tv Democracy Now LINKTV May 24, 2018 8:00am-9:01am PDT
05/24/18 05/24/18 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from pacifica, this is democracy now! >> we want people to be respectful of the national anthem. if anyone is on the field and disrespectful to the anthem of the flag, there would be a fine the the league against team. amy: the nfl capitulates to president trump, issuing new rules amending allll players on the e field must ststand for the natitional anthem in a move to d the on-field protests against
racism and police brutality. just hours afterer the nfl announcement, the sports world was j jolted when the video was released showing basketball star sterling brown being tased by police in milwaukee over a parking violation. we will speak to sportswriter dave zirin. we will do the latest from the big island of hawaii where lava continues to spread from the kilauea volcano. " downing filmale -- a stutunning film about childhd sesexual abubuse we will get the latest.
>> an excellent coach. amy: all of that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. north korea has repeated its threat to cancel a planned summit between its leader kim jong-un and president trump, scheduled for june 1 12 in singapore, citing statements from vice president mike pence it called ignorant and stupid. on monday, pence repeated the trump administration's talking point that north korea could end up like libya if it doesn't abandon its nuclear weapons -- a reference to the u.s.-led intervention in 2011 that led to the overthrow of leader moammar gaddafi, who was dragged through the streets and publicly killed by rebels. in response, a top north korean official said wednesday -- "whether the u.s. will meet us at a meeting room or encounter us at a nuclear-to-nuclear showdown is entirely dependent upon the decision of the u.s." at the white house, president trump was noncommittal when
asked wednesday whether the june 12 summit was still on.. pres. trump: we're going to see on singapore. it could very well happepen, but whatever it is, we will know next week about singapore. and if we go, i think will be a great thing for north korea. amy: on thursday, north korea invited foreign journalists to observe as it demolished its nuclear weapons test site. many observers believe the site was already damaged by multiple nuclear tests and had become unusable. a white house official said wednesday that president trump's senior adviser and son-in-law jared d kushner has been granted permanent security clearance allowing him to view highly classified documents. for over a year, the fbi refused to grant kushner permanent clearance after he failed to report over 100 foreign contacts on his initial application, which he has since revised three times. meanwhile, reports emergrged tht kushner met with special counsel mueller's investigators for a
second time in april, answering questions over a seven hour period. meanwhile, the white house says it will hold a bipartisan meeting today to brief house and senate leaders on classified information about the russia investigation after it holds a separate meeting for republicans only. the concession came after democratic leaders blasted the white house for politicizing intelligence surrounding news that the fbi used a confidential informant to investigate whether foreign governments had infiltrateted trump's campaign ahead of the 2016 election. in the first meeti, , initiallly the only such meetining scheduld fofor today,y, the white house d top p intelligigence and justice department officials will brief house intelligence chair devin nunes and house oversisight char trey gowdy. afterwards, a group of lawmakers known as the gang of eight, including top democrats, will be briefed in a separate meeting. president trump hahas claimed withouout evidence thahat the fi spied on his campaign, calling the purported scandal bigger than watergate.
a federal court has ruled that president donald trump cannot block people from following his twitter account, @realdonaldtrump. in a 75-page decision, district judge naomi buchwald ruled that trump's twitter feed constitutes a public form, and that his decision to block dozens of critical voices was unconstitutional. to hear one of those voices he blocked, you can go to democracynow.org. in india, police opened fire on thousands of environmental protesters opposing the expansion of a copper smelter in the southern city thoothukudi, killing 12 people. tuesday's deadly crackdown came as protesters torched cars and a local administrator's office after an environmental regulator said the copper smelter was exceeding pollution limits and fouling nearby air and water, sickening residents, and threatening fisheries. in 2013, a gas release from the smelter left hundreds of nearby residents struggling to breathe, with nausea and throat problems. the copper smelter's owner has temporarily shut the plant for
maintenance, but wants to reopen the smelter at double its capacity in june. in ireland campaigners are , making their final pitches ahead of a referendum friday that would roll back the republic's eighth amendment, which outlaws almost all abortions. ahead of the vote, pro-choice activists in dublin wore red-and-white outfits evoking margaret atwood's the handmaid's tale. this is pro-choice campaigner katie donoghue. the 3000 women a year to be held have those rights here in ireland safely with the support of their doctors and their peers, without the expense of traveling to england and that's, that is involved, really, having to face e exiledo another country to make a basic choice about your body. amy: back in the u.s., the senate is poised to overhaul its secretive process for reporting sexual harassment in congress, with critics saying the changes don't go far enough toward holding lawmakers accountable.
