tv Melissa Harris- Perry MSNBC November 29, 2015 7:00am-9:01am PST
good morning, i'm melissa harris-perry. the iowa caucuses are now just 64 days away. it will be the first major electoral event of the nominating process for the next president of the united states kicking us into high election season. yes, looks like pre-season is wrapping up and now it is time for voters to get to actually know their choices. it's been a bit of a hard election season on the republican side to really get to know the candidates because, well, there's just a lot of them. and also, this has mostly been a campaign of distraction, shall we say, a campaign driven by unlikely outsider candidates whose very appeal seems to be their lack of experience or policy depth. we watch and wonder as they say ridiculous, often offensive things, and that leaves us little time for the rest of the field. the gop's inability to remove the distractions has been the
ongoing splpolitical surprise sy line of the year because the republican party is usually pretty orderly in its success n succession, viewing its to to the "next in line" allowing candidate to build a strong campaign and win, good on paper governors like jeb bush with his family legacy, or new jersey governor chris christie, former head of the republican governors association and candidate party leaders yearned to see run back in 2012. even wisconsin governor scott walker with his blue-collar populist appeal before dropping out of the race in september. but none of these logical, reasonable choices has managed to break through the crowded chaotic class of 16 field. instead the leading contenders are a former neurosurgeon and a reality tv star. that is until now. because now the spotlight shines on ted cruz. remember him? the junior senator from texas, the former police sore general
who argued in front of the supreme court, princeton and harvard law educated, son of a cuban immigrant. senator cruz may have gained most of his national notoriety by rhyming. last september he staged a 21-hour quasi full bluilibuster part of his time to read this to his two young daughters who were supposedly tuned in to c-span? >> do you like green eggs and ham? i do not like them, sam, i am. i do not like green eggs and ham. would you like them here or there? i would not like them here or there, i would not like them anywhere. i do not like green eggs and ham. i do not like them, sam i am. >> outside his antics, he's known as a conservative firebrand buoyed by the tea
party support. here's a snapshot of where he stands. same-sex marriage, he wants to deny it. obamacare, he wants to repeal it. planned parenthood, he wants to defund it. irs, he wants to demolish. this week he emerged from the crowded gop field feeling more less like an unknown. ted cruz currently climbing in the policy in especially in iowa. new polling from quinnipiac university puts cruz near the top of the field in the state with 23 percentage points inside the margin of error on donald trump's 25%. while according to the evangelical vote, he's picked up the endorsement of steve king raising a lot of money trailing only jeb bush and hillary clinton. yes, we are still little more than two months away from the first votes cast but silly season is over.
it is go time and the field is starting to take shape and texas senator ted cruz repudiated by his colleagues in the senate for his antics, the man who brags not about leading a government but about shutting government down, who until last year held duel citizenship in canada, that ted cruz is looking more and more like a real contender. with the poll numbers, the money and the organization to go the distance. joining me, dorian warren, an msnbc contributor and susan perior, raul reyes, and -- susan, can an outsider like a carson or trump actually win in a place like iowa where we used to think you had to have actual
strategy and machine? >> there is a difference between what trump's doing, what carson's doing and what ted cruz is doing. trump is speaking at as many people as possible. he's not meeting them one-on-one, he's not listening to what they have to say but he's speaking to them so he has these huge rallies and gets all this coverage and that's working for him so far. then you have ben carson who is trying to do a little bit more, has the money for an organization but really hasn't gone into it and now we're seeing that because of his lack of credentials, it is really starting to hurt him. ted cruz, on the other hand, is going to every county, 99 counties. he's doing another town hall tomorrow even though he has this big bump in the polls. he's not taking anything for granted. nationwide he has 100,000 volunteers. this is building up a machine. and the biggest difference i'd say between ted cruz and donald trump right now is donald trump doesn't know what it takes to run a campaign face to face. he doesn't have -- he doesn't
get what people want from him. because he's never been a candidate. ted cruz gets it. he knows what it is to be in a primary. he knows what it is to be in a run-off. he knows that he go press the flesh especially in a state like iowa. >> this idea especially in a place like iowa. the caucuses -- basically these folks are professional voters and they are used to a particular kind of candidacy even if they claim they want an outsider to the process. >> they expect it in places like iowa and new hampshire, it is hard for us in say like new york to even imagine this but they are used to meeting candidates one-on-one -- >> multiple times! >> multiple times. they expect that. but the thing is at that point donald trump has just rewritten all the rules. all the talk that we've heard all summer that at a certain point a serious candidate was going to emerge or grown-up was going to emerge, it may or may not happen. even if we look at ted cruz, someone is emerging but he is not that "grown-up" that people
expected it to be. people thought it would be maybe jeb bush at some point or perhaps marco rubio. now it is ted cruz and it is just so bizarre! >> you think ted cruz is not the grown-up? let's listen again to ted cruz's statement. >> i do not like green eggs and ham, i do not like them, sam i am. >> i'm so shocked that you don't see him as the grown-up in the room. >> one of the things that's happening here especially post citizens united is you see the parties basically playing less of a role and outside money playing more of a role. ted cruz in some ways is more the thing that we feared with enormous amounts of hedge fund money, pro fracking money, coming in. actually a lot of silicon valley libertarian money. google, facebook pac both supported ted cruz earlier and peter thiel from silicon valley have all backed cruz. he has not a lot of traditional
republican party but i would say quasi anarchistic -- >> if money were the issue then you would have seen scott walker doing better. jeb bush. the waencandidates need to find way of connecting with the voters especially in early voting states. >> when you say he's in some ways more of what we feared and yet i have learned to fear new things. right? it is one thing to deeply disagree with a party or with a candidate and yet feel like they are perfectly capable of governing. i guess i'm not sure with cruz. i look at someone at a marco rubio or jeb bush, again, deep ideological disagreements but i don't fear that they could make executive decisions from the oval office. with ted cruz, given the kind of glee in shutting down the government, i guess i'm not quite sure if i should fear it in the way i do a real outsirt
like trump or carson or fished see him as just a version of a candidate who i disagree with but who i think is quite confident. >> i'm not quite sure we should fear him yet. i think ted cruz was the first candidate to jump in the primary race in march. political scientists showed of the first four primary states he was most in line with republican primary voters so this isn't a shock that he's come up in the polls. >> dorian, he was most in line with republican primary voters? >> in march. absolutely. >> i would like to hear again mr. cruz's statement? >> i do not like green eggs and ham, i do not like them, sam i am. >> but that -- >> but here's the thing about -- he owes his rise to donald trump because as a political scientist says, you don't have to win the nomination to win the conversation. trump changed the conversation around immigration and most of the -- the vast majority of the primary voters that are most
active, their intensity of preference is around immigration, the support goes to trump. >> so they would vote for a canadian? no, no. look. he just is a canadian. it just -- like there isn't any question tat man was born in canada and that is fine with me. but i will just say that there was a sort of hounding of our current president for years about whether or not he was born -- >> president obama wasn't born here either and republican voters decided to debunk that. >> but putting that aside, there is one other thing. your concerns when you say there are candidates you couldn't agree with but see hem leading? guess who you share that same view with? the republican establishment. >> up next the evangelical angle. you'd be shocked at the things we agree on.
