OPEN MIKE - Broadcasting & Cable

Government keeps Hollywood drug depiction factual

Your recent editorial, "Lights, Camera, Government" (B & C, July17), left your readership with the erroneous perception that there was something new and untoward about the Office of National Drug Control Policy's work with the film industry. Nothing could be further from the truth.

In fact, our outreach efforts toward the film industry to encourage accurate portrayals on the dangers of drug use focus on providing technical assistance (such as access to experts and research). These efforts are part of a long history across the federal government, to assist the entertainment community in factually depicting drug issues and other complex subjects. We are providing them with the science-based information; they can elect to use it on their own terms.

Hollywood's creative community is ever increasingly driven to get the facts right-down to the coat button in the box-office hit Patriot. In providing them with the facts about drug abuse, our goal is merely to help them portray reality. And the realities of drug use are enough to turn young people away from drugs: HIV/AIDs, prostitution, overdoses, urban blight, diminished expectations, senseless violence and bright futures wasted away.

Broadcasting & Cable should support our effort to protect children by exposing them to facts.

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