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So, What’s the Big Deal? It’s Just Art and Entertainment.

1. “Minority youth aged 8 to 18 consume an average of 13 hours of media content a day—about 4-1/2 hours more than their white counterparts, according to a Northwestern University report, the first national study to focus exclusively on children’s media use by race and ethnicity.” – Center on Media and Human Development, School of Communication
Northwestern University study, “Children, Media, and Race: Exploring the Implications of Racial and Ethnic Differences in Media Use Among Children and Youth.”

2. Studies have shown that when children or teens are exposed to images repeatedly for a long period of time, they internalize the images and begin to measure themselves and others against them. Ayanna Kai Thompson, MDR Student Alumni said, “I think music influences us a lot… It mainly brainwashes you. You want to be like the artists instead of being yourself. That’s what the media portrays. If you’re not like somebody who’s famous and lives a life of glamour, then you’re not an “It girl” or you’re not what’s poppin. If you don’t look like you have money, then other people are more likely to put you down.”

3. According to a study done by the Urban Ministry, “Nearly half of violent interactions involve perpetrators who have some attractive qualities worthy of emulation, particularly for young people.”

4. Media expert Michael Rich, MD, director of the Center on Media and Child Health, suggests that the consequences of being exposed to negative media that consistently portrays people of color as violent, less successful and less worthwhile than their White counterparts, can have serious impacts on young people.

5. Additionally, the American Academy of Pediatrics recognizes exposure to violence in the media as a significant health risk to children and teens because degrading forms of media may encourage risky sexual behavior that can lead to pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV.

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Media Done Responsibly is a project of the Pasadena Arts Council’s EMERGE Fiscal Sponsorship Program. Pasadena Arts Council is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Donations to Media Done Responsibly are tax deductible to the full extent of the law under Federal ID 95-2540759.