Full Frontal with Samantha Bee Submission Packet – Second Round
ALABAMA CHEMICAL ENDANGERMENT LAW PITCH
Sam considers herself a friend to Alabama, and has heard rumors that the state has been making some reckless decisions due to an addiction to chemical endangerment legislation. She heads down there to check up on Alabama, in the hopes that it isn’t using.
Sam speaks with Casey Shehi, who tells a disturbing story about Alabama charging her with a felony under its “chemical endangerment of a child” statute for taking a harmless dose of Valium while pregnant. Sam doesn’t want to believe it, but hears from other women who tell similar tales of Alabama acting irresponsibly while under the influence.
Sam tries to understand where Alabama is coming from. After all, it’s been under a lot of pressure trying to deal with the issue of meth and opiates flooding its borders. The state was probably just trying to take the edge off with a little chemical endangerment legislation. It was just experimenting, no big deal.
However, things have spiraled out of control, and now it’s clear that Alabama has become a hardcore law-abuser. Sam realizes she has been an enabler by making excuses for the state. Sam finally takes a good, hard look at the increasing abuse of the law, noting that in the beginning, it was more about just using the threat of incarceration to force the mothers into treatment, but since then, the state’s tolerance has gone way up. Alabama is now dishing out harsher, more destructive penalties just to get that same feeling it once got from casual use.
Sam speaks with a legal analyst about the some of the negative consequences of Alabama’s law abuse, such as: the overly harsh sentences, disproportionate effect on the poor and women of color, and that it discourages women from seeking prenatal care, which often endangers the unborn child far more than the drugs the mother is taking.
Sam meets with Alabama justice Tom Parker, who pushed for, and continues to support harsh chemical endangerment laws to advance the personhood movement. Sam considers him a “law pusher” and “statute pimp” who, along with others of his ilk, intentionally got Alabama hooked on dangerous legislation so he could manipulate it into doing what he wanted (forcing a Supreme Court trial to dismantle Roe v. Wade). The statute pimp has put Alabama in his stable.
Sam also speaks with attorney Rebecca Green Thomason, a far right pro-lifer who explains that conservatives using this law to reduce abortion need to understand that the law actually increases abortion by exerting pressure on women to have the procedure so they can stay out of legal trouble.
It has become impossible for the people who love Alabama to sit back and watch the state continue to destroy itself like this. Its actions are hurting the people that count on it (the citizens of Alabama). Sam stages an intervention with a top Alabama official who supports the law. She gets them to attend by inviting them to sit down for an interview on some other innocuous topic. When the lawmaker arrives however, Alabama’s loved ones are gathered there to confront the state about the negative consequences of its law abuse and ask it to quit cold turkey, or at the very least, start weaning itself off. They read letters talking about how the state’s actions make them feel.
Sam explains that, not only is Alabama hurting itself, but it has become a bad influence on the states around it. Several others (Tennessee, South Carolina, Wisconsin) have started experimenting with similar laws, and getting mired in a similar cycle of problems.
Sam sends a counselor to the Alabama statehouse to approach lawmakers with an offer to be their sponsor, and help rehabilitate them through counseling sessions to help them discover emotional and/or psychological factors that may have contributed to their law abuse, and to help them make better choices (Ex. Shifting focus towards treatment of pregnant women with drug problems instead of punishment; Creating a statewide committee with female representation to protect women against the misapplication of the law).
The counselor will probably be told to get lost, in which case he will respond with empathy, noting that rehab can only be effective when the patient has a true desire to change, and that he will be there for them when that time comes. Right now, the state may consider itself a functional addict, but eventually it will bottom out.
PRISON DEBATE TEAM HEADLINE:
SO I WAS IN THE BACK OFFICE THIS MORNING, JUST GOING THROUGH MY NORMAL ROUTINE OF WATCHING THE NEWS WHILE FORCING AN INTERN TO PUSH BACK MY TOE CUTICLES WHEN I CAME ACROSS AN ASTOUNDING STORY.
[TAKE: VT-SOT: KEN WAYNE (FOX 2, 10-7-15): “A DEBATE BETWEEN THREE CONVICTED FELONS AND THREE UNDERGRADUATES FROM HARVARD COLLEGE ENDED IN A WAY THAT NOT MANY WOULD HAVE PREDICTED. A HARVARD DEBATE TEAM BEAT BY SOME PRISONERS.”]
