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tv   The Week With Joshua Johnson  MSNBC  June 19, 2021 9:00pm-10:00pm PDT

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mother, who is 92 years old, could get covid and survive it and her son didn't. that was nbc's priscilla thompson reporting. it is the top of the hour and it is good to be with you you are watching a juneteenth celebration in galveston, texas. the bill to make it a federal holiday passed with strong support as being celebrated there. despite 14 house republicans voting against it. we will dig into the politics in just a moment. also, the latest vaccination numbers suggest we will fail president biden's vaccination goal even as many americans readjust to normal life. and we'll get into the controversy over skin color in the new movie musical "in the heights." what does it say about representation in hollywood? from nbc news world headquarters in new york, i'm joshua johnson. welcome to "the week."
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on june 19th, 1865, union soldiers informed slaves in galveston, texas, that they were free. they were among the last ones to get the news. this was two months after the confederacy had surrendered and more than two years after the emancipation proclamation. juneteenth is a reminder that our history is full of both progress and pain, progress usually takes a long time but its time does come. i will have more to say about this later in the hour. on thursday president biden signed into law a new federal holiday recognizing juneteenth. he emphasized the importance of confronting the difficult moments in our history. >> great nations don't ignore their most painful moments. great nations don't ignore their most painful moments. they don't ignore them, they embrace them. >> the house voted
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overwhelmingly in favor of the bill. 14 republican members voted against it. the senate bill passed by june unanimous consent, meaning if someone objects, it passes without having a formal vote. republican ron johnson dropped his objection to the bill. he had blocked it in the past. still, he expressed some reservations. >> i support celebrating the emancipation of the slaves. just didn't really understand why the only way to do that is to give 2 million federal health care workers at a cost of $6 million a year a day off, but apparently the rest of congress wants to do that, so i won't stand in the way. >> gop senator john cornyn of texas had a different take. remember, texas is where the events of juneteenth happened. senator cornyn cosponsored the legislation. he said it was in hopes of the holiday bringing people together. >> i know that juneteenth has been celebrated within the african-american community
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around the country, in texas and elsewhere, but, frankly, this is something i think all americans can celebrate. >> we have so much to talk about with our panel. alonzo bodden is a comedian. host of the podcast, "who's paying attention." cristela alonzo is host of a podcast. philip bump is neither a comedian nor a podcast host but he is a national correspondent for "the washington post". he has been writing about juneteenth this week, so we decided to let him hang around. good to see the three of you tonight. alonso, let me start with you and your thoughts on juneteenth, particularly because of the impact of pop culture in building awareness for what juneteenth even is, including on shows like "atlanta" and "black-ish". take a look at some of the ways that juneteenth has been represented on those shows. watch. >> if we want to honor the end of slavery, then we should celebrate juneteenth. >> wait, that's what juneteenth is? >> we don't celebrate the end of
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slavery but you wake us up early e on cyber monday? you are a bad black person. >> oh, happy juneteenth. oh, where is craig? >> happy freedom day! welcome. >> alonzo, what do you make of juneteenth getting federal recognition now? >> first, let me say thanks for having me on this show. it is pronounced boden. >> i beg your pardon. i'm sorry. i can roll my "r" for cristela. i'm a bad black person. i'm sorry. go ahead. >> we can't have black versus black on juneteenth. >> not today. >> we will just jump over it. the jokes they did on the show, that's the problem. a lot of people had no idea what juneteenth was, is, what it meant, et cetera. so just making it a holiday is great because now people have to say, oh, what is it? more importantly, with what's going on with places trying to deny education, you know,
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critical race theory, the true history of slavery, et cetera, et cetera, to have this holiday kind of puts them on the spot in the sense of, well, you have to say it now, don't you. you have to admit it happened, don't you? because there's a holiday based on it. now, this obviously isn't the solution to all the problems of black people and race and society, but it is a step. it is a step in the right direction and it is a step toward awareness. i think awareness is great. you know, we have things like the tulsa massacre. i was just talking with a friend about that. we didn't learn anything about that in school. i mean a lot of this isn't taught in ordinary school curriculum. so if we're raising the awareness, i think that's fantastic. >> i'm glad you brought up critical race theory because, philip bump, that's what you were writing about in "the washington post" this week, about some of the incongruity in terms of opposition to critical race theory, this idea that racism is systemic in america and that we have to understand what's happening today in light of what's happened in the past.
