Cenk speaks to Julie Stewart, the president of Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM), and Ric Roman Waugh, writer/director for the movie “Snitch” — starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson — which is based on a true story of a teenager facing imprisonment under Mandatory Minimum laws in the US unless he reveals another name to authorities.

Cenk asks, “How often does this happen — that the person who’s actually the least guilty, but doesn’t know anybody else who is guilty, winds up getting the biggest punishment?” Stewart says, “It happens all the time.” She says the original 1980s laws were set up to target drug kingpins, but the problem is major drug runners often have plenty of names to help make deals with authorities. Meanwhile, the lowly, sometimes unwitting accomplices have nothing of value to federal agencies and often get jail time. Stewart says, “It’s one of the reasons our prisons are overflowing with drug offenders.”

Jim Clemente, TV writer for “Criminal Minds” and a former FBI supervisory special agent, and Alison Bailes, film critic for MORE Magazine, join John Fugelsang on “Viewpoint” to consider whether Kathryn Bigelow’s Oscar-nominated film “Zero Dark Thirty” is pro-torture given its depiction of the events leading to the death of Osama bin Laden.

“I think in general, it does in fact say that torture actually worked, and that’s incorrect,” Clemente says.

“I don’t feel like the film is pro-torture, though, which a lot of people are saying it is. Anyone sitting through that film, you cannot come out of it and say torture’s a good thing, you’d have to be a sadistic lunatic to think that,” Bailes says. “This is a film that condenses 10 years into two-and-a-half hours, so clearly characters are conflated, information is condensed, so I think that we have to look at this as a cinematic piece of art rather than a documentary piece of fact.”

"If it is true that one death is a tragedy and a million deaths is a statistic, then this story is a statistic."

Director/writer/producer Dylan Mohan Gray made a film about human beings who have become statistics, and he opened it with the above quote. The film, “Fire in the Blood,” is one of two Indian documentaries to make it into Grand Jury competition at this year’s Sundance Film Festival.

(read more @ link)

Editor’s note: This is part of a series shining a spotlight on documentaries highlighting political and global issues at the Sundance Film Festival through interviews with their subjects and directors.

Don’t forget to tune to Current in TONIGHT at 8E/5P to catch the television premiere of the award-winning documentary “More Than Me” starring Jim Breuer. Learn more about the film and be sure to set your DVR!

Don’t forget to tune to Current in TONIGHT at 8E/5P to catch the television premiere of the award-winning documentary “More Than Me” starring Jim Breuer. Learn more about the film and be sure to set your DVR!

Whoever made this is a genius, and Rush Limbaugh is an idiot. 

Whoever made this is a genius, and Rush Limbaugh is an idiot.