[music] >> hi everyone this is al jazeera america. i'm john siegenthaler in new york. after paris, more than 2 dozen suspects arrested as the dragnet sweeps across europe. search and seizure. washington d.c. averages move to strengthen civil liberties. why police budgets nation wide will take a hit. left behind. for the first time in 50 years most american schoolchildren live in poverty. and global warming scientists say last year was the hottest on record.
we begin tonight with a crack down sweeping across europe. in pairs 12 -- in paris 12 people questioned. in germany two people taken into custody with suspected links to i.s.i.l. in belgium 13 people were arrested after the gun battle on thursday that left two suspects dead. we begin with neave barker. >> on the street police stand guard. marks of a terrific gun fight. this police raid was one of a dozen across the country. the authorities say they prevented an imminent attack on a grand scale. >> this operation was meant to dismantle a terrorist cell. not only a terrorist cell but
also the network behind it. this identification for the time being has shown that these people have the intention to kill several policemen in the street and at police concerns. >> this was a scene on thursday evening. gun fire and explosions ring out as federal police storm the building. the man that filmed these images lived on the street for seven years. >> have no suspicions that anything could happen on your street? >> no, no, not especially. no suspicion. i would like to say that it's very very, very, very sad and we don't want civil war. in belgium we don't want a civil war. >> vervier has a large muslim population. this woman fears that people will start to pay her negative attention.
she says she doesn't want her life to change. after the raid investigators uncovered bomb making equipment money, kalashnikovs, and police themselves may have been the intended target of possible attack. hundreds of belgian citizens are expected of joining i.s. groups. belgiumbelgium's terror rating has been raised to the highest left. neave barker, al jazeera vervier. >> co-director of the center for strategic and international studies. he's in washington d.c. tonight, thomas. first of all how do you expect terrorist groups to respond to today's raids? >> well, i think it's going to stimulate the fight or flight reflex in essentially any lone operator or cell you have across europe.
all of them must expect that. for those on the police radar the police are going to expedite any raids on them. and for those not on the radar they are going to assume that stepped up intelligence is going to reveal their activities or their plans and that would then introduce the raids. so i think they're all going to be scared. they'll either go dark which means they're going to change phone numbers get rid of phones that they think are going to be tracked, maybe go to different homes or flee altogether. the ones that have plans ready to roll or have the equipment the ammunition or the guns, they may engage in attacks fairly soon. >> what have you learned in the last couple of days that strikes you about the last two days of raids? >> well, nothing specific since we're not getting all of the most specific intelligence. it's just too early for them to release this information. but it is clear that you have a network spread across europe. when you have more than 3,000 foreign fighters from europe and
you have at least 500 who have returned you have the ingredients for blow-back from syria and iraq and perhaps other places yemen and mali that can hit europe. i like to think of these fighters as shrapnel coming out of the battlefield and they're going back to roughly 80 countries from which the fighters hail. that's a problem for north america, africa, europe, 750 plus fighters and south asia and southeast asia and malaysia and the philippines. >> you might think they would expedite their attacks? >> sure, absolutely. for those that have been planning for a long time that are insensed by what they see in their own immediate context and by what they saw with the denigration of the prophet muhammed and what they see overseas with the attacks across the globe they are itching to
go. and if they think that they are about to be raided then why wouldn't they expedite their own attacks? so you have converging pressures here. the police think they have to act very quickly to prevent something and the fighters who also feel the same. you could have quite a series of firefight here. >> we don't have any information here but you think these raids are based on the previous events that happened in paris or watching over a long period of time and decided it was time the go? >> people they have been watching for some time and even the raids in germany. i don't think that the raids in paris led to intelligence but they could have. we just don't know. it could be that on the phones of the kouachi brothers and the others involved this this, numbers connecting them to people in belgium which of course is where they got the arms could also indicate connections with these other
groups who the police would then think perhaps they are going to attack in light of the paris strikes. but my guess is that these are units, these are cells that were already under surveillance and i think the police are on edge more. they're getting pressure from policy makers and from the public to make sure there is nothing like paris happening in their countries. >> as we know, it only takes one person to pull off a dramatic attack. do you get a sense these are all lone wolves out there or are many of them connected? >> well it would be great if we really knew the answer to that. but my sense is you have a mix. you have individuals who see themselves as acting as the vanguard for the jihadi movement, that is more active in the center of gravity in the middle east. then you have people like the man up in ottawa and the one in sydney who are simply individuals who want to act in
furtherance of the goals of al qaeda or i.s.i.s. then you have the cells. and i'm certain that there are many many cells made up of two or more people who plan significant attacks. again seeing themedz as more of the -- them as more of the expeditionary arm of al qaeda able to strike in parts of the coalition, countries that tolerate the denigration of the prophet and those that are long time supporters of the united states or have interest in the middle east that they would like the harm. >> thomas, good to see you thanks for sharing your insight we appreciate it. >> you're welcome. >> in france today secretary of state john kerry paid tribute to the victims of the attacks. u.s. faced criticism for sending a high ranking official to the unity march.
