For the great majority of Patriots, growing up on the Eastern Seaboard during the ’90s evokes memories that fill one with the nostalgic longing for yesterday. In neighborhood playgrounds across the states, Pokémon battles erupted among elephant pants-clad elementary schoolers, Pluto was still a planet, a hot plate of Pizza Pockets awaited in the kitchen after school and Walkmans were all the “rage.” Times were good but even better once Saturday morning arrived, when one ran down to the family basement and binged on all the new cartoons of the week.

These days, kids don’t get excited over Saturday mornings like they once used to. The Millennial generation is now coming to an end and the new additions to our society, Generation Z’ers, are not given the justice they deserve from television programming. The moral education that was once provided through shows such as “The Wild Thornberrys”, Rocket Power, “Zoom!” and “Doug” have been replaced by mindless humor, inappropriateness and bad role models. This does not bode well for the future.

As children, the Millennials were graced by a set of programs that exemplified the changing morality of our nation. Becoming less conservative and embracing all the diversity that was becoming a part of the classroom was a big theme in many TV shows. However, shows today are becoming a bit too “modern” with lewd material much too mature for a younger audience being shown on a regular basis. Watching Cory make all those dumb errors, and then have Mr. Feeny give him a moral education has been replaced by clubbing adventures in “Jersey Shore” — a show that gains more than 50 percent of its audience from the “tweens” of today. The all-too-adult content of this show is introducing a type of dangerous revelry that kids see as the norm, and this is true for much of today’s programming.

Perhaps the greatest disappointment of today is the lack of role models. In the ‘90s, American teens had an actor or actress who they could look up to, from Amanda Bynes to Frankie Muniz. In the 2000s, these role models turned into irresponsible individuals who made poor decisions. From DUIs to underage pregnancies, current actors represent a small percentage of modern teenagers who are not fit to give anyone any advice! The steady degradation of suitable television role models within our society is inevitably leading to a less-wholesome upbringing for many children in America.

Overall, the quality of television is definitely declining within the United States. The type of content shown has gone from innocent and helpful to mature and vulgar. Today’s kids are definitely at a risk with all of these negative external influences. What this bodes for the future of America is unclear, but it’s definitely foreseeable that as innocence dies out, kids will be absorbing content that is neither appropriate nor safe for their growing minds.