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The “New Norm” for Teenage Sexuality
Has Sexting Become Standard Operating Procedure for Teens?

Jonathan McKee and David R. Smith

We’ve been hearing a lot of sexting “hype” over the last decade.
“It’s a huge problem with today’s teenagers!”

“It’s not a problem at all!”
One report will tell us most...
JONATHAN'S BLOG: The TV America is Watching
I like to glimpse at the Nielsen charts every once in a while to see what Americans are watching on TV. And recently… it’s been football, Big Bang Theory, The Walking Dead, even more football, and The Voice.

For those of you who don’t care how the numbers work… here’s the most popular shows “families” are watching, listed by me, derived from three lists (if you’re curious how I’ve come up with these numbers, keep reading below).

Sunday Night Football                    23.7 Million Total Viewers
All other football                               football captures 5 of the top 6 spots    
The Big Bang Theory                      15.3 Million Total Viewers
The Walking Dead                          15.1 Million Total Viewers
The Voice                                          13.2 Million Total Viewers
Scorpion                                            11.5 Million Total Viewers
Scandal                                             9.9 Million Total Viewers
How to Get Away with Murder        9.7 Million Total Viewers

(and Simpsons, Modern Family, Family Guy and a few others are high with 18-49s, but not really competing overall, and American Horror Story is high for cable, but not overall)

Are these show always at the top? Yep. The same cluster is always near the top. For example, the previous week The Walking Dead premier actually beat out Sunday night football (more on that in this post of our blog, The Gospel According to the Walking Dead). But the same grouping was at the top.

So how come when you look at the charts in the paper you’ll see NCIS and Dancing with the Stars up there too? Good question.

A couple things you want to remember when you’re looking at the charts. First, the ratings most marketers target is those 18-49-year olds. That’s while you’ll see a chart for just that age group. That gives you a perspective of what most American families are watching, compared to the “total viewers” which includes many of the aging population (where NCIS always rises to the top of the list, because let’s face it, grandpa loves his NCIS!!!). And that’s another component to consider—the aging population watches waaaaaaaaay more TV than younger viewers. So grandpa and all his friends’ numbers skew the “total viewers” charts. Then there is cable, which is watched by everyone, but far less grandmas are watching The Walking Dead and American Horror Story, so you can be pretty sure those numbers reflect younger viewers.

So when I look at the charts on a site like, I look at three charts and compare the data. I look at this BROADCAST 18-49 chart to see what most families are watching during primetime on Broadcast.

img class="alignnone wp-image-8621" src="" alt="Primetime-TV--total-viewers" width="620" height="537" />

Then I scroll down on that same page at the second chart listed, BROADCAST TV for all ages, looking at how many millions of total viewers (all ages) watched those same shows. I did that in this chart below (I added the red, noting which shows were on the top chart, and where). That chart reveals that football, Big Bang and The Voice ruled the top 8 spots.

img class="alignnone wp-image-8622" src="" alt="Primetime-TV--total-viewers-RED" width="620" height="537" />

Then I compare those numbers with TOP CABLE SHOWS chart, which only shows total viewers. You can’t ignore the power of cable today. Many of the top awarded shows are cable. Today when I compare those numbers to the above chart, I’ll quickly see that The Walking Dead was in the running with The Big Bang, and actually beating out The Voice for total viewers.

img class="alignnone wp-image-8623" src="" alt="Nielsen-TV-top-cable-shows" width="620" height="313" />

When you compare all this data, you get my list above.

It will be interesting to see if the newer programming sticks around. Scorpion is an interesting new drama, where a bunch of hyper intelligent nerds work for the government to "save the day" each week. Not a bad show for families.

How to Get Away with Murder on the other hand, pushes the line in every possible way. In it's first few weeks, this ABC drama lacks any likable characters, with murder, backbiting, and strong sexual content (showing or eluding to oral sex- both genders already, gay sex, anal sex, good ol' fashioned sex... name it). Definitely one of the most irresponsible shows on the list. Although if you've ever tried a dose of some of these other highly popular shows like Family Guy or American Horror Story, I think you'd probably come to the same conclusion.

