White kids watch the least television: The Health Behavior in School-Aged Children survey provides numbers of the total hours of TV watched per day. The racial differences are large:
Percent watching 4 or more hours a day:
1. Blacks 43%
2. Hispanics 24
3. American Indians 22
4. Asians 19
5. Whites 11
This pattern does not simply reflect a lack of money to do other things: American Indians are poorer than blacks but watch less TV. The television (also known as the "babysitter") is often the easy way out for parents, so these numbers might be a measure of parental presence and effort. I imagine that watching lots of TV reduces physical health and social interaction, increases mental passivity, and promotes a distorted view of reality.
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