tv All In With Chris Hayes MSNBC June 24, 2013 8:00pm-9:01pm PDT
governor of texas. and i can't help thinking when i see this story tonight that this really is not ann richards' texas that's working on this. if she was in the governorship, there would be nothing to worry about on this kind of thing. >> well, but you know, it's interesting. you know, more than 20 years ago mom was elected governor. and her message was she wanted to open up government and invite the people in. and what i would say is more than a thousand people this weekend took her up on that offer. so that's -- this is her kind of democracy. and it's wonderful to see people actually fighting back and fighting back for what they they believe in, fighting back for women. >> ann richards' spirit lives in those halls. cecile richards, thanks for joining us tonight. >> thanks, lawrence. >> chris hayes is up next. good evening from new york. i'm chris hayes. and thank you for joining us. tonight on "all in" the trial of george zimmerman. charged with a second-degree murder of the florida teen trayvon martin has begun in florida. we'll have a full report on the
riveting opening arguments and possibly the worst and most awkward knock-knock joke ever told. also tonight, it might not surprise you to hear that supreme court justice clarence thomas really doesn't like affirmative action. you might be a bit taken aback by his concurrent opinion today in which he compares justifications for affirmative action to justifications for slavery. yes. he did that. plus, jon stewart is back on tv in egypt and his appearance on the egyptian version of the "daily show" is the awesomest thing i saw on the internet today. tonight we start with seat 17a on aeroflot's flight this morning bound from moscow to havana, cuba. at seat, 17a, was booked for edward snowden. the admitted nsa leaker. the man wanted by the united states government for violations of the espionage act. it has the doors of aeroflot flight su-150 closed and the
plane took off, edward snowden was not on board. a bunch of reporters were onboard. they all bought tickets when they heard snowden would be on the flight. he was not. all those reporters had a nice 12-hour flight to havana to which there was no booze and no scoop. right now, the most powerful government in the world is looking for edward snowden and right now no one can say for sure where he is. what we do know is that yesterday morning just two days after the united states filed a criminal complaint for edward snowden, charging him with among other things violations of the espionage act, edward snowden got on a plane and left hong kong. now, united states had requested that hong kong arrest snowden and hold him while courts processed an extradition request. the hong kong government's response was, well, possibly the most passive aggressive official government text in the history of written communication. it reads almost like a post-it note from your roommate left on the refrigerator. because the u.s. failed to provide the popper
proper documentation, there is no legal basis to restrict mr. snowden from leaving hong kong. in the most deliciously awkward part, meanwhile, the government has formally written to the u.s. government requesting clarifications on earlier reports about the hacking of computer systems in hong kong by u.s. government agencies. yikes. by the time that letter reached official hands, edward snowden had already fled to russia, specifically to moscow's airport, where a bevy of eager reporters gathered in order to greet him. there snowden reportedly met with the ecuadorian ambassador, ecuador of course the very same government that gave wikileaks founder julian assange asylum in its embassy in britain, and whose foreign minister confirmed today had received an asylum request from one edward snowden. that request was reportedly facilitated by wikileaks who now has a lawyer working with snowden, and whose founder julian assange has inserted himself into the story and spoke this morning to reporters on behalf of snowden about snowden's situation.
