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Editorial: TV does not deserve blame

The Jerry Springer Show, well-known for its outrageous topics and guests, could face a civil suit after a guest was murdered after appearing on the show.

However, filing suits against shows such as Springer will continue a poor trend that insists television is responsible for the way people act. Television shows are not responsible for people becoming angry or for committing murder. The people who act in such ways should be held accountable for their own actions.

Nancy Campbell-Panitz was murdered by her ex-husband weeks after taping the show. Though the couple appeared on The Springer Show, there is nothing to prove this event would not have otherwise occurred at a later time.

It was the victim, Campbell-Panitz, who was humiliated and later murdered. Her murder was due to her ex-husband’s inability to let her go and move on with his own life as he insisted he had by marrying someone else. He has a documented history of abuse toward Campbell-Panitz that existed before the Springer appearance.

But once again, television is being blamed for things that happened after or outside of a show’s airing. No one can predict what someone will do after watching or being on a particular show. The fact that so few do commit criminal acts after watching or participating in such shows reveals that this is not a widespread phenomenon. Most people understand that shows such as Springer are meant for entertainment at a base level and are often not examples of how to live well.

The new trend of trying to hold the media responsible when bad things happen is ridiculous. People should make their own decisions and accept the responsibility of their actions, just like Panitz should at his trial, not Jerry Springer or his show.