the senate bill would bar lawmakers from using taxpayer money to settle lawsuits claiming harassment, but taxpayerers would still be forcd to pay for settlements involving gender discrimination. both the senate bill and a separate measure passed by the house earlier this year would end mandatory counseling and mediatioion periods that requiud anyone claiming sexual harassment or discrimination to wait months before settling their cases. the american civil liberties union has filed suit against the state of ohio, charging that republican lawmakers unconstitutionally drew up the state's redistricting map to keep their party in office. the aclu said in a statement that ohio's oddly-shaped and winding congressional districts are among the "most egregious examples of partisan gerrymandering in modern history." the lawsuit comes on the heels of similar challenges to republican-drawn maps in other states, including north carolina, , texas, and pennsylvania. a new policy adapted by the national football league on wednesday will fine players who kneel on the field during the national anthem. the vote was made by league
members without involvement from the nfl players association. it was the owners who decided. this is national football league commissioner roger goodell. >> all 32 clubs want toto make sure during the moment of the anthem and the flag, that that is a very important moment to , as clubsas a league personally, and to our country. and that is a moment we want to make sure it is done in a very respectful fashion. and that is something that was very shortly held in the room. amy: roger goodell said players who don't want to stand for the anthem can remain in the locker room without penalty. this comes after colin kaepernick helped spark a movement against racism and police brutality across the nfl after he refused to stand during the 2016 season for the national anthem before an nfl game. we'll have more on the national anthem and the nfl later in the broadcast with dave zirin. the milwaukee police department is apologized to nba player
sterling brown after a newly released police body cam video showed brown's violent arrest on january 26. brown is african-american and a 22-year-old rookie player on the milwaukee bucks basketball team. the body-cam footage confirms brown was not combative as police initially claimed, when a group of officers tackled him to the ground and electrocuted him with a taser. brown was then arrested, but charges were later dropped. brown has since said he plans to file a lawsuit, writing in a statement -- "what should have been a simple parking ticket turned into an attempt at police intimidation, followed by unlawful use of physical force, including being handcuffed and tased and then unlawfully booked. this experience with the milwaukee police department has forced me to stand up and tell my story so that i can help prevent these injustices from happening in the future." -- in rio bravo, texas commit woman was killed in the head. video of the aftermath of the killing that was posted on facebook shows border patrol
agents sealing off the scene and detaining at least two people. the agents claimed the officer fired inin self-defense after officers were attacked by blunt objects, they said. analysis found customs and border patrol officers were involved in nearly 100 fatal encounters since 2003 with the u.s. paying out more than $60 million to setettle lawsuits alleging wrongful death and other illegal behavior by border guards. meanwhile, mexican journalist emilio gutierrez soto and his son oscar have been granted a new asylum hearing in texas, which could see them released from an immigration detention center where they've been held since december. gutierrez first sought asylum in the united states in 2008 after receiving death threats for reporting on alleged corruption in the mexican military. mexico is one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists, with at least four media workers killed so far this year alone. to see our full jailhouse interview with gutierrez, you can go to dedemocracynow.org. former cia operative and cuban exile luis posada carriles died
wednesday inin miami, florida at the age of 90. posada carriles is best known as the suspected mastermind of the 1976 bombing of a cubana airline jet. for decades, the u.s. refused demands by cuba and venezuela for posada carriles' extradition to face terrorism charges. this is peter kornbluh, director of the national security archive, speaking about luis posada carriles on d democracy now! years ago. >> in october 1976, according to cia and fbi declassifieied secrt docucuments, he was onone of tho masterminds of one of the most heinous acts of international terrorism in the westetern here- 73 men,re, killingng women, and children on october 6, 19 76. he has a long history beyond that. he went on to orchestrate a series of hotel bombings in cuba and the late 1990's. he was arrested in panama in november 2000 with a car full of
d4 explosives and dynamite in an effort to blow it could all caps joe during an american summit. the list goes on and on and on. amy: and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. nermeen: and i'm nermeen shaikh. welcome to all of our listeners and viewers from around the country and around the world. the national football league has announced it will fine teams if players refuse to stand for the national anthem before games. but under the new rules, players will be allowed to stay in the locker room during the anthem. over the past two seasons, dozens of players have knelt during the anthem to protest police shootings of unarmed black men. the on-field protests began in august 2016 when quarterback colin kaepernick refused to stand for the anthem to protest racism and police brutality. at the time, kaepernick said --