>> both are healthy and safe, and they are in contact with their legal team. i cannot give further information as to their whereabouts. >> let's be clear here. we have no idea where edward snowden is. his u.s. passport has been revoked. he does not have a russian visa. the russian government is acting as if he is in russia and the u.s. government is acting as if he is there as well. we have no pictures or videos. only the eyewitness account of a man who says he saw snowden on his flight from hong kong to moscow. in other words, edward snowden has disappeared under the watchful, one might even say all seeing eye, of the united states government. the question now is what russian authorities decide to do with him. under the intense pressure of u.s. government officials. >> we hope that the russian
government will look at all available options to return mr. snowden back to the u.s. to face justice for the crimes with which he's charged. >> we are working with them, or discussing with them, or rather expecting them to look at the options available to them, to expel mr. snowden back to the united states to face justice for the crimes with which he is charged. >> we have returned seven criminals that they requested for extradition from the united states over the last two years. so we really hope that the right choice will be made here. >> we're following all the appropriate local channels, and working with various other countries to make sure that rule of law is observed. >> one of the most wanted men in the world, edward snowden, and we do not know where he is. but what he does next, and the reason this is all so dramatic and riveting aside from the basic facts of the story, is what he does next is going to have a pretty big impact, possibly a massive overwhelming impact, on how his revelations
play out politically here at home. joining me now live from rio de janeiro, brazil is columnist for "the guardian" newspaper. glenn broke the edward snowden story in the guardian. my first question to you, as mr. snowden travels around the globe and his whereabouts are unknown, are you in contact with him still? >> i haven't been in contact with him since shortly before he left hong kong, so, no, i have not spoken with him. as he boarded the flight in hong kong. >> there was an article in the "south china morning post" today in which they replayed or reprinted part of an interview with edward snowden in which he basically tells them, he had taken his final job with booz allen hamilton as a contractor at that facility in hawaii with the explicit intention of essentially getting documents to then make public. i wonder what your reaction is to that and how much you think
his motivations in doing this should be amongst the points of discussion we're having as we watch this story unfold. >> i would think that far and away, the most significant point of the entire episode, where most of our focus ought to be, if not virtually all of it, is on what we have learned the united states government is doing in complete secrecy in constructing this massive spying apparatus that a secret federal court in 2011 said was both illegal and unconstitutional. and that top-level obama officials including james clapper went to congress and lied about when explicitly asked whether it was being directed at millions of americans. that's where the overwhelming bulk of our focus would be. as far as the specific revelation today in that newspaper that you referenced, it isn't surprising to any at all, when i interviewed mr. snowden he had said, remember, he has worked at the nsa since 2009. prior to that he worked at the
cia for 2 1/2 years. that he gradually came to see there was a lot of wrongdoing taking place that the american people weren't aware of and had decided rather long ago that he would take this course of action to inform his fellow citizens. and i think what he said in the interview today was essentially there was one last set of documents he thought he needed access to complete the picture to be able to present a clear and full picture to the american public about what the nsa was doing and for that reason went and got that last job through booz allen at the nsa facility in hawaii. >> glenn, here's my question to you. as someone who basically thinks the things that we have learned about the government through mr. snowden's leaks have been vital, i'm happy to know them, i'd much rather know them than not know them. i think there is some secret legal reasoning which has been revealed in the wake of it that has been an absolute and genuine improvement to our democratic conversation about our status and our self governance. i am worried, frankly, i am worried if he shows up on the
balcony of raul castro at some point in the next week, it will be as if everyone who has been championing the revelations has walked out on to a limb that they are now standing on in him with that is now going to be sawed-off behind them because now mr. snowden the whistle-blower is in the hands of someone like, say, castro, or someone else who people generally do not view as a beacon of openness. do you worry about that? do you recognize the political consequences and stakes in where he actually ends up? >> you know, let me say, i don't think anyone thinks cuba is his intended ultimate destination. i think much more likely is ecuador, which for all its very significant problems in its political system does have a democracy, does elect its president, who is widely popular among especially the majority of the nation who are poor people. let me say two things about that, chris. one is it doesn't matter what you think of edward snowden as an individual. i happen to think that what he did was quite noble and heroic and courageous.
people think quite reasonably that he should have chosen a different path. wherever you come out on that, and whether he ends up in the hands of castro or whomever, it doesn't really make a difference in terms of what you think about what we're learning about the u.s. government. i think it's critically important those two things remain distinct. the other issue that i think is vital is that we should ask why does mr. snowden feel a need to go and flee and run around the globe going to countries that he probably doesn't want to live in? the answer is because we've allowed our government to persecute whistleblowers. read the column by david carr in "the new york times" today. he says the war on the press that the u.s. government is waging is not a matter of hyperbole but math. whistleblowers have no chance in this country because of this persecution. that's the reason he's fleeing and seems to me more important as well. >> glenn greenwald from the guardian newspaper. thank you so much. appreciate it. >> thank you, chris. joining me, goldie taylor, contributor to msnbc and thegrio.com.
