tv America Tonight Al Jazeera October 9, 2015 10:00pm-10:31pm EDT
thanks for watching. "america tonight" is up next. i'll see you in an hour. >> on "america tonight," the crack down on immigration. >> i was born here blessed to be a citizen. for me to look at them and see that they're the ones destroying my country, it is hard for me right now. >> can what started in kansas city as a simple idea turn into a national solution. also tonight.
>> we were very adamant about the fact that we were being attacked, that our race was going to be killed off the face of the earth, that there was a white genocide. >> "america tonight's" christof putzel, is hate music a inspiration? >> thank you for joining us, i'm adam may sitting in for joie chen tonight. when dylann roof killed black church goers in south carolina, what was his motivation? racist music, christof putzel goes inside, now reaching more people than ever before. >> reporter: in july a group
of white supremacists gather in the south carolina capital to protest the removal of the confederate flag. >> this flag has flown for generations and all of a sudden they are taking it down so we see it as an assault of white heritage. >> just weeks earlier 2 29-year-old dylann roof killed nine in the emanuel church. roof's attack and this really are bringing into light, the group's shadows, active in forms. a form of music known as white power. ♪ ♪ ♪ >> this is me on stage. >> christian's entire life once resolved around racist music.
>> this was me going to dachau concentration camp. >> you went dressed as a skin head? >> yes. white american youth and final solution. >> white band has nothing racists have it all, we will get strunger when we hear the call. not very subtle. >> and 3,000 people would come hear me sing those lirks and lyd would get violent. >> that was your job. >> my job was to incite people, to market this ideology to them. >> what was its specifically about the music that you found so appealing? >> it spoke to me. it reached inside of me. it made my blood boil and it gave me reasons to understand why unemployment was high in my neighborhood. it gave me reasons to understand why crime was higher in my
neighborhood. >> when you heard about the shooting in south carolina were you surprised that dloorn listenedylann rooflistened to t? >> no. it's the gateway drug into that movement. >> until he started listening to that white power stuff. before the killings, roof even wrote an online manifesto, saying he felt awakened by the music. that he once wrote about in his music. >> that our race was going to be killed off the face of the earth that there was a white genocide. >> roof is not the first mass shooter who may have been incited into violence. in august 2012 wade miecialg page walkemichael pagewalked ind murdered. he was a musician playing in the
band definite hate. aaron flannagan last stayed page's background. >> he just immersed himself in the scene completely. he played in all kinds of bands in north carolina in southern california. >> reporter: page's band definite hate, advocated shooting nonwhites, saying they were an infestation, bent on killing the white race. >> the smoousk like any kind of messaging, resultings in calls to action. you have some bands like the angry aryans, or the angry boot boys, who are very much telling, go out and commit violence. >> resistance records and magazines. >> just like plain stream music, white power music had its own producers. many of the biggest white power bands sold theirs records
through resistance records, advertising itself as the label of white resistance. >> what they set out to do is use resistance records as the predominant vehicle to attract youth to the skin head movement. >> it was a recruitment tool? >> absolutely 1,000 percent. >> online file sharing has taken its toll on record sales, with the white power scene becoming less visible in the early 2000s, many felt it wab becominwasbecoming less effecti. >> less obsolete as a recruiting tool? it's made white power music better faster cheaper. >> nora flannagan, now a teacher she spent years tracking down
white exprem siss fo supremacis. >> i would honestly rather a kid who felt this way come to school in a swastika. so i would know. >> like at a daily stormer and storm front have allowed thousands of users, to connect with others who their their ideology and of course their taste in music. so now you have all different kinds of generas, thrash or death metal and rock 'n' roll. >> you think that helps appealing to a wider net of young people? >> that was the whole purpose of it yeah. >> jeff scoop is the commander of the national socialist movement. an outgrowth of the american nazi party of the 1950s. scoop is also the ceo of white power record label nsm 88.
88 is neonazi shorthand for heil hitler. >> on your website it says we do not ambassadors any violence or terrorism. but at the same time you sell music by wade michael page. even with that you would say you
still don't condone any type of violence? >> no why don't. i stand by our statement that's on the website that we don't advocate any sort of violence or terrorism. >> you sell music from bands like bully boys who have songs like jig runs. whiskey balls, battle flags. hit and run, we have got gigaboos on the run. they fear the setting sun. would you say that song is advocating violence against black americans? >> i sai it' say it's freedom of expression. no win's advocating going out
and necessarily doing those kind of things. >> but wade michael page did, he went out and he killed six people. >> to say that the music made him do that, no, i think that's ridiculous. that's like saying if i watched a violent tv show i'm going to go out and reenact what i saw in the tv show. >> do you feel for the victims? >> i -- i -- any time there's a loss of human life it's a negative thing. it's not something 38 dwell on. i don'i dwell on.they're not ofs really -- not -- it's a tough question. >> you said they weren't my race, does that make it harder for you to empathize to them, you think? >> obviously the loss of life is a bad thing and it's a tragedy. i think i'll leave it at that. i'm not attending any funerals. i'm not going to go that far.
