tv PBS News Hour PBS March 8, 2018 6:00pm-7:01pm PST
captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> sreenivgood evening, i'm hari sreenivasan. judy woodruff is away. on the newshour tonight... >> today i'm defending america's national security by placing tariffs ongn imports of steel and aluminum. >> sreenivasan: ...predent trump raises the stakes in a potential trade war amid warnings from his own party and threats of global retaliation. tha, the politics of trade- key trade advisor to the trump white house underscores the threat of china anesexplains the ident's push for tariffs. >> trade is good. tariffs and the thre tariffs are a negotiating tool to require countries like china to stop their unfair tra practices. that's the mission. >> sreenivasan: and, revelatioin about the wafghanistan and pakistan. a new book reports on missed opportunits, mixed priorities, and failed operations in what has become america's longest war. all that and more on tonight's
pbs newshour. or funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic rformance and financial literacy in the 21st century. >> carnegie corporation of new york. supporting innovations in e ucation, democratic engagement, and vancement of international peace and security. at carnegie.org. >> and with the ongopport of these institutions:
and individuals. >> this program was made le by the corporation fo public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> sreenivasan: president trump has made good on his vow to impose steep tariffs on two imported metals. the orders he signed today set a 25% levy on foreign steel and 10% on aluminum. he makes an exemption for canada and mexico, while negog changes to the north american free trade agreement. the tariffs are set to take effect in 15 days. mr. trump signed the order, with
industry workers looking on, after arguing the riffs are vital. >> the american steel and aluminumtry has been ravaged by aggressive foreign trade practices, it's really an assault on our country. it's been an assault. the actions we are taking today the not a matter of choice are a matter of necessity for our security. >> sreenivasan: house speaker paul ryan and other leading republicans ophe tariffs. speaking in atlanta today, ryan arguedor a focus on china. >> i'm just not a fan ad- based across the board tariffs, because i think you'll have a lot of unintended consequences. you'll have a lot of collateral damage. t just consumers, but businesses. >> sreenivasan: hours before the president's announcement, 11 nations including japan, canada and australia signed an asian- pacific trade pact that slashes tariffs. president trump withdrew the u.s. from the prosed agreement last year.
in the day's other news, lawmakers in florida sena newly adopted gun control bill to republican governor rick scott. he would not say if he'll sign it. the bill passed the state house on wednesday. it sets purchase rifles, and also creates a program for arming teachers who get training. the mississippi legislature today approved an abortion bill that would likely be the most restrictive in the nation. utlaws the procedure after 15 weeks of pregnancy. a number of states now have limits of 20 weeks. mississippi's republican governor says he'll sign the bill, but abortion rights groups have promised to sue. the northeastern u.s. has started digging out after the second big storm in a week. parts of new jersey, new york and massachusetts got et of snow in the last 24 hours, and dover, vermont got 2.5 feet. crews worked overnight to remove downed trees, plow highways and clear railway tr00ks. some 800ustomers were in the dark, including some who lost power in tht storm. in britain, a former russian spy
anhis daughter are still critically ill after being poisoned by a nerve agent. poli also say 21 others need treatment after sunday's attack, but most he recovered. the investigation is continuing, but officials are not directly blaming russia, so far. dan rivers of independent television news has oureport. >> it is a sign of the severity of the potential hazard that fire crews were being equipped with protective and masks as they approached the bench where sergei skripal and yulia skripal were found. as senio officers watching on as the crew resecured a forensic tent over the scene. this afternoon the officers who was hospitaled after first attending the incident was named as detective sergeant nick bailie. he has regained consciousness but is in seriousb but sle condition. >> he's well. he sat up. he's not the nick i know, but he's proceeding under a h level of treatment. he's in the safe hands of the
medical professionals. >> reporter: the government has nfirmed which nerve agent was used but entrenched in its condemnation of the culprits. >> the use of nerve agent is a brazen and reckless act. this was attempted murder in the most cruel and public way. people are right to want to know who to hold to account. >> reporter: yulia skripal and erring skerring are in critical condition. this cct of them leaving shows yulia holding a red handbag. this photo shows her handbag discarded on the ground as apo ce officer not wearing any productive suit or maskathers evidence. at sergei skripal's house, several tents have now been put up and the cordon around it has been extended. it's not clear why the policeac vity at sergei skripal's house has increased so markedly today but it's possible officers are looking to see if there are
any traces of the nerve agent inside the property. rgei skripal's wifend son both side in recent years and are buried in salisbury, a family consu by repeated tragedy with some now wondeirng if t deaths were more than just terrible coincidences. >> sreenivasan: sergei skripal had once been a double agent for britain before being caught and later freed in a spy swap. fresh disclosures today about the investigation of possible russian links to the trump campaign. "the washington poported there's new evidence that a secret meeting, justauefore the ration, was aimed at creating a back channel with the kremlin. d, "the new york times" reported the president has asked two key witnesses about their conversations with investigators. meanwhile, ftrump campaign chair paul m afort pleaded not guilty today to tax evasion and bank fraud, in feral court in virginia. turkey announced plans today for isjoint operation with iraqi forces, against kurebels in northern iraq. it could start after iraq's elections on may 12th.
