tv C-SPAN Weekend CSPAN January 23, 2010 2:00pm-6:14pm EST
dialogue going forward, part of the strategic dialogue, and it is an area where we really have differences. >> it is going to be part of your side of the dialogue, but do you have any indication -- how is the human rights dialogue with the chinese going, more broadly than just the internet? >> to my mind, is part of a strategic dialogue, part of a broader discussion we're having on a range of issues. >> it does not seem they are willing to talk about it. >> well, that is not true. we are in the midst of trying to figure out what the form will be for those discussions and the agenda. rights issues. there will be a morepjñ formal dialogue in the coming months, which we are committed to and they are committed to. . . ntsd
>> and we have a task force that is focused on technology it. we are working in the intra- agency process. we believe it is a priority to restore telecommunications to the island, not just so that people can communicate with each other and loved ones, but also be able to leverage the mobile platform to help people connect to services during the recovery. >> i have a general and specific question on china. in terms of carrying out what
the secretary talked about yesterday on internet freedom, there has been discussion about whether the u.s. would consider making internet freedom of the trade issue. some of the software that allows the chinese to do what they do is supplied by american companies. with the u.s. consider putting an export control on the technology? the second thing has to do with support for technology that allows people to get around firewalls. the state department said aside money to support these kinds of efforts. one that got a lot of attention is the initiative with falun gong. has not yet gotten state department funding. has any thought been given to that? >> let me answer the second question first. our bureau is in bald -- involved in some of the grant- making. there is no one-size-fits-all. this is a moment when lots of
different technologies, groups, and individuals are trying to break the firewall. there is not a silver bullet to solve that. we have encouraged the group commissioned and others to apply. we have a request for proposals that is out the closes today or tomorrow. we would welcome any group that has a piece of that. we view our ways like the venture firms in california that try a lot of different things. everything is not going to work. our approach is that you have to try different things in different countries. technology, framing, diplomacy are all pieces of this. we have to address this in a multifaceted way. that is what we're trying to do. everyone is welcome to apply. there is more money coming down the pike. >> i think the secretary laid out a great vision for what the state department is going to do.
we are also in an intra-agency process that includes the department of commerce and the white house. there is going to be a hold government approach to this, in addition to what we're doing specifically at the state department. >> on export controls, are you saying that because it is a usdr thing that you are not the right guy to answer? would you say that those things make sense? >> the secretary made it clear that we're elevating internet freedom as a matter of form policy. we will be taking immediate steps that the state department. we will be working with our partners in government to make sure we are aggressive in ensuring there is free internet. >> would you consider actively subverting the chinese firewall? >> i am not going to expand on that comment. his question was about the funding for groups trying to get
around a fire wall. you are finding that? -- you are finding that? >> let me answer that. we are working in about 40 countries right now with individuals and groups in a range of ways trying to have freedom of expression. in many of those countries, the government would rather not have a discussion of their own actions on human rights or a range of other subjects. it is our intention to continue to work with individuals and groups promoting free expression. the state department did that 35 years ago working with soviet dissidents who were fighting against the government that wanted to restrict their ability to speak, right, a symbol, and discuss the issues.
some governments will characterize that in the way you did. from our perspective, this is a question of of power in people in their own societies -- from our perspective, this is a question of empowering people in their own societies. i said that there are a range of countries in the world where governments have taken the view that they need to constrict, constrain access to the internet. they need to make it impossible for people to get information pertaining to this country's. they need to restrain the people in those countries who wish to express their views. our view is that the internet ought to be open and free. people ought to be able to express their views. there should be a civil society within those countries where they can raise issues of concern. >> let me expand on that by pointing out that we are
focusing on one aspect of internet freedom in the conversation at this point. the secretary yesterday laid out a broad swath of issues with in which she defined internet freedom. one thing that concerns us is countries where young women who are caught using the internet or social media are then subject to what people call honor beatings and honor killings. there are other aspects of this. we want to ensure it is not just men who can be part of the digital age. she pointed out issues of religious freedom and how that intersects into these issues. while china and issues of freedom of expression and
censorship are very topical today, we are looking at this very broadly. i think that speaks to the brett and depth of the issue. -- i think that speaks to the depth of the issue. >> $15 million was spent in fiscal year 2008. it is gone to these countries as circumvention technology. there is $5 million additional up for grant right now. you are expecting more. circumvention is a part of what you have been doing. how is that different from the $15 million the secretary referred to yesterday? is that a different pots of money and different from the $10 million you are relying on to continue these ventures? >> on our side in fiscal year 2008, there was a grant from congress of $15 million. some of that has been spent. some of that is in the pipeline. some is being developed. there is another $5 million for
fiscal year 2009 that was a request for proposals closing today or tomorrow. in fiscal 2010, there is another charge of money. that is a piece of it that i am involved in. i think the $15 million, there is a range of other programs in the government relating to some of the promotional things that alec worked on. our piece is really separate. it is not just circumvention. to me, it is not just one side to this. it is a lot about training people. it is a lot about -- it is some about technology. it is about encouraging groups that are in danger. it is a lot about diplomacy. getting out there and making sure that when groups are in trouble, we provide a lifeline. we have a range of thoughts and
approaches. we're working with a wide range of groups. it is not in their interest often to be identified. i want to speak in general terms. the reality is that these are activities that governments are not often thrilled about. >> can you quantify how much of that goes to circumvention technology? >> i do not know the answer. i can try to find out. >> can we get back to china and the google issue? we have heard the general language from the podium previously from the secretary about talking to them and having negotiations. can you tell us exactly what has happened? have there been discussions with the investor here? as our investor you are gone to the foreign ministry? can you give as the nuts and bolts on what level this has taken place customer >> not at this time. -- can you give us the nuts and bolts on what level this has
taken place out? >> not at this time. i will refer that. >> we've been talking to the chinese for many years. they say to to get off the table and talk about something else. that is what they have been telling us. the chinese now say that internet freedom is a concern. the chinese are saying they want freedom of the internet. freedom of the internet in china is where human rights is concerned. how much control do you have on the technology that china is provided by u.s. companies? most of the technology now comes from china. how much control could you have? >> i think it is important to view the human rights issue in china in the broadest frame. we have a long agenda.
it is an ongoing agenda. these are issues we continue to discuss and will continue to discuss. the internet and cell phone are a means of expressing those issues by chinese citizens within the country. they can gather information about the issues from the people in the country. it is a way for them to express themselves to the rest of the world. we support their efforts. we clearly do not have the control over how that happens. the chinese government is very involved in overseeing that. that is one of the challenges we face. it is an area where we disagree with the chinese government. our view is that there ought to be an open internet, it ought to be global in nature, and people ought to be able to express their views in the freest terms. this will be a continued diplomatic discussion. it is also partly the
responsibility of companies, individually and acting collectively, to figure out their roles. we need to be working with companies and also be clear that this is in the diplomatic and national interest of the united states to be promoting free internet in china and elsewhere. >> one of the things the secretary announced yesterday is that there will be high-level meetings here. >> are you planning anything at the united nations level? >> i would ask you to speak more directly to the chinese foreign ministry's written statement in response to secretary clinton's speech. they said that her insinuation that china restricts access or internet freedom runs contrary to the facts. they asked you not to make such promise accusations.
they also said flatly that it is harmful to china-u.s. relations. do you believe this has been harmful to u.s.-china relations? do you have any intention of tempering your criticism on this matter given the unhappiness of the chinese about it? >> the secretary said yesterday that there are a range of places where the u.s. and china have mutual interests. those will be discussed. we will continue to work with them. there are places where we disagree. we will put out a report at the end of the month, at the end of next month on human-rights issues. every year we put the report out. it makes a range of comments about chinese human rights violations. every year, the chinese government comes back. there are issues where we are going to disagree. we will continue to speak out strongly and clearly.
we will have those discussions. that is part of what countries do with one another. that is part of the dialogue. >> you do not think it has hurt the relationship? you disagree with the assessment by the foreign minister? >> it is an inevitable part of the conversation. we talk about things where we disagree. we try to find ways to reach consensus. >> what are the broad range of mutual interests? exactly what are those? you disagree on the internet, iran, tibet, taiwan, human rights. where are these areas of convergence with the chinese? if there's one beyond afghanistan, i would be very interested in knowing what it is. >> there's a range of economic relationships that are important. there is a range of strategic and security conversations that are important. these are two very big important
countries in the world. we talk about a wide range of things. there are some areas where we are working together. the strategic and economic dialogue is about trying to strengthen those parts of the relationship. part of it is also to be sure we're talking about things >> it is not about china. although china could be involved in it. someone pointed out to me that singling out the egyptian b logger who has been in prison is significant. he is apparently going to go back to egypt. the question in a person's mind was whether this was a way of signaling that the u.s. would treat dissident bloggers with the same kind of diplomatic status that they treat those of other kinds for purposes of bilateral talks.
was that also important in signalling a new way of treating this category of people? >> part of what we now know about the 21st century is that dissidents often manifest their dissent on global communication networks. bloggers are a form of 21st century dissidents. >> this is important to me personally. i was in egypt last week. i met with a number of loggers -- bloggers, including one who was arrested the next day. to me, it is important to be raising the cases of people who are challenging official actions by speaking out and to get arrested as a consequence. this is part of the nature of what we need to be doing. this happens to be a case that
occurred in the last few days. >> i would point out that the secretary referenced twice in her speech yesterday the small pamphlets that were passed out in the eastern bloc during the cold war. she specifically likened blogs and social networks to those. >> i wanted to ask you if you are planning anything at the united nations level with all this going on. >> one aspect we have not talked about it all is that there is the discussion affirmatively about opening up and making sure the internet is free. there is the second piece that is making sure that the internet is protected for privacy and is not used in ways that are
detrimental to security, etc., and does not promote crime. we're looking at aspects of that in the u.n. context. we were involved in geneva at the human rights council in september. we co-sponsored a resolution that made reference to the internet. we will continue to use the u.n. as a form to make sure that freedom of expression is reinforced. there's also server security. there are also questions of privacy. -- there is also cyber security. there are also questions of privacy. we need to find the right ways on a global scale to find the right groove in the road for dealing with the-and dangerous aspects of this. >> is the u.s. going to call on other nations to sign the convention, the one she is
referring to? will she call on more nations? who is going to be inflicting the consequences that she referred to? >> it is something we are looking at. i am not sure i can tell you what the next step is on that. it is something we're looking at closely. >> how many countries are signatories? >> thank you very much. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> according to the wind, the government of haiti as into the search and rescue phase of survivors of the earthquake. the u.s. navy is helping to evacuate people from port-au- prince.
[whirring] >> sunday, a discussion on the status of health care legislation in light of the massachusetts senate election with byron york and christopher hayes. there will also be a look at the 80 relief efforts. then we will talk about the future of guantanamo bay detainees. that is live at 7:00 a.m. eastern here on c-span. british prime minister gordon
brown talks about the government relief efforts in haiti and the creation of the united nations reconstruction agency to respond to future disasters. that is at 9:00 p.m. here on c- span. on wednesday, president obama gives his first state of the human -- union address to congress. the state of the union address will be on wednesday night. our coverage starts at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. you can also listen to the president's address live on your iphone with the c-span radio app. >> coming up, comments from and how to become a great leader. these are from the national leadership congress -- conference hosted by the national urban fellows.
>> welcome to the second day of this incredible conference. i want to thank everyone for being here to help us celebrate 40 years of a mission of developing the best and brightest, people of color and women to be dedicated, courageous, and accomplished leaders in change. i am so proud of what we have been doing. i hope you felt that yesterday was a fantastic day, as i did. it was just unbelievable. [applause] i have this movie script in my mind of hearing people speak yesterday.
then we ended with congressman james cliburn. what a day. i hope your inspiration and motivation will lead you to think of one thing that you can do to be the change agent, to be the person that helps to make our country stronger and better. that would be my dream, that yesterday inspired you to take one action that is in your control as a leader to make the world a better place. it was quite thrilling. i thank our 40 fellows and mentors, alumni, supporters, community leaders who have joined us, and of course the board of directors and a great staff. we're going to have a wonderful morning. could not think of a better way to start than a year -- and mayor -- than mayor cory booker.
to introduce some is someone who says she is off script. she is one of our great alliance -- alumns. [applause] >> good morning. i am the communications director of the city for mayor cory booker. i want to take time to explain why in my opinion he is one of the most fearless leaders that i know. [applause] i have had the fortune in my short life to work for some pretty amazing leaders. i worked for bart peterson in indianapolis. i work with mayor bloomberg in
new york city. now, i am in new work -- newark as the communications director. i had heard of this gentleman since 2002. there was a book that chronicled his first time to become mayor. he lost in that election. what was amazing was his heart and commitment to public service. in 2006 when he won reelection, i have been talking to his team. i sat down with him and said that this man, this leader is really amazing and i want to work for him. i want to work with them. -- i want to work with him. hopefully, you will hear today a little bit about his story. what is most amazing is that
often in the cynical world, sometimes people do not trust their leaders, public officials. they distrust government. with his leadership, commitment, and passion, he has redefined how the city of newark engages with its constituency and how it is defined inside and outside the city. i am honored to work with him to let people know that the city of newark will be the epitome of transformation. we have already made tremendous strides with his leadership. in 2008, we lead the country in violent crime reduction. the city of newark did that. we're continuing to progress and a number of areas, like increasing affordable housing, creating hundreds of resources
that have never been in the city before. there is a $40 million park expansion project that is amazing. there is crime stoppers and gun stoppers and other initiatives that have never been in the city before. i am honored to bring to you someone who has been a personal mentor to me and to challenges me all the time -- [laughter] in a great way, to strive and be the change i want to be. mayor cory booker. [no audio] [applause] [applause] >> thank you, everybody. thank you. [applause] sit down. you are wasting time here. [laughter] i cannot believe this. we have short time.
i want to get to questions from you. i want to speak quickly. i am excited that c-span is here so that insomniacs like me who were up at 4:00 a.m. in the morning will now have something that will really put them to sleep. [laughter] it is an honor to be here with people who probably have as much to offer me in terms of your wisdom, ideals, and passion as i have to offer you. i would like to talk about one central theme this morning that is important to me and that i need to be reminded of as much as possible. we can then open it up and have conversations. maybe the best way to exhibit this team is starting with the story that happened to me when i was a teenager. i was a freshman in college flying to california where i was going to school at stanford. i went through the -- i know the trip through newark airport. well now. at that time, i was a football
player. i was very solid, about 240. it is a blessing when you are that big and you are sitting in coach to have seats open next year. this was an airplane that was packed. mike two seats are open. i started to have this conversation with god. -- my two seats were open. i started to have a conversation with god asking him to leave them open. the door closed. i started to stretch out and spread out. all the sudden, the door to the plane swung open. i heard this bloodcurdling baby yelling. i see this woman, on the
airplane was a toddler in one hand and a woofer and tweeter in the other. and i looked around. she obviously could not be sitting next to me. i realized there were no other seats open on the plane. she comes closer to me. my conversation with god started to change. what have i done to deserve this date? she comes with three bodies in two seats and sits down. i thought this would either be the worst light of my life or the best flight of my life. it would challenge my creativity. they sat down. the woman was embarrassed. i started talking to her to get her to relax. the baby would not stop crying. we eventually took off. i started working and having fun playing with the boy, using all
of my bad jokes like the one about tigger and eyeore looking in the toilet for pooh. i used every joke by had for a four-year old to try to get through the flight. we ended up having a ball. the movie, "laurie" came on. -- the movie, "glory"came on. i told her she had to watch the movie while i played with the kids. i forgot about it and went along with my life. five years later, i graduated from stanford. another five years past. i was coming out of law school. another five years past. i was in a tough race for mayor of the city of newark.