jacky rowland reports. >> it was a damage limitation exercise. washington has recognized that it made a mistake by only sending its paris ambassador to the solidarity march on sunday. >> today i just really wanted to come here and share a hug with all of paris and all of france. i wanted to express to you personally the sheer horror and revulsion that all americans felt for cowardly and despicable act, the assault on innocent lives, and on fundamental values. >> reporter: an unscheduled stop on his trip, john kerry visits the kosher supermarket where the attacker killed four people. meanwhile french police say they arrested 12 people overnight in raids across the paris region. they're suspected of providing
logistical support to the attackers. >> most of them are known by police services for breaching the common law. the paris prosecutor will speak on the ongoing investigation when appropriate. >> more funerals are taking place for the victims of those attacks. colleagues and friends have been saying good-bye to the cartoonist and editor of "charlie hebdo," charb just outside paris. more than 1,000 police officers and soldiers are on patrol. after a bomb scare the whole of france remains on terror alert. jacky rowland. al jazeera paris. >> demonstrations against "charlie hebdo" erupted in several countries today. four people were reported dead
in niger as protests turned violent there. in pakistan, four dozen fought with police, four people including journalists suffered gunshot wounds. in algeria police clashed with more than a,000 people, dozens of protesters arrested. "charlie hebdo" first edition since the paris attacks featured the cartoon of the prophet on its cover. president obama and british prime minister david caneron senior washington correspondent mike viqueria is at the white house, mike mike . >> as law enforcement raids continue across europe and on a day when british patrols were on duty the british prime minister
david cameron and powm, how to prevent further attacks. >> with europe on edge, president obama and british prime minister david cameron were in lock step. the attacks that sparked worldwide. >> poison oust fanatical death cult of a narrative that's subverting the religion of islam. >> allowing government surveillance a way around encryption technology now built into many sites. if they refuse cameron has said certain sites may be banned in the u.k. >> we are not asks for back doors. we believe in very strong front doors. >> that statement sparked controversy. but on friday, mr. obama agreed. even if they have solid
information about a potential plot. >> despite knowing that information, despite having a phone number or despite having a social media address or e-mail address, that we can't penetrate that? that's a problem. >> mr. obama said the ethnic and religious tension gripping europe is not as big an issue in the united states. >> our biggest advantage is that our muslim populations, they feel themselves to be americans. and there is this incredible process of immigration and assimilation that is part of our tradition. >> since arriving in washington, cameron has been calling u.s. senators lobbying against legislation that would impose more sanctions on iran.
talks to prevent iran being able to make nuclear weapons are at a sensitive stage. by friday, any move by congress could scuttle a deal. >> congress should be aware that if this diplomatic solution fails the risks and likelihood that this ends up being a military situation is heightened and congress will have to own that as well. >> and john, president obama at that press conference threatened to veto if congress were to be successful and pass those further sanctions on iran. the president's problem john is many top democrats agree they should get tougher on iran with those sanctions. so the question for the president becomes will he have enough votes in congress to sustain a veto if it comes to that? john. >> mike viqueria at the white house. mike thank you very much. now to a case before the u.s. supreme court. the court is stepping into one of the most controversial issues in the united states.
