Skip to main content

tv   News  Al Jazeera  June 22, 2015 7:00pm-8:01pm EDT

7:00 pm
town? >> our internet's half the speed of dial-up. >> could big cable be controlling your access to the web? >> it's not even gonna play. >> your right to access knowledge is being limited. >> techknow's team of experts show you how the miracles of science... >> i'm standing in a tropical wind storm. >> can affect and surprise us. >> wow! some of these are amazing. >> "techknow", where technology meets humanity. next monday, 6:30 eastern. only on al jazeera america. this is al jazeera america, live from new york city. i'm tony harris. south carolina governor joins the call to remove the confederate flag from the state house in columbia. a legacy in slavery, the president says despite some improvement, the country is still not cured of racism. and greece offers new debt-deal proposals to european union leaders, holding emergency summit in brussels. ♪
7:01 pm
and we begin in south carolina and what appears to be a shift in attitude towards the confederate flag. today the governor and many top elected officials showed their support for moving the flag from the grounds of the state capitol. del walters joins us now live. del, talk us through another extraordinary day in south carolina. >> tony up until a short while ago, there were two major dramas playing out here. the political collimate and the climate itself which a short while ago the clouds moved in. but before that the temperature was 97 degrees, feeling closer to 110. despite those poor temperatures there has been a steady flow of visitors here at mother emanual ame church.
7:02 pm
white, black, and they have been non-stop. and the other thing is the political climate. >> it's time to move the flag from the capitol grounds. [ cheers and applause ] >> surrounded by a bipartisan group of state and federal officials, south carolina governor nickky haley, joined the growing call to remove the confederate flag. >> for good or for bad, the flag will always be a part of the soil of south carolina, but this is a moment in which we can say that that flag while an integral part of our past does not represent the future of our great state. >> reporter: the governor's comments came hours after the political leaders in charleston called for action. >> the time has come to remove
7:03 pm
this symbol of hate and division from our state capitol. the time has come for the general assembly to do what it ought to have done a long time ago. >> i respectfully ask the general assembly reasonably tired and weary of the long session, to take the extra step and to tend to this unfinished business. move this flag to the appropriate historical context. >> south carolina's use of the confederate flag become an issue once again, after pictures emerged showing accused church gunman waving with confederate banners. on sunday dozens of people gathered in the state capitol, to call for the flag to be taken down and some spray painted the words black lives matter on a
7:04 pm
confederate memorial. on tuesday they lead a march to columbia calling for the flag to be removed. the protest lead to a compromise that moved the flag from the dome to a nearby monument to the confederate soldiers but the deal requires a two-third vote and there are a growing number of lawmakers in favor of removing the flag. the sons say it will fight to keep it. the group issued a statement, saying in part there is no link between the charleston massacre and the confederate memorial banner, don't try to create one. but some political leaders say removing the flag is only the start and there is more work to be done. >> it will not solve the racial divide in south carolina. we need a positive discourse on the problems that continue to
7:05 pm
plague our state. >> reporter: the rest, of course will be up to the political powers here the state senator who says he will sponsor the legislation to do away with the flag says he wants that next to the pastor of this church who was also a state senator, of course he was among the nine gunned down according to police by dylann roof inside this church. he says he believes it will cost him his seat in the state legislature, but it is something he should have done five years ago. >> del thank you. for more let's go to david shuster. he is in tonight for ali velshi. governor haley, i thought she did a good job today, trying to find that way to thread that
7:06 pm
needle. what is her police cat background? >> she won a tough race several years ago, and some folks have suggested at some point down the road she could conceivably be a presidential candidate, and a lot of folks buzzing that based on her performance today she has put herself on the radar as early as 2020. sometimes it's a -- defines moment like this that causes is someone to become part of the national consciousness. she had a personal break up that was bad, and that is certainly in the rearview mirror now. >> gotcha. how is this playing in the position of so many g.o.p.