it was difficult. we were having the hardest time raising money. we had a lot of volunteers but it was hard to build the campaign organization. on one of my lowest days during one of the most difficult times, i got a letter in the mail from this woman. she said that we met 15 years ago on an airplane flight from newark to sentences go. she said some very kind things. she said that was the first time she flew with her kids and how my kindness stayed with her. she said they owned a factory and would like to contribute money. as a politician, that is pretty darn good. [laughter] she said her son was older and would love to volunteer with the campaign. he became one of the best campaign volunteers. she had me toward the factory and meet the workers. it turned out to be this amazing
experience, this wonderful lesson of the universe that what you put out of money comes back to you. the universe is a balanced place. i find that the challenge is to remind myself of that on a daily basis. life is not about the big battle. it is not about a huge election victory or the moment when you are standing before the crowd and chanting inspiration. life is really about courage. courage does not come when you face a fearsome foe. courage is every single day, getting up out of bed, going to work, doing a little more than is required and expected of you, and every single day showing packs of decency, kindness, and love. every moment affords us this powerful choice to accept conditions as they are or to take personal responsibility for changing them. that is life. it is about little moments, the
little things. my football coach used to say that life is not about when the freddie mac lights are on you -- when the friday night lights are on you at kickoff. life is about what happens before the sun comes up before the season starts. it is about what you do when nobody is watching. it is about how hard you are willing to sacrifice and struggle when others are sleeping, resting, or stop. we have come to a point in our country that frustrates me. so many people are willing to indulge in this belief that our democracy is a spectator sport, that people can sit on their couch it home in a state of sedentary agitation and give a wonderful color commentary about what is happening in the world and talk about what should be done or give wonderful critiques
of the actors in the game. really, life is about getting out there and being a part of it. democracy is a full contact in denver. it is not -- democracy is a full contact effort. it is not about what you see on tv. i talk about the people that inspire me and challenge me to be better. they are not the names we read about in newspapers. they're people who do amazing things by taking simple acts and building a lifetime of love. one of the men i talked about in my state of the city address is the guy by fictionally called "the lawn mower man." he is a government worker. here is a retired government worker living on elizabeth avenue.
he said he was looking outside his window and there was an abandoned lot next to the high- rise building that was overgrown with weeds. there were drug dealers on a lot causing problems. one day, he gets this amazing gift from the federal government that there is a lot of controversy about. it was a stimulus check. instead of engaging in debate or discussion, he looked at the check and decided to buy a lot more -- to buy a lawn mower. he goes out to the lot and start to mow it. his neighbors were afraid for his life because he inadvertently backed up -- bagged up some of the drug dealers stash.
he did not stop. day after day, he was maintaining this lot. eventually, the drug dealers decided this was not a hospitable place for them to deal drugs. simply by mowing the lawn, he got the drug dealers off. he became a hero in his neighborhood. he is a humble man and did not stop. my staff discovered him because across from the abandoned what is a big part in newark -- big park newark. he noticed the median on the street was not being maintained. he started knowing that. that is when we discover him. we asked if he was a county worker or a city worker. he said no. we asked what he was doing. he said he lived across the street and looked outside every day. he said the st. belonged to him
as much as anyone else. taking responsibility. we drive by, walk by people and things every day that should be touched in some way by buus. if you see someone without a smile, and give them one of years. simple acts of kindness. if we see no angels, it is because we harbor none. do we have an angelic part -- heart? do we maintain that under stress? it can transform everything we see into opportunities, possibilities, into gifts to us to manifest the essence of our being. i note from walking -- watching other courageous individuals
that when people with that kind of life, when they live with that degree of integrity, when they realize life is really about the small things. it is about how you treat the people you work with and the people who come into your life by affirming their dignity and humanity. the people who live that kind of life have a powerful way to bring people together, to inspire in each of us the same kind of behavior and love. when that happens, that is one real revolutions take place. when sincere parts of authenticity -- hearts of authenticity come together, it is transformed. i am far from perfect. i have days when i indulge in negativity. there are days when i come home and turn on colbert or john
stewart hoping they will make me laugh after a long day. i have to say that the ability to make me hope and not lose faith is the idea that when did people come together, transformative things happen. one of the worst times in my life was when i was a young public official. i had just won the city council speeat. -- i had just won the city council seat. i was the youngest person ever elected in my city. i had political reality meet my optimism. the council people have been there for a long time and were not interested in what i had to say. [laughter] it took five votes to get anything done. i was good at setting records of being outvoted 8 to 1.
i just did not feel like i was getting anything done. i had one of the most sophisticated politicians in america there at that time. he knew i would be a political problem for them. he started making my life interesting. he was tickineting my car wherever i part. the attorney general investigated why the city police were tapping my office phones. it was a really frustrating time. i began to question why i got involved with government, why i even did this. i was doing a good job as a young attorney. i was thinking government was not the answer. this was a waste of my time. i was coming home that night. i was living in high-rise housing. the tenant president as i was walking home greeted me.
she asked me what was wrong. i told her i did not have time, i just wanted to go home. she told me not to walk past year and to come give her a hug -- she told me not to walk past her and to give her a hug. [laughter] these are the times when you want to go home and go to bed. here i was hugging this woman. she asked me what was wrong. i was angry. i have vented on her a year of frustration. she is a woman of dignity. she is small but she is a figure you can look up to. she looked at me with her stern face as i asked why i got involved in politics. i started talking about the frustrations of not getting things past in getting things done. i told about the frustration of the day. i had gotten a call from someone who helped me to get elected. she called me up angry that day.
this is what set me off. she said there was an incident in the project. she asked me to get the more police protection. my response to her was i could not stop the police from taking my car and how would i get them to help her? before i knew it, i was yelling at her. i told this woman about it. she suddenly looked almost compassion. that was really not mrs. jones' way. she was a little sympathetic to my problem. she told me she knew what i should do. she repeated. "i know what you should do." "i know exactly what you should do." [laughter] i told mrs. jones i really did not have time for it, to just tell me what to do. it was almost like she was getting divine guidance from god. she looked at me and took a deep breath and said, "you should do
something." [laughter] i was like, "that's it?" she said to do something. i was furious. i walked in the lobby of my building. the elevator was the smartest elevator in america. if it knew you were in a good mood, it let you ride up. if you were in a bad mood or carrying groceries, it would not work. [laughter] i climbed up 16 flights of stairs. i got into my apartment and sat down. i am a strange guy because i really am a person of faith. i grew up in a small church in
new jersey. i am a member of great about this church. i love god. -- i am a member of great baptists church. i have gone to india to study hinduism jury in there is very little in my office. right now, there's a statue of. tubman rigid right now, there's a statue of carry it -- right now, there is a statue of harriett tubman and other religious things. i sat on the couch. the bible was there. i opened it up. the was also a package. most people have heard about if you have faith in god, it is a mustard seed. you can say, "moved."
you get the sunday school started a. most people do not know the next passage says that you have to fast and pray. i called someone up and said we needed a tent. we built this tent. i went to mrs. sewell, the manager. i said i was sorry that i had this respected her on the telephone. i said i did not know what we were going to do to solve the problem but -- [laughter] i said would stay here, sleeker, camp out here. -- i said that i would stay here, sleeker, camp out here. i asked her to do me a favor and pray with me every morning. i said i was not leaving until we found a solution. she hugged me.
we held a press conference. i challenged people. i said there were communities were people worry about your safety every day. this is not the land of the free in the home of the brave. this is not an accurate reflection of our nation. we have the power to do something about it. i challenged the media to interview the people that lived there, hear their moment of truth, and put it on camera. they did it. i went to bed that night. i woke up to a bunch of men surrounding me. these guys were big. they said they were correctional officers at a local facility and that they saw me on the news. they said they would not let me stand up there alone. they stood out there with me. there was an amazing group of people became -- who came out to be with me in the tent.
pastor reddy said that since i was fasting and praying, he was in. he was sitting there and bring with me in the morning. we had people coming from all over the city. one man brought his police officers from another town. hospitals came out with health screenings. i am still very close to people from fedex because they brought job fairs and hired people. before you, things were going on. people were being hired. there were concert. -- there were concerts. some wall street guy sent 500 or 600 piecezzas to feed everyone. that kind of bothered me because i was on a fast. [laughter] at the end of it, the mayor came
out. i had been praying and fasting for 10 days. we were adversaries at this point. there's something about humbling yourself before forces larger than you, be it the community forces or god. it puts you in a different state of mind. i think he had prepared remarks and was about to have a press conference. the first thing i did was cut him -- hug him. he hugged me back. they published the picture. he said they would find a solution to rid the owners of the building promised security upgrades. -- he said they would find a solution. the owners of the building promised security upgrades. the point i want to make is it is not about the big moment. the biggest moments are
inspired. and that a teacher from the charter school on the airplane last night. -- i met a teacher from a charter school on the airplane last night. she asked me to help with some things. the mayor never build a park. we just cut the ribbon on a new park and day care center. [applause] that is not the point of the story. we're still struggling in newark. we've had some amazing success. we have had a 50% reduction in gun violence there have been other things we have been able to accomplish. the real point of the story was the changing moment in my life as a public servant in the city of newark. it was a moment that changed my
life. after years of feeling like a failure, -- after a year of feeling like a failure, i was standing on the pavement for a final prayer. i had been fasting for 10 days. i may have been hallucinating or reading things into the moment that were not there. but as people came together and join hands for the final prayer, there must have been 200 people holding hands. i felt when we join hands a power coursing through my body. i felt like if i look to the mountain and told it to move, it would move. i allowed them and the energy of the moment to fill me up. there were black folks, latino folks, white folks, christians, jewish folks, non-believers,
imams, priests. people started praying. i heard it prayer in different languages. it kept lifting me higher and higher. in the midst of all, i suddenly began to hear the words of our common ancestor. i heard the words of the great east african saying something. i heard the words of an east india been saying that sticks bundled together cannot be broken. i heard the words of a rabbi who said that jews together are invincible. i heard the words of a man jailed in 1963. there is an inescapable network
of mutuality were words he wrote in a letter. i heard the simple words of islam that mean we all share a common soul and spirit. perhaps the most touching words i felt in a way i had never felt before with the three simple latin utterances that are the hallmark of a young nation yearning to be free, true, and real. e pluribus unum. the tent came down. i went on with my career. i had big battles. i really believe now that life is not about those larger moments. life is ultimately about the continuing. ask mother teresa about how she defines success. she said that god did not call her to be successful.
he called her to be faithful. this is the story of america. it is not about the battles that are one. -- it is not about the battles that are won. it is about the people who stood up even though they never saw freedom themselves. it is about the people in sweatshops' who tried to organize unions that were beat down. many of them were killed. their families still got the next day and kept on pushing and trying. we cannot let the finite disappointment undermined our hope. we are americans. our nation was born in a way that no other country was. it is the first country that was not about a common linnaean -- lineage, people looking the same, or kings or queens. with a first country formed around a set of values articulated by imperfect men and
women. it is ordinary people doing extraordinary things trying to make real the promise of democracy. that is what we are. we're ultimately democracy's agents. we confuse the world with our love, our highest ideals. it is not through speeches and public appearances. it is with our daily acts that can reflect the truth of our building. we will ultimately enable ourselves to achieve the nation of which we dream. we will ultimately not just look into the promised land. we will get there. we will get there together. thank you. [applause]
>> i am going to ask a few questions. i will also manage it. would you like to go first? >> thank you for the very inspiring top. i went to new york law school. i went to school in newark. i really loved it. when i told people i was living in newark, they talk about how dangerous it was and asked why i was going to school there. what can we do about changing the image of newark in new york and all over the country? >> that is the biggest challenge for newark, the impression does not meet reality.
i do not mean to this respect other cities. newark but is safer than little rock or washington. we're challenging the reputation of problem. -- we are challenging a reputational problem. we took on conan o'brien. it is such an easy joke for late-night television hosts to make. they look for a city to use as a punch line and they use newark. i love when they have big shows where people are coming to newark the overwhelming majority of people come are coming from outside the state of new jersey.
we really have jumped into social media as opportunity with facebook and other things to show people the inspiring stories, as i have told you in this speech, but also urban america and we need to change the image of cities in america to let people know the truth of who we are. that is what we are born to continue to try to do. -- what we are going to to continue to try to do. >> my name is carolyn and i am from albany, new york. >> that is my mother's name >> [inaudible] [laughter] >> you had a 46% downturn in gun violence. we have established a gun violence task force, but we cannot seem to find the answer. >> i have talked about it in a
speech already, but i will be more specific about it. we have been able to achieve 46% reduction in gun violence. it used to be the stolen car capital of the world and we're down 4% on cars as well. two things, back to the daily discipline of your ideals, your values and your love. we had to do two things. one was, run the police and armed with a much higher level of discipline. those of us that are in the public sector, be it nonprofit or government, government does not often select for count -- accountability. whether it is schools or whatever, accountability is a difficult thing to infuse into public institutions. market accountability is easy. but ribordy knows what the bottom line is at the end of the week. government accountability is difficult because to me, it means three things. it is having clear standards of what you want to achieve. having sophisticated measures for getting there. and the most important one is
having consequences for failure. the problem often for me as a politician is we can stand up in four years and nobody is measuring us by saying, this is what your crime statistics are. it is often much more subjective than that. we said, let's try to run our police department with a lot more rigid in terms of accountability. we started saying we were going to break up the business analytics. the leader i have at the police department have is a genius at this. we started measuring the ridiculous things that were jumping off the page that we were never held to account for. for example, we have police departments that looks like, in my opinion, scenes from barney miller. guys were working on typewriters that belonged in the smithsonian. we were not paying attention to where the rest of the world was in terms of technology. we had to start figuring out ways of setting standards for us in technology. another example is just doing analysis of the personnel. we have policed behind desks
that should not have been behind desks. we got hundreds of more officers on the streets of by analyzing that. we looked at when crime happens, studying crime patterns. you call us geniuses and it is so obvious that most of you could say, we could have a drought with that. we did an analysis that said over 60% of our officers during the daytime shift and there are four-two night time to shift -- and there are two nighttime ships. most crime happens when? at night. we are geniuses in new work. we shifted our personnel towards nighttime. let's be clear with ourselves, i am the grandson of a union organizer for united autoworkers. but unions often do not necessarily a line with the noble aspirations of institutions, be they schools or even government. we found out that according to
the union contract, we had detectives in our task force for gangs working 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. i do not know about your city, but gains do not work in my city 9:00 a.m. to [laughter] 5:00 p.m.] we started -- 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. [laughter] we saw that most people committing the violence in our city were people coming home from prison. ñithey have long criminal histories. what are we doing to help people coming home from prison? if we analyze the people coming home from prison, we could actually find statistical data that had the highest proclivity for gun violence. we started reading all kinds of programs to help men and women coming home from prison. i am a very tough data and analyzing individual because i do not want adverse activity for progress. we sort of looking at all kinds of problems, looking at examples in other cities about what people wereçó doing good to come up with unique, never be born -- never before done in america things.