"i am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color." the protest would eventually cost kaepernick his job -- he has essentially been blacklisted from the league -- but the protest spread throughout the nfl. the protests also attracted the attention of president trump am a who repeatedly attacked the protesting players. pres. trump: wouldn't you love to see one of these nfl owners when someone disrespects our flag to say, get that son of a bitch off the field right now? he's fired! he's fired! amy: president trump has praised the nfl's new rule saying the league is "doing the right thing." meanwhile, filmmaker michael moore tweeted -- "oh nfl! i love you! what better time to curtail free speech than during the national anthem! usa! usa!! usa!!! back in the ussa!!" just hours after the nfl announced d the new rule, the sports world wasas jolted by the rerelease of draramatic videdeo
showinpolicece officers inin milwaukekee tasering nba player sterling brown, who plays for the milwaukee bucks. brown, who is african-american, was approached by police after he parked his car across two handicap spaces in front of a walgreens. the body cam footage confirms brown was not combative as the police initially claimed. the video included the moment officers tased him. clerk taser! taser! taser! nermeen: sterling brown was cited for a parking violation but not charged following his arrest. in a statement sterling brown said -- "situations like mine and worse happen every day in the black community. being a voice and a face for people who won't be heard and don't have the same platform as i have is a responsibility i take seriously. i am speaking for dontre hamilton of milwaukee, laquan mcdonald of chicago, stephon
clark of sacramento, eric garner of new york, and the list goes on. these people aren't able to speak anymore because of unjust actions by those who are supposed to 'serve and protect' the people." amy: to talk more about these two stories, we are joined in washington, d.c., by dave zirin, sports editor for the nation magazine. he is also the host of edge of sports. his new piece is titled, "the real reason nfl owners want to punish players for protestining during the anthem." what is that real reason, dave? >> the real reason is about controlling labor in controlling the nfl workforce. i think what colin kaepernick started in the nfl represented the greatest threat to institutional power in the national football league and that institutional power is happened 25wer that years ago. they were telling nfl owners, we will not behave the way you want us to behave. we're going to show fans what we have going on between our years, not just between our pad and we're going to stand up for what
we believe is right, mainly a movement against police violence and a movement against racial inequity. and that is something i think scare the pants off nfl owners. there are no black nfl owners. all except one are white billionaires. this is a moment and a fellow owners were saying, wait a minute, you can't just treat us as future concussion victims. we're going to stand up and say what we believe and we're going to use our platform to do so. and this is the reaction. this is the backlash. these are the conservative nfl owners saying, we're going to quash your free speech, your constitutional rights, your voice in the name of quelling the labor upsurge in the national football league. nermeen: i want to ask about president trump's role in this controversy. this is president trump speaking to "fox and friends" this morning. pres. trump: i don't think people should be stayiying in locker rooms, but itit is good. you have to stand proudly for the national anthem.
you shouldld not be playingng. maybe you should not be in the country. you have to stand proudly for the national anthem. ththe nfl owners did the right thing. nermeen: that is president trump this morning saying if you don't stand for the national anthem, you should not be in the country. dave zirin, your response? amy: love it or leave it, dave. notompulsory patriotism is patriotism, it is dictatorship. it is disgusting. it speaks far more to trump's character than the carriage of the national football league who are using that space in the anthem to speak about the gap between the promises of the national anthem, the promises of this country, and the lived experiences of black americans in this country. that is a discussion donald trump does not want to have. that is what this is about. when has this president said one word about police were telling or racism? if anything, he fans the flames of that kind of oppression. he does not stand against them or even want to have a dialogue
about them. this has definitely patriotism and every thing to do with the british racism we as seen from donald trump going back 30, 40 years in his personal life and his professional life. amy: let's go to an article published monday by bleacher report id tells revealed heart of grievance colin kaeaepernic's fileled against the nfl, claimig owners colluded with each other to keep him out of the league for good. "according to mike florio of pro football talk, internal team documents show 'teams viewed kaepernick as being good enough not simply to be employed by an nfl team, but to be a starting quarterback for an nfl team.'" >> absolutely. the collusion case that colin kaepernick is building i think continues to gain strength. this is one of the things that absolutely punctures a hole in the other half of what the nfl owners are trying to do. with this anthem issue, there tried to operate with a very big stick that also a little bit of sugar at the same time. the tiniest possible caret in a huge stick.