goldie, i want to talk to you. i've been watching all this unfold. i think the point i made to glenn which is basically whether i stand on this. >> sure. >> i think this country absolutely created this massive metastasizing government in the wake of 9/11. classification has gotten out of control. there are all kinds of things the government is doing they're not telling us about that we should know. at the same time, as i watched the personal drama of edward snowden unfold with a mix of fascination and trepidation, i do feel conflicted about, you know, an american citizen who is possibly giving things to foreign agents, although there is no proof or reporting to indicate that that is definitively happened. i just wonder as you watch this unfold, do you feel that way? how are you processing this? >> i think that there are a lot of us from the left and from the right and from all points in between who are, frankly, concerned about the patriot act, who are frankly concerned about nsa and what broad-sweeping powers it may or may not have. i think that there are genuine,
genuine concerns about that and that this has opened a global conversation about secrecy and surveillance around the world. at the same time, this story has been hugely problematic from the beginning. the initial reporting around this has been sloppy at best. i think what we deserve are the facts laid on the table so that everyone can decide for themselves what they expect or should expect from their government. >> i agree about the facts being laid on the table. part of the problem here, when we talk about the initial reporting that came out of the prism program, for example, and what exactly it is and how exactly it works. i mean, the issue that we're facing in all this, and i come on television every night to talk about this, we're talking about the trayvon martin trial, george zimmerman trial which we'll be talking about later. that was all open in court. we saw every word that was said. we're talking about the decision the supreme court issued today, we got to read the decisions. we talk about the affordable care act. we can read the congressional budget office. in this, it's like we're wait waiting around in this
dark room, drawing conclusions with little shafts of light that illuminate this or that thing, and it seems toxic to me, that this is the basic conditions under which we are operating. >> unfortunately, part of having a self-governing republic in this day and age means there are going to be some points of secrecy that, you know, help us to manage our resources and assets around the globe, that help us manage an entire intelligence community, which help us to manage an entire foreign affairs policy. you know, those kinds of things, you know, should be kept secret and, you know, but i agree with you, there are limits on those things. but when we're reporting about it, when we are advocacy journalists, and i do believe there is such a thing, then we have the duty to get the story right. to make sure that we check our facts against people who understand the technology that's being discussed. that people who understand, you know, these powerpoints that coming out that talk about what the p.r.i.s.m. program is and
what it isn't, that talk about what direct access is and what direct access is or isn't. when we put stories out like that, large stories, national stories, global stories, we ought to expect questions to ourselves. and we ought to be able to stand ready to answer those questions. unfortunately, this first story looked like it came out by lilo & stitch. >> here's the thing. on the first issue, right, what we are seeing now is the first, if you begin to unpack this, or twin to reveal, okay, there's some of this program is being called into the light. the mass collection of phone calls, i think we're pretty square on what that is and how it works. >> we are. >> when you go to court orders of the mass collection -- confirmation, that's classified. it's against the same laws edward snowden is accused of breaking, for anyone inside nsa to say, this is how prism works. yet that's precisely what we want. we want, i think as adult citizens, to know what our
government is doing within the bounds that does not completely expose sources and methods. >> i think therein lies our issue. what is the boundary of what is reasonable, and who gets to set that? is it glenn greenwald or is it edward snowden? >> the united states government? >> is it the people we elect to make those decisions for us? we ought to be making some of the decisions in the ballot box. anybody who voted for the patriot act, we ought to be looking at them re-evaluating and reaffirming this thing over and over again. so i think we do have some power and it's incumbent upon us to take that power. but do i trust glenn greenwald with that story? do i trust an edward snowden to make that assessment? i'm not sure i do knowing what i know and having seen what i seen and how this story played out. >> i will say this. i trust them to the extent that i trust knowing things rather than not knowing them. and so i agree. there's no definitive word said about what exactly these programs are and how they operate. i'm happy to know more now than i did a few weeks ago. msnbc contributor goldie taylor, thank you so much. >> thank you. all right. guess who justice clarence thomas compared to slave holders and segregationists today? me.
