tv The Van Jones Show CNN September 21, 2019 4:00pm-5:00pm PDT
antonio? i'll get it. get to know geico and see how much you could save on renters insurance. good evening. and welcome to "the van jones show." look, this week in washington, d.c. was just another one for the books. we got new questions about potential unethical conversations between president trump and a foreign leader. new deep state conspiracy theories going around. the president's closest allies are stonewalling congress. and rudy giuliani is contradicting himself on national television. in other words, pretty much more of the same. but tonight we are going to give you a break. we've got a breath of fresh air for you. the crowd surfing line dancing,
2020 hopeful who wants to give every adult american $1,000 a month. andrew yang is here! [ applause ] oh, i'm so happy. also, we are going to hear from a new generation of leaders that are working to protect the planet. they are mobilizing millions of people all around the world. i'm very excited to have the climate youth leadership here. also you have probably seen this had video. all right. look at that, so cute. and tonight we're going to meet the tiny stars of that viral sensation that's giving me so much hope. these little babies the best friends finnegan and maxwell are here. i can't wait to meet them. it's going to be a great show. [ applause ] let's get right into it. please welcome to "the van jones show," 2020 presidential candidate andrew yang! [ cheers and applause ] in the house. i love, i love it.
my man. good to see you, sir. beautiful, beautiful. >> hello, everyone. >> ah, man, grab a seat. listen, man. it is an honor to see you. you have completely shaken up the conversation, bringing in all these new thoughts and ideas. before we get to that, back to this for one second. this whistleblower controversy. how concerned are you, lots of allegations, lots of questions. how concerned are you that the white house might be trying to stifle this whistleblower who is trying to tell us something about something that's happening in the administration? >> um, i'm deeply concerned. but unfortunately we've seen this before. and the thousandth verification that donald trump is donald trump in some ways it's disappointing but not surprising. my job is to beat him at the ballot box in 2020 if he's still there. >> well, listen, let's talk about that. how are you going to do it? you have such an un-orthodox mention, un-orthodox style. how are you going to beat donald
trump? >> well, i like math. [ laughter ] and i'm one of two democratic candidates in the field that 10% or more of donald trump voters said that they would support. so if i'm the democratic nominee, we win the whole thing. >> i spent timeout on the west coast. a lot of stuff that you're talking about for the future is already there. but also the split between the rich and poor. >> completely. >> that's kind of given you a little bit of a leg up in your policy proposals, your universal basic income. tell us a little bit more. such a big conversation in california. not a big conversation anyplace else. what is ubi and why will it work? >> if you've heard anything about my campaign, my plan is on to give a thousand dollars to every american adult. thomas payne was for it. martin luther king was for it. and one place has had a dividend, alaska which gives
$1,000 to $2,000 of oil money to every alaskan every single year. what oil is to alaska, technology is to the entire country. because we're in an era where technology's going to do more and more of the work, and you have trillion dollars tech companies like amazon literally paying zero in taxes and that's not going to work for the american people. >> look, i mean, part of the thing is i think people want though to work. and i think there's a theory that if you're just going to be passing out checks to people that they're going to get the check and they're still going to be isolated, alone. what do you say to people who say people don't just want a check, they want a job. >> i am going to ask the people here in the studio audience. how many of you think that if you were getting a thousand dollars a month, you would work harder? look at that. virtually everyone. how many of you think that you would just hit the sofa and never get up? [ laughter ] we're on television, we can't raise our hand. [ laughter ] but if everyone watching this reflects on that, no one's going
to quit their job on $1,000 a month unless they're in a truly abusive or exploited situation, at which point they probably should be able to leave. so this is going to free us up to do more of the work we want to do naturally. it's also going to recognize the kind of would, that my wife does at home with our two boys every single day. one of our boys is autistic. raising kids is one of the most challenging things there is. yet right now we value it at zero. >> if everybody gets a thousand bucks, isn't a thousand dollars like the new zero? won't the inflation eat all that up? >> a couple of data points on this. you all remember voting for the $4 trillion bailout of wall street during the crisis? >> no. [ laughter ] >> yeah, that's what happened and there was not rampant inflation. if you look at our costs right now, inflation is centered in three areas. housing, education, and health care. if we had $1,000 a month, most of our consumer products would stay the same price. i have separate plans to try and
curb any price rises in those three areas, which unfortunately are three areas that make us miserable, housing, education, and health care. but those areas are not getting more expensive because we have many in our pockets. essentially it's the opposite. >> so how does your policy deal with that? >> well, i have separate plans to try and curb inflation in those three areas. but i'm happy to say this $12,000 a year that we'd all be entitled to, what would we spend it on in real life? daycares, car repairs. we could create a trickle-up economy. this would work not like the trickle down theory was over this last number of years. >> is this like in your mind like a panasia for everything? don't you need special solutions for say african-americans, for women, for other groups? yang wants to do this instead of having a racial justice initiative or gender justice
