Media Could be Partially Responsible in School Bullies

Recently one focus of social problems in Taiwan is the school bullying (校園霸凌) incidents.  While school bullying has been around for a long time everywhere, certainly the recent incidents show a dramatic increase in number and degree of violence in Taiwan.

While I am not a sociologists and have limited knowledge, I do wonder if these recent increase is a result of media’s glorifying cruelty against others and mafia.  While most people focus on the government’s responsibility in this (are we surprised here?  Ma’s government basically fail everything it does except kissing Chinese ass to help it upholding the stock market), I think people also have to look at some of the problems in the media:

The Movie Monga (艋舺): I think anyone with some brain will make some connection between the movie Monga.  I have not watched the movie, but just based on its theme, which is teenage mafia, I think it might have some impact in this.  Actually before and during the movie release, I read a lot of complaints about this movie on pan green forum.  I think indeed some people have the foresight of seeing this as problematic movie. 

Yes, Taiwanese people like movies based on local culture which they can relate to, and this is generally a good thing in pan green’s eyes because in the grand scheme of things, it helps solidifying identity and national character, which can go a long way in building a better future.  However, this movie, Monga, seems to pick one of the worst part of Taiwanese local culture and glorify it, which is  why a lot of pan green does not like it.  (certainly they like it less than Cape No. 7 and others).    I, being more cynical, even wonder if KMT intended to use this film to degrade local culture because the film is partially subsidized by Taipei City government (look at this, this is how Taiwanese should behave, like a bunch of low class hot heads playing mafia). 

Just based on the movie trailer, I can see that the movie seems to glorify the idea that in order to stand up for “the brothers and sisters,” you have to take justice in your own hand and commit violence against others.  Certainly, we see the recent incidents are usually the result of some individual teenagers think someone else has done wrong to him/her, and his/her gang basically bully the wrong-doer, and they have no shame in doing such violence to a weaker and out numbered individual.  It is even more problematic when the movie is targeting the teenagers as its audience.  We all know how stupid we were when we were teenagers.

The Way Media Covers Ex-President Chen’s Case: This one I don’t expect most of the pan blue supporters to ever get it, because they are exactly like those teenage bullies who are blinded by their hatred and rage.  However, certainly, for pan green, we can see some relation here.

Of course Ex-President Chen’s case should be covered by the media, and indeed he has to face the court of law and the due process in the justice system.  (let’s just ignore  for now how KMT manipulate the justice system with its tentacles during the Chen case, that is another topic).  The problem is with the way the media cover the story.  Pan blue media basically gangs up on the Chen family and harass them like a bunch of bullies.  Certainly, they filled the pan blue supporters with a really strange hatred against ex-president Chen and his family which I totally do no understand. 

Certainly, you can dislike him as the President, but why people hate him personally to such a degree I do not understand.  Even some of the people from Hong Kong hate him, which is really really strange.  In any case, what the media did here is basically telling others that, yes, it is cool to take “justice” in your own hand and gangs up on someone.

Conclusion

There are other stuff in media that seem to encourage bullying behaviours, for example the glorification of the gangster boss who “save” Sean Lien’s life (the guy is probably lying because later it is shown that the pistol’s trigger simply does not allow another person’s finger to jam it after the first shot is fired…but again, that is another topic).  But I think I have made my point: the media could be partially responsible in this.

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