today the justices agreed to rule on whether all 50 states must allow gay and lesbian couples to marry. lisa stark is in washington d.c. with more. >> reporter: john, do same sex couples have a constitutional right to marry? that is the key civil rights question the u.s. sprorlt will now decide. they will decide it in the case -- u.s. supreme court will decide. they will decide it in four cases, michigan, ohio, kentucky and tennessee all ban same sex marriage. earlier this session the supreme court punted on that question. really their hand was forced because in november the sixth circuit ruled that there is no constitutional right to same sex marriage. and that conflicted with rulings by other appellate courts. so it is up to the supreme court to decide. now, the court has touched on this issue in the past. it did decide a case but on
procedural grounds that allowed same sex marriages to proceed in california. they didn't really decide that one on the merits of the case though. and they also threw out part of the federal defense of marriage act. they said the federal government does need to recognize same sex marriages that are performed in states that allow them. and in fact, 36 states now allow same sex marriages. of course depending on how the court rules they may become legal in all 50 states. we are expecting imuments to take place -- arguments to take place this april. a final decision from the court by the time its term ends in june. john. >> that's lisa stark reporting. up next: more than half of u.s. public school students now live in poverty. where the problem is the worse. plus the effort to build a reusable rocket, the high risk
>> there's a troubling new report out about poverty and america's children. for the first time in 50 years most students in u.s. public schools now come from low income homes and that trend could get even worse. jonathan betz is here with more. jonathan. >> explosion of needy children in recent years reaching a troubling threshold that has serious implications for the country. it's lunch time at chinook middle school just outside seattle, and economic disparities in the cafeteria. nearly eight out of ten kids qualify for subsidized school lunches. >> it's hard to learn when you're hungry or when you don't have everything you need at home. >> reporter: a new study confirms these kids are not
alone. for the first time in 50 years most public school students, 51% are living in poverty. that means households who earn less than $28,000 a year. people like april white a single mother of three girls in new orleans who struggles to make the best of it. >> you know, the main thing i preach of course is education. and perseverance in whatever you do. you know, you take a bad situation and you totally make it good. >> reporter: the south is particularly poverty stricken. mississippi has the highest concentration of low income student. 73% or nearly three out of every four kids followed by new mexico and indiana. >> we can't discount race, those particular places that are high concentration of blacks there are high concentration of poverty. that's why you see the numbers you do in the south.
>> reporter: generators worry poor students are starting behind their peers and rarely if ever catch it. more likely to drop out of school and less likely to go to college. chinook middle school is trying to buck the trend with more tutors for kids and more training for teachers. reading and math scores have been rising. >> providing the expectation for the kids that they can do it. putting a great teacher in front of the students day in and day out. >> reporter: without changes people who study the gap between rich and poor say it will only grow wider. >> education is an investment in the country. if we don't educate the poorest among us, then we're going to pay for it later. >> president obama wants to spend another billion dollars to help states educate poor children. although though many question whether enough money has been devoted and whether it's actually being used effectively.
