11 April 2012
Is T.V. Really the Enemy?
Is T.V. the root of all our family problems? In Television: The Plug-In Drug, the author Marie Winn believes just that. She argues that television was beneficial in bringing the family together back when it first came out, but now that every family has an average of two television sets, everyone watches it in a separate room, not connecting with their kin during pivotal moments like dinner or holidays. Instead of laughing, singing, and eating together, families sit in peace, away from each other mentally, and sometimes physically. Parents enjoy the quietness of a couple without children and don’t take proper care of their offspring through communicational stimulation, and children mind their own business, quietly soaking up the information that television hands to them.
Unfortunately, according to Toulman’s logic, Winn’s accusing claim that television is splitting families apart, is not well-backed due to her failure to provide reliable resources for her data, a strong enough warrant to show the overall picture, and lack of qualifiers, to prove that television is truly this damaging to family life and the purpose families should serve in society. Winn takes instances that shine a negative light on TV from individual cases, which neither represent the total American population nor show the behaviors of average Americans. When the personal stories from people suffering from the reign of television are brought up, there are no names given to give credibility to the writers. Winn merely says the gender, or the occupation of the writer, or where she or he hails from, and then she states that the situations these families are experiencing reflect that of almost every American citizen. When she does name the author of the work she is using in her piece, it comes with no description of who this human being is— who are Bruno Bettelheim and Urie Bronfenbrenner? For all the reader knows, it could be her...
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