Two young girls in China have committed suicide in the hopes of becoming time travelers, reviving a nationwide debate about the use of time travel in the entertainment industry.
The girls, both 12, drowned in a pond near their homes, according to the Wall Street Journal. Xiao Mei and Xiao Hua wrote suicide notes before jumping into the pond. The Shanghaiist.com obtained a copy of Xiao Mei’s suicide note, which reads: “In my life, I have two secret wishes. One is to time-travel back to Qing Dynasty and shoot a film with the emperor, and the other is to travel to outer space.”
China frequently airs TV shows that feature time travel achieved only after death.
The State Administration of Radio, Film, and Television has spoken against the genre for being “too disrespectful towards history and too causal in presentation.” Many fear that younger children are having problems separating reality from the science fiction they see on TV.
…90 percent of students at a local school reportedly believing in the power of time travel.
Wow. Often, I get some heat for being critical of TV or advertisements the depict nonsense or paranormal scenarios. Everyone knows that stuff is just for fun, they say. Well, they don’t. Well adjusted adults might understand. But, not everyone is perceiving things the same way, some may suffer from mental deficiencies or illnesses and children may just not know the difference, especially when culture reinforces it. That’s why I found this story interesting. Here is more with another example…
Time-travel TV series have become very popular in recent years. Typically, the story is about modern people accidentally traveling to the ancient past and falling in love with a royal family member.
According to a media report in February, a 19-year-old Liaoning province woman, Xiao Dan (not her real name), told police she had paid 1,800 yuan ($285) to a Net friend who claimed she could help her travel to the ancient past but disappeared after receiving the money.
Because of several stories along these lines emerging, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television banned prime time – 7 to 9 pm – broadcasts of this kind of TV series at the beginning of this year.
I’m not sure banning the shows are the answer. But encouraging open discussion is crucial! I can’t tell if the shows they mention are clearly portrayed as fiction or more like the crap documentaries on the paranormal we see on “serious” channels like The History Channel, or the “reality-themed” adventure shows on The Travel Channel or Animal Planet. (Ghost Adventures and Finding Bigfoot, I’m pointing a critical finger at you!) This may be an isolated event but that statistic “90% of students believe” ??? If that is even CLOSE to accurate, that is very frightening and there is a problem here.