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tv   Democracy Now  LINKTV  February 17, 2014 8:00am-9:01am PST

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02/17/14 02/17/14 >> from pacifica, this is democracy now! >> a florida jury convicts michael dunn of three counts of attempted murder for opening fire on a car of black teenagers
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but deadlocked on the most serious charge, first-degree murder of jordan davis. chante african-american dead over rap music. 12 of 16 presidents owned slaves and many had slaves in the white house. this is not a history that we were taught, is not a history that is taught on the take about the president, the history of the united states. clarence lusane on the black history of the white house. and former fcc commissioner michael copps on the proposed time warner comcast merger. >> many times over the past year, they approve that. then the competitor comes in and
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says we have to get bigger. it is day after day while consolidation continues and diversity and competition suffers. up.ll that and more coming welcome to democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. jury has convicted michael dunn of three counts of attempted murder for opening fire on a car of unarmed black teenagers over an argument over loud music at a gas station in jacksonville but the jury deadlocked on the count of first-degree murder for the death of jordan davis, calling for the judge to declare a mistrial. mcbathher of davis, lucy , reacted to the verdict. that he will. dunn live the rest of his life with that sense of torment. and i will pray for him and i
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have asked my family to pray for grateful forre so the charges that have been brought against him. we are so grateful for the truth. >> after shooting jordan davis, michael dunn, whose wife fled the scene, went to a hotel and ordered pizza. he never called police. he said he saw michael dunn brandish a shotgun in the car but police never found a gun. the fiancée also testified she never heard him mention anything about a shotgun. we will have more on the case after headlines. the second rou of peace talks aimed at resolving the syrian conflict has ended in gene -- in deadlock in geneva. un special envoy lakhdar brahimi apologized to the syrian people. >> i apologize to the syrian
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.eople their hopes, which were very high, that something would -- the little of what has been achieved in homs gave them hope that maybe this was the beginning of a coming out of this horrible crisis they are in. , because onto them these two rounds, we have not helped them much. >> zainab al-khawaja has been released after years behind bars. protests against the sunni regime have been crushed by martial law and a u.s.-backed invasion of saudi arabian forces. scores of people were arrested friday when police fired
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birdshot and tear gas at demonstrators. tens of thousands of people defy the crackdown to march on saturday. after her release, zainab al-khawaja told journalists that global attention should focus the 3000 otheron political prisoners in bahrain. police in switzerland say the copilot of an ethiopian airlines flight to rome took control of the plane and landed in geneva earlier today in a bid to seek asylum. reportedly copilot locked himself in the copilot when the pilot went to use the bathroom. he could face charges of hot just taking -- hostagetaking.
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in south africa, a dozen miners were rescued and arrted after they became trapped while working illegally in an abandoned gold mine. others refuse to be rescued on fear that they would be arrested. there were reports 200 could still be inside. a new report based on leaks from edward snowden reveal the national security agency played a role in the monitoring of a u.s. law firm that represented the indonesian government in trade disputes with the u.s. according to "the new york they considered its by talks and privileged communications between indonesian officials and the u.s. law firm mayer brown. the report bolsters claims by snowden and others that the nsa
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and its allies conducts buying for economic gains. the report was written by laura poitras and james rison. secretary of state john kerry is in indonesia where he has sought to downplay the reports of spying on officials. indonesians to take action against climate change, calling it perhaps the world's most fearsome weapon of mass distraction. >> president obama and i believe deeply that we do not have time for a meeting anywhere of the flat earth society. indonesia is the third-largest inventor of greenhouse gases after china and the united dates. there has been a spate of u.s.,e weather across the and wear a winter storm killed
