Heidi Schreck told Stephen Colbert that the Ninth Amendment is her favorite right because it frees up the government to acknowledge rights that aren’t explicitly stated in the Constitution.
Real quick, here’s what the Ninth Amendment says, “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”
Schreck said that her mother, who’s a debate coach, got her interested in the Constitution after she packed Schreck up and drove her throughout the country to give paid speeches about the Constitution to American Legion halls.
The whole gig turned out to be, as Larry David would say, “pretty, pretty, pretty good.”
Schreck got the money she needed to pay for college as well as the knowledge needed to write her play, What the Constitution Means to Me; which is also placing plenty of Benjamins into her bank account.
The play is based on the women in Schreck’s family who, like all women, didn’t receive the same protections under the Constitution that were afforded to men.
“The Ninth Amendment is what they had to use when they started
making laws about our bodies. Like a little escape patch…Don’t
assume that because it’s not in the Constitution that you don’t
have a right. When they made the constitution they were just
like, 'We don’t know what this is?'" Schreck
"That’s a very good impression of a man,"
Colbert said to Schreck.
Schreck told Colbert that the women in her family suffered from domestic abuse and sexual abuse and didn’t have the support, which women have today, from the legal system.
Schreck said that due to the violence the women in her family had to go through, it was quite difficult for her to perform the play.
The first time Schreck performed the play, she ran off stage after she got to the scene dealing with the domestic and sexual abuse in her family.
Her husband, the artistic director, and the director all ran to the back of the stage.
Schreck’s husband stood there, for a moment, looked at her, and said, “You know I’m sitting behind this row of young women and they’re very into the play and they clearly want and need to hear what you’re talking about.”
Schreck looked up at her husband and said, “And I was like, ‘Yeah, no, that’s ok.’”
Seeing that his wife was distraught and needed something other than
a shot of Valium to keep her up on her feet, Schreck’s husband gave his wife
a shot of Tequila.
With the help of a shot of Tequila from time to time, Schreck has been able to perform the play without any interruptions.
What the Constitution Means to Me is showing off Broadway at the Helen Hayes Theater.