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to the ground and he let us all justice clarence thomas wants to burn affirmative action to the ground and he let us all know that today. and this is the way the trial of george zimmerman, the man accused of the second-degree murder of trayvon martin started this morning. >> good morning. >> good morning. >> [ bleep ] punks. these [ bleep ], they always get away. >> more on day one of the trial, coming up. y. there was this and this. she got a parking ticket... ♪ and she forgot to pay her credit card bill on time. good thing she's got the citi simplicity card. it doesn't charge late fees or a penalty rate. ever. as in never ever. now about that parking ticket. [ grunting ] [ male announcer ] the citi simplicity card is the only card that never has late fees, a penalty rate, or an annual fee, ever. go to citi.com/simplicity to apply.
the nation was waiting today on four big, huge decisions by the supreme court that will affect civil rights and social equality across every state in this land. from institutions of higher learning, to our most intimate partnerships. and of these four cases, we got one decision. which means we have to wait until at least tomorrow at 10:00 a.m., to find out whether the defense of marriage act is constitutional, whether the
same-sex marriage is constitutional, and whether the core of the voting rights act, the pillar of our civil rights architecture and self-governance will survive. we did find out the supreme court did not, did not take an opportunity to put the final dagger in affirmative action in higher education. affirmative action and higher education has survived for now. instead, the courts sent the case, fisher v. the university of texas back to a lower court for reconsideration. in that decision, we learned less about the future of affirmative action in this country than we did about the opinion of justice clarence thomas. clarence thomas has spent most of his adult life railing against affirmative action and decrying his own experience with it. this is the man who famously took his yale law school diploma and put a 15-cent sticker on it saying that's all it was worth because of the school's affirmative action enrollment policy. today thomas got a chance to absolutely unleash on race-based college admissions.
he wrote a humdinger of a concurring opinion that basically compares anyone who supports affirmative action with the worst racists and white supremacists in our history. "slave holders argue that slavery was a positive good that civilized blacks and elevated them in every dimension of life. a century later segregationists similarly asserted that segregation was not only benign, but good for black students. the university's professed food good intentions cannot excuse its outright racial discrimination any more than such intentions justified the now denounced arguments of slave holders and segregationists." so while today was not the day in which the supreme court killed off affirmative action higher education, it was the day in which one of the court's most conservative justices made it plainly clear how determined he is to end the practice. and keep in mind, he has allies both on this court, and as we reported here in the greater conservative legal movement. joining me to discuss, the director of education practice for the naacp legal defense fund.
damon, can i start with your reaction to the clarence thomas concurring opinion today which i really kind of read with my jaw on my desk in my office. >> right, well thanks for having me, chris. first of all, it's important to recognize that justice thomas' opinion was a concurring opinion. he wrote for himself, himself alone. he didn't have any other justices joining him. certainly not a majority of the court. one thing that really struck me was this. one of the core principles of the supreme court's decision in grutter versus mulligan from just a decade ago is that context matters. when you start comparing slavery and the jury legally mandated segregation, to affirmative action, that sounds like a pretty textbook acontextual to me. really comparing those types of systems and scenarios doesn't really make much logical sense, and it certainly doesn't make much sense, practical sense to americans. >> i could not agree more. to me, what's disturbing, though
thomas was writing for himself in a concurring opinion is the idea of, quote, a color blind constitution has been embraced in oral arguments and even in certain opinions by chief justice john roberts. it's embraced by a conservative legal movement that has been fighting to get these cases before the court. and we're seeing public opinion about affirmative action, support for it on the wane. all of it seems headed to a point in which people are really starting to equate any kind of racial consideration, even if it's to promote racial equality or diversity as in the case of the university of texas with the kind of racial considerations that we rightly abhor. >> right. those types of associations really don't make much sense. but we have to understand there is a much broader mission at play here. you see it playing out in side opinions, concurring opinions, what have you, but you also see it playing out in some of the rhetoric from the other side. we're hearing questions about, what is race anyway? why does any of this matter? they try to say, race doesn't matter. what they're really saying,
frankly, is the facts don't matter. we know the fact is abigail fisher would not have been admitted to u.t. austin regardless of her race. we know the fact matters u.t. has a much more modest plan, university of texas does, than even the michigan plan. that this court upheld. so what they're really trying to do is rewrite history. they're trying to rewrite history in order to rewrite the future. fortunately, the court, at least the majority of justices certainly did not take that step with justice thomas. >> the court did not kill off affirmative action, higher education. it remanded it down to the lower court, appellate court and said you need to apply strict scrutiny as your standard review. meaning you need to look really carefully at the arguments the university of texas is making in defense of using a racial consideration. what should we make of this? what is next for this case and the broader constitutional arguments around affirmative action? >> in some ways, chris, it's not much of a surprise. the court simply articulated a standard we all pretty much understood in the first place that simply said the lower court, perhaps, did not faithfully apply that standard.
