Children, Adolescents, Substance Abuse, and the Media Assignment

Children, Adolescents, Substance Abuse, and the Media Assignment Words: 1299

Although society tries to get teenagers and pre-teens to ‘Just say no’, companies spend billions of dollars each year condoning use of cigarettes and alcohol. Superb” produced by Columbia Pictures, although rated R is aimed at a teenage audience. The movie portrays not only alcohol use and abuse, but also the purchasing of it illegally in the attempt to inebriate two girls. The movie does not show alcohol use being a gateway drug; neither does it show to potential negative effects of binge drinking.

The media will continue to influence children and adolescents until congress and the government take the war on drugs to a new level and prohibit the advertising of alcohol and drugs on television during youth-oriented broadcasting and establishes additional laws for each industry. Superb” produced by the popular production company Columbia Pictures, was released in August 2007, with a R-rating by the Motion Picture Association of America. A R-rating refers to the movie as being Restricted and those under the age of 17 years must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian to watch the film.

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This movie grossed $170 million in the box office and was nominated as best movie at the 2008 MAT Movie Awards. Two of the main characters, Seth and Even, labeled as the unpopular kids, are best friends about to graduate high school. They both desperately want to lose their rigidity and when invited to a graduation party, so long as they bring alcohol, the opportunity is at their fingertips. They do not have a means to obtain the alcohol, so they invite their awkward friend Vogel (also known as McClain) that gets a fake identification card (ID) in order to buy the alcohol.

First, Vogel gets away with the fake ID and is able to purchase the alcohol illegally but not before a robber knocks him out in an attempt to rob the liquor store. Luckily the police arrive and still as this Vogel character checks out with the alcohol, the cops don’t catch the fake ID either, instead make conversation. With Vogel taking so long, Seth and Even assume he has been arrested because the cops are inside with him and he hasn’t come out of the store yet. Seth and Even find other means to get the alcohol and head out to the party without Vogel. The movie depicts how easy it is for teens to gain access to alcohol.

According to Charles Leviathan (2012), one of the major challenges when considering the options in reducing underage drinking is how easy it is to access alcohol beverages. Once at the party, everyone is binge drinking, the girls they were hoping to inebriate were already drunk and have spent the night drinking heavily. According to Leviathan (2012), a common social ritual in adolescents and teens is binge drinking. Although this movie is a comedy, alcohol is portrayed as not only a ticket to get into a party, but a drug to get two girls inebriated in order for the unpopular boys to have sex for the first time.

Leviathan (2012) states that while intoxicated, approximately twenty percent of young adults participate in unintended sexual activity. Socially, not only getting someone drunk to have sex with them, but having unplanned sex yourself is accepted and often bragged about in the community of young adults. Being a part of he in crowd is the most important endeavor for a lot of teenagers and doing what is needed to be a part of it goes without question. While at the party, Van’s attempt to have sex with the girl of his dreams, Beach, ended before it could begin with her vomiting.

This is portrayed correctly in the film as Leviathan (2012) explains that one of the first toxic reactions to the overcompensation of alcohol is to vomit, as it is a gastric irritant. Fortunately in “Superb”, neither of the characters ended up having sex although intoxicated, and the story ends with a cordial appreciation that one did tot take advantage of the other. While this movie accurately portrays the life of the average teenager in the attempt to fit into their peer group and be popular, it does not show that the use of alcohol and binge drinking can lead to other problems or symptoms.

Not only can binge-drinking lead to death, but also alcohol consumption usually leads to a hangover the next day. “Superb” showed Beach was vomiting after drinking, which is toxic reaction number one, according to Leviathan (2012), the second reaction may be that the drinker passes out. Leviathan (2012) says that although this eliminates he person from drinking more, vomiting while passed out or unconscious is possible and can cause asphyxiation. Hangovers are very common after a night of consuming large amounts of alcohol.

Although the story did not show these effects, symptoms may include nausea, headache, thirst, and fatigue. According to Leviathan (2012), fatigue occurs even if one may have had several hours of sleep, because alcohol decreases the length of time someone may spend in ERM sleep. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics or PAP (2010), alcohol is and has continued to be the number one drug represented on television. PAP (2010) also illustrate that more than one third of scenes demonstrating drinking are amusing and a very small percent of parts portray the negative consequences.

The movie “Superb” was no different than what the American Academy of Pediatrics discussed, the movie was popular not only because of the comedy within the flick, but also the reality. It outlined the life of everyday teenagers but put a spin on the events to make it more entertaining. “Superb” did not show other drug use and did not explain the potential of alcohol as being a gateway drug. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics or PAP (2010) and Leviathan (2012), the greatest danger of alcohol use in young adults (teens and pre-teens), could be the fact that it can be used as a gateway to other drug use.

An apparent study by PAP (2010) depicts that the younger a child experiments with drugs or alcohol, the greater the possibility of health problems, and the higher the chance they will tryout other drugs. Although parents, teachers, psychologists, pediatricians, and the government have built anti-drug abuse/use programs, and spent millions of dollars advertising the harmful effects, children and teenagers are continuing to use and abuse alcohol and drugs. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics or PAP (2010), most of the advertising on alcohol products is done during youth oriented and sporting event broadcasting.

Until there are laws that prohibit companies from advertising drugs and alcohol during certain times and on specific channels, there will not be a change in the desire for kids to want to experiment with these substances. “Superb” depicts alcohol use in adolescents that is all too common in the media and in everyday life. This movie displays kids, although underage, obtaining alcohol in order to not only be accepted into the popular crowd, but to also inebriate and aka advantage girls.

There are also examples of binge drinking and consistent with Leviathan’s assessment of the side effects of over intoxication. Harsher restrictions need to be made in the media to minimize the view that using alcohol will make you popular/cool and that binge drinking is acceptable. Congress needs to take a stance and put laws into place otherwise nothing will change. In support of PAP (2010), congress should require the alcohol industry to report annually what percentage of their media venues are children, and it should be restricted to a lower percentage than it currently is (restrictions allow 30%).

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Children, Adolescents, Substance Abuse, and the Media Assignment. (2020, Sep 17). Retrieved September 18, 2020, from https://anyassignment.com/social-science/children-adolescents-substance-abuse-and-the-media-assignment-53537/