the turks are already attacking u.s.-backed kurdish fighters in the turks say they're allied with rebels inside turkey. secretary of state rex tillerson declared today the u.s. commitment to africa is clear. that's after president trump triggered outrage in january with a slur abt african nations. today, in ethiopia, tillerson met with a top african union official, who said it's time to move past the uproar. >> ( translated ): i believe that this incident is behind us. lieve that the visit today by the u.s. secretary of state tillerson is the proof of the relations between afri the united states. >> sreenivasan: this is tillerson's firsomatic trip to africa. he'll also stop in chad, andjibouti, ethiopia, keny nigeria. this was international women's day, with s and demonstrations across the world. in the philippines, hundread of women cln pink protested in manila accusing president rodrigo duterte of violating women's rights. spanish women ind brought traffic to a standstill during a full-day strike against the wage
gap and gender violence. and in new delhi, hundreds marched toward the indian parliament to highlight sexual attacks. some carried signs reading "don't rape" aer slogans. the u.s. forest service has named vicki christiansen to be interim chief. , she's a former firefightd she'll succeed tony tooke, who retid yesterday after complaints of sexual harassment within the agency, and a pending on wall street today, the dow jones industrial average gainedt nearly 94 poinclose at 24,895. the nasdaq rose 31 points, and the s&p 500 added 12. and, it turns out fake news travels sis faster than the real thing, at least on twitter. researchers at the massachusetts institute of technology reached that conclusion after reviewing millions ots spanning 10 years. they say even accounting for the influence of bots, fake news moves "farther, faster, deeper and more broadly" than the truth.
twitter funded the study. still to come on the newshour: the trump economic adviser behind the steel and aluminum tariffs. om the newshour bookshelf, america's secret wars in afghanistan and pakistan. a pulitzer prize winning cartoonist sketches the faces of homelessness, and much more. >> sreenivasan: the president's to impose stiff tariffs on aluminum and steel could lead to bigger trade battles in the months to come. this afterno, president trump said his actions would lead to new plants and more jobsec he cited botomic security and national security as the justification for doing so. mr. trump says those metals are crucial for building military weapons and aircraft, and there must be enough u.s. facilities can produce aluminum an steel domestically. but after pressure, the president has exempted canada and mexico f.
and suggested flexibility for other countries as well. peter goodman covers global economics for the new york times and joins me from london via skype. so let's put this in perspective. mr. trump even on the campaign trail said this is about jobs and economic security, but now the reason includes national security as well. >> well, the national security claim is a direct nod to the world trade organization and the assumption that these tariffs are going to be challenged and there's going to be retaliation from at whole h of countries that are aggrieved, principa the european union. we think we'll get a challenge at the world trade organization from the european union, and this national security claim is a bet that the world health organization, who is like the referee in the global trading system, will not be willing to question the sovereignty of a member country, and ty wil defer to the right of a sovereign their own national security. but, you know, most economists, trade experts, they think -- i
mean, i heard terms yesterday talking to economis talking patently abseward, that there's no legitimate claim that can be made on the basis of national security because, let's remember, something around 70% of the steel used in the united states is produced in the united tates. so whatever we wan discuss, you know, and there are issues to discuss in terms of the steel industry and theext of the global economy, there's a big ut of steel, a lot produced in china, these are real issues, there are people outtf work a steel plants in the united states, but, you know, a lot of that's automatn, it doesn't even have to do with trade, and the notion that somehow americans are waking up imperilled by ct that, you know, canadians are making steel andm aluminuthat's a tough one to sell. >> sreenivasan: let's say this nod to the world health organization, this adding of national security keeps us out of that parcular court. couldn't other countries start to claim national security for their own trade tariffs and barriers?