initiative. how do you respond to that? >> i agree that we need much more than this foundation. i see the freedom dividend as a base to build on. it's like the floor $1,000 a month where we can meet our basic needs. but that doesn't solve the problems. then you have to start working on racial inequities, on gender inequities. we need to build a house on top of the foundation. >> what's an andrew yang style racial justice initiative on top of the freedom dividend? >> on the criminal justice side, first i want to legalize marijuana nationwide. i want to go a step further. i want to pardon everyone who's in jail for a nonviolent marijuana-related offense on april 20th, 2021. >> you got your first round of applause. we might have some nonviolent drug offenders in here. [ laughter ] i want to get rid of private prisons. it makes no sense to have a motivation of profit on the other side. i want to get rid of a punitive
prison system that focuses on being poor. our current criminal justice system is not working. >> you know, because you have such a strong online presence, i meanac mean yang gang is all over the internet. so i decided i wanted to go online and get some questions. let's hear from somebody who actually is not here in the audience but wants to get their question answered by you. >> hi, andrew. i'm over 50, i know i don't look like it and i'm not worried about a robot taking over my job. my question for you is why should i and my fellow baby boomers support you? >> well, the problems i'm trying to address are the problems that got donald trump elected that we automated away millions of manufacturing jobs and those changes are now going to affect other types of workers. it seems like he's not worried about it. but boomers are facing a retirement crisis where half of aging americans will never actually be able to retire. so we need to put in place again this foundation that will help americans retire with dignity.
because we do not want to be a country where frankly people are working in convenience stores till the day they die in order to make ends meet. we are better than any. in my mind americans that have worked for decades have earned the right to retire with dignity. >> how does this feel for you to be -- i mean, you are not a well known person a couple years ago. >> no. nobody knew who andrew yang was, i know. >> how does that feel? >> it feels really great because we are waking up to the fact that there's nothing stopping a majority of citizens of a democracy from improving our own lives. actually, that's the only way it's going to happen. if you go to yang2020.com, you will see i have over 150 policies trying to solve all sorts of problems. a lot of them we can get done very, very quickly after i'm president. >> do you think people take it seriously enough? part of the thing is that you're such an unlikely candidate that people, they're not shooting at you. even donald trump doesn't have a bad name for you yet. [ laughter ] is that a good thing or a bad thing? >> well, donald trump hasn't
messed with me online because he knows i'm actually better at the internet than he is. [ laughter ] [ applause ] and though i started out an unlikely candidate, i am now sixth in national polls. i've made every debate. we are one of only a couple of campaigns that has been consistently growing. democrats around the country are trying to figure out who's the best candidate to take on donald trump. when they realize that i am peeling off hundreds of thousands of affected trump voters as well as libertarians in addition to democrats, they are going to realize that i am the best candidate to beat donald trump in 2020. >> yeah. >> you know, help me understand a couple things here. first of all online you are growing but a lot of people thought there was a conspiracy to keep you invisible. i got just killed like why are you trying to erase it? >> let yang speak. [ laughter ] >> do you feel like there is a reluctance in the part of the media to give you your
opportunities? do you feel like you're being made invisible in any way? >> big picture, the media's treatment of us i think has been colored by the fact that they just didn't know what to do with me. and i'm not going to knock them for that. but now it's indisputable that i'm one of the top six or seven candidates in the race that we're going to be here the whole time that we have the resources to play all the way through 2020. but i'm happy to say now the media's woken up to that fact. >> let me ask you this stuff. we already have a business dude in the white house. >> please don't compare me to that guy. >> i'm just saying! somebody's gotta say it to you, man. you're a business dude. you've got no global experience and you're coming in making big promises. why shouldn't we be terrified? i got ptsd from the last one. [ laughter ] >> so donald trump gives entrepreneurs a bad name. real entrepreneurs like myself regard him as a marketing charlan and a braud. he doesn't represent all of us. i'm the last person who would
say i'm going to run government like a business because that's nonsense. running the government is much more similar to running a national nonproof the that i founded where you have to have a vision and enactivate energy and excitement around that vision and try and build consensus. that's much, much more analogous. >> we've got a lot more to talk about you when we get back. what would that mean for the country also? he actually wants to sit down and talk to the saturday night live comedian. all that and more when we get back. [ applause ] award winning interface. ♪ ♪ award winning design. ♪ ♪ award winning engine. ♪ ♪ the volvo xc90. our most awarded luxury suv.
