Rebellion and emotional turmoil come with the territory of being a teenager. But how do you tell when it is routine teen angst or something beyond that? Which behaviors are normal reactions to the troubled and violent times we live in and which are warning signs of serious mental problems?
Experts discussed the more than 41 million Americans with no health insurance, and real people shared their experiences of trying to find healthcare. Leading medical experts agree that going without health insurance frequently leads to emergency hospitalizations, critical illness, and sometimes, premature death. Opening remarks were delivered by actor Noah Wyle of "ER."
Youth audiences are prized targets for TV shows, film, and advertising, but are kids growing up too fast? Do they suffer physically or emotionally from the messages conveyed in entertainment and advertising? What is our responsibility as influential adults and writers? Panel members included Al Jean, writer and executive producer of "The Simpsons"; Michael Borkow, writer and co-executive producer of "Malcolm in the Middle"; and Sharon Lee, co-president and co-founder of Look-Look. The moderator was Victoria Riskin, president of Writers Guild of America, West.
Fact-based storytelling raises complex challenges. Consider bioterrorism: Should you write about it, or will it alarm viewers or give terrorists ideas? How constrained by the facts should you be? Where can you get accurate information? What is your responsibility as a public citizen and as a dramatist?