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the pushback to that, but the embrace of juneteenth, which is all about understanding what happened in the past. >> yeah, i mean i think it is first of all really important when we talk about critical race theory in the context of this sort of political debate we do air quotes. while what is being discussed isn't critical race theory as a theoretical academic study, it is really this term being used to apply to any sort of education or discussion about race in a lot of the context. i think what we saw happen here, and it seems in congress, it certainly seems in congress we have these republicans who are quick to approve juneteenth but at the same time are pushing back on what they frame as being critical race theory. but in a sense, it makes a lot of sense why they're doing that. you know, it is sort of akin to, as i said in the piece, it is akin to the way the response that we have now to martin luther king's famous speech from lincoln memorial, the "i have a dream" speech. it is a shorthand for judge
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people by character, not by the color of their skin. we solved racism, you don't see guys walking around in hoods anymore, it is all fixed. we are agreeing slavery is bad, everything is cool moving forward, now we don't need to talk about things like racism being systemic and an integrated part of a lot of what is going on in america anymore today. i think there is that same impulse to take this as, we solved slavery and racism, can we stop talking about it now. which is not the intent. >> i love your thoughts about this particular because you are a texan, the events of juneteenth took place in texas. texas was the first state to have an official commemoration of that emancipation. it also had a confederates hero day it agreed to keep as a condition of having that commemoration, but whatever. what is your sense of the impact of making this a federal holiday, particularly as a texan?
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>> well, a couple of things. first of all, look, the thing about juneteenth is that what we do in this country is that we really do a great job of trivializing holidays. this is one of those holidays we need to make sure we don't do. in regards to critical race theory, i want to say we can't celebrate a holiday unless we backtrack and learn why it exists. then juneteenth will have the same appeal as "talk like a pirate" day, where it just exists but we don't know why we have it. i being a texan, being a latina, can attest to the fact if we don't take the time to teach people what the holiday is about, people can easily commercialize it, they can mix it up with cinco de mayo. everybody thinks that is the day mexico got its independence, but it was actually -- they won a battle like in puebla. they won one battle. the independence day for mexico isn't until september. it is that information that we have to give. for me as a texan, i think it is
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fantastic that we actually celebrate something that was so momentous, so historical because, honestly, people might not be comfortable accepting that racism isn't solved yet, but let me tell you one thing. as a brown woman living in the united states, oh, it is not comfortable when i experience it. >> yeah. >> so i mean to me, like this is something that we have to deal with. i think that this is a step in the right place, you know, but, honestly, hey, man, i hope it doesn't become a holiday where we sell mattresses at a discount or what have you and then years from now we don't know why we're doing it. >> i hear you on that. we just saw some video of juneteenth celebrations around the country. i hear you in terms of not trivializing it. i think probably some people in the audience when you mentioned cinco de mayo they're thinking, what did i do in may and they're feeling convict, which is good. better to hear from a friend than someone else. alonzo, what about that, in terms of the value we put on the holiday? senator ron johnson, who we mentioned at the top of the hour in terms of his opposition to
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making it a federal holiday, was reportedly booed at a juneteenth celebration in milwaukee. we mention he argued we didn't need to give federal workers another day off. what do you make of that in terms of the way that we actually commemorate juneteenth? >> well, i think someone like him, like that's the dog whistle, right. that's the, okay, i'm going to go along with it but i don't like it, to his constituents who just don't like the idea of a holiday that has to do with black history. even more importantly, has a negative connotation toward white people in this country. they have to understand that just because something is pro-black, it's not necessarily anti-white. it is not an attack on you. it is a celebration of our freedom. what a huge thing to celebrate, and he still has to put in that little "well, i don't know about spending $600 million." the government spends $600
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million like we spend 20 bucks at a store or something. that's not going to break the u.s. government. it was just his dog whistle. i don't even like giving too much power or press to the negativity. listen, this is a celebration we need. and as was said, people need to know why we're celebrating and we need to enjoy this. there will be the commercialism, right, because it is america. trust me, somewhere there will be a white sale on juneteenth. let's be honest, it is going to happen. >> oh, of all sales to have on juneteenth, a white one? ugh, i don't know. >> oh, yeah, they already did it for martin luther king's birthday. they will do it for juneteenth. >> no, no. >> but so what? let them do whatever they want. i don't mind them being mad as long as we're moving forward. there are certain groups that if they're angry, that tells me we are headed in the right direction. so if some republican senator from washington is mad about juneteenth, then i'm like, all
