Exclusive - Lori Silverbush & Kristi Jacobson Extended Interview Pt. 1

  • Aired:  02/26/13
  •  | Views: 76,471

In this exclusive, unedited interview, documentarians Lori Silverbush and Kristi Jacobson argue that hunger in America is a solvable problem. (8:09)

>> Jon: WE WILL IMOOK.

MY GUESTS TONIGHT ARE THE FILMMAKERS BEHIND THE NEW DOCUMENTARY HUNGER IN AMERICA A

PLACE AT THE TABLE.

>> ARE YOU GOING TO TAKE THEM OFF?

>> GOOD JOB ON THE BASKETBALL GAME.

>> IT'S SOMETHING IMPORTANT, THE CHURCHES AND COMMUNITY GROUPS THAT HANDOUT OUT ARE DOING AN

INCREDIBLE SERVICE TO THOSE EXPERIENCING HUNGER BUT IT'S A QUICK FIX FOR TODAY AND TOMORROW

AND MAYBE NEXT WEEK.

>> WE CALL IT EMERGENCY FOOD.

IT'S NO LONGER EMERGENCY FOOD.

IT'S CALLED CHRONIC USE OF A BROKEN SYSTEM FOR WHICH PEOPLE CAN IN THE BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE.

>> Jon: PLEASE WELCOME TO THE PROGRAM LORI SILVERBUSH AND KRISTI JACOBSON.

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

NICE TO SEE YOU.

HOW ARE YOU?

PLEASE SIT.

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

NICE TO SEE YOU.

>> THANK YOU.

THANKS FOR HAVING US.

>> Jon: I'M GOING TO SAY THIS RIGHT OFF THE BAT, YOU'VE DONE AN INCREDIBLY DONE FILM.

I WANT THIS SEEN IN THE BROADEST WAY POSSIBLE.

WHO IS GOING TO SEE THIS?

WHAT IS GOING HAPPEN?

>> ON MARCH 1 IT'S GOING TO BE RELEASED IN THEATERS ACROSS THE COUNTRY, ONDEMAND AND ON

ITUNES AND ACCOMPANIED BY A HUGE SOCIAL ACTION CAMPAIGN THAT WILL LIVE IN THE ATMOSPHERE.

>> Jon: ABOUT ENDING THIS HUNGER PROBLEM IN THE UNITED STATES.

>> PEOPLE NEED TO KNOW THIS IS REALLY SOLVABLE.

THIS IS ONE OF THOSE ISSUES OUR TIME WE CAN FIX WELL.

HE KNOW HOW.

WE KNOW WHAT CAUSES HUNGER.

WE NOW TO FIX IT.

WE WANT PEOPLE TO SEE THE FILM AND ENGAGE AND SET UP MANY YEARS IN THE MAKING CAMPAIGN.

IT'S GOING TO GIVE PEOPLE TOOLS THEY CAN ENGAGE.

WE CAN FIX THIS ONE.

IT'S SOMETHING WE CAN GET RIGHT.

>> Jon: 15 MILLION PEOPLE IN AMERICA.

ONE IN SIX.

>> AND 17 MILLION KIDS.

>> Jon: CRAZY.

ONE OUT OF EVERY TWO CHILDREN HAS AT SOME POINT IN THEIR LIVES WILL HAVE SOME FORM OF HUNGER

INSECURITY WHERE THEY DON'T KNOW WHERE THEIR NEXT MEAL IS.

>> AND THEIR PARENTS ARE SPENDING TIME AND ENERGY AND RESOURCES SCROUNGING FOR FOOD

INSTEAD OF WORKING, LOOKING FOR WORK, CONTRIBUTING TO CHURCHES OR SYNAGOGUES.

YOU HAVE TO ASK WHAT IT SAYS ABOUT US AS A NATION THAT WE ARE CONTENT TO LET 50 MILLION SPEND

THEIR DAY DOING THAT.

>> Jon: THIS IS INTERESTING TO SEE.

I THINK THERE'S A SENSE IN THE COUNTRY THAT THERE'S A MOOCHER CLASS LIVING THE LIFE OF RILEY,

KICKING THEIR HEELS BACK, DINING ON THE HAM AND MASHED POTATOES EVERY NIGHT ON THE TAXPAYER DOLE.

THESE ARE WORKING PEOPLE.

80% ARE WORKING, YES?

>> 80% OF PEOPLE ON FOOD STAMPS ARE WORKING FAMILIES.

>> Jon: THERE'S A MULTITUDE OF PROBLEMS.

ONE PROBLEM IS NOT THAT WE DON'T HAVE ENOUGH FOOD.

>> IT'S DEFINITELY NOT.

WE HAVE ENOUGH CALORIES TO FEED ENOUGH PEOPLE DOUBLE WHAT THINK NEED TO LIVE WELL.

IS SCARCEITY IS NOT THE ISSUE AT ALL.

>> Jon: SCARCEITY IT'S NOT THE ISSUE BUT FINANCIALLY IT'S EASIER AND CHEAPER TO BUY CRAPPY

FOOD THAN DECENT FOOD.

>> YES, YOU TALKED BEFORE ABOUT THE MOOCHER MENTALITY.

WE FILMED PEOPLE STRUGGLING EVERY DAY TO TRYING TO PUT HEALTHY FOOD ON THEIR TABLE.

MANY PEOPLE DON'T HAVE ACCESS TOLL HEALTHY FOOD LET ALONE ARE THEY ABLE TO AFFORD IT.

>> Jon: THIS WAS A PROBLEM THAT AMERICANS KISS COVERED.

I'M SURE IT'S BEEN HERE WITHIN THE COUNTRY IN THE 170'S.

>> -- 1970'S.

