Tuesday, April 12, 2005

THE FUTURIST, May-June: "Combating Copycat Violence"

Just placed online, THE FUTURIST, May-June 2005 Vol. 39, No. 3, has published Lane Jennings' article, "Combating Copycat Violence," which tackles an important issue. I appreciate their acknowledgement of my attention to this subject in my new book.

THE FUTURIST has even been very responsive to my bit of feedback about their article. At the end of the commentary by Jennings, the journal has this final paragraph:

"Instead of suppressing the media, as Coleman seems to recommend, we could try harder to balance violent content with more positive stories that are dramatic and worthy of potential copycats' attention."

I wrote the editor to note that as opposed to wishing to restrain the media, in the final chapter of my book I agree exactly with Jennings through my seven recommendations and supporting text. My final recommendation, number seven, in fact, is as follows:

"(7) And finally, the media should reflect more on their role in creating our increasingly perceived violent society. Honest reporting on the positive nature of being alive in the twenty-first century may actually decrease the negative outcomes of the copycat effect, and create a wave of self-awareness that this life is rather good after all. Most of our lives are mundane, safe, and uneventful. This is something that an alien watching television news from outer space, as they say, would never know. The media should 'get real,' and try to use their influence and the copycat effect to spread a little peace rather than mayhem."

Managing Editor Cindy Wagner quickly sent me this email on April 11th: "We will post your response on our Website and include it in the Feedback section in the next issue of The Futurist magazine."

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