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right, that's a good thing. we are headed the right way. >> i feel like a juneteenth white sale is like a key and peele sketch that never got shot. i just feel -- oh, i don't know. because now i have to do the rest of this segment and not write that sketch in my head as i'm talking to you because that's the way my brain works. >> i'm sorry i planted that. >> see, my job gets harder and harder. philip, i do take alonzo's point in terms of the politics of this and sort of elevating the positive. what is your sense of the politics behind this move? this wasn't instantaneous in the scheme of things, but it seemed like once the stars aligned to make this holiday a federal holiday, it happened right now. it happened so fast that, you know, it happened on a thursday, the holiday was the very next day. >> yeah, no, i mean it very much came out of the blue. i think it is important to remember though that this is sufficiently noncontroversial that last year when donald trump
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was president and this was, you know, as all the protests were happening in the immediate aftermath of george floyd's death that donald trump actually played footsie with this idea, too. donald trump obviously is -- well, a lot of his outreach to the african-american community, shall we say, was somewhat cynical and predicated on sort of doing what he could to build up as much support as he possibly could. so, you know, this was sort of generally seen as something which wasn't really going to cause a lot of friction and, you know, therefore when it was reintroduced this year people said, okay, i think we move forward with it. but to the point that was just made, i took my kids to a little festival outside of new york city today. you know, it was like at a firemen's, it was a firemen's festival and there were a lot of blue lives matter flags and they actually stopped the program and said, we want to recognize this is juneteenth and this is what happened in texas and the end of slavery and that's wonderful, blah blah blah. and there's no way a year or two ago that would have been part of this program. but there is value in that. in this place, which is not particularly liberal, there is
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still this commentary about this is what happened, this is why we celebrate the day, which you wouldn't have seen otherwise. i think it is worth pointing out that value as well. >> one thing that i should mention before we have to break, cristela, one last thing i would ask, just briefly whether you have experienced a juneteenth celebration in texas and what your memories are of observing it before we have to pause? >> no. let me tell you, just tell you, the education system in texas, i barely found out i was mexican when i was 17. i mean that's how slow the system works down there. that's why we have a lot of catching up to do and i'm so excited for the chance that people can actually have this as a holiday and be able to google what it is because sometimes the internet has to do the jobs that the public school systems won't. >> we need to pause for just a minute. i just want to note we are following a story out of south florida that we are working to confirm. some of the details on our station wtvj is beginning to
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report this out. as we are talking about juneteenth, it seems there's been an incident related to a pride event near ft. lauderdale. we are working to confirm reports there have been people who have been hit by a truck at the stonewall pride parade in wilton manors, which is an island community that is just north of the city of ft. lauderdale. reportedly there was someone in a white pickup truck at the stonewall pride parade and festival, which happens on wilton drive, kind of the main drag that runs through wilton manors. as the event was kicking off in this wilton manors neighborhood on saturday night. this information comes to us partly from dean trantalis, the mayor of ft. lauderdale, the neighboring city. he is also an attorney who has a law firm in wilton manor, so he has been involved in that community for a very long time. the mayor says that he saw the incident happen. we are working to confirm some details about exactly where it
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occurred. it seems to have happened basically in the area right where ft. lauderdale becomes wilton manors, near ft. lauderdale high school on northeast 4th avenue. one of our reporters from nbc 6 is a co-grand marshal for the parade and confirmed that the incident occurred. again, we are working to confirm some reports of the casualties involved when a pickup truck hit people at the stonewall pride parade and neville wilton manors, which is a very large gay community that borders ft. lauderdale, kind of one of the centers of south florida's lgbtqia communities, which was a community that gentrified over the years, ran into disrepair and one of those communities that gay people came in, moved into, spruced up and turned around, that has made it a hub for the lgbtq community in south florida. we are still working to get more information on this. as we have more, if we get more pictures, if we confirm more details of this we will certainly turn it around for