most of the guys love their job. they really do. in the land of the free, we love walking falk up. [laughter] and when they -- we love blocking fullback u-- locking . [laughter] we started pulling back on some of the obstacles where we said, what can we do right now? what is something we can come up with right now to make a difference in their lives? recent analyzing data that the number one reason why guys recidivate is technical parole violations. it is hard to get your driver's license. it is hard to deal with warrants. you were in jail, but you had a ticket you had to pay that became a ward for your arrest because you failed to show up in court. guys have been coming out and not realizing it and been sent back to prison. we realize there were administrative law problems.
the second thing i want to get to is discipline, data analysis and accountability, but the second thing is bringing people together. i brought all of the law firms together that would listen to me and i said, you all can make my city save, lawyers. i do not want you out there trying to lock up bad guys. i do not want you chasing after bank robbers, but what you do triboro bonnell, we could do the first -- through pro bono, we could do the first-ever pro bono services for x offenders coming out of prison. they agreed, most because i used a lot of leverage on them and they did not get it at first. now they get it. the economic potential of a man coming out of prison, by just helping him solve some warrant, get a driver's license, expunge a record, amazing things happen. we had almost 1000 clients with a transformative impact. one of the first reactions i got, this was credential, god bless them. we had a meeting and -- this was
prudential, god bless them. we had a meeting and it was the first time we sat down to have a conversation. i said, look, we're going to set the national standard for urban transportation in three areas. the first one is public safety. you all need to focus your grant giving in new ways. if your health foundation, a kids foundation, don't you know when people get shot it affects your mission and your mission, whatever it is. and we had philanthropy created in new ways. newark, new jersey has one of the largest wireless networks hosting safety technology. we have gunshop detection, cameras all paid for by private dollars. and we have been catching people. we started a tip line, one of the most lucrative in the nation. if i think someone is packing heat in this room -- [laughter] if i think someone has a gun in his room and we were in newark, new jersey, you could call the anonymous tip line and tell me the information.
we do not need to read and get a conviction. we just want to get the rest and get the gun. that is all i want. then you call back and get the second set of digits and get $1,000, no questions asked. in this economy, a lot of folks are calling. [laughter] one last example and then i will go to another question. in september, i was still upset because my fourth quarter crime stats were still too high. we were killing it -- bad metaphor. [laughter] we were doing a great job in the first part of the year, but for some reason towards the end of the year we were seeing a spike. i was want to be creative. always that theme of trying to manifest the change you want to see in the world. if my staff was worrying about their mayor because i was out at 4:00 a.m. on the most dangerous streets, pulling over police cars, frankly, and often sang to them and tell my police director begged me to stop -- it gives me great joy as a young man to pull over a police car for once.
but just trying to talk to our crops, we are stopping crime before it happens. our job is no longer just to react. i tried to run around at crazy hours and get engaged in that way as mayor. but i finally said, let me ask the residents. i know my history. i know we brought segregation to its knees, not by charismatic leaders, but by a bunch of folks in birmingham, taxi drivers, domestics, who came together to set up this amazing system to shuttle people back and forth and stop using buses. i can give countless examples, going back to the revolutionary war where ordinary americans were able to patrol and keep their streets safe. i said, let's great night patrols in the work. let's bring together a whole bunch of people and invite them to sit in private cars. we actually rented them with the volunteer police officers and firefighters and drive through our most dangerous street at the
most dangerous times. we did that from september until the end of this year and we have virtually no incidences of gun violence during the most dangerous hours in the most dangerous places in our city because not of the mayor and of the police and what they were doing, but because residents did night patrols. you can see the video of it on you tube. it got so popular that we have well over 1000 residents from a woman in wheelchair that was coming out, taking buses to get there, to six and seven year- old. with christmas parties, hanukkah party. we would gather in a grudge and then go out. people as far away as california came to do night patrols with us. sarah silverman can out and did night patrols with us. it made a difference. i do not know what your strategy is that is going to work in your city, but the point is that we can always do more. as my residence should hold the account to, because we were
down to -- down 46%. but we had a 55-year-old woman killed by stray bullet this year. one shooting of an innocent citizen is way too much. daly disciplined analysis of the numbers, holding everyone to account within the organizations that you control. the second thing is bringing people together who are not used to working together, whether it is law firms, philanthropist, or whether it is community members. if you're willing to do the things other people will not do, you'll always get the results that other people do not get. it is as simple as that. other questions? would you like to recite a bible verse or two? [laughter] >> i grew up in paterson.
there are a lot of resources there as far as young people. going to school in paterson, i was 16 years old and i would spend my whole summer coming back and forth between the two cities, patterson and new work, -- newark. is there any resources to expand services for young people, keeping them engage outside of school or during the summertime that would help with those issues of young people ending up incarcerated because they are bored or whatever. is there any work around that right now? >> there is a lot of work around that right now. every city has a lot of energy around, and everyone knows the truth is that we would not need police officers if we took care of our kids. it is much easier to build young boys then it is to repair a broken man. that should be the real focus. often in america, unfortunately, we like to invest in the back end in prisons and police and
not in the front and in building the programs to serve our youth. we're very active in trying to find answers. one of my big ideas is going to be focused on those kids aged 10 to 21 that are at risk or facing challenges. disaffected youth, i think is the term that most folks are using these days. whatever -- whether it is alternative high schools that we have been able to start with philanthropist, whether it is visiting the juvenile lockup. i visited an amazing facility with amazing people who are trying to change the statistics. the last study that we had, 80% of the kids that were leaving were coming back within one year. that is crazy, 16-year-old, 15- year-old, for that to their lives. we decided we would start a
program for kids coming out of in stark -- incarceration called the yes program, used education employment system. when i was 13-year-old -- when i was 13 years old i was caught for drugs, violence, whatever and then the kid gets released and we think we do not have anything else to do. the castaneda get all of these programs that might be out there. in silly fashion, they have to leave the city to me with a probation officer that was in east orange new jersey and it would have to go to another school because the old one did not want them back. it created bureaucracy. we brought everyone together and other nonprofits to one location and bring the kids there so they can get an array of services. the ideas are out there. it is just setting clear values for the community. this is a great thing for leaders like yourselves. if you get a small group of people together to say, what is important to us?
we decide we will try to set the national standard in public safety, youth and family well- being, and economic empowerment. i am concerned about other issues and i will try to vote -- to do my best, but as mayor, those are my three values in reforming the government of iran. i know i am -- the government by iran. i know i'm answering questions too long, but i was asked recently to speak about the success we had in 2008. the very first story was simply this, i said to my what everyone in the room to close our eyes and at the count of three. north and do it slowly so you do not smack the next person aside their head. if we did this exercise right now and everybody open their eyes, there would be doing because for every person in this room there would be a different -- there would be giggling because every person would be pointing in a different direction. the more you can coordinate action and say, you are wonderful non-profit over their overt -- doing wonderful things,
but how can we better coordinate so that the mother who was working two jobs to make twice the minimum wage to meet the minimum of a family of three, or the grandmother -- because in america we see double-digit percentages of kids being raised by their grandparents. so that they are whaaware of the rest of services that are available to them and we can close the gaps between organizations. >> [inaudible] [applause] since i get to ask the last question, like to ask two. [laughter] the first question is, use of one of your missions is related to public safety.
unfortunately in america, we have a population of people who have been released from jail called sex offenders and are brought into our county. they literally have no place to live because no community wants them. we do not talk about that part of public relations. the first question is, what is new york doing to address that issue -- what is newark doing to address that issue? and the second question is, as the president pushes everyone to serve, what is newark doing to embrace that issue? >> that, to me, is one of the key issues in our city. we have thousands of people coming home every year and 60% to 65% go back to prison. which in itself is bad that we are paying $50,000 to incarcerate them, not to mention the cost of courts and police and so forth. people forget that in order to
go back to prison there committing crimes, which have powerful impact on the boards and committees and hearts of people. we set up an array of programs. we have been working at this for 3.5 years since i've been mayor. we're trying to set up a network of programs so people can easily plug in when they come home. our programs range from pro bono legal services that we provide, all the way to the father of a program that we have credit because we saw that the kids most likely to go to prison are the children of incarcerated adults. we went out and found a model in philadelphia that we like and have innovated upon it. it is one of my favorites in our city because it not only has an amazing rate of getting people reemployed, but it has the citizen rate to -- the recidivism -- the incarceration rate to 5%.
these men are not connecting to their families and mothers of their children. they often do not want to do that for some2rgasons and were not present in the lives of their kids. it is programs like this that gives me hope, but is about measuring. we decided we cannot just have disparate programs. we really have to come back to the initiative. we are setting this now and -- we have partnered, by the way. i very much reject in america this false divide called left, right, republican, democrat. it is sort of surge. it is debilitating to solve problems. on the local level, i do not have to worry about that stuff. we brought the manhattan institute together which is a right-wing think-tank, and we brought left-leaning folks together to create a coalition around this issue. everybody seemed to understand it, whether you want to do it from an economic analysis or immoral social analysis. -- or a moral social analysis.
one thing president bush did before he left was to give us a very large grants to study its effects. you can go online and fat -- published things on facebook and twitter. yesterday was a great day and i came back from a press conference. two greeted me, one guy who fought like hell to get the outgoing jersey gov. to pardon. thank god he did. and the other guy was angry with me because he had gone into our program and still had not found a job. the overall program has got about a 25% recidivism rate, which is belowñi the 64%, but every guy is not served and we have to continue to get better. the service issue is a hot issue in america thanks to our president and a lot of people in our media. this is the chance we have as americans to distinguish ourselves again on the globe. if we can find ways to effectively leverage the power
of good will. most americans actually want to see change happen. but they often do not know how xdto plug in. often when you plug in, the people who you are plugging into do not know how to do a few simple things that can sustain that volunteerism. recognizing volunteers is very important. anyone who volunteers wants to be appreciated. finding ways to effectively communicate the needs to the volunteers. we are studying the problem right now. one of the guys to get me my best political advice of my life is michael bloomberg. he said, cory, you should become a billionaire first and then mayor. [laughter] but god bless michael bloomberg and other philanthropists who have started the city of service campaign. we are now going to have a service officer on our staff that will be analyzing this problem. and a meeting in my office to talk about service yesterday because we want to create a
process online and offline where someone can go to a website and see that, ok, i want to volunteer for a day. ok, here is a place for you can pick up a paintbrush and paint, or you can go to an animal shelter and do this. or i can volunteer for a week. we want to create an easy online to create volunteerism. and then have offline components as well. we're thinking about having three days of service in our city that we are going to try to celebrate more. 9/11, martin luther king's birthday, as well as a back-to- school type event. we're working very strong because i have seen night patrols and it -- senior citizen police academies. if we can leverage the energy of folks, we can create transformation. that is the last thing i will say really on that. it we are the united states of america and we are not where we
are today because of the elected leadership. there have been phenomenal leadership's -- leaders in this world, but all change in our country has happened from the grass roots up. that is really where our paulick -- are power is. politicians often lose power because they cannot connect to what is happening on the street. i'm hoping that u.s. leaders do not forget that. if you can find ways to bring good people together, you can find transformative solutions by focusing on the important issues. i will end with this statement from a great woman -- i will paraphrase it. there was a great offer, alice walker, who wrote a great book, "in search of my mother's garden." she had a paragraph or she talked about black revolutionaries. she said, and i paraphrase, the real revolutionary is always concerned with the least glamorous of things, about educating a child and raising his reading level, about filling out food stamps for the elderly because they have to become a
revolution or not. it is about being close enough to your community to always be there for them when they need you. this is a true revolutionary seen in the most simplistic things. that is what i hope we can do as we move forward. thank you. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> i suspect everyone in this room will remember at least one major nugget. the do something is something i think you have taught us today. by bless you and your devotion to doing things right. thank you so much. [applause] i suspect someone is going to want to take a picture. if you do not mind, i'm going to let you step down.
>> ok, welcome back. we have a fantastic afternoon planned. in great part, because of your energy and your enthusiasm and your spirit to make a difference, to make the world a better place. i am delighted to be able to welcome of to the podium a fabulous mentor and alumni, stephen williams from the great city of houston. [applause] >> good afternoon. how are you all doing? great, great. i'm really grateful to have this opportunity to introduce our speaker, then jealous. because of my relationship both with the naacp's over the years in montgomery, phoenix, austin, and now in houston. and maybe more importantly because one of my staff people currently is the president of
the houston chapter of the naacp. i would like to keynote focuses on emerging trends and leadership style. of course, are speaker being who he is can talk about anything that he wants. then -- ben jealous is the president and ceo of the naacp, which is an organization that has had some impact on all of us. he is actually the youngest person to head this organization over its 100 year history. he has served as director of human rights and amnesty international and has been executive director of the national newspaper publicist's association. and he still rimmer's his colleagues, because he reminded me of someone he knew in phoenix. since being at the helm of the naacp, mr. jealous has focused on redefining the naacp. he is focusing on recreating the
power and impact of that organization, and he just told me that he had actually increased the revenue of that organization by about 30%, which we all know is a challenge in this day and age. [applause] i would like to introduce to you, mr. ben jealous, president and ceo of the naacp. [applause] >> thanks, steve, thanks to all of you for having me. it is a real honor to be here. i'm actually going to try to stick to the topic. [laughter] and i will be happy to take questions after. raise your hand if you were born after 1954 in this room. it is pretty much the entire
room. almost the entire room. i'm going to talk about this for a second. i'm going to talk about those of us who were born after the great civil-rights victories or as they were being one in the 1940's and 1950's and 1960's. these generations who were called at the time, the children of the dream. we were told frequently that our job was to read what others had some, that our job was to reap what others had some. the terminology's of organizers, which were told not to fight. we were told, all the great victories have been one. we killed jim crow, just like our grandparents killed his daddy. your job, young man, young
woman, is to go out and work hard, play hard, because the rules are now fair, and to prosper. and many of us did just that. and yet, we also came of age just-in-time to find ourselves the most murdered generation in the history of this country, and the most incarcerated generation on the face of the planet. the prison pipeline that we talk about is nothing new. it started in the late 1960's. is slipping into its third -- or rather, the third generation is looking into it. -- slipping into it. and we have to at this moment recognize the magnitude of the challenges that we face and commit ourselves to solving them not next year, not in a three- year grant cycle, but quite frankly, before we die. what happens when you are told not how to fight is people do not tell you how -- do not spend
enough time telling you how to win. it tell you that you won. italian life is hard and then it got better. raise your head -- they tell you life is hard and then it got better. raise your hand if you're grandparent will do things are better now. this notion that things keep getting better does not allow you to contextualize when it feels like things are getting worse. it does not empower you to know what to do. we have 1200 active units across the country. i'm speaking to one of them pretty much every week, or two or three or four. we have no need to talk black history unless we tell it as instruction. let us no longer tell it as monumental and over. let us tell it as a triumphant and ongoing. let us not tell it as something that just comes ever upward
toward progress, but rather, like so many towns with false plateaus and fake peaks and hidden valleys. at the same time, those of us who have been focused on diversity and breaking down barriers for people of color have to understand the catch of the century, which is that you will have no more mature -- majority or minorities. we will only have minorities in this country. well before the middle of this century, well before most of us retire. it has already happened in states like california. it has already happened for young people in this country. if you are working with things related to public schools, that is already a reality. what that means is that we have to really be intentional about the leadership that we exercise. about the goals that we set, about how we comport ourselves and build alliances.