7:07 pm
presidential candidates. >> in the past the south carolina prime has usually been won by the person who has gone on to win the republican nomination, but also in the past, they have also decided to punt on the flag and say this is a state issue. that's what we heard about from the weekend from rick santorium and others. they are in the position of being too far to the fight, compared to the other republican leaders in south carolina, so they may have to do damage control now as to why the south carolina leaders were able to show the courage that they perhaps for political reasons were unable to. >> carly fiorina has come out against the confederate flag. talk me through that. >> she was out there all alone until today. she said i'm going to break from
7:08 pm
the pack. and say the confederate flag has to be removed. she was betting if this was going to be a problem, in south carolina it would benefit her to break away from the pack. that may change now. but it shows that carly at least was willing to sacrifice her own position in south carolina to try to give herself a boost. >> all right. david what else is coming up on the program tonight? >> he is shooter in charleston said he got some of his inspiration from a website of the council of conservative citizens. we have an interview with their spokesman about whether they bare any responsibility -- >> the important thing here is to realize that if the only reaction to this crime is to ratchet up this narrative of white guilt, white responsibility slavery, jim crow these days for young whites like dylann roof who have no hand in creating the society
7:09 pm
in which relive they are going to hear that and say this is nuts. >> a fascinating interview coming up tonight. >> david thank you. you can watch david shuster tonight at 10:30 eastern right here on al jazeera america. frank talk from president obama on racism. he used the n-word in an interview on a podcast. he said the charleston church shooting illustrates that no matter how far we have come there is still a long way to go. >> racism we are not cleared of clearly, and it's not just a matter of it no being polite to say nigger in public. that's not the measure of whether racism still exists nort. it's not just a matter of overt discrimination. societies don't overnight
7:10 pm
completely erase everything that happened two to 300 years prior. >> mike what is the white house saying about why the president was so frank during that interview on that program? >> tony it is interesting. even given the context of discussion on race and even given the fact that he has made similar arguments in the past just not quite in the same way, and given the fact that president obama through the course of his administration and political career, has been called the ugly epithet that he himself just used the pact that he used the n-word came as something of a shock to many people around the country. you described the circumstances. the president was in california last thursday, friday saturday coming home sunday. along the way sitting in this gentlemen's garage mark maren, he has a podcast titled wtf.
7:11 pm
the president covered a lot of territory, talked for about an hour, but this is the one thing that has really jumped out at people. josh earnst was asked if the president had any regrets in using that word? >> the president made clear that it's not possible to judge the nation's progress on race issues based solely on an evaluation of our country's manners. the fact is that we have made undeniable progress in this country over the last several decades, and as the president himself has often said anyone who lived in this country through the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, notes the tremendous progress we have made. >> and the president invoking the speech he made just last march in selma, the 50th anniversary of the civil rights
7:12 pm
march, the jim crow era discrimination, and that lasted well into our lifetimes as you heard his spokesman say, but the president says he looks at his daughters and he cease the way they interact with all of their friends and associates and tlasz -- classmates. he says there is no question that race relations have come a long way but the feel there is still a long way to go. >> how does the president plan to honor the victims of last week's shooting? >> the president, vice president, and first lady are going to be traveling to charleston south carolina on friday. they will be there for the funeral of the pastor of that church. you recall in the immediate aftermath, the morning after the murder of those nine people president obama appeared in the
7:13 pm
briefing room and revealed he had known pastor pinkney for sometime. the president will deliver the eulogy on friday. >> mike thank you. in oak creek, wisconsin, the charleston victims were honored at the temple that was the target of an attack three years ago. six people died another four were injured when a gunman with ties to white sup recommend sis groups entered the temple. and they were joined by a pastor of an african methodist episcopal church in st. paul minnesota. we are joined by an activist who's father died in that shooting. i'm smiling, because, it's good to see you. >> it's good to see you have tony too. >> yeah good to have you on the program. some people are calling the
7:14 pm
accused charleston shooter as a psychotic monster. you say that's an easy way out. >> mental illness has always been an issue. it is rising again. but it's a cop out, because at the end of the day, we know we are the social constructs that build that person. we help build that person so when president obama said you know it's not just that we use that word in public yes, it's partly that. like it's what we do to each other and how we treat each other, and right now we haven't been treating each other with the proper etiquette and respect that humans should give each other. >> yeah. august -- what three years since your father was murdered in the very temple that he helped build. can i ask you to share some of your thoughts of him as you
7:15 pm
approach another anniversary of his death. >> i mean this father's day was especially hard because he -- he gives a ton of advice he was like our home guru and he would just talk about stuff, and missing him on father's day and thinking about the tragedy at the same time and being there with the families of the nine that have suffered so much and i can never compare apples to oranges on this because this type of racism and hate and hatred is over 100 years in coming and it was epitomized that night. dad would say we're the human race. we don't call people black people or white people we have gotten to that point where we're polarized. he was like don't be absolute. he would always say that.
