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Media Affects Youth Image This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   MostAmericans watch the news because they believe it gives them a good ideaof what is going on in their communities, the country and the world. Butdo they realize what they are watching is not always true? The newsmedia tends to bend the truth - they'll do anything to get a story. Theyalso choose their stories very carefully to get the best ratings. Inshort, it all comes down to how much money they can make.

I havestopped watching the news and reading the newspaper because it is sodepressing. The majority of the stories on television are about murder,rape, teenagers gone bad and terrorist attacks. Most of the storiesabout teenagers are about how they killed their parents, raped a girl ata party or brought a gun to school. If parents were doing their jobs,kids wouldn't have access to guns in the first place.

We seldomhear about the good things teenagers do. All we hear is how parents needto deal with troubled and dangerous teens. What about the majority whodon't do drugs, drink, kill or have sex? What about the kids who aredoing something special for their communities? Why don't we hear aboutthe kids who are working hard in school and trying to go somewhere inlife?

The media stereotypes teen-agers, portraying us to adultsas hanging out in large groups getting drunk, having sex or plottingagainst anyone in our school who plays sports or is consideredpreppy.

If you ever find yourself wondering why an adult looksat you suspiciously, don't worry. It's probably not your fault. It'sbecause the media feels it is better to promote the bad things kids dorather than praise the good. Just try to ignore those stern looks andremember who helped us get such a great image - the media. So next timeyou're watching the news and you hear negative stories about teens,realize that adults don't usually see the good things we do so it's nottheir fault. It's all they hear and know.




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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