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20 people. journalist who was abducted from his home earlier this month said he was tortured. went missing just before he was due to travel to europe to speak out against u.s. drone strikes, one of which killed his brother and son. he was taken captive by up to 20 men. he told al jazeera his captors hung him upside down, hit his feet with a leather strap, and beat him, but he vowed to continue to speak out against drones tracks. mission, i will continue and i will never leave my mission. >> to see our reporting on karim subduction and a report that includes him, you can go to our website
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a new report says the obama administration is planning to launch drone strikes from bases in central asia in case the u.s. is forced to withdraw from afghanistan this year. karzai has so far refused to sign a long-term deal to keep u.s. troops in afghanistan. ability to launch drone strikes would be hindered by the loss of drone bases in afghanistan. the plan to shift further north could involve the use of a new jet powered drone named the avenger. the ugandan president yoweri museveni has indicated he will sign a bill punishing repeated homosexual acts with terms of up to life in prison. president obama has more and --
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more and him that signing of the law could complicate relations with the u.s. back in the united states, students at the university of missouri form a human. to block a sonnet protest by the -- protest from the westboro practice church. hundreds of supporters lined up along the sidewalk near the campus football area to support michael sam. protest organizer kelaney lakers spoke to local news station krcg. >> we are both christians. god is love. what they are doing is hateful. the fact that they are being hateful and that that is a sin, we are also going to show love for them. michael sam is poised to
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become the first homosexual player in the nfl. he meanwhile, ellen page, star of "juno," "inception," and "the celebritythe latest to come out as gay. love people starts with loving ourselves and accepting ourselves. i know many of you have struggled with this, and i draw upon your strength and support in ways that you will never know. and i am here today because i am gay. [applause] >> ellen page, coming out as a lesbian this weekend. volkswagen workers in chattanooga, tennessee have voted against forming a union. wouldited auto workers
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have had its first presence at a foreign-owned factory. outside groups also played a role. americans for tax reform funded a dozen local billboards urging an antiunion vote. journalist to reveal the national security agencies web of spying has been awarded the 2013 george poll awards in journalism. glenn greenwald, laura poitras, ewan macaskill, and barton gellman were among the winners announced on sunday. other winners include matthieu aikins for uncovering convincing evidence that a u.s. army unital formats -- forces killed individuals. is whoquestion really
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else knew about these incidents before and? oneis it possible that level above the chain of command could not have known about war crimes. there were serious evidence about war crimes. if they were not involved in the cover-up, they must have been willfully blind. >> to see the rest of our interview, as well as past interviews with glenn greenwald and laura poitras, you can go to our website, a lawyer who represents snowden was detained while going through the airport at heathrow airport. jesselyn radack was told she was on a and inhibited persons list,
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a list used by the u.s. department of homeland security, to require further vetting of certain passengers. last august, glenn greenwald's partner was detained for nine hours. after the awards were announced, glenn greenwald tweeted, in the u.k. government, this is known warde jolt -- george fulco for excellence in journalism against terrorism. florida jury has convicted michael dunn on three counts of attempted murder for opening fire on a car of unarmed black teenagers at a gas station during an argument over loud rap music. but the jury deadlocked the most serious charge, first-degree murder, of jordan davis, forcing the judge to declare a mistrial on account. dunn shot the vehicle carrying davis and his friends 10 times. he then fled the scene, went to a hotel with his girlfriend, and
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ordered a pizza. citing florida's a stand your ground laws, he said he felt threatened by davis, who was unarmed, but the prosecutor said that they never left their vehicle. couldanalysts say dunn face up to 60 years in jail for the murder of the three others. the trial drew comparisons of the george zimmerman trial, who was found not guilty in the killing of trayvon martin. verdict, the father of davis said that kids should never be collateral damage. >> he was a good kid. there are a lot of good kids out , are, a lot of good africans lot of good grandsons, granddaughters, and they should have a voice. they should not have to live in fear, worry about if someone has a problem with someone else.
