Monday, August 07, 2006


If it's hot-ass sex and red-blooded violence you're looking for in the media, let me direct you to the August issue of Pediatrics magazine, which is evidently the heir to the machismo editorial legacy of Saga and Argosy and other chest-hair-action men's mags of the 1950s.

According to today's Chronicle, this month's Pediatrics has one article linking teen sex to listening to sleazy sexual song lyrics, and another linking teen violence to watching wrestling on TV.

Study number one, by the Rand Corp., found that 51 percent of kids aged 12 to 17 who listened "to lots of music with degrading sexual messages" while virgins started having sex within two years, as opposed to only 29 percent of those who listened to little or none of such music. Of course, "degrading sexual messages" can either mean "messages that sex is good" if you're the Family Research Council, or "messages that sex is bad" if you're Hugh Hefner.
The encouraging part of this study is that almost 1/3 of even the most wholesomely-reared kids will start having sex no matter what you fill their heads with--Debby Boone, Kenny G, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, nothing dissuades the little weasels.

Study number two, by the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, found that teenagers who watched wrestling shows like "RAW" and "Smackdown" were more likely to engage in violence, "including carrying weapons and fighting on dates." This, of course, raises a couple of interesting hypotheticals.

For one, if the violence-prone kids had spent their free time listening to sleazy lyrics instead of watching wrestling, their dates would probably have gone a lot better, or at least involved fewer contusions. On the other hand, if the kids who listened to sleazy music had also watched wrestling, maybe the sex would have been better, or at least more memorable. And by the way, shouldn't the Baptist Med Center have been conducting the sex-and-music survey? It seems like a classically Baptist issue. For that matter, you'd think the Rand Corp. would be more likely to take an interest in violence than teen rutting.

So, parents, the question is, what in God's name should you do if you come home and there in the rec room is your teen, watching TV wrestling and plugged into an Ipod with a look of unmistakably sleazy sexuality on his/her face?

Fortunately, the answer may lie with another article in today's Chron, which comes--so help me--from the American Academy of Pediatrics, and warns parents of the dangers of putting children in shopping carts, which caused 24,000 injuries to children last year due to falls and tipovers. Get that kid down to the nearest Safeway and get his/her ass into a shopping cart! The fact that they're large gawky adolescents now almost ensures some serious, debilitating mishap.

If you're lucky, it'll be a spinal cord injury, and voila: problem solved.


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