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tv   PBS News Hour Weekend  PBS  December 14, 2013 5:30pm-6:01pm PST

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saturday, december 14, the president and the nation observed the one-year anniversary of the massacre in newtown. we'll have the latest on what schools are doing to protect students. in our signature sessionment, how drones could soon change your life. >> this is designed to chase storms in tornado alley. but it could just as easily search for someone missing, relay communications in an emergency. >> and new efforts to remove anti buy otics from the meat you eat. critics say they don't go nearly far enough. next on "pbs newshour weekend."
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from the studios in lincoln center, new york, this is pbs newshour weekend. >> good evening. i'm john larson. hari sreenivasan is off. bells tolled in newtown, connecticut as the town remembered and honored the 20
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children, six educator and xloo employees gunned down one year ago. in virginia protesters demanding new gun control laws marched outside the headquarters of the national rifle association. president obama led the nation in mourning. he and the first lady lit candles and observed a moment of silence to mark the event. in a denver suburb today police searched the home of karl pierson who shot and critically wounded a 15-year-old girl in their high school yesterday and killed himself. authorities first visited the home last night. police believe the gunman was targeting a teacher with whom he had the dispute. the navy may first have its first female admiral. the president's nomination of michelle howard requires senate approval. howell has been quoted as saying the best ambassador is a warship, a graduate of the naval kaktd akd me and serves as
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deputy chief of naval operations. word of a naval incident involving the united states and china, the latest sign of tension between the two countries. a senior u.s. defense official said to do a chinese ship had taken what he called particularly aggressive action by cutting across the bow of an american missile-carrying cruiser. the december 5th incident reportedly occurred in international waters in the south chooin nah sea. the american vessel had been monitoring the maiden voyage of a new chinese aircraft carrier. all this as the u.s. and ipts allies, japan and south korea have resisted china's effort to impose an air defense zone in the east china sea. china is reporting a major advance in its space program. chinese state media broadcast pictures of flied controllers celebrating the successful lunar landing of a scientific probe. it took 12 days to make the
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240,000 msh mile journey. this is an animation depicting the spacecraft's 12-minute decurrent onto a relatively flat part of the moon. iran is also stepping up its space program. iran state tv today broadcast pictures of a rocket blasting off carrying a monkey into space. iran says the six-pound animal was recovered safely after the capsule carrying it separated from the rocket and parachuted safely to earth. iran first launched a monkey into space last january. in south africa today after three days of mourning nelson mandela's body was moved by a government building and escorted by sfiter jets to his ancestral home. a state funeral will be held there tomorrow. remember the south african man who got within a few feet of president obama by posing as a sign language interpreter at a memorial service for mandela? newly discovered court records show the man had been accused of attempted murder and murder during the past 20 years.
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charges were evidently dropped because he was deemed unfit to stand trial. now back to school safety. in the engineer since the newtown massacre the national focus has been on gun laws and mental health programs, but largely out of sight, thousands of schools have implemented changes they hope will keep their students safe. for more about this, we are joined now from phoenix by kevin quinn, he's the president of the national association of school resource officers, a non-profit whose mission it is to make schools safe. thank you very much for joining us. research officers are i'm sure more than a policeman with a gun standing at the front door. what exactly are they? >> absolutely. school resource officers are properly trained police officers from the local jurisdiction. they're assigned to a school on a full-time basis. again, like you said, they're more than just let's just put an officer with a gun standing at the front door waiting for something bad to happen. these officers are completely i
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understand greated into the school and into the school system as part of the faculty and part of the administration team. >> were there resource officers in newtown? >> they had an officer assigned to the junior high school and one assigned to the high school. >> but not at the elementary school? >> no, sir. >> putting officers in a lot of these schools obviously very, very e pen sive. to what extent has the tightens of budgets, especially at the state level impeded some of these changes? >> i'm sure right now with sandy hook only being one year ago some of the budgets haven't quite caught up to the needs and the necessities of school safety. i do know the federal government just released a grant for about 300, a little over 300 new school resource officers across the country. that grant auz awarded back in october. >> any evidence so far they've been able to interrupt a school shooter coming in?