i want to talk about five things i think are critical to how we respond to this moment. and how we create the future that we want for our grandchildren, if not -- even if it is too late for our children in some instances. the first is to understand the nature of the times. the second is to ask tough questions. the third is to set big goals -- and i will go through these one by one. the fourth is to be clear on the next step. i will talk about the importance of that. and if it is to be open. to be opened. the nature of these times -- by leading civil-rights organization. we have never been since the civil rights organization. we have always been a human rights organization. we are the representatives of a movement that is not 100 years old returned last year, but as hundreds of years old.
we are the inheritors of the abolitionist, and they themselves were the people most committed to making the people of this country live up to the words of its founding fathers, that all of us are created equal and endowed with certain inalienable rights, among those, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. but rather, this human rights movement won big victories in the 19th century, producing the 13th, 14th, 15th amendment, the civil-rights amendment to the constitution. it has been several decades, sort of like we spent the last year feeling like we won the victory and were waiting for everything to be put in place. it did not quite happen. so, we greeted the civil-rights movement to enforce the agreement of the previous century. we spent most of the last half of the last century seeking to achieve them. civil rights, as we know and --
are what the law already guarantees us. are what the constitution already guarantees us. our aspirations have always been bigger. at this moment, most of our aspirations are human-rights aspirations. what does that mean? their aspirations not currently contained in the law or the constitution. they are quality affordable health care for every person in this country. their aspirations for a good school and a good education for every child in this country. and frankly, for most adults in this country if we are really honest. their aspirations for universal child-care, universal pre-k. in other words, they are aspirations to extend and amend the existing social contract. it is important to understand the nature of the battle we are fighting because it dictates the tactics you must employ. if you are simply seeking to enforce a contract from a previous century or previous decade or last year, what you need are good lawyers. at the end of the day, what you need are good lawyers, and that is what charles hamilton houston
a's job he gave himself of training at the country of those to enforce -- training of a group to enforce has been pivotal in the last century. if, on the other hand, you are trying to amend, extend a little known draft of a social contract, union organizers, you need communicators, you need consensus builders, -- you need organizers, you need communicators, you need consensus builder. you need people willing to shake hands with anybody and everybody because your goal is not to win a battle in court. on a contract that has already been signed. your goal is to get ratification by 51% of a city council or the county board of soups or the state legislature or the congress. in some instances, we're talking about constitutional amendments.
every american believes that the american dream in titles their child to a good education, and yet, our constitution has no guarantee to an education, let alone to a quality education for our children. if we are wanting to achieve that, it would require super porosity. and that means that we must be bridge builders -- super pluralities. and that means we must be bridge builders. lawyers have limitations about what they can deliver for us by themselves in the courts. second, we have to ask tough questions. ok, we want to build a plurality. we have got to get to 51%, maybe two-thirds in some instances, maybe three-quarters depending on what we're trying to do. that means we will the people of every race, every gender, every class, both major parties, and some other ones all working together. and that means we have to look for self-interest, because that is the currency of politics.
we have to look for currency of self interest. and when you're fighting issues related to poverty, you're actually in good shape because you know what, most of the country is hurting. but that means that you have to then reconstruct their room. you cannot just take the old room with the old boat -- old doorways and expect large numbers of people to come true. you have got to create new doorways. you have to be willing to change the architecture of the room. if you have to think long and hard about what it means to be multigenerational, poor and white in this society. ask yourself, who fights for them? if you are a poor white protestant in eastern california, who fights for you in washington? i have been looking for them. there are groups on housing. thereñr are birds on little issues. but we cannot just sort of them in the circle of chiefs in the human rights committee and know who leads them. -- community and know who leads
them. that means, quite frankly, as we are doing -- if you want to come with me to prison some time, i will take you up to maine. maine state prison, 900 inmates total. it is nice to be a decrease in with less than 1000 inmates. 90 black inmates. that is also a bit startling. you have 200 members of the naacp. that was the scariest thing to the infrastructure in the prison. we have organized almost one- quarter of the prison. in the chapter were poor white people. if you go out to san jose or seattle or michigan, you will see a significant southeast asian leadership in the naacp. why is this possible? because we have never been a black organization. we have always been a very black organization. but we have never been simply a black organization. we are a human rights organization. we are here to eradicate racism. we have always known that while
we set our goals primarily around what is affecting the black community, we really benefit everybody. the other folks have figured that out along the way to. when i asked the inmates in name, why are you joining the naacp? they said, because you are the best backup that we have. i said, well, that is rational. we have to ask tough questions. we have to really engage, you know, really wrestle with the thing. what type of world are we trying to create? how will we get beyond these barriers of poverty? can we do that with, you know, on the assumption that wealthy white people are the best allies for people of color? if you come from a perspective of organizing and self interest, their self interest are typically divergent from the bulk of people of color who are poor. we have to wrestle with that and figure out where that leads us.
we have to set very big goals. the goals that, frankly, most people would think that you could not achieve peacbecause tt is how you change society. that is how the naacp has led this country for 100 years. if you look back in history, founded in 1909, a group of multiracial, multi gender, multiphase activists in a department in new york city who say, we're going to abolish lynch mob justice in this country corner to corner if you are from new york, you'll understand why yorkers think they can do stuff like that. [laughter] they're like nine of them in this small apartment. so, we did. it took us about 50 years. if we're honest, more like 60 years, to a bonnet -- abolish
the practice of lynching of justice, the notion that with a lynch mob impunity you could snatch men out of their beds and lynch them up and set them on fire. we have so many groups in this country, as well as mexican- americans, jews, a lot of folks that have been targeted by a lynch mob justice. and we look crazy when we started. we did it again and again. in 1918 we said, we're going to be separate the -- desegregate the u.s. military. most people thought all we could hope for was the humiliation and abuse of black soldiers on the fields of france. we said, no, we will integrate the whole thing. it took us many years. it took us to be in the middle of the battle to say we're born
to outlaw jim crow. we marched into court only able to count two votes in our favor and we came out with five. i put that out there because, so it was with the big victory that we saw in the breaking of the 233-year-old color barrier in the white house. a lot of folks ask, what was the naacp doing in the '80s, what was the india -- naacp doing in the '90s? and all the sudden, the president is black and a look back and say, how did this happen? and we run right into 50 years of voter registration drives and work on the census and the work on redistricting. and we encourage people to be the first black dog catcher and
the first black mayor. oh, this is what you have been up to. and we had a group of folks, vernon jordan who was our field secretary at the time and others, including a woman on our staff who has been there since 1953. we said, we will level the political playing field in this country and our political lifetime. we do not set big goals like that anymore. we are so on a three-year cycle. what are we trying to do? give me that grant. this is what i will deliver in three years. no, if your a foundation executive, if you are applying for a grant from a foundation, what you are focused on in the
next three years better be in the context of what you are trying to do over the next three decades. the next -- the most important thing when you set a goal is to know what your next step is. that is all we have to try to do, what do i have to get their -- what do i have to do and what is the next up to get there? if you do not know where to go, then that next step is to nowhere. and that is how it is, how the non-profit sector has forced over the last 40 years and how we can diversify public leadership in the last 40 years. and we have taken our country to be the world leader in incarceration at the same time. 5% of the world's people, we have 25% of the world prisoners. i have yet to find an american of any color, any political persuasion who really believes that their fellow countrymen and women are five times more evil than the average person on the planet.
we cannot just simply do what schwarzenegger is doing and try to privatize everything. we keep on filling up the prisons. we have to recognize the problem. tough on crime has latest down a suit -- a stupid road, has impoverished our schools. it is time to be smart on crime. public safety is a civil rights. but what that means -- the obligation of the sentence is that our criminal justice policies have to make us safer. in san francisco, 7% of the homicides go unsolved. -- 70% of the homicides go unsolved. the d.a. is pulling out her hair saying to the please, find the murderers and bring them to me. and in the meantime, stop bringing the paraphernalia bus. do you really have time to search someone's pocket for a joint when you have not solved seven out of 10 murders in this city? [applause]
i will close talking about the most important thing, which is when you are trying to build coalitions, when you are trying to amend and extend the social contract, when you are trying to transform this society that has -- and you have accepted the fact that you may not be able to make the big changes before your child graduates from high school, but committed that they will be done before your grandchild graduates from high school, when you recognize that you're going to need 51% and may be more, then you have got to be wide open. that can be scary sometimes. in the early 1990's i had been kicked out of college at columbia university organizing student protests. i had been recruited to jackson, mississippi, where the governor was trying to shut down two historically -- two public
historical black colleges. and make valley state in prison. it was like the present pipeline without the pipeline. take the school, make a prison. the sisters, you can leave. brothers, you can stay. that was pretty much the proposition, right? so, i got down there and i said to one of the lawyers in the case, what exactly are you expecting me to do? they said, you know those protests in new york city that you organized? i said, yes. just organize them here in jackson, mississippi. i did not realize how terrified i was to be in jackson, mississippi until he said those words. i knew the consequences would be a lot more dire than they were in new york city. i said, to who exactly? they said, put the fear of god in the governor and put the fear of god in the judge. we have lost faith in the judges to make the right decision
because they are divinely inspired. we tend to think that they make the right decision because they read the political tea leaves. and most recently, in our discovery we found a document that they engaged in 12 years of bad faith negotiations because they thought a riot with breakout. we want you to rekindle the concern. i went about doing my job. reorganized -- we organized street programs in the -- protest in jackson and we went to jail. as soon as the got out of jail, we started getting death threats. as soon as we give the police all our information, we started getting death threats. [laughter] so, we said, -- we are planning this big protest, 15,000 students at the governor's mansion and the state capitol. what would be the biggest margin jackson in at least a couple of decades.
and we do not want it to be an all black march, because it is about education. shutting down colleges is not a black problem. it is a mississippi problem. is about the welfare of the state. where can we fight -- find white allies in mississippi? [laughter] we said, earth day we know we can find some white liberals in mississippi on earth today. [laughter] we stand out to all historically white campuses. you cannot just have historically black schools. you have historically white schools. we stand out to all of the historically white campuses for earth day. by midnight, all the organizers had checked in. except for the organizers who had gone up to mississippi state. mississippi state is in stark bill. if anyone here is as much of a
johnny cash and as i am, you might recall that he has a song called the stark bill city jail. in other words, it is a place where even johnny cash is given a hard time. to get there, you have got to go all the way along the boards were cheney and others were pulled out as so many others before them as they were looking for civil rights workers bodies. past philadelphia where at the time the head of the shriners was the sheriff who had given the order, or made the call to the klan to have them killed. and then go for it -- 40 miles further into the piney woods. midnight came and went and i fell asleep at my desk and i got a call at the 1:30 a.m. from those organizers and they said if you need to get down here. we have a problem. i hopped in my car and we sit down and they say, sorry we are late. it will not let us speak until
the very end. we were there until 2:00. after the second encore of "sweet home alabama" they let us get up. at that point, the whole crowd had changed and the crowd was from. we got up and give our speech and they started chanting, "get a rope." and we got the heck out of dodge. while they are talking, there is an older white guy with feathered hair, with sunburnt face and a hawaiian shirt with ruffles on it, gold rings on every finger. in other words, he looked like a mid-70's used car dealer. [laughter] and he is staring at us, and he is staring at us hard. and we look around and we
realize we are the only black folks in this restaurant. it is a waffle house. if you have been to one recently, you can see that i have, waffle house is pretty much a class cut on the restaurant, but to believe there are black and white folks in there. he walks over to us with these two big bags, a lot of food, a lot of fat, the bags. these two big bags, and he looks at us and says, are you the boys that i have seen on television? and i'm from california and one is from chicago and another is from st. louis and the fourth is from new orleans. none of us are being accustomed to being called a boy by anyone except the one of our boys. we are in the waffle house at 1:30 a.m. and we say, yes, sir. he says, hold on for a second.
he turns around and all of us grew up shooting guns and we noticed that he is reihan domenick. we cannot see his right hand. mississippi is a right to carry state. $100 and you can buy a concealed weapons permit. he spins around and two of the guys are former football players and are ready to jump him. i put my hand up and less -- and i say, let's hear what he has to say. they say, we might be dead. he says, well, i just want to shake my -- shake your hand. because if i had been born in war, i would be mad as heck to. now stop fighting back 25 years ago. this was in 1993. he was referring to 1968. he said, i have no idea why. i own the used car lot. [laughter] you thought i was insulting him earlier. i was not. it was just his profession i own
the used car lot right down highway south of here. if you need anything, if you need a car or you need money, you just come talk to me. our mistake was that we thought we knew where our eyes were -- where our allies were. and we thought we knew who our enemies were. and we went looking for our allies and we found our enemies and we were about to defend ourselves from an imminent attack, which was really an open hand. so, i sent two of the organizers down the next morning to get that check. [laughter] i remember that wherever i go and what ever room i am in. i had an experience last year with a corporation that knew that when i was a foundation president i helped finance a lawsuit against them.
they came in and said, what kind of relationship do you want to have? i said, i want to work together to solve really big social problems. they said, ok, like what? i said, we have a crisis in this country that has been accelerating since september 11 where it is increasingly impossible for formally incorporated people to find a job. -- former elite incarcerated people to find a job. i want you to be their second chance at employment. i expect that before a national convention in not -- in july will be making an announcement that will be just that. now, as a dedicated civil rights advocate with street credit to maintain i could have just said, get the heck out of my office. you are being sued. you have this wrong, you've done that ron, you've done the other wrong. that is part of the equation with them. we are fighting for the employee free choice act. they are fighting against it.
we have signed on the association as a party in some of the lawsuits against them. and yet, that is just part of business. that is what we do. that is what they do. at the end of the day, we are all raising our kids in this country. we're of breaking of reading the newspaper, watching the country to be heading in a better direction. and we are all much more powerful than we realize when it comes to setting the course for this country. if you do not extend an open hand, even to someone you are fighting with, we may not get there. in time for our children and our grandchildren to be a better place than we are in right now thank you for your hard work, thank you for your records. thank you for your ambition. -- thank you for your hard work. thank you for your encouragement. thank you for your ambition. people do not think you for that enough. if you have questions, please give me a call.
thank you and god bless. [applause] >> we want to thank you. we want to a knowledge one of our alumni, mayor harvey johnson of jackson, mississippi. he's right there. [applause] another courageous person. i have driven down highway 59, by the way. we're going to open it up for a couple of questions. i think he has a little time. where do we start? >> [inaudible] >> speak up. >> i have a question about how you use the naacp's wonderful
image to increase your membership based and how you do that from a communications standpoint. >> sure, when i started -- really, i was tired about 20 months ago and i started about 16 months ago. we knew that as a manager, you have to focus on some key things. we have been getting some bad press in the national press questioned the relevance of the organization. do not get me started on that. let someone discriminate against you and then figure who you are going to call and then it answer the question. we have been in the red for several years. our staff had been cut from 130 to 55. people like carol here have been doing five jobs when they used to do one.
where you start? the young guys did not get the keys to the store unless the cupboards are bare. i had to get really disciplined. job one was communications. people do not write you a check, $30 or otherwise, if they are not hearing what you are doing. if they are not celebrating your victories, if they do not understand where you are trying to take the country. job one was communications. job two was raising money. . .
