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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2248256-taking-the-second
Rated: E · Script/Play · Legal · #2248256
a second attempt at a script.
Taking the second

by J P Fellows


EXT WASHINGTON PARK LATE SUMMER MORNING.

Beneath the titles and music. a JIM an older man in a comfortable bespoke suit looking every bit the senior law professor, is cutting through the park on his way to meet a friend. As he leaves the park he stops at a mailbox to post a bunch of letters. Some of the addresses are for; the FBI, the district attorney's office, and media outlets. The music ends on an ominous note. He goes down the street and crosses to a café

INT CAFÉ CONT

The camera on Jim as he enters, the camera pans to settle on GORDON another older gent similar to Jim Gordon is looking annoyed at a model of a house. It has a circular base square front and back elevations and triangular sides. There is the noise of Jim getting settled with his coffee and croons.

                   GORDON

Look at this.
it's perfect.
First semester every year I give my new students the same problem, make me a model of a house square front, round base, triangle sides.
Those who say it can't be done until they see one are the future architects of this country.
Second-rate skyscrapers, third-rate urban development, bargain-basement bridges, and minimum standard infrastructure.
Those that turn in perfect models assembled from five separately cut parts. Are the future architectural engineers. They are the ones that give me hope
Just occasionally I get the end cut off a kitchen role tube with its cut pinched together end taped closed. Those are the students that might make a difference, they are the ones with a vision the ones worth teaching.
But this.
He couldn't think how to do it so he got the computer to do it for him.
He actually wrote that in his report on the project.

                   JIM

I hear what you are saying.
We all do it.
A simple question to separate the worthwhile from the dross.
My standard question is.
Divide the amendments to the constitution into those that are primarily about the state, and those that are primarily about the citizen.
I consider it a good year if there are fewer than three Fs.
One year I changed the question and asked
Under which amendment to the united states constitution is it currently legal to keep slave labor.
Not one of my students.
Students doing a course on constitutional ethics, by the way, could be bothered to open up a copy of the constitution and read what it actually says.
They all knew what the constitution says, better than its authors.
I gave them all F's
The Dean overturned the grade.
Still, at least I won't have to go through it next year

                   GORDON

As the doctor gave you the long face.

                   JIM

No after nineteen years of teaching constitutional ethics to lawyers who then spend their working life trampling on the constitution. I've decided to stand up and defend the constitution of the united states of America.

                   GORDON

You're not going to do something stupid, are you?

                   JIM

Very stupid.

                   GORDON

What about Cynthia what will she say.

                   JIM

I know exactly what she will say.
And then she'll back me to the hilt.

FADE OUT
FADE IN

EXT ON THE STEPS OF THE SUPREME COURT LATER THAT AFTERNOON

A CROWED with hunting riffles and placards cheering a REBEL ROUSING POLITICIAN. Jim is amongst them waving an antique jewelling pistol. The politician raises his arm to wave to the crowd. Jim shoots him in the armpit with a lead ball. Jim drops his weapon as the crowd and SECRET SERVICES AGENTS jump him.
The politician staggered a bit regained his composure coughed up a bit of blood and was lead away.

FADE OUT
FADE IN

INT AN INTERROGATION ROOM DAYS LATER

Jim is there in a clean suit his face and movements show the beating he had taken. DR SMITH enters

                   DR

Do we know why we are here?

                   JIM

I'm here because I shot and killed a man,
I suspect that you're here to rubber stamp that I am lucid rational and fit to attend my arraignment hearing.
I have no idea why you think your here.

                   DR

Don't be like that.
This is more than a rubber-stamping exercise.
Why did you shoot that man?

                   JIM

Because I considered it to be the right thing to do.

                   DR

Do you always do what you think is right.?

                   JIM

Don't you.

                   DR

About this manifesto of you....

                   JIM

What manifesto?

                   DR

The one you sent to the media

                   JIM

Have you read this supposed manifesto. no. Because it does not exist, all I sent the media was a short letter outlining my intended actions. And that I intend to plead not guilty. claiming the second amendment as my defense. It said nothing about my motivations.

                   DR

The second amendment gives you the right to bear arms. it does not give you the right to go around shooting people.

                   JIM

The second amendment places upon the citizen a duty to....
and I have carried out that duty honestly and to the best of my ability.

                   DR

The press is reporting...

                   JIM

Are you in the habit of basing your psychological evaluations on hearsay?
I am lucid
I am aware of my surroundings.
I can make a rational argument.
Rubber stamp me as fit stand trial.

FADE OUT
FADE IN

Part 2 if I bother to write it will all take place in the courtroom and deals with the question, does the fifth amendment ban the prosecution from trying to get the accused from incriminating themselves? Does the second amendment require Americans to kill rabble-rousing politicians? Have most Americans ever read the documents, or do they just think it says what someone has told them it says? Do they know the correct definition a tyrant?


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