The question is... what are our kids learning from all this programming?


Season 5, Episode 2, Strangers
The gang is back together now, as evidenced by the trademark Reservoir Dogs slow-mo strut shot. Other than Beth, who is still MIA, everyone is accounted for. So for the first time in a long time, the group pauses to

Some kids are too cool to do anything.  Part peacock, part pubescent, their pride gets the best of them at almost every turn... NOT these kids.

My kids will laugh at silly jokes.  They eat Happy Meals.  They watch kiddie shows and are unashamed.  They wear cat ears, 3D glasses with the lenses taken out, and give themselves names like Batman, Nightwing, and Doctor Wolverine (that name is mine, by the way). They are nerds…to the EXTREME.  So of course, we get along JUST FINE.  

Nowhere is this hardcore geekiness more evident than at our awesome new boys group, Guys and Fries Thursday. Every week I meet a small group of junior high 6th and 7th grade guys at McDonald’s to eat french fries, play card games, and talk about important life topics. We build mountains of french fries and use ketchup packets to make them into volcanoes (or we would if the kids actually ATE KETCHUP with their fries). Last week we had an epic battle of slapjack and used the parable of the unforgiving servant to discuss the topic of forgiveness. We also went off on rabbit trails, leading to one kid talking for ten minutes about the best way to get out of a cave. After all, these are junior high school boys, so focusing is always an issue.  Many have the attention span of a 6-week-old-puppy in a field filled with butterflies.  

And that’s on a good day.        

And yet, in spite of the silliness and beneath the crazy laughter, coupled with the random card games and the nerdy times, there are real Gospel truths being presented, and barriers, like walls, that are tumbling down.  

See, some of these kids you’d never spot worshiping in the youth room at your church on a Sunday morning.  But campus ministry is a different animal altogether:  With us, atheists mingle with Christians, agnostics with Mormons, Jews with Muslims.

And that’s Youth for Christ/Campus Life at its best. That’s what we can be: A haven for people who do not know the Gospel; a place where kids can go to just be themselves. We gather representatives from various tribes, tongues, and nations together in one room to learn stories, build relationships, and point kids to Jesus Christ.  

This is just the beginning of what we’re doing here at a Sacramento suburb middle school.  In less than a school year, we’ve launched a successful weekly Monday Campus Life club, a guys group, and continue to build contacts within the community, all while maintaining a breakfast club that regularly sees an average of 120 students every Friday (we’ve written about that before in this column).

How are you reaching the campus near you?

Movie Reviews and Quick Q's:
Signal, The (9/23/2014)

Posted on October 10/22/2014, 2014 at 12:08 PM
Video Game Reviews @
Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale

Posted on October 10/9/2014, 2014 at 11:25 AM
Topical Curriculum:
Does A Suit Make the Difference?

Posted on October 10/9/2014, 2014 at 10:31 AM
Music Discussions:
All About That Bass

Posted on October 10/3/2014, 2014 at 12:00 AM
Outreach Resource of the Week RSS Feed
Forensic Self-Image
If your students struggle with self-image issues, check out this awesome resource on our YOUTUBE DISCUSSIONS page. They’ll learn they’re created in God’s image and more beautiful than they think. 

The Discussion Starter: Forensics and Beauty 
Dove is a company that has sold beauty products for decades, but recently, they’ve added a dimension to themselves that seeks to help their customers find their own inner beauty. Theirprevious videos and campaigns have been quite helpful in giving young people a more well-rounded understanding of 

Spiritual Growth Resource of the Week RSS Feed

This resource from our MUSIC DISCUSSIONS page will help your students confront their sinful nature and learn ways to operate in God’s power despite it.

The Song: Demons
The song is essentially about a protagonist who is warning others about his dark side, which obviously ties in well with the Biblical view of humanity. Interestingly, half the band members are from a Mormon 

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