>> people are very distinguished, coming back home to the naacp and encouraging people in the field to do the very same thing. you have to understand when you're trying to build membership that everything you do has to do with building membership. winning victories, as well as selling memberships, all about convincing somebody to write you a check for $30. and we're having great success despite these hard times, and we're back and growing again, and that's very exciting.
>> i'm with the class of 2008. [applause] i have a question for you. you talked a lot about prisons and folks that are coming back into the communities. i'm a huge advocate of children of incarcerated parents. so my question to you is, what is your organization doing in looking -- or maybe in the future -- for a lot of those men and women that you guys are looking to kind of bring back into the community? but what are you doing for the kids? and if you are doing anything, i want to talk to you. >> good. the question was what are you doing for the children of incarcerated parents. you know, on the ground, frankly, a lot of our best programs are operated at the state and local level. for instance, in the maine state prisons, they have a program where the naacp chapter in the prison takes videos of men reading stories to their
children and mails them back to them. that's a story that doesn't get told, you know. if you walk around a men's prison -- you expect it in the women's prison. but if you walk around the men's prison, you find a lot of parents in pain and crisis. whenever we do something that allows them to be more connected to their children, our membership grows in that facility. on the national level, for us job number one is making sure people have access to jobs. it may sound like it's about the parents, but it's really about the kids. to make sure people have access to jobs and then fighting for good jobs is a strategy to make sure that families are put -- because when you come out of prison, you can't reunite with families. the families are rue united. and with good jobs, the parents have time for the child. because the best thing for that
child is their parents. we're starting conversations right now based on the search be -- seven neighborhood. and half the inmates come from southern neighborhoods or more. half or more come from the seven neighborhoods, whether it's connecticut or california, south central, bayview, it sort of makes sense, right? well, when i was a kid, which wasn't that long ago -- [laughter] -- but when i was a kid, the chapter had a mix to it, struggling families, flourishing families, they were all in the same group. but the patterns of not just white flight but black flight have continued and people are further and further away from each other. and the leadership has always come from the industrious middle class. when that's away from people who are struggling, then it's
away from the kids who are most in crisis. so we started a conversation -- and i was out visiting a youth detention facility in los angeles county, and the kids really wanted to get involved and get back to the neighborhood. some of them had active branches. but where most of them are from, you know, it was clear that either the branch would need a lot of support to really engage these kids or we would need to set up a new program. so we're starting to have conversations about those seven neighborhoods in each state and how it is that we can actually not just create, you know -- make sure that the child gets a chance to join the naacp isn't behind bars. and really invite them into the tradition of struggle in this country which allowed them to be part of the solution even before they need one more urgently. so that's where our conversation is going. my staff is absolutely -- our team is absolutely committed to
destroying the prison pipeline within our lifetime. we know it's taken four years to get to this point. we've hired a bunch of great organizers, and we're committed to be aggressive, and if you have ideas, i'd love to have the conversation. >> i looked at organizations throughout the country, so i would love to talk to you. >> ok. >> my question is, i myself was involved with a youth group and colleges that are involved and there's disconnects involved with many of my peers, the 25 to 45 crowd. as president of the naacp, what do you have in plan and what are your thoughts about re-engaging that group? many of us, we kind of fell off and thought, we'll pick it up in 20 years. what is your plan to re-engage that group, that generation? >> sure. >> the goal is to be ready well
before 2012, to really move aggressively and bring that generation in. a generation that is an opinionated generation. i'll make sure things are tight. i'm in that generation, so i can say that. i turn 37 on monday. and so we have begun a process, one, of really naming the pain of that generation. i can remember being -- before i realized what crisis our general rage was in, i was a student, i was 20 years old. we were on the steps of the university and it was my friend's 21st birthday and we were giving a toast on his birthday. so the faux black nationalist, public enemy, styles of the times, somebody began pouring a libation.
poured a libation for the brother's birthday. poured a libation in the memory of all of our friends who had been killed before we got to college. and he poured a libation that one more of us would survive to 21. and i was like w.t.f. you know? [laughter] really? really? really, really. that's an accomplishment. the wealthiest country on earth, for a man of any color to survive to 21, that's what we're celebrating this week? but it was rational. it was rational. and when you're on a campus and educated black women outnumber black men five to one or six to one, or they're bragging that they just got parity and all they did to do that, your question is where is the educated young brother? they're either in prison or they're dead. so the naacp nationally, doing
what we've been doing locally sore to many series, is coming out and saying the school, the prison pipeline, is a problem, and we're developing a strategy at the scale of the problem and we will destroy it. it's important to have credibility. two is to also make sure that we are prepared to -- in their own explicit self-interest, help advance that. for instance, we're retooling our diversity report cards. we intend to do more in the financial services industry, for instance, because there's a lot of us in there. and they're coming up against glass ceilings early in their careers. and then finally, you know, besides sort of really making sure that we're keyed in on the issue of long-term and short-term, just marketing the organization effectively. we'll be rolling out a new -- we've become much more aggressive online. we'll be rolling out a new web
system that will ultimately make it possible for people to be more involved more meaningfully in the organization, even if careers take them from town to town to town before they choose to settle down somewhere and get involved in the local civic organizations. and that will happen next month. >> we have time for one more question. >> good afternoon. my name is tanya edwards, from fort lauderdale, that, and i'm also class of 2010. [applause] for the past eight years, i have been the voter education coordinator as well as the special projects coordinator elections.d county office ofú@5j and i want to say thank you, publicly, locally and internationally for the help and support that the naacp broward county youth council has given to the elections office. the naacp youth council in broward county was responsible for assisting the elections office, as well as the broward county schools, for having the first early voting field trips
in the country for high school students, and i want to thank you for that publicly. [applause] also, i'd like to say broward county was the only county that had the most registered high school kids in the state of florida. so i thank you for that as well. >> thank you. you know, there's great work being done in florida, and it's being led by a woman named adora. and you guys are doing great work. one of the great things that should happen in florida is they greatly reformed their tolerance policies, which is what needs to happen across the country. so thank you guys for what you do down there, too. thank you and god bless. [applause] >> i just want to say how fortunate the naacp is. this is an incredibly strong, dynamic, and caring leader. thank you for doing this work and thank you for being a part of this family now. so thank you and god bless you. [applause]
>> sunday on "prime minister's questions," british prime minister gordon brown talks about the government relief efforts in haiti and the creation of the united nations reconstruction agency to respond to future disasters. that's at 9:00 p.m. eastern here on c-span. wednesday, president obama delivers his first state of the union address to congress, laying out his vision for the future of the country and his plan to deal with issues such as unemployment, health care and the wars in iraq and afghanistan. the state of the union address wednesday night. our coverage starts at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. you can also listen to the president's address live on your iphone with the c-span radio app. >> in his weekly online address this week, president obama talks about this week's supreme court decision, clearing the way for corporations to spend freely on political
advertising. health minority leader john boehner follows the president with a republican address. he discusses scott brown's victory this week in the massachusetts special senate election and urges the obama administration and congressional democrats to work together on an alternative health care bill. >> one of the reasons i ran for president is because i believed so strongly that the voices of everyday americans, hard-working americans, just weren't being heard over the powerful voices of the special interests in washington. and the result was a national agenda too often skewed in favor of those with the power to tilt the tables. in my first year in office, we pushed back on that power by implementing historic reforms, to get rid of the influence of those special interests. in my first day in office we closed the revolving door between lobbying firms and the government, so that no one in my administration would make decisions based on the
interests of former or future employers. we barred gifts from federal lobbyists to executive branch officials. we imposed tough restrictions to prevent funds for our recovery from lining the pockets of the well-connected, instead of creating jobs for americans. and for the first time in history we have publicly disclosed the names of lobbyists and non-lobbyists alike who visit the white house every day, so that you know what's going on in the white house, the people's house. we've been making steady progress, but this week the united states supreme court handed a huge victory to the special interests and their lobbyists and a powerful blow to our efforts to rein in sporpt interests. this strikes at our democracy itself. by a 5-4 vote, the court overturned more than a century of law, including a bipartisan campaign finance law written by senators john mccain and russ fine gold that had barred corporations from using their financial clout to directly interfere with elections by running advertisements for or against candidates in the
crucial closing weeks. this ruling opens the floodgates for an unlimited amount of money into our democracy. it gives the special interest lobbyists new leverage to spend millions on advertising to persuade elected officials to vote their way or to punish those who don't. that means that any public servant who has the courage to stand up to the special interests and stand up for the american people can find himself or herself under assault come election time. even foreign corporations can now get into the fact. i can't think of anything more devastating to the public interest. the last thing we need to do is hand more influence to the lobbyists in washington or more power to the special interests to tip the outcome of elections. all of us, regardless of party, should be worried that it will be that much harder to get fair, common-sense financial reforms or close unwarranted tax loopholes that reward corporations from sheltering their income, or shipping american jobs offshore. it will make it more difficult to pass common-sense laws to
promote energy independence, because even foreign entities would be allowed to mix in our elections. it would give the health insurance industry even more leverage to fend off reforms that would protect patients. we don't need to give any more voice to the powerful interests that already drown out the voices of everyday americans, and we don't intend to. when this ruling came down, i instructed my administration to get to work immediately with members of congress willing to fight for the american people to develop a forceful, bipartisan response to this decision. we've begun that work, and it will be a priority for us until we repair the damage that has been done. you know, one of the great republican presidents, teddy roosevelt, fought to limit special interest spending and influence over american political campaigns and warned of the impact of unbridled corporate spending. his message rings as true as ever today. in this age of mass communications, when the decks are too often stacked against ordinary americans, and as long
as i'm your president, i'll never stop fighting to make sure that the most powerful voice in washington belongs to you. thanks. >> i'm house republican leader john boehner. i'm speaking to you from the capitol, where next week, president obama will deliver his first state of the union address. this is a fitting time to pause and take stock of where we are. nearly a year ago the president signed into law $1 trillion stimulus with promises that jobs would be created immediately and that unemployment would stay below 8%. since then roughly three million americans have lost their jobs, while red ink and bailouts have piled up as far as the eye can see. my own state of ohio has endured nine straight months of double-digit unemployment, and for the better part of those nine months, democrats in washington have now focused on this government takeover of health care that working families just can't afford and want nothing to do with. this is what happens when government overreaches and stops listening to the people.
washington democrats believe government knows best, how to spend your hard-earned money. democrats believe we're just one more tax, one new czar and one giant bureaucracy away from solving all of your problems. that's not the america that i know. growing up with 11 brothers and sisters and the son of a bar owner, and as i travel the country i meet a lot of people who feel the same way. for months now a political rebellion has been brewing. one born from the american people's opposition to greater government control over our economy and their lives. that rebellion propelled republican scott brown to victory in this week's massachusetts special elections. scott's win in the bluest of blue states gives us new hope that common sense will prevail, that maybe now the hard work and the entrepreneurship of the american people will no longer be stifled by washington democrats costly job killing an agendas, an agenda republicans have stood on principle and fought tooth and nail against. but we know better. we know that washington
democrats will pull out all the stops to try and shove this government takeover of health care with medicare cuts and tax hikes. if there's a sweetheart deal that needs to be cut, democrats will cut it. and if there's a vote that needs to be bought, they'll buy it. haven't we had enough of government propped up on payoffs and pork barrel spending? haven't we had enough of the same old us versus them politics that uses yesterday's battles to distract us from today's problems? we're all in this together, and we need positive, forward-looking solutions to bring us together. so for families asking, where are the jobs? republicans have offered common sense solutions to help small businesses invest and hire new workers. we've also put forth a responsible blueprint that makes the tough spending choice that's others just talk about. on health care, republicans have proposed the only bill that will lower premiums by up to 10%, and we do this by implementing smart common-sense
reforms, whether it's letting families and businesses buy health insurance across state lines or ending the junk lawsuits that contribute to higher health care costs. and we get the job done without cutting medicare or raising your taxes. these solutions aren't being devised behind closed doors with special interests having the final say. we're soliciting feedback on facebook and twitter and developing the best ideas, and all the details are available at solutions.gop.gov. those in washington now have a choice -- work with republicans to get our nation back on its feet or double down on the job-killing policies that are making matters worse. so at the state of the union, we'll listen to what the president has to say, but make no mistake -- the powers that be in washington keep turning their backs on the people. the republicans will continue to challenge the status quo and offer better solutions. our fight for reform, for freedom and for common sense is
far from over. thanks for listening. >> sunday on "washington journal," a discussion on the status of health care legislation in light of the massachusetts senate election, with byron york of the "washington examiner" and christopher hayes of "the nation." also, a look at the american red cross' haitian relief efforts, with suzy de ferran sis of the american red cross. then we'll talk about the future of guantanamo bay detainees. that's live here on c-span at 7:00 a.m. eastern. >> and now, an anti-abortion rally on the national mall. the march for life, education and defense fund hosts this event every year, marking the anniversary of the 1973 roe v-wade decision on abortion rights. this is just over two hours.
♪ [cheers and applause] >> welcome to march for life 2010! [cheers and applause] >> i want to welcome to the stage now our dear friend, someone who has given her life to working for the pre-born and trying to save them, ms. nellie gray, president of march for life. [cheers and applause] >> welcome, welcome, to this 37th annual march for life. you know, when we began marching 37 years ago, we only thought we had to do one march. but unfortunately, our government didn't hear us, and so we continued and we come today to washington, again, to washington officialdom to tell them we are here, we must
overturn roe v. wade and we must have our country according to the will of the people, not of roe versus wade. >> there are so many people, and the people are still coming here. we are in large, large numbers today, and that's despite the fact that we have a little bit of good weather, even though it seemed it wouldn't be good. so we have a good day. we have many people speaking today on our program, and we wish we had time on the program for many more that we would like to hear from. but i think you'll enjoy this as we come and bring our message to washington officialdom. and, of course, we open everything with prayer, and we
are pleased to have for the opening prayer today reverend martin nins minns from the congregation of north america. >> let us pray. father god, we are your people called by your name, and we assembly together this day to seek your mercy. we gather in the shadow of the disaster in haiti. we remember before you those who have died and pray for those who grieve their loss. we pray for the injured and the homeless. we pray especially for the many children whose lives have been devastated. comfort them, lord. lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer. we gather on this day mindful
of another tragedy. we cannot see their faces or hear their cries. but we agree for the millions who have died because of the nightmare of abortion, we pray for them. we pray for those who mourn their untimely end. forgive those who are complicit in their deaths. forgive us, lord, for not doing more to prevent their loss. lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer. we gather to renew our commitment to the protection of every human life. we know your heart. we know your love for every child born or unborn. we marvel that you have made every one in your own image. forgive us for the times when we have forgotten this. forgive us for the many ways in which we have failed to respect the sanctity of every human
life. give us courage to be a voice for the voiceless. lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer. we gather today to pray for our leaders. we pray especially for those who even now are making decisions about providing health care for all our people. protect them from choices made out of political expediency with no mind for your truth. remind them of your promises. turn their hearts to the children. lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer. and now, to the god who shows his love for the whole world, to the gift of his only son, jesus, the christ, and who calls us to do the same, the glory, majesty, dominion and authority before all time and now and forever, amen.
