tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC December 3, 2013 9:00pm-10:01pm PST
>> that's what these scores said. >> how important do you think moral is? >> it is everything. when you think about what is the most important thing that's go on in the school buildings, interactions between teachers and students. if you have people that cannot -- if you can't give more of yourself than you have all right given, you're not giving your best to your students. >> there is a lot more about this that i want to talk about. thank you, chris. in march of this past year there was a series of violent attacks in the south of france. a soldier was killed in an unprovoked random shooting. a few days later two more soldiers were ambushed in killed in an unprovoked attack. and a few days later it happened again, a young rabbi and teacher was killed. he was trying to shield the kids from the gunman. two kids were killed and an 8-year-old girl from the school
and the gunman got away. three attacks. march 11, march 15th, and march 19th. in all three cases it was a single gunman with a large caliber handgun on a motorcycle. he kept the helmet on during it. he mounted on his chest a camera, a go pro. after they finally figured out who the shooter was, a nation wideman hunt, a stand off, the killer went down in a hail of bullets, a few days after it was over and police were doing the investigation, trying to figure out if he acted alone, the tv network al jazeera announced that the killer, before his death, sent them the video footage of all of his killings on a usb drive. and he mailed it to the paris officers of al jazeera along with a rambling diatribe
claiming credit and saying he was al qaeda and explaining why he did it. apparently part of the reason there was four days between the attacks, part of what he spent his time doing in those four day periods, is he was editing. he was working on a computer to edit the video footage that he shot on his go pro to make these three days of murders into a edited jihad video that he set to music and they wanted al jazeera to put it on the air. they didn't. they said in accordance with the code of ethics, given the video does not add any information, they will not postit. they have be asked for copies of the videos and all requests are being declined. on september 11th, 2001, the
terrorists attacks on new york city that day started roughly 9:00 a.m. that day. the print version of the newspapers were already out. the front page of the "new york times" on september 11th, 2001. it was about school dress codes and how hot morning tv is. the first edition of the "new york times" that contained reporting on what happened on september 11th, 2001, that was the edition that came out on september 12th. in that day's paper, in the september 12th, they ran a
by a photographer named richard drew. it shows a man falling. falling from the upper floors of the world trade center to his death. a lot of photos were taken of people that died that way they day. it is estimated a couple hundred people may have died that way on 9/11. their images, falling from buildings, they were captured by multiple photographers in still images and on video. the "new york times" and other videos, that ran the images, they did not run those images again after that day. now whether there was an overt backlash against them, or whether they just thought better of it with the passage of time, it's hard to figure out now with retrospect, but that was it. they were published in the immediate aftermath, but then they stopped being broadcast and published. it's not illegal to publish them.
you can find your way to those imans. every anniversary people write about what it meant to see those images. but media organizations have stopped showing those images of their own volition. and those are not easy decisions for media organizations to make, but the media does make those decisions. just because you can publish something does not mean that you should in every instance. today, we were talking about this phenomenon in our business. in our news meeting producers here were talking about going through the footage here at msnbc in 2005 with the aftermath of hurricane katrina. going through that footage, taking care to not show dead
bodies, dead americans floating in the waters in the streets of new orleans. more than 1800 americans were killed in the aftermath of katrina. there is no reason that any of us should be shielded from that truth. but at some point, does it become irresponsible to graphically show the bodies of those who cannot concept to the release of those, whose loved ones may be learning about their family member from watching television. you want smart people of sound judgment, sober reasoning, and sensitivity and courage to consider all of the sides. to make very hard decisions and make them slowly and correctly. there is something that sociologists wall the werther effect. there does seem to be a provable observable link between intensity for suicides and people killing themselves. it's a suggestive effect that