7:16 pm
and i think we have gotten to that society where we only think in no or yes or this bipolar way, and that's not the way it is. there's a myriad of emotions and feelings. >> your community, the sikh community asked this question after this horrible attack. the question was, what did we do wrong? what did we do wrong? and in response you -- you opened your doors as we saw at emanual ame yesterday, your community forgave as the families of victims forgave during that first court appearance for roof and you created a unite to preach tolerance. why was that your approach? >> i think that the root of understanding understanding sikhs is the
7:17 pm
principals they teach, epitomized in mother emmanuel's forgiveness, and ultimately in this situation, we used the light on [ inaudible ] which is a mantra. we don't sell our mantras or prayers, we give them away. [ inaudible ] means eternal optimism. if we're in creation over destruction it is the eternal optimism that is the basis, and if we have that inside of us no matter how horrible the suffering that life will give us, we can help survive, and improve so it never happens again. >> you plan to get to charleston at some point here in the next maybe few days or so? >> it was in charleston i was there for the prayers.
7:18 pm
arnold and pardeep was with us. >> oh, yeah. >> we went there to help out. and now i'm on my way back. because there's a lot of work to do in milwaukee as well. >> mardeep, good to see you. he is a filmmaker and activist. there are new clues this evening on the two-week old hunt for the convicts who broke out of a prison in up state new york. dna has been discovered in a burglarized cabin. paul beban has more. >> the focus of the men is now back in the region just south of the canadian border. it's a rural area but there are signs tonight that the police may finally be closing in. the next appears to be tightening around convicted killers richard matt and david sweat. police are swarming the area
7:19 pm
around a cabin about 20 miles from the clinton correctional facility, where the men pulled off a daring breakout more than two weeks ago. >> we have developed evidence that the suspects may have spent time in a cabin in this area. we have law enforcement officers from around the state and nation searching for more evidence. >> reporter: there are multiple reports that dna from the two men was found inside the cabin, possibly from boots, bloody sox, or toiletry even a pair of prison underwear, and the evidence suggests the men were there within the last 48 hours. police wouldn't get into details, saying whatever they found has been sent out for testing. >> we have recovered specific items from the cabin, forwarded them to the appreciate laboratories, but we're not prepared to release that evidence at this time so we do not jeopardize the continuity of
7:20 pm
the investigation. >> the discovery marks the latest twist in the sprawling search for the men. police flooded the area arounding friendship new york after reports of possible siting. that tip went nowhere. >> we continue to aggressively pursue the leads in this case. we have developed more than 2,000 leads and more continue to come? >> this prison worker has been charged with helping the men plan the escape. the latest tip came from a man checking on his cabin on saturday, who reportedly saw a man dash out the back door leaving behind a jar of peanut butter and a jug of water. authorities are urging people to be vigilant and careful. they should be treated as armed and dangerous. the area around mountain view is
7:21 pm
very popular with hunters. it's filled with remote cabins that the men could be using. so police are asking people to check their surveillance cameras and report anything suspect. >> coming up next. government under attack. afghanistan's parliament is rocked by a suicide bombing. plus the clock is ticking for a deal to avoid default on greece's million billion dollars debt, the emergency continues, still no solution. ♪
7:22 pm
7:23 pm
afghanistan's government take under attack today. first a suicide bomb went off, and then fighters tried to storm the building. jennifer glasse reports from kabul. >> reporter: the parliamentary session was just getting underway when this happened.
7:24 pm
there was confusion. it's just an electrical problem says the speaker. but it was a taliban suicide bomb going off outside of the gates, leaving cars in flames. other fighters took up positions in a building across the street firing on the entrance to the parliament. police and special forces quickly arrived to move any senators and mp's from the building, and fight the attackers. taliban attacks aren't limited to the capitol. in northern afghanistan, the armed group now controls two districts, just outside of the provincial capitol, and about 40 kilometers away from that. thousands of taliban fighters are involved and the government has sent in more than 7,000 soldiers and police. 10s of thousands of civilians have been displaced in nearly two months of fighting. that's when the taliban spring
7:25 pm
offensive started. it launched assaults all over afghanistan. and they are struggling without the heavy weapons and logistic call support they had last year. it seemed a direct challenge to the afghan parliament. jennifer glasse, al jazeera, kabul. a new u.n. report lays blame on both sides of last year's gaza strip conflict. the israeli army and palestinian immigrants broke international law, and it says their actions may amount to war crimes. >> reporter: should there now be war crimes charges following the gaza war? that's the key question posed by the released report by the u.n. commission of inquiry into the war, a conflict that killed well over 2,000 people. the panel's findings criticize palestinian armed groups for extra judicial executions.