>> amen. >> when our forefathers came, they certainly built a set of principles for our country, one that we hope to carry on to correct some of the evils that we have right now, but to carry on, so that today, as usual, we pledge allegiance to our country because this is our country, we appreciate it, and we pledge our allegiance to keep it whole and safe. the pledge of allegiance is offered by mr. don kehoe, supreme secretary of the knights of columbus. [cheers and applause] >> thank you, nellie, for inviting me, and even more for all you've done to advance the
cause of pro-life over many years i'm an-to march with you. way i want to thank everyone who's here. well keep marching on washington until we get the change this country needs. and the thing we need to change is the culture. we must build a culture of life where every life, born and unborn, is respected and protected, and where women faced with difficult situations know that they are not alone and that they will get the help they deserve. the knights of columbus college poll released today confirms what we have long known. it found that 56% of americans, a clear majority, consider abortion morally wrong. just 25% think abortion is not a moral issue, and only 19%, less than two in 10, consider abortion morally acceptable. increasingly, americans, especially young americans, 58% of those 18 to 29, know that we need change when it comes to abortion, and we will not stop
marching until roe v. wade is changed once and for all. the nearly 1.8 million knights of columbus, many thousands of whom are here today, are proud to choose life. and since the knights of columbus led the campaign to have congress add the words "under god" in the pledge of allegiance, it's my honor to ask you to join me as we say hand over heart, i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
>> thank you, we are coming to washington today to talk with what i call washington officialdom. that means washington. that means the president of the united states and the executive officers. that means the supreme court as our judicial body, and that means the members of congress as our legislative body. and what we are coming to tell them is why are we here? on a weekday, a cold day, coming from far distances, riding buses all night long under great handicaps and so forth. why are we here? the theme for this march for life this year is stand up now. where did we get that phrase for part of the theme? on the telephone one day the women called me and asked me for information about parking and so forth to see what she
really needed. i said, have you ever been to the march before? and she said, no, we haven't. but we have decided to stand up, and that's the reason we have, stand up! [cheers and applause] and that stand up is not only for all of us as the citizens of america coming to washington in the buses. that also means washington officialdom. you stand up also for all of the human beings, including the pre-born children. [cheers and applause] now, in order for our standing up to really have some meaning and body and effort, we must unite on the principles, the life principles, so that we know why we are coming also to washington.
now, these life principles are on the inside back cover of our annual report, they're on our website and so forth. what they say is the very essence of why we are coming together as pro-life people. the life principles flourish, acknowledge and say that an individual human being is in existence at fertilization. a tiny individual who has a right to life, endowed by our creator. this right to life united with the right to life of born and pre-born human beings also must assure that the protection of the constitution of the united states is there to protect that individual human life, whether or not someone wants to acknowledge the existence that
a human being is there in existence from fertilization throughout the natural continuum of life. now, in order to legislate or move bills and so forth, sometimes, unfortunately, you hear people who say they are pro-life and undoubtedly want to save the babies. but they want to negotiate with the abortionists that make some exceptions. everybody operating in the name of right to life must understand they don't own the life of the pre-born child. they cannot negotiate it away with abortionists. [cheers and applause] and, therefore, these life principles say that we shall protect the innocent pre-born children and the aged and the handicapped throughout the natural continuum of their life.
no exceptions and no compromises. now, when we state these principles, there is no justification of thinking, well, we might save a few more babies. yes, we might, and we must, and we must try to save the number of babies that we can. however, in trying to save the individual life of either a born or a human being -- a born or a pre-born human being, you may not in any way kill another human being. that doesn't save any lives whatsoever. now, when you look at these basic principles, know that they have a substance behind them. this is not just somebody in the pro-life movement deciding all of a sudden to draft some life principles. they are indeed the essence of the united states and the world in which we live in america.
the substance of those principles come from our declaration of independence. they come from straight, secular homicide law, which says thou shallot not kill. they come from basic principles, church principles, such as the letters from the roman catholic church and the declaration on secured abortions. so it isn't that we're dreaming up something out of new, clear air. these are the principles that have been with us for our country since we began. [cheers and applause] now, how do we communicate this in washington officialdom? we've got to get the president to hear us. we've got to get the justices to hear us, and we've got to get congress to hear us. the march for life has written
a letter to the president, and it is a -- a copy of it is in our annual report. you may get copies of it from us either at the hotel or here. get a copy of the letter that we have written to the president. and what we have done is look at his speech that he made in june of this year. it was at one of the horror camps of the world war ii holocaust and he and the german chancellor went to look at that memorial, and when they looked at it, they were horrified. and he makes some important statements about saying, when you look at the horror that was here that was done by a government, to the government's own people, then you know that that was wrong. and he said, after looking at the horror there, it was
something he he would never forget. mr. president, it seems as if you haven't gotten it. there is a killing of the innocent children here in america. you have forgotten it already since june, and the essence of this killing is hard numbers. everyone in washington officialdom must understand that when that official wakes up every morning, open their eyes every morning, must know that by their work that day on their watch, an estimate 3d,000 innocent boys and girls -- 3,000 innocent boys and girls will be killed that day in america. 3,000. and since the new administration, in their first year, an estimated one million innocent pre-born boys and girls have been killed during the first year of the
administration -- this new administration. and that is a numbers game. the numbers game, however, is that. it doesn't make any difference that it was a smaller number in world war ii, a larger number now. the number that matters is whether or not the law of our land allows anyone to intentionally kill innocent pre-born children in our country of even one human being. and we are saying the purpose of coming to this march for life is to go to the washington officialdom and say that we have to have, by the law and the love of our land, to stop the individual killing of these innocent pre-born children. we must tell our president that he is the president of all of the people, and that includes the innocent pre-born children. [cheers and applause]
we also want to speak to the justices, because when they, unfortunately, handed down the opinion in 1973 of roe v. wade, the justices said they didn't know when life began, and, therefore, the children were not persons and were being killed with impunity. well, by the time 2007 came along, we had a case, the gonzalez decision from them. they now knew when the children -- when life began and when the children were here, because they described partial-birth abortion, abortion of killing innocent children, and they then approved it -- they described it as pulling the arms and legs off of children and sucking out the brains, and then they approved of this type of activity. as if it were with impunity in america.
and, therefore, our justices must indeed know that every morning, when they wake up, 3,000 innocent children will be intentionally killed, and it's for their work that these children are killed. and they must overturn roe versus wade. now, how are we going to get this done? it's by education. when our. was at the museum in germany, he said when the allied troops came in and saw the horror of the camp, they were so horrified that they went into the village and -- around his people and said, "come, you must look and see what has happened -- has been happening in your country and in your town." the education then that we want for washington officialdom, we
want them to look at an innocent pre-born child by sonogram in the mother's womb, silently in the home of the mother's womb, and recognize that the innocent pre-born child is there, hands and feet, head, brains, and then we want every one of our washington officialdom to look at the body of a pre-born child who has been torn apart by surgical abortion and let them know that 3,000 of these children will be killed every day, and they must stop that type of activity. in our country. so the purpose of our coming today is to try to find a way. we can try to take more cases up to the supreme court. we can also come to our congress and try to get bills
introduced, which the march for life indeed will be doing, and our effort, then, is to educate washington officialdom, what a pre-born child looks like who has unfortunately been killed by surgical abortion and get that -- those washington officials to say that they want to stop this evil in our country. so the message is here, the letters are out to our president. more letters will go to congress from the march for life, and we will begin here in 2007 a whole new surge of trying to educate our congress and our judiciary and our president to stop the killing. that's why we're here in america today. thank you. [cheers and applause]
>> you know, what is the pro-life movement? a lot of people are talking about being pro-life. i don't think there's any doubt that people who say they are pro-life, indeed want to save babies. all of us do. we want to stop the killing. however, we can't seem to get the movement united. the only way we're going to be able to stop the killing is for every organization that calls themselves pro-life shall unite on the life principle. all of them. no exception and no compromise. [cheers and applause] and now, to help us understand what the issue is, we have an extraordinary doctor with us today. dr. john bruchalski, o.b.g.y.n.
he has an extraordinary story, and we want to show by his presence here and the presence of the next two groups who will speak, that the pro-life movement is a unit. it is not only trying to change the law, but it is also trying to provide services and education. dr. john. [applause] >> my name is dr. john bruchalski. and on behalf of all medical professionals who could not be here today, i want to thank you all for your prayers and your support. it was because of people like you who helped change my heart. i deliver babies and i once did abortions. so we want obama care? >> no. >> do we want health care that hurts women and kills innocent human life through abortion? >> no! >> do we want health care that compromises the consciences of doctors, nurses and patients? >> no!
>> do we want health care that makes you feel guilty for living? >> no! >> of course not. we don't want it. real health care reform is not a political football that occurs in those buildings around us, but it is a transformation of our hearts and our souls. it's a love of neighbor, it's a love of service in medicine that casts out the fear of an unplanned pregnancy, a renewal of the face of the earth. real reform is based on practicing excellent medicine. real reform cares for the least of our brothers and sisters. real reform includes the healing presence of the divine physicians. divine mercy care is leading real reform. politicians and policymakers need a viable alternative to planned parenthood. crisis pregnancy centers need
to find caring physicians to see their clients. aborted women deserve not to be told lies. unborn sons and daughters need to be given the chance to live and thrive. patients need to be able to trust their doctors not to destroy the lives of their children and their grandchildren and their grandparents and give sound medical advice. divine mercy care is leading real reform. check us out. in northern virginia in the shadows of the capitol and the congress, divine mercy care has two entities -- the tepeyec center, which delivers babies, 100 of which are to pregnancy pry sis centers. we raise money to serve the underserved. we also opened up divine mercy pharmacy, d.m.c. pharmacy. it's in chantilly, virginia, that ships to virginia, new york, pennsylvania, massachusetts and georgia.
please do not give lip service to this march and to our god. go home and support your pro-life physicians and pharmacists. use divine mercy care, the tepeyec care center and d.m.c. pharmacy as a resource for your physicians, your family and your friends. divine mercy care has a solution to the health care crisis, but it is not convenient. marching here today in the sleet is not convenient. living the truth in the power of the holy spirit is not convenient. supporting your pro-life doctor, nurse or pharmacist is not convenient. abortion is convenient and a lie, so step out of your comfort zone, stands up and support your pro-life medical professional why your community. and under her mantel and his mercy, which endures forever,
may god be with us. [cheers and applause] >> he was here to testify that it is possible to change, that he had known, of course, of the abortion industry, and he was able to convert, and, therefore, we're going to ask that his example be used by a washington officialdom. now, you know that one of the things that is part also of the pro-life movement is that all of the pregnant mothers, unfortunately, did not escape abortion. most of the women that i have talked to who have had abortions, i found that they were, unfortunately, given wrong information. they were under pressure for that abortion, and unfortunately, they experienced it. and when i hear the stories of
the women who have now had abortions and offer services so that we can get the healing for awful the women in america, we have with us today the -- georgette forney, silent no more, along with jeanette moreno. >> hello, everyone, thank you, nellie. i'm georgette forney, as nellie said and i'm the president of ang >> i cans for life and co-founder of the silent no more awareness campaign. i'm here to tell you about the courageous women standing behind me holding these "i regret my abortion" signs. these women are being silent no more about a very personal and difficult choice we made
earlier in our lives. those who support abortion like to discuss it from a chorte calipers peculiar tiff, but -- from a theoretical perspective. but here today to discuss it from a personal perspective. we have personally experienced abortion. we bought the lie that they told us at the clinic that it was only a blob of tissue, that it wasn't a baby. we now know it was, an we are up here because we have come to the place in our grieving to be able to acknowledge our aborted babies, honoring them and saying their lives mattered. [cheers and applause] we also want any woman or man who has experienced an abortion
to know help is available. if you're watching this and can relate to that feeling of having a knife in your stomach and feeling it twist when you hear the word abortion, you're not alone. if you hear cries in the night in your nightmares or every year on a certain day, either the date of your abortion or the date that the baby was due, you deal with pain and you spiral emotionally. we want you to know you are not alone. there are after-abortion recovery programs that can help you, and they are available throughout the country. they will offer you peace and forgiveness. our website, www .silentnomoreawareness.org has a wonderful list of resources under our help section. so many of us thought that abortion would solve our problem pregnancy, but the
reality is the abortion created a host of other problems for us personally, physically and spiritually. abortion changes you forever. we agree with those who say that women deserve better than abortion. we've been down that dead-end road, and we want to prevent another generation from wasting their time and their life going down the same direction. personal experience inspires us to work to make abortion unthinkable and unnecessary. illegal. we will be -- we are the reality of abortion, and we will be silent no more. thank you. [cheers and applause] >> i'm jeanette moreno, co-founder of the silent no more awareness campaign. [cheers and applause]
and i bring you greetings on behalf of father frank. let's see the signs supporting the campaign! that's right! we want to invite you, after the march for life, stay up at the supreme court at 3:15 and hear the brave men and women of the campaign give their testimonies. and then we want you to take this information back to your hometown and share it, because we all know someone who's hurting from an abortion, and we help bring them to healing. and get them to register their regret on our website anonymously, so that these voices that do speak out can speak with greater force and power than ever before. we want to see next year millions of people marching with these signs saying they regret their abortion. go to our website, silent no more awareness.org and partner with the campaign. thank you, god bless you. [cheers and applause]
>> and remember that the services that they provide are free, so that when you hear people talking about the assistance -- the assistants that we have are from people who are very skilled and the assistance is free. and you know, about free assistance for problem pregnancies or any of the pregnancies. one of the first introductions that i had to the pro-life movement was not trying to undo roe v. wade, but rather, i was talking to a lady and she said, oh, i've got to run. i've got to pick the girl up. and i said, "what girl, where?" she knew, unfortunately, of a girl who was pregnant and at that point had no home to go to
and provided a voluntary free service of assistance. those are pregnancy aide help and they are available throughout the united states now. one of the persons who was in that initial group of women who was providing the services is denise, and she is the founder of the national life service and here to tell us of the work that is available for you. >> god bless all of you. i well many you could to event. i am denise, the president and national director of the national life center. we are a network of pregnancy services throughout the country. there are over 3,500 such centers throughout the country. you need to be aware of that, if you are not already, and make sure that the people in
your community are aware of that. there has always been help for these women, even before roe versus wade, my office in woodbury, new jersey, is now observing its 40th year of service. 40 years. we pre-date roe vee wade by three years. we knew there were problems afoot already. we knew there were people threatening life. we started our service in 1970 and we're proud to still be available for these women and girls. but i am sorry to say that we are here 40 years. we, as nellie, felt that one or two years and we'd get this job done and reverse this horrible decision once it was made. obviously, that has not happened. it is up to us to continue this. we provide any service that the girl or woman needs to carry her child to term. does she need medical care, legal advice, someplace to stay? the normal thing that everyone needs to carry a child to term. most importantly, she needs love, understanding, and someone to listen, someone who
cares to give their time. time is more important than money for many people. our centers don't operate alone, obviously. we need the resources of the doctors and the people in the community, all the good-hearted people who will share their resources, financial and physical. so i invite you to join all of us throughout the country. our national toll-free hotline is in its 26th year. it's the longest running hotline for pregnancy services. the number is 800-848-love. i encourage you to use that number. we can directly connect the caller with the center closest to her, wherever she is throughout the country. please use that number whenever you know of a young lady or a woman or a young girl who is pregnant and having problems, whether she's thinking of abortion or not. we can still help her. we have all the resources available for her. we'll find the help she needs. we love her. we don't want her to do what these ladies behind me had to endure through the ignorance of
the people who lied to them. people are still lying to these girls. now, if you're a sidewalk counselor and you go in front of a clinic with the literature, as soon as she goes inside that clinic, if she does go inside that clinic, they take all that information away from her. and, of course, they generally don't let her see the ultrasound, which they have to do to make sure what stage of gestation the baby is. but they don't let her see that. many of our centers throughout the country now are using ultrasound imaging, so that we can show the young ladies what their baby looks like in the womb, and she knows, and she can bond with that baby. as soon as she sees that baby, 90% of abortion-minded women will choose life when they see the baby in the wooge. -- womb. so i encourage you to support your local centers wherever they may be in your community, regardless of their affiliation. support them, so that if they are interested and able to provide ultrasound imaging, which we know saves lives, that
can encourage them to do that. they need your finances to do that. it's expensive. it's expensive to run our centers. we need your help, your prayers and your support in any way you can give it. remember, the national life center in woodbury, new jersey. we're here to help anybody. our number, 800, 848-love. there's help available, we've always been here. thanks be to god. god bless you. [cheers and applause] . .