carrot ist possible giving them basically the cost of one field goal kicker for to do say they are supporting social justice causes among the group of nfl players. but there other nfl players who are saying, wait a minute, this has no validity whatsoever that you support us as long as colin kaepernick and as long as his former teammate eric read our colluded against an cap out of the league is cicely because they protested against the anthem and helped lead this movement. colin kaepernick has been very strong from day one saying he is not going to stand up for a flag that oppresses black people in this country. he has every right to do that and yet donald trump does not think so and the nfl does not think so and this only proves yet again the nfl -- it doesn't justin for not for long, that is the old joke because of the injury rate in the league -- but it also stands for the n no freedom league. nermeen: what about the players
union, the players association? how have they responded to this? thehis is why think with nfl did yesterday is basically put out a fire with kerosene. the nfl players association is absolutely incensed because they were not brought to the negotiating table to speak about this issue. they put out a blistering statement about what the nfl and the owners are trying to do with this issue. it is really rare you get something that incendiary from the nfl players association. they are furious. nfl owners will say they have the right to change the anthem policy unilaterally, but that does not change the fact it is also written into the collective bargaining agreement that players have the right to use that space as they would like. in addition to the nfl players association, several journalists , myself included, have heard from players who has said that they did not think of protesting during the anthem or they were largely done with doing that until the nfl came out with what
they said. now there is talk about huge groups of players staying in the locker room during the anthem as a form of protest. this would not be a form of protest that would be against police brutality or racial toquity, but a labor protest tell nfl owners, you cannot control of unilaterally without having us at the bargaining table. amy: it was not hours after the nfl announcement that the milwaukee police department apologized to basketball player, nba player sterling brown, after newly released police body cam video showed brown's violent arrest. it was last january, video released yesterday. brown is african-american, 22-year-old rookie player. the body cam footage confirms he combative as police initially said, before police tackled him to the ground and electrocuted him with a taser.
brown was arrested but charges were later dropped. >> one of the things we need to talk about is sterling brown's statement after the release of the video.o. sterling brown, only 22 years old, one thing he realizes is cicely because he is an athlete, people will notice what happened to him. this is something that happens the black community every day, every week and he is saying it should not happen just because of an athlete that we notice but since i do have this platform, let's talk about eric garner and stephane clark a and look one mcdonald. this is in such stark contrast to the football league. his team the milwaukee bucks issued their own statement, which i thought was remarkable. i've never seen a major process towards team say something like this. they said "the abuse and intimidation that sterling experienced at the hands of milwaukee police was shameful and inexcusable." they go on to excoriate the
milwaukee police and speak about racism in their community. i've never seen a team do that before from the top level. it only sticks to the gap between how the nba has managed this growing black lives matter movement and the way it intersected with their players and the national football league, which has chosen to clamp down and try to crush any kind of free was among players to speak to these issues. amy: while the president has framed this as protesting the flag, many have talked abobout t flag andng up for the what it represents. >> absolutely. the original kneeling gesture actually started because colin kaepernick was first sitting during the anthem, then he had a conversatition witith a former l player in ring named nate boyer. nate said, if you kneel during the anthem, it will look respectful. it will show your protesting but also look respectful. i think what we see is anybody
who protests, it is going to be twisted in a what you don't want it to be protested in a way to serve an ideological agenda coming from the hard right wing. i think similarly, this nfl season, instead of weekly counting's like they were doing on espn of which players were kneeling or raising their fists during the anthem, they would keep a running telly week to week, now he will be who remains in the locker room. the nfl did not solve the problem with this incoherent policy. what they've done instead is spur more anger. amy: finally, davave, you'rere e author of the book with michael bennet, your co-author, of his book "things that make white people a comfortable." what has happened with the football star? >> tackle been it is currently --ing an absolutely absurd michael bennet is currently facing a absolutely trumped up charge that the get him as much
as tenures behind bars because they say 15 months ago he bumped into a security guard who was in a wheelchair while rushing onto the field to congratulate his brother after the super bowl. the formal investigation against michael did not even begin until nine months later in houston after michael bennet spoke about bringing charges against las vegas police because of a very similar incident to what happened to sterling brown. he wasn't tased, but michael bennet was detained and put on his stomach and a weapon was put to the back of his head while he was handcuffed in lost vegas. it was public about that houston police attempted to try to investigate what occurred at the super bowl at that .9 months before and now 15 months beforehand. these are ridiculous charges. asxpect them to be treated ridiculous as they are in the core system m of houston and i n guarantee michael bennet will not be slowed down by this one bit. he is an outspoken athlete. there's a long tradition in this country of trying to silence
outspoken black athletes, but michael bennet will not be silenced. amy: dave zirin, thank you for being with us sports editor for , the nation magazine. we will link to your piece "the real reason nfl owners want to punish players for protesting during the anthem." co-author of the book "things that make white people uncomfortable." when we come back, we go to hawaii, kilauea, the lava, the laze, what is happening. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. nermeen: we now turn to hawaii's big island, where the kilauea volcano is continuing to erupt, spewing plumes of ash and lava. workers are rushing to shut down a nearby geothermal power plant to prevent the uncontrollable release of toxic gases from the site. lava is flowing increasingly close to the puna geothermal venture plant, or pgv, which
provides 25% of the big island's energy. hawawaii officials held a press conference on tutuesday to prove an update. thisis is governor david ige. >> we've been monitoring what is pvgening at pbg -- constantly watching the law of flow in a threat to the pgv plan. tremendous progress has been made in the last 24 hours. we do believeks114, the l last welcome is pluggeged and we feel we're at a safe place now. nermeen: pgv came online in 1989 amid controversy over its location on what some residents say is sacred land. many native hawaiians believe the volcano is home to pele, the goddess of fire. others say that though geothermal energy is renewable, the plant poses risks to the health of residents and the environment.