john. >> jonathan thank you. chris emdon associate professor professor, creating hip hop ed movement creating music in the classroom. how did it get to this point? >> i think it's a larger belief that education is for the majority. and for a very long time we always felt that the majority were folks who were middle class who were doing well or upwardly mobile. focusing on that population and not the minority population, socioeconomically, racially, economically blown up in our faces today. >> so a lot more white kids are going to private school? >> definitely so, a lot more affluent kids are going to private schools. makes people feel that public schools are awful. any parent hears this general conversation about how public schools are so bad takes every
opportunity to send their kids elsewhere. the schools in the united states are more segregated than they were in the 1950s. every parent who has the opportunity removes their child from public schools. this dysfunction this report that came out today tells us that. >> what about the continuing cry for charter schools? >> i think the charter school push is also birthed out of this. a alternative from the traditional public school. >> doesn't that take kids away from public schools? >> this push for nonpublic schools pushes this -- it opens up the door for had to be a privatization of education. folks were invested in education for the sake of making money and not for the purpose of educating
young people or addressing the needs of poor children. >> when you take a look at across the country is it all about funding in many ways? if you had more money could you make the schools better? >> it is certainly about the issue of poor funding. the question we've had perpetually. i've always said this if you spend more money on continuing dysfunction you're just going to get more dysfunction and unfortunately what happens is the folks who end up being in those schools with disfungal policies and practices end up being blamed for why those are not doing well, rather than a larger landscape where we make more decisions about what teaching and learning is. learning is a deeply private experience. education has to focus on unique needs and when we overstandardize education we don't meet the needs of certain
populations. >> you sound like some conservatives i've heard of recently. get rid of the federal government. >> exactly. meeting the needs of young people, both factions don't focus on what the real core of the issue is, which is educating young people within schools and also impacting communities. president obama recently came out with his new initiative that was focusing more on head start and early education. but that in many ways is erasing the experiences of young adults who have not benefited from public education. >> don't public schools have to take on the needs of these kids in poverty? don't they have to take on additional needs other than just education? because we say oh you know if we educate them they'll have the same opportunity but if they're hungry when they go to school it is a different situation. >> absolutely. not only do we have to take care of making the kids eat the kids
in poverty the ones that most likely come from abusive homes. >> how do you do all that? >> by training teachers and making schools aa part of the community are rather than a place where you can supposedly jump out of to have a better lifestyle. the school has to be reembedded in communities. to be able to have parents to come in there there needs to be computer training for communities. >> sounds more like a community center. >> a community center is what's needed in these communities. a light house where everyone feels they can go to, to have a better life. >> hearing taxpayers say we're going to spend more money and throw it down the hole. >> what we are doing with our money it is not an issue of spending more, it's an issue of spending to meet the unique needs of the schools in those communities. it's quite simple. >> it's always an interesting conversation. chris, thank you very much.
>> good to be here. >> a roman catholic archdiocese has filed for bankruptcy. this is the 12th catholic diocese in the u.s. to apply for protection after abuse claims. coming up next on this broadcast: a big change coming for police. could have a big impact on department budgets. plus the growing fears that westerners fighting for i.s.i.l. will bring the deadly violence home.
a decade, found. can it be reawakened? >> have i missed out on parts i'm sure. >> and against type. cheyenne jackson why he doesn't always get a fair shake in hollywood. >> attorney general eric holder has announced a drastic change that will limit police power across the u.s. a federal law that will allow police to seize cash and property from people even without proof that a crime was committed. the law has helped police raise billions of dollars. jamie mcintire is in washington with details. jamie. >> john this order from attorney general acre holder puts on hold civil lib libertarians, not even charged with a crime. the legal term is civil asset
forfeiture. billions of dollars of property and cash of americans whom the police simply suspect of criminal activity, without ever having to prove anything. the program that holder is actually putting the brakes on is known as the equitable sharing program and under it, local police state police are able to keep up to 80% of the proceeds of money they kept, often went directly into their local budgets. it became a significant source of funding for many police departments around the country and gave rise to a whole industry of consultants who advised the police how to maximize these seizures, especially after routine traffic stops. to target anyone they suspected of criminal intent and thoofn suspicion was based -- often that suspicion was based on, getting that money an back you wrote have to hire an attorney and would you have to prove that you were innocent not the other
