From VCE examiners being shocked (and rightly so) that the students are writing on films with R and X rated content in their Media exams to the rise in family and domestic violence, it is my personal opinion that there is a link between the two. We as a society have become so 'out there' in terms of permissiveness and attitudes to modesty and correct behaviour that we are being kind to the cruel and cruel to the kind.
I get shocked by some of the things that my son brings home from school in terms of language and ideas. Now I am not an old fuddy duddy and have seen and heard many things in my life and experienced things that I would have preferred not to have seen and experienced. I went through an 'interesting' few years before I was able to balance out my ideas and form values that most people have formed through home.
As a child I was very close with my grandmother and father. My mother was strange in her attitude towards me always. She saw me as competition for everyone's affection and attention, thus as far as mothering went in my life it was a strange affair. I went to boarding school at eleven and a half and when I was dying to stay at home for a year after finishing my Senior Certificate in Queensland, my mother refused to have me at home. She told me, 'I do not want you in my house because we will only fight. You have two choices - join the public service or do a teaching degree.' No matter how much I begged and pleaded I was told these were my choices, so at seventeen and a half, I was released into the world and told to swim among the sharks and to make my own way. I did with disastrous results and lots of grief. I was grieving for the one person apart from my father who I was close to in the family and to be put out like that after six years in a sheltered boarding school life was a recipe for emotional and psychological disaster. I was led down to Melbourne by a so called school friend who wanted me to tag along as a sort of 'chaperon' with her older british boyfriend and his mate. When I refused the rather lewd and ugly advances of her boyfriend's repulsive friend (He actually said to me in the lounge room of 30 A Armadale Street Amadale where we had rented a two bedroom house and I was sleeping in the lounge room because Cheryl's boyfriend had come into the girls' bedroom to visit her and I made myself scarce and taken my blanket to sleep on the couch in the lounge room,'How about it, you fat little cow, let's have root?' I told him in no uncertain terms what I thought of that offer and fled into the kitchen and got a knife from from the kitchen drawer. I slept with my hand on the knife under the pillow. Something must have been said between Cheryl and her boyfriend Alan and his vile mate Mike because not long after that it was decided that the girls would move into a one bedroom flat on Alma Road and the men would move into a flat just off Williams Road. Needless to say Cheryl did not spend much time at the flat we shared and then after one month she moved in with a female teller from the bank of Wales on Collins Street where we both worked. I came home one day and her belongings had already been moved out. I was earning around $34 clear a week and the rent was $20. I remember it was flat 8 at 137 Alma Road. My fares into work were around $8 a week so that did not leave much over for food. I had to find another person to share the flat with fast and my life took a very downward turn with the person I chose to share my flat with. I cannot even remember her name although I remember her face. I don't want to remember her because she was the most immoral and vicious person I could have ever hoped to have shared a flat with. At the same time I met this camp guy who invited me to a party. I was intrigued by this guy and being naive and lonely I accepted his invitation. There I met another unsavoury person a man who was thirty six years old, twice my age which was eighteen at the time. Anyway to cut a long story short some things are better left unsaid and untold, I spent around six years trying to sort myself out of the emotional and psychological mess I had gotten myself into. It was not until I started to study again that things became more stable and I believed that I had a future again. Yes I kept my head just above water and had to sort out the good from the bad but I hope most people never have to go through what I had to go through. What is the point of this?
The point is that children need parents to guide them in many things in life. You cannot leave children to their own devices and definitely children should not be exposed to some images and should not have to experience some things. If we bring a child into the world, we are responsible for them and it is our duty to guide and protect them from themselves if we have to.
Children are exposed to images and experience things that they need not experience which marks them for better or for worse often for life. I believe that there is a direct co-relation between the violence in films and lack of morality in many films and what we are experiencing in the rise of family violence and violence on the streets of cities and town. Also the complete lack of morality in films and TV as well as novel which are often too graphic. Children and teenagers need movies and stories that are inspirational and above all moral.
We have teenage boys fascinated with pornography and the like which they can access through the Internet and their phones and then we wonder at the decay - decline in morals and lack of respect for women in society. It stands to reason that if you give your children no education in standards, they will be lost and wondering where to go next. That is why good parenting and moral behaviour from parents is essential to have a good and strong society. Parents must set a standard of behaviour to keep society good and functioning well. If parents are immoral and at sea, then do not expect too much from the children. Education is the key to success in many areas of life. Education and more education to make thoughtful and astute citizens of Australia and any nation for that matter.