Friday, June 8, 2012

Prevent Child Abuse America, Stop It Now!, and Darkness to Light's letter to Columbia Pictures regarding the release of "That's My Boy."

Yesterday we shared the STATEMENT - here - we released along with Darkness to Light and Stop It Now! regarding our position on the release of the new Adam Sandler movie "That's My Boy." In the STATEMENT we reference the letter we sent to Columbia Pictures spelling out our concerns and providing a series of responses we suggest Columbia Pictures pursue in partnership with our organizations to adress these concerns. Today we want to share that letter with you.

May 21, 2012

Jeff Blake, Vice Chairman
Sony Pictures Entertainment
Chairman, Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group,
Worldwide Marketing and Distribution
10202 West Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232

Dear Mr. Blake,

After reading numerous media stories about the content of Columbia Pictures new movie “That’s My Boy,” we are very concerned that that this picture makes light of statutory rape in its depiction of a thirteen-year old boy’s sexual relationship with his teacher at school. The mission of our organizations is to prevent child abuse and neglect of any type before it ever occurs. This mission is helped when we engage individuals, organizations and “institutions” to recognize a collective responsibility to ensure our nation’s children have an opportunity for healthy child development.

One such responsibility is to ensure that the portrayal of abuse is not treated with humor. “That’s My Boy” has crossed this line and indicates that there is some confusion about the appropriate response to the idea that a thirteen-year old boy is in a sexual relationship with an adult authority figure. This is rape, plain and simple, and the idea that it would be portrayed as titillating or cool is an antiquated understanding of sexual abuse and healthy child development. This confusion must be eliminated through deliberate actions by responsible adults who share a common vision that all children have the right to a happy and abuse-free childhood.

We believe the controversy around this movie and how you choose to handle it, however, provides us with an opportunity to join forces, advance this cause and further educate the public that we not only all play a role in children’s lives, but that all adults are responsible for the prevention of child sexual abuse. Given this, we would like to propose that our respective organizations partner to:

 Provide sexual abuse prevention training to your creative and marketing staff members;

 Create a series of public service announcements that (1) provide parents and communities with vital sexual abuse prevention information and tips and (2) advocate for public policies that support sexual abuse prevention programming; and/or

 Visit the websites of the three signers of this letter for the FAQ’s.

We believe that together we have the chance to make a meaningful impact in the lives of children. We will follow-up in the near future to explore the ways in which we may accomplish this. In the meantime, feel free to contact James M. Hmurovich, President & CEO, Prevent Child Abuse America, at (312) 663-3520, extension 810.


Prevent Child Abuse America

Stop It Now!

Darkness to Light

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