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Supacase's avatar

Why is slapping treated differently than other abuse in the media?

Asked by Supacase (14543points) March 31st, 2010

I asked a related question a few months ago and most responses were that slapping is abuse. At what point is contact considered abuse and when should police be called

If this is true, why is slapping treated so differently in the media?

When someone is being beaten on TV – it is shown in a negative manner as a traumatic event, and rightly so. If one character slaps another one, chances are the audience (or laugh track) is chuckling away. Sometimes even a punch is “laughable.” Why is this so accepted in a society that cracks down on even slapping or punching in a legal manner?

Does the media’s treatment of these actions impact how seriously people view them?

Why the double standard?

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8 Answers

jaytkay's avatar

Because you can’t slap the teeth out of someone’s mouth.

wonderingwhy's avatar

circumstances and intent can change meaning. and TV is plot driven (wow, that’s debatable) it isn’t life.

sadly, I’d guess more than a few people probably base their actions or at least their perceptions as right or wrong because of what they see on tv, rather than considering it for themselves.

syzygy2600's avatar

An open handed slap is a lot less damaging than a closed fist punch. Everytime I’ve seen a “laughable” punch on tv it’s been a punch to the gut and not to the face. I think the idea is that violence that doesn’t leave a mark (like a slap to the face or a punch to the gut) can be funny but something that would leave a mark isn’t. Personally I think even a punch to the face can be funny, given the right context.

escapedone7's avatar

I don’t know! The three stooges wouldn’t have been the same without all their abusive dysfunctional antics. They were a little funny though.

Factotum's avatar

Women slapping men was for years an acceptable thing to show in movies and on TV. It’s dramatic and of course the man was ‘so tough that such a delicate little slap could never hurt him’.

Things are different now. Domestic violence has a name and there is little or no shame in reporting it. Violence in general is frowned on – to a degree I find, having grown up in an older generation, somewhat alien.

Berserker's avatar

Probbaly because it looks flashy, and we all know that anything flashy is always so much more deep and complex than mindless violence.

Supacase's avatar

I agree with @jaytkay, because I DO think there is a difference. If they showed someone getting the shit beat out of them on TV, it would never be portrayed as funny.

Yet, you can be charged with A&B – and found guilty – for slapping your spouse. Why is a single slap treated the same as a beat down in court, but completely different in society (based on TV and movies)?

YARNLADY's avatar

I saw a really bad example of that on TV just last night. A woman was angry at her boyfriend, and she slapped him, on a public street. He reacted with surprise and tried to explain, then she slapped him hard again. He said “Now wait a minute” and she proceeded to slap him a third time. I was shocked.

If the situation had been reversed, he would be arrested on the spot.

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