way around. now in the statement today attorney general eric holder said "asset forfeiture remains a critical asset tool when used appropriately providing unique means going after criminal even terrorist organizations adding the new policy saying these policies could continue to be used to take the profit out of crime and return assets to victims while safeguarding civil liberty. under the new rule, police can no longer seize cars and property and cash, they can seize guns ammunition and explosives and child pornography. which amount to a tiny percentage of these seizures, make this into a crime fighting tool not a fundraising too. >> balk the attorney general ended it -- because the attorney general ended it is it that he's saying the police weren't
handling it properly? >> there's a pretty widespread consensus, that police departments were abusing this law and that many americans were swept up in this process. where really they were astounded to discover that police could simply take property or cash from them and they had no way to get it back or no way to easily establish their innocence. there is also going to be legislation on capitol hill that is trying to provide oversight from police departments that do this activity. >> cory pegues, thank you for joining us. >> thank you for having me. >> how did they get to this point? >> you have to understand that 30 years ago, in the '80s, there was a tremendous amount of drug cartels. the federal government came up with that law so they could take
the assets of these drug cartels. acting right now it went overboard. i think it's good, police departments shouldn't refrain about -- they shouldn't be upset about this because now you have to tie the proceeds to a criminal organization. >> do you see it as an abuse of police power when you were in the police department? >> no. as a commanding officer yes we have taken civil forfeiture proceedings, but it was tied to crimes. so you have to understand around america you have thousands of police departments. you know, these little towns they're taking they're pulling people over and they're taking money and there's no checks and balances. you take 80% so you take $100,000 you get $80,000 and the federal government gets $20,000 and there's no checks and balances. it was really out of control. >> you've got strained relationships already between justice departments and police
departments around the country as a result of what's going on in ferguson and new york. how is that going to effect that? >> it is all about transparency. this is a transparency thing it was good for 30 years. you was able to use this for 30 years and now we have got to get back to good old fashioned policing, which is tie it to the crime and you'll be able to take the assets. >> but when they stopped -- so you're not talking about just a regular police stop, where they say okay, guy's got a lot of cash? >> yes, that's what would happen. could you pull somebody over, they have a lot of cash, they can't account for the cash. you take it, civil forfeiture. then the ounce is on them to prove -- the owns onus is on them to prove they own it. that is $8,000 gone because
they're not going to fight for it. >> toss this move damage legitimate efforts to get drugs off the street? >> no, but in these situations police weren't targeting drugs. they were targeting money. >> but it started with drugs. >> after 9/11, we did it again after 9/11 trying to target terrorists. they had training going around the country how to pull people over, what questions to ask to see if they have money in the car. it didn't become drugs anymore it became money. >> 20% is a lot of dough. what happens now? >> the mayor is going to have to come up with some more money. >> the towns are going to have to come up with more money right? >> this is about america about civil liberties. this is what it's all about. do we want to work on that budget 20% budget and violate
people's civil liberties or have cops do extensive investigations. >> is this remarkable it's gone on as long as it has? when you start talking about civil liberties, this is a program that's decades old. >> decades old. but it's like everything else, if you are not looking add it, it just goes on. -- looking at it, it just goes on. let's take a look at this . that's what happened. i don't think this is a big bill, police departments should rally around and say we should go back to the way we should have been doing it. it shouldn't be an issue. >> cory, thanks for being here. >> thanks for having me. >> in what authorities call antiterror raids 12 suspects arrested in france, two more in germany, more arrested in belgium after a thursday shootout that left two suspects
dead. the not of mother of a i.s.i.l. recruit, is speaking out. 19-year-old ahmsa khan. this week, his mother speaks out. >> we condemn the brain washing and recruiting of children through the internet. >> more than 100 have been arrested for trying to get to the country or on their way back. the problem of young westerners going to fight in iraq and syria is not unique to u.s. phil itnerer has that story. >> for the dace family, fighting seems close to home.
>> three young men from the family went to fight in the region. they left home without telling anyone to join a rebel group that is a arrival of rival of the now notorious islamic state. one will not be coming back. >> it was very difficult he just became 18 two days before he was killed. it was his birthday and he had all the life in front of him. >> for more than three years now the world has watched the conflict in syria with no clear idea how to stop the killing. it shocked and angered many, particularly in muslim communities. but equally shocking, the brutal tactics of some rebel groups like the islamic state. that's why many americans were stunned to see a recruitment drive on social media by the islamic state group by muslim men in the west. >> my brothers living in the west.