amy: meanwhile, kilauea's 19-day eruption is showing no sign of easing, with repeated explosions at its summit and fountains of lava up to 160 feet from giant fissures on its side. hawaii's civil defense agency warned motorists, boaters and beachgoers to beware of toxic clouds of so-called "laze" -- a combination of lava and haze -- which formed as two streams of hot lava poured into sea water. this is hawaii resident ikaika marzo. >> the lava reached the e oceant 1111:00 last n night. creating safir as it in hydrochloric acid -- sulfuric acid and hydrochloric ethic. all of thosese living south of e flflow will haveve that plume, e gases will be getting close to where they are at. that is not a good sign. amy: the lava has destroyed at least 44 homes and 2000 people have been evacuated from the area. for more we go to honolulu, , where we're joined by brittany lyte, a reporter for honolulu civil beat.
her recent article is titled, "workers scramble to seal wells at geothermal plant threatened by lava." welcome to democracy now! start off by talking about this geothermal plant, the threat to it, whether it looks like the lava might not it at this moment. and also, you went to big island. what is the scene there? >> the big risk that officials are concerned about is what will happen if the lava does inundate the plant site. the lava has reached the property, but not run over the wells. if the lava does run over the wells, it will sort of be this great experiment. this is never happened before, in the other geothermal plant there has not been lava that has done this before. so there are a lot of unknowns. officials are saying things are safe as far as they can see. there monitoring it very, very closely. but what could happen is the lava could trigger a release of
deadly gases, namely a gas that it in smallinhale levels, it can be irritable to your lungs, to your eyes, but if you do breathe it in even at a s at high-level it can kill you. right now officials are saying it is safe. nermeen: what about the situation, brittany lyte, of the workers who are at the plant? >> the workers at the plant have been forced to evacuate the tomises over two days due high levels of toxic gas in the air. currently, there at the site working. they have quenched the majority of these wells. one of the wells the were having difficulty quenching, so they apply this mud like substance to it in order to prevent any interaction if the lava does reach the well.