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the promise of america seems more and more distant. what is the promise of america? the idea that the revolutionary idea that this country was founded upon which is that our rights, they don't come from man. they come from god almighty. >> that was senator ted cruz in march just moments before officially announcing his 2016 presidential bid. the address was at liberty university in lynchburg, virginia, the largest christian university in the world. he really has done a good job on -- in that particular space. more than 200 faith leaders having endorsed him for president. just announcing that his
formation of a national prayer team. so there's going to be sort of national leaders who will be doing these. so this is real strategy in the context of a republican primary. >> yeah. again, i want to return to this sort of strange marriage between the sort of libertarian quasi anarchistic donors, and then the sort of deep faith leaders that you see in cruz. i find a lot of what he's talking about very disturbing, including his response to the refugee moment recently was to say we should not allow in syrians who are -- syrian refugees who are muslim but allow in syrian refugees who are christians. there is really -- it is not just a faith but a pretty deep religious bigotry that he's expressing. >> also listen to what he said about that point ever kind of radical islam as a cursive statement. >> imagine a president who says we will stand up and defeat
radical islamic terrorism. and we will call it by its name. >> i find that troubling as well. defeating terrorism. sure. but i mean i think we just saw -- literally just saw in the colorado shooting that acts of terror are not about one religious identity. >> but that goes back to the trump effect. if it weren't this bizarre primary field this year, trump has pulled things so far to the right that now ted cruz to a lot of people looks the "moderate" candidate. as he pointed out in the intro, he's known for obstructionism, shutting down the government, absolutely inflammatory rhetoric. but by comparison to the people in the field, he's now presenting himself as the
electable candidate, as a reasonable alternative candidate, a role that many many thought should have gone to bush. the talk about the primary voters coming to their senses, this is where they are. maybe me hathey have righted themselves. >> does the gop essentially really want cruz? marco rubio was the last person we were talking about. >> i don't think you're going to see ked truz ted cruz go all th. if he's peaking this early, the iowa primary is a month later than it normally is so it is very early for him to peak this high because he will be torn down. when you are in the spotlight, people will -- you are a target. does he want to be a target of donald trump? it will be very interesting to see how their relationship which has been a bit of a bromance will now evolve. he did go after trump about the muslim registry. he said that was inappropriate but this is a man who will go all the way to an extreme.
he called president obama -- now i disagree, but he called him the largest supporter of state sponsored terrorism. that's absurd! that shouldn't fly. >> he says he doesn't want to defend the country. >> that is unacceptable. you can have a different point of view but not that extreme. that's what he's known for. that's what people are afraid of because you can't rely on him to do something responsible. >> this question of sort of something responsible, the "new hampshire union leader" endorsed chris christie and did it with discourse about national security, saying, now that the paris attacks have happened, now that we're in this moment we need a real grown-up, someone who will do something responsible and that is chris christie. does that create a space for kind of the grown-ups in the room to show up? >> i think so because they also in that endorsement attack those candidates from the private sector. so donald trump and carly fiorina. because they don't have the experience as a christie as governor. >> they all go attack all the
senators by also attacking the president. they said we don't need a young senator because that's what we have now and it is a terrible thing. >> it is an interesting priming. what they've done in that endorsement of chris christie is put international terrorism or foreign terrorism -- not domestic terrorism in terms of the attack on planned parenthood. but one thing that's interesting about cruz and this is a structural change in the republican party over the last several decades, in 1980 there was only one debate. now there is six. ted cruz is an excellent debater so this -- >> is he an excellent debater? i would like to hear once again mr. cruz speaking. >> i do in the like green eggs and ham, i do not like them, sam i am. >> up next, a democrat won in the south and not just in the
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one of the biggest political surprises of the year happened just last week when louisiana elected a democrat as its next governor. john bel edwards will be the first democratic governor in all of the deep south since former louisiana governor kathleen blanco left office in 2008. political insiders had expected republican senator david vitter to cruise to an easy victory, the democrats decided against running because their chances would be so slim. edwards surprised everyone by winning the open primary last month with 40% of the vote and then he soundly beat vitter in the run off by 12 points. john, how did y'all do it? >> it's interesting. we worked for an independent
expenditure, not directly for his campaign. two of the keys were the candidate got a very early start. he started running two and three years out which i think is a model for other candidates in very competitive, if not red areas. and also there wiere a number o independent expenditure groups that came together and helped him early in that primary around the runoff that were key. then also you had david vitter as an opponent. he had big problems going into the race, then a huge scandal broke by an investigative blogger that blew things up. then there was a candidate with a great profile, military veteran. army ranger. west point. and also he was pro life, pro gun which mitigated some of the late attacks that vitter and his super pacs tried to volley at him. >> for folks who weren't following this race -- i know this isn't an ad that your group did, but this was an extraordinary ad that points out
i think the candidate nature as opposed to the ideological nature of this race. let's just take a look at what i think is one of the best ads of the year. >> the choice for governor couldn't be more clear. john bel edwards who answered our country's call and served as a ranger in the 82nd airborne division. or david vitter who answered a prostitu prostitute's call minutes after he skipped a vote monitoring 28 soldiers who gave their lives in defense of our freedom. . david vitter chose prostitutes over patriots. now the choice is yours. >> man, i mean i hardly -- like i can hardly even believe that happened in the world. so let me ask you this, john. so given that you can make -- that someone can make an ad prostitutes over patriots in this case, is this actually a story that can be bigger? is this something about how democrats can run in the south? or is this really just like if you're running against a guy who
answered a prostitute's call instead of taking a vote -- >> well, democrats didn't beat him in 2010 when a lot of this information was out there so there are certainly things to replicate the profile of the candidate, forming of third parties to match all the republican third parties being very aggressive against vitter. i think that ad needed a disclaimer of -- strong words to follow -- probably before it aired. then the other thing is, the organization we're involved with, louisiana families first, is also very focused on motivating african-american voters and the field program and black turnout was higher in the jungle primary and in the runoff as they call it in louisiana. >> hold on. zephyr, i want to let you in on the money piece. >> i'm thrilled edwards run but there is not a good development for democrats in the deep -- small d democratic sense or big d democratic sense because outside money funders are going to be hedge funders, not focused
on core democratic populist issues. it is not about politics that is actually about roads, bridges, schools and the basics in our society. so i don't think there is any celebration in the use of outside groups. >> john, it just occurred to me as somebody who's lived in new orleans, when you say jungle primary, i hear something different than what the rest of the world might have just heard when you said it. can you please explain that? >> this race proved it is one of the more fascinating places to watch politics. in louisiana, democrats and republicans are on the ballot together in the first race and in the second race so there's no the a conventional democratic primary so you could have gone in and voted for the d or the r and so there were three strong republican candidates and john bel edwards, and in terms of what was said about the independent expenditures, in this case anyway that wasn't really the case in terms of a lot of the people that were supporting some of these efforts. i guess as progressives and on the democratic side we've got a
choice to make, do we want to unilaterally disarm or do we want to be competitive in terms of spending. vitter he a super pac still incredibly outspent the democratic side of things so they were payable to prevail. >> strategists -- a win is a win so i hand it over. that was a well done race from edwards' side. however, it is very interesting to see in 2015 that race happening when you see nationally where the progressive movement on the democratic side is moving. don't forget, i wonder how governor-elect edwards is going to do being -- he doubled down on being pro life. he doubled down on being pro gun. he moved very much away from president obama. >> no, see, i think he didn't. >> he's quoted saying i am not like national democrats. that's what -- >> he did say i'm not like national democrats but unlike so many of the southern dems who in the mid-terms ran hard against the president, they actually in this case recognize that black voters -- i mean when you look
at -- am i wrong that african-american turnout in this off-year election was one of the highest in an off-year election? >> that's four or five points up. >> that's great political strategy. i will give you that, that's great political strategy, great outreach, there were some great ads done in that race. bup that's not necessarily saying just because you do outreach in those communities mean you're saying i am with the president's agenda. it means you are doing a very smart retail campaign. >> 20% approval rating, even majority of republicans don't like him. that's sort of flipping the script because in the past republicans liked to tie candidates to president obama. this time they did it with such a massively unpopular governor. >> the main thing to take away from this, is the point i've heard you make a million times.
