Stars Shine Light on Media Literacy Efforts

Jun 5, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Worried about congressional calls for legislation and regulation, Hollywood’s creative community is rolling stars out to Washington to deliver a message about boosting media literacy efforts.
In an appearance on Capitol Hill, Creative Coalition co-president Joe Pantoliano joined actors Tim Daly, Kerry Washington, Wendie Malick, Richard Schiff and Hallie Kate Eisenberg and U.S. Rep. Mary Bono, R-Calif., to promote media literacy efforts as a way to avoid First Amendment regulatory issues.
At a press conference to launch a task force on children’s online safety, the actors said they envisioned their efforts being about more than just the Web. However, they’re open to working with legislators to craft a program that would meet children’s needs.
“It’s a task force. It’s a dialogue. It’s the opening of a discussion,” said Ms. Washington, who was featured in the movies “Ray” and “The Last King of Scotland.” “We are not standing up here and saying any ‘shoulds’ at all. We are saying a conversation needs to be had so we can end a problem that already exists and stop any problems that already exist.”
“It is important that we as creative people explore the entire spectrum of the human condition and I think that it is important for us as members and citizens of the United States to be able to talk about this full spectrum,” said Mr. Daly. “What is great about this initiative is we can hopefully head off a discussion about curtailing our rights to do that.
Mr. Pantoliano and others suggested that laws are unlikely to stop predators, so education is the best alternative.
“Predators don’t respect the Bill of Rights,” he said.
Robin Bronk, the Creative Coalition’s executive director, said the group is joining with Safety4Kids, the creator and producer of PBS’s “SeeMore’s Playhouse,” and with associations and media partners like Time Warner and Parenting magazine, in an effort to make media literacy a national priority.
(Editor: Horowitz)


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