quenching involves basically just dumping really cold water down the well in order to depressurized it. workers are there now. things are safe to work on. but the issue is, what if the lava creeps closer? 300lava is currently 200 to meters from these wells and moving very slowly closer. amy: these are amazing, apocalyptic scenes of this red lava that is flowing through big island. can you talk about the history of some of the tension between some of the residents of hawaii, especially indigenenous people,, gv, explain the spiritual reasons some of the residents have opposed d the planan the geothermal plant? >> the geothermal plant is actually a pretty substantial part of the state's effort to
reduce its reliability on fossil fuels. there are lots of people who support this type of energy. on the other hand, you have made a full alliance and other people -- you have native hawaiians and other people not supportive of the plant because they think it is not necessarily a good idea to be tapping the energy of the ofpele,energy because the goddess of the volcano, they think she would not approve of this. there is that factor. the other factor is there are some known health risks associated with geothermal plants when the plant becomes compromised. for a situation lilike this whee a is encroaching the property, what could happen if there is an uncontrolled release of gas, this is a concern for people. there is a neighborhood that is right up against the plant
prproperty. people who live e there are concerned about what the potential health -- amy: the geothermal threat is not the only threat. last particles, lava haze is affecting hawaii after the lava flowed into the civic ocean. is there a possibility of massive evacuationon of big islaland? >> right now therere is not. ththlava is acactually affectina very smallll ption of ththe island. most of the island is open for tourism, totally safe. but this very concentrated area where the lava is, there are some people who have evacuated. officials are not calling for an evacuation due to the lava being at the geothermal plant at this time. there closely monitoring the situation and that could change. but at this time, that is not an issue. i was over there this weekend. the lava is putting on an incredible show. i think as much as homeowners
and residents of that area are distraught over the loss of property, the lava is now destroyed700 acres, 5050 structures. as much as that is s causing heartache e an alarm, i thinink people arere also sort of cheerg the lava on. ,he lava is the product of pele the goddess of the volcano, and people think she is sosort of taking over the land and really creating new land. this is destruction, but through the destruction is the birth of this new land, creating new topography. an interesting piece in the guardian. brittany lyte, they give for being with us, reporter for the honolulu civil beat. we will link to "workers scramble to seal wells at geothermal plant threatened by lava." this is democracy now! when we come back, a disturbing,
amy: this version by the hawaiian indigenous ukulele player. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with nermeen shaikh. nermeen: as the #metoo movement has inspired women around the world to come forward with their stories of sexual harassment, abuse and assault, we turn now , to a remarkable new film that is a narrative memoir about a woman's s own recking with childhd d sexual abuse. is directed by the womawhwho periencethe abus jennifer fox. it preereres m 26 6 onbo. this iththe fil's trailer. >> the sto you arebout to see isrue.
as far ai know. when a was a chi, , i wa obssed w wh changi myself. i don't even rembeber hoi used to be. >> the sto she wrote in english css. where did you find i >> what it matterss s whatt sa. >> t are special people. > excellent coach >> the most beautill woman i had ever met. >> i need to talk abouitit wit someone who washere. he me rember. why can't i rememr? >> you were unusual child. >> strong body, strong mds. i found some picturesrorom thatummer. >> you know i have a lotff regrets. >> y talked out the
relationip, but this is a grn n man. > this is important to me. >> what are you so angry? >> why areou not ary? >> i nd to know what happene it is mife! premier at the sundan from festiva the lm starsnclude lra dern, son ritte alan bernstei and comn. the ardian clingt a unning sual ase dramand e motherf all #moooo movies. we're joineby jennir fox, directorf "the te." thiss a narrave memoiabout her own chihood sexl abuse that premier may 20 x on
hbo. is is ju in his downi filmjennifer th fact -- mean, sunusual beuse it ia narrave dratic fm played actors, but foexample,auraern is playinyou, jenfer fox,nd yogreatly e yourwn name it. talk aut the ming of ts fi. keemy name a prisely to be ableo stand up anday this a true ory. suffer everybo who saysexual use doesot look kehis or memory ds not fution lik is, i casay, no,his is true becse itt happened to me. nermeen: the film originated at the f film -- thehe film shows h the story you written as a child shortly following the traumatic episodes you then document. the teacher who read your story , "ife time it was written this is true, it is a travesty.
isn't you are so well-adjusted, it can't be true." could you talk about the response you received then and how you reflected on that so many years later when you went back to this episode? >> i think even as a child, i was writing a story in order to make sense of an event that was very complicated, very nuanced and confusing to me. however, i did not see it as dramatic as a child. for me, it was my first relationship. and here was a story i wrote -- it was 1973. to be fair to the teacher and to everyone around me, they simply were not looking for child sexual abuse back then. amy: tell us your story. >> what happened was i was a precocious kid, but very young looking. i was 13, but probably looked like a nine-year-old boy. hips.asts, no
i went to my teacher's home for the summer. we had a riding camp. there she introduced me to her coach, very famous athlete. i became a s student as well. , thingsall, progress and i began to stay overnight at his house on the weekends. amy: there a chilling moment in the film that happens early on when -- well, laura dern, she is playing you, is flipping through an old photo album and s she las on a picture of herself, of yourself, at 13. her mother corrects her. she says, that is you at 15. here you are at 13. and the difference is unbelievable. you say, i was so little. and in the film, you start with an older actress and you switch
them to a child. explain. >> the film is for a much about memory and the stories we tell ourselves to survive. so what i was really looking at is how we all as teenagers think we can tolerate anything and we are strong and tough, we think we are more mature. as a filmmaker, i was trying to show that i thought i i was capable of handling anything. but in fact, i was a little kid. nermeen: one of the many things, the truly exceptional qualities of this film, it documents in cinematic form what is almost impossible to document, and that is the coming into being of unconscious memory. quote as you said "the unraveling of denial." how did the making of the film allow this unraveling of denial to take place and your recognition because you always recalled the event, but you did
not recall it as traumatic? how does that occur to you? how did that recognition come to you? >> frankly, my whole life until i was 45, i call this a relationship. and it wasn't until i was making a film about women around the world, documentary, that i began to see and hear stories that sounded justst like this relationship i had, except for they were sexual abuse. so it had a paradigm that i recognized and suddenly, there was a light in my head that just went, "oh, my god, i have only been telling myself one half of the story and the other half of the story is actually quite darker." i could i was younger, not tolerate that memory. so it is that that i forgot it and i just preference the good. i think memory is very, very protective. we have to allow it to be so because sometimes, in fact, you
need to protect your self from trauma that is intolerable. amy: let me turn to a a clip frm your film "the tale." this is a scene between jennifer fox played by laura dern and her .other played by ellen burstyn oh. hey. >> good morning. >>hanks, m. look for you.ood >> trashed. oh, my god, i am lockeinin. cacan't tuturnt off f ght now. and mrs. gk bill paid extra attenonon to becae ththatas a big developer baback then? >> no.
