...with you Josh. What's the purpose of putting forth an idea (media makes us immoral), then when that idea is questioned and alternate viewpoint presented, attack the person as if they have some mental deficiency, and not in the kindest manner either. If it's all about winning an argument, wouldn't it be better to persuade than to attack? Of course that would make it a discussion, and we can't have THAT, can we?
The media influences us, but it can't "make" us. It may have an effect on how we develop our viewpoints but even that's not certain which way the influence will go. Look at the reaction of us who were at the coming of age during the Viet Nam years. Just as many HATED the media as those who seemingly agreed with them. Many of us learned to see past the lies, the bias, and to become sharpened thereby, others chose to believe everything they heard, yet others tossed in with every sort of radical idea they came across. Besides those of us who watched the news, there was a huge number who only watched something considered entertaining or fun and eschewed the daily news, which admittedly was something of a "downer" and really hasn't changed.
What sort of influence does media, TV, have on us? Not just one sort, but all sorts of viewpoints. Does it have a particular bias? Yes, I believe so, but there is so much choice in what to watch and so much that goes ignored by this generation, I'd have to say those growing up now aren't as influenced by the media as they are influencing what constitutes the media.
Newspapers going down, the major networks fading from their former monopolistic glory days, the increase of internet related news formats, I'd have to say media only has the influence on us which we choose for the most part.
The only exception I'd make is for those children who in their early formative years have access to programming in their homes which should never be presented to them.
I've always used the evening news as a teaching aide myself if my children were watching at the same time, giving my thoughts on news that was being reported, taking exceptions to comments done by news anchors, explaining things from a different viewpoint. When done is such a manner, I think the views expressed by media, even though opposed to our own, can provide opportunity to help shape our children's manner of thinking and looking at life in ways we approve of.