when excessive attention is paid to suicides and specifically the details of why a person committed suicide and the method they chose, the aftermath. it's not necessarily wrong to report things like that, but publicity of that kind has been linked, scientifically linked, observed in lots of places over a long period of time now to cause more people to kill themselves. so there is an element of responsibility in reporting on suicides, right? a lot of media organizations have tried to be overtly conscious. if you look at the canadian broadcasting, they have their policy of reporting suicides on their website. it's very easy to find. it says we're sensitive in handling attempts and desperate
acts. we will explain the act in detail, but we do not risk influencing vulnerable people. after the virginia tech shooting in 2007, the worst mass shooting in history, that ended in the suicide of the killer, nbc news in this building received in the mail a multimedia dossier that was prepared by the virginia tech killer. he seems to have started putting it together a week before the shootings. because he got the zip code wrong, it did not show up until a week later. then nbc had to decide about the news worthiness of the video. there was still images that he took of himself trying to look like a stuff guy, or a
sympathetic guy in some pictures. it was material that no other news organization had and it did shed light on why this deranged young man did what he did. so yes, that information may be arguably could add to the public's understanding of what happened in the worst mass shooting in american history. that horrible day at virginia temperature in 2007. this was material organized by the killer to glorify himself and excuse what he did. it seemed like it was designed to terrorize more people. most of the photos were him pointing a gun at a camera. essentially showing the rest of the country the last thing that his victims saw before he took their lives. nbc made the decision to hand the entire thing over to federal law enforcement authorities.
they kept a copy for themselves, they combed through it very carefully. they put together a very carefully edited nudes package. it was a small fraction of the total materials they aired or described. the press in this country is a free press. they can do whatever we want. we can publish whatever we want and broadcast whatever we want. but with that freedom comes great responsibility. the press is not just an amplifying system for raw information. we're not just a means of disseminating information that we get access to. the press makes decisions all the time about what is right to publish and what is wrong to publish. what is a value to the public's understanding and what is not of value and would only cause unnecessary pain or harm if it were broadcast. the name of the rape victim does not need to be part of the story, right?
the bodies at the crash site don'ted need to be shown for you to understand that people were killed in that crash. the death of daniel pearl in pakistan can be described but not shown. his killers wanted it to be shown again and again. and these calls are not always simple. when saddam hussein was executed in iraq, was the particular brutality of that execution just an obscenity that was beside the point of his death? or was the sectarian screaming and the chaos and the brutality of that execution and his last moments an important part of the story? and for what his death would mean in an ongoing way for iraq and for us? when the "new york times" found that the bush administration was wiretapping without court orders, they were told the paper would have blood on it's hands even it would be responsible for deaths of americans in the next terrorists attacks if they
published that story. the "new york times" held that story for a year. conveniently or inconveniently, they held it until after the 2004 election when president bush was reelected. "the times" on that story for a year is why edward snowden took his rev liegss further this year to "the guardian" in britain. today, the editor of "the guardian" has only published about 1% of what edward snowden gave them. is that decision not to publish 99% an issue of bravery, intimidation? is that judgment? they are deciding, in effect, what we get to know about what our government does based on their judgment of what counts as news. and their judgment conceivably of what harm they could cause by releasing to the public what
they as a news organization are privileged to know that the rest of us to do. it is a very, very uncomfortable thing. it is part of why the job of a free and responsible press is a hard thing, a hard job, hard to do well. you want the people that do it to be worthy of the responsibility they have. tomorrow morning in a law officer in danbury, connecticut. phone calls will be made available to the phone calls made the morning of the sandy hook shootings. the victims said they did not want those tapes to ever become available to the public. but a judge was ruled in the favor and appeals were dropped, and tomorrow morning in connecticut the media for the first time will get those tapes. and then what? now it's up to the good judgment of the media to decide whether those tapes should be publicly
