Let me start out by saying I am not some nut crazed right wing conservative fanatic. Although my kids may argue that fact because of my love of Ronald Reagan, John Wayne and Charlton Heston. I defend that by saying I just love macho men.
The other day, while watching yet, another episode of Sponge Bob, I decided to ‘fib’ to my oldest daughter and tell her she was in luck, they were removing Sponge Bob for good because he was a negative influence. My daughter who never believes anything I say, wholeheartedly bought my tale and even applauded the idea. “That makes perfect sense, it really isn’t a good influence.”
She then started spewing off examples. I was kinda taken aback, I mean, how often do we as caregivers watch the show? We see the bouncing yellow guy and the happiness (Not to mention hypnotic) effect it brings to the kids and we just let them love Sponge Bob. I love Sponge Bob, annoying as he is, the yellow sponge is a bartering tool, and a distraction for a half hour.
But is it a good distraction? No. He’s not. And I know I don’t have to convince anyone. Let’s be clear, I am not petitioning or calling for a ban on the Bob. I am a firm believer that we control what our kids watch, not the TV. If there is something bad our young ones are watching, it is our fault, not the networks.
That being said, as my daughter started pointing out specifics from episodes that depicted violence, rude behavior, bullying, it dawned on me that the creators of Sponge Bob must have the Seven Deadly sins hanging on the writing wall as a guide to follow. Each episode clearly commits 6 out of 7.
Sloth and Gluttony – Patrick is our culprit, he eats like a horse doesn’t care if anyone else has any, not to mention, he’s a slob who doesn’t work.
Pride – Sandy, who annoys me is always full of herself, along with Larry the Lobster and let’s not forget Squigward.
Envy – Well, that’s easy. Plankton is always chasing the secret formula.
Greed – Mr. Crabs is motivated and lives by the dollar.
Lust – Who can forget the episode when Patrick dressed as a girl and Mr. Crabs and Squigward were chasing after him.
Anger – Squigward is the meanest person on the show. How many times does he call Patrick and SB an idiot or moron. Not to mention all the beach bullies.
In all fairness though, while Sponge Bob depicts the seven sins , Tom and Jerry weren’t any better. They chased each other, fought, beat each other up and let’s not forget how many episodes they just got drunk. Drunk? Yeah. Drunk.
While Sponge Bob is basically teaching the youth to be greedy and mean, is at any worse than the cartoons that taught us to be violent drunks?
It’s all in what we view it as. A guide or entertainment and it is all in how the adults aid the child in understanding what they watch.