it didn't have anything to do witht. it is because you are in a usual child andou knew w to tal to adults. >> i w taking out the first time you met him, en he ca hereo pick m up. >> will ner forgethatay. mymy antenna went off. amy: saying "my antenna went off." explain what happened when this bill came to pick you up. of course, this also goes to the awareness of mothers, fathers, parents, family members. what happened on that day? >> this wawas already in the fal after i had known he and mrs.villa all summer. we set up that he was going to take me to an event with his college students full stuff you brought my mom flowers and my dad a gift.
she had never met him, actually. inside herself was like, what is going on here? this is what happens when boys are courting girls. amy: they bring gifts to their parents. >> exactly. and yet she was so taken aback that she did not doubt me from leaving the house with him. in fact, we went on thihis date, but she did tell my father. and my father still did not really get what was going on. he was like, you're being hysterical. this is a great man. you should be happy he is giving all of this attention to your daughter. remember, again, it was 1973 and parents were not thinking child sexual abuse. so it took a while for it to trickle down in my family. meanwhile, the affair was going onon. amy: i w went to be clear, your great man. this is a he is a famous guy. athlete.
>> a coach. nermeen: -- amy: he has a wing named after him at university? >> yes. amy: you have so bravely named yourself will step yet chosen not to out him. why? >> for me, this whole film and story is not about "getting" a person, who, by the way, is old and at the end of his life, so it not mean much. it is really about change in a conversation about child sexual abuse and memory and showing just how complicated and messy and nuanced it is and taking it out of this taboo fox that we have had it in where the perpetrator is evil and the child is this really white child. instead, perpetrators are esteemed people and the community. they seem like nice man. they're not visible. and kids often actually can feel
love for someone who hurts them. that is what makes it so complicated. nermeen: i want to go back to something you are saying earlier , in trauma is intolerable other words, one can only been what one can bear. he also spoke about a documentary on women you're working on on how i gave you a kind of epiphany. when you are speaking to thesese women, d did you get a sense tht they had a similar experience, in other words, theyey also had repressed the worst part of their memories about sexual abuse? >> everyone was different. some of them were highly, highly traumatized. it really shadowed their entire life. and other people were like me and you would never know. they were highly functioning. abuse affects everyone differently. and they deal with it differently. but frankly, there are many,
many women and men walking around the you would never know have a history of child sexual abuse because most of us are not crying in the corner. amy: so you grow up and in this film "the tale" laura dern, a filmic or herself, looking at women who are talking about sexual abuse, is also coming to terms with her mother f finding this essay and it is bringing so much her and you're investigating back what actually took place. and you have a partner will step that partner is played by common. "his is a clip from "the tale when jennifer fox, played by laura dern, has aargument with her supportive fian played common. >> this was important to manand i'm y toto fure ououwhy, ok echo these people we important toe.e. whoho a thesese people? i saw letter from wowoman. whwho s that? -- thatt was myiding wamymy riding teacher.