you've got to run to win and democrats have to actually challenge in the south instead of just continuing to just give over all of those races. thank you to my guests. still to come this morning, first trial for the officers charged in the death of freddie grey is about to begin. up next, we want to get you the latest on the suspected gunman in the shooting in the colorado springs planned parenthood. the thing is, about half of men over 40 have some degree of erectile dysfunction. well, viagra helps guys with ed get and keep an erection. ask your doctor if your heart is healthy enough for sex. do not take viagra if you take nitrates for chest pain or adempas® for pulmonary hypertension. your blood pressure could drop to an unsafe level. to avoid long-term injury, seek immediate medical help for an erection lasting more than four hours. stop taking viagra and call your doctor right away if you experience a sudden decrease or loss in vision or hearing.
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those sources say deer said many things to law enforcement, including references to president obama and politics and that a motive has not been determined. dear is expected to appear in court tomorrow. joining me now from colorado springs, nbc news correspondent leanne gregg. what else do we know at this point about dear's background? >> reporter: well, melissa, the picture emerging is of a man who's reclusive, who sought solitude in the carolinas. most recently he lived in a very small town 65 miles west of colorado springs in a travel trailer with a woman with no electricity. neighbors said he is a mystery, that he kept to himself, even in a small town, very few people actually say they know him. his criminal past shows that he has several arrests, everything including domestic violence against his then-wife. that was back in the '90s. also a peeping tom arrest in connection with looking at a neighbor. law enforcement described his
statements following his arrests on friday as rantings. in addition to that comment about "no more body parts," he also talked about president obama, he said, and many other subjects and went on and on. while police do continue to stress that it is too early to name a motive, planned parenthood officials say that they believe he targeted the facility because he opposes abortion. they say that because witnesses comments that he made while he was in the facility. meanwhile across the city today, all across the congregations and churches, people are offering prayers on this first sunday after the attack for the victims and for everyone involved in the violence on friday. that as the gunman remains in jail without bond. again his first court appearance is scheduled for tomorrow. >> nbc's leanne gregg in colorado springs, colorado. thank you. up next -- will there be justice for freddie grey?
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tomorrow the trial is set to begin for the first of six officers charged in the april death of freddie grey. grey died from a critical neck injury that he sustained in police custody after arresting officers placed him handcuffed and shackled but unsecured in to the back of a police van. officer william g. porter is accused of failing to seek medical attention for grey's injuries and faces charges of manslaughter, second degree assault, misconduct in office and reckless eng dangdangerment. a baltimore judge expects 75 to 80 jurors to appear tomorrow for the task of picking 12 jurors to give a fair consideration to the evidence and testimony amid a local and national climate of heightened attention to cases involving police use of force. with me now, dorian warren, msnbc contributor and host of
"nerding out," and seema ire, host of "the docket," and a criminal defense attorney who was formerly a prosecutor in the bronx district attorney's office. and raul reyes. >> the first thing they're going to ask the jurors in the jury poll have you been exposed to the riots. that's really important. and what side they fell on. the other big issue which is always an issue i think when you're trying cases involving police witnesses is their feelings towards law enforcement. then finally, what do you know about the case and is that going to affect your ability to be fair and impartial. >> there has been a lot of effort on the part of the defense attorneys to move this out baltimore and this judge keeps saying, no, we're going to do this here. >> the judge is absolutely
right. because moving -- when you take a trial and you move it to another venue, that's really an extraordinary thing and it is not to be taken lightly especially in this case. it has to do with, for example, the issues of bias, the issues of what constitutes acceptable police behavior in a high-crime neighborhood and when does that behavior cross the line into criminality. these are people who have lived there may know in a way people in the suburbs cannot. it also needs to be in baltimore not only because the jury needs to look like baltimore but because studies have shown -- even studies done in baltimore, for example, juries in the city in urban areas reach far different verdicts than jurors in suburban neighbors so it belongs there. if the jury pool does not represent baltimore -- i think baltimore is 60%, 65% black. if -- the jury will not be seen as legitimate. it needs to stay there. >> i want to come out a little
bit from the actual trial. dorian, it feels like this is not just a trial around freddie grey's case. this is the first time in this kind of big arc of the black lives matter movement when an officer has been held accountable at trial for the death of an unarmed african-american. how important is sort of the process here for a sense that some level of justice is possible? >> it is the miner's canary in terms of fairness in the criminal justice system when it comes to race. the nation will be watching this trial to really try to understand is the system, is the justice system inevitably corrupt? or is there any kind of transparency and justice that black folks can actually win? so think about ferguson and what happened there. think about chicago last week in terms of taking -- >> but when you frame it as black folks though, it is worth pointing out that this officer
is also african-american, that this -- lots of things about baltimore are different. right? but like the speed with which this case -- we don't have charges in the tamir rice case, yet this one is already at trial. >> we talk about this in court sometimes. just because your client is black doesn't mean -- and the officer's black or the d.a.'s black doesn't mean it is going to help you. it really doesn't. >> everybody's black in this case! >> so we can remove that issue. >> but we can't really. right? so on one hand everybody's black and yet it doesn't make race not an issue -- >> no, no, not at all. but at least in my experience, i think the judge sometimes determines the fairness of the proceeding and i am incredibly confident with this judge that we will have a fair trial. >> and this is important, because this judge used to prosecute police misconduct for
the justice department. >> sir, this is a real thing. this is a former doj attorney who got convictions against police officers. >> he knows what to look for and he knows what constitutes acceptable conduct. but when you talk about the larger national issues, things like the movements around social justice, black lives matter, the thing that's so important to keep in mind is just that in these trials, all those things -- and i'm going to preface this by saying i think what was done to freddie grey was horrific -- those things are irrelevant. >> irrelevant? >> everything's relevant! >> no, it all turns on the case the prosecution makes. it is not going to turn on possible consequence. they have a high bar to clear to prove beyond a reasonable doubt -- >> listen, there are going to be jurors who are going to get on that jury because they have something to prove. they are politically motivated, socially motivated --
