child. The media pours constant images of violence, violence that is seen by Black children as “cool fantasy”. Black children are then desensitized to the violence, which makes it easier for them to perceive, hence committing violent crimes. This shows that the media representation of Blacks have a negative and detrimental impression on children. Secondly, African American children are underrepresented in the media. These children have no self-images to relate to at a time when images are imperative. Also since they hold the media as their primary representation of their culture. When African American children are forming positive or negative self-images, They are often left out of the picture altogether. When they are included, they may be portrayed as nonessential or stereotypical. White children nearly always see themselves, and black children increasingly see people who look like them, though often in unflattering portrayals (Los Angeles times, p.4). African American children don’t have any images to look to in the media that can lift them up and empower them as a group. Positive images that can empower Black children are very important because children are extremely sensitive. According to the Los Angeles Times, All children are sensitive to what they watch on television, whether the programming is news or entertainment. They draw conclusion. They believe, said the study, that white characters are more likely to be rich, smart, and successful. They are leaders, doctors, and police officers—never maids or janitors. Minority characters are more likely to be poor, lazy, criminal or goofy. These early impressions matter, children quickly pick up stereotypes and inequities ;they all recognize the read role models (Los Angeles Times) This
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