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there is no such thing to parents that their child suffered collateral damage. as human beings, we all love our children, our families, and we do not accept a law that allows collateral damage to our family members. we raise them not to fear each other, to be good citizens in america. we expect the law to be behind us and protect us. that is what i want to belong to do, protect us. >> sunday would have been davis his 19th birthday. for more we are joined by ofhael skolnik, editor talk about the significance of this split verdict. it was a hung jury -- a mistrial on the most serious charge --
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could face up to 60 years in prison for attempted murder. hours-plus in the deliberation. it was obvious the jury was confused how they could find them guilty on one charge and not on the other. , the jury cames back with mistrial of murder one, but also found him guilty of attempted murder on three others. michael dunn looks at a minimum of 60 years in prison. there could still be another trial, and there still could be. prosecutororey, the in the case of george zimmerman. >> certainly a confiscated figure in all of this, -- >> to remind the audience, marissa alexander? >> the woman who shot a gun in
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was found guilty of a 20 or sentence. now she will be retried. this is a complicated case because we wl see another trial in a few weeks, relive what we have had to relive in trial.davis' tr gun, jordan davis had a that defendant would have never left the scene. gun, hen davis had a would've called the police. if he was truly acting in self-defense, he would not have been running from everybody, he would not have lied to the
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police, he would not have changed his story. >> during his testimony, michael dunn admitted he shot jonathan davis, saying he feared for his life. >> i am paying attention to what they are saying. even more elevated voice, i hear, i should -- he said he was going to kill me. after he opened the door, he looked at me and said, you are dead. i became even more fearful at that point. over here is my glove box. , andlooking out the window i said, you are not going to kill me, you son of a -- >> do you recall how many times you shot? >> i do not. >> explained the sequence that is not disputed of what happened
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after he shot into the car. >> there is no dispute that michael dunn shot into the car. the carnd drove backwards and then try to drive away as michael dunn was shooting. out of the vehicle and shoots at the car as it is driving away. away, themen get girlfriend of michael dunn comes out of the convenience store. they get in the car and drive to a hotel three miles away, spent a night at the hotel, order pizza, watch a movie, drink rum and coke, and leave the gun in the car. thats so afraid, he says, he would be found, so he left a gun in the car. the next morning he drove home to satellite beach. michael dunn claims he called his neighbor, who was in the law enforcement.
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records show that he did not call him, but his neighbor called him to hang out. the gas station wrote down the license plate and went to michael dunn's home and then brought him out. the issue of race was largely ignored in the trial. dunn wrote to family members that he thinks the justice system is unfair and biased to african-americans. he wrote -- but that was never brought up in court. >> there is great sensitivity to bring up race in the zimmerman case and in this case, we have to ask questions why. are notthe south, they ready to talk about these issues
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. i think the state prosecution is concerned to bring it up. these statements and michael dunn's actions show that he was a threat. that he willthing serve at least 60 years in prison. of these statements, it is clear he is a threat. >> the attorney for jordan davis's family released a video formerael dunn's neighbor. he said he had a history of violent behavior and cocaine use and insurance fraud and even bragged about once putting a hit out on someone. his first wife said that he had held a gun to her head and threatened to kill her. this is an interview of his former neighbor. >> he acted like he was smarter than everyone else. allowinghat not only -- underling but also quite
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amusing. he was not nearly as intelligent as he thought he was. he knew about computers but he did not appear to know a lot about interpersonal relationships and how to get along with people. that was just my perception. r where he was light and friendly and would laugh, but if you disagreed with him, he would get boisterous, try to be overbearing, and try to intimidate people with his size and voice. he appeared to me to be very selfish. there was not much that he would not do to get what he wanted. , more ofrmer neighbor the interview. >> there are entirely too many people in this country getting needlessly killed. people should never ever get their hands on guns. michael dunn is one of those people. i believe that if he had been