>> but potentially on both sides. right? >> oh, absolutely. >> they either want something to prove on the blm side and on the offic officer's side. >> you want to exclude them because then they're trying to make a come. >> they aren't always forthcoming. >> none of those jurors walk in with a blank slate. this issue is very salient in baltimore. they have experiences and feelings about the police whether the prosecution or defense can squeeze that out. >> i'm going to try to get you to just hold some of this until after the commercial break. when we come back, billy murphy joins us next. and surprise! those seats sometimes cost a ridiculous number of miles, making it really hard to book the flight you want. luckily, there's a better way... with the capital one venture card. with venture, you'll earn unlimited double miles on every purchase, every day. and when you're ready to travel, just book the flight you want, on any airline,
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baltimore's among the growing list of american cities where the death of an african-american while in police custody has prompted a demand for police accountability. baltimore stands out among those cities because seldom in these high-profile cases have we seen that demand answered quite like this. the justice system responded
fairly quickly in baltimore with baltimore city's state attorneys mary mosby announcing charges against all six officers involved with the grey arrest. almost seven months to the day since those charges were announced the first of six separate trials between now and march for each of the accused officers. joining me now, billy murphy, attorney for the family of freddie grey. we're talking that on the one hand in the kind of big movement around black lives matter baltimore's a space where just dislooks as though it may be possible. but i'm interested for the family of freddie gray what justice looks like. >> the family's very unusual. they don't have a particular result in mind like most people do who are watching. they don't want a guilty verdict. they don't want a not guilty
verdict. they want whatever is based on the evidence and the law in the fairest sense possible. they want the jury to be open-minded. they want them to listen closely to both sides. and then they want them to follow the law and come up with an evidence law-based verdict. not preconceived notions. because that's exactly what the problem is. people come in with biased ai attitudes in one way or another and people don't get justice that way so they want pure justice. >> this is a really interesting point. in part because you have six officers, they're going to be tried in separate trials and apparently some of the information will come out in the first trials will also be used as information in later trials. talk to me a little bit about that. >> well with be in multiple trials where basically you're talking about the same scenario over and over again. of course that's going to happen. people are going to understand better the second trial than they will understand the first trial.
then believe it or not, there are going to be some surprises in the first trial and they are going to be evidentiary approaches and theories that are sometimes counterintuitive. but in any event, which won't be expected by people who have been following the case. and that's because the one thing that's been missing in this dialogue is a factual discussion. that will happen before the second trial. but this trial is going to be shrouded in mystery until the evidence comes out. and that's a good thing in many ways. >> hold for me a second. in part, this idea -- this is very different language than what we've heard. what we want is for the system to actually work, see this thing we think of as the american system of justice where we present facts to actually play out. what's your sense about the likelihood of whether this could happen? >> i do think it could happen. severance is base on the defendants, each of the officers making these different statements and things are going to come out in officer porter's
trial that could be used against officer gordon and white, for instance. so i think that lends itself to fairness on a purely evidentiary level. . number two, i do think the judge -- judge billy, he may have more experience with judge barry williams so he would be able to tell us about him but i think we are in a position to have a fair judge. it is so important, melissa, i think to have a fair judge because that's where you get your rulings. if i am trying to put in evidence my prior relationship with freddie gray and the defense wants it in the prosecution doesn't, that's up to the judge to say, wait a minute, this is irrelevant, or it is relevant to the officer's state of mind when dealing with freddie gray. >> what do you think, mr. mur y murphy? is this a judge likely to make fair decisions? >> oh, absolutely. i've known him since he was a baby prosecutor years ago and i followed his career all through
its various stages and he's very thoughtful. he's very, very bright and he is an extraordinarily fair human being. but he's no nonsense 37 so you can expect that the trains will run on time and you can expect he won't let the lawyers grandstand or do the things that many of us are famous for and he will make sure that it is a dignified proceeding uninfluenced by outside events. i'm very confident in him. and to the extent that judges set the tone for cases, he's the right tone setter. >> you say unaffected by things that are happening on the outside, and yet, raul, this case, and the fact that there are six of them will undoubtedly impact what happens in the -- i mean baltimore is now going to go through six separate trials and whatever is happening for the family, this will be
undoubtedly emotional for the city. >> right. there's also two other factors that make this case very unusual. one is that because you have police officers on trial. think about it. normally, for example, if you're on the prosecution side, you want people who self-identify as law and order type people. you want people who tend to support the police. you want people who can't imagine themselfves in the shoe of the defendant. there's already been a civil settlement with the freddie gray family. usually that comes afterwards, so some could say that could possibly bias jurors and say it is some type of admission of guilt but it could also play the other way. because if they're on the fence, they could say the family's already gotten this in the form of justice so let's just go not guilty. so these two factors also play in to this and i think it's going to be -- as we go through
the trials, they will have a role. >> i have an unfair question to ask with such brief time but we keep hearing about the ferguson effect as this chilling effect on the ways in which officers are doing their work on the ground. i wonder if finally seeing a baltimore set of cases here will impact how police officers are thinking potentially in ways that are good, that are pro justice. >> there's no ferguson effect when you look at the data and evidence. one. two, this is a question about public accountability in terms of those charged with enforcing public safety. i hope every officer in this country is watching this case very closely to understand that not just in baltimore but potentially in other places they will be held accountable for any misconduct of crimes they commit against civilians. >> there's actually more likelihood there will be a chicago effect given the recentsy of those events. very sad story in chicago. >> hopefully what that chicago effect is with being is if you have a tape, don't wait a year
to release it. thanks to judge billy murphy in baltimore. still to come this morning, if your kid is home but headed back to college later today, you could let them sleep -- or you could go grab them and wake them up because up next, race on campus. what our young people are facing and how they're handling it. i just don't eat the way i should. so i drink boost to get the nutrition that i'm missing. boost complete nutritional drink has 26 essential vitamins and minerals, including calcium and vitamin d to support strong bones and 10 grams of protein to help maintain muscle. all with a great taste. i don't plan on slowing down any time soon. stay strong. stay active with boost. now try new boost® compact and 100 calories. so don't trust your smile to any regular toothpaste. improved crest 3d white brilliance removes 5 times more stains than the red box.