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you. for now, everyone, please stick around. we will keep working on putting this story together. we will continue our panel conversation when we come back. among other things we want to discuss is the hotly anticipated movie musical "in the heights." critics praised it at first. now some are questioning its casting. we will talk about why its creators responded to accusations of colorism. also returning to normal with a new perspective. how different will life after covid feel than before the pandemic? we will get to all of that and keep following this breaking story after richard lui gets us the headlines. hey, richard. >> some of the stories we're watching this hour, three people died saturday in a collision between a bus and suv in georgetown county, south carolina. the transit bus was carrying 35 people including the driver. two passengers in the suv and one on board the bus died. the city of memphis, tennessee, is removing confederate artifacts from public spaces. the remains of confederate general and ku klux klan nathan bedford forest will be relocated to a museum. a large statue was removed from
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the city center in 2017. champ, the biden family dog for 13 years, has died. the german shepherd was rescued as a puppy by the bidens in 2008. in a statement the bidens said, quote, we love our sweet, good boy and will miss him always. more of "the week" with joshua johnson after the break. r the b. hot dog or... chicken? only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪ stay restless, with the icon that does the same. the rx crafted by lexus. lease the 2021 rx 350 for $449 a month for 36 months. experience amazing at your lexus dealer.
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we are following breaking news out of south florida just outside ft. lauderdale. one person is reportedly dead after two people were run over at an lgbt pride event in wilton manors, florida, just outside ft. lauderdale. the stonewall pride parade and festival was just starting out when we are told that a vehicle struck two people at the beginning of the parade. one is reportedly dead, but we are working to independently confirm the number of fatalities and injuries. as you can imagine, the parade has been put on hold. the police are on the scene. wilton manor, for those of you not familiar with south florida, is sort of the hub or one of the
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main hubs of the lgbtqia community in south florida. wilton manors is one of those areas where over time gay families and gay residents moved, fixed up the houses, rebuilt the tourist economy there, built a business base, and now it is one of the most thriving business and cultural districts in all of south florida. ft. lauderdale's mayor, dean trantalis, has confirmed what happened. we are still working on turning around some video of the scene. we are told there may be a press conference soon. still waiting on confirmation of that. again, we are working to independently confirm reports at least one person has been killed by being struck by a vehicle at the beginning of an lgbt pride celebration in south florida in wilton manors which is just outside ft. lauderdale. we will keep an eye on that. if there is a news conference, we will bring it to you, turn it around as quickly as we can. i will get you more updates as fast as we can confirm the details. for now, let's move on and talk about some controversy
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surrounding the new movie musical "in the heights." it tells the story of a vibrant latino community in new york city's washington heights neighborhood. but the filmmakers responded to criticism over a lack of representation of darker-skinned actors among the leading roles. the musical's creator lin-manuel miranda accepted the criticism writing in part, quote, in trying to paint a mosaic of this community, we fell short. i'm truly sorry, unquote. now, racism and colorism are nothing new in hollywood. black actresses were marginalized pretty much from the beginning, largely because of their skin tone. hattie mcdaniel on the right side of your screen was the first black person to win an oscar. she only really got to play servants. lena horn was able to turn down such demeaning roles simply because her skin was lighter. let's bring back the panel, alonzo bodden, cristela. and philip bump. chris tell la, what do you make
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of the controversy surrounding "in the heights"? >> first of all, i would like to say i knew you would go to me t the heights"? >> first of all, i would like to say i knew you would go to me first. >> sorry. >> no, i knew it. look, i love lin-manuel, i love his family. i think it's a real discussion we have to have. first of all, we need better representation in general. but i will say "in the heights" is a specific example where it is based on a specific neighborhood. so when you are trying to tell the story of a neighborhood, it has to accurately represent the neighborhood, meaning just demographically. you know, the people used -- you know, people still make comments about how the show "friends" didn't have any people of color despite it being a show set in new york city, you know. so i think a lot of that with "in the heights" is about authenticity. i think that also though, look, we got to say it, you know? you know, the hierarchy, there's
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a hierarchy people don't talk about when it comes to like the totem pole. i mean i experienced that growing up watching television in mexico, you know, the darker skin, the mexicans, you know, the more indigenous, they would have like the more simple jobs. they were the comic relief. they were trophy, and the lighter skin would always get to be lawyers and architects. >> yeah. >> so, you know, this is a very legitimate conversation to have. i think that we can do better. i got to tell you that as a first generation mexican-american in the united states, i didn't know that afro-latinos existed until i was an adult. the first one that i specifically knew of was gina torres. for me, that shows me that in my community i don't know my community. that makes me embarrassed because -- but i also have to say it is because i didn't even know -- i didn't even know the group existed. that's because we don't have the representation.
