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tv   American Voices With Alicia Menendez  MSNBC  November 20, 2021 3:00pm-4:00pm PST

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alicia picks up our coverage now. >> hello, everyone. i'm alicia menendez. 18-year-old kyle rittenhouse is a free man after claiming self-defense for why he shot and killed two men with an ar-15. the state journal argues it sends the wrong message. the answer to unrest including the torching of homes and vehicles. but that's not the message
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rittenhouse supporters heard. some celebrated showing off a white power symbol. they were not alone. "the washington post" quotes -- >> in the meantime americans, disappointed with the verdict took to the streets protesting in kenosha and other cities across the country. nonviolent although authorities did declare a riot in portland. barbara mcquaid, former u.s. attorney, and malcolm nance, and senior reporter. it's great to see y'all.
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malcolm, you were the first person i heard talking about this. how did yesterday's acquittal further empower those militia? >> they operate within a field where they see themselves as acceptable vigilantes. starting in charlottesville in 2018 and moving onto the summer of george floyd in 2020. i said that many of these would see themselves as political enforcers as the environment would start to change based on donald trump's support for them. when the insurrection happened on january 6 we thought they would be shamed out of this game. it doubled their intent to carry themselves out as armed
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vigilantes. they are put themselves between law enforcement and the population. kyle rittenhouse saw himself as an individual self appoint today go and protect businesses that didn't ask for them in neighborhoods they never lived. they brought guns down. this sets the circumstance for a fight. it's going to set the circumstance for many, many other gun battles that will probably stem from this. >> terrifying. you write in a new op-ed -- sometimes a verdict can have sweeping consequences. what are the consequences of this?
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>> this is a verdict of 12 persons in kenosha, wisconsin who got the law on the offense and they made the decision. i think instead of looking at it as one moment in time, many people will see this on open season of carrying assault rifles into any community you want to to appoint yourself as a vigilante. that's what is so dangerous. i think it will make all of us less safe if we have kyle rittenhouse's with their backward baseball caps roaming the streets. >> you take this case, the arbery case, january 6,
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vigilanteism across the country, how is the department of justice responding? >> they are closely monitoring activities taking place outside the courthouse especially in kenosha, wisconsin. joe biden vocalized his thoughts about the outcome and we have to respect the decision. i talked to a lot of legal experts and prosecutors and they weren't surprised about the outcome. but they hope for state lawmakers to revisit their gun control laws and self-defense laws and hopefully this will prompt them to reform them. >> this exposed our gun laws, outlined the flaws of self-defense arguments. talk to me how all of these themes build on one another to
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create a more dangerous america. >> first off, i am a gun owner, did tactical shooting, i own ar-15 type weapons. you will never see them. they are locked in a safe, never brandished or paraded. they go to the range, i exercise them and they go back. what i described is responsible gun ownership along with the second amendment. what you see now is a completely different manifestation. these vigilantes are brandishing laws because laws allow them to open carry. it is not a matter of riding the range along the mexican border
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and thinking you might be ambushed. open carry is a symbol for these vigilantes to brandish the weapons wherever they are. they know these firearms intimidate people and that's why they carry them. when they say we are going to use our second amendment remedies, they intend for everyone to see them. until those laws are changed -- and this is a good reason to vote -- self-defense has been turned into a free-for-all to murder whoever you please. the only interesting component is these laws work in reverse. so drug dealers and others could use these same laws to flirt
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around the edges of common decency. >> just lay that out from a terrorism perspective, a legal perspective -- how does this nation's variation of gun laws make it harder for prosecutors to build a case and em bolden others to take the law
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into their own hands. >> having these weapons of war on the street makes us less safe. when they are legal, you have to wait for them to be used before any crime can be used. if assault weapons were band in this country, as they were in the 1990s for a short period of time, prosecutors can charge them for possessing the games. left of boom, stopping a violent crime before it occurs. boom is the bad act. left of boom is the moment in time before they used the gun. so when these are illegal to possess, you can take them down and create a tragic consequence. i think our country's infatation with guns is sending us on a dangerous course. all of our constitutional rights is subject to reasonable
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restrictions including right to bear arms. >> this is a basket of issues. we have talked about self-defense, gun laws in this country. when you are talking to experts in the justice department, where do they see this acquittal as moving our national discourse around these issues? >> with a lot of people following this case and others, they are following closely, it is raising alarm about the involvement of carrying a firearm and bringing it to these protests. one of the interesting things watching this trial and to note is that jurors were not asked if rittenhouse was at fault for bringing a firearm into a highly volatile situation. he was asked to determine if he had reasonable belief to use
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deadly force because he felt he was at imminent risk of death or great bodily harm. like with the arbery case, they are watching for the outcome because there will be tension depending on the verdicts. some felt that this enforces the idea there are two justice systems in america, one for black americans and one for other americans. so they are monitoring closely the reaction to verdicts like this. >> people said in advance if he is acquitted, he will become a symbol, a martyr for this cause. it's not just the encrypted
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apps, you have members of congress saying come down to capitol hill and have an internship. you have the right wing propaganda machine already celebrating him. in addition to everything on the hush-hush, there is everything on the main stage. >> he became a symbol the minute he was arrested and charged for these deaths. right down to his t-shirt, picture of him, t-shirts that say kyle did nothing wrong, free kyle rittenhouse. this man became a touchstone for the difference between the average citizens and those who see themselves as right wing extremists. you have to be a hard-core right
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wing extremist almost. even the mainstream. as you see, the congressmen who have offered him jobs, matt gaetz, they are not serious people, but they know thousand read their base. they understand the gun toting base, people saying when are we going to start using our guns, when can we start killing people,s they understand that is their core, their base. when you get kyle rittenhouse who uses his firehouse who one, is not in a position to do it, two, not trained to do it, three, but does it and kills people anyway. this is where they want to be. they really do want to use these fire arms.
