Fox’s Family Guy, which is one of the most popular television shows for children ages 12 to 17, has descended into a regular pattern of making sexually violent jokes, 91 percent of which are about abusing children!
CNSNews.com is reporting on a new study conducted by the Parents Television Council (PTC), a TV watchdog group, which found that comedic references to child sex abuse on the show have increased by 16 percent since 2012. The study identified 58 scenes portrayed on the show over the past three years in which there was a humorous reference to rape, statutory rape, molestation, or pedophilia. In 79 percent of these cases, children were the victims of these crimes!
For instance, in one example, the character Quagmire wakes up in his living room with a girl lying on top of him. After telling her what an amazing night they had, he finds out she’s still in school. “You said you were twenty-three. Kira,” he says, and she responds, “Yeah, and you said you loved me.” A moment later, police officers knock on the door and ask him if he had sex with the girl, who is now known to be underage. He says yes, but before the officers can arrest him, he says, “All right, but let me just send the pictures I took of her last night to all my friends.”
According to the PTC, the study monitored first-run episodes of Family Guy that aired from 2012 to 2015 between 7:30 and 9:00 p.m., when children are most likely to be in the audience. The show is currently rated as being appropriate for children as young as 14 years old.
“At a time when nearly one in three women in America is sexually abused, why would a television network air a primetime program that routinely asks us to laugh at sexual violence? Why would we ever want to be in the position to laugh at humanity’s wors[t] offenses against children?” PTC president Tim Winter asked.
Melissa Henson, PTC’s director of communications and public education, warned that “The more kids are exposed to sexualized content, the higher [their] risk of sexual action” and “real-world consequences,” such as sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs), unexpected pregnancies, and non-consensual sex.
She also told CNS that the sexually violent content in Family Guy might also nourish “permission-giving beliefs” among viewers who are inclined towards sexually violent action, enabling them to interpret such behavior as more socially and morally acceptable.
According to Mary Anne Layden, a psychotherapist and director of education at the Center for Cognitive Therapy at the University of Pennsylvania, described the serious negative effects that sexually violent media content can have on a young audience.
“Media makers may call what they make ‘entertainment’, but everything a child sees is actually ‘education.’ For better or for worse. If they [children] hear jokes about sexual violence, they ‘learn’ that sexual violence is not much of a problem, not much of a crime, and doesn’t really hurt anyone,” Layden told CNS.
As a result of this study, the PTC is warning parents about the show’s contents so that they can limit kids viewing.
They are also taking aim at McDonalds, a major sponsor of the show.
“McDonald’s has been underwriting jokes about child sex abuse and date rape on Fox Broadcasting’s animated program Family Guy, among others,” Winters says.
“We at the Parents Television Council reached out to the corporation last year about this egregious sponsorship behavior, after having so many years sponsoring more family-friendly TV shows. McDonald’s . . . has continued to sponsor Family Guy, including its 250th episode, which was all about one of the main characters boasting about his 1,000th sexual conquest.”
You can put a stop to this violation of our children’s minds and morals. Visit the Parents Television Council to learn more.
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