7:26 pm
but there was particularly strong condemnation of israel's indiscriminate bombardment. >> the attacks on homes and families which lead to large numbers of family members dying together when their homes were instruct -- struck in the middle of the night. these had particular consequences for children. approximately 551 children died last summer. >> reporter: in the israeli parliament, prime minister benjamin netenyahu attacked the commission. >> the united nations human rights council has a singular obsession with israel. it has passed more resolutions against israel than sens syria, north korea and iran combined. in fact there have been more than against all of the countries of the world combined. so israel treats this report as flawed and by -- biased. >> reporter: in gaza there was
7:27 pm
criticism from hamas. >> all the time they tried to be balanced, and they tried to make kind of quality between the killers and the victims and this is -- something that cannot be accepted. >> reporter: the latest report comes two months after another internal u.n. report which said israel was responsible for attacks on seven u.n. buildings. the timing of all of this is significant, earlier this year palestine became a member of the international criminal court. the chief prosecutor has launched a preliminary examination, a process to decide whether to launch a formal investigation, and in the next few days she'll have more evidence to shift through, as palestinian diplomats are expected to hand over a batch of documents. and coming up violence against black churches. i'll talk to a civil rights
7:28 pm
leader who witnessed that violence alongside dr. king.
7:29 pm
7:30 pm
the tragedy at the emanual ame church in south carolina is by far the deadliest attack on an american religious institution in recent memory. president obama will be traveling to south carolina to offer the eulogy for the pastor of the church. it's a the latest in a history of attacks in what has been a sanctuary for african americans. so for many african americans, especially those in the south. >> we keep in memory of the pastor -- >> reporter: this feels all too familiar. the attack reopens a searingly painful wound in u.s. history. >> active shooter, multiple people down. >> reporter: the campaign of terror against black churches the violence it goes back centuries. it started during slavery, when it was forbidden for blacks to
7:31 pm
organize for anything including worship. if a church was discovered, it was simply burned to the ground. but the churches and the congresses survived. they were not only houses of prayer and worship, but the roots of black political power, and by the 1960s, they were the organizational engines of the civil rights month. white supremacists saw them as a threat and attacked again and again. >> dynamite exploded on saungd-- a sunday morning. >> reporter: in 1963 members of a violent splinter group that was part of the ku klux klan bombed the church in alabama. four young girls were killed. but in the wake any civil rights movement grow stronger. >> what might of these little girls, every negro who refuses to go down to try to register to
7:32 pm
vote participated in that act. [ cheers and applause ] >> what murdered these four girls, the apathy and complacency of many negro who will sit down on their stools and do nothing, and not engage in free protest to get rid of this civil system. >> we are joined by chairman of the southern christian leadership board. he joins us from atlanta. robert, good to have you back on the program. good to spend some time with you again. look i wanted you here because of what you and so many others of you went through as freedom riders in the 60s, 61 in general, but in particular what happened in may -- i believe it was may 20th right?