>> well, precisely. in fact, a lot of people think that this t's up a kind of existential crisis for the world because,ganizati whatever they do, it's going to set an unpleasant precedent that could disrupt global trade going forward. if they do say, okay, washington, trump adminiration, you do have the right to declare this a national security threat, then that does, indeed, open the to just about any country that wants to protect a favored industry witho stic politics getting involved in global trade issues, and they can say,-- welyou know, the french could say, boy, cheese is so vital to us that the idea that kraft could send us, you know, something like parmesan, we're going to call that national security. i'm obviously being facetious, but there are lots of examples. one economist told me thisould open the floodgates to some very broad claims. on the other hand, if the world nalth organization overts this, if they say this is not a
legitimate security claim, then that could prompt the trump administration to either just ignore the order. himean,would be like the referee being inin order in an m athletch and the match goes on, it undermines the aledibility of the world organization, or in the most extreme case, they could say countries now have carte blanche to retaliate and we could have a full-blown trade war with potentiaully the administration pulling out of the world health organization. >> sreenivasan: let's expin, also, the exemption for canada and for mexico right now, while we are in active conversations, looking at nafta. >> well, we're not really clear on what just happened at the white house. hamean, we saw the president signed these two tariffs,aunching these 25% on steel, 10% on aluminum, and he did s that for the time being, canada and mexico are going to be leftut because we are currently renegotiating, the united stais is renegating
the north american free trade agreement, this giant trade bloc that encompasses canada, the ited states and mexico, and mr. trump has essentially combined that negotiation withth tariff proceeding, and a lot of trade experts say that that could undermine the claim of national security, both in the court of public opinion around the world and at the world trade organization because, youknow, if this ia question of, boy, we better make sure we've got enough steel to ke warships or weapons or whatever in the event of a real national security thn at, then how u treat it as a sort of trading chip in the context of a negotn of a whole range of issues with canada and mexico? but that seems to be where we're headed, withential other exemptions maybe for australia. mr. trump suggested he's going to look at how other nations are behaviether they're paying the bills, an apparent nod at n.a.t.o. re sounds like ths going to be a complex process, a real
negotiation of whoever's going to have to pay these tariffs and who ll be exempted. >> sreenivasan: all right, peter goodman of the "new york times" joining us via skype in london. ank you. >> thank you. >> sreenivasan: the president's decision comes after months of debate within the whuse, the government and among many businesses about how to handle trade and tariffs. one of the key figur in the white house who has made a case for these actions is the president's advisor, peter navarro. economics correspondent paul solman has spent some looking at the ideas and philosophy that he's back with an updated report for our weekly installment, "making sense." >> china. china. china. china. ina. china. china. china all the time. china. >> reporter: china and unfair trade: key trump themes for years. so this week's tariffs, as pushed by a favorite film of his: "death by cna," should come as no surprise. >> china has stolen thousands of our factories and millions of our jobs. multinational corporation
profits are soaring, and we now owe over $3 trillion t world's largest communist nation. >> reporter: the filmmaker, peter navarro, was also quite clear when we met during the campaign. >> we're going right down the toilet, and it's a made-in-china toilet. >> reporter: navarro, an economist then at the university of california, irvine, was the campaign's main trade advisor, is now the white house's right hand man on trade. 'd you get interested in and worried about china? >> i teach m.b.'s. d i noticed, starting a few years after china joined the woade organization, that a lot of my students were no longer employed. they were still coming to get their m.b.a., but they'd lost their jobs. and i st why.to ask questions and, at that point, all roads were leading to beijing. >> reporr: navarro has done plenty of technical work in economics, is a pionr in online learning. but he began focusing on china few years ago. >> the defining moment in american economic history is when bill clinton lobbied to get china into the world trade organization.