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democratic presidential candidate andrew yang in the house. hey, listen, i want to talk with you very seriously. there is this guy shane gillis got caught on a podcast saying disparaging things about asian-americans, disparaging things about you personally. everybody says this guy should be fired and you didn't. >> well, the first reaction i had was obviously hostility, confusion, anger, and so i did what came naturally to me which was i sat down with my wife and actually watched some of shane's comedy just to try and get a sense as to who he was and where he was coming from. and after i watched some of his work for let's say 45 minutes or so, i looked at my wife and we talked about it. and then we both thought that he was not evil or malignant or really hateful and actually advocating, you know, for any kind of racist ideology that he struck me as a still figuring it
out comedian from central pennsylvania who told some terrible and offensive jokes. and that to me did not rise to a level where he should lose his job. >> wow. >> and so -- and as someone who has personally actually called out, then i thought, well, if anyone should be offended, it's me. if i don't think he has lose his job, then i should probably say something to that effect because maybe it would make a difference. >> well, maybe you haven't lived in the united states for the last year or two, but that's not normal. first of all he did get fired despite your speaking up for him. but we live in a time now where we have what we call, as you know, cancel culture, man. and if you do something wrong, you're supposed to be out of here. it could've been five minutes ago, it could've been 20, 30 years ago. do you have a view that we maybe have gone too far in the direction of a lack of grace or a lack of forgiveness? >> well, my campaign slogan is humanity first.
i mean, we're all people. we're all human. we all make mistakes. we're all fallible. i certainly would hate to be judged by something i did 25 years ago, happily no one is paying in iattention. [ laughter ] but i think that our standards have become unfair. and we've become unduly vind ickitiv and punitive. we are all human and we can forgive. >> one of my friends said to me is let's say someone makes a mistake and we turn on them and say, hey, you should be fired from your job, you should be canceled. and what happens two months later we move on, or that person's life has still been changed. so to me those things don't necessarily balance out. >> but when you think about justin trudeau? blackface, all that kind of stuff. he came out, he apologized.
do you hold him to a higher standard because he's an elected official? how do you think about that stuff? >> i mean, that's a tough one in part because i'm not black and so him wearing blackface, i would actually refer to someone who has more direct experience with that form of racism. he also is an elected official. >> i'm tell you, people might get mad at me. to me if you did something 10 years ago, 15 years ago and it was stupid, if you apologize, then i don't care. in other words, if you care about it, then i don't care. but if you don't care about, now i care, right? because if you're saying i did it and screw you and i can do what i want to do, now i am concerned. but i do think that people should be able to apologize. another issue has to do with how you break in with the african-american community. and i got a question online for you about that i want you to answer. >> i think your policy platform is so transformative. yet, so many people haven't heard about you yet. so i just want to hear what are
your next steps to make sure you secure that vote and we win this nomination. yang gang. [ laughter ] >> it's coming on platforms like this show. i just need to do the hard work to introduce myself to as many voters as possible, particularly people in communities like perhaps the black community that don't know that much about me. but if you dig in, you find that my vision for the country is inclusive and will be transformative to our way of life. >> you know, when obama came in as the first black president, i was raising two black boys. it was unbelievably powerful for them. have you thought about the fact you would be our first asian-american president. what do you think the impact on the country is for that cerealing to get broken through? >> i think that my becoming president would be another transformative moment for the country, certainly growing up as the son of immigrants myself, i never imagined i would be in this seat or in this race. but now that i'm here, i believe
that i can help move our country forward. to the extent that makes asian-americans very happy and proud, that makes me very happy and proud. >> you are raising two boys. you mentioned that one is on the spectrum with area road to autism. what have you learned from him? what has he taught you in your journey together? >> i learned so much from my son. and when he was a little bit younger, we didn't realize he was autistic and so you're trying to figure out what's normal, like, is this normal. i have to say for me and this is probably true for many parents. like you relive your own childhood a little bit. so the fact that he is autistic, there are some of the things he is experiencing that actually brings me back and makes me think, like, wow i think that i had some of the same approaches to the world that he does, and i'm really eager to help him thrive and prosper. >> yeah. being a parent and kind of being in a political environment like
we're in, we really need folks like you. i just want to say, like your character, your integrity. you're just a beautiful human being. >> oh, thanks, man. [ cheers and applause ] >> i really do. >> thank you. >> andrew yang. now, listen, you guys are going to hear a lot more from this guy. when we come back, generation z, are they energized? what do they want in a candidate? you are going to get a chance to hear from these first-time voters. i know you watched that viral video of these little kids hugging on the internet, these little munnchkins and nuggets are in the studio. you are going to meet them when we get back. [ applause ] at verizon, we're building the most powerful 5g experience for america. that's why the nfl chose verizon. because they need the massive capacity of 5g with ultra wideband, so more screaming, streaming, posting fans...