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subjected to some kind of psychological evaluation, done a background investigation on him, ,is propensity to be violent possibly, he would have never gotten his hands on a weapon. there were several times when he made a comment -- i cannot wait for someone to try something on me when i have my gun. i am the type of person, that is the last thing i would want to be contemplating. i do not want to have a confrontation with someone with a gun. they areo does, predisposed, in my opinion, to kill someone. if you are looking for a confrontation because you have a gun, there is no question in my mind, people are looking for problems when they have a gun, someday they will find you. when i heard about this incident with michael dunn, i said there
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you go, i knew it. sooner or later he will kill somebody. i said that to my wife and daughter. sooner or later this guy will kill somebody. he thinks a gun makes him safe and all-powerful. >> that was charles hendricks, the former next-door neighbor of michael dunn. michael skolnik, they never saw this video and they never saw the letter that dunn wrote from jail. on the witness list, he was in the area of the country that had hit by a huge snowstorm, so there was the issue of travel, but also much of what he said was hearsay and not admissible in court, so i'm not sure how much of what he said would be admissible. that is part of why he was not called to the witness stand. >> to explain the scene at the gas station when michael dunn was there, his girlfriend goes
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inside to buy stock in the convenience store. the teenagers are in the next car. they are in a car playing music. and a half a foot away. so the idea that he got out and approached michael dunn with a gun seems absurd and physically enabled to do that because the cars were so close. michael dunn basically shot point-blank into the other car. they get into a verbal comments -- conversation, the kids do not get out of their vehicle, and michael dunn says you do not talk to me like that, and then shoots three times. one of the things that is important about the interview with mr. hendricks, the significance of him leaving the scene, not him going into a store saying a kid with a gun was about to shoot at me, someone call the cops. if he did not leave the scene,
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would he have been drug tested, alcohol tested? he admitted to having drinks at the wedding where he just came from, admitted to using cocaine in the past, but was he high? did he sober up at the hotel? >> i want to turn to an article from ta-nehisi coates from the atlantic called "on the killing of jordan davis by michael dunn ." --the article, he writes your response? is true. i think it i spent a lot of time with lucy
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and ryan over the past five days. clip, saw in the opening lucy, jordan's mother, praying for michael dunn. we prayed for the family members and the young man who was shot. certainly, we are upset over this verdict, but there were people in the jury room who are fighting for jordan davis. jury members fighting for jordan davis. the three men who were shot at, they are lucky to be alive, and they also have justice. >> how do you know that michael dunn will be sentenced to at least 60 years in prison? minimumpted murder is a of 20 years. he got three of them convicted and they had to be served consecutively. and it could go to life. he also was convicted of shooting a bullet into a moving vehicle. that is a 15-your charge.
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is 47 years old. he will die in prison. ofmichael skolnik, head, thank you. also on the board of directors of the trayvon davis -- martin foundation. let's end with lucy mcbath, father of jordan davis. that is sad for mr. dunn he will live the rest of his life in that sense of torment, id i will pray for him, and will ask my family to pray for for but we are so grateful the charges that have been brought against him. we are so grateful for the truth. >> that was lucy mcbath, the mother of jordan davis.
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this is democracy now!,, the war and peace report. when we come back, on this presidents' day, we look at the black history of the white house. [♪] music break
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>> democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. the country marks presidents' day, we turn to an aspect of u.s. history often missed. the complicity of u.s. presidents with slavery. the first person of african descent to enter the white house was likely a slave.
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once held, d.c. markets where human beings were sold. mosts built some of the famous landmarks, including philadelphia's independence hall, james madison's montpelier . last week, president obama mentioned the role of slaves in building one specific landmark, thomas jefferson's plantation estate in charlottesville, virginia. with was touring the home french president francois hollande. this is what he had to say about monticello. a this also represents complicated history of the united states. we just visited downstairs where we know that slaves helped to build this magnificent structure and the complex relations with the jeffersons, the drafter of the declaration of independence, had with slavery.