it was the worst political and economic mistake in american history in the last or0 years. >> rr: in the last 100 years? >> in the last 100 years, yes. ehina went into the world tr organization and agreed to play by certain rules. instead, they are illegally subsidizing their exports, manipulating their currency, stealing all of our intellectual property, ing sweatshops, using pollution havens. what happens is, our businesses and workers are playing tho game with twnds tied behind their back. >> reporter: navarro said you coul see the effects in irvine, where chinese students pay top dollar and flood the university while their parents scoop up local real estate. >> generally all cash deals. >> reporter: so your argument is, unfair trade practices, they amass dollars, they bring the doback here, they buy up property, and they drive up real estate prices? >> that's right. and they drive up rents for younger people. they wile up home prices for first-time home buyers. so it's not just that we're losing jobs and factories.
we're giving away our homes, our businesses, our companies, our tegies. >> reporter: but, of course, we heard the same alarm about japan in the 1980s, a false alarm. but china is differe, says navarro: so much bigger. >> we are going to enforce all tre violations against any country that cheats. >> reporter: the new tariffs, however, don't much affect china directly. canada is the largest exporter of steel and aluminum to the u.s., and though for now canada and mexico are exempted, tariffs would hit seven other bigger metal-exporters than china. but navarro says because chi floods the global market with cheap steel and aluminum, it's driving down prices and killin >> when we're behind on every other countries have added production capacity that far exceeds demand anded the market with cheap metal that is subsidized by foreign governments, creatinjobs for
their country and taking away jobs from our country. for example it takes china one month to produce as much steel as they produce in the united states in an entirer. y >> reporter: the new tariffs are being widely attas protectionism. over 100 free trade republicans signed a letter opposing them. but when we talked to peter navarro 18 months ago, he insisted tariffs weren't anything of the kind. >> wrong word, wrong word. >> reporter: what's wrong? >> donald trump isisot a protecti all he wants to do is defend america against unfair trade practices. >> reporter: well, defen protect. >> very different. trade is goo tariffs and the threat of tariffs are a negotiating tool to require countries like china to stop their unfair trade practices. that's the mission >> reporter: but what about retaliation? european commission president je-claude juncker s announced his own tariff
targets: >> ( translated ): harley davidson, on blue jeans, levis, on bourbon. we can also do stupid. we also have to be this stupid. >> rep which prompted this london front page on tuesday. >> choosing a trade war is a wrong move. the outcome wi only be harmful. china would have to make a proper and necessary response. >> reporter: such tough talk has left peter navarro unfazed. here he is last week. >> i don't believe any country in the world is going to retaliate for the simple reason we are the most lucrati and biggest market in the world. >> reporter: and the fact that tariffs will increase costs to irms and consumers, in this case, those using aluminum and steel? here's navarro's response on fox news sun >> if you look at a 10% tariff ee aluminum, a six-pack of or coke, that's a cent and a half. if you look atther end of the spectrum, boeing 777, it's
ere of the best airliners made, it's $330 million aircraft. se are talking but it incr in cost at the worst of $25,000. so, wh you're talking about these massive costs or whatever is in fact, it's not. there are no downstream price effects on our industries that are significant. >> reporter: added up, however, the overall costs would be in the billions. to which navarro's answer back in 2016 still holds. >> any increase would be less than the paycheck that all these peould be getting, both in terms of actually having a job, plus wages rising again. the trump trade doctrine is this. america will trade with any country, so long as that deal meets these three criterion: you increase the g.d.p. growth rate, you decrease the trayo deficit, anstrengthen the manufacturing base. >> reporter: but isn't technology responsible for the elimination of american factory
jobs? >> certainly technols played a part, but the dramatic ange from five-and-a-half decades of 3.5 percent rate of growth prior to china entering our markets with illegally subsidized goods and the 1.8% afterwards sugstrongly that china has played an enormous role in the decline and downfall of the american economy. and i can show on a blackboard exactly why. ter: now, your typical ist would hardly agree. but, hy, says navarro, your typical economist still believes in the old so-caaped keynesian proach to reviving the economy. >> alright, paul, the growth of any nation is simply four things. >> reporter: more consumption, c., by consumers and more g, government spending. he and trump, however, will supposedly flip the script, stimulating more i, investment, by business, via tax cuts for