broadcast. whether what they will add to the understanding of the massacre adds to the additional pointless trauma that will be caused to the families. it was an "associated press" lawsuit that made this happen. in all of ap's news stories, they started adding this particular sentence at the end of the news stories. the ap will review the content and determine what will meet the standards for publication. the ap's own published standards say without a compelling reason to do so they will not publish obscenities, profanities, or vulgarities. obscene, vulgar, and profane are in the eye of the beholder. if you just take the common dictionary definition, obscene, offensive to morality or decency. you can see the weight of the decision that will come down on all of our heads tomorrow
morning, right? this is the decision. this is the judgment call. is the content of those tapes, the audio recordings of the calls for help made during the master of those first graders, is the content of those tapes, the sound of the pleas for help going to increase public understanding of that incident so much that it outweighs the offense to morality and decency of putting them on display? our press is a free press, and nobody tells the press what to do and it's one of the most important things in our democracy. but with that comes great responsibility, and the press will make the decision of what to broadcast, come tomorrow
morning, which is a school day, in december, in connecticut. joining us now is betsy west. she is a former senior vice president at cbs news, thank you for coming in. >> thank you, rachael. >> when the people who run news organizations like ours decide whether or not to air this kind of sensitive material, what is there to consider? >> first and fore most, everyone will be aware of what a difficult day this will be tomorrow in newtown. i think they will be listening to those tapes to see if there is anything news worthy in them. do we learn anything that we didn't already know about this case from those tapes? anything about the reaction of the police, for example. it's hard to say until you heard the tapes, but i think that's what people will be listening to
first and fore most. what i'm skirting is the difficult question of what do you do if you hear gunshots on those tapes? i think that will be a tough one. you know, those are -- we live in a society that is used to imans of violence. on the media ul a the time, television, movies, but this is real violence, these are real people. and just the sound of it, it is more horrible than anything you can think of that you see in some, you know, action video game in a way. >> now that we know what those gunshots were the sound of in those moments. >> exactly. >> when you think about how to balance these things, you have to think about the harm that might be caused. do you have to think about the specificity of the audience?
families have said they don't want these released. they have a moral imperative to make that case, and we have a moral imperative to respond to it. how do you weigh victim's families in a case like this against the public's own interest and interest against hearing this? >> there is a right to know what happened. the public has a right to know what happened. very often, i think in these horrible tragedies you come into a conflict in it the public interest in knowing about this and in the rights to privacy for the victims and the family members of the victim. and that just seems like it happens. you mentioned 9/11, you know that certainly happened in 9/11 when i think many family members felt enough, we don't want to see any more of this. and you know, i was thinking
back to that first day, i know that i was at cbs news then. i know that there were images of falling bodies. that made it on to the air in that first hour. and then i think it was a conscious decision. we said no. this is just too horrible. it's just -- it really is just too terrible. >> does that work in the opposite direction? i think that was a very interesting thing. there was a reaction within the media that it was wrong. there might have been a reaction from the public, it almost didn't matter. >> it was internal. >> does it go the other direction? if tomorrow there are ten news organizations in that law office, and nine of them decide this does not add enough to the news value and it will cause too many people pain we will not air it, does that then create an unstoppable bit of momentum where everybody else has to chase them into it? >> everybody else is under competitive pressure to think about it. it does definitely push people
and i think it seems to me i can't imagine these tapes will not find their way on to the internet. >> people can access them through public records officers presumably if they want. >> people will be able to see them, and i think that every news organization will wrestle with whether or not they feel there is something in those tapes that makes them news worthy. >> putting them on the air in a way that somebody could accidentally come across them without trying to find them is a different than than putting them out there in a way for people looking for them can find them in terms of the trauma. former senior vp at cbs news, it's great to have you here, thank you. le girl like for chri? i'm thinking the ford fusion... ho, ho, ho!....the what? i need a car that's stylish and fashionable... especially in my line of work. now do you have a little lemonade stand? guys, i'm in fashion! but i also need amazing tech too... like active park assist... it practically parks itself. and what color would you like? i'll have my assistant send you over some swatches...