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it is a reminder for both of us that we will continue to fight on the behalf of the rights of all peoples, something that i know france has always been committed to and we are committed to as well. >> president obama speaking last week. we are joined by clarence lusane, who has documented history of race in the white house. his most recent article is "missing from presidents day: the people they enslaved." he writes -- clarence lusane is a member of african-american affairs. history ofthis slavery and u.s. presidents. >> i am glad you pointed out
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that president obama, when he went to jefferson's home pointed out the slave history there. it is also important to note that the most iconic building in the u.s., the one that represents the country to the world, the white house, was also a place where slavery existed. not only that, it was built by slaves. none of that has been publicly acknowledged. there are over a million people that visit the white house every doors, come to meetings, and you can never have a sense of that important history. that is critical because a presidents' day should be a reflection, where we really try to get a better sense of the country's history. part of that history, part of , is resonates to this day that significantly, before the
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civil war, nearly every u.s. president was a slave owner. that means they were compromised on the issue of slavery, and that had repercussions to history. it is important to have that acknowledgment. we grow up and go to school and have history class, but none of that history is told to us. black history of u.s. presidents, as you call it. houselooking at the white , and i use that as the prism to look at this longer history that basically lead up to president obama. one of the things we find missing is the voices of people, particularly african-americans, who were enslaved during that long history. that was critical because when you think about george munro, all madison,
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of those early presidents who wrote the declaration of independence, the constitution, the articles of confederation, all of these founding documents that extol the principles of democracy, liberty, equality, they were living a contradiction. everyday of their life, every moment of their life is surrounded by people who were enslaved. of some of, because the historic records that were kept, we now know who some of those people were. george washington, when he was president, in philadelphia, had at least nine individuals with him who were enslaved. was a young woman who was about 22 who escaped. this was in 1796. she found out martha washington was planning to give her away as a wedding gift.
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with the freect black population in philadelphia and was able to escape. this is remarkable because we are talking about a young woman who traveled basically nowhere by herself, escaped him the most powerful person on the planet pretty much. certainly the most powerful in the united states. her story is important because heroutlived washington, to be 80's. you also had hercules, washington's cook, who outlived him. who we wereople never taught about all of these in school. there were others who have tried to reenter the historic
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narrative of these individuals. if you really want to understand the politics of george washington or thomas jefferson or the other presidents, it is important. >> tell us about paula jennings. >> another fascinating character. he was enslaved to james and dolly madison. he was the first individual to write about working in the white house. memoir in the late 1860's that talked about the time when he was in the white house. he was there in 1814, when the british were literally burning down the city, was part of the contingent of folks attempting to get materials out of the white house and preserve them before the british came. he was supposed to be freed when james madison died, but dolly madison basically reneged on the
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deal. it took him a few years to buy his freedom, which he eventually did. dollyn came to help madison. she came on hard times, was not wealthy, was not part of the social elite. when she fell on hard times and her family and friends abandoned her, jennings would bring her food and money and look after her. important about paul jennings -- was that he was central to the largest attempt of escaping slavery in washington, d.c., this happened in 1848. for a number of reasons, the attempt failed, but jennings was being a part of it. it was only after his death that it was revealed that he played a
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critical role in that. you had these individuals who were enslaved to presidents, who had fascinating stories and fascinating lives that we should know about. they are also a part of the history of the white house, history of the presidency. >> i want to play a clip from about thelincoln," fight to end slavery. daniel day-lewis plays abraham lincoln, followed by the voices of thaddeus stevens and mary todd lincoln. stepped out upon the world stage with the fate of human dignity in our hands. asked usm lincoln has to work with him to accomplish
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the death of slavery. that was an excerpt of "lincoln." clarence lusane, talk about the lincoln and slavery. >> the lincoln administration was a turning point in terms of the history of the relationship between african-americans and the white house. it was in his tenure that the first meeting took place between a u.s. president and leaders of the black community. this happened in 1862, i believe. up until that point, although african-americans, particularly free african-americans in the north, has been organized and those policy issues around slavery, they simply had no access to the white house or to policymakers. lincoln opened up some of that. part of what moved lincoln from