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closed captioning brought to you by invent help. we are just clamoring to get the youth vote. they are doing youtube interviews. they are doing podcasts, pitching selfies, pitching plans for free college tuition. this week bernie sanders spoke to college students at unc chapel hill in north carolina. >> if you have friends out there who think the political system is [ bleep ], tell them that instead of just complaining,
they must get involved into the political process. >> look, i agree with that. now, young voter turnout hit historic highs in the 2018 midterm elections. that's what ushered in that whole big blue wave. but now democrats and conservatives both are working to energize their millennial and gen-z voters for 2020. i spoke to a group of first-time voters. all of these are college students from across the political spectrum right where bernie was in north carolina. they had a lot to say. take a look. how many of you are excited about the 2020 election? it's like barely up. >> i think i'm very excited to see trump out of the white house. but i am also not super duper enthusiastic about what i'm seeing from all of the democratic candidates right now. right now with biden leading a lot of the polls i am kind of scared. >> i really think what scott was
just that there hasn't been a democratic yet who's really brought out a lot of enthusiasm for me. so i am very much excited to see trump go. i do not want that man to serve another term as president of the united states. i do not believe he represents the values of this country. however, there hasn't been a democratic candidate that's really energized me. >> we have 3,000 democratic. you said not one of them? you can't find one you like? >> yeah. it's really unfortunate. they're all kind of talking in circles i believe. >> i am pumped to vote for president trump. i think that he does appeal to the young conservative because the number one issue facing college students after we graduate, we need a workforce to go into. and a strong economy with lower taxes with more money in our pockets being able to actually achieve the american dream with a strong economy is our number one issue. >> as i see it now, there is no viable option for a conservative issue like myself. >> is that because trump doesn't appeal to you? >> no. he hasn't appealed for me since
the start. it's been really difficult to see the way in which the republican party has suffered under his leadership. >> i think i am open to voting for president trump but only on the condition really that the democratic base can't get a reasonable moderate candidate out. on the debate stage i think it's really joe biden that's the voice for moderation. most others outcompete each other on who can be more progpressive. >> he aligns so moderately and almost sounds like a borderline republican. there was a joke on twitter the other night that he was the best republican on the democratic debate stage. >> why has donald trump made you so mad? >> this man has a long history of racism even during his time as a real estate developer in new york city. he's made some very misogynist and racist remarks that i definitely feel, you know, are not things i can agree with or would like to see in the white house. >> how does that make you feel when the president of the united
states is a racist? >> i think it's a tactic used by the left when they run out of options for the debate. i think they just label you a racist. >> i think president trump's policies as racist. his administration is an acting racist policy. >> like what? >> like trying to build a border wall on our southern border that is going to hurt people that do not look like you and me. >> i think a stronger border and better immigration policy isn't in itself racist. i think that we have a border as of now and fixing the areas that are broken along our southern border are very important. >> but the problem is that the president has used this rhetoric that is inflammatory. it's frankly embarrassing for reasonable americans who think that we need to enforce our borders, the wall. and i think it does have racist connotations behind it. >> i completely agree with what you've just said. but this is where i want to outline what the problem is specifically on the democratic side. what was it? eight of the ten people raised their hands when they said they wanted to decriminalize border crossings.