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welcome back. i'm melissa harris-perry. this weekend demonstrators in chicago and seattle took to the streets to protest the killings of unarmed black people by police. they disrupted the typically care-free early shopping days of the holiday season to draw attention to inequities in policing, criminal justice and incarceration. streets of major american cities are not the only places where protests and calls for racial justice have emerged. for more than a year many american campuses have been sites of student organizing and direct action protests. first we saw social media
campaigns addressing microaggressions. in recent weeks campus protests have grown more urgent and widespread. nowhere more so than at the university of missouri in columbia just a short drive from ferguson where police responsibility to be citizen protests galvan iized the black live matter movement. in mizzou the resignation of the president of the university system, tim wolfe. after a group of student activists called for him to resign after what they say was his failure on multiple occasions to respond to their ongoing attempts to bring attention to issues of racial injustice at the school. on november 2nd, jonathan butler, a graduate student and member of the group amplified their call with a hunger strike that he said would continue until wolfe left office. and then, on november 7th, african-american members of
mizz mizzou's football team announced they'd boycott the season until wolfe "resigns or is removed due to his negligence toward marginalized student experiences." woe wolfe stepped down two days later. the mizzou protests have been followed by actions at the student's most elite universities. many turned out en masse to highlight their experiences of feeling marginalized on their campuses and to call on administrators to meet their own list of demands. this is not the first time political protests in american cities have been accompanied by movements on college campuses.
college students were among the vanguard of the civil rights leadership. much of the vietnam anti-war movement was organized on college campuses. in the '60s an '70s, student move the led to the emergence of black study departments. the following decades thousands of school activists called for schools to divest in south africa. today protests are focused on the experience students say they're having on their own campuses. in march students at the video of oklahoma emerged showing students at a fraternity engaging in a racially offensive
chant. they be students insist that these incidents are symptomatic of campus cultures that nominally value inclusion but fall short of cultivating that inclusivity in meaningful ways. some critics even say it is little more than hurt feelings of the coddled millennials. others as the result of political correctness run amok. for those of us who believe colleges are laboratories for democracy there is much to herald and much to critique in current campus organizing because college should be hard. part of college experience should be encountering ideas and opinions both inside and outside of the classroom that challenge everything you thought you knew or believed. it's meeting people you disagree with and who might sometimes, hurt your feelings. but also disrupt your world view, inspire you to think and think again. in these ways college should be hard. but college should also be safe. now safety doesn't stifle debate
or disagreement or even attempt to protect you from discomfort. safety actually allows for debate and disagreement by ensuring that students can explore and engage without enduring the kind of mental, physical or soul-deep assaults that can leave lasting scars. meaningful diversity helped cultivate colleges that are both safe and hard but the last decade has seen a trend towards more economically and racially homogenous campuses. in 1985, 75% of freshman slots at the country's elite universities were held by white students. in 2013, 84% of full-time professors on campuses were white and the vast majority white men. in 2003 the century foundation found almost three-quarters of students entering tier 1 colleges and universities come from the wealthiest families but only 3% of students from the poorest families attend those same top schools. college can't be hard.
it can't push us to think in new ways and encounter new ideas if it doesn't give us the chance to encounter those who are different from ourselves. and college can't be safe and create challenging spaces for exploration and experimentation unless it nurtures tangible manifestations of substantive diversity. joining me now, khalil mohammed, director of the shaumberg center for research and black culture. professor josh guild, allison hobbs, and julian vasquez healy, professor of educational leadership and policy studies at california state sacramento and the california naacp education chair. so nice to have you guys here. like a college professor festival. josh, i want to start with you.
it was written of these student protests often they are the kind of condescension in how we talk about it. actually they're not just college students. these are college stunldents wh have identities. >> these are young people who are politicized in the current moment. these are young people who are coming out of black live matter movement. this is the trayvon martin generation. this is the michael brown generation. so we can't separate the outside world from the campus world. these things are intimately related. these are also young people who are thinkers. these are intellectuals and they're mounting an intellectual debate on our campuses and our society. i think that's what is so profound about this current moment. >> so i love the idea that that is true. but there are moments in what i am seeing that i'm not certain that it feels like an outgrowth of the black lives matter movement. let me just say that for me, one
example is the extent to which many of these demands -- not all of them and not at every campus, but on some campuses seem to lack some of the institutional structural claims that they are often claims about recognition. wrote a whole book about recognition. i don't mean that it is irrelevant but that it doesn't quite feel to me like the claims happening in communities around structural change. >> well, i think that it is moving in two directions and i think it is hard to pin down. one of the things that anchors all of this for me is thinking about the dream defenders. this is an organization that is started in the wake of the zimmerman acquittal. they occupied rick scott's office. this grows to represent college students on nine different campuses. at this very moment it is continuing to do that organizing work on those campuses and even extending to secondary school which is to say that we can't pick one side of it or the other. >> but they occupy rick scott's
office in order to make a claim go stand your ground, about a public policy. >> absolutely. but the point is, once the genie is out of the bottle you can't pan it down and say this is one thing and that's another, this is about structure, this is about identity. which is to say that the consciousness of those students on the florida campuses has fundamentally peaked and therefore different and they're going to see things now and going to speak to those challenges in ways that they might not have before. i also think it matters that occupy movement precedes even that movement and they claimed some -- the dream defenders which itself opened up a genie of representative tags and tactitac. when the police show up do they say come on, guys, back to the classroom or are they subject to the kind of brutal forms of oppression. those kinds of identity politics that played out even in the organizing on campus.
