Juvenile Crimes by pre teens in American TV series

As italian i want to make a question: why the television in America and other english speaking countries gives importance to juvenile crimes commited by pre teen girls and boys in the fictional context of crime television series like CSI and Law and Order and other hit crime series? from a catholic view this type of television content is ethical?

PS with pre teens i mean middle school age kids.

If your talking about shows like Scared Straight or Kids killing Kids…ita very sad to say those are not fictional stories like CSI or Law and Order.

As to why show like that are popular I have NO idea anymore then why Keeping up with the Kardashians has been on the air for over 13 years. American TV is sad, very sad.

A show like Law and Order takes a lot of its material from real life.

Pre-teens commit juvenile crimes, up to and including murder, and there’s always an argument about how the law should treat them. Should they be prosecuted as adults or given some lesser sentence because they are just kids.

Not sure how you think it would be unethical from a Catholic viewpoint or any other viewpoint to create a television program about pre-teen criminals or pre-teen murderers or whatever…like I said we’ve had such cases for centuries, it’s something that happens in real life frequently. And it’s not like such shows encourage young people to commit crimes.

3 Likes

Probably because, unfortunately, juveniles do commit a lot of the crimes. Shows like Law and Order get ideas from the news headlines. Juveniles are involved in gangs. I’m in a suburb of Chicago and they recruit kids as young as 8 to be ‘look-outs’. My maternal grandparents were from Italy and I know in my heart that if Italians were raising these kids, they wouldn’t dare get involved in gangs.

1 Like

Building on this, the show reporting on and being inspired by such crimes isn’t exactly ideal, but the producers shouldn’t be blamed for making it up because it is a reality

There’s also the “shock” and “thrill” factor of seeing what should be an innocent child commit a heinous crime from the safety of your living room.

And thinking how your own kids don’t do things like that.

And also fearing that your kids could do something like that.

It’s a vicarious thing

I thought it was just presented for the legal conflict making a good story on a show like “Law and Order”, which generally focuses on cases that are legally or forensically challenging in order to get its plots.

As for the true crime shows with kid killers, I don’t think true crime viewers get vicarious thrills from watching murder stories. I know I don’t. They’re mostly just interesting insights into the human condition. I think we’re all interested in knowing what causes someone to kill, especially when it’s someone who seems outwardly pretty normal or unlikely to be violent. And perhaps what we, individually or as a society, can do to prevent murders and protect others who need protection. I personally find it interesting to see that some kids who kill are clearly psychopaths from a young age, others appear to have mental illnesses that either weren’t treated or got the best of them, still others were abused or neglected and eventually took it out on another, and then there are the ones who seem to have just made terrible errors in judgment.

2 Likes

I agree @Tis_Bearself. I watch a lot of that kind of stuff on tv and it is the psychology and mental illness aspect of it that intrigues me, how certain people are totally lacking in a moral compass, or that they believe what they are doing is “acceptable.” For instance, I am currently watching the Ted Bundy program on Netflix and cannot fathom the thinking that went on in his mind.

1 Like

Well, in the United States one of the major criticisms of public education is that schools in lower-income neighborhoods tend to be underfunded and of lower quality. This leads to a large number of youths from those communities failing to graduate high school and falling into a criminal lifestyle.

Since most entertainers see part of their role as to hold a mirror up to society, some will often focus on criminality among youths.

I’d suggest it has little to do with funding disparity between rich and poor school districts.

Chicago still averages $62k per teacher. The fundamental driver of disparity in results is cultural, or the attitude in the home and community for getting an education. People don’t see a good education as an achievable stepping stool to a better life.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.