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Fight the zombification! July 11, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, blogfoolery, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, silliness, Society.

Matt Archbold writes about TV, and how it destroys your brain:

TV makes people into zombies. You ever watch someone watch television? It’s a horror. They look like humans but turned off. Even watch someone watch a sitcom. They don’t laugh. They just stare. I used to watch my little brother watch television. One time I took video of him watching television and showed it to him.

Even with my own kids, sometimes when I wake them up in the morning my wife may have left on the television news so she could get the traffic report, and the moment they walk into the room they’re zombified. They literally lose all capability of focusing or even moving. It truly is almost soul sucking. My little kids were transfixed the traffic report or the weather so I’d turn it off.

I’m not against it completely. The show “Lost” was great fun and there’s a few other shows I enjoy. But television has become the default setting in too many homes. They come in the house and the television goes on. And many of those same people complain that kids get too much homework.

Rich Lowrywrites on how awful the television addiction has become.

The University of Michigan Health System reports that kids ages two to five spend on average 32 hours a week in front of a TV. Among 8- to 18-year-olds, 71 percent have a TV in their bedroom (and they spend on average 1.5 hours a day more watching TV than kids without a TV in the bedroom)…

And let’s not pretend there’s a whole lot of good moral examples going on in television land. As Christians, we have a responsibility to counter this prevailing culture. And soaking our kids in it 32 hours a week doesn’t seem like a recipe for success.

When I was a kid growing up, my best friend liked to watch TV more than I did.  I wanted to go outside and throw tennis balls at passing cars, or ride skateboards, or whatever, and he wanted to veg out.  He’s a really bright guy, but I remember him sitting there, mouth agape, completely zombified in front of the TV.  I’d have to yell at him or shake him to get his attention.

And I see the same things happen with my kids!   It’s just like Archbold mentions, the TV comes on an all activity stops, they just drop in place and their eyes are utterly transfixed.  What is it about TV that is so mezmorizing!  Edward R. Murrow called TV the ‘electronic opiate,’ which is ironic because Murrow was instrumental in helping shape the addiction, if it is that, of millions.  But there is some truth – TV does seem to transfix the mind and induce a stupor similar to opiates.  And I think TV ‘addiction’ is quite possible.

We do have a TV, but no infeed.  We can watch movies, that’s about it.  Some think that’s crazy, how can you live without a TV?!?!! but I’m so busy I rarely miss it.  I’ve even gotten over not watching college football on TV.  I don’t miss the hours wasted flipping through 150 channels only to find absolutely nothing of interest on. 

Or maybe I just transferred all that time to the internet!  But, at least there, you have to take some action and be engaged on some minimal level.  Except on Hulu………..

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