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tv   America Tonight  Al Jazeera  November 28, 2013 9:00pm-10:01pm EST

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water to disburse crowds. over 21 women and girled sentenced up to 11 years in prison. afghanistan's president say as young child was killed and two women wounded in an air strike today. the president blames america, and says if the attack continues it gives them more reasons to not sign a security agreement with the u.s. we have been keeping a close eye on comment isot which flamed out around the trip around the sun. the comment which was first spotted last year
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broken heart. this is ison's end. black friday is creeping into thanksgiving. k mart opened at six this morning and many major retailers are opening tonight. well ahead of traditional midnight start up shopping. it's not happening everywhere, though. laws in maine maine, massachusets, and rhode island ban stores from opening on thanksgiving. those are the headlines america tonight is next, and for all of us here on al jazeera america new york, we want to wish you a happy thank giving and happy hanukkah. enjoy the holiday weekend.
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hello, and welcome to this special holiday edition of "america tonight." since thanksgiving brings to mind the origins of this country. to begin, we look to the star spangled banner, america's most famous flag is safely tucked away at the smithsonian museum here in washington. be 200 years ago it was first raised over and our determination as a young nation to succeed. ♪ o say can you see by the dawn's early light ♪. >> it's a song as familiar to americans as
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a babies lull by. how did it become such a part of the fabric of america? >> the anthem gets the flag more publicity, and the flag makes the anthem more famous. >> so we are standing on a reconstruction of the gun impact that was here. >> this is the power of place, here is the thing, people love the anthem, they love the grab, what they need to understand is that fort mchenry where they both come together. and literally, on the exact original ground in which you andry now standing. >> is so called spar spangled banner flag is turning 200 years old. to celebrate the anniversary, the maryland historical society has
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researched the original flag, and is recreating it as accurately as possible, right dune to the very last stitch. >> one of the major sources was the conservation report from the smithsonian. reading what it looks like, and then actually being able to take it to a weaver and say you know can you do this. i didn't necessarily want to do it if i couldn't fly it. i wanted to fly it. i think that's important for something like this. >> and the way we went. a team of devoted stitchers assembled and took the work. from all across the world want to distribute a stitch. there was a natural divvying up of the duty whose worked on the stripes and who sowed the two-foot wide stars. >> well, the stripes are pieced together and sews in long strips. the stars are an my kayed
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on top. one is piecing things together and the other one is putting one piece on top of another and sewing it down. >> well, she is stars and i'm striped. >> that was our nickname, because she was responsible for stars, i was responsible for stripes. >> get your hand underneath, and you want to be about a quarter inch from where the thread has come through the fabric. you go down and touch your finger underneath, using your thumb and your finger, you bend the fabric in half, and it pops back up. and you are going to let me put a stitch in this. >> absolutely. >> we just go straight down, now you put it all the way through. >> uh h o. i made a mistake. >> okay, that's what happens. >> i'm ruining the star spangled banner. >> here we go. >> 200 years ago, baltimore was a boom town in a new nation. but the british had not given up the idea of getting their former
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colonies back in line. angered by british trade restrictions and the oppressment of sailors mischaracterize declared war in what is known of the war of 1812. >> so this is what they were shoo t l shooting? >> yeah, that's an 18-pound ball, as you can see it does not explode, so historically they didn't even call them cannon balls. >> what did they call them? >> 1409. >> the battle of baltimore would become a defining moment, and inspire a national anthem. >> but the beginning of the war wasn't clear sailing. >> to have a symbol of the country, very visible to the british who are in the he is pea bay, all of 1813 is really important, basically just to say we are here. we aren't going anywhere. it has a lot of gravities. >> the commander wanted to raise a garrison flag,
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30 feet by 42 feet, large enough to be clearly visible to the armada of british ships anchors in the river. commissions local flag maker she was paid $405.90. that's a lot of money, today it would be almost $6,000. >> she is not making a flag that she thinks is going to last 200 years and be in the smithsonian, she is making a flag for a fort. how many times has she done this before. she expects this to last two or three years and then make a new one. >> she didn't have the luxury of working in a big auditorium, instead she worked just outside downtown baltimore. five other family members and an a servant works for six weeks straight, piecing together the flag, sometimes working by candlelight, so they could meet their deadline. >> the fabric is something that i don't think anybody here had ever handled before. sometimes i have thought