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see, the thing is that with latino projects, we try to put so much on it, right? people say, this is a latino story. you are always going to disappoint people. >> right. >> the thing is you have to say, "this is my story, this is my journey." we can do better and we will do better by being able to call out these -- the lack of everything and having a real conversation. >> well -- >> i'm glad lin-manuel apologized. >> i want to get to that in the way creators tell their story. there's been mixed reaction to the mixed reaction. bill maher on his show suggested lin miranda could stop apologizing. what do you make of the way it happened, there was a backlash from people that felt directly affected by the lack of skin tone diversity and that prompted a direct response from lin-manuel.
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what do you make of the way it went down? >> first, i think it is a big jump with bill maher to say this is why people hate democrats. there might be other things involved other than the colorism controversy. this story is interesting to me because my father is from honduras. so technically i am -- i guess i am an afro latino or black latino. my father came to the united states at a time when you lost your culture, and he just kind of blended in with black culture and we were raised as black kids in a black neighborhood. we didn't -- you know, i wish we had been bilingual, et cetera, et cetera, but it was a different time. things were done differently. but here's the thing. i don't think lin-manuel did this intentional, but he should be aware and everyone should be aware that no community is homogenous, right, especially not in new york as was said.
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i mean i grew up in new york, and one of the great things about growing up in new york is you see everyone. you know, when i moved to l.a., there was an assumption that if you were latin or spanish or brown that you would be mexican. in new york, puerto rican, dominican, cuban, the list goes on and on and you had different neighborhoods and different cultures and you learned where people are, so there was more of a diversity. so this is good. listen, it is not the end of the world. it is not the worst thing. i think if lin-manuel miranda said, hey, i learned from this, he is a guy that can get things made. you know, part of hollywood, hollywood's favorite color is green and he creates green. as long as he creates green, if in his next project he says he wants to use darker people as leads or mix of light and dark or however he wants to do it, hollywood will play along because he has been proven to be money. that is their favorite color. >> briefly, alonzo, you mentioned your father is from
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honduras. do you personally identify as afro-latino? do you personally identify more as african-american? how do you see yourself? >> i haven't even made it to african-american. i will go with black, i will be honest with you. >> right. okay. >> all joking aside, as i said, i identify as african-american or black because it is how i was raised culturally, and totally i think it is just a different time. he came to the united states in the late '30s, the early '40s, and at that time people assimilated and he definitely looked black. you know, i look like my dad. i think had it happened, had he come to the united states, say, i don't know, in the '70s or '80s, then i would have much more contact with my latin influence. i probably would be bilingual, et cetera. but, yeah, i identify as black or african-american with no disrespect to my father. it's just the way we were raised. >> no, i hear you. i hear you.
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everybody, please stick around. we want to continue talking on the other side of this break. i should also note we are continuing to following this breaking story out of south florida. one person is known to be dead after two people were run over at the stonewall pride parade and festival in wilton manors, florida. this is video we have just received. i should note that nbc news is working to independently confirm the number of fatalities and injuries. wilton manor sits just north of ft. lauderdale, kind of the hub of broward county's lgbtqia community, and the stonewall pride parade and festival is a giant event every year down the center of downtown wilton manor along wilton drive. ft. lauderdale's mayor dean trantalis has confirmed the account of what happened. he was on the scene. we are working on getting more information. you see on the map where milton manor is, next to ft. lauderdale east of the highway, near downtown ft. lauderdale. we are going to work on some more updates including possibly
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a news conference with officials as that comes in. we will keep an eye on this story and get back to that and to our panel when we come back. ! nothing rhymes with liberty mutual. only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪ (vo) jack was one of six million pets in animal shelters in need of a home. he found it in a boy with special needs, who also needed him. as part of our love promise, subaru and our retailers host adoption events and have donated 28 million dollars to support local animal shelters. we're proud to have helped over 230,000 pets so far... changing the lives of dogs like jack, and the families who adopt them. subaru. more than a car company.