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>> there hasn't really been a lot of school shootings that have occurred on campuses where there is a school resource officer, per se. if you think about it, when you have a police car sitting out in school and a police officer on the campus, any kind of outside incruder, they may not pick that school to go on, to go on campus and carry out the attack. >> in the year since newtown, what type of changes have schools been make? >> in the last year we've seen a lot of schools starting to take a step back and look at their crisis plans, look at their emergency plans, look at school -- the physical school security as well, putting into effect the planning, the drills, the practices and things like that. >> in addition to the drills and the planning, we're hearing about some new technologies being involved. can you tell us a little more about that? >> there's a lot of technology out there now, everything from automatic locking doors to films
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that we've heard about, you put a film over windows that enables the glass not to break as easily, to bulletproof backpacks and armored bunkers that you install inside school buildings. >> i've read about the bunkers and bulletproof ban packs, are these being put into place? >> i haven't heard of any schools that have gone through it yet. i've seen a lot of the marketing out there. i don't know as far as the cost is concerned, if that's going to be an obstacle in doing this. >> kevin quinn joining us tonight from phoenix, thanks very much. >> thank you, sir. and now to our signature segment. you may have seen that story on 60 minutes recently about how amazon some day might use drones to deliver packages to your home. but that only scratches the surface about how governments and businesses could utilize
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these pilotless flying objects in this country. some believe it's a potential bonanza. but the prospect of tens of thousands of drones in the sky in the not-very-distant future has raised both safety and privacy concerns. rick carr reports from colorado. >> reporter: the future of aviation could be an aircraft light enough to be carried by a grad student, rugged enough to take off from a grassy field and flexible enough to do just about anything in the air. not firing missiles, this one is designed to change storms in tornado alley, but it could just as easily search for someone who is missing, relay communications in an emergency, monitor a pipeline for leaks, maybe even deliver packages. >> you want to do this mission, put in this set of sensors. you want to do this next mission, you put in other sensors and so forth. >> reporter: put the right equipment on board and drones could be useful to lots of
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different industries and government sectors. so useful that sales of the pilotless aircraft might just take off. within a couple hours' drive of this field near boulder, colorado startups and established eve asian companies are meeting up to meet the demand. it's part of a state-side effort to convince the federal aviation administration to to put one of the testing sites it's announced in colorado. if the state has an edge over the 23 others in the running, it may be this man, professor of aerospace engineering at university of colorado bourder. >> the idea that you're going to sit at a console with a joy stick in your hand, with a video coming from cameras on the aircraft and flying that around, no. that's technology from the '80s and '90s. this is a new sentry and autono autonomy, that will be the
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future. >> reporter: essentially we're talking about a flying robot, right? >> it's already a flying robot. >> right now it's flying with the computer reigns, not by me. >> reporter: people who build these flying robots would prefer the public and report evers not call them drones. one of the tones they prefer is uas, unmanned aircraft systems. and the unmanned part is another big selling point. >> the uas doesn't care if the pilot is tired. it will sit there until you tell it to come home or it runs low on fuel. >> reporter: most use less fuel than manned aircraft. bottom line, they're cheaper to fly. so much cheaper that businesses that can only dream about using manned aircraft today could end up flying their very own drones. for example, architect and real estate developers might want them to fly over buildings in the surrounding neighborhoods in order to scan them to build 3d models. argro thinks u.s.'s killer app
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will be agriculture. the founder in a denver suburb is betting on that. >> i think it's going to be a windfall of operation. >> reporter: alan bishop's firm, reference technologies builds drones that take off and land like helicopters. he think thinks they'll be as common on farm as pickup trucks. >> corn, wheat. historically they would call up the local sprayer and he'll spray the entire field. with this technology, you send this unit out and it can determine the segment of field that's infested and that's the only part that needs to be sprayed. >> reporter: that would save money for farmers and could mean less residue from chemicals that treat agricultural diseases on the dinner table. some of the drones look like the copters you might see hobbyists piloting by remote. but these pilot themselves. >> our big unit can take off from this parking lot and land on the pitcher's mound in coors
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field with hands off. >> wow. you just program the gps. >> you use the gps maps and go click, click, click. you look for any obstructions along the way, and about 30 minutes later it shows up at coors field landing on the pitcher's mound. >> hopefully not during a game. >> for sure. >> reporter: that model can stay in the air for five hours with 20 pounds of equipment on board. right now there are over 500 drones flying in the u.s. five years from now the federal aviation administration predicts about 7500. by 2025 an industry group expects tens of thousands. bishop is even more optimistic. how many drones do you think will be commercially in the air in the united states in, say, ten years? >> in ten years, 100,000 plus, easily. >> reporter: but right now faa rules make it next to impossible for farmers, corporations,
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pretty much any part of the private sector to get the permits that are necessary to fly them. even bishop does haven't a permit, so he doesn't fly his drones to a baseball stadium or anyplace else unless they're tethered to the ground with fishing line. if the faa were to make it easier for the private sector to buy and fly uas's, a trade group estimates colorado's industry would do $20 million in the first year alone, then grow exponentially. efforts to boost the industry have been flying into a stiff headwind. with thousands of these birds in the air there are concerns, first, that these might run into conflict with existing manned aircraft. secondly, a lot of these birds in the air are also eyes in the sky. >> when you first learned that colorado is pushing to become a testing site for drones, what was your first reaction? >> well, in some ways it was, whoa, wait a minute.