we at the naacp legal defense and educational fund are quite confident with the clients that we represent, black student alliance at u.t. austin and also the university, itself, representing its own interests that the plan will actually satisfy the standard that the court articulated because in many ways it's not much different than what we assume to be in play. >> you're going to go back down to the fifth circuit, argue it and i'm confident you're going to win. damon hewitt from the naacp, thank you so much. >> thank you for having me. millions of undocumented workers pay social security taxes every week, and today, just a few hours ago in fact, the u.s. senate voted to confiscate that money. i'm not making that up. i'm going to explain this act. kids are like sponges. they soak up everything. especially when it comes to what you say and do. so lead by example and respect others.
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when i was 17 years old i had a summer job at bakery in new york city. in that bakery working alongside me were a bunch of guys from a province south of mexico city, called puebla. they worked the overnight shift. and sometimes i would stay up all night with them. i would help them with the baking, and they would help me get better at spanish. now all of these guys were in the country without permission. but because i worked with them, i learned something i hadn't known until i started this job, that all of them actually had social security numbers. the way it generally works in this country's vast gray labor market is that unauthorized immigrant workers use a social security number tied to a made-up name or one that belonged to someone else, a
relative or someone deceased. they enter the country under a temporary work visa. they can obtain a legal social security card and use that number even if they ended up overstaying visa. and despite all this banshee wailing from the likes of joe arpaio and rush limbaugh, it turns out because they have social security numbers, they're paying payroll taxes. they're paying into social security. in fact, according to the "washington post," in just 2007, the social security trust fund had received a net benefit of somewhere between $120 billion and $240 billion from unauthorized immigrants. now, i don't know where those guys i baked bread with at 17 are today. a bunch of them are probably back in mexico because we've seen a lot of net migration out of the country. the rest still here, and likely among the nation's 11 million person shadow workforce. one thing i do know is that they're almost certainly not collecting social security checks because unauthorized immigrants are ineligible for social security benefits though they're required to pay the same
taxes as the other workers. but if any of them were to become a citizen, they would have the opportunity to benefit from their actual work record. those who used a made up number or overstayed a visa can right now when they become legal show proof to the social security administration of their prior work record and have their own legal proper social security account credited with the wages they paid in. which, to me, seems perfectly fair and reasonable and obvious, really. they did pay in there. well, an hour ago, that changed a bit. senate closed a vote that put an end to that practice. senate voted to approve the new amended version of comprehensive immigration reform bill which includes the corker/holder amendment, a so-called border surge designed to win more republican votes. buried in this amendment is language that instructs the u.s. government to confiscate the social security taxes paid by all unauthorized workers between 2004 and 2014. even after they gain citizenship status.
doesn't matter. they paid in like everyone else. it's now ours and they don't get it back. and if you didn't know about this detail, i bet you some of the people voting for this bill didn't know about it, either. because everyone was all excited about getting close to 70 votes, about winning republican support and we shook hands before they spent much time looking at the details. which also included doubling the number of border patrol agents from 20,000 to 40,000. that means an agent for every 1,000 feet of the southern border. corker wants to also construct 700 miles of fencing, twice as much as authorized in the original version of the bill. not only that, the amendment changes the bill so border patrol agents can search vehicles within a reasonable distance of the southern border which is defined as 100 miles. which takes us up to mitt romney's beach front home in la jolla, california. better check that car in the driveway, mitt. a lot of the implementation of these border security measures
will almost certainly be contracted out to private companies which prompted senator patrick leahy to say this on the floor. >> the modification to the leahy amendment before us reads like a christmas wish list for halliburton. >> that's right. and get this. while we pour money, fencing, armed agents on to the border, while we gear it up with all sorts of high-tech surveillance activities. while we arm it and make sure it's one of the most militarized places in this country, the task force charged with oversight for this increasingly militarized stretch of our country will not have subpoena power. it's just a paper commission. now, it may be that the amendment with all its pork barrel spending and punitive measures is an acceptable price to pay for a path to citizenship for 11 million people, but let's not lose sight of what's happening here. every time republicans get a chance to, they are making this bill less humane, more expensive, and worse for our country. and this thing hasn't even hit the house yet.
