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tv   Melissa Harris- Perry  MSNBC  April 19, 2015 7:00am-9:01am PDT

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you get a company that's more than just the sum of it's parts. centurylink. your link to what's next. this morning, my question -- when oh when will loretta lynch become attorney general? plus when 17 presidential candidates isn't enough. and the great poet elizabeth alexander cops to nerdland. first the the "today" show interview that left everyone stunned. good morning. i'm joy reed in for melissa harris-perriment the developments this week involving the shooting death of eric harris in tulsa, oklahoma oh have been nothing short of
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astonish. last sunday this program showed you disturbing video that was released of an unarmed man shot and killed by a reserve deputy. that civilian volunteer, 73-year-old robert bathes said he thought he was grabbing a taser but pulled his gun. he can be heard saying i shot him, i'm sorry. policer were trying to arrest harris for allegedly selling a gun to under cover officers. by monday bates was charged with second degree manslaughter. he turned himself in and was released on $25,000 bond. thursday a uh newspaper report based on anonymous sources emerged making a startling allegation that bates's training records were falsified. his attorney denied the allegations and the sheriff's department dismissed it as rumor. on friday surrounded by his family and his attorney bates sat down for an exclusive interview with matt lauer on nbc's the "today" show.
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first he explained what the role was soes ed to be that day. >> i want you to take me back to april 2, the day this happened. er you were not supposed to be actively involve maryland in the arrest of mr. harris. you were to proviewed support from several blocks away but you did get involved in in the struggle. you write in your written statement that you were not sure whether he was armed and you say you saw, quote, a brief opening to use your taser to subdue him. take me back to that moment. >> matt i was actually parked down the street at the st. clare station, several blocks away from where the activity took place. in other words the dope and the gun purchase. he decided to bolt from the under cover's truck and run. he came to me and two other cars in front. i was the last car, as i always am. uh i car arery the equipments that
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the deputies use to clear a scene, whatever. i have been involved in several hundred of these. i do cleanup when they're done. i take notes. i take photographs. and that's my job. >> then he offered this to eric harris's family. >> first and foremost let me apologize to the family of eric harris. you know this is the second worse thing that's ever happened to meer or first ever happened to me in my life. i have had cancerer a number of years ago. i didn't think i was going to get there. luckily i was able to go to a hospital where i had hours of surgery. i rate this as number one on me list of things in my life i regret. >> mister -- >> in a truly remarkable moment of live tv matt lauer asked
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bates to oh demonstrate where he keeps his taser on his body versus his gun. >> would you do me a favor and stand up for a second and show me where on your body when you are in uniform you keep your taser and where you keep your weapon -- your revolver. can you stand up and show me? >> sure. you bet. my taser is right here on the front tucked in a protective vest. my gun itself is on my side. normally to the rear re. >> people say how can you make this mistake? how could you think you were going for if your taser on your chest tucked into that vest and accidentally pull your weapon. >> well let me say this has happened a number of times around the country. i have read about it in the past. i thought to myself after reading several cases i don't understand how this can happen. uh you must believe me it can happen to anyone.
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>> okay. so finally, matt lauer asked bates about the report this week on his training records. >> you did the training and uh you can prove that you were certified. >> that's absolutely the truth. i have it in writing. >> now yesterday, attorneys for bates released some of the training records. nbc news has the documents that were released but sop of the records are missing. authorities are trying to gather what's missing. following friday's interview the family of eric harris released this statement. we appreciate bob bates's apology for shooting and keling eric. unfortunately his apology won't bring eric back. with each passing day as the facts continue to unfold we have become increasingly disturbed by mr. bates's actions on april 2, 2015 as well as the tulsa county sheriff's office's acts and oh hegss before and after the shooting. we remain vigilant if seeking the truth and our uh pursuit of
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justicement joining me now, judith brown of the advancement project, matt welsh of reason magazine, chris that beltron of social and cultural nals sis at nyu, keith santian, retired detective and former police academy instructor. thank you for being herement. i'm tempted to go right to matt. i have been reading a lot about the issues in policing coming up and uniting people across the ideological divide. what do you make of the notion of private citizens who are not police officers acting in this reserve deputy capacity armed and part of a crime scene. >> armed is troubling. also just sort of the basic lack of training that seems to be apparent here. we don't need shaquille o'neal steven segal out there doing the crime busting and the nation of -- the tape showed not just
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that transaction but also some of the other police involved with the with shooting who said expletive your breath when he was gasping for air on the ground. there is a dismiss sal of the human life they are interacting with which transcends a 73-year-old insurance executive. it's part of police culture too much nowadays. i think we have to imagine that. the reason we are talking about this and have a right-left moment of criminal justice reform is largely because we have more videotape here of this. we get to see not just the actions but also the attitudes behind the alaska sactions that pervaded this case, too. >> absolutely. i want to play another clip of this wealthy donor or as he's been portrayed. this is the question matt lauer asked about him, quote/unquote, playing cop. >> in the wake of this incident
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you have been portrayed as a wealthy and generous supporter of the sheriff's department and a close friend of the sheriff who has been rewarded for your financial support with the opportunity -- and this is what's out there -- to play cop and carry a gun. is that a fair characterization? >> that is unbelievably unfair. i have donated equipment as i saw fit. when the need happened to arise to allow the task force and other areas of the sheriff's office to better do their jobs on the street of tulsa. tulsa has a drug problem. there is no question. nobody argues that. i am willing to put up equipment to assist them to better educate the public. >> so, keith i want to come to
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you as a former law enforcement officer. i think what matt is describing is a sense among the public as we are starting to see these incidents rather than just have them described by the families of the deceased or by witnesses. now that we are seeing police culture in action then you have a guy who is not an officer who seems to embody the culture, the sense of hey, there is a drug problem, i'm out there trying to police it. then the kind of -- i don't know. talk to me about the way police see the communities that they are policing and whether that culture translates to the civilians who side with them and work with them asle volunteers. >> okay. this is troubling, first of all. it's amazing the cavalier approach to policing nowadays. to bring an individual like this who is up there in tenure to say the least. to do such a tactical buy and bust with firearms and to come on the scene later with other officers on the scene is
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troubling to us. lack of training. and there are clearly ethyl call and integrity issues involved with the department. >> is he absorbing a mindset that is in your opinion out there among officers? spp absolutely. he's bringing on the same good old boy attitude toward policing. this has to stop. the only thing happening now is that we are seeing it more often. it's been happening for yearsment now the video is bringing everything to light. i i wouldn't want to be in his position now. >> i think the video -- the existence of video now really does change in a lot of ways the conversation. it does feel like communities of color have been saying for quite a long time there are issues of basic respect and valuation of the lives of the people in the community. seeing people in the community as criminals, et cetera. that the videotape changes that. there is research that shows when you introduce body cameras, there is a reduction in the use of oh force oh by police.