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that mary would say something like, i know six-year-olds that sew better than this. >> the material called bunting used to make today's flag, costs about $12,000. add in labor costs for the almost 2,000 people who have worked on it over the last six months and you have a price tag in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. talk about inflation. but there could have been even more work if the state count had been accurate. >> 15 stars and 15 stripes. so at this point in time, when there's a new state added each new state get as new star and a new stripe. >> a piece of trivia, however, is that in 1812, there are actually 18 states in the union, not 15, they just hadn't gotten around to putting the new stars the stripes on the flag. they don't change the flag until 1818, this' 21 at that time. >> then what does it go to? >> at that point, they take it back to 13, for
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the 13 original states, and then they continue to add stars for each new state. this is the only flag in our history that has more than think teen stripes. >> sailing on a scooper at dawn between baltimore and fort mchenry brings the past within arm's reach two, hundred years ago next year will mark another important anniversary, the star spangled banner was written. in ode to the garrison flag, and to the possibility of a wartime victory in the face of the british bombardment on fort mchenry. >> ironically, here is september 11th is when the british were spotted. >> when you look out, that must have been ex-freely intimidated to see all of these ships coming. >> there were three times as many ships as in the united states navy. it was literally almost like the shock in all of 19th century. >> francis scott key had gone out to a ship in the river, he was negotiating
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a prison release from the british fleet when the battle began. he was four miles away from fort mchenry, today, that spot is marked with a buoy, what many don't know is that francis scott key could not see the outcome of the battle. >> it is muddy. it is rink, the americans are feeling helpless. you have the smoke from all the guns, he is asking a question, saying can you see. he cannot see the flag, can you see the flag by dawn's early light. and then he reflect sods proudly we haimed at twilight's last gleaming. >> so out on the water where we see the key bridge, he protoa home. setting the words to the tune of a favorite song. >> he had a real thing for british drinking song called aknack owian in heaven. >> he was really into a drinking song. >> yes. he really liked the tune
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allot, and i think he composed other poetry to fit it, but he definitely had this in mind. >> do you know the song? >> yes, i do. >> will you sing it for me. >> i will try. >> okay. >> to an nook owian in heaven, fort glee, the true sons of harmony sent a petition. >> o say can you see by the dawn's early light what so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming whose broad stripes -- over the ram apartments we watched were so gallantly streaming. >> do you see the american flag differently now than you did before you started working on the project? >> yeah. this is -- this is just so personal. this is my flag. this is our flag. this flag is going to fly soon, and people are going to go that's our flag.
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it is just very emotional. >> it was the first true similar bomb we had. we didn't have national architecture. we couldn't say we invented the english language, what do you have, you have this flag, this red, white, and blue, that represents what the country stands for. >> a flag, flying in the face of an enemy, a symbol with simple beginnings whose power has lasted for 200 years. or the land of the free and the home of the brave. >> indeed, adam may reporting. coming up next, an unfinished family project, in fulfilling the vision of crazy horse, when will the monument stand hold. blame blame
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they may consider it offensive. they may consider it offensive. and in that case they just and in that case they just recommend that you block that recommend that you block that person. person. >> i don't want to minimise >> i don't want to minimise this, because i mean, there's this, because i mean, there's some really horrible things that some really horrible things that are on are on line, and it's not - it's line, and it's not - it's not just twitter, what has not just twitter, what has
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happened through social media happened through social media and the anonymity of the net is and the anonymity of the net is that you see websites, that you see websites, hate-filled websites hate-filled websites targetting targetting all sorts of groups, popping up. all sorts of groups, popping up. there has been a huge number of there has been a huge number of those that exist as well. those that exist as well. from east to west, many impressive monuments tell the history of our country. an incomplete rock structure of cheap crazy horse, fiers warrior of the sioux tribe. if you have visit grounds today, you can see his face and a lofty project.