>> recognizing that when we have the the the agent for the handicapped, some people will not respect the right to life of those that have the age for the handicapped. with us is terry schindler. her mother, her brother, and her sister, suzanne. there will be introduced by a brother paul o'donnel of the schaivo foundation. >> thank you, pro-life america. and thank you for organizing this march for life and giving us the opportunity to be here today. we will address the important
suspect of euthanassia. the sad fact is that it is alive, well, and thoroughly making progress here in the united states and abroad. we need your help so that no individual will be starved or dehydrated in this country or abraod. we will be pro-life, whole-life, an supportd the life of the fertilized baby in the womb until natural death. we will support that life and be pro-life. our current president, president obama, we need a dialogue. when he was a united states senator, his worst regret was to save the life of terry schaivo. we will not forget terry
schaivo. we will not forget our jewish brothers and sisters that learned the lesson long ago, never again, never again. but we must proclaim, never again for the terry schaivos. never again. when a march by that supreme court and you can't out for the lives of the unborn child and their mothers, please offer a prayer for the vulnerable brothers and sisters that are in hospitals and nursing homes and cannot speak for themselves. i am here today with terry schaivo's mother, her brother, her sister, and her aunt. before i have bobby address you on behalf of the foundation, one last thing. it is very hard for public people, especially in hollywood
and the industry of entertainment to come forward and brave the cause of life. those of you that like country music, listen to what bobby has to say. those of you that put on at a hat and cowboy boots, listen to what is coming out. -- up. >> i would first like to thank nelly grey for giving my family the opportunity to be here today. on behalf of my family, please know that we remain dedicated to helping other families so that no one will have to suffer the barbaric and cruel death like my sister terry. her death was not a so-called and of life matter. she was a person with a brain injury and was deliberately targeted to be killed because of her disability. to all of our pro-life friends, we need your help in fighting against this protest euthanasia
agenda. that way, we can continue to protect the families. on april 11, and indianapolis indiana, country music legend randy travis and country music star colin ray will be performing the first annual terry schiavo life in hope concert. this concert will benefit terry's foundation. the special concert will help us continue this life for the tens of thousands of brain injured persons like terry living in the united states today. please go to livenation.com and purchase tickets for the april 11 event in indianapolis, indiana. again, that is livenation.com. then you for being here, and god
bless you all. >> we're getting down to some important business. these are the legislators. we're delighted to introduce, from the senate, senator sam brownback of kansas. [cheers and applause] >> thanks, nelly. do you realize now for the first time since the polling has been done, you now live in a majority pro-life country? and you're the reason for it. you have change hearts and minds. you did it by persuading people and living for a culture of life. keep it up.
we have a lot of members of congress, and we have just won a health care cause, there will be no abortion in the health- care bill. because of your interest here. i am more convinced than ever that we are going to win the cause of life. we have to win it. the movement alive will not be silenced and it will not be still. you are winning the hearts and minds. we are going to win this fight. keep it up. it got bless you all. -- god bless you all. >> look at this wonderful group of members of congress that we have with us today.
to lead this delegation to us is the hon. mike pence of indiana. he is the conference committee chairman. >> thank you, now late. on behalf of my fellow marchers, audrey pence, age 15, charlotte pence, age 16, i am mike pence, and from indiana, and i am pro-life. yet come to this nation's capital of the historic movement. they have been met with the most pro-abortion president in u.s. history. mexico overturned unnecessary and destructive and brought research, and health care bill that was poised to provide
government subsidies for elected abortion. let us say with conviction that ending an unborn human life is morally wrong. it is also morally wrong to take the taxpayer dollars of millions of pro-life americans and use it to subsidize abortion at home and abroad. abortion is nhot -- not health care. abortion funding has no place in health care legislation now or ever. abortion organizations overseas have no right to american foreign aid. and the time has come to deny any and all federal funding to planned parenthood of america appeared -- of america. thomas jefferson, and words that are inscribed down the small,
god gave us life and liberty. i say to all that are in this movement, life may be losing in washington d.c., but life is winning in america. because of all of you, the pro- lifer america will take this congress back in 2010 and take this country back in 2012, so help us god. [cheers and applause] >> afternoon. i am the congressman from wisconsin. during my six years as chairman of the house judiciary committee, i managed the law that banned partial birth abortion, and the law that tried to save terry schiavo's life.
we have been reading an awful lot about health care lately. the original bill that obama, pelosi and ried introduced used your tax dollars. it is morally wrong and it is also bad policy. we should not use the power of taxation granted and the congress by the united states constitution to force you to pay for a procedure that you believe is morally wrong. congress has recognized that for 34 years with the hyde amendment being on the books. the people that have buried the health care bill are trying to deceive all of you in thinking that this war has been one. we have won the battle by defeating obama-care with the help of the voters of massachusetts britain [applause]
but the people that are trying to push this law through, and to make you pay for elective abortions, they are going to step back and help you are not as involved in the next three, four, or six months. they're going to come up with something that is just as bad as what was defeated in the massachusetts election and try to push it through. my message to all of you is simple. the price of liberty is eternal vigilance. we believe in life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness since 1776. you can't have liberty. you can't have the pursuit of happiness if you do not have life. [cheers] stay awake.
don't fall asleep. keep on going to your representatives and senators, town meetings, keep sending us postcards and females, keep bugging us. i like you folks to bug me. the more you but thus, the more fights we will win. thank you will, god bless you, and god bless america. >> welcome to our nation's capitol. thank you for coming to this year's march for life. i am a proud mom of a 80-year- old. he is the light of my life and also happens to have down syndrome. it breaks my heart to know that 90% of women who find out that their baby has down's syndrome choose to abort. we know that abortion is never the answer. what we need to do is raise awareness to the joys of motherhood.
we need to support moms and dads that find themselves in the midst of an unexpected pregnancy. they might be scared, they might be confused, but we might give them love, courage, and support, we can show them a way that protects life. thank you for coming today. if you are standing up for our children. you're standing up for my son, cole rodgers, you're standing up for the future of america. may god continue to bless america. [applause] >> good afternoon. i am congress been aderholt from alabama -- congressman aderholt from alabama. a lot of you're standing up for pro-life. we have a lot of work to do in washington and here at the
capitol to protect life. we have a lot of work to do to change the hearts and minsd of the -- minds of the american people. you don't know how much your presence means to us in congress and the entire nation, may god bless you and may god bless america. >> good afternoon. i am taught a can from the state of missouri. i am pro-life -- todd aiken from the state of missouri. i am pro-life. it is my tenth year joining me here. it calls to mind a characteristic that describes all of you. it is a character of every great leader. there is a time for every great
leader when the houng to some enterprise, and some would say that the cause is hopeless. the pilgrims at the beach of plymouth, washington at valley forge. what those great leaders discovered through their dark and and determination to do what was right, that god brings deliverance from very strange quarters. we sought example this week of the same thing. the socialized medicine bill was a big threat to life. deliverance came from a strange quarter in the. massachusetts. -- strange quarter indeed. massachusetts. you have the quality of being here year after year.
thank you. and god bless you. >> roscoe bartlett from maryland. are we empowered by massachusetts? ok. i have been here since 1992, and you keep coming and coming. each year, the polls show that more and more americans are pro- life. there is a god, ultimate victory is ours, and god bless you. >> i am from louisiana. i am very proud to be pro-life. i want everyone to repeat after me. i am pro-life.
>> i am pro-life. >> we are pro-life. >> we are pro-life. >> america is pro-life. >> america is pro-life. >> i just came back from a trip to southeast asia. one of the countries i visited was cambodia. while i was there, i visited the killing fields of cambodia. they showed the delegation what they call the killing trees. the reason they call it that is because they used to hang babies from the trees and they used to slam babies against the trees. i tell you that story, because some of the acts that we use in abortion are just as brutal. i want people to understand that abortion is more of an issue of our time, and we have to speak loudly and order for us
to understand -- and for our leaders to understand that we are pro-life. i was so honored last night to preach to about 500 students in louisiana. seeing so many young faces gives me some much hope and energy. i know that this fight will be long and hard. and we will need all the young people to speak out loudly to our leaders. thank you very much, and carry on with the fight. >> i.m. -- i am todd from kansas. greetings, america. greetings from my wife who is in topeka, kan. at the march for life. she wants you to tell that even though she is in topeka, kansas, her avatar is here with you to
march to the supreme court. a lot of americans are here in spirit. you're not alone. we are changing the view of america on the issue of life. it is because of you sacrificing every year to come out, and it ensures those with the work daily to try to elevate the value of life. abraham lincoln said, with public sentiment, anything is possible. without it, nothing is. those of former public sentiment are more important than those that pass statutes and render decisions. so what you're doing is very important. we would call a public opinion. thank you for being here. let's move forward and change the laws of this land.
>> my name is chris smith. this is my wife marie. thank you all for being an important part of the greatest human rights struggle on earth. the right-to-life movement. i also want to thank you for your steadfast report of the stupak amendment that has made the difference in ensuring that a very pro-abortion health care reform bill will not become the law of this land. we admire and daughter the extraordinary post-reported women that are silent no more. -- post-aborted when men that are silent no more. president obama, the abortion
president, you should know this. even though you have unleashed the full might and power of your administration in the promotion of abortion, both here and around the world, especially in africa and latin america, we pray for you. and we will fast for you, even as we tenaciously fight your anti-life policies. years ago, a friend of mine wrote a book with the title inspired by the question of a young child who unexpectedly walk into a room as she was preparing a lecture on abortion. the 3-year-old took one big look at the photo of a baby badly bruised and battered and shouted, "mommy, who wrote the baby -- broke the baby?"
that child immediately knew that babies are smashed and broken to bits by abortion. president obama, is it really so hard to understand that abortion is violence against children? a form of child abuse, falsely marketed as choice, human rights, health care? there is nothing but nine or healing about abortion. certainly not for the 52 million unborn babies that have been killed since 1973. and certainly not for the women that have been hurt physically and psychologically. the medical data strongly suggests that the subsequent children are often premature or low birth weight babies. america is a serious human rights abuse, mr. president.
with trust in god, we recommit and reiterate our resolve to pray, fast, and work hard to enfranchise all regardless of age, race, sex, disability, or condition of dependency. god bless you, and thank you. >> good afternoon, everyone. i am a proud cornhuskers from nebraska. nice to see all of the people that made this long trip. the nisei hello to the friends from university, my alma maters. think it will sell much where commitment to the cause of justice that brings us here today. -- and thank you all so much for your commitment to the cause of justice that brings us here
today. thank you so much for your willingness to say to the congress and white house that we are people of life. let's just imagine for a moment, if the president and congress really hurt you. what would it be like if the president himself came here next year and said, i have listened to you. i have thought about this. i believe abortion hurts women, and women deserve better. i am pro-life. mr. president, i say to you, you are invited. join us. we extend the hand of friendship. become a person of life. as we debate the future of health care policy, we must also continue to say that abortion is not health care.
no american should be forced to pay for it or have the government come to sit in it. your engagement is absolutely critical, young people. you have come here to petition your government peacefully, to exercise your civil-rights and make your verses heard -- voices heard. whether it is a child in the womb or an expectant mother, let's join together and let the world now that it is the gift of life that gives us true pope -- hope. god bless america. >> good afternoon. i am virginia frocks -- fox from north carolina. i want to say thank you for being here today. i was thinking about this group of people that come here every
year. there are many people that come to this mall every year. you're the most unselfish people that come here, because you are dedicated to the cause of live for everyone in this country, and for people you will never know. so thank you for what you're doing. in to know that your actions do make a difference. there are many young people here. we all want to encourage you to continue to be involved. find many ways to be involved in our country. don't ever think that what you're doing doesn't make a difference. this week, we have seen a tremendous difference in what happened. we need you to stay engaged. let's turn our country into a country that honors life. you can lead the charge.
thank you and god bless you. [cheers and applause] >> good morning. this is my better half. my wife, my love, the mother of my two children. i am a congressman from the great state of new jersey, and we are all pro-life. this is the day that the lord has made. let us rejoice and be glad in it. i join you in the race, this race against time, this race for life. i join you in the fight to save our children. the fight to save our prosperity. very soon, we will be marching. as we march, let us all shout out that we are pro-life. let me shout out loud that
abortion is murder. let us sound the trumpets so that politicians can hear our call to them. just as they sounded the trumpet thousands of years ago and the walls came down, we can sound our trumpet again, and the walls of ignorance will come down. the walls of repression will come down. the gates of life will be open to all of us. let us stay in the fight, stay in the race, and keep the faith. god bless you. >> i am louis golmert, i am from the united states of america.
how about that? i also happen to be from texas. let me tell you, in 1983, my wife kathy and i were going to have a baby. a-10 weeks early, she went into labor. the doctors did what they could, but katy was coming. her odds were not that good live. they gave her 20%, 40, 60, 80, 100% oxygen. they said they need to take her to the top-level of the natal care unit. they took her by ambulance to shreveport. i stayed with my wife in tyler, but she said to go do anything i can.
i fall of the ambulance and i got there. they said it was so good that i had come. they set up a stool there. her breathing was so shallow, so fast, so erratic, her heartbeat was so fast and erratic that they have a monitor set up. the doctor says, she knows your voice. she knows who you are. her eyes don't work. she won't see you. but talk to her. let her know you love her. it will help her live. for hours, i sat there. it wasn't very long as i rubbed her little arm that she reached out with her little hand and grabbed the end of my finger. hours later, the doctor came by and as i was still sitting there. he said, have you looked at the monitors? her breathing had stabilized.
her heart had stabilized. he said, that child is at drawing from your love. drawing your security. drawing life from you. how could i leave? i wouldn't. friends, there are babies that don't know you, but thank god you are there as they reach out to draw on your security, draw on your love so that they may have life. thank you for what you're doing. thank you for letting god use you as a vessel. my daughter gave me this scarf and said, where it, daddy. it will keep you warm. for life, it is going to happen. you're going to save those children. thank you very much.