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is the actual tape what is needed here to bring these sides together and start to get traction on the civil rights issues? >> i definitely think the cameras and the video helps. let's think about rodney king right? that was the first time in which -- in quite some teem you saw it on tape and people had an ah-ha moment. for communities of color, we are thinking this happens all the time. it opens up a discourse and an opportunity for structural change. but at the end of the day, if we don't change the policies internally, the structural problems if we don't change that mindset. for this man -- basically he bought his opportunity to live out his childhood fantasies. unfortunately what he did was he acted upon an african-american man thinking just like a lot of police officers do, these folks aren't human. we are going in and we are going to bust heads and i'm going to have a good time doing it.
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>> i want to bring in christina and keep it going on the other side of the break. we have to take a break. so hold on. we have a lot to get to this morningment i want to let the audience know under way now in oklahoma is the 20th anniversary remembrance ceremony for the bombing in oklahoma city. 168 people were killed in what was then the worst act of oh of domestic terrorism in american history. bill clinton will speak at the ceremony and we'll bring it to you live. up next for us on the issue of police use of force, what happens when there is no video? a man who was shot by police in his own family's driveway. but the details are in dispute. he will join us next.
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in multiple recent incidents of oh police-involved shootings we have seen how video, be it cell phone video from a bystander or from a police dash cam or body camera, can play a major role in both how the public and the legal system responds. but what if there is no video? what if you were hot by a police officer and believe the officer was in the wrong but you have no video to make your case? that's the claim of robby tolan in bell air texas. a police officer, john edwards, observed what he called an abrupt turn into a cul-de-sac. the driver was then a 23-year-old minor league baseball player. also this the car was his uh cousin anthony cooper. they pulled up to the family home. according to the court documents after typing the license plate into the patrol car computer the officer believed the car to be stolen stolen. p he got out of the car, drew his gun and ordered the men to
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lie on oh the ground. that's when tolan's mother and father emerged from inside the house. court documents say his father bobby, a well known former major league baseball player tried to assure the vehicle that the vehicle wasn't stolen. take a look at what a court document from 2013 says happened next. bobby tolan, rob's father yelled at cooper and rob by to stay down. marian walked repeatedly in front of officer edwards's drawn pistol insisting no crime had been committed. dealing with four people in a chaotic and confusing scene, officer edwards radio ed for expedited assistance. sergeanting the tension in offer edwards voice believed him to be in danger. what happened next is in
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dispute. according to the tolan's sergeant cotton pushed marian into the garage door. the tolan's say when robby rose to protest cotton's handling of his mother cotton shot at him three times, hit ing him once. sergeant cotton told a different story. he and officer edwards maintain marian refused to remain calm and quiet and it was when her son robby tried to intervene that sergeant cotton feared for his life and shot robby. sergeant cotton was with tried for aggravated assault by a public servant. a you are jury acquitted him, agreeing that the shooting was justified. robby are tolan survived the shooting though a bullet is still in his liver today. as the jurors learned the vehicle wasn't stolen. officer edwards typed the wrong license plate number into the system. he was off by one digit. the family pursued a civil suit claiming the actions were
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racially motivated and violated their constitutional rights but a court oh dismissed the casement the judge noted qualified immunity. the protection police officers have from liability from civil damages. when the tolans apeeld the u.s. court of appeals for the 5th circuit court dismissed the court on the saepme grounds. in may of last year the supreme court ordered the 5th court to reconsider. the judges rule thad the lower courts made a mistake by never hearing the family's version of events before coming to a ruling. six years after the shooting the tolans will have the opportunity to tell their version of the events of the night in court. we did reach the attorney for sergeant cotton and the city who said the case was dismissed, sergeant cot top was acquitted and there is no indication that sergeant cotton has been anything other than proper in his conduct. of course this case we only have
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are the word of the people who were there and their differing accounts. to piece together what happened that night. because in this case there was no video. joining me now from houston, texas, are robby tolan and his mother marian. thank you for being here. >> thanks for joining us. >> thank you. >> i want to start with you, robby. physically how are you doing six years after those events? i guess we did mention you were a high nor league baseball player. did it interrupt your career? how are you? >> i have my good days and bad days. you know like you said the bullet is still in me. i have emotional and physical scars and i ache all day long. i have back spasms. it's my life nowment i'm used to it now. i'm still achy from it. >> as we read the long
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complicated story, marian part of thor narrative is -- and as any mother listening to the story, one can reelate to your visceral fear seeing a gun pointed at your son. looking back do you look back at that night and ask yourself whether anything that you did contributed to the chaos of the scene that might have led a reasonable police officer to legitimately fear for his life? >> no. not at all. first of all it was our home. we have a right to protect in our home. is so i don't think -- i was explaining to them, we have lived here for 15 years. we have never had anything like this happen. i don't think i did anything different than a white mother or any other race mother would have done. because we were telling the truth. the car wasn't stolen. the car was registered to the
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very address it was parked in front of. i was telling them i believe that had uh i been white the officers would have said can you -- oh we're sorry. can you show us some proof? they never said that. they never said give us a minute. and they lied. today clearly lied about the evidence. you know, in one instance i was still blessed in spite of how horrific this scene was that i didn't have any questions. i witnesseded it. you know i i think about the mothers who get a knock on the door or the phone call. that your son's been shot. i witnessed it. i know that i didn't do anything to cause that and robbie didn't do anything. the officer didn't push me to the garage door. he threw me against the garage door.
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>> i want to bring you back to ask you a similar question. with this many years of hindsight looking back on the incident. when you saw as your mother said, she was pushed or oh whatever happened between her and the officer, looking back can you see anything you did that might have contributed to the officer's belief that the scene was chaotic and dangerous for the officer? >> no. i don't believe i i did anything to add to that. that's what they are trained to do. police are trained for hostile situations. i think it is up to them to use common sense and discernment to say let's use common sensement hab the homeowners come out in their pajamas and say, that's my son, that's my car. maybe we have a mistake. let's pull back a little bit, but that's not what happened. i believe uh i did what any son would do if their mother was thrown against a wall by anyone
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let alone a police officer. >> i want everyone at the table as well as rob and marian to stay with us. we'll continue the story. it's complex. stay with us. we'll have more after this. go get help, boy. go get help. go get help! right now! if you're a cat, you ignore people. it's what you do. if you want to save fifteen percent or more on car insurance you switch to geico. it's what you do. go on kitty, kitty...