7:33 pm
1961, in a black church. and because of that i haven't heard you on this, what is your reaction to what happened at emanual ame last week? >> first of all this represents something that has been brewing for a long time. and it's important to put it into perspective. this person did not act alone. although, this person did do the shooting, but it's clear that it came out of a culture of hate. and a culture that did not recognize and respect black people african americans as human beings, but in order to do that heinous act, that person had to also diminish his own humanity. >> yeah. yeah. >> simultaneously because that person became a weapon so it's
7:34 pm
so much of using the weapon but that person became a weapon. >> yeah. >> and when people become weapons, it means that they have no sensitivity to others as human beings. >> briefly, because i know it is a long and involved story, but i need folks to understand what happened. what happened to you and the other freedom riders riply street downtown montgomery to hear dr. king on may 20th of 1961? >> absolutely. we were attacked at the bus station there in montgomery alabama. >> three cracked ribs for you, right? >> and we regrouped at the mass meeting. it was already planned that we would have a meeting that night at the church. and as i was in that church and they were turning over cars and
7:35 pm
burning them and they threw bricks into the stained glass windows of the church and all of a sudden, i realized that was the same church that was bombed earlier. so we were already in a bombed church, that had a history of bombing. and we didn't know what would happen. so when martin luther king spoke he gave us confidence that he had to stand fast and be steadfast in our approach. one of the remarkable things that happened that night, was that there were some black cab drivers who were organizing to come and rescue us and martin luther king got a group of ministers that walked through that mob and persuaded the cab drivers not to come and then walked back through the mob. i was standing on the steps of the church when it happened, and i was shocked and surprised to see him go out there through
7:36 pm
that mob but more shocked to see him come back unscathed. >> how does this country at this moment -- and think about this year, avoid doing what it so often does in moments like this? kind of divide along its own interests? be they social commercial or political interests. how does this country not fall back on old patterns moving forward? >> well, first of all we have to have the unity among the leadership. and that's the thing that we're doing now, moving forward together with the other leaders, because we must have a single purpose, and when you see that kind of gathering, and that kind of coalition, and it doesn't come all at once but it has to be built. it has to be on solid ground. then we can move forward for change. in that march on washington was a good example of how all of the
7:37 pm
leaders eventually came together and agreed on that march, and that march pushed us forward in terms of the progress that was made, and ever since that happened, year after year following that we saw major clangs in the civil rights movement through legislation and acts that were put -- >> yeah. >> -- put by the congress and voted on. >> well, it sounds -- >> -- the civil rights bill and the voter's right act. >> reverend as always it's great to talk to you. chairman of the southern christian leadership conference board from atlanta. thank you again. >> thank you. the supreme court is keeping up the suspense with just days left in its term the justices have yet to issue decisions on who major cases, one on same-sex marriage and the other on the affordable care act. today they handed down decisions
7:38 pm
on raisin farming and hotel guest records. >> the law is designed to stabilize the raisin market. farmers have to give over a percentage of their crop every year to the department of agriculture for free. one year 47% of the crop went to the department of agriculture, another year 30%. the government would send it overseas, give it to the school lunch program. if they made money, they would give some money back to the farmers. but bun farmer in california did not one it was fair and refused to give the government a percentage of his raisin crop. the government fined him nearly $700,000. he went to the supreme court. he said they have to pay me. it's a unreasonable to take my crop without giving me money for it. and the court agreed in an 8-1
7:39 pm
decision saying the government must forgive the fine and pay the horns for their raisins. the other case was also out of california involving hotel owners in los angeles. they have to keep very detailed records on the guests who check him. name address, license plate, make of their car, and police could search for those records at anytime. authorities said it was necessary to try to crack down on drug deals and prostitution. but the hotel owners argue that this violates the fourth amendment right guarantee of no unreasonable search and seizures. and the court 5-4 agreed. the more liberal justices arguing that the police need to get a warrant before they search these hotel registries. the two big decisions we're waiting for on same-sex marriage and the affordable care act, still waiting to hear from the court on those. the next decision day this
7:40 pm
thursday. a chinese delegation rived in washington for strategic and economic talks with the united states. the talks come at a time of increasing tensions over cyber security trade, and china's influence in asia. >> reporter: when u.s. defense secretary met recently with chinese general, the two promised to work together on disaster relief counter piracy and peace-keeping missions. but they also disagree on china's efforts to restrict air and sea travel in what is recognized as international territory in the south china see. the americans also expressed concerns concerns at china's land reclamation project. >> translator: as the biggest economy in asia china has the obligations, responsible if i and capability to provide better public security service.