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being not just anti-slavery, but that you hadnizing to eliminate slavery, that abolition was the only path from hisin part, came discussions with black leaders. not only church leaders but people like frederick douglass. alsois in the film, but conversations with elizabeth cech lee. she is the woman who is alstom -- often seen with mary lincoln. the film is a little bit disingenuous in that you can think that maybe she was a servant, but she was an independent business woman who had basically become best friends with mary lincoln, but she also spent a great deal of time at the white house having discussions with abraham lincoln about race, slavery, the future of the country. her story is important to be was part of ahe
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contingent of african-americans who is thought to have influence the presidency, addressed issues that needed to be dealt with. the movie does not quite take you there to show you that side of the people who influenced lincoln, but it is an important part of understanding what happened in the civil war and how the lincoln got to the point where he said the only way out of this adulation is for slavery to end. then that meeting in 1852, lincoln meets with a small delegation of black leaders, clergy. >> right. at that point, lincoln had already decided to issue the emancipation proclamation. there was some debate about which date to issue it on, but was already moving in a position
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where he saw the country's future as a future without slavery. these leaders that he met with were mostly people tied to the black church community, but people who also had ties to abolitionists, people who were active in the other issues around the country. point, there has been a considerable amount of effort on the part of african-americans to negotiate and meet with and lobby not only in congress but the president himself. talk about these iconic buildings, structures, that we all go to in washington, d.c. to honor the country. who built them? >> this is really important because i think there is a general sense that washington owned slaves, jefferson owned
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slaves, but there is a general ignorance about the role of people who were enslaved in actually building the nation's capital. in 1790, after the country was founded, the congress passed legislation to build a capital. washington, d.c. did not exist. there was a decision, from land that was taken from virginia and maryland, would become the nation's capital. this is why washington spent all of his presidency either in new york or pennsylvania. to build washington, d.c., you needed labor. george washington, who was more or less in charge, initially wanted labor to come to europe. it was difficult to get people to come over on these harsh trips to work in basically a jungle. so they relied on enslaved labor, which meant cutting down trees, moving rocks, digging holes, all of the heart labor
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that had to be done to literally clear the area. but it also included skilled labor, carpenters, pastors. -- plasteres. we know that at the white house and the capital, there were at least five highly skilled carpenters that work for years to build those buildings. this needs to be acknowledged. con --ects the ongoing contradiction, which president obama talked about with president along, about the principles of equality and democracy, and the reality of slavery. in the capitol a few years ago, there were two flax put up to acknowledge the people who were enslavedho built the capital. one on the house side, one on the senate side of the rotunda. in philadelphia, at civilian where the liberty bell exists,
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that was built over the old house, the land where george washington lived when he was president. there is also a plaque there that acknowledged the people who were enslaved to washington during his presidency. what we do not have yet, and it may have been, is something in the white house with that kind of acknowledgment. >> final comment about what you think we should understand on this presidents' day? do you write about teddy roosevelt. you write about teddy roosevelt. long and rich history of african-americans in the white house before president obama. all of that tells us a great deal about the current situation we face where we continue to see you disparities and discrimination pretty much
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across the board. the story you did earlier about the shooting in florida, for example, i think, in part, reflects an unawareness of this history and the degree to which this country has still not acknowledged or reconciled this past. years ago i went with students to rwanda and we visited a number of memorials. it became so clear to me the degree to which the country technologists its past in an honest and straightforward way goes a long way to healing and reconciliation. give you all the justice that you need, but it gives you the first steps, the recognition of your history becomes important. thanks so much for being with us. we will link to your piece, "missing from presidents day: at people they enslaved"
8:49 am this is democracy now!,, the war and peace report. back in a minute. [♪] music break
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>> in the studio today on this presidents' day, indie kids. we end the show with the news that the two largest cable providers plan to merge. comcast has announced plans to purchase time warner cable for $45 billion and stock.