>> for 40 years, have been a physician trying to save lives. today, when you look at each other and look around in the faces of the people that are here today, when you put your hat on the pillow tonight and say your prayers, you will know that you have saved a life as well. all over this country, you are setting an example for america to stand up and be counted. i am dr. parker griffith from alabama, the fifth district. i appreciate each and everyone of you for being here. you will save more lives than all of the medical profession's combined. thank you so much. >> hello. i am a congressman wally herger from california. i want to commend each and everyone of you for traveling here today to defend the rights
of unborn children. we must work together to protect the unborn, to oppose taxpayer funding of abortion. people's mines are changing, and we are getting closer to protecting the any laborite to live. -- inalieable right to live. keep up the fight, god bless you. >> i am jim jordan from ohio. let me thank you for two things. first of all, thank you for your willingness to get in the game. i learned a long time ago that nothing has meaning or significance -- nothing of meaning or significance happens by hanging on the sidelines. you have to get in the game and take the risks associated. we're never going to get a fair
shake from some of those in the press. they're talking about the way normal folks do things because of the way the elite national media it says things. he said, i get up and read the bible and "the new york times" to see what each side is love -- up to. we live in the greatest nation of history -- in history. you all know the old story from scripture, when the israelites were cast against the philistines, who will fight goliath? the response was, he is so big, we can never did see him. david's response was, he is so big, i can't miss. >> i am a congressman steve king from iowa.
my oldest son's name is david, named for the same reason. anybody here from massachusetts? thank you, massachusetts. thank you for helping a skill that anti-like bill. -- us kill that anti-life bill. you delivered a teachable moment for all of america. the white house was watching. that is for the next appointment that might change the balance in the supreme court will come from, the white house. this is our teachable moment to the white house. mr. president, at what instant did your life begin? we believe it began at the incident of conception for you, mr. president.
and we believe that human life is sacred and all of its forms -- in all of its forms. you can't see what i can see, but i see pro-life america coming back here until we are here to celebrate the end of roe vs. wade. god bless you all. >> i am from ohio. i want to thank all of you from being here. -- for being here. i had a lot of students come down to washington, express their opinion of what they think we should be doing down here. that's life. when you lookñr out, the mall is amazing.
alwaysxd remember, this is a participatory democracy. if you do not participate, it does not work. these are americans that want to make the country work. that want to make sure that your views and ideas are translated to the capitol building and over at the supreme court. we want to make sure that the folks in massachusetts -- they put their cry out and they changed. in 1775, the folks that gathered at lexington, grain, and concord, the shot heard around the world. we're letting americans know that they have a voice. they can change things. we will have a congress that is right to life. thank you very much. >> i'm congressman thaddeus mcconner.
it is an honor to be here with you today as we peacefully assemble, not in an active opposition, but a labor of love. not as a partisan cause, but as a human cause. the birth of the culture of human life founded upon the certain evidence and inaliable truths, the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. through your efforts as we have heard, and majority of the american nation is pro-life. in the shadows of the capital, we can see a majority of the politicians are pro-abortion. and with this disconnection, we are reminded of what lincoln taught us.
as a nation, a house divided against itself cannot stand. what we need is a dedication of our efforts to prevail in nurturing the culture of life in defending the unborn. and again ensuring that when history looks upon us, we will be recalled as was said in the book of daniel, the wise will shine brightly like the splendor of the firmament. and those that leave the many to justice will use the stars the forever -- stars forever. may god continued to guard the united states of america. >> i am from the great state of texas. are there any pro-life people here from texas?
you are such an encouragement to us in the fight on the front lines on behalf -- we are fighting along with you. think you for taking this stand on the sanctity of life. the very first pitcher i ever had of my first grandson was a sonogram. i saw that little body inside my daughter-in-law oppose the womb -- daughter-in-law's womb. our lord and god said that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. we must not give up this fight. we cannot give up this fight. we will not give up this fight. this is the most important fight that we are engaged in. thank you for taking a stand and being here for life. god bless you, and god bless america. >> thank you all for being here. i am from the great state of
tennessee, one of the most pro- live conservative state in the union. it was cold when i came down here because i sought to politicians that had both their hands in their own pockets. when i had a real job, my practice within ob/gyn in tennessee where i delivered almost 5000 babies. i want to tell you this. life, and in others, is a precious gift from god. a precious gift from our god. i will tell you that our god that knows us will not continue to bless this nation if we do not stop this abomination called abortion. no doubt about it. i want to thank you all for being here and helping to stop this health care bill that had
the pro-abortion parts in it. from the bottom of my heart, thank you for being here on this very cold day and for standing for life. may god bless each and everyone of you all. -- every one of you all. >> good afternoon, pro-live americans. i am from the great state of ohio, and i represent cincinnati, the birthplace of the right-to-life movement. 39 years ago, dr. jack wilkey was sitting at the table with his wife barbara. she was concerned about the issues of abortion. they said, we have to do something. she said, jack, every child has
the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, born and unborn. he said, barbara, that is the name of our movement, right-to- life. i tell you that because everyone of us has the power to make a difference. the power of one multiplied by hundreds of thousands of view -- you today. here, marching on washington. reminding us that the constitution says that we all have the right to life. thank you. for your courage, your dedication, and most of all, for loving america and loving our lord.
god bless you. god bless the indicted states of america. may god protect the unborn. >> good afternoon. i am from the state of pennsylvania. it is such an honor to join some many champions better here fighting to defend life as we speak -- to defend life. as we speak, abortion has increased since 10 years ago. the abortionists are losing. we stand a gather on this day and every day for those that have no voice. for those whose basic right to be born has been cruelly denied. we stand here today with the principles put forth formally and soundly by the founders of the nation that every american,
born, and yet to be born, has the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. they defend the right to life. thank you for the privilege of marching with you today, and god bless the unborn. >> thank you very much. i am pleased to announce the next delegation. when we began, well over 30 years or so, there was a young man i came to us as a student. now, i have the privilege of introducing to you rabbi levin, leading a delegation of the rabbis today.
>> shalom, pro-life america. god bless you, those who are here. those that see us on tv. those that engage in family year round. you're doing a god's holiest work. saving us from tsunamis and earthquakes, god is not happy about pre-born killing, deviance, and immorality. when the couple gets full flows over, it is like the chernobyl nuclear tragedy spiritually. someone doesn't do their job, and many people suffer from nuclear and spiritual fallout. it is that rubble that we are
joined together to help haiti. that tragedy pales in significance compared to a situation of one million innocent babies eliminated, burned, torn up, cut to pieces each year in god's country, america. not so beautiful. to the pro-aborts that are sending help to haiti, god bless you. open your hearts and minds for how we're selfishly punishing a million of the most innocent amongst us. stop the baby killing today. now. immediately. once and for all.
the congress and the administration, we declared today "don't you dare even think about forcing us, god's people to be co-executioners of his holy innocents." don't you dare. don't you dare. don't you dare. don't you dare. don't you dare. don't you dare include baby killing funds and health care or any other legislation. don't you dare. we will throw you willto hell -- you all the hell out. throw you the hell out. so help us god.
massachusetts will look like a picnic. so to all you out there, we, god's people, like exodus, let our people go. let our babies live. 31 years i have come here. i am almost finished. the baby killing continues. what more can you and i and god and americans do to shut down the killing? i will tell you right now. first, right millions of letters addressed to jsutices -- justices of the supreme court. they legalized abortion on demand. tell them to fix it now.
fix it now. fix it now. fix it right now. we, the american people, that are becoming more pro-lifer as technology shows babise are -- babies are alive in the womb, -- [unintelligible] the selfish liberals are not reproducing. we orthodox jews ring 7-14 children into a family. that is right. god loves it. you can also have another baby. number 3, i'm almost finished. the liberals and new york and new jersey, resoundingly, it shows that if we make noise, we
can be heard and make a difference. what are we doing about abortion? it is time to say enough is enough. there is a legal term called nullification. check this up on the internet. learn these terms. if they are ordered the killing of jews, gypsies, or other undesirables, they can pose themselves between the laws of killing and the defenses of victims and close down the killing centers. here it comes. listen up. a courageous and compassionate god-fearing family loving children, close down the abortion clinics in his state.
if the feds want to send in the national guard to protect the baby killers, the governor will be a hero and the god's people will rally to him. the baby killing industry will be broken. we have more than enough baby killing pharaoh's in power. it u.s. government, wakeup. who will be the first to let our babies grow. god bless. [horns blowing] god bless, and the walls came tumbling down. thank you. [cheers and applause] >> that was epic!
>> when we began the march for life 37 years ago, we want to have a little parade around the capital. we thought that that would stop anyone from doing anything like killing babies. at that time, helping us all the way was one person. we are so pleased to have him with us. today, however, we have more than one monsignor. the roman catholic bishop daniel [unintelligible] chairman of the catholic bishops' committee. >> thank you, nelly. thank you, nelly. thank you very much.
thank you, friends. our souls are lifted up today as we, with the virgin mary, remember that our souls magnify the lord with the gift of life that he has given us. my name as part in alldinardo, -- cardinal dinardo, the archbishop of galveston and houston. it is my happy duty, not only to be here, but also to introduce my fellow bishops that are here at this rally. they are here in solidarity with who we are as people of life. may i mention something personal? i can't help but notice that print -- there is the parrish i started in pittsburgh.
it is my happy to introduce the bishops that our president. i'll begin with the archbishop of philadelphia, cardinals justin rigali. also with us, archbishops joseph kurtz, the archbishop of louisville, kentucky. the archbishop of kansas city and kansas. [cheers and applause] that is a great group from kansas. [cheers and applause] archbishop henry mancel from genetic it -- connecticut.
he seems to have vanished, but we want to welcome him. and the archbishop of washington, the ordinary at this diocese here. we have been shipped paul cokely, from kansas. bishop robert baker from birmingham. bishop john barrett from allentwon, p -- allentown, pennsylvania. bishop daniel from stupenville, ohio. bishop frank duane from florida.
springfield, missouri. across the way, the ship -- the bishop of arlington. bishop kevin rhodes, from fort wayne. and with him today, bishop john darcy, the retired bishop from fort wayne. bishop david from pittsburgh. and bishop phelippe de jesus, the archbishop of florida. is there anyone i missed? everybody here?
>> i am privileged to introduce a young man who was thinking about coming down to the march, and he will be here to introduce a delegation of the eastern orthodox clergy. father john will be here to introduce that delegation. >> thank you, nellie gray. hello, pro-life america. the orthodox church of america has become today a permanent
part of the march for life. thousands of orthodox christians today are with you are an arm until our nation's unjust laws become overturned. joining us today are the members of the holy synod of the orthodox church in america, his eminence, archbishop nathaniel of detroit and the romanian episcopacy. his grace, bishop and gillon of san francisco and the diocese of the west. the diocese of eastern pennsylvania, his grace of
pittsburg and the diocese of western pennsylvania. the bishop elect of the diocese of new york and new jersey. and to address you today, his beatitude joan of, archbishop of washington d.c. and metropolitan of all america and canada. let's give him a warm welcome today. >> may the lord bless you. last year i taught you something. we should reach other with the greeting, glory to jesus christ, and we replied, glory forever. glory to jesus christ.
glory to jesus christ. glory to jesus christ. it is such an important thing for us all to be here, to bear witness to our faith, to bear witness to our love for one another, to bear witness to our love for the unborn, and for all of those who are weak, who were indeed, whose lives are in critical danger. it is eye witness of that love, and only by witness of that love that we are able to overcome the loss and the movements that would undercut the lives of those who are in danger. the children in the womb, the sec, the suffering, the elderly. this is not simply a religious question. we are gathered here as people of faith, catholics and
orthodox, protestant, jews, and people of other faiths, because we are of one mind and one hard when it comes to life. -- one mind and one heart when it comes to life. we also have to bear witness that we are all americans, and that we stand for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness as fundamental rights that are given to us, not simply by our constitution, but by our god. glory forever. we have to bear witness that the right to life is a constitutional right that is given to every human being in this country. this can only be the foundation for the overturning of these
laws that deprive people of the right to live. i also want to mention and acknowledge all of those women here who bear witness that they regret their abortions. as christians, as people of faith, we have to stand not only for the right to life, but to that infinite potential for repentance, for healing, for consolation, for transformation of our lives, and to put forth that message for those who have gone through the hell of abortion, that they can be forgiven, that they can be healed, that they can have hope again. it is only out of desperation,
and only in despair, that a woman could take the life of her child. so let us stand not only as people who are against abortion, but as people who are for life, not only as those who oppose the killing of the innocent, but as those who stand for repentance and forgiveness, because it is through their repentance that people's lives can be changed and healed and brought back to normal. thank you. as or that are christians,ñi we absolutely stand with the right to life, given to us by god. from the moment a child is conceived to the moment we take our last breath, let us give thanks to god that he has shown
us this, but let us also bear this message to our fellow americans that this right to life, given by god, is something also that we have to uphold as citizens of this great country. may god bless you. glory to jesus christ. >> putting together a lot of the administrative work of the march for life falls to all of us volunteers, but we cannot do it ourselves.
one of the local churches and a local pastor who has been so generous in participating and assisting in putting all these activities together is pastor of luke robinson of frederick, maryland. >> thank you so much. god bless america. blessed is a nation whose god is the lord. i would say to you today, we must stand up. one year ago, -- since one year ago, america has been in a fight for is very polite and morals arrival. we have been challenged by some of the most radical and i've got ideas that have ever hit this nation -- radical and on godly ideas that have ever hit this
nation. instead of health care, they have offered us death care. this radical administration and congress chose that the abortion of children was more important than genuine health reform. obama and the members of his political party could have put together a reasonable reform that could have benefited the whole nation, for they control both houses of congress and they also controlled the white house. let america not be deceived. it was their resistance to dropping the funding for the killing of children as why there is no health care for us today. the work secretly behind closed doors, leaving out the american people and some of the members of their own party.
however, in spite of the cover- up, god began to move and revealed to the nation what the culture of death was planning. people began to stand up and say no. uni must stand up and say no all over this country. this country needs our help, and it needs our help right now. they began to stand up all over this country saying no. they said no in virginia, and they defeated the abortionist candidate. they said no in new jersey and they defeated the abortionist candidate. they even set on last tuesday in massachusetts, they said no. by defeating one of the surest proponents of abortion, we must stand up today because tomorrow
may be too late. this administration is supporting policies of the eugenics movement, which says that certain races and people with certain conditions should be eliminated. not even given a chance at life. the facts are out there that the african-american community is under attack. abortion is the number-one killer of our people, and we must stand up now. we need every american to stand up. last year alone, one half million african-american children died. last year alone, over 1 million babies died in this country. the living god cannot tolerate it much longer, but we thank god that there were some people who were willing to stand up and say this thing is wrong in america. american children died at the
hands of abortionist and the culture of death becomes -- someone decided that their lives were not valuable and they were less than human beings. the hispanic population has now been added to the list of undesirables, and they are being targeted for elimination. in houston, texas, a huge, super multimillion-dollar a slaughterhouse for the killing of children has been billed by planned parenthood. it has been billed in the neighborhood -- has been built in the neighborhood of two african-american communities and one hispanic community. they will get the funds from the community. they will kill babies in texas and others to come from other places. they will have the same -- if
you walk through the woods, a tick will get on you. it does not announce that it is there to suck your blood, but it does. it will stay on you as long as you let it stay on you. you will be the host. there is a parasite that has attached itself to the holiness andçó righteousness and a god- fearing people, and we must say we will not tolerate it anymore. we must stand up. we must stand up and remember that it was god who brought us thisñi foar. we must stand up. we must put an end to this madness
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