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and a 30-tablet free trial. instead of #click3 today, i want to break format and present a #click1. the one awesomest thing on the internet today. something i clicked on over the week, before watching an episode of "vp" with my wife. and we were both just absolutely riveted and delighted. the name may not seem familiar to you, but it is a big deal in the middle east. he hosts a show out of cairo called "the program." fans will tell you it's like "the daily show." in fact, he is known as the jon stewart of the arab world, and like stewart, yusef uses satire to call out those in power. so much so he was issued an arrest warrant for allegedly insulting egyptian president mohamed morsi and the islamic faith. that prompted stewart to defend yusef on "the daily show." yusef later appearing as stewart's guest. well, last friday on "the
program", yusef began his show by introducing what he referred to as a captured foreign spy. take a look. >> ladies and gentlemen, jon stewart. [ speaking foreign language ] >> yes, that is the real jon stewart of america speaking arabic to the jon stewart of egypt in this studio audience telling them, please sit down, i'm a simple man who does not like to be fussed over. stewart is in the middle east directing a film called "rose water." the story of an iranian
journalist who was in prisoned while covering the presidential elections. the project brought stewart to cairo where he and his egyptian counterparts sat down and talked about everything from 9/11. yes, there were many jokes. in between the light banter emerged a serious and remarkable conversation about freedom and the right to satire in the arab world. >> if your regime is not strong enough to handle a joke, then you don't have a regime. because it is not -- you have to be able to handle anything. a joke is a joke. you may say that is an insult, and they say, you know, there's an expression, i don't know if you have it, adding insult to injury. yes, maybe it is an insult, but it is not an injury. a joke has never ridden a motorcycle into a crowd with a baton. a joke has never shot tear grass gas to a group of people in a park. it's just talk. >> what stewart does and what yusef does is more than just talk. that was evident throughout their discussion turned transcultural meditation.
>> in last week before you left, you were hosting bill o'reilly, our beloved bill o'reilly. >> yes, yes. >> and he told you, and i quote, oh, you're leaving, so why don't you, since you care too much about muslims and arabs, he's like, why don't you leave your place to a muslim and arab? >> yeah, yeah. >> why didn't you think of me? >> here's the thing i want to point out. it's not that, you know, defending muslims or defending jews or defending christians or defending what are the other ones? i don't like [ bleep ]. and so i try to speak out against [ bleep ], and isn't that all government is? it's we all get together and decide as a majority who the [ bleep ] are. that's all it is. government is always a lottery. you put your money down. it's a bet. i'm going to put down some money on this guy. in the hopes that he'll turn out to be something good.
>> full clip is 20 minutes long. if you have a chance, i urge you to watch the whole thing. the tv equivalent of watching an incredible high-level cross-cultural tennis match between two players at the absolute top of their game. also a reminder of just how universal comedy and satire is. by far the most awesome thing on the internet today. all right, next, the george zimmerman trial started today with an f bomb from the prosecution, a knock-knock joke from the defense, and later an apology from the defense over said knock-knock joke. that's coming up.
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today, almost 16 months after trayvon martin was shot and killed, opening statements began in sanford, florida, in the castate of florida versus george zimmerman. with great anticipation, msnbc was ready to broadcast live the prosecution's opening statement. >> good morning. >> good morning. >> [ bleep ] punks. these [ bleep ]. they always get away. those were the words in that grown man's mouth as he followed in the dark a 17-year-old boy who he didn't know. >> stark reminder of the alleged conditions under which trayvon martin lost his life on the night of february 26th, 2012. the prosecution says george zimmerman spotted martin as martin was on his way back to the neighborhood after having bought an arizona fruit drink and some skittles.
zimmerman says he tracked martin and followed him after immediately finding martin's presence suspicious. zimmerman called police, apparently ignored the dispatcher's advice to meet the police at the mailboxes in the neighborhood according to calls to be submitted by the prosecution. at the end of the subsequent encounter between zimmerman and martin, 17-year-old trayvon martin was dead. there is no dispute that george zimmerman is the man who shot him. the case hinges on whether george zimmerman acted in self-defense as he claims. zimmerman has not pleaded guilty. >> there was this defendant riding around in his car, not with candy, not with fruit juice but with a kell tech .9 millimeter semiautomatic pistol in a ready to fire position, meaning there was one live round in the chamber.