and it is problematic in the sense that no one should be thrown six months in federal prison and then be forced to pay a fine just because they crossed the border legally. but at the same time it is a crime to cross the border illegally. >> were you all born in the united states? i was not born in the united states. i am from guatemala, and so i have to pay very close attention to federal law every day. >> so, you were adopted by american citizens, you were born in guatemala. is that right? and at one point your parents had to sit you down and talk to you about what might happen if there was a raid. is that right? >> yeah. so, the increase in i.c.e. rates was crazy. i would see on social media be careful i.c.e. is here almost all of the time. and so just going somewhere could be terrifying because, yes, i am a united states citizen, but they will try so
hard to get me just because i'm brown. and so i have to remember what to say that i'm here legally and pray to god that they will listen. >> you can reconcile these two desires, right? the desire to have borders and also treat people william within those borders. it requires moderation in terms of rhetoric which is not something that we are seeing today i think on either side. >> free college. i would imagine if i was in college free college would sound great. >> i'd take it. >>. >> you wouldn't turn it down. what's wrong with free college? >> i think -- >> you had free high school. >> well, now our taxes went towards that. >> that's fine. so okay. but here's the deal. help me understand. it's so much fun to talk to somebody about this. do you think free college is socialism? >> i think it's towards socialism. >> public fifth grade is not socialism. public 12th grade is not socialism. but public 13th grade is
communism. help me understand that. >> i'd like to jump in. higher education, particularly college is highly regressive as an institution. so something like 10% of all college graduates come from the bottom core tile of income. i think americans need to understand that who's actually benefitting here. and very often it's the middle upperclass and the upper liz. elizabeth warren has done a good job of addressing this in saying that these policies may cap at the top 5%. the problem starts earlier. we have to address systemic inequalities in education before college because very often these inequities, they accumulate. then by the time people reach college it's too late. >> can somebody make the argument that because college is so expensive of course that's why rich people go? >> i would say exactly what you said. the rich people are already going to college because it's an option for them. there are so many people in this country, it's never even something they consider because they know it's way too expensive. how much is tuition in your
city? >> something like 76k. >> yeah. when it's one of the top universities in the world. but it's $76,000 a year. now i go to a state university where it's a lot cheaper. it's a lot like my tuition i think is like $5,000 a semester tuitionwise. but i know people personally who have had to drop out not because they didn't want to but because they had to go work because they literally could not afford their tuition. that is why so many people are dropping out. young people in college pressure should be graduating with good academics and it shouldn't be how can i afford my tuition bill. >> so i think we are only talking about a traditional four-year college as the only option where it's not. i think we need to destigmatize two-year universities because they are very good options and they have graduation rates with people who go straight into the workforce who have a living wage. so i think that instead of trying to figure out how we're going to raise everyone's taxes and pay everyone's debts, i think we need to destigmatize
these different options for people so that they can go and be able to have a successful life through that way. so there is a lot of dialogue debate discussion in this generation. it's really inspiring. when you hear us talking about the young voter. when you hear us talking about young people gen-z, what are we getting wrong? >> i think they're just looking to score us to win our votes, to pander to us. i think they're treating us like children and it's time they wake up. i think people have voted us the largest voting eligible population for the 2020 election as well as possibly the highest turnout. i think it's time we are brought to the table with both sides with our ideas. >> i finally agree with you on something. [ laughter ] i wholeheartedly agree with that. young people are just considered, you know, the future of this country but not as present active members and participants in our democracy. it's very seldom or very rare that we are consulted in a
political campaign that we are engaged by our city council members or our governors and federal representatives. >> we are treated as children as very young, they are going to understand one day and being told that constantly is ridiculous. we are able to vote and stop trying to use us as a photo op, you know? like listen to us and actually sit down and have a conversation and not try and steer us into a certain way of thinking. >> i would simply say get ready for change. like we are going to change things. like we are going to make change happen. we are going to further the progression of american history. we are going to keep progressing. we are going to keep expanding. that's what's going to happen and get ready for it. [ applause ] >> the country's young people are start, they want to be heard. they are also leading some of the most important issues around the world. when we come back, you are going to hear from three young activists. what is the message to us grown folks? that is going to be the message when we get back.
