It's no secret that Cinematical loves Dear Zachary, A Letter to a Son About His Father. Kurt Kuenne's documentary is excellent, evocative, heart-wrenching, and wickedly inspiring. But as any of you who have seen the film know, it's about a lot more than a simple letter. There's a legacy that follows this film, which is now picking up steam.
In case some of you haven't caught the film yet, I'll continue the post after the jump, as the main thrust and twists in the doc will be discussed.
As fans of the film know, it all came to be because of flimsy bail laws, and Kuenne has done what he could not only to get the message out with the film, but to send it to Canadian lawmakers to instigate change and hopefully prevent further loss of life. It's been a slow road, but in his own words:
On December 4, 2009, Bill C-464 (our bail bill, created by MP Scott Andrews of Newfoundland) was discussed for a full hour on the floor of the House of Commons in Ottawa, and received unanimous support from all political parties to advance to the Standing Committee on Justice & Human Rights, the next necessary step. Kate & David Bagby will now be called as witnesses before the committee, the bill will be revised & strengthened, then brought back to the House and Senate for a vote. They had allotted two hours for discussing the bill but did not need them, since the bill received unanimous support from all parties after one hour, which I'm told is extremely rare. The bill when enacted would justify detention in custody for someone accused of a serious crime who is potential danger to their own minor children.
It was quite satisfying to watch the live feed from the floor of the House of Commons on December 4th, and hear the House discuss Andrew & Zachary by name for an hour, after this case has been ignored for so long.
This is huge, and while nothing is set in stone, there's nothing more inspiring or comforting than the fact that this documentary and story moved the entire House of Commons to a unanimous agreement. Just think about how rare this is. Canada might not be the U.S., but there are still political parties, diverging agendas, wildly different political and social beliefs.
Trying to inspire change often seems futile, but it's refreshing to know that sometimes it can be successful. Let's hope the bill becomes a reality soon.