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Youths have been represented differently on different spheres of life. People expect that the youth will live a better life which will always draw praises throughout the entire time of their youthfulness. However, there are several activities which the youths do that draw negative criticism. This essay will explore two major topics of youth representation. The topics are crime and youth in the network age. The statement of the problem is how the youth are represented regarding criminal activities and the way they use the social media. There have been a lot of debate on how the youth are being oppressed in the ways they normally use the social networks and their representation regarding the criminal activities within the country. Most of the times the youth are portrayed negatively in relation to the criminal activities. Most of the times the youth have been labeled as the sole reason for criminal activities. However, the government has not engaged itself in looking for the root cause of the criminal activities that the youths might be engaging in. Nevertheless, the youth have been portrayed as time wasters when using the social media. Therefore, the essay will explore in details the way youths have been represented as mentioned above. The essay will explore how the media politicians and the government perceive the youths.
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Crime and Justice
Since long ago young people are always perceived to be rude, thieves and unruly. All the bad activities everywhere are always associated with the youth.For a long period of time, the study of the youth in regards to criminal activities has been on uptrend all over the world (Taylor and Francis, 2012). Most of the researchers will always link the youth to criminal activities (Anon, 2017). Youths have been involved in all types of criminal activities ranging from theft, illegal ownership of guns, violence, and use of illegal drugs in the country. Some of them have been served with the correct punishment. However, regarding justice, many youths have been punished through jail and death, but they were not the perpetrators of the criminal activities.
Cultural theory insinuates that the youth join the bad groups as a choice as the main reason why they participate in the criminal activities. It is difficult to say that, through cultural theory, we are able to understand why the youth form the groups for purposes of participating in the criminal activities. Therefore, there are no clear explanations that the youth from groups by choice as a means of engaging in the criminal activities. The following are the reasons why the youths are involved in criminal activities.
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The government, leaders and the politicians have played a huge role in ensuring that the youths are negatively represented in the societies. The government has convinced people that the youth have always loved in the participation of the criminal activities. Through putting up structures and institutions meant to stop the youths from criminal activities is a show that it is lebling the youths as criminals. The government should look at the ways which it can control the following problems that might be root cause of the youths being involved in criminal activities.
Social groups or gangs play a vital role in pushing the youths into criminal activities through the influence of one another (Bengtsson, 2012). The youths within the social groups push one another to do the criminal activities. Consequently, poverty pushes the youth into criminal activities. The youth participate in the criminal activities so that they can get money for their basic need. Illegal acquisition of firearms increases the courage and determination of the youth to participate in the criminal activities (Taylor & Francis, 2017). Therefore, youth criminal activities are manifestation of these problems and the government is supposed to tackle these real issues rather than spreading the misconceptions that the youths participate in the youth crime as a choice.
The media has represented the youth in a manner to show they are the sole source of the criminal activities. Consequently, the justices proceedings against the youth will always be negative to the youths however much the youth plead their innocence. There are a lot of bias regarding the youths and the justice. The youth crime was legislated into the existence through the special and negative attention of the media and the politician given to the youth. The young people began to be labeled in the crimes since ages ago. These forced them to the criminal activities among.Young people found their way into the vice and the youth crime statistics rose. This led to the youth crime being considered as a youth problem. The media and the politician exaggerated the problem due to the negative representation of the youth. The media, politicians and the government are to be blamed for the problem of the youth crime. That has made adults believe that the youth in any streets are up to criminal activities. The following are the news involving youths, criminal activities and the way they have been represented.
Video: A boy with air gun was shot two 2 seconds after Cleveland Police arrived.
2014, the residents of Cleveland were astonished after a police officer shot a 12-year-old boy. The boy had threatened people that he had a gun but in reality, he had air gun that is normally used as toys by the kids (Jason Hanna, 2017). It is evidence that the police have been entrusted with the task of dealing with the youths ruthlessly in order to get the faith of the people. Consequently, the media did not participate in the protection of the victim but rather explained how the youth was armed with “air gun”.
The Boys who Killed James Bulger
The Sydney Morning Gerald, published news about the boys who killed James Bulger. The news is about two boys who killed James Bulger (Cornwell, 2017). The two boys killed the young chap without any hesitation. The boys were taken to jail. They are serving their sentences. This is the captured image of the two boys.
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Therefore, the media is portraying the image of the youth as a very bad group. The media are fully supporting the ideal the most of the youth, especially the African Americans, participate in the criminal activities. The media do that to get more sales in the news they are given to the people (YouTube, 2017). The police and the courts are also biased. The government appears to have control over the extent of the issue through creating the public confidence. In reality, the government is collaborating with the media to exaggerate the perception that the youth are the ones who are involved in the youth.
Youth In-Network Coverage
The modern day technology has witnessed a lot of emergence of social networks. The youths and the adults have joined the social media for the different purpose. People have joined the social network for purposes of making friendship while others have joined for reasons of business. Despite that, the systems have been flooded by the youth. Statistics have shown that nine in every ten youth are in the social media or have once been involved in the social media.Examples of the highest ranking social networks are Facebook, Twitter, Bebo, and MySpace. However, the youths have been given a negative image or representations regarding the use of social media on several occasions.