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comcastover would allow to have a virtual monopoly in 19 of 20 markets. consumer groups will oppose the deal. --e press writes comcast ceo brian roberts praised the deal as procompetitive and proconsumer. we spent a lot of time thinking about it. it is a special transaction for time warner cable and comcast. the deal is procompetitive, proconsumer, we will be able to bring better products, faster on-demand, tv everywhere, on a national platform that is special. we are optimistic we can get it
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approved. >> for more, we go to washington, d.c., where we are joined by michael copps. now !e back to democracy it is still a possible merger, still not a done deal. >> great to be with you again. this is such a far-reaching deal, it should be dead on gets to the it department of justice and federal communications commission. this is the whole shooting match. itis broadband, broadcast, is content, distribution. it is medium and the message. it would confirm control over our systems that no company should have.
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where prices are going up and competition is going down. comcast just about nbc universal. explain how this works. well, it works through a combination of private sector consolidation that we have seen with this long cycle of approvals by the federal communications commission and the department of justice, blessillllllng all of e deals. comcast just gone through absorbing nbc universal last year, and now they have enough money to go out and buy the second-largest cable company in the united states of america. they might think it is good, and it is good for business, but what this amounts to really is -ization of the internet. if we are so confident in the internet to open the doors of
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opportunity to everyone, we will allow this all to be controlled by a few gatekeepers who control the distribution and content and can block websites. we are doing irreparable damage to the opportunity and potential of broadband and internet. >> analysts predict comcast will launch a lobbying blitz prior to when it one approval to merge with nbc universal. a news website has reported that two officials who oversee antitrust enforcement have close ties to comcast. the head of the justice department's antitrust division william baer represented nbc in their merger with comcast, and maureen wall house and provided legal counsel to comcast before joining the commission. >> you do not need an analyst or
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for that lobbying team. the wheelbarrow is full of money, legions of lobbyists are at work on this. our society right now is controlled more by money than i -- every other area since the gilded age of the 19th century. to realize is there will never be democracy now until we have media democracy now and we will not get the media democracy on until we put the brakes this mindless consolidation we have been going through for the past 20 years, and put the federal communications commission back in the business of protecting the public interest. different from other mergers because these are media organizations, so, yes, they are hiring all the powerful lobbyist, but they have networks.
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day it wasc the announced, they were hailing it from top to bottom. of course, they will all be employed. >> this is content and distribution. this is the john d rockefeller recipe for monopoly control. when you are controlling the programs, designing the programs, and distributing them, or deciding whether they would not be distributed, when you have the power to block a website or to block democracy now, you're in control of the civic dialogue of this country. we have already gone to dangerous places with the civic dialogue in our country and can we do not have the news and information we used to have, we do not have the journalism we used to have, and a lot of that is because of this consolidation withoutfcc being absent leave from its public interest oversight capacity. this would be a good test to see if the new fcc can really begin to represent the common good.
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>> this is democratic senator al franken. they were standing outside inexplicably on a cold thursday. he said comcast already failed rules in itsh purchase of nbc universal. >> there is a thing called neighborhooding. cnn, msnbc, fox news, all near each other. they were supposed to put bloomberg in the same neighborhood, but because bloomberg competes with cnbc, a financial news network, comcast did not comply with that. they finally had to be ordered to do that. michael copps, your response? we only have 45 seconds, but also talk about the current fcc
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law to require sponsorship disclosure of political ads. >> this is really important. congress will not pass any act asking us to perform the role of money in politics. they're rolled out at the federal communications commission since the 1920's on the sponsorship of identification laws require double date who pays for the ads. when you see an ad says -- that says brought to you by citizens of purple waves of majesty and amber waves of grain, you have no idea who is bringing you the ad. section 317 should be employed to the man the names of the people behind the ad. the fcc could do that themselves. they could update the rules that have been on the books for ages. to have someegin political money reform in this country. we can shine some sunshine on
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who is sponsoring the ads. >> michael copps, thank you for being with us. he was the seventh longest serving fcc commissioner in agency history. that doesn't for the show.
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