7:41 pm
>> reporter: even as beijing says it is about to finish that project, the obama administration is calling it a bad idea. >> nothing has changed about our view of these destabilizing activities there in the south china sea, and i think -- and i suspect that this will be an issue that comes up -- in fact i know it will come up next week. >> secretary of state john kerry will host the dialogue here in washington on june 23rd and 24th, the u.s.'s concerns about china's efforts to explanned its military efforts in the south pacific are sure to dominate the talks, but the political and economic positions are also on the agenda. among the big problems cyber security, unnamed u.s. officials blame beijing supported hackers for recent attacks on u.s. government servers. u.s. firms complain about
7:42 pm
restrictions of doing business in china, and washington still accuses beijing of manipulating the value of the currency in china. >> china is creating the facts in terms of the institutions it is setting up the role that it's taking on and in a way that means that a lot of these conversations have to be done effectively, and the tone of them increasingly reflects that. >> the challenge is to ensure that beijing takes its concerns seriously, while not putting on so much pressure that it loses access and influence of its own. >> greece and its creditors held emergency talks in brussels today. athens could default on its debt at the end of the month. in athens this evening clashes between rival groups of
7:43 pm
protesters, some want to remain with the euro others are opposed to austerity measures. if there is no deal this week greece may have view options left. >> reporter: the perfect way to start the day. it seemed greece's prime minister had a lot to grin about. this was a man with a plan to get his country that next chunk of bailout cash it desperately needs. first his foreign minister turned up 45 minutes late and greece's creditors said they couldn't accept the country's proposals yet because they had not been given enough time to digest them. the president put it as positively as he could. >> we consider it a step in a positive direction, so i think it's also an opportunity to get the deal this week. >> reporter: two people at that press conference but christine
7:44 pm
lagarde stayed behind the scenes the boss of the imf, one of those greece has to pay. at the last meeting on thursday she kept out of site though officials were keen to play down her no show. as evening fell the euro zone leaders arrived. the cameras were waiting, but while they catch up over dinner they won't be able to toast any lasting deal. this is about showing solidarity being slightly bullish, convincing the world the euro zone is strong. dissuading speculators from pulling out of greece. a heat wave is blamed for the deaths of hundreds of people in pakistan. at least 400 people have died. temperatures rose to 113 degrees fahrenheit. frequent power outages are making the situation worse. the government has imposed a state of emergency at all
7:45 pm
hospitals and increased parts of medical supply. and parts of the u.s. are simmering as well in this charleston south carolina the heat index was well in to the 100s. kevin is here with more. >> that's right. we'll start with the severe storms first of all. take a look at the radar and satellite. notice the complex that has been moving over the great lakes. i'm going to show you what has been happening specifically in parts of michigan. i want to take you to portland michigan it has not yet been confirmed if this was a tornado or not, but we did see considerable wind damage here and five people needed to be rescued out of this particular town because of the damage as you can see here. we're looking at tornado warnings still in effect. but i want to take you back to this morning when that same
7:46 pm
complex was pushing over parts of the dakotas. we saw over 200 wind damage rarts in that region. one was reported at 122 miles an hour. in iowa we saw 95 miles an hour and here we are looking at tornado warnings in effect and expect those to continue through the evening. the other big story is the heat going on across the southeast. some of that heat has come down because we have been seeing some cloud and rain showers come through. so for savanna you are down to 80 day, but we were looking at heat indexes of about 107 degrees. tomorrow no break in the heat we'll see charlotte at 100, and unfortunately on sunday a 4 year old died in a car because of hypothermia.
7:47 pm
>> we get those. >> we do. >> it's unfortunate. merge crews are fights wildfires in california right now. including one east of los angeles. that fire has caused $5 million in damage. firefighters are also working to control a smaller fire burning in southern california and two near lake tahoe and the see area nevadas. coming out in cuba. gay rights activists get support from an unexpected ally. plus genetically modified mosquitos, is it a way to get rid of the insects.
