Benefits of television?

Apparently, it's the 40th anniversary of Sesame Street. Which reminds me of a thought I had.

The other day, I was watching Sesame Street with my older son. I was glad to see that they showed some kids in wheelchairs. My younger son may well need a wheelchair, and I was glad the kids who watch were seeing other kids in wheelchairs so it becomes a bit more normal.

And then it occurred to me that Sesame Street had been aggressively diverse and multi-racial since its inception. And almost every kid in the country watches it. And, as became apparent in the last election, there's a real generational divide in terms of racist attitudes. Young people are MUCH less inclined to be racist, even in very homogenous areas.

There's no way to test this, of course, and there are certainly other contributing factors, but I have to wonder if TV, generally derided as being so bad for children, had anything to do with this shift.

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