I think thee is too much before watershed hours and too many gratuitous scenes. I don't have a problem with mild sex scenes on TV, but only as long as they are necessary to the plot or add something other than just sex for sex's sake.
Like Bryony, I don't have a problem with mild sex scenes on television as long as they are necessary to the plot and are featured on programmes after c. 8:30pm. That said, sex scenes and nudity are too much apart of advertisements and commercials for television programs during hours children could be watching. This makes is very difficult for parents to monitor their children's viewing habits.
Popular shows definitely have a lot more sex in them than they used to. Especially series continue they tend to include more sexual references as they go, even if they were quite innocent to begin with. The example I am thinking of is Smallville. It probably has something to do with the fact that the characters grow older so they include older themes, but that doesn't mean that all viewers are going to be getting older. Younger people will still start watching it even if they are watching the later the seasons that aren't necessarily appropriate for them.
There is nothing wrong with depicting non-violent, consensual, adult, heterosexual sex in context. In my opinion a little more would probably improve the public's mental maturity regarding the subject.
What is wrong is the depiction of violence because this erodes community tolerance for violence and leads to increasing conflict in society.
Few complain about the myriad of violent acts shown nightly to our impressionables, but overstep the low sexual threshold and you'd think that Satan himself had appeared.
I think it is interesting people get upset about sex - an act of love, but those same people have no problem with violence - an act of hate. Personally I think we have become way too censored with sex and way too permissive with violence.
I totally agree with you Kristen. The news is in child viewing times and shows too much graphic violence and dead and injured people, but that's OK, whereas nude people are not. That's twisted in my view. The 9/11 footage was an example of overdoing it in the extreme. It resulted in my daughter becoming phobic about flying because a stupid teacher showed her year 6 class the footage over and over.