The next generation will pay the price as trophy, canned and sport hunting are becoming increasingly more bizarre with hunters engaging children at earlier ages.
Do we need ratings for family activities?
In the USA there are ratings for movies, games and television shows. These ratings are to safeguard children from excessive and premature adult content, such as violence, language and sex.
Responsible parents pay attention to these when they make decisions about what’s appropriate for their children to watch and play. As children mature they are able to monitor themselves… or at least know when they are knowingly crossing the line.
Would you as a parent purposefully sit your elementary school age child down in front of an R rated movie full of killing and violence? Probably not.
Then you like me you will be shocked by this appalling trend among some parents who participate in sport and trophy hunting… getting their children involved in the killing.
Children are becoming today’s most unlikely victims of the cruel practice of canned hunting.
Families with children hunting African wildlife?
The first image of a family smiling over a dead giraffe had me shaking my head to make sure I wasn’t seeing things. Then recently Jonas with the International Animal Rescue Foundation World Action South Africa posted images of young children posing with dead animals. Again, I was taken aback.
Then of course there are the female teen hunters that have sought to gain popularity by killing and smiling sweetly.
Are children who are exposed to violence more likely to become the abuser, more prone to mental illness or experience a dysfunctional family later on in life?
Jonas was researching the issue of children exposed to violence way before he founded their environmental company.
Here is what he found over the years (we share it verbatim with his permission)…
Chilling Report on Children and Violence
This exposure to violence can be in the form of constant bullying, domestic violence even non-physical abuse such as shouting or belittling someone time and time again. Hunting was the main trait that I observed. I found (as strange it may read) – parents that subjected their children to “trophy hunting” were more likely to abuse or become violent within the seven years I studied this theory.
Children from the age of 10-18 were observed and closely monitored using a wide range of questionnaires aimed at themselves and their parents. The majority of parents agreed to be part of this study. In brief the conclusion showed that children exposed to “uncontrolled non-educative sport hunting” were more abusive, enacted more ASB’s traits with 8/15 sport hunting children committing acts of crime, showed signs of depressive illness, bullied, hit out out their own parents, vandalised, and were more likely to abuse narcotics and alcohol.
Strangely children that hunted for food of which their parents were present during most if not all hunts, were educated, and knew more about “conservation” compared to the trophy hunter showed little if any sign of such traits as the trophy hunter did.
Many of you may agree or disagree with these findings of which I still have yet to fully document on with my co-partner Dr Adrienne Ball forensic psychiatrist.
Sustainability of hunting means that the use of these natural resources must be assured not only in the present but also to future generations.
Trophy hunting is the selective hunting of wild game animals. Although parts of the slain animal may be kept as a hunting trophy or memorial (usually the skin, antlers and/or head), the carcass itself is sometimes used as food.
Please note: This article does not in any way shape or form change our stance on hunting.
Third party documentation
More than 60% of the children surveyed in the Comprehensive National Survey were exposed to violence within the past year, either directly or indirectly, and 46.3% were assaulted at least once in the past year. A little more than 25% of children witnessed a violent act and 9.8% saw a family member assault another.
Children may be exposed to violence at home, in the community, and in the media. This exposure can have significant effects on children as they develop and as they form their own intimate relationships throughout childhood and adulthood. Risk factors are cumulative; the risks for negative outcomes multiply, placing some children in “double jeopardy” (e.g., the child exposed to domestic and community violence). Children who are victims of direct assault or who witness repeated episodes of violence are more likely to have significant negative outcomes compared with children who are exposed to a single instance of violence.
Violence in the Home
Kennedy and colleagues found that children frequently observe or hear the abuse of domestic violence, as well as the aftermath of physical injuries and psychological pain. In a sizable percentage of cases, the children are actually physically involved in their parent’s partner violence and may themselves be injured.
