The 11 Myths of Media Violence clearly explains why media violence has not only been allowed but encouraged to escalate. Esteemed author W. James Potter challenges many of our assumptions about the relationship between media and violence. He argues that these assumptions are the primary barriers preventing us from confronting the issue of violence in films, TV, and video games. Students and scholars of Mass Media, Communications, Film, and Sociology will find The 11 Myths of Media Violence inspires passionate discussion and innovative research. Consumer activists, teachers, and families will find it an essential resource and invaluable step toward finding solutions to this critical social issue.
Chapter Ten: Myth 9: The First Amendment Protects the Media from Restrictions on Violence
Myth 9: The First Amendment Protects the Media from Restrictions on Violence
Media businesses usually invoke their freedom of expression whenever they feel criticism pushing them into a corner with threats of content regulation. When all other arguments fail, freedom of speech is used as the ultimate line of defense. Observes Deborah Lutterbeck (1995), writing in Common Cause Magazine,
The industry players know the script. They know when to hang their heads while lawmakers preach at congressional hearings. But they also elicit agreeable nods when they talk of the dangers of censorship, of a cultural backlash that could crack the very pillars of democracy.
This defense usually works, because the public strongly supports this freedom—at least ...