Juno blamed for US pregnancy pact
I was just watching the BBC news - a station that I once believed fought for non-sensationalised news but of late has been heading further and further towards the tabloid news style - and I heard the upcoming news bullet point where they ask if Juno is to blame for the seventeen teenage girls in a single Massachusetts school who became pregnant at the same time.
The statement was made in about the same number of words and a rather accusing style while running footage of Juno in the background. No mention was made of parents, living conditions, or anything about these girls lives, just the film Juno. Is a film really to blame for the actions of these teenagers?
I find it pathetic when so called news stations begin an underhanded attack on some form of entertainment without having any real factual basis for it. Even the BBC news website doesn't carry any mention of it (as yet) in their story of the seventeen teenagers.
Here's the important information from the BBC site:
When students at Gloucester High School broke up for the summer, officials, parents and the whole community had to face up to a shocking statistic.
Seventeen teenage pupils had walked out of the school gates pregnant.
More disturbing is that some of the school's own staff believe that this was no accident.
Local officials say that nearly half of the girls had entered into a bizarre pact to have their babies together.
The school principal says that several students returned multiple times to take pregnancy tests and some appeared upset when they found out they were not pregnant.
The school - which has 1,200 students - carried out 150 pregnancy tests in the past year alone.
So the BBC "news" channel just showed the presenters tearing through the upcoming headlines, something they do every twenty seconds, and over shots from Juno of the main character checking a pregnancy kit and telling her parents, asked if Juno was to blame for it all.
Well is it? Did the children watch the film and then decide all just to have children together?
Interestingly if we head to the Reuters news article we find the following information:
David Landry, a researcher at the Guttmacher Institute, a New York-based nonprofit group focusing on reproductive issues...cautioned against attributing the trend to Hollywood following the recent hit movie "Juno," in which a teenager gets pregnant and decides to have the baby, and "Knocked Up," a comedy about a one-night stand.
"The trend emerged before those movies," he said.
Oh look at that, before the films came out. You mean that the films were actually influenced by what's happening in real life and not the other way around? Oh lord, burn him at the stake quickly!
The statistics in the Reuters news article show:
Birth rates for teenagers aged 15 to 17 rose by 3 percent in 2006, the first increase since 1991, according to preliminary data released in December by the National Center for Health Statistics.
So is Juno really influencing teenagers to have children? Is that really to blame? It's the same argument we've heard for videogames, films, television, even going way back to while Kojak was running on television and I can remember it being blamed by some murderer for his actions.
When will we stop blaming the causes and reflections of society and start addressing the real issues as adults? However it seems to be the way we behave, ignore the truth and facts, find other things to blame, and address the symptoms.
Film isn't to blame, it just reflects society and this proves it. Juno didn't make these children pregnant, they wanted to be, and they made it happen.