1995 General Resolution

BECAUSE Unitarian Universalists are committed to the goal of a peaceful world characterized by justice, equity, and compassion for all; and

WHEREAS play and media images are among the primary ways a child learns about the world;

WHEREAS studies have demonstrated that exposure to media violence increases tolerance of actual violence, and can evoke copycat acts;

WHEREAS childhood aggression, playful and nonplayful, is statistically associated, years later, with an increase in spousal abuse and other forms of violence;

WHEREAS marketing of violence in toys, games and media frequently reinforces racist, sexist, and other stereotypes, increasing the risk of violence against members of stereotyped groups;

WHEREAS many television programs, motion pictures, video and computer games, and print media contain a high frequency of violent episodes presented as entertainment; and

WHEREAS marketing decisions are often based on profit rather than ethical considerations;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Unitarian Universalists — both children and adults — be urged to educate themselves about the relationships among media violence, children's aggressive play, stereotypes, and the level of violence in our society;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that Unitarian Universalist congregations and individual Unitarian Universalists be urged to:

  1. monitor television programs, motion pictures, and toy advertisements in their communities;
  2. express approval of positive media, non-violent toys, and their sponsors;
  3. express disapproval of gratuitously violent images and aggression-based toys to television stations, theater owners, video arcade owners, toy manufacturers, retailers, and sponsors;
  4. support education in non-violent means of conflict resolution; and
  5. observe the annual International Days of Protest Against War Toys; and

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that Unitarian Universalist congregations be encouraged to enter into coalitions to boycott sponsors and purveyors of violent media images or aggression-based toys, and to educate adults and children about non-violent toys and alternative forms of entertainment.

For more information contact socialjustice@uua.org.

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