Recently I read something that made me think about what I consider entertainment. Namely, Law & Order. Why do I watch these shows about heinous sexual crimes, murders, suicides, violence, perversions, addictions, etc? What is entertaining about people doing horrible things to other people or themselves? Is this our version of the Colosseum and hangings in the town square?
The images and emotions stirred up by the show (and other movies or shows like it) often remain with me well after it's over. I lay in bed some nights listening to the baby monitor trying to figure out if someone is in our house hurting my baby or if it was just the ice maker in the fridge. (This is after I've made sure the doors are dead bolted. And we live in a town were people ask us if they can take the copper pipes laying in our yard instead of just stealing them!)
I don't need that. And I also don't think I should be helping the ratings of a show that makes its money off the sickness of man. So I've decided to stop watching Law & Order.
At this point I am not getting rid of all tv though. My top 3 shows will remain since Life is about finding the truth, Heroes is about people with special abilities and House is about a jerk but his interns are good people and they do help people. So they each contain an element that makes them fantastic (in the literal sense) or rooted in benevolence. (Am I just finding an excuse because I don't want to let them go? In my head there is a real difference between the tones, styles and outcomes of the episodes of these shows verses Law & Order. I hope I'm not being a hypocrite.)