i know how you feel, you feel depressed, the cure for the depression is jihad. >> for those who monitor these groups, there is real concern that fighters from the islamic state group known as i.s.i.s. could come back bath battle l hardened. >> threal come back to attack the home countries if you like. >> all of this has abu bark concerned for his children both their safety and their humanity. >> this is one of the ideology they might pick up there which really have no connection to islam nor humanity. the bigger worry is they might get killed there. >> authorities here at britain's
intelligence service mi-6 say finding those citizens, returning from fighting in syria and iraq, is their main priority. vee ispriority. visa access. phil ittner. al jazeera. >> nigeria's president made a surprise visit to refugees forced from their homes by boko haram attacks. more from mohamed are idris. >> nigeria's president goodluck
jonathan. >> when i hear some negative stories what i can do is continue to encourage you to do your best for this country. and surely you will be rewarded accordingly. >> reporter: but some nigerians argue the troops are not getting the support they need. >> this military is not equipped to deal with the threat. this military is not funded. nigerians are frustrated. in any other circumstance you would really say yes we would welcome foreign intervention in this matter because this government has shown total lack of capacity. total unwillingness. >> jonathan also met supporters --
met victims of violence. >> make sure you don't stay in these camps for too long. >> promise by the president many say three have heard it before. >> translator: his visit is of no use. where was he all this time? he condoned the french when people were killed. why has it taken so long to share our grief? i think this is all politics. >> jonathan is facing the toughest battle of his career with presidential elections just a few weeks away. his popularity has taken a hit. some see his visits as a ploy to connect with voters but his handlers dj deny this. hopes the president keeps his promises. mohamed idris, al jazeera. the hottest year on record,
>> climate scientists say there's new evidence that the planet is getting warmer. 2014 is the hottest year ever recorded and the other highest years have come in the past two dates. jonathan betz reports. >> according to a new report from nasa and noaa, because it did not happen in an el nino year which usually contributes to warming. parts of the midwest were unusually cool. but alaska, california, arizona and nevada saw their warmest year on record, helping to make the drought there even worse. increase in carbon dioxide and other human emissions into the disappear.
>> taking carbon out of the ground mainly as coal oil or natural gas and we burn it. when you burn coal you produce carbon dioxide. which contributes to the greenhouse gas effect, we'll continue to see more records broken. >> reporter: the ten warmest years on record except for 1998, have all occurred in the 21st century. every year since scientists say the plan it has warmed by an average of 1.4°. >> without these global climate data we would have no baseline from which to measure the state of our climate and how it changes with time. >> later this year, nearly 200 countries will meet to figure out how to cut global warming and avoid the floods, droughts and other disasters that come with it. jonathan betz, al jazeera. >> for more perspective on the weather and climate change here is rebecca stephenson.
>> well above normal but look at the eastern part of the united states midwest even. that's where we were definitely colder than normal. but that particular area is so small in comparison to the rest of the globe. so every year we add in what these little temperature deviations are bringing us. and in the year 2014 even with the small deviation even though we were cool in the u.s. we have to add up the whole globe. yes we were warmer, so much warmer. in fact in the pacific ocean to the north that influenced the weather pattern. the day-to-day weather pattern. now that caused dry conditions with drought in california and warm weather to the weathers west but to the east, boy were we -- but to the east, boy were we cold that's weather what we are looking at was climate.
this is weather and we're talking about cool temperatures again, each morning a little more chilly with a storm system bringing another round of rain to the west with a threat of flooding and a little more snow into parts of the northeast. john. >> rebecca thank you. a new video shows how close an unarmed rocket came to safely landing back on earth. the spacex attempted to land on a barge in the atlantic ocean. just delivered cargo to the international space station. the company says the rocket's fins simply lost power. a decade long mystery on mars may have just been solved. the british spacecraft beagle 2 scientists thought it was destroyed. now they said they have found it intact. andrew potter has more. >> to britain it was a
groundbreaking mission. sending a spacecraft to land on mars and at $75 million, at a for example of the cost of most space exploration. but after beagle 2 was released into the martian atmosphere on christmas day 2003 it was never seen or heard from again. until now. >> what we can say today with some confidence is that beagle 2 is no longer lost. >> it had been feared beagle 2 had crashed into the the surface of mars or bounced off the atmosphere into space. recent photographs from an american spacecraft orbiting mars has turned that thinking on its head. this is what they think is beagle 2 standing near its planned resting spot. >> it had four panels all neaded needed to deploy. we needed the antenna to command beagle 2.