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the family left feverishly carving away toward its completion. its features chiseled from the family side. from the sioux tribe known as crazy horse. >> his arm holing a giant stallion that you can imagine but cannot see. the horse's head all 219 feet of it has been painted but still must be fashioned from the jagged rock. call it a work in progress. carried on by the family of a man who started carving this mountain by himself in 1948. >> -determined that it was going to be completed no question about it. and i don't think he realized when he started how long it was going to take, or how much work it was going to be. >> so he underestimated the task? >> he did.
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now 87-year-old, she came to south dakota with star dust in her eyes. she came to work with a famous sculptor from her state, the man she would later mary because he would not take another man off from carving. >> once he started it he wasn't going to quit. that just wasn't in his way. he honestly believe, you can do anything in the world you want to do, absolutely nothing is impossible. response you are willing to work hard enough and stay with it. >> he had been a sculptor on mount rush moore only 17 miles away. they want add monument of their own to rival rushmore. so they asked him to carving a likeness of crazy horse. >> why has it taken so
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long? >> because it's so big. because it started with absolutely nothing, and we have had to make every bit of it ourselves. >> her husband spent 35 years blasting and chipping away at the mountain side. he died in 1982 at the age of 74, when the carving had barely begun to take shape. >> when your husband died, did he think that his dream was going to die with him? >> no. i don't think he did. he had made the statement when his mountain stopped when he died his whole life would have been wasted. >> so ruth and their ten children decided to forge ahead, six still work on the mountain. the caughtser the fourth older. >> he wantedtous have a commitment. >> was he obsessed with this project. yes. did he teach us to be? yes. he said to us if you lay
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it down, if you lay down the feeling then you have to find something else to do. >> her younger sister wears the hard hat, supervisorring the actual carving of the mountain, she learned how to scale the sculpture. she takes us to a ridge 36 story below the face and arm, the first tv cameras ever allowed here. with a scale model monique gives us a progress report. >> give us the sense owhere we are. >> we are below the horse's nose, and we still have to go in about 70 feet to get to the horse's nostril. so the rock we are standing on now will all be gone. >> the rock, several million tons of it has already been dynamited away, ever so carefully to protect the mountain, and preserve the sculpture. >> how excruciating is this work? >> it's not excruciating.
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it is big. it's a challenge, for many reasons. but it is a labor of love. >> in her batters blue pickup, she takes us to the top of the mountain, here the face was finally finished 16 years after her father's death. >> a lot of people say it was too bad he wasn't here to see the face carve, but he has already seen the whole mountain carves. >> she says her father kept a vision of the entire sculpture in his head. visitors can now see what he imagined at the foot of the mountain, is a scale model showing crazy horse gripping his stallion, his long hair flowing back into the rock. his memorial is taller than the washington monument, and nearly twice the height of mount rushmore. a 6'" tall man would fit easily into his eyes, eyes that see everything on the mountain,
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according to family legend. >> there's something about walking around out there on crazy horse's arm. you turn around and look back, and he is looking at you. and it's really kind of an eerie feeling. no matter where you walk on that mountain, where you stand, he is watching you. >> no more than once or twice a year, the public is allow add closer look. this fall nearly fow thundershower made the hike up and back, looking like a colony of ants on the move from the bottom of the mountain. climbing at a hard breathing altitude of more than 6,000 feet to reach the top of crazy horse's arm, just under that imposing face. >> it has taken so long to finish only part of the project does not seem to tear visitors. including these three that made the trek together. >> i admire that, but if
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they are going to do it their way it won't get done quickly. >> is fact they are continuing to move forward is very impressive. >> i am awed by this type of art form. just the engineering it takes. to create using a massive form of arc. >> the old joke is that the only thing crazy about the crazy horse memorial, is the sculptor who started it, and other the years his family has come under chriss similar from some native americans who complain this is more about an sen tentic artist. a member of the la coat that sioux tribe is founder and publisher of the native sun news. i wrote an editorial, who is it presented to. >> i can't please everybody, i would rather please the indian people
