You’d think that an environment like that would have caused us all to evolve as greedy little psychopaths bent on theft and bloodshed, but the reality is more surprising.
Thanks to Yale University’s Infant Cognition Center, we now know that human beings seem to come equipped with a sense of right and wrong. And a recent study out of Canada seems to indicate babies also like it when bad people are punished and forced to pay for their misdeeds.
Psychologist Kiley Hamlin, the director of the University of British Columbia’s Centre for Infant Cognition, showed infants and toddlers puppet shows where good puppets helped other puppets and bad puppets robbed them.
Then, a third puppet was introduced who either rewarded the good puppets or punished the bad ones.
Surprisingly, children as young as four months old seemed to equally prefer both the good puppets as well as the ones who punished the bad ones.
I hope this new research causes the makers of children’s programs to rethink their saccharine-sweet plot lines and spice things up a bit. They could even take a horrible show like VeggieTales and have a spin-off called ReVenggie Tales.
In it, a group of anthropomorphic vegetables would travel around righting wrongs and striking down with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy their brothers.
If you’re reading this, please feel free to forward this suggestion to Big Idea Entertainment. I’d do it myself, but it seems companies can get restraining orders against people, and I’m legally prevented from directly sending them any more ideas on how to improve their god-awful programming.