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symmetrical all-wheel drive plus 34 mpg. love. it's what makes a subaru a subaru. we're back with robbie and marian tolan who experienced -- in marian's case every mother's nightmare -- a police incident in front of her own home involving her is son robbie. i want to come back to uhyou, robbie. looking at the incident that occurred with uh you doing so in light of the other cases that have come out. mike brown, eric garner just looking at those cases has that informed the way you view what happened to you? >> you know i'm normally a pretty private person. i don't bother people. i don't like to be bothered. so sometimes, you know when
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dealing with the emotional scars i want the crawl in a hole and disappear. but i feel like i have an obligation to speak on behalf of the people that can't speak for themselves anymore. i don't know if you knew this. on the same day i was shot, osser car grant this oakland and adolf grimes in new orleans were with shot. we were all shot within 36 hours of oh each other. when you hear cases like that and trayvon martin, michael brown, jordan davis, jordan baker in houston. you know i have an obligation. i am the voice for the voiceless. that's what i try to focus on. >> i want to bring the table p in. i'm struck by the fact that when the shooting happened despite the fact that the young man involved is a baseball player had a level of of notoriety it didn't unleash the outrage we have seen in later cases. what's changed about the way the public looks at incidents between police officers and civilians, not knowing all the
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facts obviously but hearing the visceral are, a police officer shot a civilian. >> what changed in part is the litany of oh events. there have been so many over and over again. people are more aware of the ongoingness of this. but this does speak to the issue of having cameras. having tape and videotape is an enormously useful thing. you have a documentation that's unbiased. but at the same time i think we have to really realize the limits of this technology and what it will do. at some level one thing we are dealing with here is imperfect people acting under conditions of stress and anxiety. and the kind of culture of demand for obedience from the police. this focus on oh obedience and force that you know obliterates people's ability to acquire justice or p be treated fairly. these are things as we have more videotape we are also going to be seeing more complex stories going on. we have to be able to talk about
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what we are seeing and try to make sense of it. it's not like -- people are going to respond in perfect ways. people will be panicking, scared and they will make mistakes. that doesn't stop the fact of the matter that the police are acting in ways. we need to rethink the cull cure uh of oh policing. that's a big issue. >> p with somebody that's a former officer that is an important point. do police officers believe and are they trained to believe no matter what they tell a civilian to doha the person must do it immediately regardless? >> officers are trained to assess each situation independently. patience. sometimes you need to let a person vent. the case can be brought down. the immediacy is what we are having a problem with. there is no need to rush. time is our ally. >> on that point i want to play a little bit of an officer in a situation that's similar but who responded differently in ohio. if we have the tape and we can play it this ohio officer is
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wearing a body camera and confronting an armed suspect who was being threatening. you talk about patience. let's listen to the tape. >> get your hands up! get your hands up! get your hands up right now! [ bleep ]. >> stop right there. i don't want to shoot you, man. [ shouting ] >> i will shoot you! >> do it now. [ bleep ]. >> i want to come back. i actually want to go to robbie tolan and bring are you back into the conversation. you have officers wo have different ways of dealing with people. the officers who dealt with you, did you feel you were in a situation where the officer was behaving -- the officer in that videotape was trying to work the situation out. is that the kind of policing we should expect if from your point of view? >> you know, i think time is
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your ally. the officer who shot me was on the scene for 32 seconds before doing so. like i said common sense, let's pull back on the uh aggression and figure out what's going on oh. some people need to vent. hey, we have lived here 15 yearsment the homeowner has come out in their pajamas maybe we have a mess take. let's see some i.d. i think to, you know put your foot further down on the gas pedal won't help either party in this situation. >> keith, why doesn't that -- go on. >> i i'm done. >> i'm sorry. keith, why do you think that doesn't happen? >> what we are seeing with the videos and you willer hear this a lot from officers that i had to make a split second decision. >> i'm sorry. i i need to take a break, so so i teed to thank robbie tolan and marian tolan in houston. bf we go to break i want to show you the live picture out of oklahoma.
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this is the 20th anniversary remembrance ceremony paying tribute to those killed and injured in the oklahoma city bombing in 1995. we are awaiting remarks from former president bill clinton. we'll bring it to you live. when we come back we'll ask this question . are the police being asked to do too much. keeping a billion customers a year flying means keeping seven billion transactions flowing. and when weather hits, it's data mayhem. but airlines running hp end-to-end solutions are always calm during a storm. so if your business deals with the unexpected hp big data and cloud solutions make sure you always know what's coming-and are ready for it. make it matter. anyone have occasional constipation diarrhea, gas, bloating? yes! one phillips' colon health probiotic cap each day helps defend against these occasional digestive issues... with 3 types of good bacteria. live the regular life. phillips'
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we are going to oklahoma city for the remembrance of the bombing that killed 168 people in 1995. speaking now is former president bill clinton. >> senator langford congressman lucas lucas, mayor cornett, thank you. i loved hearing you reliving those times. i want to thank governor keating.
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most of oh you don't know this but i have known frank keating longer than you have. we met at georgetown. america's old ohest jesuit university. i was a southern baptist. they asked me what i was doing there. i said i hoped i could figure it out before i had to leave. the first encounter we had, we were having a partisan disagreement over a campus issue. it continues from 1964 or '65 for 30 years. until oklahoma city. he and kathy for magnificent.
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for a whole country you burned away all the petty squabbles in which we engaged, leaving only our basic humanity. i mostly came here to thank you today. i prepared for this day yesterday by taking hillary to see our daughter and son-in-law and my -- about to be 7-month-old grandchild. hillary and i bathed her and fed her and put her to bed. i looked at her in that crib so so i could remember how you felt those of you who lost your loved ones. i want to first say i know how
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hard this is. when i came to oklahoma oh city four days after the bombing i wanted to see the family of the secret service agent who perished because he was on my detail. he wanted to come because he thought it would be a wonderful place to raise a family. joe clancy is here . 20 years ago he was on my detail, too. he advanced my trip to oklahoma city. when you strip away the things that divide us it's important to remember how tied we are and how much we all americans owe oklahoma city. people came here from around the country to help you.
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one of them was chief of the new york city fire department named ray downy. i met him here. almost six years later, lo and behold i was living in new york with my foundation and hillary was a senator. ray downy lost his life on 9/11. trying to oh get people out of the twin towers. when they fell among the first people to show up to help were the workers from oklahoma city oh. i can tell you nobody has ever forgotten that. so i wanted to say thank you. i think of oklahoma city sometimes a tale of two trees. that one who proved that you're tough, strong and endure. and a dogwood that hillary and i
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planted on the south lawn of the white house on my way down here that fateful day 20 years ago. dogwoods for all of us are a sign of springtime and rebirth. for those of us who are christians they are also a sign of new beginnings and second chances. so uh i thank you. nelson mandela was a great friend of mine for 20 years. he taught me a lot of things from his 27 years the ss ss in prison. he taught me in the face of tragedy, evil and loss there are only two things that always remain that can't ever be taken away -- your mind and your heart. we must decide what to do with the them. no matter what happens.
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>> that's of course former president bill clinton honoring the victims of the oklahoma city bombing that killed 168 people and wounded hundreds more on this day in 1995. we'll take a short break and come back with my panel to continue our discussion on the policing of america. audible safety beeping audible safety beeping audible safety beeping the nissan rogue with safety shield technologies. the only thing left to fear is you imagination. nissan. innovation that excites. i will take beauty into my own hands...where it belongs. olay regenerist. it regenerates surface cells. new skin is revealed in only 5 days. without drastic measures.