The media have had always been spreading a negative representation of youth and the way they use the social media network. Media has based its perception on the theory of repressive tolerance, which means that the youth have always been obsessed with the social network. Even if it does not serve the appropriate function which is supposed to serve (Like, post, share, n.d.). Consequently, the media have continued to portray the youth as the digital captives. Digital captives are individuals who dwell on the social networks, even if the social networks do not serve the prime functions. The two views of the media show the negative representation of the youths by the media and such related institutions.
Several media stations are condemning the youth who are using the social network for the following reasons. The incidences of cyberbullying are on the high leading to depression and suicide among the youths (Buckingham, Bragg and Kehily, n.d.). The social networks also expose the youth to strangers leading to theft or killings. The social media are also associated with many pornographic materials. Therefore, media stations have assumed that all these negative implications of social platforms are perpetuated by the youth. Due to these negative issues associated with the social network, the media have always portrayed them as timeless facts. Consequently, media has always underrepresented and stereotyped the girls and women. The media looks at boys and men as the ones who are good on issues of business and education. Women are seen as good on the issues of fashion only but not to do with the things of cognitively (YouTube, 2017). The following are the news with such misconceptions about the youth and social networks.
Instagram Worst Social App for young people’s Mental Health.
CNN published news that Instagram is the worst social media application for the mental health of the young people (Kara Fox, 2017). The news elucidated that the youth get problems such as body identity, anxiety, depression and body image. The application makes the youth believe that their bodies are not good enough leading to depression. The news urged the social media to take action to combat the youth from the feeling of inadequacy. The following is the image of how youth’s brains are affected by social media.
Facebook Research Targeted Insecure Youth, leaked Document Shows
News from the independent revealed that Facebook is targeting the insecure youth (Pells, 2017). The platform is said to be reaching out to the vulnerable youth who wants to boost their confidence to facilitate the predatory advertising practices. The image below shows how the platform targeted the youth.
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The youths are represented in a negative way regarding criminal activates and the use of social media. On the aspect of the criminal activities, the media and the government has made sure that it represents the youths as the sole cause of the problem. The government has failed to deal with the problems that bring about criminal activities, but appear to control the youth so that it can restore the faith of the citizens. Through that, the government has propelled the fact that the youth are criminals. The media have also portrayed social network as platforms that youths waste their time on them and receive many stereotypes. The youth is seen as vulnerable to these platforms and causal agents of all the troubles in the social media networks. Therefore, the government and the media should deal with the real issues that make the youth to be seen as the causal agents of all the problems.
- Anon, (2017). [online] Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13676261.2914.901493 [Accessed 23 Sep. 2017].
- Bengtsson, T. (2012). Learning to become a ‘gangster’?.Journal of Youth Studies, 15(6), pp.677-692.
- Cornwell, J. (2017). The boys who killed James Bulger. [Online] The Sydney Morning Herald. Available at: http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/life-and-relationships/real-life/the-boys-who-killed-james-bulger-20130208-2e2nd.html [Accessed 23 Sep. 2017].
- Buckingham, D., Bragg, S. and Kehily, M. (n.d.). Youth cultures in the age of global media.
- Gill, R, and Scharff.c (2011). New Femininities: Postfeminism, Neoliberalism, and Subjectivity. UK: Palgrave Macmillan.
- Jason Hanna, C. (2017). Video of Cleveland police shooting of boy released – CNN. [online] CNN. Available at: http://edition.cnn.com/2014/11/26/justice/cleveland-police-shooting/index.html [Accessed 23 Sep. 2017].
- Kara Fox, C. (2017). Instagram worst app for young people’s mental health. [online] CNN. Available at: http://edition.cnn.com/2017/05/19/health/instagram-worst-social-network-app-young-people-mental-health/index.html [Accessed 23 Sep. 2017].
- Like, post, share. (n.d.). .
- Pells, R. (2017). Facebook research targeted insecure youth, leaked documents show. [online] The Independent. Available at: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/media/facebook-leaked-documents-research-targeted-insecure-youth-teenagers-vulnerable-moods-advertising-a7711551.html [Accessed 23 Sep. 2017].
- Taylor and Francis (2012). Youth Studies: An Introduction. Pp.351-389.
- Taylor & Francis. (2017). Street habitus: gangs, territorialism and social change in Glasgow. [online] Available at: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13676261.2013.793791 [Accessed 23 Sep. 2017].
- YouTube. (2017). Solving the Youth Crime ‘Problem’ | Stephen Case | TEDxLoughboroughU. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYWPyiZIpV8 [Accessed 23 Sep. 2017].
- YouTube. (2017). How the media affects youth | Oda FaremoLindholm | TEDxOslo. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjnclEhy960 [Accessed 23 Sep. 2017].