the wealthy and corporations, while boosting net exports through new trals. that's exports minus imports. >> that's right. >> reporter: and, of course, if that's a negative number, that is, you have more imports than exports. >> this is the big kahuna. this iwhat donald trump understands. this is the trade deficit. we run a trade deficit of close to $800 billion a year. and so this directly subtracts from this. this is why we're stuck in low- growth mode. >> reporter: actually, growth has picked up considerably since varro and i talked; few economists think unbalanced trade was hampering we; and even fer think the new tariffs will help. a typical critic is josh bolten, who runs the business roundtable. >> this will cause huge damage across economy.tors of the you maybe e able to give a little bit of help to the steel and aluminum industries. you're going to cause damage eaross any number of downs industries and any number of
industries tunt export to ies that are likely to eptaliate. >> rter: well, i guess we'll see. the trump/navarro pocy of tax cuts to boost investment and tariffs to defend american producers will get a test run at last. for better... or worse. for the pbs newshour, this economics correspondent paul solman. co>> sreenivasan: for the , we have repeatedly requested interviews on trade with members of the trump administration. our requests have not yet been granted. >> sreen: the united states has been fighting in afghanistan for more than 16 years. it's a war fought mostly against the taliban, a group that exists due in large part to the telligence services of afghanistan's neighbor, pakistan. nick schifrin speaks now with the author of a new book who charts pakistan's shadow war, and its tense relawith the
united states. >> schifrin: afghanistan is the graveyard of empires. so goes the saying that describes whu.s. has faced a seemingly impossible task since 2001, but the fact ie the fate of s.' longest war was never preordained. the u.s. has made istakes and has struggled with afghanistan's neighbpe pakistan anaps the definitive version of that story is in a new book, irectorate s: the c.i.a. and america's secret wars in afghani steve coll, the dean and henry luce professor of journalism at the columbia journalism school. steve coll, welcome the program. >> thanks for having me. >> schifn: this is a book about 9/11 the aftermath of war in afghanistan and it is titled "directorate s." what is directorate s and why is it at the heart of this story? >> so it's the covert action arm of the pakistani intelligence service known as i.s.i. and it's the arm that has supported the taliban both before anafter 9/11, that has worked at times
in collaboration with the c.i.a. during the 1980s war and then against american interests after 2001 to try to seek influence for pakistan in afghanistan through these islamist militias. and it is at the heart of the war because the sanctuary the taliban have enjoyed in pakistan and the support that they've been able to get covertly from i.s.i. has been one of the major reasons why the u.s. has not been able to stabilize afghanistan despe sending tens ands of combat troops to the country along with nato allin:. >> schifow as you say pakistan has been doing this for a long time. but there was a moment in 2004, you write that it seems like pakistan could have once and for all kind of turned its back on the taliban and it didn't. why not? >> well, it's interesting. there was this period a relative peaer the fall of the taliban government in december 2001. and by t time you get to 2004 in afghanistan you have a successf presidential election, parliamentary elections are on the way. a constitution has been restored. many afghans have come home from
exile, but pakistan is stiwh trying to se kind of neighborhood they are going to be in after the americans are gone. the united states goes off and fights in iraq, quickly gets bogged down there and then i think another factor that motivated pakistan and its intelligence service was that the united states cut a strategic nuclear deal with india around this period essentially forgiving india for breaking out of the nuclear non- proliferation treaty and building atomic bombs. and it told pakistan at the same ti're not getting that deal and because you're not trustworthy. pakistani high command basically looked at this and said look we can't rely on the united stes and they're not going to stay in afghanistan for very long. we have to pro our own interests, they feared an afghanistan that was consolidating its independence and might become an ally of india which for pakistan that's what it's all about. >> schifrin: you write about thraordinary moment in 2014 which is a reflection of some of the tensions perhaps in pakistan and somhe u.s. fears in pakistan. how close did some disgruntled
pakistani navy people and al qat to seizing a ship with nuclear weapons? ci>> well it's an underpubd episode and i hope we'll learn more about it over time, but i came across some really stunning material about these young i naval officers who had lashed up with al-qaida in the tribal areasf pakistan and had decided to seize control of a pakistani missile ship, ke it into the arabian sea and attack u.s. vessels there and ty had a very-- they had a sense of how the ship was organized, how th could store weapons aboard they stored weapons in advance of their plan and then they moved to seize the ship. they were defeated by commandos, later india's government circulated a report that this part ship that they'd attacked contained nuclear ons as part of pakistan' seaborne deterrent nuclear deterrent against india. now t know whether that report is fully accurate it comes from india, it has to be
