Diminishing Values of Reality Television
ENG122: English Composition II
May 5th, 2012
Reality television has set low standards for ourselves and our youth in society today, such as glorifying being sixteen and pregnant, how real housewives in the "city" act, and having toddlers look too grown up for their ages. There are still some good values in some programs but there seem to be more diminishing values in reality television shows.
Reality television has distorted reality for our children in this society. The show Jersey Shore has little positive values in its episodes. The positive values that are portrayed for teens and young adults to pick ...view middle of the document...
The shows let you see the financial struggles the new parents go through, the stress of school and work, and the family involvement or in some cases the lack of. Then the show portrays the gossip part and stares that go with young parenting.
According to a Fox News review, neither show is a positive sex education teaching tool (Piazza, 2010). The two shows promote promiscuous sexual behavior in teenagers. Many teenagers think pregnancy and motherhood is cool, they do not completely understand the true issues with raising a baby at a young age. Some adolescents believe they could get famous and become a celebrity like the teenage girls on the show. These are also values we do not want to instill on impressible youth.
The National Campaign did research with young adolescents between the ages of twelve and nineteen years old. It turned out that six out of ten of the adolescents have watched at least some part of Sixteen and Pregnant and Teen Mom. In another study by the National Campaign 82% of teenagers had a better understanding of the challenges of teen pregnancies, 15% of the teenagers felt the shows glamorizes teen pregnancies, and 3% were just unsure of what they thought of the shows (thenationalcampaign.org).
We have to make sure respectable values are instilled from a young age due to our children's minds are still developing and is like play-doh. This is where the diminishing values of the show Toddlers and Tiaras are an issue. With this show, the emphasis is taken away from inner beauty and personality (Duff, Pros and Cons of Beauty Pagents, 2011). The show Toddlers and Tiaras teaches our young girls between the ages of 2 years old through 6 years old a corrupted view of what makes one beautiful. This show pushes physical perfection, have the children believing that to look good you have to be thin, and this leads to superficiality. This show has little girls in more make-up than most adults wear, the children wear fake eyelashes, and even go has far has wearing weaves and wigs. In one episode there was a four year old little girl dressed up looking like an adult including fake breasts and a padded bottom. Toddlers and Tiaras teaches little girls to gender stereotype women.
The everyday American little girl is not perfect. They do not go around wearing heels, puffy dresses, and tons of make-up. Also, little girls are different heights and weights, they are not the perfect little girl portrayed on television. Little girls enjoy wearing jeans and t-shirts with sneakers. This show diminishes the phrase "When you grow up, you can be whatever you want." because the little girls on this show are only learning one thing, how to pretty and perfect. The show Toddlers and Tiaras have also created negative feelings of hurt when a child does not win the beauty pageant. America should not enforce or instill these types of negative values on our young vulnerable little girls. Little girls should be allowed to be little...