>> most of the white students were being pepper sprayed so there were these moments. i hear that you can't say some are legitimate and others aren't. i guess for me there are -- when i think about what a college campus is, the relationship between students and administrators is one part of it but there is -- also universities also contract. they contract with food service workers and janitorial workers. they have relationships with the communities in which they find themselves. some of these student movements are very much addressing those and many in fact also are not. >> i think that's a good point which is that our lives are connected. by lifting all boats i think it is very important that we look across these different movements and we think about how these movements are conjoined. the faculty for example in california are protesting that the fact that they haven't had wage increases since 2006. in those very same protests
students were shoulder to shoulder with the faculty in those protests. we have to understand that food service work workers on our campuses, students, professors, they were all in this same boat and we need to support these movements as allies. >> but we're not all -- okay. but we're not all in the same boat. it actually is a different thing to be a marginal food service worker on a college campus who is fired every summer because of the rules of how that university relates to that contract. than it is to be a sunt that goes home in the summer. those are different experiences that i think require acknowledging in a meaningful movement. >> as faculty, i'm now in an administrative role at california state and it is up to us to do right by the students and workers, in terms of diversity and inclusion.
it is typically faculty running these institutions. >> i think that this is -- what's so kind of fascinating and so important about this moment is that it feels like this is a moment where students are really grappling with what it means to be an active, engaged citizenry. and i think that students and the broader public are really thinking about what does it mean to live in this a democratic society and what does it mean to live in a democratic society in 2015 when demographics are changing, when we're seeing tremendous change in our society and i think that the students who are involved in these movements are both concerned about symbolism and about structure. and i think that those two can go together but that we have to be very careful and very sure
that in order to really make the kind of thorough going change that the students are calling for, that those structural changes, those curricular changes, those changes in terms of adding more diverse faculty, that those are not getting underestimated. >> we're going to ask a student when we come back whether or not any of that is true. .. can you help santa with a new data plan? sure thing... uh right now you can get 15 gigs of data for the price of 10. that's five extra gigs for the same price. looks like someone just made it to the top of the nice list. in that case, i want a new bicycle, a bike helmet, a basketball, a stuffed animal that talks when you squeeze it. and... yes, yes. i got your letter. we're good. oh. okay i was just making sure. get 15 gigs for the price of 10 now at at&t.
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steam vowed no the to play envelope wolfe stepped down. so wolfe stepped down. joining us now, payton head, president of the university of missouri's students association. >> thanks for having me. >> your facebook post is part of what's credited for helping to galvanize this movement at mizzou. talk to me a brlittle bit about what you saw as necessary for changing that you and your fellow students saw. >> for me this was the second incident that i had endured where i had been called out on my name. called the "n" word just walking across campus. so i was over it. it wasn't just about myself. it is about my friend who identifies as trans and walking down the street and being spit on. my friends who are muslims who wear hijobs and are called towel heads and terrorists as they
walk through campus. it is a problem and i think it is time now that we address this as much as possible. >> talk to me about what addressing it looks like. what are the things that you want from the university, from the administration, from the trakh facu faculty to make this a different kind of place. >> i think first and foremost our administrator need to be historians of institutioning a a whole. students are very temporary. four, five years, if we go on to grad school, maybe six or seven years. we're very temporary. we study, then rise to these leadership positions, then it is time for us to graduate once we fill out how to operate the institution. i think it is important now more than ever that our administrators learn about the institution as the whole, also some of the things that we've done wrong in the past because that gets into tra structural violence that exists on campus and we have to be able to figure out what exactly is put in place for students of different marginalized communities not to be able to be successful on
these college campuses. >> i think that's such an interesting and important point about we think of students as though they are this kind of permanent reality. right? students are always there. but you're cycling through typically much more swiftly than administration and faculty. josh, let me ask you a little bit about that. julian, you were saying faculty run the place. i think faculty run the place in some ways and sometimes also not in others. so what then is the role for example of faculty governance in engaging student protests? >> i think it varies from campus to campus and it is hard to make a general statement about that. i think faculty have to stand up and speak out when they can, speak back to administration. but being afy also often wear two hats. they're both administrators and faculty members. you also have to talk about could be continue gent fgent fa members who have less power than
say seniorprofessors. >> how is the work you're all doing on campus related to ferguson and around the country? >> yes. many of the different student activists at mizzou were in ferguson protesting. we have a good number of students that come from the ferguson area in st. louis. a big majority of our students are from the st. louis metropolitan area. so it is people who are from this area who feel this pain. i think one of the things that started the movement on our university's campus was when our university decided to not acknowledge what was happening just two hours away in ferguson and the effects it has on students who are currently attending the university. >> i remember so many of you saying that to me that you had the sense of, look, i'm at college. it is happening down the road. we have an expectation that our faculty, that our administration will provide a learning context for this moment.
>> yes. >> i want to say thank you to payton head from the missouri student association who is, however, home for the weekend in chicago. thank you for joining us and thank you for your continued work. up next, at princeton university, students protest over the racial climate. the media has largely been focused on one man. he's been dead for 90 years. when heartburn hits fight back fast tums smoothies starts dissolving the instant it touches your tongue and neutralizes stomach acid at the source
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your doctor should monitor your weight and may stop treatment. side effects may include diarrhea, nausea, upper respiratory tract infection, and headache. tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, and if you're pregnant or planning to be. ask your doctor about otezla today. otezla. show more of you. some black students and princeton university are making their observe demand for man tore cultural sensitivity training for faculty and for dedicated black space on campus and they are also demanding the university remove president woodrow wilson's name from the buildings. wilson was president of princeton before going on to be president of the united states. he was also a die-hard segregationist who praised the kkk and purged black workers from jobs. the administration now says it will consider changing the name of the woodrow wilson school of
public and international affairs. as a historian, where are you on the purging of these names? >> if that wasn't a loaded question. >> i'm sorry, you're at my table. >> first i want to acknowledge that there was real damage done by woodrow wilson. that is not in the abstraction. the "times" covered both in an op-ed and editorial the significance of that told through the story of john davis who worked at the government printing office for 30 years. his grandson, gordon davis, wrote about it. i want to put flesh on those bones because it matters. it also matters what is the institutional speech that we articulate to represent our values. because i think at the end of the day each of these campuses, princeton, yale, amhurst, all have to decide what their values on based on the democratic process, based on buy-in and socialization from other people. then they have to decide what story are we going to tell about ourselves? are we going to tell a story
that acknowledges the racism that woodrow wilson per ppetuar? are we going to both embrace this president and recognize that we don't want to perpetuate values of exclusion and denigration of other people as part of our future? the debate is whether to take the names off. thaels the choice that people at princeton or yale have to engage in because in that moment back to your young people, back to payton head, that's where the debate comes in. young people have to learn in college how to make an argument. they have to learn how to defend their ideas. it is not just that your ideas drop out of your mouth on to the world and everyone's like, yes, that's it. you have to come back and revise and continue to make that case and that's how you change the values of an institution. >> yet i will say, if i go right now to the center for african-american studies website at princeton university -- i'm
sorry, y'all became departments. the department of african-american studies at prince the first thing on their website on the left hand is a really nice seven-minute piece by you talking about wilson's legacy of structural racism. so if khalil's point is universities have to address these questions, it does appear -- >> it is all the function of the work these students have done. these students have kicked open the doors of this debate. you were at princeton for many years. wilson's name has on been the international school for public affairs for almost 70 years. i've been at princeton for almost a decade myself. this is not incidental racism or his personal views. these are his active views both as president of princeton where he discouraged black applicants, then as president of the united states, his viewing people of african and asian descent as inferior.