>> for its part, the defense to back up george zimmerman's not guilty plea, a few minutes into his opening, did this. >> knock-knock, who's there? george zimmerman. george zimmerman who? all right. good. you're on the jury. nothing? that's funny. after what you folks have been through the last two or three weeks. >> after later apologizing to any juror who might have been offended, the defense offered several refutations to what the prosecution might show with its evidence including the question of who is armed and who is not. >> if i've heard it once, i've heard it a thousand times that trayvon martin was unarmed. what the evidence will show you is that's not true. trayvon martin armed himself with the concrete sidewalk and used it to smash george zimmerman's head.
>> this is security camera footage of trayvon martin at a 7-eleven on the night of his death bringing his items to the cashier. this afternoon, the prosecution began establishing a foundation with its first witnesses, calling that cashier at the 7-eleven and the dispatcher who took george zimmerman's call. in a disclosure, before we proceed, george zimmerman sued nbc universal for defamation. the company strongly denied the allegation. joining me, craig melvin, who is covering the zimmerman trial for msnbc. craig, what was your takeaway from this big action-packed first day in which we finally got opening statements and even saw witnesses on the witness stand? >> you know what, chris? i would say it's probably just the sheer contrast between the two approaches to those opening statements. you played a clip there, a clip we've seen a lot of today. the state came out the gate, about 33 minutes. they started with using the words that george zimmerman used, words that we can't use on
our air. but there was a great deal of profanity used today. we had this date, and then they sat down, again, after about a half an hour, the defense gets up and they go for about 2 hours, 45 minutes. in addition to that knock-knock joke, the jurors were also subjected to a fair amount of looking at these detailed diagrams of that gated condo complex, and then there was a great deal of time spent looking at the timeline for that night. they took a lunch break then they came back. and the defense continued. so i would say just the juxtaposition between those two opening arguments, you mentioned judge nelson, tomorrow morning before the jury is brought in, we will hear judge nelson's ruling on whether the state will be allowed to bring in seven additional calls that zimmerman made to that nonemergency number. so, again, that will happen tomorrow morning at 8:30. then after that, the defense will continue calling additional witnesses. four today. we expect several more tomorrow,
chris. >> msnbc's craig melvin. thank you so much. >> thank you. joining me now is maya center for social inclusion. jeff dubin, founder of dubin research and consulting. michael eric dyson, professor of sociology at georgetown university. great to have you all here. josh, you worked on cases in florida, do jury selection consulting. so what do you want as the prosecution, and as the defense, on their first day, the chance to make the first impression, in a case like this. what do you want to establish with those jurors? >> the first thing you want to establish is the right tone. okay? and so much of being a great trial attorney is being able to establish a rapport with the jury. and i can tell you from the outset that i think the defense fumbled in a big way. i think that in a case where the
deceased family is sitting 10, 15 feet away from you, to tell a knock-knock joke in a case as serious and that has received the type of exposure that this case has received was a huge mistake. conversely, i think the prosecution hit a home run. i think they had the tone just right. i think that throughout their opening statement, they echoed the extreme nature of the case. >> so one of the things here legally, i just want to -- i know a bit about the law. my wife's a lawyer. i get some sort of osmosis about the law. but as a nonlawyer, if i'm sitting in that juror's box, right, it's an interesting case from a certain perspective because there's not a dispute about who shot who. a lot of times what you are trying to establish in a murder trial is was this a person who fired the gun? there's forensic evidence whether he did or not. there might be eyewitnesses. that is not the issue here, right? the issue here is what? it is self-defense. what does that mean legally?