>> IT'S A BIG INSPIRATION TO US.

IN 1968 CBS DID A SHOW ON HUNGER IN AMERICA.

WHEN PEOPLE SAW THIS, THEY REALLY FOUND IT UNACCEPTABLE, PICKED UP THE PHONE AND CALLED

THE LEGISLATORS AND WITHIN TWO WEEKS CONGRESS CREATED BIPARTISAN LEGISLATION THAT

CREATED THE MODERN FOOD SAFETY.

IT ENDED HUNGER BY THE 1970'S.

ENDED IT.

THEY RADICALLY MODERNIZED IT.

>> THEY WENT BACK TO THE AREAS THEY STUDIED AND REPORTED ON TEN YEARS LATER AND FOUND THAT THE

HUNGER HAD BEEN -- WAS GONE.

>> Jon: NOW THAT WE FOUND THE SOLUTION TO THE HUNGER PROBLEM, WHAT CAN WE DO AS A GOVERNMENT,

AS A NATION AT THAT POINT?

>> IN A WORD: REAGAN.

HE FLIPPED A SWITCH.

HE TALKED ABOUT HOW -- INSTEAD OF SEEING HOW IT WAS IN OUR COLLECTIVE BEST INTEREST TO FEED EVERYBODY.

WE TALKED ABOUT PEOPLE TRYING TO GET A FREE RIDE.

>> THEY CUT THE FUNDING AND AS A RESULT IT SHIFTED THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR DEALING WITH

THE HUNGRY IN THIS COUNTRY TO CHARITIES, FAITH-BASED GROUPS AND THOSE KINDS OF THINGS.

>> Jon: THE THEORY IS ALWAYS HEY, MAN, GOVERNMENT IS GOING TO SCREW THINGS UP.

CHARITIES ARE GOING TO DO IT.

SO WE WENT FROM HAVING 2000 FOOD BANKS TO -- 40,000 WAS IT?

>> 40,000.

>> Jon: HOW MANY NOW?

>> 40,000 BUT IT'S TOO BIG FOR THOSE GROUPS TO HANDLE.

THEY HAVE TOLD US.

ALL OF THE TIME THAT THE NEED IS TOO GREAT AND WE NEED REAL GOVERNMENT ACTION ON THIS ISSUE.

>> Jon: THESE GROUPS ARE DOING.

YOU ARE WATCHING THE WORK THEY ARE DOING.

IT'S INCREDIBLE THAT THE CHARITIES ARE DOING ARE PUTTING INTO THIS.

THE GUY, LOVELY GUY PASTER BOB.

I WENT THE FIRST TIME AND I GOT TWO BAGS OF GROSS RIZ NOW IT'S DRIVING TRACTORS BACK AND FORTH

TWICE A DAY TRYING TO KEEP UP WITH THE NEED.

>> IN HIS VERY SMALL TOWN OF WORKING FAMILIES.

IF CHARITY COULD HAVE FIXED IT IT WOULD HAVE BECAUSE WE'VE NEVER HAD A CHARITY RESPONSE

FROM THE GOOD PEOPLE OF THIS NATION LIKE WE DO RIGHT NOW.

>> Jon: THERE'S A SEEN WHEN YOU GO DOWN TO CONGRESS TO DO A HEARING AND BOY IF A CONGRESS

HAD A LOW APPROVAL RATING BEFORE THAT, THE DISCONNECT -- EVEN ON AN EMOTIONAL LEVEL, THE

CONGRESSIONAL RESPONSE YOU GOT WAS SHOCKING.

>> IT WAS DISHEARTENING TO SAY THE LEAST.

>> Jon: THAT'S A KIND WAY TO DESCRIBE IT.

>> YEAH, TO WITNESS THAT BUT AT THE SAME TIME WE ALSO PAST TOURED THE WITNESSES TO HUNGER,

THESE INCREDIBLE WOMEN FROM NORTH PHILLY WHO TRAVELED TO HAVE THEIR VOICED BE HEARD.

THERE WERE INSPIRING THINGS TAKING PLACE IN THAT PLACE CALLED D.C. ALSO.

>> Jon: THE WOMEN WERE GREAT BUT EVEN IN THAT, ONE WOMAN, WONDERFUL WOMAN WHO ENDS UP

GETTING A JOB WAY HUNGER GROUP.

BY GETTING THAT JOB WHICH DOES NOT PAY HER TREMENDOUS AMOUNT SHE'S DISQUALIFIED FOR

ASSISTANCE AND FINDS HERSELF IN A SITUATION WHERE SHE'S STRUGGLING.

>> IT'S SHOCK.

AT THE END OF THE DAY WE CAN BE MAD AT OUR GOVERNMENT BUT WE'VE BEEN TALKING TO LEGISLATORS

ABOUT THIS.

THEY SAY THE PHONES AREN'T RINGING.

WE'RE NOT GETTING TISMS OR TWEETS ON THIS AND WE'LL CHANGE HOW WE VOTE.

WE HEARD THAT OVER AND OVER AGAIN.

I BUY IT.

SOMEONE TOLD US IF HE GOT SIX PHONE CALLS ON THE ISSUE BECAUSE HE ASSUMES A COUPLE,000 PEOPLE

ARE NOT CALLING.

GET INVOLVED.

WE MAKE IT EASY FOR THEM TO DO THAT.

>> Jon: POOR PEOPLE NEED A BETTER LOBBY I THINK.

THIS IS GOING TO BE IN THEY'RE ADVERTISE, ONDEMAND, iTUNES ON MARCH 1.

YOU'VE DONE A TREMENDOUS JOB.

JUST A BEAUTIFUL JOB.

ALL AROUND LORI SILVERBUSH, KRISTI JACOBSON WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK.

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

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