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Can you really blame TV for teen pregnancy?

I just read a news story that was self described ad "groundbreaking".

According to the AP, "Groundbreaking "research suggests that pregnancy rates are much higher among teens who watch a lot of TV with sexual dialogue and behavior than among those who have tamer viewing tastes.
According to the study, teens who watched the raciest shows were twice as likely to become pregnant over the next three years as those who watched few such programs.Previous research by some of the same scientists had already found that watching lots of sex on TV can influence teens to have sex at earlier ages.

The study was released in the November issue of Pediatrics. 2,003 12- to 17-year-old girls and boys nationwide were questioned by telephone about their TV viewing habits in 2001. Teens were re-interviewed twice, the last time in 2004, and asked about pregnancy. Among girls, 58 became pregnant during the follow-up, and among boys, 33 said they had gotten a girl pregnant.
Pregnancies were twice as common among those who said they watched such shows regularly, compared with teens who said they hardly ever saw them.

I am not convinced that the TV shows in themselves are as much of a cause for teen pregnancy as is the lifestyle of kids who are watching this much TV. That is, if the kids had better things to do, such as study, work, participate in sports, walk the dog, etc., they would not be watching TV as much or thinking about acting out behaviors. Also, sometimes it can be hard to avoid sex on TV when you want to sit down and relax for a few minutes. If you change channel, you may be confronted with violent crime as opposed to sex. What's worse?

There are a lot more causes of teen pregnancy than sex on TV. While I'm not an advocate of sex on TV, I'm not going to point the finger at it when I know that the causes of teen pregnancy is a bit more complex than that.

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