Extreme far-left comedian Samantha Bee jumped fully on board the “defund the police” movement on Wednesday’s edition of Full Frontal. Assuring her audience that the radical proposal “isn’t a far-fetched idea,” Bee spent an entire segment acting as a spokeswoman for the latest fad.
After describing the implementation of body cameras as “weak tweaks,” Bee proclaimed “there is something we can do. We can defund the police.” Bee proceeded to recite left-wing talking points about how “defunding the police means we can scale back police budgets over time; which will allow us to relocate to things that actually keep our community safe, like education, mental health care, affordable housing, and violence prevention programs.”
Responding to Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s proposal to cut $150 million from the LAPD, Bee complained “it’s still not enough,” noting that Garcetti's proposed cut “still gives the department $1 billion.” The TBS host argued that “police don’t need that much money,” justifying her position by pointing to the fact that “crime rates have been steadily going down since the 90s.” Demonstrating immense naivety, Bee failed to make the connection that tough on crime policies implemented in the 1990s caused the drop in crime; which had surged out of control at the time.
Later in the segment, Bee urged viewers to go to her website to “get more information on movements” to defund the police in a variety of major cities and take advantages of “resources to contact key officials in your state.” Bee directed a message to those who “don’t live in those cities,” asking them to “start talking to elected officials about budget justice yourself.”
As the segment came to a close, Bee claimed that “defunding the police isn’t a far-fetched idea.” A recent poll conducted by ABC News and Ipsos proves that the American people disagree with that sentiment. When asked whether they supported or opposed the efforts to “defund the police,” 34 percent of Americans expressed support for the idea while 64 percent opposed it.
For her part, Bee did not seem at all concerned about pushing for an idea overwhelmingly opposed by the American public: “we can’t afford to keep dismissing the best ideas just because they make people feel uncomfortable or because they aren’t politically popular.” It looks like most of the support for defunding the police comes from the liberal media. John Oliver, another liberal activist masquerading as a late-night comedian, as well as Democratic political operative turned “objective” journalist George Stephanopoulos, have also given their seals of approval to defunding the police.
Outside of the insulated liberal media bubble, defunding the police does not come off as one of the “best ideas,” it is regarded as “one of the worst ideas.”
A transcript of the relevant portion of Wednesday’s edition of Full Frontal is below. Click “expand” to read more.
Full Frontal With Samantha Bee
SAMANTHA BEE: Welcome back to the show. As our nation finally musters the moral courage to give a collective f*** about police brutality, people are demanding reforms. Unfortunately, many of those reforms fall short. Take body cameras. They’re intended to protect people by recording police interactions and by 2016, nearly half of all law enforcement agencies had implemented them. Yet, a review found that they had next to no effect on checking police behavior. It’s like how having to do a weekly Zoom call with TBS hasn’t stopped me from celebrating Topless Tuesdays. But it’s not just body cameras that aren’t effective, it’s also a lot of reforms.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
YVETTE FELICIANO: Many police forces have implemented diversity initiatives or anti-bias and de-escalation trainings. There is no empirical evidence that these types of strategies improve police-community relations.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BEE: Given the enormous harm being done to black and brown communities, we can’t only keep responding with the same weak, incremental tweaks. The murders of Mike Brown, Tamir Rice, and Eric Garner all inspired waves of reforms in cities across the country but over 1,000 civilians were still killed by cops in 2019. George Floyd himself was killed in a city that’s been called a shining star of police reform. Police reform hasn’t brought about the change we need but there is something we can do. We can defund the police.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MISKI NOOR: Right now’s the time to defund the police and really invest in our community.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BEE: Defunding the police means we can significantly scale back police budgets over time; which will allow us to relocate that money to things that actually keep our communities safe, like education, mental health care, affordable housing, and violence prevention programs. All things that can help reduce crime in the long run. America spends a combined $115 billion on policing. Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Oakland, and Orlando all spend more than a quarter of their general funds on policing. In New York City, the NYPD budget is almost $6 billion, more than the funding for health, homeless services, youth development, and work force development combined, and half a billion just goes to the rings our cops make de Blasio kiss. Some cities have recently responded to public pressure and started rethinking their police budgets. It’s still not enough. Last week, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced he would cut $150 million from the LAPD’s budget; which still gives the department $1 billion. Do you have any idea what you could do with $1 billion? You could buy the Miami Marlins and replace them with actual marlins. The police don’t need that much money. We don’t need more lethal weapons and not just the Mel Gibson kind. Although that kind, too. Crime rates have been steadily going down since the 90s, just like your mom. What? No, not the time? Opposite of the time? Okay. Defunding the police is just the start. We also need to change how police officers are used at all.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)
ALEX VITALE: In many cases, the solution to some of the problems with policing is not rejiggering what we do but to just quit using police for that function altogether.
FELICIANO: Although police have little training in mental health, about 10 percent of police interactions involve a person with a mental illness and one in four people with mental disorder have histories of arrest.
(END VIDEO CILPS)
BEE: Sending a police officer to deal with a mental health crisis is like sending me to host John Krasinski’s “Some Good News.” I got nothing. Even former Dallas Police Chief David Brown agrees that the cops shouldn’t be getting called for every situation.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID BROWN: Every societal failure, we put it off on the cops to solve. Not enough mental health funding? Let the cop handle it. Not enough drug addiction funding? Let’s give it to the cops. Here in Dallas, we got a loose dog problem. Let’s have the cops chase loose dogs.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BEE: You know what, I’m almost fine with the police chasing loose dogs because then maybe we could solve the cold case of “who let the dogs out?” Who, Commissioner? Who? Who? Who? Who? Who? Fortunately, some cities like Dallas are already dispatching social workers to respond to certain 9-1-1 calls and it’s working. People are getting mental health care instead of being sent to jail; which helps everybody. Other major cities like New York, Chicago, Detroit, L.A. and D.C. have violence interruption programs that aim to train people in their communities to defuse conflicts before they escalate and guess what? Those programs are also working. Look, I know a lot of this sounds hard. No shit, it is. But we can’t afford to keep dismissing the best ideas just because they make people feel uncomfortable or because they aren’t politically popular and there are concrete steps we can take toward defunding right now. Movements in New York, Minneapolis, Los Angeles, Oakland, Philadelphia, Nashville, and Austin are already making progress pressuring their mayors and city councils to divest funding from police departments and then reinvest it where it’s needed. You can go to SamanthaBee.com/TakeAction to get more information on the movements in each of those cities plus resources to contact key officials in your state. Even if you don’t live in those cities, start talking to your elected officials about budget justice yourself. Call, e-mail, get creative. Just don’t stand outside Bill de Blasio’s window holding up a boom box blasting “F*** the police.” He’s already horny enough for them as it is. Defunding the police isn’t a far-fetched idea. Some cities have already taken steps in that direction and no developed country polices people like America does. We have to be willing to reimagine a better world. Black lives are depending on it.