OU Joins in Congressional Call for Summit on Media Violence

Posted on May 3, 1999 In Press Releases

Today, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, through its Institute for Public Affairs, announced its support for an initiative calling upon President Clinton to convene a White Summit to address the role and nature of media violence in the wake of the Littleton tragedy.

Senators Joe Lieberman (D-CT) and John McCain (R-AZ) and Representatives Dan Burton (R-IN) and Ed Markey (D-MA) wrote to President Clinton yesterday asking him to convene “an emergency summit…with leaders of the entertainment industry” in an effort to win “the cooperation of the nation’s cultural producers.”

Nathan Diament, director of the Institute for Public Affairs, issued the following statement in support of this effort:

Two years ago, the Orthodox Union was the lone national Jewish organization to join with congressional leaders, children’s advocates, and family groups to press for television program content ratings to be used with v-chip technology. We were pleased to join this important effort to aid parents in the monumental task of raising morally healthy children. Now, the tragic events in Littleton clearly compel us to redouble our efforts to protect our children from harmful images and messages.

While dealing with the influence of the media – through television, movies, music lyrics and video games – is but one aspect of what must be a multifaceted response to the Littleton tragedy, it is a highly significant one. Thus, the call for an emergency summit including representatives of the media industry, parents, children’s groups and religious communities should be acted upon as soon as possible.