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than anybody else, because it is their memorial. >> they are adamant that it is not about them, down the road, is another piece of his legacy, the indian university of north america. built by the nonprofit that helps finance the sculpture. >> in the four years we have been doing this, we have created educational opportunities for 24 different tribes, and 17 different states. jason murray sees the culture as a sign of respect. >> this project, at its very heart is reconciliation. i see that, i feel that, if i didn't i would point part of this. >> over the year ms. of the local sioux came to change their minds about the carving on the mountain. and the family that carries it on. >> they watch and they saw the mountain finally taking some kind of shape, and they saw
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people who were doing the ask call work up there as good people. and i think it -- it helped to bring about a lot of changes. >> but here change comes slowly. very slowly. he once boasted he would finish in 30 years. >> he wish he made that statement, that's why i don't tell anybody when lit be done. >> now the project is entering it's 66th year, even the adult children who are toiling away won't predict when it will be finished. >> i think it will look really good by the time i'm an old lady, but i won't be done, i don't think in my lifetime. >> i hope my children will be able to see it pretty much completed, but it's quite a ways down the road. >> you guys are doing the locks? >> yeah. that way is closer to the beginning. >> in fact, a third generation of family members is already
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working at their grandfather's mountain, 28-year-old heidi parks cars for the hikers. >> her grant mother is still in challenge, still working every day from the dining room where her family has managed the project since 1948. but ruth has no illusions about seeing crazy horse completed in her lifetime. so she tries to envision the finished sculpture the way her husband did. >> he saw the mountain completed. and i don't have that ability. but he could see it all done in his mind's eye. and he just described it as heroic. and being meaningful. >> for the family when the mountain will be finished has become less meaningful than why. and here in the black
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hills the outline of that figure on his horse, just the way he saw it in his mind's eye, become as bit clearer every day. >> correspondent reporting. >> coming up next, art self-taught, the raw talent one cure cure ray tor has found in the back roads of the deep south, up next. power power of the people until we restore of the people until we restore oue television.
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we depend on you, we depend on you, >> you are one of the voices of >> you are one of the voices of
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this show. this show. >> so join the conversation and >> so join the conversation and make it your own. make it your own. >> the stream. >> the stream. weeknights 7:30 et / 4:30 pt weeknights 7:30 et / 4:30 pt on al jazeera america on al jazeera america and join the conversation and join the conversation online @ajamstream. online @ajamstream. artist needs is a chance, for bill arnett those from a composition of his career. as you will see here, he is an artist himself, but he know as powerful piece when he sees one. >> this looked like a bunch of material that had been blown around in a storm. or a tornado. >> lonnie holly turns debris into art. >> show me the moon and the stars ♪. >> art that's been shown in major museums around the country. >> as y'all saw me going through all of this stuff, to expose it, i
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was like an inspector. and in a sense, i were acting like an archaeology. but just as he finds art, others may overlook. >> you will probably see it in the future. >> an unusual kind of cure ray tor found him. >> this room is the box of lonnie holly. meet bill arnett, a curator with a cause. >> if he had been let's just say white living in new york, he would be a celebrity long ago. in my opinion. and he will be anyway, but sometimes it takes longer. >> the art may'm involved with is about that compares favorably with any art that's been produced anywhere on earth in the past 100 years. so i wouldn't be involved with it otherwise. i am not fascinated by
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primitive, or naive, or folkky things. i am interested in the great art of the word, and i spent my life exploring it. he then cure rating exhibitions, and consulting around the world. >> i came to realize here we had something in the south that was equal to all of that, i realized there was something here i didn't know about, and neither did anybody else, and it was just lurking out there. >> in the 1970's, arnett began to travel the back roads and discovered art nobody knew about. >> and i discovered here in the south, we had this black cultural, which had been making art since probably the first slaves got off the boat. and black people weren't allowed to have written languages and to create things publicly, the way
