Pope John Paul II is urging the television industry to adopt a code of ethics.
In a written message Monday, the pontiff also said governments should enforce "reasonable ethical standards for programming that will foster the human and religious values on which family life is built, and will discourage whatever is harmful."Television can enrich family life but also can harm it "by propagating degrading values and models of behavior, by broadcasting pornography and graphic depictions of brutal violence, the pope said.
Parents have a particular re-spon-sibility to monitor use of the television set, he said.
"Parents who make regular, prolonged use of television as a kind of electronic baby sitter surrender their role as the primary educators of their children," the pope said.
He said parents should express their concerns to industry executives and suggested they join associations to lobby the media, advertisers and the government.