what's extremely frustrating about it is we got so close. >> this is britain's first attempt to getting a spacecraft to another planet. rather than being seen as a failure, unlocking the secrets of mars. >> beagle 2 collected scientific data it may be still on beagle 2 and we can't get to it. >> colin died last year, but his daughter was there to hear the news that her father's life's work wasn't lost in space. >> he'd be saying so, when are we going again? when's the next mission? you know how we going to do things differently? >> the scientists think there's ever chance beagle 2 would still work if only there was a way to open its solar panels. the european space agencies plans to land a probe next year,
>> cheyenne jackson is phone as a triple threat. singing acting dancing his way to fame, he got his start on broadway as elvis in all shook up. then glee, and 30 rock. he did it all as battling chilly. paul beban asked him how he grew up in theater. >> there wasn't a lot of theater, but i used to go to garage sales and i found the annie cast album. i was going to be the first boy
to play annie i made it to broadway, i thought it was one theater. >> loving family of course but -- >> very loving family. but very nondenominational four square, very you know, we had a little sign on top of our tv that said if jesus was here, would you be watching this? so it was something that was always in the back of my mind, that i was going to have to deal with that. i came out at 19. and really, that was the beginning. i mean my parents had to -- we'd kind of all took a intat cak sabbatical to from each other. because it was a lot to take in. but then we all came together, my parents walked me down the aisle four months ago.
it doesn't always happen. >> it's heartening to hear that maybe it was tough for them at first and they needed whatever you said, two years of adjusting to it and they came around. >> yes. >> talk about that experience. so many people have to go through what you went through. it plays out well or it doesn't. >> my parents have always respected me and i've respected them. i see these young adults, they come out and they want their parents to accept them right now, well you don't understand me so i'm over. you really have to -- your parents have to mourn their idea of what they thought your life was going to be. and i think until you give them that space it's never going to completely just -- you know, sometimes people will come out and it was like boom, i always knew bring your boyfriend over but that's rare. >> professionally do you think it's ever hurt you? >> i used to obsess over that.
i came out when i was doing all shook up. my friends were like, i don't know if you should say that. i came out in the new york times. i never thought about it. i was out. i wouldn't want to use nonspecific pronouns on the red carpet. >> i love yu thought about your thought about it. if i don't make it an issue it's not going to be an issue. it's not going to always be in your control but you owned it. >> first step, you say yes and people go oh my gosh, can we move ahead? have i missed out on parts? i'm sure i've tested out on huge things, you can't tell me behind closed doors that doesn't come up. but i have a great career and i've been working for many, many years consistently and i wouldn't trade anything so yeah. >> among other new things in your life is pop music.
>> yeah. >> what's going on there? >> i've always sung pop music i've always written pop music but it wasn't anything i really wanted to focus on until a couple of years ago when i was going through everything i was going through writing was my therapy. writing was my way of getting everything out. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ i give up what does it mean for you and me ♪ ♪ >> and getting sober honestly that's a big thing for anyone. >> yeah. >> especially big for a performer yes? >> it's the thing i'm most proud of and i've had some great successes in this last year. i had wonderful opportunities and experiences. the thing that i'm most proud of is my sobriety. because without that i wouldn't be able to do it, wouldn't be able to sit here, to continue and to grow, and took a long time. >> well given your successes and your great personal story i'm sure you're going to have some young people looking up to you.
thank you terrific. >> cheyenne jackson is currently performing his one man show, "eyes wide open, until january 24th. coming up, years after jerry sandusky abuse scandal the ncaa set it will restore penn state's wins. john kerry brought james taylor to an event in paris today he sung his classic tune, "you've got a friend." to show solidarity between america and the french. we leave you with a little bit of that performance. ♪ coming rung to see you again -- come running to see you again ♪ ♪ winter, spring, summer or fall ♪ yes all you got to do is call