Why does it seem like violence is on the rise? Because it is on the rise. What is causing violence to rise? Violence is a learned behavior and people are exposed to more of it either at home or in the community. In fact, studies project that violence will continue to rise. We can look to TV violence, violent multimedia computer games and violent music as significant causes of violence in society today. It typically begins in the family, expands through the culture and is reinforced often by the peer group. In some situations violence is glorified and/or justified for a cause whether it be religious or other causes. Violence is never justified unless it is in self-defense. We can provide our children with nonviolent solutions to problems such as stress management, assertiveness, problem-solving, impulse control and anger management. Have we as a society shrugged our responsibility for teaching effective coping skills instead of reinforcing violent behaviors? I observe this in my practice everyday, parents not enforcing consequences to inappropriate behaviors, people being bailed out and not serving the penalty for their actions and blame/justification being rampant in society. Take charge of yourself by implementing nonviolent strategies and teaching others to deal with anger in more constructive ways. Also limit the amount of time you spend viewing violence, instead surround yourself with the peacefulness of nature. Violence is a choice, make a good decision.