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we don't have in my mind what the privacy rules should be in place before we talk about any sort of escalation in putting the drones up in the air. we haven't laid the appropriate groundwork for them. >> reporter: denise mays is with the aclu in colorado. she says there's legitimate reasons to use the drones, like search and rescue operations. she worries those same eyes in the skies will end up being used for what she thinks are less than legitimate purposes. >> if you have a drone that's being launched for the purpose of finding a hot spot in a fire and en route it gathers private information about private citizens on their private property and retains that data and later wants to use it in a criminal proceeding, that's the problem. >> reporter: it sounds like this is one of those slippery slope arguments in a way. once you put drones in the hands of law enforcement, they're going to keep expanding the way
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they use them. >> that's certainly what we fear. i think the rush to get the permits, get the technology going, launch them, we'll worry about repercussions later. we'll fix them as they come up, is not good policy making. >> reporter: the airline pilots association also wants drones to remain grounded while regulator develop rules for them. the union wants the federal aviation administration to make sure uas's don't compromise the safety of nearly a quarter million manned aircraft in the country. >> i think the way they'll do this effectively is to do it very methodically, not to suddenly completely clobber the integrated air space with an abundance of ua. >> the union wants every aircraft to have a human being at a set of controls every time one takes to the skies, even if it's capable of flying itself.
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>> somebody physically on the airplane or physically on the ground has to have an understanding of the performance characteristics of this vessel. they have to understand what the consequences are if they misuse it. you just can't walk in off the street just like some kid flying a game machine somewhere -- >> cassidy says the good news is the faa's plan for bringing drones tint nation's air space proposes some kind of pilot certification. it also requires high-tech safety systems for drones that can sense and avoid collisions. keep the radio link with the control station secure from malicious hackers or terrorists and more. but the bad news, he says, is congress ordered the faa to let more drones start flying by september of 2015. he thinks that may be too soon. >> what's a reasonable timeline for this? >> i think reasonable timeline is the one that's the safe timeline. i don't think the tactical and
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safety work that's required is going to be accomplished by then. >> we have to be compliant with the faa's rules and regulations. >> colorado drone entrepreneur alan bishop says he's sympathetic because he's a private pilot. he says there are already devices that the invade the public's privacy. >> we have initial negative things about things we don't understand or we feel we can't control. and drones or uass clearly fall into that category. they're high-tech devices. they have extraordinary capabilities. they fly. >> more than anything, alan bishop just wants to be allowed to let his drones off their leashes so they can prove to everyone they're as useful as he thinks they'll turn out to be. aerospace engineering professor brian argro can already do that. the rules don't apply to
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researchers at state universities, so his team has been flying them for years. he understands the frustration with the slow process in getting them off the ground. but drones present complex problems. he's not sure he'd advise regulators at the faa to move faster. >> what's the alternative? >> a free-for-all, you start bringing down manned aircraft. >> reporter: he sees drones as a big part of the future of aviation, maybe as much as jeff bees soes is predicting. he thinks it will take longer before they're cleared for takeoff. from firefighting to orangutan tracking. explore the world that drones could soon explore, visit newshour.pbs.org. a potentially important story that got a little attention this week was a proposal by the food and drug 5d registration to limit the use of anti buy otics in farm animals.