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other civilizations do. so they made these things in secretsy, and defense passed along verbally. >> one of the first artists arnett met was lonnie holly. who then introduced him to thornton dial, an artist who would become world renowned. >> dial was terribly reluctant to talk to me. or to talk about his art, because he came from a generation which had been taught don't let white people know what you are thinking. just stay out of sight. dial finally pull add piece out, and it was the most remarkable piece of art. i asked did he have any other things. very very rarely. >> i really -- if god came down and gave me a choice of who to have in the museum, i would have kept that. and i'd have made a list,
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and william louie dreyfuss is a prominent collector with his own mow seem. >> i think this will be a very important painting. by it should be. >> after he discovered dial, he bout more than 125 of his works. >> before white folks in the world, -- he has an understanding of what black america is about. i have a lot of admiration for him. >> bill arnett went on to does cover dozens of other artists. >> this is an artist from memphis, died a few years ago, his flame was joe light. this is a woman named mary tillman smith, who lives in hazlehurst, mississippi. >> artist who the art establishment has failed to notice. earn though they were hiding in plain sight. >> the next artist we
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come to here. he began painting in an alley in a ghetto in miami. >> and bill with his son matt, found artists hidden in an isolated pocket of rural america. a name the arnetts would make famous. every day that we intent in the early days it was a sense of discovery, daily. >> we would meet a new quilt maker that would show us work that had been made 20, 30, 50 years ago, and here it was. seeing the light for the first time. >> so we started going on a regular basis and word got around, and some crazy white people paying crazy prices for some of your old stuff. >> everything about it was life changing. >> the quilts were made from old work clothes
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that had become too worn to wear. >> some of the most beautiful things i had ever seen in my life, and i can imagine if some art lover had lived in paris, and just say he had come upon picasso, or because tis, or barack or any of these guys and recognized wow, the history of art is about to change. and i am here to look at it and 1245's the way i felt. that's exciting. so i took it to people, i didn't want to make money from it. i didn't want to control it, i wanted to just disseminate it. i wanted the information to get out. >> arnett introduced artists to art collectors. dealers and gallery owners. he has allowed my work to be on exhibit in atlanta, in some of the greater
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institutions like the united nations, my work is in the smithsonian. he also introduced porch dial to the arth world. >> i think the work is incredible. >> recognizing dial for the extraordinary contribution. >> arnett had his critics those who accuse the white art connoisseur of ripping off uneducated artists. >> accusations that i was taking black artists and profiting from them, is more painful than i would like to try to explain. it got real bad. my dad is one of the most upbeat people, and he went through many years where i think it was hard for him to get out of bed. >> lonnie holly made
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clear what think thought. >> he did not take advantage of myself, or as far as i'm concerned no other artist, because to me, he was coming in our lives, he was giving us more for our would recollects of art than we really really had ever received before. he was giving us time to actually develop and also hi was taking the time to take the work to the next level. for us. >> but the rumors scared off the galleries and museums which were about to feature the work afternoon nest has discovered. >> the next thing you know, dial can't have a show anywhere. everything gets canceled. >> it tooks years but eventually, the accusations and the controversy faded, and the art spoke for itself. >> i didn't quit, i think that's my best talent, is my unwillingness to give up. >> and bill arnett has
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not given up. the work he has championed is finally getting its due. articles, museum exhibits, even postage stamps. i found some chop sticks. >> lonnie holly finally got a new york show. >> i am trying to make a joyful noise. >> bill arnett is 74 now, and stepping back a bit from his life's work, but his son matt has picked up the baton still looking out for the artist they discovered still bringing their art to the world. >> i feel good about this right here. >> comings up next, catching an american dinner favorite. the low down on lobster, what's the net worth these days. back in a moment.