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my upcoming book is called "they want to kill americans." there have been dozens of incidents, a run-up to a major insurgency, and these people see themselves as the arbiters of what is going to happen by using their weapons. thank you. malcolm, you are sticking with me. next, representative raul ruiz. and outrage is building over china's missing tennis star. first i hand it over to my colleague who is standing by with more information from the atlanta airport. >> flights are resuming at
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hartsfield-jackson airport. earlier at a screening area, a gun went off and passengers panicked. that is the country's busiest airport. the tsa say they found a prohibited item going through x ray. the passenger lunged at the bag, grabbing the gun and it went off. and then he ran out of the airport. here is what one passenger said. >> you hear about it, ead about it, but i never thought i would see it. >> three people sustained nonlife threatening injuries. there are no reports of arrest.
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97% of the bill was written together. there was some differences at the end and we will deal with those as we go forward. we will see what we need to, shall we say, reconcile our differences. at the end of the day we will have a great bill. >> after months of delays, the house passed the $1.7 trillion spending package. now it heads to the senate where successful passage would -- joining me now is the chair of the congressional hispanic
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caucus. we have been talking about the task before democrats is to go home to their districts and begin to sell what is in this plan. what is the pitch you will be making to your constituents? >> the build back better plan is a historic bill, a rocket boost to an economy that will launch middle class family by putting money in their pockets with help with costs like child care, health care and housing. doing all of this while decreasing the deficit, and being all paid for. >> this bill heads to the senate next. the coming days and weeks could be perilous. joe manchin has not indicated he is ready to vote for this. how do you see this playing out?
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>> as you heard earlier from speaker pelosi, that the vast majority of this bill will go through. some things may change during the voteorama in the sentence. it means a worker family who lost their job or decreased their wages are going to be able to go back to work because they will have affordable child care or preschool for their three or four-year-olds. there will be the earned income credit tax expansion. this is essential because the workers who lost their jobs will benefit the most. with the child tax credit, he will be able to lift children out of poverty. this is definitely going to be felt in the american family's pockets. they will be able to talk about
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this around their kitchen table once it's passed and signed into law. >> one of the final sticking points would be immigration. this would create the largest mass legalization for undocumented immigrants in history. this becomes a conversation within your own party for democrats in the senate who do not want to sign on to that. what is your argument about the political reality of this moment and why, beyond it being the right thing to do, economic imperative, politically why it is important for democrats to get this done? >> it's important because democrats have been making the argument we want to provide pathways to citizenship protection that have contributed to our economy. i have spoken to senators
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including senator synema and others, and as long as it is approved or ruled provisions for work permits and protections fit within the budget reconciliation, i feel pretty confident we will be able to pass it. we can also use the senate rules to add path ways to citizenship as well. we need to motivate the pace. we see hispanics aren't monoliths. there are different groups in different regions. america is a nation of immigrants and we need to uphold our promise of the american dream for millions in our country as well. it doesn't just benefit
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hispanics. it will benefit the gdp. and it will add new jobs by allowing immigrants to go to work, give them work permits, allow them protections. they can go back home for 5 or 10 years if they get their renewal. >> of course. we will have that conversation later in the show. will congressman gosar's action and the gom mean for the trajectory and extremism. and southlake, texas schools where allegations of discrimination continue to make national headlines. tinue to mak national headlines liberty mutual customizes their car insurance so they only pay for what they need.
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the gop's embrace of kyle
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rittenhouse isn't the only sign. look what happened with paul gosar. he was voted to be censured and stripped of his committees. mccarthy not only condemned him but suggested they could retaliate if they get control of the house. >> what is so hard? what is so hard about saying that this is wrong? this is not about me. this is not about representative gosar, but this is about what we are willing to accept.
