Jennifer Lawrence Speech: Anti-Corruption
Learn English with Jennifer Lawrence. Actress Jennifer Lawrence lays out a plan to save America. RepresentUs board member Jennifer Lawrence walks through three lines that show what’s wrong with legal corruption in the USA government, how to fix it, and what citizens can do about it. Jennifer is an American actress. The films she has acted in have grossed over $6 billion worldwide, and she was the highest-paid actress in the world in 2015 and 2016. Enjoy our Speeches with subtitles, and keep your English learning journey.
Jennifer Lawrence Quote:
“Be strong. Don’t be a follower. Always do the right thing.” Jennifer Lawrence
JENNIFER LAWRENCE FULL SPEECH TRANSCRIPT:
“We are witnessing a total political system failure in America. If you’re anything like me you may find yourself constantly overwhelmed by everything that’s wrong with politics. And when I say politics I’m not talking about Democrats or Republicans. I’m talking about the flaws that exist in our political system regardless of which party is in power. And I know, it’s hard to talk about politics these days, but look: The government is ours. We pay for it, so it needs to work for us. And right now it doesn’t. And I mean it really doesn’t.
So, what’s going on here? Is it Russian meddling and social media? Is it him? Is it her? No. Those two were the least popular presidential candidates since they began keeping track of such things. Only 4% of Americans have a great deal of confidence in Congress now. Just 4%. America is no longer even considered a full democracy. We are witnessing total political system failure in America. Which is the complete opposite of what our nation’s founders had in mind.
So I’m going to show you three lines that show what’s causing this failure, how we can fix it, and what you can do about it. So, here’s your first line. What I want you to do is take any issue you really care about and picture it on this line. This line comes from a Princeton University study that shows how public opinion influences the laws that Congress does or doesn’t pass. They looked at eighteen-hundred public opinion polls over a twenty-year period, and we took their data and plotted it in this chart. See this horizontal line? That shows public support for a law amongst average Americans. This vertical line? That shows the likelihood of the public support leading to the passage of a law. When you plot it for the average American, you get a line that looks like this.
There’s your issue sitting on that line. If there is zero support for a law, there’s about a 30% chance that Congress is going to pass it. And if there’s 100% support for something, the most popular thing ever, there’s still a 30% chance that Congress is gonna pass it. So the line is horizontal because no matter how much support there is among average Americans, there’s still a 30% chance that Congress is gonna pass that law.
Princeton determined that the “preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact on public policy.” How in the hell does this happen? Consider this. Politicians are spending up to 70% of their time raising funds for re-election after they get into office. Why? Because in order to win a seat in the Senate in some races, you would have to raise $45,000 every single day, 365 days a year for 6 years to raise enough money to win.
Now consider that only .05% of Americans give more than $10,000 to politics, and then you see why politicians have become completely dependent on that .05% of Americans (billionaires and special-interest groups!) who fund their campaigns. Meanwhile, you’ve got lobbyists writing our laws and donating to the politicians who pass them, we have a two-party duopoly of Democrats and Republicans that makes it so that independents can’t win, while the American people are leaving the major parties in droves.
As you can see here, nearly half of American voters are now registered independent. And then there’s gerrymandering, with politicians drawing the boundaries of their own voting districts into crazy shapes designed to prevent competition.
Today only 14% of House campaigns are actually competitive. 86% of them are not. And we wonder why young people feel that their vote doesn’t matter. I’ve covered a lot here, but it all adds up to this vast ring of influence over our elected leaders. It’s a corrupt system in which “We the people” have “near zero” influence over our own government… And that.. is sad….
That is not the country I feel like I grew up in. But what’s worse is that by allowing this to happen we are causing the failure of the most important issues facing our nation. We’re wasting trillions of dollars a year on fraud and abuse in our own government. One in five American children live in poverty. Our healthcare is the most expensive in the world. We have more people in prison per capita than Russia and China. We’re losing jobs to the rest of the world. And we’re not even doing enough to keep our air and our water clean for our children. America was founded on the promise of self governance. But instead we have statistically non-significant impact on public policy.
So, first of all, the US Constitution gives states sole control over how elections are run — even federal elections — so when we fix gerrymandering or election laws, that fixes the federal election in each state. That means that by going state-by-state, we have an immediate impact on how we elect Congress and how we hold them accountable. But there’s more… and that brings us to our second line.
This line is from a Bloomberg News study. It finds that throughout American history, passing state laws leads to federal victory. Let me show you what I mean. This chart shows the number of states over time that passed laws giving women the right to vote. When it hits the right side of the chart, that’s the federal victory. Okay, now I want you to watch the blue line. We’re gonna do this again with interracial marriage. There were a few states in the Northeast that made it legal, decades ago, and centuries go by and we hit this blue line where all of a sudden there’s a rush of activity, which leads pretty quickly to federal passage.
So here we are again, with same-sex marriage. One state, Massachusetts, for many years. A couple decades later we hit that blue line: a jump in state activity and federal passage. This isn’t about these issues. This is about a winning political strategy. The crucial finding in the Bloomberg study is that a “key event, often a court decision or a grassroots campaign reaching maturity, triggers a rush of state activity that ultimately leads to a change in federal law.”
So, fixing this problem IS possible. But how do we create our trigger moment for this issue? Well, the “Grassroots Campaign” from the study? That’s RepresentUs. We’re bringing conservatives and progressives together to pass Anti-Corruption laws all across America, using three strategic innovations: right-left coalitions, calling out corruption and building a movement. A big movement. And I’m gonna break them down for you.
Can I do this part? No.
First, right-left.This is how people self-identify in America. This isn’t party identification, this is how you feel politically. And as you can see, its 25% liberal, 36% conservative, and 34% moderate. But for the past 40 years, on the reforms I’ve outlined, it’s liberals speaking to liberals, using liberal language, with liberal messengers….. Liberal…. I just had to say that one more time. And you’re just not gonna change the political power structure of America with 25% of the people. Fixing corruption requires that we enlist all Americans, liberals, conservatives, and moderates who, as we’ve shown, overwhelmingly support reform.
Number two, corruption. When we talk about money in politics, gerrymandering, democracy, campaign finance reform… most people just tune out, but people are fired up about corruption.
And number three, we must build a movement. A big movement comprised of all kinds of people from all across America, fighting to pass anti-corruption laws, and then make sure they are implemented and protected.
So again, liberals and conservatives working together, corruption, and build a movement. This is the foundation of RepresentUs. We believe the government should work for every American, not just a handful of billionaires and special-interests. But it’s not just an idea. In a few years, we’ve already racked up 85 wins all across the country. And if we can get those 85 wins to 850 wins, we can fix our corrupt political system, save America, and get to work on fixing everything else that’s broken in our country. This is how we build this movement big enough to trigger that “rush of state activity that leads to a change in federal law….”
And that brings us to our last line. Right now this is you and right now these are all of the ways that you can help us go state-by-state, city-by-city to fix the corruption in American politics. Volunteer and join a RepresentUs Chapter — or if that’s not your thing, join the Common Wealth to make a monthly donation in support of someone who does volunteer. 100% of your money goes straight to passing these laws. Not to overhead or our expenses. Every voice matters. Your voice matters. If you do nothing, nothing changes. But if we all do a little. We can win, together. So the only question left is this… Will you cross that line? Join us at www.Represent.Us[/read]
Jennifer Lawrence Speech
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