We are so used to domestic violence disguised as entertainment, our moral responsibilities are being sold down the river. Maybe Phil Collins had it right when he said, ‘I don’t care anymore…you hear me, I don’t care anymore.”
I left the comforts and steady pay of the cop world drama on LAW & ORDER because the stories of murder began to take it’s toll on my soul. Every day we’d sit around and create more stories of murder. This is how I was using my creativity? The glorification of murder? I decided it was time to tell other stories. Having been involved with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Monica, I finally found my way into the telling stories for children. You could say I am now very protective of ‘my kids’, which are mostly the middle school children across the country, so when a network decides to use domestic violence disguised as entertainment where kids are the center of all the violence, I have to say, enough is enough.
Having grown up watching the original Hawaii Five-O, not to mention a fan of Scott Caan’s, I decided to DVR the new Hawaii Five-O. I know what I am going to get with a show like this, situational domestic violence, guns, murder, and all things network television cop drama. What I didn’t account on getting was a storyline involving situational domestic violence in front of and around a child.
As the author of Saltwater Taffy, a children’s adventure novel that inspires as much as it entertains, I have a big issue with most of the network programming we have today. Like most stories of situational domestic violence…
…the first 5 minutes of this type of “drama” involves the crime. In this case, a boy is video conferencing on his iPhone with his Dad. Suddenly, the Dad’s motorcade is attacked and automatic gunfire erupts. Big bad buys kidnap the boy’s father and we’re off to the races to find out the identities of the big bad guy terrorists.
The final act showcases the bad guys bringing the middle school son to the location where his father has been interrogated and badly beaten. The boy watches his father get pummeled as they try to extort information from him and how to use some new age weapon of mass destruction. Then, one of the big bad guys grabs the kid’s neck….forces his face downward and the boy is screaming. The father is screaming. The boy watches his father take more killer punches. Guns. Violence. Children. Not cool.
In my opinion, there is room for a message that gives people more hope than we currently have in programming. Sure, we have comedies and other situational things that do not involve such things, but come on. Even if this show is for adults and resides in the timeslot of 10pm, the content doesn’t have to have children involved. I mean, how many versions of Law & Order or CSI’s do we need? Cop shows will never go away, but our fascination with murder and mayhem is out of control.
The kind of hope I’m talking about is not sold via politics, but hope where a person lays in bed at night and feels happy with who they are and where they are going in life. Happy and self-assured. Not frustrated. Not mad. Not revengeful. Closing their eyes and off to dreamland where they are without fear or some other kind of attack thought keeping them awake. Can we provide programming for middle school children where they can enjoy a purity of happiness where love can reside? Can we please program some of these things into the primetime fray? I say yes. I say right now. WHY NOT!