>> for christian, it was music that led him to embrace hate but in the end it was music that turned him away from it. in 1994 he opened a error store carrying a lot of white power albums but it was customers looking for mainstream music that opened his eyes. >> i had conversations for the first time with black people or with jewish people or same sex couple or gay people, i couldn't justify my hatred. >> still he remains haunted by the seeds of hate he once planted. the hate he feels responsible for, 20 years later. >> the thoughts, music i put into the world, it still lives on in some websites. that's the dark legacy that i've left behind and the one that i struggle with the most. >> remorseful, he launched an organization, life after hate,
to help others escape the white power movement. >> it gives them an outlet for their angst. >> he has a rapt audience. since september 11th, white national extremists have killed more people in the u.s. than any foreign groups combined. the department of homeland security feels it's the biggest group yet. >> do you think it will happen again? >> absolutely, absolutely. my goal is to educate people before tragedy happens rather than answering after the fact. >> christof putzel, al jazeera. >> up next, hiding in plain sight. behind tinsel town's glittering facade is a major environmental threat brewing. and later, immigration, innovation, could a small idea turn into a big national solution?
and thoughts on "america tonight's" website now, drugging dementia, why are 40 nursing homes rated five stars by medicare giving dementia patients psychotics at five times the national average? finder out more at aljazeera.com/americatonight. going on, not just in this country, but around the world. getting the news from the people who are affected. >> people need to demand reform... >> ali velshi on target weeknights 10:30p et
>> in our fast-forward segment tonight, hidden in plain sight. there are more than 3,000 oil wells scattered across south los angeles. many of them are near homes. residents say these oil rigs are now making them sick. "america tonight" michael okwu traveled to the city of los angeles to investigate those
claims and to find out where there's a larger environmental threat. >> reporter: los angeles has one of the largest concentrations of petroleum in the world. and pumping oil is part of the backdrop of living in l.a. sometimes the drilling is behind the scenes. no office workers in this building, it's actually disguising an oil rig. and so is this one down the street. many of the more than 3,000 oil wells in l.a. county are hiding in plain sight. like this building on a busy viet in soutstreet on south l.a. 16-year-old binion livers in one of those units. we asked him about the neighbor. >> they don't really know where it's coming from. >> this is one of at least 17
oil sites in the city of los angeles dangerously close to schools homes and churches according to a recent study by the community health councils. many are in low income neighborhoods. "america tonight" visited this one, a mile from murphy, where we met watchdog richard packers. >> do all these oil drilling sites have the same standards in place? >> absolutely not. the oil sites outside the beverly hills oil field they are enclosed, they have protections that have not been afforded to south l.a. communities. as you can see this drill site is wide open, there's not monitoring here. >> reporter: despite 250 complaints many health related to government agencies the oil site remained open until four epa inspectors fell ill and experienced severe headaches during inspection and that's where this story takes another
turn. it appears this site and nearly all the other ones in l.a. haven't been subjected to an environmental impact report in nearly 30 years. >> well, fast-forward now to trouble in the water. a review by california state officials found that there were major problems with the oversight of many of l.a.'s oil wells. they say these problems were caused by routine failures such as failing to ensure the wells were properly inspected or that they met the requirements of federal law that includes the safe water drinking act. that act is meant to ensure the quality of america's drinking water. coming up, a different way to deal with undocumented immigrants. in kansas city, police reach out, rather than crack down. an innovative program that could be a model for rest of the nation.
>> welcome back. in many parts of the country the debate over undocumented immigrants is often about house to get rid of them. that used to be the case in kansas city, missouri but not any more. day laborers, many of them from mexico once swarmed city streets upsetting residents and that's when an enterprising police officer, coupled with citizens, came up with something, chris
burrbury came covers the story. >> math thomasick, patrols the area in an unmarked pickup truck. undocumented immigrants come to this part of the city looking for work. >> imagine you have 100 to 150 guys on the corner standing there looking for work for eight hours a day. not all of them were interested in working. they were interested drinking and language out and selling drugs. >> when you started out here were you kind of a hard ass? >> yes, yes. i mean, yeah. >> a former narcotics officer, thomasic got assigned to this part of town whether the immigrant population of kansas city was exploding. hundreds of day laborers nearly all undocumented would hang out
in this parking lot hoping to bargain for cheap labor. >> people literally passed out on the sidewalks. we had all those guys standing there and no restroom facilities. i got at least two different called from hysterical elderly dreants saying there was elderld man was showering in their backyard with their hose. it was a mess. >> the family that owns this cafe got fed up with the petty crime. >> hi there, how are you? >> ashley rule who took over from her grandfather said some of the day laborers would retaliate when they called the cops. >> lots of bums, trash everywhere, just a lot of graffiti, and destruction of property, i would say the most. when i replaced the windows four years ago there were at least eight bullet holes coming through. >> when you have that kind of
disorder.go in and establish order. >> zero tolerance. >> zero tolerance. any drinking in the public, any public urination you would go to jail. >> how many arrests would you make? >> eight, ten, 12. i arrested the same guy ten times in the same day. >> immigration and customs enforcement known as ice, hauled off undocumented immigrants and deported them. but the zero tolerance idea got zero in the way of lasting results. >> did it change that negative behavior, no. >> in fact crack downs alienated the region's undocumented honest day laborers, and made them even more fearful of police afraid to even talk to them. hector gonzalez was one of those who used to hang out on the street looking for work.