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in addition to being on blocksd push the car off the blocking and on to your foot. your car also managed to break that's what this congress is. and in this met for, you pay ar on blocks. this congress has been amazing for a very long time. this year will set the record for congress doing less than ever before, but the record before this year will be last year. the first year that john boehner took over as speaker. this congress is amazing. but small glimmer of hope today. a tiny blink and you might miss it sign of progress today. first, the house of representatives decided today to
add a whole extra day of work to their calendar between now and the end of the year. they planned to give themselves 239 days off work this year, but now they're giving themselves only 238 days. they just decided they will be in session next monday. which means that next week, your to work a full five day week which they never do. so we should probably all get the fainting couches ready, they might pass out. baby steps. that was number one. they're going to work. sign of progress number two, the house actually passed a thing today. the house actually passed something im and substantive that has a good chance of not dieing on it's way across the hall to the senate. they voted to keep the ban on plastic gun that's cannot be detected by metal detectors. ronald reagan signed i 1y
kept it in place for another ten years. the house of representatives t . it was a voice vote. they did it, they passed what should be the easiest thing in the entire world to pass, but f sure if they could do it. that's not all, the third glimmer of getting something done for the worst congress ever today was a report from politico.com. part in the house, they are reportedly rather close to a deal. which might result in us having a budget as a country. that would be neat. and would at least partially replace the self inflicted decided to be stupid painful cuts known as the sequester. it could finally be at hand. maybe. there is a catch.
it is senator patty murray, she is working with paul ryan on this. you might remember him from the big deficit reduction in 2010. he was part of that and he killed it. he was part of that ena he killed it. he was about part of the grand bargain in 2011 which was killed by paul ryan. so yes, patty murray and paul ryan are reportedly close to a deal that would kill the sequester, get us a budget, and all sorts of reasonable things that everybody in washington says they want. paul ryan's history of working on deals like this is he likes to be seen working on them before he breaks free and calls them impure and kills what he helped to negotiate. i'm not getting excited about this yet.
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president, today each of the seated protestors who you see here in this ceremony each passed on a responsibility, a certain task to the people kneeling before them. among the group, agreeing to take up the mantle, was this young congressman joe kennedy of massachusetts. [ male announcer ] here's a question for you. if every u.s. home replaced one light bulb with a compact fluorescent bulb, the energy saved could light how many homes? 1 million? 2 million?
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he had no food for 25 days, only water. people came to see him through the fast. he asked senator robert kennedy who was running for president so come to california to see him and talk with him. >> i knew about when he went on the fast in the binning, and i sent him a telegram at that time because i was concerned about his own health. i think that he is needed, that kind of influence that is committed to nonviolence and committed to trying to perform some good for his people it is desperately needed for these people and the country as a whole. about a week ago he got in touch with me and asked if i would come out. >> after 25 days of not eating, he broke the fast with bobby
kennedy at his side. mr. chavez first took communion, and senator kennedy passed him a piece of bred. his first food after 25 days. that happened 45 years ago. this winter, it is elisao medena. he started last month with immigration reform. the day after thanksgiving, president obama and first lady michelle obama went to visit him and the activities on the national mall where they had been without food for 20 days. he said he supported their cause, he believed it was not a matter of if but when, they would finally take a vote on immigration, but he also voiced concern for the health of the people that had been fasting for so long. he suggested they take a break for their own health, let somebody else fast next. today, he did that after 22 days without food, he broke his fast. he passed it on to senator
robert kennedy's grandson, congressman joe kennedy of massachusetts. he will join with the others in fasting for 24 hours and he will pass it on to others. this is part of an emotional and the house to take on immigration reform. this is erica who came here from mexico when she was a child. she was on the cover of "time" magazine. earlier this year her mother and brother were taken from their home at 9:00 p.m. during a night raid. she posted this video online the night that it happened. an activist asked people to call immigration authorities to try to get her mother and brother released. this is a clip that she posted that night. this is kind of amazing. >> hello, my name is erica, and
i'm talking to you right now because my mother and brother were just taken away by immigration. they just came to my house. they knocked on my door, my brother was outside with the neighbor. and they just came to ask for my mom. they said they were not going to do anything to her. and my mom came outside and they took her for no reason. this is not just happening to me it's happening to families everywhere. we can't let this happen anymore. i need everybody to stop pretending like nothing is wrong. to stop pretending that we're just living normal lives because we're not. this could happen to any of us any time.
