The second most influential social institution in the mass media. This is due to the electronic age we live in and the rapid growth of the rate of exposure and audience of media outlets. Traditionally there has always been a standard newspaper of some sort but there are so many different strongly opinionated mediums that target specific audiences with their views. Magazines tell you how to dress, how to act around your friends, what your home should look like, and how to generally be accepted into society; and it absolutely works. You see people every day that have the living room right out of “Better Homes and Gardens” or the girl dressed mirror image to the models walking down the runway in “Seventeen Magazine”. There are so many different news outlets, each telling their own version of a different story or case to try to get you to agree with their opinion on a certain conflict. The Trayvon Martin vs. George Zimmermann case for example: FOX, NBC, CNN, ABC are just a few major news stations that each reported a very slightly biased version of the story on this case. Some were in favor of the shooter, some were in favor of the victim, but there isn’t a single news media outlet that just reports facts, everything is in someone else’s opinion of some sort. It prevents individuals from thinking for themselves and forming their own opinion based on fact, instead it just conditions individuals to adapt to the stance of others.
Religion is a social institution I believe to be becoming less and less significant. The relationship between society and religion is very difficult to take seriously because there are so many variations of essentially the same types of religion that all completely shun each other. In the eyes of an outsider, it is a joke. More and more people convert religion now than ever before, and even those who may believe in a certain religion don’t practice or participate in a religious community. I believe religion and the “guidelines” that accompany it will continue to be less and less influential over time. Even war based on religion is evolving to be less so. A war began with the suicide terrorists on September 11,