THAT’S RIGHT, STUDENTS FROM THE MOST ELITE UNIVERSITY IN THE NATION GOT INTELLECTUALLY SHANKED FRIDAY BY A GROUP OF INMATES.
THIS WAS A VICIOUS EGO BEATDOWN CARRIED OUT BY HARDENED ARGUERS FROM CELL BLOCK D.
[TAKE: VT-SOT: BOB SIMON (CBS 4-15-07): “HERE IS THE EASTERN CORRECTIONAL FACILITY. (FLASH) MOST OF THE MEN GOT HERE BY COMMITTING VIOLENT CRIMES. ASSAULT, RAPE AND MURDER, WITH SENTENCES RANGING FROM 7 YEARS TO LIFE.”]
THE ONLY THING I WOULD HAVE EXPECTED INMATES WITH RAP SHEETS LIKE THIS TO DEBATE IS THE BEST WAY TO TAKE OUT A PUNK-ASS SNITCH.
SO HOW DID THEY END UP CROSSING CORTEXES WITH THE BRAINIACS FROM HAHVARD?
[TAKE: VT-SOT: (FOX 2, 10-7-15): “IT WAS ALL PART OF THE BARD PRISON INITIATIVE, WHICH OFFERS COLLEGE EXPERIENCE TO INMATES. (FLASH TO WASH. POST 10-7-15) ROBERT RIGGS: BPI IS VERY DEMANDING, AND THE EXPECTATIONS ARE EXTREMELY HIGH. (FLASH) DORRELL SMALLWOOD: THAT BROUGHT OUT A TENACITY IN ME TO JUST GO HARDER, STUDY HARDER. (FLASH) BPI STUDENT: THEY MADE AN INVESTMENT IN PEOPLE THAT SOCIETY HAD WRITTEN OFF.”]
THIS PROVES THAT JUST BECAUSE SOMEONE DIDN’T GO TO A FANCY SCHOOL DOESN’T MEAN THEY’RE STUPID, DAD.
THE INSPIRING MEN IN THIS PROGRAM ARE FORCING ME TO RETHINK MY NEGATIVE STEREOTYPES ABOUT PRISONERS, AND FRANKLY, THAT’S KIND OF A DICK MOVE ON THEIR PART.
SEEING PEOPLE IN JAIL AS IRREDEEMABLE MONSTERS DEVOID OF HUMANITY WAS REALLY WORKING FOR ME.
BUT THESE CLEVER CONS JUST HAD TO JIMMY THE LOCK ON THE NEWS CYCLE AND STEAL OUR HEARTS WITH THEIR CAN-DO ATTITUDE.
[TAKE: OTS/SS: IMAGE FROM WILLIE HORTON AD WITH THE WORDS “KIDNAPPING, STABBING, RAPING” UNDER HIS PICTURE]
NOW TO GET MY HEAD RIGHT, I’M GOING TO HAVE TO GO ON YOUTUBE AND WATCH THE WILLIE HORTON AD.
THANKS A LOT, JERKS.
[TAKE: VT-SOT: (VICE 9-27-15): SHANE SMITH: “TODAY, THERE ARE MORE THAN 2.2 MILLION PEOPLE BEHIND BARS IN AMERICA. THAT’S A 700% INCREASE SINCE 1970.”]
HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO CONTINUE NOT GIVING A SHIT ABOUT PEOPLE IN JAIL NOW THAT I KNOW THE TRUTH?
[TAKE: OTS/SS: HUXTABLE FAMILY]
IT’S LIKE TRYING TO WATCH THE COSBY SHOW AFTER FINDING OUT BILL COSBY WASN’T ACTUALLY MARRIED TO PHYLICIA RASHAD.
IT TAINTS THE WHOLE THING.
[TAKE: VT-SOT: MONTAGE OF PRISONERS IN SHOWS LIKE OZ, SONS OF ANARCHY AND BREAKING BAD SHANKING, RIOTING, STOMPING, ETC.]
THESE ARE THE NATURAL BORN KILLERS POP CULTURE HAS TRAINED US TO VISUALIZE WHEN WE THINK OF PEOPLE BEHIND BARS.
SEEING AN UPLIFTING GUY LIKE MICHAEL ROWE IN PRISON…
[TAKE: VT-SOT: (CBS 10-7-15) MICHAEL ROWE AT BPI COMMENCEMENT: “I WANTED TO BE A BETTER PERSON, AND AS I STAND HERE BEFORE YOU TODAY, I BELIEVE IT HAS MADE ME A BETTER PERSON.”]