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steady is exciting. only glucerna has carbsteady clinically proven to help minimize blood sugar spikes. i'm a bull rider make it part of your daily diabetes plan. so you stay steady ahead. we are back. we have been talking about the 2008 case the police shooting case of robbie tolan a minor league baseball player shot by a police officer who surviveded. he was in the driveway of oh his mother's home. i want to come to you, judith on the question of oh civil liability. the tolans attempted to go to court and they did not prevail. why didn't they prevail on summary judgment and what is summary judgment? >> first there are two different tinges. they were in court on ohle criminal charges against the officer. that's one.
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then they went for civil liability which gives you money damages. what happens is often for police officers if they are acting within their oh official duty they get what we call qualified immunity which means basically you get off the hook if you were acting as a state official. right? in this case what happens is in summary judgment that's where a lot of cases are kicked out. they never go to trial because, in fact, the courts can rule just are on the paper. they don't have to listen to witness withes et cetera. just on the paper the facts look like it is enough that this officer acted within their duties as a police officer. so often we find victims having no recourse in the courts whatsoever. they can't get past summary judgment because they can't get through qualified immunity. the officers get kind of a coat of oh protection from the law. i think what happened in this particular case is the supreme court said, wait a second. there are facts in controversy
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that have to go back before a court, before a trial court. they will finally have their day in court but it is an uphill battle. >> does that qualified immunity carry over? if an officer is fired from the police force because we hear in recent cases the families gearing up to file a lawsuit potentially against the department but sometimes even against the officer. does that immunity spill over? >> no. what you may find is that the actual police department may say this person was acting outside of the realm of -- that's not often that you are get a police department saying this person has gone beyond the duties beyond and actually clearly violated someone else's rights. you don't often get them turning on their own officers. >> i want to ask you whether or not that's a tenable situation. the if we have with broad immunity for police officers. were with you surprised the supreme court said to go back and look again. >> i was surprised it was thams. some of the supreme court justices have shown great
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reference toward law and order over the years. the fact that especially justice scalia got in and joined that one, this is on someone's property. the supreme court takes it seriously. the pendulum has swung too far. summary judgment is supposed to be i will take the vip's sidectim's side and see if they were correct would the officer be liable. summary judgment says he wouldn't be liable so we'll kick it out. the deference this shows in the lower court cases toward the police is untenable. the tolans have gone an incredible amount just to get the this far. it's incredible. the fact that they have the officer indicted in the first place almost never happens. we don't generally have independent prosecutors of officer-involved shootings. so oh the whole system is biased. not just qualified immunity for prosecutors. there is blanket immunity for
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prosecutors. if they are consistently engaged in activityiesactivities, unlawful prosecutions, supporting perjury of witnesses they don't get a problem at all. >> they have immunity too. >> they are throughout the system and they are why we don't get a will the of action against bad cops. >> indeed. this is such a hot topic. we'll continue after the break. up next we'll ask the question whether or not what we are asking police to do is too much. ♪ turn around ♪ ♪ every now and then i get a little bit hungry ♪ ♪ and there's nothing good around ♪ ♪ turn around, barry ♪ ♪ i finally
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when walter scott died after being sot in the back multiple times by a north charleston police officer this month his family suggested he may have run in an attempt to avoid jail time for unpaid child support. scott's home skate of south carolina is one of the toughest when it comes to punishing parents who don't pay, even when there is no evidence that the strategy is working. this week it was written at some point americans decided that the best answer to every social ill
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lay in the power of the criminal justice system. vexing social problems homelessness, drug use, the inability to support one's children mental illness are solved by sending in men and women who specialize in inspiring fear and ensuring compliance. fear and compliance have tear place but it can't be every place. it's a provocative point. i want to put the question to my panel. are we asking the police to do too much. i will come to you on that question. >> at times, yes. an officer who has many hat s, as you are taught in academy. uh you are the first line for everything. people expect you to though the answer to every social issue, any environmental question et cetera. there are laws on the books that clearly police officers shouldn't be handling that are small. you may have to get a task force. a small outside agency that police should not be involved p in to where people wouldn't fear going to jail for not paying
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child support. >> right. >> and an immediate state to where they have to flee from a cop. >> at the same time you have social ills. you have things like child support, domestic situations whether it's truancy up to domestic violence. if the police aren't the right agency to handle all of the social ills who is? >> i think if we are really talking about police reform this is -- i think the article in "the atlantic" is required reading for the issue. he put his finger on something critical which is that we have decided to ask the police to do everything. there is a way in which they are social workers, dealing with people at the ground level. but clearly what we have done is criminalized inequality. right? when we are dealing with issues of -- the fact that we think it is normal that a problem of oh homelessness or drug addiction or mental illness is that the police are the first responders to that. it's really an insane question. when you think about what we are doing it's pretty absurd.
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one thing as we think deeply about reformer presidenting police culture, we should be thinking creatively about should there be other forces involved other kinds of responders? should police have to go through a process where maybe people spend years not carrying guns but dealing with communities in particular ways. like we are smart enough people that we should think creatively about new ways to confront the myriad social problems we have without the logic of force as our oh first logic. >> isn't that the essence of oh community policing, having police in the community on small things so they know the community when big things happen? >> not that they lock them up on small things. that's not the way it should go. this is really just endemic of our country's rush to incarcerate people. in the work we do on the prison pipeline for example police are in schools arresting kids tr for minor things often because the school deeydecided it is easier to
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turn that young person -- 5-year-old temper tantrum, turn it over to the cop to handle it so we don't have to. >> yeah. >> we have to think about what might seem like hard work but the preventative work. >> is it the police or the laws? >> it's the laws primarily. we have too many stupid laws the police shouldn't be enforcing. you shouldn't be in a choke hold for selling a loose cigarette. people can't count the laws. they are in the thousands nowment they shouldn't be enforcing that and there shouldn't be incentive for local cops to use citizens as revenue streams. it's happening all over the country. it is a terrible incentive. we need to get rid of that. >> thank you very much. i want to thank keith. the rest of the panel is sticking around. up next, loretta lynch's long wait. 162 days and counting. even the president is losing patience. perfectly good food going to waste. why are we throwing away almost
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welcome back. i'm joy reed in for melissa. it's been 162 days since loretta lynch was nominated to be the nation's next attorney general. still, no vote. the delay has been the subject of oh speculation, bewilderment and frustration. loretta limpbl has the votes to be confirmed. she has enough republican backers. there is no denying, she has what it takes to do the job. so what gives? well senate majority leader mitch mcconnell has the power to end the waiting game by putting lynch's vote on the senate calendar. he's playing hard ball re fusing to allow senators to leapfrog over a stalled anti-human trafficking bill to vote on lynch. according to the new york times mcconnell told his colleagues the senate would vote on lynch