taken with a grain of salt, but you know it's the first time we've had circulated reporting that terrorists attacked a facility where there were at least in this report some nuclear weapons. and you know this has been the nightm and it's one of theg, contradictions in the u.s. war. when w into afghanistan the obama administration sat arouthe situation room as it escalated the war and it debated what are the really vital interests that we have that justify putting young american men and women in harm's way. they identified two: one was al qaeda and its international terrorism menace but the other was the security of pakistan's nuclear weapons. the trouble is the more we escalated the war the more we destabilized pistan which leads to episodes like the one we just discussed. >> schifrin: the obama administration pushed for talks with the taliban andou have details that certainly i've never come across. do you feel like the tks with the taliban were bound to fail because the relationship beten the obama administration and
hamid karzai, president afranistan had deteriorated did they fail for other reasons? >> well, the failure of the talks was partly related to the problem of the relationship with hamid karzai during the obama administration. as you say, karzai really blew up the talks at a moment when they looked like they might be fruitful but there were other complications. one was it wasn't really clear what the taliban wanted from these negotineions that was r tested before the talks blew up. secondly, the relationip with i.s.i. in pakistan was again complicated. the taliban secret representative, this man named ty bhaga, remarkharacter, you know he kept saying to the americans in these safe houses where they were negotiating i don't want to be a client of we're afghans, we want to negotiate independently with you. you're in our country, we'd like to talk about how we can get you out of our country slowly in a transition but i don't want pakistan to speak for us. but the pakistanis te americans you can't do this negotiation without us.
and they started to essentially act as agents for the taliban. at one point, they delivered ages to the americans in mullah omar's name and the americans could never quite figure o what the relationship between i.s.i. and the taliban leadership was in thnee tiations, it made it very difficult to succeed. >> schifrin: and one mabe thing t how u.s. soldiers fought this war. you talk about how u.s. soldiers went blind into batt to a certain extent, not understanding the kind of historic nature of the taliban's relationship with the people and also a level of hubris that came from how easy the first few weeks or months of the war was. did the u.s. ever really understand what to do on the ground in afghistan? >> well they fought a counterinsurgency war at the peak of u.s. military presence there and there was kind of a fashionable bubble of doctrine around counterinsurgency theory that was appli to the afghan war after the perceived success in iraq in 2007, 2008. and you know hamid karzai warned
the american generals who were arriving to carry out this counterinsurgency gn that he didn't think it would work. he didn't think it was the right strategy. worried that all of this patrolling in villages and kicking down doors was going to alienate the afghan people. but he really wasn't in a position to stop the american led juggernaut at that point. and ultimately the ground but settled taliban held their ground. the c.i.a. used to produce every six months maybe still does, these classified maps with different which district the taliban controlled which, which district the government controlled, which wereontested and they had different sort of unfurlings of themt the situation room. and essentially the colors didn't shift much despe 150,000 international combat troops in afghanistan fighting to roll the taliban back. and even today the map doesn't look much different with u.s. troops down to 10 or 15,000, the afghan forces in the lead. >> schifrin: the book is "directorate s," the author
steve coll. steve, thank you very much for being here. thanks nick. appreciate it. >> sreenivasan: you can see nick's entire interview with steve coll on our home page, pbs.org,/newshour. >> sreeniv winning editorial cartoonist is using his drawings to highlight the growing problem of homelessness in southern california. jeffrey brown travel to san ego to get a first-hand look at the leading newspaper's cartoon , "street art." >> brown: for a newspaper cartoonist like steve breen these daysthere's one big bject. >> but if you study trump, you know there's things about his isps that are interesting, eyes, his nice, heavy, bushy eyebrows are fun. iod then just the, the beh and his speech is a treasure trove. >> brown: we watched breen in
action recently at his office at the "san diego union tribune," where he's been the editorial cartoonist since 2001, twice winning the pulitzer-prizeor >> cartoonists are drawn to big egos, drawn to know-it-all's, we're drawn to bullies. and trump has elements of all those things. >> brown: but the 47-year-old spent much of last year on a very different kind of assignment, something closer to home: sketching men and women living on the streets of san diego. >> one of the jobs of an editorial cartoonist is to stick up for the little guy. literally when you step out the door of this building, there are homeless people all over. and my editor and i got to talking one day, and we thought what can we do that's different? what can we do that's interesting? so we wanted to use my cartooning, my drawing, to cast a light on the problem.