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you're looking at video we have just received into the newsroom from wilton manors, florida, a community just outside ft. lauderdale, florida, in broward county, which is the site of breaking news we are continuing to follow. one person is dead after two people were hit, run over at a stonewall pride parade festival in wilton manors, florida. this is one of the largest pride celebrations in south florida, in one of the most concentrated, most thriving lgbtqia communities in the state and, indeed, in the entire southeast. we are working to independently confirm reports of the fatalities and injuries and any other dignitaries who may have been on the scene. we know that ft. lauderdale's mayor, dean trantalis, who also has a law firm in town was on the scene of this event and has confirmed some of the details of
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how this all happened. for now, of course, the parade is on hold. as you can see, police are on the scene. we think there might be a press conference coming up in the next few minutes or at least soon. we will keep an eye out for that and bring you more updates on this breaking story as we confirm them. what will be the new normal for america's workforce? it could involve a lot fewer workers. according to the bureau of labor statistics nearly 4 million americans left their jobs just in april. that is the highest quit rate since the agency began tracking this data. no wonder "the l.a. times" says that summer 2021's hottest professional trend is quitting your job. our panel is back with us to discuss this. philip, let me start with you. there's a new survey that estimates upwards of 40%, 4-0 percent of workers are considering quitting their jobs. this comes at that time when a number of employers are clamoring to find people to fill open positions.
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what do you think is going on? >> yeah. i mean it is sort of curious. i don't really know what the baseline is in terms of people always sort of want to quit their jobs. there's a healthy percentage of americans that always feel that way, but we sort of leaped frogged from everyone is freaked out about the pandemic to being in this position where people are so eager to hire folks it gives people the sense of, oh, it will be relatively easy to find a job if i want one. i think it is important to remember a lot of trends are overlapping right now. for example, the baby boom, the youngest members of the baby boom are going to start hitting 60 in a couple of years and a lot of people will want to move toward wanting to retire by virtue of raw demographics. this pandemic may be accelerating that in a way we didn't necessarily anticipate. we thought people would be sticking and longer than they had been, but, of course, they're a year or two away from retiring anyway and maybe they don't feel like going back out and trying to find a job. a lot of things are underlying this. i think the economy is still in
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this -- i wouldn't really say shaky place because it doesn't necessarily seem unstable, but certainly it is discombobulated. it isn't the economy we had in february of 2020 and we are still trying to find our feet after this world historic event we weren't expecting and certainly we weren't prepared for. >> cristela, different employers are taking different approaches to pulling people into the office. we heard the ceo of morgan stanley tell workers if they can go to a restaurant in new york city they can come back to the office. goldman sachs is packing up and moving some workers to florida, to south florida. we also know that the way in which we balance work and life has shifted a great deal. this pandemic hit women especially hard. caregivers especially hard with child care and senior care and care for loved ones who may be disabled, that shifted because of the pandemic and now is shifting back. but, cristela, how do you think we will make this work life location in the office, out of the office balance work?
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>> well, i think it is actually -- i think that's why people are quitting, actually, to make things work. there's a couple of reasons, right? during the pandemic a lot of people i think really kind of saw what their employers were like, meaning how much of their lives matter to them. i mean that just goes into execution and how they handled the pandemic. what was the outreach? did you get to work at home? did they make you come in? so, you know, it is that thing where i think in these very stressful times in the past year, so many people realized what really -- what really -- like their work really mattered, how important they were to their employers. i think that right now also with the past year with the pandemic, with the lockdown, people realized that, you know what? if we're going to do something, we should do it now. it is kind of this moment of realization when you realize it can come and be taken away from you at any moment. this was something no one saw coming on this kind of level.