>> you see the slate come in there at the end about the number to call, to tell immigration authorities to let them go. the day after that raid, her brother was released but her mother was not. she was driven to the border, but at the last minute she was granted reprieve that allowed her to remain in this country with her family until her case could come up for review. on the exact same day as the raid happened, erica had just started a new job working for kristin sinima. she has eligible immigrant work status. on the day she started working there they came for her mom and brother. now she is having to leave her job.
she is returning home to arizona now to help fight her mother's deportation. in a letter sent to her colleagues, she says the politically charged immigration debate has always been personal for me and, and, in many ways, my life symbolizes the most controversial flash points of the debate. i have lost members of my community and family to deportations. i was awarded deferred action, and jan brewer took away my right to a drivers license. family separation by deportation. erica's mother's case is expected to come up for we view just after the new year in january. it will decide whether or not she is allow todd stay in this country with her kids. joining us now is erica who is cofounder of the arizona dream
act coalition and a former outreach director for arizona senator kristin sinema. >> can you tell me about this decision to leave the job at the congresswoman's office and head home to try to help your mom? >> yeah, of course. i mean it was a very tough decision. i feel like it was for me, a great opportunity for the first time i was able to use my work permit that i had just gotten in november to be able to, you know, work on the issue that i care about the most inside of congress, right? and try to influence people within. unfortunately, you know, things have not worked out in congress for many reasons, and the fact is that my own life is pending on that and the fact that, you know, i can work for a congresswoman, but i cannot drive here because i don't have a driver's license, and my
mother can be deported at any time and they don't have documents. >> you have been living this in your own feel, you have been an activist at home in arizona, you are a cofounder at the dream foundation, what was it like coming to congress and trying to work on this issue specifically for congress. what is the situation in congress compared today what you expected? >> it was frustrating. for me, i get a lot of home when i work with families. and you know we were able to win a little bit, you know, a little bit at a time with battles, sometimes fighting deportation cases, and so that gave me a lot of hope and i feel like coming to congress and seeing the political games that came with political reform, and the deportations, and nothing has
happened. i want today tell my story to every staffer and every colleague, but the fact is that, you know, as much as i would tell my story, i would hear the same thing back. there is so much politically happening that sometimes the stories are not even getting through any more. it's frustrating, but at the same time i have the hope that we can keep doing this and, you know right now i cannot focus on being just in there in congress working on this because i do have my family and my family always comes first as my mom always taught me since i was little. so once i do this and stop my mom's deportation once again i will continue working for my community to make sure that we stop every single deportation that's not supposed to be happening. >> what are you expecting from your mom's case when it comes up again in january? what do you think will happen? >> the president said that he is not deporting people that are low, you know, priority.
people who have no criminal background, or anything like that. my mother is a 55-year-old woman who is an amazing person. you know, who does everything for her family. so i hope that he follows that. what he has said, and they grant her, you know, maybe deferred action like i have it, or a way to stay here without having to go to ice every single year to ask for another year of stay. it's very stressful for me and my family. and we want to keep her here. she has been an amazing leader now in the community as well as in arizona and she has her own organization of mothers, and she is fighting for herself and my family as well. >> erica andiola, leaving her job as a congressional staffer today to go home and help her mom, good luck, stay in touch. i need you. i feel so alone.