>> well, legally, of course, the issue is whether or not george zimmerman had some reason to believe that he was in danger of being harmed seriously and, therefore, had the right to defend himself and in this case with deadly force. you know, i'm not an expert on florida law. i'm not going to pretend to be. it seems to me that's part of why you're hearing that opening you heard from the prosecution which i absolutely agree with josh was a home run, because what they were saying is they were painting a picture of a predator. not painting a picture of a guy who was afraid. and that is pivotal in a case that's a self-defense related case. >> i want to talk to you, michael, about how this file finally happening intertwines with all the attention it receives and what that kind of feedback loop between the courtroom and the attention it's getting outside looks like, right after we take this break. "and one of the most efficient trucking networks," "with safe, experienced drivers." "we work directly with manufacturers," "eliminating costly markups," "and buy directly from local farmers in every region of the country."
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michael eric dyson. we're talking about the first day of the george zimmerman trial. given the buildup there's been, given the intense attention we've all paid to this trial because of the just wrenching facts of the matter and the sociological implications for what it means about race and justice in this country. what was your reaction to the first day's arguments? >> you know, that's a great question. i see it as a father, too. i've got three kids. and i tell you, it devastates me to believe in this day and age, what i believe to be the cold-blooded murder of a young boy has to be adjudicated in such a fashion that it becomes nearly the complete opposite of the contested nature of that night. so now, you know, zimmerman is portrayed, and he deserves a trial and deserves his day in court. the reality is, you know, the construction of these young black kids, if the attempts to kind of demonize and portray this young man is somehow
abhorrent and somehow against the norm of the american society, what does that say about the millions of kids -- >> that's what i thought was so brilliant and effective of the prosecution's opening line, opening with that line, the reminder of the line from the tapes infamously about the judgment that emanated in that moment, in that one moment by george zimmerman -- >> as a racialized judgment. it's not a race neutral judgment. it wasn't just -- the blanking punks, and george zimmerman is a man who called the sanford police department 46 times to say there was some scary black person in the neighborhood. so there's also -- there's a pattern. >> the question here, i think, also is, it goes to how the jury is going to process all this. and there is, in jury selection, we know, tremendous racial effects in how, in jury composition, in how juries process this. particularly because our criminal law justice system is intensely racialized. and this case has been from the moment an intensely racialized case.
what is your experience in thinking that through as a jury consultant? >> you have to pay attention to a few things. be real about that people are prejudiced, people have biases. when you start with that proposition. my tact and my philosophy is always to try to get people, they all come in like this. get their guards down and get them to be comfortable about saying, yes, this is how i feel about this minority. here's how i feel about this issue. that's the challenge. as far as the group decision-making dynamic is concerned, look at the composition of this jury. you have five white people and one person. >> person of color. >> person of color. that makes the big difference. i've had cases that have nothing to do with race whatsoever. an accounting fraud case where it was an all black jury and it was one white man. and there was two white defendants. and we get a note in federal court in manhattan saying i feel like i'm being ganged up on because i'm white. that happens. the group decision making dynamic in florida in state court is even more compromised
and even trickier because there's a six-person jury here which is astounding to me that from the standpoint of this man's, you know, look, we can all have this feelings about he deserves not only his day in court, he deserves a fair trial and deserves not to be judged unless and until all the evidence is in. >> here's the point. people of color have been told we have to abide by that. we knew the murderers were out there. running around with reckless glee celebrating the fact he killed medgar evers. that's not that long ago. if paula deen can be excused because she is of that generation, imagine how many sit on juries who make decisions about the future of our children. you're right. >> the screening process presumably by a competent attorney to make sure that doesn't happen. >> it does matter if this one juror of color is black or latino. because the evidence implicifies. people who latino are just as
likely to have this against blacks as people who are white. it matters. >> we're doing this, of course, because what we know about the jury is simply this fact. maya wiley. josh dubin. msnbc political analyst michael eric dyson. that's "all in" for this evening. "the "rachel maddow show" begins right now. thank you at home for joining us this hour. today in the news a riveting real life chase. this is rusty, a red panda who lives at the national zoo in washington, d.c. early this morning when zoo keepers went to check in on rusty, hi, rusty, make sure everything was okay, they discovered everything was not okay because rusty was gone. cue the urgent tweet from the national zoo. we're looking for a missing red panda. a male named rusty. funny they thought the gender would be appropriate in identifying him. we're looking for rusty. they included a picture. he was last seen at 6:00 p.m. last night.