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consider this: the news of the consider this: the news of the day plus so much more. day plus so much more. >> we begin with the government >> we begin with the government shutdown. shutdown. >> answers to the questions no >> answers to the questions no one else will ask. one else will ask. >> it seems like they can't >> it seems like they can't agree to anything in washington agree to anything in washington no matter what. no matter what. >> antonio mora, award winning >> antonio mora, award winning and hard hitting. and hard hitting. >> we've heard you talk about >> we've heard you talk about the history of suicide in your the history of suicide in your family. family. >> there's no status quo, just >> there's no status quo, just the bottom line. the bottom line. >> but, what about buying shares >> but, what about buying shares
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in a professional athlete? in a professional athlete? days off the shores ofugh main. having an embarrassment of riches. they have overflowing harvest, the catch is so heavy, they are almost sinking the lobster industry. america tonight spends the day on the atlantic, to explore why too much of a good thing may be hurting their livelihood. >> dawn is just breaking on a crisp morning. while most of the country is sleeping, steve train is leaving the shore. the sea has been the
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source of steve's livelihood for 25 years. you guys about ready? >> he is a lobsterman. one of 5,000 lobsterman that are the backbone of mains coastal economy. but now, steve's way of life is threatened. jolted because the ecology and the economy of main are suddenly going in different directions. >> have to be three and a quarter inch from the eye to the back of the shelf. these are too small. >> the lobster harvest is at a record high. >> those are good ones. >> those are good. >> but prices near an all time low. >> it is just like anything else, supply and demand. we have ago supply, and we don't have the demand to match it.
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>> we return probably ten times as much as we can. >> good conservation techniques with warmer waters from climate change have led to an explosion in the lobster catch. >> how many? do we have a count? >> so many lobsters prices. falling from $6 a pound wholesale in 20005, to about $3 a pound today. >> economically, as would happen in any industry. i don't know what jobs we have if we aren't fishing. are you spending nit that community? >> pat is working on solutions. as the commissioner of the main department of marine resources, he developed and promotes the fishing industry. >> less than eight years we have doubled the volume. >> that's a lot of lobster. >> 126 pounds in main
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alone. you look at canada, and we have a pure supply and demand issue. when you put that much volume out both domestic and international, you have to be able to keep pace. and right now the pace of volume is winning over demand. >> to cover the faces they need to haul about 300 of these. now about three years ago when gas was cheeper he only needed to get half as many. >> that's before anybody on this boat has pay add dime. that's if nothing breaks. that's just operating pop is we like to cover that, with any luck we can do better than that. you take what you get. it is fishing. we just like to go out and not lose money. i used to go out and just make money, i have kind of changed my attitude, it is nice to go out and not lose money. >> you want to treat these like eggs. >> right now when you are a fisherman, and you are facing what the cost of
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doing business when you have all time high, fume prices at an all time high. mortgage payments, kids going off to college, and 5u8 the expenses they would have in life, they struggle, and they are looking at finding ways to be more profitable. main is launching a new 2 1/2 million dollars marketing campaign. and new processing facilities like this, may also help save the industry. you have been doing this for a long time, are you still in awe when you walk in and see this? >> we have a great team. the folks behind us, they are tremendously skilled. >> luke holden is the founder of restaurant chain looks monsters. they are all screwing it
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up. >> he was inspire bid the shacks he grew up around. >> so luke opened up his first restaurant aimed at serving a simple sweet roll. >> tags forward we have seven in manhattan, three in d.c., and you are here today at cape seafood, which is our lacest. >> this facility has processed 45,000 pounds of lobster, all of the meat here ends up at lukes lobster. >> do you see a day where lobster becomes a bigger part of the american diet? are we on that path? >> we are getting better at processing the lobster. finding new ways to ship it p i don't think it will become like a burger, but is there an opportunity for it to become more accessible on the west coast, internationally, i think so. >> with the ant we harvest now, we need
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people like that are selling that product that have people look at lobster in a different way. it isn't the big cooked reticent plate item. there's lobster meat available cue to all the processing we have. >> all of the challenges are not stopping a new generation justin is a recent university physics graduate. now a full time lobsterman. >> how does a guy with a physics degree decides this is what he wants to do? what do your parents say about that? >> i'm not sure how they feel about it, but you look out and this is your offense. so -- a little bit better nan a cubicle. i like that it is always an adventure, never doing the same thing over and over again. you go out and you can make $2,000 or you can lose $300.