>> brown: last year, homelessness surged in major cities up and down the west coast en by a lack of affordable housing, especially for those most in need. in san diego, overall homelessness rose by 5%, and the number not using sheby 18%. the city now has the fourth largest homeless population in the tion. >> when you sit and do a drawing you have to spend a little bit ime, you have to look in their eyes, you know, and you get a feel for them, in a different way. >> brown: breen wanted to find out who these people were. he called the series, "street art." he found the homeless all around the streets of his downtown office building. >> i wanted to ask people why they think they're homeless. i wanted to hear stories about their childhood. i wanted to find out, you know, if they've tried the local shelter, and what they liked or didn't like about it. i wanted to ut where they want to be in a year. >> brown: was it hard? i mean did people want to talk to you?
>> it was easy. it was incredibly easy. and i chalk that up to the fact that these people are rarely treated like a human being, you know? >> brown: breen's sketches, and the animated videos that accompanied them, told their stories. jenny said she had nowhere to go and she blew through her savings. she said she has serious mental illn well as other health issues but takes medication >> this guy right here tjack, he clait he was able to throw a 95 mile an hour fastball in high school. and i white sox looked at him, jack says his goal is to get to south carolina before he dies to see his granddaughter natalia.
he has her name tattooed on s arm-- the same arm he used to throw those fastballs. >> brown: on ourwith breen, we met jeff mourning, homeless for the last seven years. how hard is to live on the streets out here? >> it's actually really dangerous, people wait for people to go to sleep and then they try to rob them, especially >> brown: as it s mourning is something of a cartoonist himself-- his signs help him get by and have also gained attention online. so you're on youtube on funny homeless signs? >> yeah, you see me on there with a sign that says "spread some cheese on this broke cracker." >> brown: in his series, steve breen also highlighted what many considered to be the city's slow response to a deadly hepatitis a outbreak that struck san diego's homeless popn especially hard. >> this is a handwashing station that recenpped up near the corner of a and front street in
downtown san diego. health officials have alled 40 of these around town to combat a hepatitis a outbreak at has claimed at least lives and infected hundreds of people since it began in november of 2016. >> brown: so what do you hope people get from the series that you did? >> i hope that people try to resist the thinking that homelessness is caused by laziness, or some kind of weakness, or a flaw in character. r thatlly not what drives homelessness. it's mental illness, it's alcoholism, drug addiction and childhood abuse and neglect. >> brown: breen says he's trying to stay in touch with the people he drew, hoping new portraits will emerge. you can see his entire "street art" series on the "san diego union tribune's" website. for the pbs newshour, i'm jeffrey brown in san diego.
>> sreenivasan: the n.c.a.a. basketball tournament will captivate sports fans in the coming weeks. but here'she story of a team you won't see playing during march madness. tonight, tiny grace university in omaha, ka is playing in a regional post-season basketball tournament for christn colleges. but as mike tobias of pbs station net in nebraska tells us, this season is about more than wins and losses for the royals. >> reporter: coach brandon rogers is going easy on his team tonight. they've just played foda games in fiv, including trips to arkansas, oklahoma and south dakota. and the eight person team is down to seven. one player is sick and injured. for every big money, high profile college sports program you'll see during march madness, there's a tiny, low-profile
program like grace university. the royals compete in a national athletic association of about 100 small christian colleges, and have won a few championships over the years. unlike some major conference schools, grace doeave things like showers with heated floors, lockers with built in ipads, chartered jets to games. the royals travel in a rented 15 passenger van. it's a small college that started the season with a new young coach and big dreams. >> our goal is to get to regionals. it's never been done since we've joined the division onhe n.c.c.a., so we're excited. we're hungry. >> reporter: but a few weeks before games started, grace announced it was closing after this school year. low enrollment and financial challenges were the cause. ha>> my first reaction was >> like wait. what? no, i'm supposed to graduate
from here. >> obviously that hit us all very out of the blue, none of us expect that by any means. >> some day's are hard. and it's sucks.like this really what am i gonna do next year?" and helping each other through en some days we joke about it like, "ah, our schools closing! like what is going on?" and we make light of it. >> coach will park in two "rking spots with our van on trips and be like,oh, it's okay. our school's closing." >> reporter: the royals are playing with a sense of responsibility to leave a lasting memory of grace athletics. because they're the only team left on campus. closure canceling the men's basketball season. >> it is just something incredible, because everyone's fighting for something right now. you know what i mean? we're fighting for next year, the unknown. we don't know what it is, but we all are doing it together. >> if you have the seal she'll at least know the wrap-around pass is there. >> reporter: rogers and his royals know more about their next game, next oppothen