these students have made it a debate that's even possible to have this conversation, that within a period of weeks that the "new york times" editorial board would print an editorial that said "the case against woodrow wilson." that is about an intellectual argument. it is not about feelings. >> yet for me the argument -- it is an intellectual argument. though taking the names off for me is deeply troubling. maybe this is having grown up at the university of virginia. for all of the things that wilson is, right? jefferson is someone who holds his own children in bondage, in the context of slavery, real harm done to real humans. yet we don't throw out the declaration of independence. we don't unname it in part because you need those names there to tell the whole story. i don't want to sanitize it. for me the argument is what are the untold stories? what are the names that ought to be on buildings that aren't? >> i think if you read the other side's conversation about this they say it is about political correctness but this is really about who should be honored in our public and intellectual discourse. does princeton not have enough
americans or other alumni or even donors that deserve this public and intellectual recognition? >> you got to an interesting point about the donors though. because that is a somewhat different question. right? about the capacity of folks to put their names on buildings that they themselves build. i think that's different than what's going on with wilson where it is a kind of honoring and honoriffic. >> what i think is dangerous or what i think we have to be really aware of is that the issue behind the symbolic names and the naming of buildings is that there are so many segregationists, there are so many slave owners, that we would really have to do a very thorough going transformation of almost every college campus if we were to remove their names. and perhaps that's something that we should do and perhaps that's something that universities will decide this is part of the way we're going to change, the way we're going to
transform into a university of the 21st century. but i think it is wonderful that we learned so much more about woodrow wilson in the past couple weeks. i think a lot of people thought of him as being an internationalist, the first person who envisioned the league of nations. but i think what i'd rather see on -- i definitely want to see the articles about the black people who were hurt by woodrow wilson's policies and who were removed from the federal bureaucracy because of his policies. but i also want to see the articles about the structural problems at the universities. i want to see the articles about the problems of tenure. i want to see the articles about the decline in black applicants. i want to see the articles about the curricular issues. i want to see the articles about the lower numbers of faculty members at universities and i think the danger of focusing on the symbols is that it gives us
the sort of neat and tidy thing that we can do and we can remove the name and then it is like, okay, we're done. >> we'll go to harvard law school when we come back. ♪ (vo) some call it giving back. we call it share the love. during our share the love event, get a new subaru, and we'll donate $250 to those in need. bringing our total donations to over sixty-five million dollars. and bringing love where it's needed most. love. it's what makes a subaru, a subaru. no tellin' how much i'm gellin'. you gellin'? you gellin'? i'm like magellan, i'm so gellin'. quit yellin' we're gellin'.
in 1991 the first tenured black harvard law school professor took a voluntary unpaid leave of absence to protest the possibility for tenured women professors. he called it a leave of conscience which he vowed to maintain until the law school granted ten ture to at least on black woman professor. it helped galvanize the discussion about diversity and scholarship on a campus where related are tensions ran high. that was also the year the harvard law review had its first black president, a young man named president obama. >> one of the persons who spoke at that orientation was professor bell.sauntering up to the front and not giving us a lecture but engaging us in a
conversation and speaking the truth and telling us th-- >> professor bell never returned to harvard as his protests ultimately led to his dismissal. he passed away in 2011 at the age of 80 but not before seeing the first black president of the united states being elected. a reminder what's learned from campus protests can sometimes be translated into meaningful leadership. what might then be ahead for current law school looking to the current seal. the family's coat of art was involved in the trafficking of slavery in the 18th century. joining us, a harvard law student who took part in the protests in ferguson, missouri. >> thank you, melissa.
>> i'll ask a question i asked is the student leader from mizzou. make for me a connection the work you have done in communities and community organizing and the work you've been doing on campus. >> absolutely. so what's interesting is that harvard law, like is a law school, and whenever there is a police shooting and black or brown bodies are dropping to the ground, the society goes up in confusion as to why prosecutors don't bring charges against cops. and one reason i think that is is because we don't have proper contextualization in legal education. so my peers are not being pushed to think critically about the spaces that they currently occupy. all the manifestations antiblackness that reside within harvard also reside within the real world so we're not equipping my peers, my colleagues, my professors with the tools, with the language to then graduate and then go on to become prosecutors, they're going to go on to become supreme
court justices and policymakers. the president of the united states. they're going to go on to occupy these roles and when they can't even be pushed to be critical of law school, how can we expect them to be critical of a criminal justice system that fails black and brown bodies every day whether pushing back against students who call out the anti-blackness currently in the classroom. i think it is a direct connection. we're going to be future lawyers. we're going to be in this society and we can't continue to silence marginalized students at the university because ultimately we're going to be representing those type of people as lawyers. >> in the context of the movement you all have been engaged in there was an act -- potentially an act of vandalism. i know harvard law's investigating right now but of black tape put over the faces of african-american professors from the law school. randall kennedy, a professor of the law school, wrote an op-ed for "the washington post" in which he suggested that the work
that you and your colleagues are doing is -- the language he used is, it is a related tendency to indulge in self-diminishment by display be an excessive vulnerability to perceive actual slights and insults. >> what's your response? >> you don't have enough time for my full response. the problem is he's reducing these events to black tape or he's reducing these events to a shield. but our fight has never been reducible to a confederate flag, nor a water fountain, nor a lunch counter. so i find it almost laughable that we're reduced these incidents to items, right? and not to a culture that tolerates or breeds anti-blackness. so say that -- i agree with your point that college is hard, but i think randall kennedy is saying, yeah, college hard is black students but it shouldn't be hard to white students. it should be hard to all of us.
so when there is a racist act on campus, black students should be heard but my white colleagues and white peers and white professors and randall kennedy should also be heard. >> i so appreciate your point that that's my whole point about college should be hard. right? so for me, the language that you just used about pushing intellectually in the classroom, that is such a critical one for thinking about how those questions of justice play out. khalil, i know you want in on this. >> i do. i think this is a moment again where we see the relationship of the street to the campus or the community of what we are seeing on campus. both of your guests describe activism outside the campus and its relation to inside the campus. activists have pointed out time and time again this is not just about laws, this is about changing beliefs and values and changing attitudes. i want to give kudos to the president of harvard where she
talks about we must insert history into our national discourse and our public policy. it is not one or the other because the values that we uphold and how we express them in our deep constructed crests and symbols and extractions of things and symbols we put around us, including the confederate flag which hung over the state house of south carolina, was an act of state speech in support ultimately of a history of violence which could then perpetuate a present and future of violence. so therefore these symbols matter. but they matter who how we thing of ourselves collectively and public policies. your guests have spoken brilliantly to those connections. >> thank you. i'll let in president obama who's going to weigh in on this question when we come back.