the young activists say they are very, very serious about fighting this climate crisis. they are organizing massive strikes. they are suing governments, they are creating policy. they are demanding that leaders pay attention. yesterday students from around the world were out protesting as a part of greta thunberg's
friday's for the future movement. and you are going to have activists getting together for the united nations global summit. please welcome jamie margolan. we have rebecca freitag who is the u.n. youth delegate. and also cynthia leon. she is a climate activist right here in new york. give them a big round of applause. [ applause ] look, you got all these pictures of marches happening all around the world. are you more encouraged or more discouraged? >> well, right now it's a combination of both. i am feeling more encouraged because as someone who's been fighting for climate justice for about four years now, i've kind of seen the tipping point. we're reaching the tipping point because more and more young people are out of the streets and more and more people are organizing and the public pressure is building so that these corporations and governments are now realizing that they can't go on much
longer destroying a life on earth and they can't go on much longer choosing corporate money over young people's lives. >> now you are coming from overseas. what is it like coming from germany to the united states where people may have not even have realized that climate change is real. what is that like? >> especially the amounts of plastic that you find here, it's like sometimes it's more developing than in other developing countries. >> you are one of the frontline activists right here in new york city. do you find that this movement that is building toward climate justice, is it inclusive enough? what's your view of this movement as it's growing? >> so, what i see, i definitely think that there needs to be more people of color in the movement, especially since being an asian-american in white america, i understand that we need more young people, but i feel like we also need to specify young people of color too because although i do see
that there are a lot of young people, i don't see young people of color in the movement. in a way this movement is a political revolution. and another thing is that we need to educate people on knowing who you're voting for and actually understanding the policies for climate that the candidates are talking about. >> absolutely. and, you know, and jamie you've been doing that for quite some time. you had to stand up to some republicans face-to-face. talk a little bit about that experience. >> so i testified before congress alongside greta thunberg and another young activist. i made my case about, you know, the emotional toll that the climate crisis takes on me and my peers. and i also talk to them about the science. i talked to them about how the climate crisis southbound just this issue that popped up like a daisy. it's the culmination of root systems of oppression that have been building up for centuries. how we have to get to the roots
of that and also address our consumeristic ways. and a lot of the republicans are very mad about that, and this one guy waved around this paper. but he was like i'm not going to take action because china isn't taking action. so why do we have to do anything if china isn't doing that. and then i'm like excuse me, how are you going to look your kid in the eye and say, sorry, i realize that your planet is unlivable now and that you're going to go through so many horrible floods and danger, but other countries weren't doing it so i don't really feel like it. >> what do you want him to do, and what do you want him to hear? >> i want him to understand first of all that the first step to getting out of a hole is to stop digging. we need to be completely transformed off of fossil fuels to renewable energies. the reneed to be rapidly transforming in a way that is just. the climate crisis is a chance to be able to correct the wrongs in our history our society. because it comes out of colonialism. if we really solve this right, then we can actually solve most
other issues that plague us. we can really address, you know, the racism in this country. we can address poverty and health care and all these other issues through solving the climate crisis with something like a green new deal that addresses all fields. [ applause ] >> you can give a round of applause. you want a comprehensive solution. what about you? you have leaders around the world that are getting pushed by your generation. what do you want them to say and what do you want them to hear from you? >> well, first of all i want to remind them on their responsibility, the leaders of today actually they are supposed to govern according to the majtd, right? like, to the will of the many and not to the will of some profit-seeking individuals. and this is the will of the many. it's not only us young people. i guess it's also so many other people of society who really want to see climate act now. we have the solutions. and now we don't want to hear any more barring speeches or excuses or distractions like responsibilities on the
individual. no. we need disruptive measures and we need them now. >> the fact that you are willing to speak up for the people who are getting hit first and worst means so much. give her a round of applause. give these young ladies a round of applause. [ applause ] now, coming up, it is the hug scene around the world. you are going to meet the boys who are warming our hearts all over the country. they give me so much hope. they are going to be right here when we come back. [ applause ] ♪ ♪ award winning interface. ♪ ♪ award winning design. ♪ ♪ award winning engine. ♪ ♪ the volvo xc90. our most awarded luxury suv. ♪ ♪
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closed captioning brought to you by mesobook.com. [ applause ] all right. so usually we are so caught up talking about partisan politics and violence and division, devastation. not now. luckily we've got two little boys from new york who recently reminded the entire country what love and friendship is all about. watch this. so beautiful. now those are 2-year-old finnegan and maxwell. they are best friends. and they could not contain their excitement to see each other. both boys and their dads are here. i can barely contain my excitement to see them. welcome to "the van jones show." maxwell and finnegan and their
dads michael and dan. [ applause ] hey, little guys. come on up here. little peoples. hey, look. [ laughter ] rejoice, yeah, we got some toys for you if you want to. give a round of applause to these people. hello, little person. how are you? do you want to talk about the tariffs? [ laughter ] listen. these guys are best friends. is that correct? >> yes. >> tell us a little bit about how they became such good friends. >> so, we have a favorite restaurant in our neighborhood. we both live about a block away from it. and we were finishing up our brunch, my wife and i with finnegan and they came in and asked to sit at the other end of the big table. so we just got talking because we had kids. then our favorite servers knew them and they knew us.