they do about next year. >> there's nothing we can do to change it so, juoy the time we have now. >> god is good. i knt he has a plan for it, and he's going to take care of all of us. i it's definitely broughtt closer together, and now we really take every game to heart. we were all really looking forward to next se and now, there is no next season >> good evening ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to the final home game here at grace university >> reporter: the royals are all sophes and juniors, most from other states. when grace closes in may, they'll head elsewhere to finish their degrees. some may have a chance to keep playing basketball together at
the same school. >> it's coming to an end. and it's hit, it hit reality or reality hit today. >> ended on a bang. super proud about that. >> this is it. this is the last time. and it's my last season. >> reporter: there's still have a few more practices and tournament games. a few re chances to make lasting memories. a last chance to make the last chapter of a small college's sports history a good one. for the pbs newshour, i'm mike tobias in omaha, nebraska. >> sreenivasan: and we'll be back shortly with a poet's brief but spectacular take on crting a space for people who have historically been left out of the arts. but first, take a moment to hear fr your local pbs station. it's a chance to offer your support, kind of stories you just saw, and keeps programs like ours on
>> sreenivasan: next, we turn to another installment of our weekly brief but spectacular series, where we ask people about their passion. tonight, we hear from award- winning poet elizabeth acevedo. raised in new york city, she is the daughter of dominican immigrants and frequently includes themes of race, gender, and oppression in her work. acevedo's latest book "the poet ecame available this week. s is for us writers. us readers. us girls who never saw ourselves on bookshelves, but we're still writing poems when we talk and we've been called teeth sucking
of snapping eyes, born bitter, brittle of tangled tongues, sandpaper that's been origamied into girls. not worthy of being the hero nor the author. but we were always medusa's favorite daughters. dreaming in the foreshadows, we composed ourselves. since childhood, taking pens to palms, as if we could rewrite the stanzas of lifelines that try to tell us we would never amount to much and when we were relegated to the margin, we still danced bachata in the footnotes. we still strong-armed the gatekeepers. we still clawed our ways onto the cover, brought our full selves to the page, our every color palette and bouquet of pansies and big hoops and these here hips and smart ass quips and popping bubble gum kisses. us girls who never saw ourselves on bookshelves but were still writing tales in the dark. us brown girls, brick built, masters of every metaphor and
every metamorphosis. catch us with fresh manicures, nail filing down, obsidian stones and painstakingly crafur own mirrors and stories into existence. yothis poem that i read fo all was my thinking through, s it mean to be someone who maybe didn't grow up with a mirror and wanting to create that n? to see your reflection and also show kids who might look like you, like ¡hey we're here. it's very much thinking about those of us who wrote even when we didn't see ourselves as main characters and for those of us who are writing now who hopefully will come forward wi more examples and who are also going to carry the torch of saying, our stare just as important as any other story in the cannon. i think a lot about the movements that are happening right now in terms of me too and times up. we are going to shift the status
quo, shift the way that women have been treated for so long and i just hope that the shift always remembers women or color and poor women and disenfranchised women who maybe may not have the loudest microphone in front of them. and i hope that those of us who may not be that loud are still thought of and remembered and passed the mic. my name is elizabeth acevedo and this is my brief but spectacular take on seeing you. reenivasan: you can find additional brief but spectacular episodes on our website, pbs.org/newshour/brief. there's word norki korean leader jong un has written to president trump. details to be announced at the white house this ening. fox ne reports kim sent the letter inviting the president to meet. abc and cnn report a south korean delon hand delivered the letter at the white house this evening.da follow-up s on our web site
pbs.org/newshour. and that's the newshour for tonight. join us online and again here tomorrow evening. for all of us at the pbs newshour, thank you and see you soon. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers le you. thank you. captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc ncaptby media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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