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kind of exciting. >> yeah, you know math, you are a physics guy. >> a little bit of math, yeah. >> these are really tough times for the lobsterman when we started -- 55-gallon drums it was $40. now it is 190. fuel was $1.80, and now it is $4.02. >> what does all that math tell you. >> fluctuating a lot. and catch a lot more lobster in order to make money. >> is it interesting to you that a young guy like justin who is 22, that has a four year degree in physics wants to become a lobsterman? >> i think a lot of us were there whether it was 16 or 19, or 22. >> you were there at 1 point. >> we were all there at 1 point. and people say why do you want to do that, why do you want to put up with
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that. it is a way of life. the sun was coming up, you don't want to give that up. you get hooked on it, and there's bad days and good days and every one of those good days you will put up with two or three bad days to get another one. i have been doing this for 25 plus years and i still take a camera out to take a picture of the sun rise. >> 25 years at sea and each day ends the same. stephen and his crew take stock of the catch, and they hope for the best. their goal was 300 to break even. >> no, not a lot. >> not a lot. >> how did it go? >> we have had a lot better days than that. if we make money it is a good day. >> it is a good day. a good day indeed. ahead in our final
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segment, we visit america's great plains. the great beasts return so the black hills. where the bison got back.
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final tonight, we marvel at a creature native to the great plains. and then hunted almost to extinction. the black hills to explain how the biasson and its defined its way home. >> in the black hills of south dakota these cowboys and girls are preparing for work the way they did a century ago. >> we ask there's no harm that comes to man or beast. >> but the dawn light reveals a thoroughly modern caravan winding through the valley. >> good morning. >> here at custard state park, the crowds are coming. braving a damp wind, to
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experience the spectacle most americans have only seen in the movies. >> this is probably as close to the old west as you are going to get. even though its species was slaughtered nearly to extinction. a wild herd of more than 1200 plains, big, and tough, weighing as much as 2,000 pounds. >> their lineage stretched back tens of thousands of years before history was ever written. >> on this morning more than 14,000 visitors from all over the world come to watch. they arrived with their three children, they are on a year long trip around the country, part of their home schooling. >> i just love this opportunity to bring our kids out here, and to
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just experience the natural history, to see the things we have read about. >> for the three children, the buffalo become more than a dusty speck of a history lesson. >> i would have liked to have seen them roam by the millions, i think that would have been amazing, but just being able to see them at all is cool. >> and for mary ann, proud of her la coat that sioux heritage, the all night drive was worth it. >> almost watch me cry when they run past, because there's something about it that pulls at you. pulls at my heart. >> and soon, over a ridge top the first buffalo break the horizon, barely visible at first, but then the whips crack, and the cowboys holler the way they always have. >> oh, get up there. >> and the vast empty
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plains come to life. the ground itself shaking from the thundering hooves. >> a sound so ominous it terrifies a herd of wild elk. >> look at the helding, and sends them scattering for safety. >> if the scene seems somehow familiar, no wonder, it was right here in this valley with the ancestors of these very buffalo, where a star studded cast filmed the hollywood classic how the quest was won. and for these modern cowboys even with some modern help, trying to herd the buffalo on their native turf, and not always getting their way. >> watch her, jeff, watch her. >> get out of here. up. >> was a hard pounding thrill. buffalo are fierce and fast, able to outrun a horse or man in short bursts. this was terry sorenson's