>> when they ask you for something you scared you don't answer nothing right. it makes you to worry about you know the police. >> okay hector. >> what was the relationship between the police and the immigrant community? >> well, there was no relationship. >> reporter: linda callne a long time community activist said the get tough approach backfired. because so many migrant workers come from countries where police are not trusted. >> immigrants particularly those coming from the third world country the police are the enemy. the police are the people shaking you down. the police are the people kidnapping your kids. >> by now matt was under more pressure from his bosses to clean up the neighborhood. zero tolerance had not worked. he turned to linda the for help. >> he turned ome to say, what the hell to we do? >> she suggested a center where day laborers could wait for work
off the street. >> he said duhh, of course this makes sense. >> the west side community action network, known as cann, sponsors this operation. now new arrivals had a place to do their laundry, take a shower, use the bathroom. a familiar figure our lady of guadalupe welcomed the faithful. >> some of our guys are homeless. if you need to find a job you need to have clean clothes and be presentable for the boss. so this allows them to do that. >> this comes in handy? >> it sure does. >> officer thomasic, who has a tiny offers here, immediately noticed the ones who stopped in and the ones who didn't. that helped him in his police work. >> if i'm giving you a place to use the restroom, but you still use the streets, that tells me
something in deconstructing the mob. >> officer thomasic noticed something different in himself too. >> things got a lot easier really quick after that. >> in return for a safe place to congregate, the laborers are expected to pitch in on the days they're not hired. cooking lunch for the others, tending to public gardens. cleaning up. hosme came to the united states illegally more than 40 years ago, he says they have protected me and there is no better feeling. soon thomasic got a bilingual partner. chato vill villalobos. >> i was born here blessed to be a citizen and for me to look at
them to say those are the ones who are destroying my country it's hard for me to do that right now. >> for his part, matt thomasic took spanish classes and learned beyond the language. >> a vast majority of them are here because there is no alternative. >> they need to work. >> they need to work, they can't in their home land and i respect that. i got to feed my family, going to do what it takes. >> reporter: the new relationship with the men has paid off. what kind of change have you noticed? >> a significance, there aren't people hanging out in the middle of the streets drinking, urinating on themselves. just a better place for people to be around. >> thomasic and villalobos say, because of their work with the men immigrants throughout the neighborhood who once feared the police now approach them, tipping them off to possible crimes.
have you been able to solve crimes because you do have trust of some folks here that you didn't have before? >> i've been able to solve four homicides because of this approach. not because i'm a super-cop but because of the relationships and the trust that i have amongst the people that live here work here go to school here have businesses here. >> now officer thomasic is convinced his old hard ass approach never made sense in such an immigrant community. these days he sees himself more like dirty harry and more like andy of pla of mayberry. >> andy, he's one of us. >> so the debate about undocumented immigrants rages, one corner of kansas city has adopted an old fashioned approach out of the american
midwest. give newcomers a little respect and dignity and they may respond in kind. chris bury, al jazeera, kansas city, missouri. >> and that is "america tonight." be sure to tell us what you think at aljazeera.com/americatonight. you can also talk to us on twitter or facebook page and be sure to come back. we'll have more of "america tonight" tomorrow. it's not always pretty... but it's real. and we show you like no-one else can. this is our american story. this is america tonight. al jazeera america gives you the total news experience anytime, anywhere. more on every screen. digital, mobile, social. visit aljazeera.com. follow @ajam on twitter.
and like aljazeera america on facebook for more stories, more access, more conversations. so you don't just stay on top of the news, go deeper and get more perspectives on every issue. al jazeera america. >> i'm ali velshi. "on target" tonight, the cost of free speech. like i.t. or not there are limits to how you can safely express yourself in today's world. plus, race to the moon. private entrepreneurs picking up where nasa's apollo program left off. for americans tree speech is sacrosanct and it's guaranteed under the law in most countries in the west. but that doesn't marine that desi