Children exposed to intimate partner violence are subjected to the risks for neglect, abuse, exposure to trauma, and the loss of one or both of their parents. These traumas can lead to negative outcomes for children and may affect their well-being, safety, and stability. Childhood problems associated with exposure to domestic violence fall into 3 primary categories:
Psychological: fear, anxiety, low self-esteem, withdrawal, depression; problematic relationships; higher levels of aggression, anger, hostility, oppositional behavior, and disobedience.
Cognitive: lower cognitive functioning, poor school performance, lack of conflict-resolution skills, limited problem-solving skills, pro-violence attitudes, belief in rigid gender stereotypes and male dominance.
Long-term: higher levels of depression and trauma symptoms, increased tolerance for and use of violence in adult relationships.
Reaction and risk exist on a continuum. Some children demonstrate resiliency, while others show signs of maladaptive adjustment. Protective factors can help shield children from the adverse effects of exposure to domestic violence. These include social competence, intelligence, high self-esteem, outgoing temperament, strong sibling and peer relationships, and a supportive relationship with an adult.
Violence in the Community
In urban communities of the United States, children commonly witness violence, and most of these children report witnessing relatively less severe forms of violence, such as an arrest or assault. Exposure to community violence in suburban or rural communities has been explored less thoroughly.
Community violence, with its associated mental health problems, may affect a child’s ability to function effectively at school. Research demonstrates that increased levels of community violence are associated with decreased academic performance, as measured by grades, standardized test scores, and attendance. Psychological distress secondary to community violence exposure may be one explanation for these findings. However, few studies have examined mental health symptoms as a mechanism through which community violence exposure influences a child’s functioning at school.
Violence in the Media
Children in the United States age 8-18 years spend an average of 6 hours and 21 minutes each day using entertainment media (television, commercial or self-recorded video, movies, video games, print, radio, recorded music, computers, or the Internet), and children between 0 and 6 years of age spend an average of nearly 2 hours each day using screen media (television, movies, computers).[5-8]
Variances in population sampling, measuring criteria, and even the types of media have resulted in different outcomes in studies that addressed the relationship between media violence and human violence. Much of the literature on media violence was written in the post-Columbine era, and suggested both immediate and long-term effects on children. In 2007, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released its report on violent television programming and its effects on children, noting that there is “strong evidence” that exposure to media violence can increase aggressive behavior in children. More recently, Ferguson and Kilburn conducted a meta-analytic review of studies that examined the impact of violent media on aggressive behavior to determine whether this effect could be explained through methodological problems inherent in this research field. The results from their analysis did not support the conclusion that media violence leads to aggressive behavior, and they noted that it cannot be concluded at this time that media violence presents a significant public health risk.
While the effects of media violence may remain under debate, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) notes that research has associated exposure to media violence with a variety of physical and mental health problems for youth, including aggressive and violent behavior, bullying, desensitization to violence, fear, depression, nightmares, and sleep disturbances. The AAP further stresses that the strength of the association between media violence and aggressive behavior found in meta-analyses is greater than the association between calcium intake and bone mass, lead ingestion and lower IQ, and nonuse of condoms and sexually acquired HIV infection, and that it is nearly as strong as the association between cigarette smoking and lung cancer.
Violence exposure can have devastating effects on children and adolescents. However, nurse practitioners can use their prevention skills to minimize these effects.
Children’s exposure to violence typically refers to children who “witness or are victimized by violence” that can be domestic violence, bullying, sexual violence (rape) and/or trophy hunting. Violent traits also includes physical assault, peer victimization, sexual victimization, child abuse and maltreatment, as well as witnessing (seeing or hearing) in the home, school, or community. Exposure to violence, particularly multiple exposures, can interfere with a child’s physical, emotional, and intellectual development.
Children more at risk are those suffering already from NDD’s Neuropsychiatric illness or disorders such as ADHD, ADD, OCD, OCB or Conduct Disorder.
So bottom-line… parents stop it!
Get a grip and grow up. You may as well be sitting your child down in front of R rated movies.