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today, we learned about what president obama is planning on doing between now and christmas eve. starting today, and every day between now and christmas eve, the white house says president obama is going to be doing some public thing every day to highlight good things about health reform, and to get people to sign up for insurance. december 23rd is the next big enrollment deadline for obama care, so the white house is
taking on a new effort to fight back against the law's extremely loud critics. you can find of feel the change in tone from the white house on this subject already. they don't sound like they're playing defense on the subject anymore. the president gave a short kickoff speak about it this afternoon in washington, d.c., and i think it was telling this was the biggest applause line in the speech. >> i have always said i would work with anybody to implement and improve this law effectively. you have good ideas, bring them to me. let's go. but we're not repealing it as long as i'm president. i want everybody to be sure of that. >> on thursday this week, the venue will be different, the crowd bill probably be a little younger, and the president will be forced off script undoubtedly because president obama on thursday is sitting down for a one-on-one hardball college
interview with chris matthews at american university. president obama and chris matthews on thursday. the interview can only be seen here on msnbc, this thursday, 7:00 p.m. eastern. whatever you're doing thursday night, i'm giving you plenty of advance notice, you have to see this live when it happens. we'll be right back. ♪ [ male announcer ] how could switchgrass in argentina, change engineering in dubai, aluminum production in south africa, and the aerospace industry in the u.s.? at t. rowe price, we understand the connections of a complex, global economy. it's just one reason over 70% of our mutual funds beat their 10-year lipper average. t. rowe price. invest with confidence. request a prospectus or summary prospectus with investment information, risks, fees and expenses
the day building a play set begins with a surprise twinge of back pain... and a choice. take up to 4 advil in a day or 2 aleve for all day relief. [ male announcer ] that's handy. ♪ debunktion junction, what's my function? true or false? obama care does not, i repeat, does not cover babies? exhibit a, when this man tried to get insurance for his family, he was told he could buy a plan
for his wife and himself and three young children, but his youngest child was out in the cold. obama care does not cover babies. that was his story and it went directly from the new york post to the fox news channel. >> i assumed it was a glitch, an administrative issue so i called up the new york health exchange and was advised, no, they don't allow children to be on family plans under 2 years of able. >> obama care doesn't cover babies? is that true or false? false. it turns out the reason this particular dad did not get coverage for his baby is he forgot to list the baby when he signed up for insurance. quoting capitol, new york, the mixup appears to be routed in the dad's application, which originally listed three of his children when he has four. when the clerical error was
discovered, it was fixed, except by john boehner, who is still pedaling the story as true. i'm not sure i expect fox news to correct the story, but don't you expect the speaker of the house to? next up, true or false -- that was amazing. sorry. the desk like ate it. true or false, president obama is closing the u.s. embassy at the vatican? from the conservative washington times newspaper, obama's call to close vatican embassy is slap in the face to roman catholics. they say obama insults catholics in vatican embassy shutdown. jeb bush said hopefully it's not retribution for catholics opposing health care. they called it just the latest anti-religious dispute. weakening america as a global leader. sounds terrible. he's closing the embassy to the vatican. true or false? he's not closing the embassy. he's moving it closer.
moving it to the same compound as the same embassy as italy. the new location is also closer to the actual vatican than the old one is, so no, the president is not closing the vatican embassy. that's false and crazy, and the whole idea of moving it was the bush administration's idea before the obama administration carried it out, but that doesn't carry well on world net daily or presumably with jeb bush. take care, jeb bush, maybe it is too crazy to be true, and you should take it easy. and today, the craziest story was the dead mice being parasuited into guam to combat snakes. the story says at anderson air force base, in guam, they want
to control the street snakes because brown tree snakes are not native, there's no natural predator to keep them in check. turns out the snakes are vulnerable to acetminphene. so the government has been dropping thousands of dead mice loaded with tylenol into the trees in guam to be poisonous debate for the snakes. the person running the program is a director of supervisory wildlife biology. his name is dan vice. actually, this story is true. >> u.s. department of agriculture assisted state director wildlife biologist dan vice explains the process that is proving successful at controlling the ground tree snake population. >> what we're going to be
watching is the aerial delivery of toxins from the helicopter. the helicopter is going to make flights over the forest at relatively slow speeds. there are going to be certified >> the baits, the drugged mice. just when you thought it was safe to trust nothing, the mice from guam restore our faith that sometimes the crazenist things in the news are the true ones. now it's time for "last word with lawrence o'donnell." >> the president wants every to know there are only 20 days left to purchase health insurance coverage that will be effective january 1st, and today, the president picked up one very happy customer.