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this week just as he had always planned. here he is on the senate floor on thursday. >> i have indicated, gosh at least for six weeks now we are going to deal with the lynch nomination right after we finish trafficking. >> i'm sorry. what? where in the senate's bylaws does it say trafficking first, confirmation vote second? even as the lynch debacle is shining light on what's perceived as a dysfunctional senate that gets nothing done a lot can be done and certainly more than one thing at a time. take a look at this week. the u.s. senate did things. it struck deals on iran education and trade, on tuesday the senate overwhelmingly approved an historic $200 billion medicaid reform package. on thursday the senate education committee voted unanimously in favor of a no child left behind revision. bipartisan break through for the contentious law. as for the lynch vote --
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crickets. sorry says o'connell. trafficking first and then the nomination from more than five months ago which is why the push to end the stalemate intensified this week. especially after the president blasted the senate in uncharacteristically spirited fashion during a press conference on friday. >> this is the top law enforcement job in the country. what are we doing here? i have to say there are times where the dysfunction in the senate just goes too far. this is an example of it. it's gone too far. enough. enough. call loretta lynch for a vote . get her confirmed. put her in place. let her do her job. this is embarrassing. a process like this. >> now maybe republican leaders
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in the senate don't care much about upsetting president obama. they may want to think twice about a particular constituency that's paying attention to this historic delay of oh an historic nominee. that would be black women voters. republicans have to ask, do they really want to be seen as the ones who prevented the confirmation of the first african-american woman woman nominateded to hold the top law enforcement position in the country? here's the thing. black women are a powerful force at the polls. leading in voter turnout among all women. that presidential election gender gap you hear about, the one where president obama won 56% of women voters in 2008 and 55% in 2012? uh you need to look deeper. there is not just a gender gap, there is a race gender gap. in 2008 senator mccain won 53% of the white wem's vote. in 2012 governor romney won white women with 56%. but now look at women of color. latina voters went for president
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obama at a rate of 68 and 76% in 2008 and 2012. african-american women, in both 2008 and 2012 they were for president obama at a rate of 96%. now if you know black women voted for the democrat at a rate of 96% and you are the republican leader of the senate wouldn't you think black women aren't a group you want to be motivating to get out and vote in 2016? might you think holding up the nomination of the first black woman attorney general might be doing that? joining me now is codirector of the advancement project, matt welch of oh "reason" magazine christina beltran from nyu and vince warren from the center for constitutional rights. vince, i will go to you first. is there anything to the argument that essentially by old hoing up the no, ma'am nation of lynch republicans are getting nothing much accomplished because she's eventually going
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to get through while angering black women. >> absolutely. it make nos political sense, no legal sense. based on what we are deal ing with in the country now in terms of oh policing and race it 's an abdication of responsibility to really move forward some good policies with good people in order to solve a problem. i don't understand wie the republicans really want to just push black women and latino folks to the side. then at the same time expect they will be able to reel people in with their candidates. it makes no sense at all. >> uh you mentioned the confluence of policing and race. dick durbin made a comment that seemed to be either strategery in terms of look at this black woman being held up or oh just speaking out of turn. >> loretta lynch, the first african-american woman nominated to be attorney general is asked
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to sit in the back of the bus when it comes to the senate calendar spp he calendar. >> he went to the back of the bus. this is how john mccain answered that. >> what's beneath the decorum and dignity of the senate i would say to the senator from illinois is for him to come to this floor and use that imagery and suggest that racist tactics are being employed to delay ms. lynch's confirmation vote. such inflammatory rhetoric has no place in this body and serves no purpose. >> maybe. or maybe it's helpful to the democrats in 2016. >> feeling like a kanye moment here. they never loved us right? # sisters for loretta lynch. this is really -- they don't care right -- about black women voters. we are going to turn out. it will be retribution, right? she's being held hostage for
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their political gain. but also at a moment where they are holder haters right? >> eric holder. >> right. here you have a woman who is going to continue the work of eric holder on policing, on immigration, on other things. so there is concern about that. for us to think they can't multi task if they can't multi task they need to go home. so this is really an interesting moment. i think when women are going to turn out in record numbers, when black women repeatedly turn out in record numbers, they are going to have a problem. >> matt eric holder's name has been brought to the table. the republicans say this is about a human trafficking bill they want to go first. sometimes you hear it is about lynch's stance on president obama's immigration executive action. is this this about eric holder?
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>> it is largely petulance about immigration, upset with the president's executive actions on that so we'll hold this up. other people have reason that is align more with mine. rand paul oh poses this nomination not because of oh immigration and human trafficking but because loretta lynch is one of the most single biggest enthusiasts for and prak technicianers of civil asset forfeiture. when she was in brooklyn she said, okay great. even though this cup is owned by someone who is not engaged in illegal activity we think it might be illegal so we'll seize it. she has used it as a way to fund her off. this is a problem in american life. it is part of the incentive structure we talked about before when police departments are using people to shake them down and pocket the winnings. she's also lousy on the drug war which has not a small impact on communities of color out there. she has said she's not sure
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whether marijuana is more dangerous or less dangerous than alcohol which is a nonsense point to be made. it signals that she's afraid to go against where the pendulum is swinging on the drug war with. these are le g-8 mat reasons to a pose. i will be the touredurd in the punch bowl. if lynch is at the back of the bus, rogers brown was at a lunch counter with her hands in bracelets. she was held up by senate democrats for two years as a bush appointee to the d.c. circuit. black woman. they didn't like her politics. nobody then suggested it was because of racism. >> christina, those are actually substantive debating points about lynch. why aren't republicans making those points? we are with not hearing it other than from rand paul. >> it's bad strategy on their part. what's interesting is we could have an interesting conversation
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about what's productive and problematic about lynch as a candidate, somebody going up to become attorney general. all they have managed to do is galvanize the community. et's bad strategically but it is interesting because it's like a republican trifecta of alienation. they will alienate women, black women, women of color and general latina women and immigration advocates. they have produced this interesting coalition of people. hillary clinton will be able to invoke this effectively. i'm glad you brought up the issue of intersectional ti and when we understand the gender gap we have to look at race. women aren't just a free floating category. we don't talk about who is mobilized here but we could an important conversation. they are galvanizing which does well for democrats but not much for the conversation. >> this is the most democratic of the next senate cycles. people are having to run for
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re-election. it will be interesting. up next, we'll get the story of oh loretta lynch and harry reid lays down the law. i take prilosec otc each morning for my frequent heartburn. because it gives me... zero heartburn! prilosec otc. the number 1 doctor-recommended frequent heartburn medicine for 9 straight years. one pill each morning. 24 hours. zero heartburn. meet the world's newest energy superpower. surprised? in fact, america is now the world's number one natural gas producer...
