New Study: Public Blames Media For Eroding American Values
You can read the whole report here (be warned, however, it is a very large 13.7MB PDF file). Among the key findings:
Nearly three-fourths of the public (73%) says the entertainment industry has a negative effect on moral values, and more than half (54%) say the news media is also helping to erode traditional values.“Beyond the overt moral issues,” the CMI report concludes, “the media appear to be adversely affecting American attitudes toward the deeper questions of character. Greater exposure to the media correlates to erosion in personal responsibility as measured by commitment to self-reliance, charity and honesty.
Those who say they watch the most television (more than four hours per evening) are the least likely to make charitable contributions or volunteer their time; are the most likely to believe the government should be responsible for providing for their retirement; and are the most likely to say they would skip out on a restaurant bill.
Those who watch the least television (one hour or less per evening) are the most likely to participate in charitable causes; more likely to condemn divorce, homosexuality and sex between unmarried adults; and most likely to see the media as a destructive force.
“The great majority of Americans perceive a decline in the nation’s moral values. This is another way of saying Americans perceive an erosion in the personal responsibility, honor and integrity of their fellow citizens. They also see a decline in sexual mores, and the nation’s commitment to religious values and practice: the very areas apparently being undermined by the media.”