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fist time. >> when you are out there among the thundering herd, what is it like? >> very exhilarating. very exciting. racing along, wind flying, the buffalo, everything like that, it was just a lot of fun. >> and after participating in more than 40 round ups bob landis knows why the crowds have grown, from just a few hundred, to thousands of spectators. >> they see running horses running just as hard as they can run, cracking whips, yelling, it is just something that you kind of get into it, and they are rooting basically i think for the buffalo. >> and it is no wonder that crowds today root for the buffalo. considering it's tortured past in this country. >> the buffalo here are direct dissen dents of five wild caves says by a south dakota ranker in 1883. by then, the buffalo were this close to extinction. and one of the more shameful episodes in american history, a combination of greed, and
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government policy nearly wiped out these magnificent creatures. >> the nearby rapid city we found a museum, dedicated to tilling that terrible tail. inside, founders susanne showed us a blown up photograph, of buffalo skulls piled several cities high. >> what are we seeing here? >> it is a stunning picture, that illustrates perfectly the massacre. >> a massacre of millions over a span of just a few decades in the 19th century, slaughtered by trappers, and tourists, and hunts, off with the support of the u.s. government. >> as the railroad forge its way west, and settlers began to flood the plays, the byson were in essence in the way. and so they were shot, and exterminated to make way for western settlement. >> the railroads promoted buffalo shooting
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executions wherebyson were slaughtered merely for sport. >> it was just made out to seem such a glorious event, and so sporting and so exciting. to be out in the american west and shooting these large animals. and there was nothing sporting about it. >> then the army hires hunters to kill millions more, knowing the indians considered the enemy back then depended on the you have buffalo for food and clothing. general phillip shareton urged government help for the hunters send them powder and led if you will for the sake of lasting peace, let them kill skin and sell until the buffaloes are exterminated. >> the buffalo hunters did more than an entire army of soldiers could have done. by forcing the -- by getting the indians to go on to to reservations and that was by killing off their food source. >> as many as 60 million buffalo once roamed north
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america, by the 1880s only a few hundred survived. these vast planes one home to thundering herds fell silent and empty. a death wind blew across the prairie wrote the sioux chief a death wind for my people. it was a trackdy. and to know that they are slaughtered just for their tongues or their hides or just for pleasure, i don't like it, it makes me angry. >> it was a shame, something we should be ashamed of. we should be ashamed that human beings did this. >> but slowly and surely, thanks to careful management, the buffalo are coming back, at custard state park, home to the dissen dents of that hand full of stranded calfs the herd
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has grown so it must be called every year. >> the buffalo inspected against infectious diseases. then branded. so the animals can be tracked over time. craig pugsly helped coordinate the annual round up. >> for us it is a management tool. we will do the round up whether anybody showed up or not. we need to bring in the herd and get an accurate account. we vaccinate the heifer caves and we call out the ones we go going to sell. >> so the rounds up is for mar than a spectator sport. how long are you going to keep riding here? >> until the day i die. >> my goal is to be riding along and hit the ground dead.
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as i fall off my horse. >> chasing a buffalo. >> chasing a buffalo. >> now number nearly 400,000, it has taken 100 years but the species is secure, no longer in danger. the ma guestic animal as vived reminder of what 24 country came so close to losing and a stunning example of how these efforts to save an enduring symbol have prevailed. in spite of a scandalous past. >> blame .
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>> welcome to al jazeera america. i'm jonathan betz with the headlines. >> in egypt security forces used tear gas and water canons to disperse crowds. a student was killed in the clashes. they protested over 21 women and girls sentenced to up to 11 years in prison. >> afghanistan's president says a young child was killed and two women wounded in an airstrake in southern afghanistan. hamid karzai blames america and said if the attacks continue it gives him more reason to not sign a security agreement with the united states. >> we have been keeping an eye on comet ison. astronomers hoped for

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