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health officials worry that overuse of these drugs makes us more vulnerable to infectious diseases. for more about the fda's proposal and the likelihood it will be implemented, we're joined now from washington by sabrina tavernisi of "the new york times" who has written extensively about the topic. thanks so much for joining us. what are these new rules? >> the rules essentially lay out changes that the pharmaceutical industry needs to make to the labels of drugs they make for farm animals, anti buy otic drugs. essentially once the changes are made, that will mean that the farmers and ranchers and the agricultural businesses will no longer be allowed to use and buy otics in feed and water for growth promotion purposes. in other words, to make the animals grow faster and be plumper. >> we know these proposals, these rules are already coming under some criticism. why is that? >> essentially there's a great
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deal of skepticism in public health community, understandably, that the agricultural businesses are going to use a loophole to essentially allow them to continue using the same low doses of antibiotics over the course of the lifetime of the animal and just say, for example, they needed to use it for disease prevention purposes or for growth promotion purposes, in other words, to keep the animals from getting sick. >> your sense is, however, they're going to be more than why don't you trust us to do the right thing type of regulation. you feel like there are some more teeth to it. >> i think so. the skepticism on the part of the public health people is understandable. it's been years, decades, even, with very little action on this problem. we've gotten to the point in human health where infectious disease doctors and pediatricians are just extremely worried about this. but, you know, essentially the
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fda's response is, well, there are going to have to be prescriptions from veterinarians. so it won't just be like it is now where farmers and ranchers can simply go to a feed store and buy as much of this stuff as they like. for human health, we have to get prescriptions for anti buy otics. but that is not the case for farms and farm animals. >> sabrina, you had written in some of your articles that the cdc has some alarming new numbers on this. >> yes, they see 2 million americans get sick from these anti-resistant pugs. >> how is the rollout going to proceed? >> the fda is taking the temperature of the pharmaceutical companies, giving them three months to tell the agency whether they will be participating and then it will be -- they will have actually three years to make the changes. >> sabrina tavernisi joining us
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from washington, d.c., thank you so much. >> thanks a lot. this is pbs newshour weekend saturday. finally tonight, more about the assault on wildlife in africa. border officials in great britain say they have seized a record number of items related to endangered animals this year, all part of illegal trade valued at many billions of dollars. david wood of itv news reports. >> reporter: they're meant to be roaming the asian rain forest or plains of africa, but this collection of endangered animals is held at a storage unit in heathrow, part of what border officials have seized over the last year. >> from west and central africa, primarily trafficked via the hubs at heathrow and back to hong kong. we pick up between five to 15 kilos of ivory. the heartbreaking thing quite
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clearly it's new ivory from recently slaughtered elephants. >> reporter: this year the uk border forces confiscated more illegal items than ever. some 2.5 million individual pieces were seized in the past 12 months. that's a tenfold increase on the previous year where just 248,000 were impounded. the illegal trade in wildlife is thought to be worth 12 billion pounds every year. >> it's a frightening figure, and the impact on the species which are being taken out of these countries is just -- it's huge. in our lifetime we could genuinely see three of africa's iconic species, the elephant, the rhino and the lion disappear from our planet. >> charities say that can't be allowed to happen. and unless we do more to protect endangered species, this may be the only place we can see them in the few your.
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join us tomorrow on air and online. the lessons banks can learn about serving the poor. >> when you walk into a check casher, you see the fees for every service posted and you walk into a bank and there's no signage at all. >> that's it for this edition of "pbs newshour weekend." i'm john larson. thanks for watching. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com
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[train whistle blows] - he's weak. she's not taken him to the clinic, and he's not able to walk. we're very bound by this sense of injustice that exists in the world. - that's pretty good, right? - that's very good. i don't want to just create another product for the sake of creating another product. if we do it, i want to make sure that it's really because it's filling a need that doesn't currently get filled. - oh, my god. we have five people in our group, different backgrounds that should be able to mobilize. stop. stop. stop. have i thought about the idea that maybe that won't happen? yeah, i have. - what? what? - there were obviously tons of mistakes, little things i wish i had done differently. but regrets?

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