i'm yiying tfiguguret out.t. >> wtey wanto find h when you e e the ctimim? i'm not saying tt -- >> i don't ne y you oanyoyone else to call a aictim, ok now ? we need to stop this now. amy: that is from his astounding film called "the tale was good that is going to play on hbo startiting this weekend. now i want to turn to a q&a after a recent screening of the film. this is common, the actor, reflecting on his role will stop >> one thing liked abobout martin, he w not just backin do. you codd not juskick him overbubut heared, , t he tri totoive herverything -- you know, ve jennifer ererythi he could that he thought cou be healing tarard heandd
supporngng towar her i oughght was i iortant t see a man inhat way because, you kn,, oioiously, the other side of men we s i in thfilmlm is nototood. it is sothing -- when you hee somebody gng through sometngng your li, wheer it is hihisngg a traraumic a as or even sothing le, yoyou just try toigigure t how yocann support them, how you can be the best. one thg that mtin said whicgoes bac to at i am sayingbout leaing morend mo, it iike it i certain point heaiaid, man, have y seen therastst? as lov o ones,e cacan't alway do -- c can't givehem m al the hehealintheyey m need. they may neeprofessialal -- most ofs do. i thk that discussion is memethin t that was graful th m martiput thatut t the, bunow evev more, especiall yoknowow, ming from ee coununity of cor, we d't talk about mentawellness
weon'talklk about therapy. a lot of men don't do it, either. the facthahat wead that aspect , i really love i loved that he was a loving humaman being and trying to support and did not know everything, but he tried to give it his all. amy: that is common raising two points about this film. one is to show there is another kind of man outside of the might sayser, you rapist. you have chosen not to say rapist at this point. you were 13, he was 40. and the other is the issue of therapy. and he is talking about in communities of color. >> two things, first of all, language matters. i want to point out the word rapist versus sexual abuse. sexual abuse has a certain paradigm that takes time, about the manipulation of an adult and a child. it is not using violence to get the end means. and that is why don't use the
word rape. i think we have to be very specific with language here. in terms of the good man, i think we really do need men like martin whoever -- who actually represents my true boyfriend, now my husband, who can tolerate a woman going through something very, very difficult and not fly off the handle and not leave her, and that is the character common is playing. in the film, jennifer, laura me, says, i don't want to do there be. that is just at the moment. in fact, she is using this investigation to try to figure out something in her life like, how and why this happened. she always remembered it, but, why me? in reality, i've done a lot of therapy and i believe in therapy and ththink it is s really helpl for many, many things to help support your life, so i am a big believer in therapy. nermeen: the film is a
testament, not only and most obviously to your courage, but also your remarkable ingenuity and artistry in envisioning and creating the experience of the past living alongside the present as you do with your adult self, speaking with your child self. one of the things you said earlier is that you are trying to give in the film, which he did successfully, a more complex understanding of child sexual abuse, both because the child often feels love and attachment for her abuser and also that perpetrators cannot simply be viewed as these wearable, honestly identifiable, terrible man. given that come it is more striking that u.s. a 13-year-old made the decision to stop seeing this person and you told him explicitly, that is a highly
extraordinarily unusual decision for the victim or survivor of child sexual abuse to do. how did you do that? >> frankly, in retrospect, despite the fact that i felt invisible in my family and there was lots of chaos -- i am one of five kids -- i come from a a vey loving family y with a lot of support. and probably it is that i had so much support and strength to say, ok, this has gone too far. i am going to say no. i also knew after ii broke up with him and during that if i raise my little finger, mymy friends would have prosecuted. the irony is, i was denying to my parent and lying through my teeth that anything was going on. and go into go to appoint you make in the film with the kind of warning or statement on the film that says that at no point
was there a child in a sexuxual interaction with the actor, even between bill and your child self. .xplain how you found this isabel was the young actress. >> there was an enormous amount of precautions to make sure she was not traumatized by the experience. in fact, bill, played by amazingly by jason ritter who is an externa actor, working with a body double who was 22, and days after, filmed standing up behind a bed, and her ahir is splayed out with hairspray and basically, i was just rolling through a nonsexual cues with her like act like a beast, act like you're being chase by doc, act like you're eating something sour. she was just talking to me now
is intercut with phil magic of at thef jason looking body double. amy: her mother was in the room? >> her mother, therapist, screen actors guild, the rest of the cast watching and listening to us. nermeen: the gift you have given to her audience is to know the past is important, but it is not necessarily defining. >> absolutely. we all live with past and present. it is what you make of it. it is how you see the events that happen to you and how you choose to survive. amy: we're going to do part two and posted on democracynow.org. jennifer fox is a writer and director of "the tale," a narrative memoir about her own reckoning with childhood sexual abuse. it premieres may 26 on hbo. that does it for our show. defliop.thday to mike
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