Family and activism are the two words that come to mind when talking about Mary Streep. Raised in a close knit family in Summit, New Jersey, she married her high school sweetheart and went on to raise four children.
Graduating from New England College with a degree in Elementary Education she became involved in the foster care system, adopting a child and becoming a court-appointed Special Advocate. Not settling merely for one challenge, she has helped renovate a battered women's shelter in Newark.
But talk about television and its impact on children, and her true passion becomes evident. Even her friends realize that Mary is worried about the lack of responsibility in television. She is outraged by the content of television programming and that those in charge seemingly do not take responsibility for what they send over the airwaves. She often says that television, though a potent product for change, is also "polluting the minds of our children."
But she's realistic enough to realize that not all television programming is bad. Children, she believes, are impressionable, and that means that television programming must take that naiveté into account. "I am determined," she says, "to do everything I can to bring back that responsibility because we are all in this together. We all will raise the next generation of children, whether we like it or not. That's why I'm a part of the Parents Television Council."