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it has been 162 day thes since loretta lynch was nominated to replace eric holder as the nation's next a.g. and still no vote. as you saw earlier it isn't going over well with president obama and his party couldn't agree with him more. on thursday senate minority leader harry reid addressed the situation with msnbc's own rachel maddow. >> we have put up up with it too long. we need to have a vote created by mitch mcconnell or i will create one. i can do that. i know parliamentary procedure
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here. we are going to put up with it for a little while longer. >> a little head swinging by reid. on the same day white house press secretary josh ernest spent several minutes during a news briefing to lament the his to the rick delay. >> there is no reason why she shouldn't be confirmed today by the united states senate. the worst crime is their refewle sal to allow her to come up upper for a vote. it's shameful. it should change todayment being nice got us a 160-day delay. >> lynch holds two degrees frommer harvard and is the longest waiting a.g. nominee in three decades. we were talk about the logistics of not having the debate you want with a vote. now to what reid said. he said i know parliamentary procedure, i will force a vote. is it practical? >> it's like professor m mcgonagall saying i will cook
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something up in the ministry of magic. i'm digging that. the bottom line is someone -- and i think harry reid needs to use his political tallcapital to move it forwardment it's about momentum, about what's not happening and the community groups and folks we have identified feel isn't happening. here is why it is important. even if you think about it in the context of policing and this stuff. under title vi of the civil rights act the department of justice can and should hold police departments accountable for their funding. she will have the ability to say, yes, in order for you to getle federal funding you have to demonstrate equitable policing, that you are doing things in the right way. this is the political moment for that to happen. harry reid and democrats need to step up and force it to happen. there is no debate really. >> they can't force a debate to happen without getting at least four or five republicans to go along with the parliamentary procedure where 51 senators
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could force a vote through. if we have a map of the 24 senate seats, republican senate seats and ten democratic seats. look at the map. that's the senate cycle. all those red spaces are the senators that can be targeted by harry reid to get republicans to sign onto the idea to force a vote. do you think it can work? >> well -- i mean that map is really decisive. the map shows that there is a log jam in congress for a reason. in fact, i think it 's showing that there may not be incentive, right, for people to jump ship. there may not be incentive for people to want to move because they've got to hold it down at home. >> i wonder about just this hypothetical. what would happen in theory among women of color if lynch were to say, enough. if she were to be like the rock obama. if she were to do what susan rice did when it came to her
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nomination when he couldn't get thop nated in the civil rights division. if she were to withdraw would it be worse politics here? >> it would look awful. if she said i refuse to be treated like this i think what's interesting is one with of the circulating debates you hear in places where on black talk radio or other places is the feeling she 's being disrespected treating in a disrespectful manner. if she were to say, i'm done with this that would be a huge political problem for the party. the wave of outrage. i think people often in the public who aren't political junkies and members of nerdland don't know the names of folks and aren't following closely. the i timing of this and the five months of this is created a constituency of people watching and committed and interested. if she were to do something dramatic that could have a big impact. >> on the other hand could republicans redeem themselves in the way you described in the previous segment meaning is have are the hearing and raise
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substantive objections where it becomes a debate or would hectoring her over civil asset forfeiture make it worse? >> i don't think it would make it worse. we are in a year now where we are likely to see a series of very important criminal justice reform bipartisan measures. rand paul, cory booker are taping up for things. on civil asset forfeiture repealing sentencing guide license and a lot of things are are happening now. this happened because of grassroots activity on the right and left pushing people. pushing eric holder at long last. start peeling away the asseter forfeiture regime. what i say to everybody out there is yes, pay attention to the washington kerfuffle. realize the way you will change behavior and policy now, so take advantage of a lame duck presidency where he could see his heart is probably more in the area of reform. he lacked the courage in the presidency to commute sentencing, do great things.
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use the next moment to push it. the koch brothers and the atlu are teaming up. it's time. if republicans were smart they would make the hearings about that so we can have more momentum toward important reforms. >> this is an important discussion. uh i'm going to go ahead and award the victory to matt for saying kerfuffle. what's better than that? thank you judith browne dianus and vince warren. matt and christina will stick around. up next the people who say 17 candidates for president? that's not enough. ♪ ♪ ♪ you're only young once. unless you have a subaru.
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they ate a lot of pie. there were a lot of them. bush, christie cruz jindal paul perry, rubio and walker were there. there were even more likely candidates who skipped the trip. notably rick santorum and ben carson. now hillary clinton is on her way to the granite state. although she's very much a lead democrat yek front runner she's not alone in her ambition for the nomination. several others will likely run including martin o'malley and jim webb. then there is the independent and avowed socialist senator bernie sanders. all together it's 17 likely candidates for president. that's a lot. for some voters none of the 17 people are anything to get excited about. they want to see more people throw their hats in the ring. some want to see elizabeth warren the firebrand, tough on wall street no nonsense senator from has mass. they want her to take on hillary clinton for the democratic no,
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ma'am nation. she's said many many many times she won't run for president. that hasn't swayed the warren faithful. other dems want america's favorite uncle the gaffe prone but experienced joe biden make a run. vice president biden has been coy about the possibility. he and warren are well behind hillary clinton by 50 points. that's out of 100. nevertheless, in an election cycle where political strategists worry about an enthusiasm gap warren and biden have some voters excited about 2016. two of them join me live from chicago. erica sagrans the campaign manager for ready for warren and will pierce of the draft biden 2016. let's start on the biden side will. why are you riding with biden? >> i'm riden with biden because this man has over 30 years of experience as a senator, foreign policy experience and seven years in the executive. as a veteran deployed to iraq
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and afghanistan i appreciate the fact that his son has served and the vice president knows what it is like to send boots on the ground. >> well played. erica, i want to talk about the realistic fach of what you are trying to do. i want to play you actor mark ruffalo. >> would you please please not say no to running? at least being in a primary. take your rightful place in the history of this great nation. because we need you. we feed your voesice, your politics. >> here is seth meyers explaining the response to that. >> the firm no is hardly in line with answers she's given in previous interviews. take a look. >> there is no way you will run 201? >> i'm not running for president. you can ask it lots of oh different ways. >> okay we will.
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>> are you going to run for president? >> i'm not running. >> there is nothing that could change your mind? >> david, like i said i'm not running for president. >> if hillary didn't run you might give it a shot? >> i'm not running for president. >> people raised this about you. they say you say you are not running for president. does that mean you will not run for president in 2016? >> ooh, good questioner charlie. >> it's easy to see warren's appeal. when you hear her repeatedly say she's not running why do you keep it up? >>er warren has been a reluctantlele politician. when she sees support she decided to run for senatement we believe we can convince her. she 's been out talking to supporters, giving speeches. talking to media in the past few weeks. she's not rushed to endorse another candidate. it's very early. at the end of the seth myers clip he played barack obama saying he wasn't planning to run for rpt. all candidates have to say that. hillary clinton said it as well.
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it is earliment we believe we can convince her to run. >> i'm not sure hillary clinton said it 72,000 times. let's say you got what uh you wanted and your candidates ran. let's talk about their potential demerits. will, vice president joe are biden has a great deal of foreign policy experience. he was put on the ticket for a reason. he's appealing to blue collar voters. he also has a reputation as being kind of a goof gaffe-prone. there are pictures the onion has a send-up of him as the guy hitting on your grandma. the silly side of joe biden and that reputation, does it make him less credible as a potential presidential candidate? >> absolutely not. he can relate to anyone. everyday americans. one thing i would like to point out is all the time 24/7 as president and vice president they are followed around by the white house press corps.