7:48 pm
7:49 pm
entertaining. talk to al jazeera. only on al jazeera america. an al jazeera journalist is now out at custody in germany. he walked out of the justice
7:50 pm
center in berlin after being held for two days. he was arrested while on his way to qatar. he was convicted and sentenced in absentia on charges he allegedly tortured a lawyer, but they decided there was no validity in the extradition request. >> i extend my thanks and appreciation to the honest honorable judges of germany. and i appreciate your support. >> well, demonstrators have been gathering outside of the building where he was being held, demanding his release. al jazeera rejects all charges against him, and says it is pleased this mistake has been rectified. cuba has been conservative when it comes to same-sex marriage. yet attitudes towards lbgt rights are beginning to change. >> reporter: hundreds of cubans
7:51 pm
dance to a conga beat wave therrian bow flag and declare their same-sex love at an annual parade in havana. >> translator: we have been together for 14 years. i give you my life heart, and love before god and before all forever. >> reporter: leading the way for gay rights is raul castro's daughter. she has become a strong advocate. >> translator: independently of the fact that not everybody is in an agreement with the law for the rights of the lbgf community, this will not create a split. it will generate an eye delone call enrichment of the cuban society. >> reporter: for decades homosexuality in cuba was criminalized. some were forced into work camps. but beginning in the late 1990s,
7:52 pm
the state began softening its stance. removing provisions that aloud people to arrest people for being gay. >> translator: i would be proud to see an improvement in the gay community behavior in every way. >> reporter: at his job, this artist acknowledges that times are changing in his home country for gays lesbians and transsexuals. >> translator: thanks to movies and documentaries that people have seen people are seeing us in a different view of light. >> reporter: havana based filmmaker, a gay cuban says he has chosen art as a way to shine a light on the struggle. >> translator: i have been very surprised lately as how organized everything is. >> reporter: his provocative retelling of a classic cuban play explored the internal strife in the family of a gay
7:53 pm
man who finally revealed his sexually. >> translator: because i am gay, i have friends that are gay, and i have felt a lot of pain and seen a lot of situations which have been seen as repulsive. >> reporter: activists admit there is a still a long way to go but there is no protection in other sectors of society such as housing education. >> translator: there will have to be a lot of knowledge, cultural social and visual to be able to accept something. we're still very behind in that aspect. >> reporter: as relations thaw between the u.s. and cuba jean carlo and others are optimistic that it could lead to a climate of tolerance and acceptance. and for a look at what is coming up john siegenthaler is
7:54 pm
here. >> hi, tony coming up tonight at 8:00, the debate over the confederate flag following wednesday's killing of nine black church members by a white gunmen. we'll talk about the flag's history, where it came from how it has been used over the past 150 years. also growing unease over the word gentrification in charleston. many see it as a class divide. how the demographics changed in charleston in recent years. plus one year later, what the texas, mexico boarder is like after a thousand national guard troops were ordered there to stop illegal immigration. >> they are going to find a way to get across it's big money for the cartels and drug traf iblgers. >> not everyone believes the deployment was a good thing. also a view of cuba most have never seen how a
7:55 pm
lithuanian was granted access to capture the beauty of the tropical paradise. >> john appreciate it. winnipeg canada is trying to combat one of the worst mosquito outbreaks. they have sprayed the bug with a potentially car generic pesticide. now they want to find a safer method. >> reporter: winnipeg, mosquito heaven. >> they are so bad, we're building a screened in gazebo this year. >> it's an awesome city but the mosquitos did drive us up. >> reporter: with heaven rains and clay soil it is called the north american capitol of that buzzing pest. >> there will be tons just tons. >> reporter: it's not just a knew sense, the mosquito is the
7:56 pm
world's deadliest animal killing 600,000 people each year with malaria, and another 25,000 with den ji fever, and here it's west nile. >> i'm encouraging residents to help fight the bite. >> reporter: they hold press conferences that make front page headlines. >> the priority is larvaciding. we'll spray local areas where an insecticide where they land on it and die. >> reporter: or they can spray a controversial pesticide that is said to could cause cancer. so they are looking for new ways
7:57 pm
to ban initial the bug. some have embraced the bug, they call it the manitoban air force, and this is the provincial bird. >> they are a necessary evil. >> reporter: steven occasionally terminated them the old-fashioned way, but he has come up with a technology that causes the males to be stale. >> it's a biological control method it doesn't use these chemicals that we are worried about, so it has all of the benefits of control without the old risks. >> reporter: with an up coming meeting, will he write the next chapter in the ongoing saga.
7:58 pm
that's all of our time. thanks for being with us. john siegenthaler is back in just a couple of moments. we'll see you back here tomorrow at 7:00 pm eastern. ♪
7:59 pm
8:00 pm
hi everyone this is al jazeera america. i'm john siegenthaler. banner battle. >> this is a moment in which we could say that that flag while an integral part of our past does not represent the future of our great state. >> the charge to take down the confederate flag gains momentum. is it a symbol of heritage or hate? beyond the word. >> it's not just a matter of -- it not being polite to say [ censor bleep ] in public that's not the