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so i think that right now people are realizing that in order to make the workforce happen, in order for them to go back to work, i think they've realized that happiness or trying to find a better situation, especially like with women, with a lot of the caretakers, a lot of it just both male and female, i think people realize that it is all about making their lives easier, you know. so i think that right now we are going to go into a shift where the workplace will evolve into something where maybe, maybe it is not about working all of these hours a week. maybe it is not about killing yourself. maybe it is about living more. >> i wonder what you think are ways to deal with what cristela described, this wasn't working for me before really, why should i go back to the same situation again? there's been talk from some employers about shifting from a five-day workweek to a four-day workweek, kind of as an incentive to allow people more
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work/life balance i suppose. what about that? do you think that might help or are there other things employers should consider that might have a larger impact? >> well, i think what would really be a big impact would be more money. >> yeah. >> there are a lot of people who -- you know, there's two sides to this. there are the people who found maybe money isn't the most important thing and i don't want to go back to work killing myself and this and that, but other people are quitting their jobs because they're getting offers of better jobs. there are a lot of jobs to be filled, and, you know, it is almost like athletes now, where people are free agents and they're saying, hey, i can make more money working for company x than company y so i'm going to company x. the four-day workweek, we have talked about this in this country for so long, about easing traffic and, you know, getting fridays off, et cetera. i don't know that you can get everyone to agree on it. i'm sure it works for a lot of people in a lot of industries,
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and they would be happy to have that long weekend every week. that may be one of the incentives that employers are using to bring people to their company. that might be something that, you know, if you are dealing with child care or something where it is like, oh, it is easier if i'm off on fridays or if i'm off on mondays. so that just might be another incentive to bring people in. but, you know, it is interesting in the talk about money and minimum wage, et cetera, et cetera, that one more time in the past year, you know, the billionaires made more billions and they're somehow knocking people who want to quit a job that pays $12 an hour to move to a job that pays $15 an hour. >> right. >> like they're doing something wrong. so people have found other incentives, but if money is the incentive and you can get a better offer, i couldn't fault anyone for taking it. >> alonzo bodden, cristela alonzo, philip bump, good to have you with us. thanks very much. i should note we are still following breaking news out of south florida. one person is dead after being
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run over at the pride parade in wilton manors near ft. lauderdale. working to confirm details on this attack. we will keep you posted as we learn more. if you find yourself getting cynical about the fight for racial equality, you might find some hope in juneteenth itself. i'll share my thoughts before we go. every curve, every innovation, every feeling. a product of mastery. get 0.9% apr financing on the 2021 es 350. experience amazing at your lexus dealer. i love eggs, get 0.9% apr financing on the 2021 es 350. and there's a big difference between ordinary... and the best. which egg tastes more farm-fresh and delicious? only eggland's best. which egg has 6 times more vitamin d, 10 times more vitamin e, and 25% less saturated fat? only eggland's best.
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i am the dream and the hope of the slave. maya angelou wrote it in her poem "still i rise." it is a fitting sentiment on this juneteenth when america is thinking about the struggle for racial justice. then again, when is america not thinking about this? this day should remind us our faith in the future is well placed, that things have changed for the better and they will
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continue to change if people of good conscience fight for it. it is always a kind of back-and-forth process, isn't it? after all, the 13th amendment which banned slavery was ratified in december 1865, just months after the first juneteenth. but the supreme court mangled it with its ruling in policesy versus ferguson. establishing the principle of separate but equal. america's work to become a more perfect union is often slow and the pace rarely seems to accelerate. still, i think the larger risk is assuming that just because other things move faster, that progress is not moving at all. just because you can stream the latest movings on opening day or get pad thai delivered in 30 minutes, don't think things are stuck because they don't move at internet speed. things also felt bleak about a century after the first juneteenth. on april 4th, 1968, the reverend dr. martin luther king jr. was shot dead on the balcony of a motel in memphis.
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had he not been assassinated, he would have led a protest at the national mall, the poor people's march. the idea was for poor people to set up an encampment on the mall, resurrection city. they would camp there, lobby members of congress, and advocate for better policy to address class inequality. unfortunately, it did not go well and organizers had to cut it short in june, but they went ahead with a closing celebration, solidarity day. and what date did they pick? june 19th. and according to black cultural scholar william wiggins jr., the crowd rekindled interest in the holiday. think about that. it was one of the lowest moments in the civil rights movement after dr. king was killed and yet it sowed the seeds for this weekend's celebration. today the push for equality takes many forms, voting rights, law enforcement reform, environmental justice, critical race theory. covid has forced us to face one
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particular form of inequality. health disparities. this week new york state and california lifted nearly all of their pandemic restrictions after hitting vaccination goals. people of color lag behind in getting shots, but i think juneteenth has a lesson there, too. it's about the liberating power of knowledge. remember, this holiday marks the moment slaves in texas learned they were free and then acted on that information. the ignorance and misinformation that have prevented many people of color from getting immunized feels like an insult centuries in the making. some people who refuse to get vaccinated cite the tuskegee experiment as a reason for distrusting the medical establishment. but really that excuse makes no sense. do you know what the tuskegee experiment actually was? first of all, it was not an experiment. nothing was being tested or tried out. it was an observational study of syphilis.