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imagine having a camera in your face 24/7. the average american appreciate he's not speaking off a teleprompter. he says what is on oh his mind. this is someone they can relate to. >> now to youmentle one of the issues elizabeth warren has. she's popular with democratic liberals. she doesn't have a broad democratic base. the democratic party is latino african-american. that's what you teed to win. how do you trace the where i shall? >> i think warren has shown -- the thing about warren is not as many people know her yet. when people know her in focus groups and other areas, they respond very well and really like her. i have met folks across the country of all different backgrounds who really have spoken about how excited they are. i'm surprised people know who warren is. but talk passionately about how they believe she will fight for them. she's the one person who fights for the little guy. >> i will come back in a second.
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i want to talk to christina and matt a little bit. what does the fact that you have passionate support for candidate who is don't want to get in. maybe biden. what does it say about the current field ? >>we are in an interesting moment with hillary because of what happened in 2008. i think -- i mean it varies. we were talking before the break. there is a lot of support for hillary. deeply passionate in pockets of the democratic party. certain segments in democrats are excited about her . there are other segments hoping for a larger conversation, a bigger dialogue around issues hoping that the primary. one of the things that happened with the obama clinton fight that went on was we had a series of useful conversations. i think there is a hope that there will be a deliberative democratic moment in the party where lots of people can talk issues. the issue that's hard is -- i think you see it with biden. there is no pressing issue he brings to the table. if a candidate is going to come
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in they need to have a critical issue no one is talking about. that's a reason why hillary is pivoting leftment. >> she's trying to beat warren. >> already. that's a reason why. >> do you think that gives an opening for the republicans if there isn't a consensus that hill rery is mags gnat. >> nobody likes a coronation. hillary clinton is significantly away from the base on civil liberties, intervention and war. in many ways she is not the candidate of deblasio chewy garcia elizabeth warren left now. there is a lot of energy around the issues that she doesn't embody. >> very quickly to wrap up. very short answer. if your candidate doesn't run who is your second chose? >> right now we are focused on the process. what we'll do is support whoever the nominee is. we are pushing joe biden. >> erica, exit question. who is your second choice? >> it's stull early .
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we want to get warren in the race. >> okay. all right. you guys are sticking with your candidates. thank you to will and erica in chicago. here in new york, thank uh you to cr are istina and matt. the documentary that will change how you look at your next meal. and elizabeth alexander is here to talk about her new memoir already winning high praise from none other than the first lady michelle obama. he says she's an undisciplined overwaterer. she claims he's a cruel underwaterer. with miracle-gro moisture control potting mix,
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audible safety beeping audible safety beeping the nissan rogue with safety shield technologies. the only thing left to fear is you imagination. nissan. innovation that excites. 40% of the food produced in the united states goes to waste. 40%. four-zero. just thrown away. a document are tri premiering on msnbc this wednesday will have you rethinking what's in your fridge and what's on your grocery list. >> there was a study in new york. they looked at all the food waste in one county. the most waste came from households. more than restaurants,
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supermarkets, farms. >> in our households we are wasting somewhere between 15 and 25% of the food that we are buying. that's expensive. imagine walking out of a grocery store with four bags of groceries, dropping one in the parking lot and not bothering to pick it up. that's essentially what we are doing in our homes today. >> it's a growing issue with an impact reaching far beyond ourle wallets. >> people think environmental problems are about smokestacks, roads, factories, cities and concrete. for sure those are significant. but if you look at the earth from the sky what you see is fields. it is there that we have had the biggest impact. wasting a third of the land and all of that energy that we currently use by wasting the food that we have produced is one of the most gratuitous aspects of oh human culture as it stands today.
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>> film makers jenny rustamire and grant baldwin dove in with a challenge. for six months they would only eat food that would otherwise be wasted. dumpster diving and scouring supermarkets for rejected produce. "just eat it" producerers join me mow. thank you for being here. >> thanks for having are us. >> i was saying i was prepared to be really grossed out oh. i thought you would go into dumpsters for a half eaten apple or something. that isn't what uh you found. >> that's it. this is a stigma with things like food waste. people think it is disgusting but it is surplus food. there is nutritious edible food in the landfill. it should be feeding hungry people. >> why is the food being thrown away? >> a lot of the food we found was thrown away because it was close to the date label. people think it is about a safety date. it's just about peak freshness. nothing to do with safety at
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all. >> is there a good reason to have that date visible to the public wen you go into a store? my teenaged son lives by that date. if it's a day later he's not eating it. is there a reason to have it shown to us? >> for most it's about stock rotation, really for the grocery stores so they make sure they are not leaving things on the shelf for too long. as individuals we can use our senses more and use better common sense. >> we are talking now about household food waste. let's talk about on farms. this is not, as your documentary said, the leading cause of food waste, but what about the food that's thrown away? there was a shot in the film about a mountain of bananas because they weren't the perfect shape. how much of that's going on? >> there is ton thes of it going on. the banana example is also an example of a peach grower we met in california. he throws away between 30 and 70% of his peaches because they are not the right shape, color or they have a blemish on them.
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>> how much of this is the consumer essentially demanding perfect-looking food? >> here is where the controversy comes in. stores say people demand perfect food. we are saying give people choice. try to sellingly vegetables and see if people will buy them if they are educated about the situation. >> you talked to at least one person trying to salvage the food and do something with it. are there organizations that are looking in dumpsters? it was incredible to see in the film packaged food in dumpsters. not opened food, but packaged food thrown a way. >> there is a store opening in chicago by the former ceo of trader joe's. he'll mitigate all the food from grocery stores that's near date and sell it in this store for lower income people so they can shop for 70% off. >>le getting back to our households which is is number one source of food waste, give us advice for parents, people who have food in the fridge that their family is saying left overs, don't want it.
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how can we reimagine how we think about that food? >> that's the ahazing thing. there are many things we can do. we can start by using our freezers. if you have too much of a meal you're not sure you want to eat left overs. stick it in the freezer, bring it out next week as a new meal. >> you cooked at the end this fabulous meal. were your friends as reluctant as i was going in to watch the documentary when you said we are going to eat repursed food. it will be great. >> people raise ared their eyebrows and didn't bring it up until they saw the food we were finding. they would come over to the house and they would open the pantry, look under the spare bed, there are cases of tood. help yourself. that's when people said okay that is big deal. >> it's amazing. do you have food left? >> we have a little bit left. we found a lot of chocolate. we went off the chocolate after months of oh eating chocolate every day. >> my dad still asks me. do you have any chocolate left ? >> also your dentists are
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probably glad. thank you so much. really appreciate it. once again the film debuts on msnbc this wednesday at 10:00 p.m. eastern and right here. we want to see what you will do to waste less food. share your response in a video or in a photo with the hashtag # no food wasted. up next michelle obama calls her words beautiful and powerful. acclaimed poet elizabeth alexander comes to talk about her new memoir.
