Professional wrestling (PW) has gained a firm foothold in American culture and appears to be here to stay. Children comprise a large portion of its audience, much to the dismay of many parents and clinicians. Society has struggled with how to respond to their children's fascination with PW, a novel hybrid between sports and entertainment. Parents expose children to sports, thinking they will learn healthy ways of managing conflict and aggression. However, PW is not a sport. Its values are the exact opposite of traditional sportsmanship; it demonstrates to children that cheating and verbal intimidation are effective problem-solving techniques. Because PW resembles sports, children risk applying its values to legitimate sports, as well as other realms of life. Parents can prevent this association by differentiating PW from sports, and the entertainment industry can prevent it by stopping their aggressive marketing of PW to children.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health