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researchers recruited 600 black men, most of them who had it. the study, again a study, not an experiment, been in 1932 about a decade later penicillin became the treatment of choice for syphilis. however, and here's the key, the men in the study were not offered penicillin. that was the cruel injustice. researchers had the treatment but withheld it. contrast that with covid. we know how well the vaccines protect us and doctors are trying to give everyone their shots as fast as possible. that is the complete opposite of the tuskegee study. on top of that, america's historically black medical schools were covid vaccine test sites and this april the bloomberg philanthropies adding funding to a mobile vaccination effort led by these schools. again, nothing like the tuskegee study. how can we celebrate juneteenth, a holiday that's all about the liberating power of information,
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but also let misinformation keep us in unnecessary danger? if knowledge is power, then we need to cut on some lights asap. i may get flak for saying this, but i mean what i say. you cannot logically say that black lives matter and not get vaccinated. if you have not done your part to protect black folks from yet another disease that hits us worse than white folks, then miss me with all your huffing and puffing about inequality and systemic racism. just miss me. if you consider yourself an ally to black and brown people and you have not gotten vaccinated, how does that work? don't be eager to just do the big showy things like protesting. do the small things that make a big difference. do what's right, not just what's righteous. black folks know how to share information at the barbershop or nail salon or in line to pick up our kids or in church on sunday morning. we were among the first power
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users of social media, pace setters, and we still are. we spread the word about trayvon martin long before the national press caught on. we could have led the way on covid. we still can. you know what to do. has all the info you need to get your shot. it's not too late. it is amazing how powerful the truth can be if we seek it out and if we share it with those who trust us. the truth of emancipation could not be stopped no matter what southern states did to hold it back. and the truth how far we have come as a nation from our shameful past is enough to crush the cynicism and fatalism that so many of us are fighting through right now. the cynic would have you believe that america has to achieve everything before we can believe anything. but the spirit of juneteenth is to honor every step forward, not just the one that crosses the finish line. what was the hope of the slave? we are.
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the people of color freed from servitude and everyone who renounces the bigotry of the past. that is how we embody the ending of maya angelou's beloved poem "still i rise." leaving behind nights of terror and fear, i rise. into a daybreak that's wonderously clear, i rise. bringing the gift that my ancestors gave, i am the dream and the hope of the slave. i rise. i rise. i rise. and with that said, we'd love to hear from you. how has observing or learning about juneteenth affected you? email us at or tweet us. keep it brief, 100 words or fewer. but feel free to include pictures, especially if you went to a juneteenth event.
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just make sure they are pictures you took yourself. no clip art. no pics that belong to someone else. either way, don't forget to tell us your name and where you live. we will share some of your stories and pictures tomorrow. we will continue to follow this story out of south florida. as we mentioned, one person dead , two people run over in a pride parade near fort lauderdale in the city of wilton manors. we will get updates as quickly as we get it. please do stay with msnbc for the latest on that. tomorrow night barbara lee joins us live. the house voted to repeal the 2002 iraq war authorization, but it's been in effect ever since w we'll get into that tomorrow. until we meet again, i'm joshua johnson. do stay with us for more on that breaking story. thanks for making time. good night. there was nothing i could do.
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>> and i am natalie morales. >> and this is "dateline". ♪ ♪ ♪ >> i got a call, and she told me he was missing. >> they asked would anyone want to hurt him? i knew that my dad had been on >> this is not going to end well. this is a crime scene. >> miles off nothing up here, it's an easy place for a man to go missing. >> he can't find my brother? >> he was the school superintendent, not the type to play hooky. >> he really loved teaching and workth


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