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doug. you've been staring at that for awhile, huh? listen, td ameritrade has former floor traders to help walk you through that complex trade. so you'll be confident enough to do what you want. i'll pull up their number. blammo. let's get those guys on the horn. oooo looks like it is time to upgrade your phone, douglass. for all the confidence you need. td ameritrade. you got this. on friday the white house celebrated national poetry month by hosting a workshop for student authors and a reading by celebrated poet elizabeth alexander. in 2009 she wrote and delivered her original work "praise song for the day" at the inauguration of president obama. during friday's white house
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celebration alexander moved to tears when she read from her memoir called "the light of the world." in the book she shares the story of the sudden death of oh her husband. he died just four days after his 50th birthday party. alexander's memoir is about love understanding, grief and acceptance as she navigates life without her partner. perhaps first lady michelle obama describes tim ss the impact of the oh words best spp hers was the kind of oh grief that would leave most of us unable to function normally. yet she took all that grief and transformed it into something beautiful and powerful. not just for herself but for anyone who has ever lost someone they love. so this book is not just an achievement for her. it's also a lifeline for others who are overwhelmed by their own grief. >> i'm pleased to welcome
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elizabeth alexander to the table. good morning. thank you for being here. >> i'm so glad to be here joy. >> just reading your words there is an excerpt of your book in the new yorker to get a sense of your writing and of uh you. what did come through for me is how universal the experience uh you described is. you can connect with it whether the loved one you lost is a partner, a mother a child. you really universalize this process. when you were writing it were you thinking in the universal or deeply in the personal? >> i was thinking in the absolute particular. i think the universal always resides in the particular. if we start there with what we know carefully on oh served wie we love what we love wie it matters to us then we give something that's so alive and dynamic that it has meaning to other people. i'm moved to discover it seems to be true. >> what's evocative about the writing is you go into beautiful detail about the life of oh your husband. you describe him as a living
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being and a living person. then you describe the separation between that living soul and the body in the end. when you think back and look at your husband do you dwell in the grief or are you able to experience him as a whole living person? >> i think you have to move forward. you have to live. we are alive. we are here. every day is a gift and a blessing. that's the way with i want to show my children how to live. what i find beautiful sven when you lose the body and the tremendous crushing grief that comes along with that there is so much that you are our loved ones give us that's indel able. it never goes away. in some ways it blossoms as we carry it forward as we share stories, as we live and walk in the steps of the things that we cherished with the one we loved. >> we saw the response of the first lady to your words. what's been the response of people to the part of the book they have read so far? >> it's been extraordinary. i have hundreds and hundreds of
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e-mails from strangers in response to the new yorker excerpt. when i read the book people come and want to talk mostly not about losing spouses but about all kinds of loss. loss and grief are common denominators for human beings. the fact we won't always stay on this earth is a common denominator. we are all trying to find meaning in that. we are trying to find comfort. and we are trying to think what is this thing called life? how do we live it purposefully? that's what loss sometimes teaches us. >> yeah. indeed. you found lottery tickets after your husband died. that was significant to you. can you talk about the significance of it? then i will ask you to read from your book. >> yes. after you discover many things in the space that you share after someone departs. that's often very wrenching and poignant. sometimes also i would find things that would make me laugh and shake my head. i would open a book and out
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would come lottery tickets. like confetti. he loved the lottery. he believed if luck in possibility. he was a little bit of a magical realist. so there they were reminding me. i would say, do you have to buy -- maybe one would be okay. i would find a bumpblnch of then. it was a lovely way to remember his presence. >> could you read -- there is a poem called "the light of the world" in the book. >> yes. this is a section from the book. he who believed in the lottery. he who did not leave a large carbon footprint. he who never met a child he didn't enchant. he who loved to wear the color pink. he whose children made him laugh until he cried. he who never told a lie. he who majored in physics who knew the laws of the universe. he who wanted to win the lottery
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for me. >> elizabeth alexander, the book is "the light of the world." it can be purchased this week. it is a wonderful ry much for being here. >> thank you very much. >> thank you. up next you will hear from president bill clinton who spoke this morning because of what happened on this day 20 years ago.
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on this day exactly 20 years ago, the country was rocked by the worst domestic terrorism attack in american history. the bombing of the alfred p. murrah federal building in oklahoma city. earlier this morning a remembrance ceremonies of held in oklahoma city in honr of the 168 people killed in the blast. former president bill clinton among the many national and local officials who spoke. the attendees also observed 168 seconds of silence. one second for each person
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killed on that fateful day when a truck carrying a home made bomb blew up outside the federal building. the explosion was so powerful it obliterated 1/3 of the building and damaged or destroyed more than 300 nearby sites. the human toll was staggering. among the 168 killed, 19 children who were inside the federal building's daycare center. in the immediate aftermath of the bombing some in the media speculated that the attack was the work of foreign terrorist. within 48 hours, a new face of terror emerged, and it was from right here at home. timothy mcveigh, a former soldier and anti-government extremist, was arrested. his co-conspirator, terry nichols, turned himself in. in 2001 mcveigh became the first person executed for a federal crime in the u.s. in nearly 40 years. terry nichols is still serving a life sentence in a super maximum security facility in colorado. their act of terrorism made the nation rethink the notion of who
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is a threat to america and strengthened the country's travel confront our enemies both foreign and domestic. it also put a spotlight on the resilience of oklahoma city. a spirit reflected in the simple yet stirring memorial built in honor of the victims and in today's remember bran ceremony which was called "a program of hope and healing." former president clinton paid tribute to that spirit this morning. >> not because you forgot the loss of loved ones, but because you remembered. not because the pain and loss and love have worn away with time, but because they endure and the only way you can redeem the loved ones is to live by the standard you have branded. it has been magnificent to behold.
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i urge you never to forget it. >> a fitting tribute to oklahoma city and the 168 people who died in the bombing that forever changed our country on this day, april 19th, 1995. that is our show for today. thanks to you at home for watching. be sure to tune in to "hardball" with chris matthews this tuesday night on msnbc. chris has a big interview with none other than president barack obama. now it's time for a preview of "weekends with alex witt." hello, thank you very much. well, everyone there's an update on the stalled confirmation of loretta lynch. new word from capitol hill that the logjam may soon be cleared. new questions about what was left out of the brit mchenry videotape and whether it kept the whole story from being told. it's a possible solution to california's drought, but will it cause more environmental problems? i'll speak with the mayor of one town to hear what he thinks. california's measles crisis is over. the vaccine fight continues. this morning, hear from a mother of seven who refused to
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tragedy on the high seas. hundreds missing after a ferry capsizes. a desperate search is underway. how it apparently happened might surprise you. the road to 2016 running through new hampshire. the gop facing some tough questions in the granite state about an issue that may dog them throughout. a growing backlash in schools across this country. in one community, more than half the students this week are refusing to take standardized test. we'll tell you why. global citizen to me is to be conscious of the world around you. >> the global citizen festival. you'll hear more of what is meant for some of today's biggest stars who attended.


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