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folks on college campuses saying we're not going to allow somebody to speak on our -- because we disagree with their ideas or because we feel threatened by their ideas. i think that's a recipe for dogmatism and i think you're not going to be as effective. >> that was president obama speaking with abc's george stephanopoulos on november 12th about protests at the university of missouri. >> at first i think diversity, equity and inclusion in these conversations isn't happenstance. it has to be an institutional priority and has to be priority for us in our classrooms, has to be priority for us in our hiring. that's one of the first things to say. i also think that our classrooms are our laboratories of our national discussions of today and the future. we are training the future leaders of our country. i think it's a very weighty responsibility that we have as faculty. it's not just that we're
researchers, not just that we're teachers but we are training the leaders of our nation. >> for me, this is part of the argument that i heard from harvard law school, for me then the value -- the reason i want you to -- you shouldn't graduate from college not having encountered "the voice," but i also want you to read libertarian writers. this is part of the idea of being able to make these arguments. when you hear the president say you got to listen to everybody, for me it is less about the speakers on campus and more about the syllabus on campus. >> if and when it happens. >> and that also really deals with the issue of faculty diversity because we know studies have shown that the more diverse faculty that we have, the more diversity we have in terms of those syllabi, in terms of which writers are represented and importantly in terms of teaching also about the role of
women, the role of gay and lesbian men and women, the role of transgender people, that it is really important that we think about faculty diversity in very broad ways so that we're offering syllabi and we're preparing students for a very diverse multi-racial, multi-cultural society. >> how on the one hand do you hold intention like this need to create future leaders who are capable of this kind of broad discourse, without moving to a let's get sensitivity training for all -- like i heard sensitivity training for all staff and faculty and i thought -- like that gives me a little bit of angst to hear that argument. >> i think there is a way that students are experiencing all kinds of incidents of marginalization, of alienation in their day. some can separate the classroom just from what's happening in your interactions with the financial aid office or with janitor or whomever. right? i think there is a way that
those folks aren't always getting the kinds of preparation to deal with increasingly diverse student population. so i think that's one thing to say. but absolutely we need to use our classrooms as the space to introduce these concepts. what's heartening to me about princeton, in my african-american lecture course, every year i give this lecture on world war i and we talk about woodrow wilson and invariably students come away after that, i did not know that about woodrow wilson. then we see those same kids now engaging in this protest. >> oh, it was you! and now we know. thank you to you all. up next, how much history do you know about african-american cookbooks? do you know why there are so few? the answer after this. at planters we know how to throw a remarkable holiday party. just serve classy snacks and be a gracious host, no matter who shows up.
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cooks made and served dishes we learned to love and make from the black men and women who raised and nurture and fed us. my specialties include mac and cheese and sweet potato pie and for james the unparalleled perry gumbo. african-americans have helped forge this country's culler in tradition. but looking at the american cookbook canon you might not know it. of the 100,000 recipe collections printed in the country, only 200 are credited to african-american authors. food writer tony tipton martin is working to change all of that. she spent decades collecting and preserving african-american cookbooks and showcasing the culinary tradition. now she's sharing her collection with the new book "jemimah code." joining me now is toni tipton martin. >> nice to be here. thank you for having me. >> talk about the title of this book. what are you signaling with
this? >> the beautiful way that this title dovetails with everything you've been talking about already with your guests, and that is that we've had this symbol in the united states that wraps together a bunch of characteristics for african-american women to telegraph that they were intelligent, competent cooks in the kitchen as long as their face was in the cover of a package for pancake flour. when it comes time to attribute those same proficiencies at the cookbook level, those voices and images were missing. and so it started for me as a search from my grandmother on the pages of southern cookbook history has involved into a social justice project to be able to, as you were saying earlier, reclaim that symbol as one of value and a woman and role model from which we can learn. >> it also feels like part of the jemimah code is that cooking
has to be done for a white family. it's not about valuing the cooking that so many of our mothers and grandmothers and fathers and grandfathers did for us in our household and passed on through oral tradition as opposed to by writing it down in cookbooks. >> so one of the really important messages of this cookbook, having them all aggregated into one collection is it demonstrates the foods we were cooking when resources permit it. and within our community, we understand there were many, many families for whom the resources permitted. so to cook a really elaborate lovely brunch or to serve a banquet does not mean that you're only cooking for white people. it can be very much so what we've cooked in our own homes and communities and restaurants and churches and our hotels. and so what i'd like to challenge people to think about is the fact that we know very little about what today's modern
celebrity chefs cook at home, right? we honor them for the food they cook at work otheir food network shows. but when it comes to african-americans, there's this tendency to segregate our cooking into the food of the cabin or survival cooking. i always want to be really clear that we want to retain and acknowledge and honor our ancestors for the ingenuity of cooking with very limited resources. but that doesn't contain the totality of our culinary experience. so these books help us validate their proficiency in a way oral history can't really justify to the broader community. >> do cookbooks still matter in a world where people google a recipe five minutes before dinner? does that still matter to collect recipes together as a whole? >> i think so because again one
of the things wi s we're able t through these cookbooks is cookbooks contain more than just instructi instructions and ingredients. this is a space where women who had fewer opportunities for artistic expression could record activities. some of them have advertisements in them which shows the economic opportunities that were available for african-american. the cookbook isn't a genre that records history and community as well. >> what was on your thanksgiving table this week? >> oh, all of those tradition aal things you described. macaroni and cheese, turkey, collard greens. we make some adjustments but also realize that's the one time of year we're going to eat that heavily so we're largely vegetarian the rest of the time. we really knock it out on
thanksgiving. >> this year i started gardening for the first time so i went out on thanksgiving morning, the day before thanksgiving morning and got my own collards and kale out of the garden. it was a really satisfying experience to do a garden to table in my own yard. so i want to say thank you to toni tipton martin in austin, texas. check out her book in stores now. the jemimah code. two centuries of african-american cookbooks. thanks to you at home for watching. i'll see you next saturday at 10:00 a.m. eastern. right now a preview of "weekends with alex witt." thanks for not busting me as i just sat down. >> the breaking news. climate change protesters meeting with teargas in paris just as the president heads to that city for a meeting with world leaders. hear what it was like to get caught up in all that commotion. highways and airports
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the beautiful sound of customers making the most of their united flight. power, wi-fi, and streaming entertainment. that's... seize the journey friendly. ♪ good day to all of you. welcome to "weekends with alex wit." protests in the streets. police hurling tear gas. this just two weeks after a terror attack there paralyzed the city. details behind this ongoing event. the long way home. americans heading back home from the holiday amid heightened security and tension. in politics, donald trump, den carson and chris christie all making headlines. which could be having the best day? the story behind this picture and how two men managed to save what appeared to be a grateful bald