…IS LIKE SEEING CHUCK TODD’S GOATEE
[TAKE: OTS/SS: CHUCK TODD]
THOUGH I CAN’T PROVE IT’S NOT WHERE IT’S SUPPOSED TO BE, SOMETHING ABOUT THE PLACEMENT FEELS OFF.
OH GREAT, NOW I’M GETTING CONCERNED ABOUT HOW LITTLE OUR COUNTRY INVESTS IN PROGRAMS TO GIVE PRISONERS A SECOND CHANCE WHEN I SHOULD BE PONDERING THE ETHICS OF GIVING YOUR SON’S PENIS A SOCIAL MEDIA SHOUTOUT.
[TAKE: OTS/SS: NUDE JUSTIN BIEBER NEXT TO FATHER’S CREEPY TWEET]
[TAKE: VT-SOT: (CBS 4-15-07): BOB SIMON: “HIGHER EDUCATION IN PENITENTARIES USED TO BE COMMON. BUT THEN IN 1994, CONGRESS ELIMINATED FEDERAL FUNDING FOR PRISONERS TO GO TO COLLEGE.”]
WHEN IT COMES TO LAWBREAKERS, AMERICANS WOULD RATHER THROW THE BOOK AT THEM THAN BUY THE BOOK FOR THEM.
[TAKE: VT-SOT: (NPR 3-11-14): ANDREW CUOMO: “FORGET NICE; LET’S TALK ABOUT SELF-INTEREST. YOU PAY $60,000 FOR A PRISON CELL FOR A YEAR. YOU PUT A GUY AWAY FOR 10 YEARS, THAT’S 600 GRAND. RIGHT NOW, CHANCES ARE ALMOST HALF, THAT ONCE HE’S RELEASED, HE’S GOING TO COME RIGHT BACK (FLASH 2-16-14) THE COST OF (FLASH) BARD COLLEGE: $5,000 PER YEAR.”]
FIVE GRAND?! FOR THAT KIND OF MONEY, I COULD BUY AN ENTIRE FETUS FROM PLANNED PARENTHOOD!
[TAKE: VT-SOT: (ERIE COUNTY REPUBLICAN COMMITTEE 2-24-14): VARIOUS STATE UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK AT BUFFALO STUDENTS: “I DON’T SEE HOW THAT’S FAIR. (FLASH) I WORK TWO JOBS (FLASH) MY MOM IS DISABLED AND WE CAN USE ALL THE FINANCIAL AID WE CAN GET. (FLASH) MAYBE I SHOULD HAVE JUST ROBBED A BANK INSTEAD.”]
NOW WE’RE TALKING!
THIS IS JUST THE EMOTIONALLY CHARGED ARGUMENT AGAINST AN EFFECTIVE POLICY I NEEDED TO GET THESE OL’ SHOULDERS A’ SHRUGGING AGAIN.
STILL GOT IT.
[TAKE: VT-SOT: (CBS 3-15-14): “GOVERNOR CUOMO’S OFFICE SAYS THE STATE HAS A 40% RECIDIVISM RATE. (FLASH) ONLY 4% WHO GET THE PRISON DEGREE GO BACK BEHIND BARS.”]
SO IF WE CAN JUST SUMMON THE POLITICAL WILL TO IMPLEMENT EDUCATION PROGRAMS FOR INMATES, IT WILL ACTUALLY SAVE MONEY, WHILE TRANSFORMING CRIMINALS INTO PRODUCTIVE MEMBERS OF SOCIETY?
FOLKS, IT’S TIME WE STAND UP AS A NATION AND DEMAND THAT THOSE DEBATE JUDGES JUST SAY THE INMATES LOST.
BECAUSE THIS IS AMERICA: FACING OUR PROBLEMS HEAD-ON IS NOT REALLY OUR THING.
WE’RE IN MORE OF A ‘NETFLIX AND CHILL’ MODE AT THE MOMENT, AND THE BARD PRISON INITIATIVE IS MAKING THE REST OF OUR JAILS LOOK BAD.
AND THAT MAKES US FEEL BAD.
SO WE ONLY HAVE ONE OPTION LEFT: PUT OUR HEAD BACK IN THE SAND AND HOPE WE DON’T DROWN WHEN THE WAVES OF PISSED-OFF RE-OFFENDERS COME RUSHING BACK INTO OUR SOCIETY.
WE’LL BE RIGHT BACK.