so before we left we got their phone number and we hung out definitely later that week. we went up to their country house. >> what are you saying? is that a helicopter? [ laughter ] >> can you say hello? >> hi. >> a fire truck. >> you're freezing? [ laughter ] >> look at that. he said finnegan. so let me ask a simple question. do they know that they are famous? [ laughter ] >> i don't think so. we were at the airport and the tsa agent recognized them and it's just been very odd walking around with a toddler that's famous. it's weird that they get spotted on the street and people ask for photos and you're just like wow. >> why do you think they have struck such a deep cord in this country right now? >> i don't know. i just think with the climate of the country and the world really with all the hatred and racism and, you know, just the anger
that's going on between everybody and just to see maybe a little hope for the future, a little inspiration, you know, this is how it should be. and it's not, which is sad. >> i have definitely said to some people that it's kind of a shame it went viral. i love that millions of people love both of our boys, and i love sharing that and, you know, it seems to have made a lot of people happy. but this should just be normal. two beautiful kids who like each other, they play. >> and they were just being themselves. like they hug all the time. it wasn't anything -- you know, they hold hands walking down the street and they dance together. they get in trouble together. [ laughter ] >> you're a teacher? >> i'm a teacher. >> what did your high school students say when they all happened and this suddenly became one of the biggest videos in the world? >> they said, oh, my god, that's your son, i seen him. then we had a really good conversation about it. i work at a school -- that is
finnegan. >>. [ laughter ] i work at a school that's themed around the idea of social justice. and i think most of my students if not all would identify themselves as students of color. and so we had a really good conversation on that tuesday that it really went viral about why did it go viral. they said, well, because it's two kids hugging. i said is it? is that why it went viral? and we talked about it a little more. they said because it's a black boy and a white boy hugging. >> why is that such a big deal, yeah. but it really, really is. >> from a parenting point, how important is it to go out of your way to find kids from different backgrounds and that type of stuff. is that something that's a value of yours, just happened to be that way? >> it just happened to be that way. it wasn't like -- i mean not for us anyway. we met at a restaurant called lakayla. we just -- like we bonded pretty much -- it's hard to find parents that have the similar likes that you do with kids that are the same age.
so, you know, honestly they didn't know -- >> did it go too far? [ laughter ] >> whoa, maxwell. >> that's awesome. >> what message do you have right now you've got the spotlight on you of people watching all around the world, all around the country. what message do you have as a dad for people in these times? >> just to show love to one another. just to be nice. i mean, we didn't try to get our boys to do that. we didn't try to -- it wasn't about race or any other thing. >> it was just that we like them. they're our friends and they are friends, and that's really it. and that's really all it should be about. >> i mean, it shouldn't matter anything sexual orientation, color, religion. just it just shouldn't matter. hatred is taught. >> give a round of applause to these beautiful, beautiful kids. [ applause ] i can't tell you how much i
appreciate you having them here. and to yourself as well. now, listen before we go, i do want to acknowledge the passing of a dear friend of mine alyssa swidler. she also worked to bring people together. unbelievable human being. may her memory be a blessing. i want to thank everyone for watching. i'm van jones. peace and love to one another. [ cheers and applause ] ♪ ♪ e for america. that's why the nfl chose verizon. because they need the massive capacity of 5g with ultra wideband, so more screaming, streaming, posting fans... can experience 5g all at once. this is happening in 13 stadiums all across the country. now if verizon 5g can do this for the nfl... imagine what it can do for you.
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this is cnn, the most trusted name in news. ♪ this is cnn break news. >> good evening. i'm alex in for ana cabrera. thanks so much for joining us. we are beginning tonight with breaking news and a brand-new snapshot of the democratic race for president in iowa. a neck-and-neck race at the very top. and we are going to be revealing those results from the cnn des moines registered poll. this is why it matters. the history. hillary clinton, al gore in the last four presidential elections when no democratic incumbent was running, the winner of the iowa democratic caucuses went on to be the