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joining me is former florida congressman who is now a senior adviser and back with us is malcolm nance. debbie, what does this say about where the gop is headed? >> alicia. any form of violence should be condemned. and what we have seen in the history of the nation is one party is overwhelmingly using threat of violence to obtain power. we can't do that when we have one party intimidating others. this reminds me of what we have seen and continue to see in cuba
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today. it is not a matter of safety, but losing our democracy. it has no place in our country for one party to intimidate and harass those of an opposing view. what we are seeing in the republican party is they glorify this. they continue to spread and incite violence inorder to intimidate. we cannot allow that to happen. >> recent polling showed roughly a third of republicans agreed with the statement true american patriots might have to resort to violence to save our country. >> you heard debbie, not only is it a threat to our safety but our democracy. do you agree? >> we need to stop using the
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phrase republicans sliding towards extremism. republicans have jumped wholeheartedly with both feet into at the radicalism of their base. i wrote an op ed where i said we need to name and shame the insurrectionists so they wouldn't do it again. by march it was clear they were being backed by every element of the republican party. you saw the transformation, the same people that criticized them on january 7 are now praising them, saying it never happened. this is not a slide towards extremism. they are not trumpier than trump, they are trump. trump has allowed them to have their inner demons come out and take over their political common
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sense, but their political believes are based on the fact that their base wants their threat of violence. they want to be like donald trump. he is the avatar of their bigotry. the question is when will they get to the breaking point? because i see that question all of the time on extremist forums. the republican party is making it easy for then to resort to paramilitary violence. >> we talk about what democrats are trying to play on. the right so deep into disinformation. that they are trying to legislate things like build back better and republicans show no
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appetite. this was this week -- he adds that they were much more likely to vote for republicans no matter what. where does that leave democrats? >> we need to have a reality check. we don't have two equal parties working for america. we have one party that has gone off the deep end becoming completely radicalized to obtain power. we are at a dangerous place. democrats are passing bills for
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this nation. republicans are lying and monopolizing forms of spanish media. we have oan, fox news, radio stations spreading far right. they have been demonizing the other side. when you do that, it's easier to commit acts of crime and violence. i think we need to have a reality check, make sure we are strong on our message, but also start combatting all of these false attacks that are happening. but one of the things we need to say is we need to pass stricter gun laws. it's unconscionable that a 17-year-old was able to purchase
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an ar-15 and carry it on the streets. freedom, democracy and safety is a priority and should continue to be for every one involved. >> debbie, i will see you later in the show. thank you, malcolm. as a reminder, he has this new book out. three separate investigations into a school district in southlake, texas. we will talk to one of the co-hosts about the latest discrimination allegations after the break. immigration reform, have democrats missed their chance or is it on the horizon? is it on the horizon #1 for diabetic dry skin #1 for psoriasis symptom relief and #1 for eczema symptom relief.
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carroll school district in southlake, texas. now the department of education is getting involved opening three investigations into the district. they first came into attention with students in a video chanting the n-word.
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parents of black students shared their story -- carroll students also experienced -- this program and others like it around the country became
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linked to a contentious fight over so-called critical race theory. antonia, why does the department of education decide they need to take action on this specific school district. >> what you outline there is significant. to make clear, for anyone unfamiliar with what this investigation process is like, when the department of education's office of civil rights receive complaints, according to experts, only 5 or 10% become open investigations. in this case there are three in one district. they are looking at complaints dealing with students in the district that range from racial harassment to gender identity. right now the names of the families are confidence and the
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department of education is not going to make any of their stories public much this is coming on the heels of months, or arguably years, where parents of color or lgbtq feel their children's rights have been violated. it is not just racial slurs or insulting the students' sexuality, but also teachers or administrators turning a blind eye to these things. that's what we expect to learn more about in the next months or potentially years. >> how long will a department of education investigation take? what happens if they found violations? i think in the context of that mom thing, we just need to get
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her to graduation. kids are living in this real time. how long are these investigations supposed to take? >> these are serious. there will be employees who travel to southlake and do interviews with parents, administrators. and they will have to hand over documents the government requests. this can take up to a year. in the event they find violations, the government could say in order to move forward you need to make x, y, z changes to your school policy. carroll can go along with that or deny those. if they do that, they risk federal funding. and they could be under a monitoring process by the federal government for a couple more years to come. if you are a junior or senior in
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this district, the reality is you may not see the outcome in your time. but when you talk to parents who have these kids, they say they understand that, and are sad it comes to this point, but feel it is necessary. well put. explain how southlake has become the center of this debate that we have seen taking over school boards across the country. >> southlake was ground zero. they started having this fight before critical race theory became part of the branding. the community at first rallies together, a group of volunteers, parents, administrators in the
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school start working on a proposed diversity plan. and then it comes out in a political context of the community. and then the phrase critical race theory comes up and parents start to attach that to the proposals worked on by people who didn't know what critical race theory was, didn't know who kimberly crenshaw, one of the founders of it. these are moms doing the work after school and then being accused of a grand indoctrination scheme, and tumbles out from there. southlake was one of the first places to begin this fight. >> the podcast is called southlake. it is available wherever you get your podcast. the cdc recommends booster
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ordinarily. nbc news talks with dr. anthony fauci to get an in-depth look into boosters. >> are you seeing evidence of waning immunity and hospitalization and death here in the u.s.? >> we're starting to see inklings. >> there's a growing consensus it's time for all adults to get the third dose. today more than 32 million americans have received their booster shot. >> when you boost people, you dramatically increase the protection and diminish the risk of hospitalization and death. >> but how do you know when it's time to get boosted? the cdc has put out guidelines. if you received the pfizer or moderna series, the cdc recommends getting the booster six months after your last dose. if someone received the johnson & johnson vaccine, they should get the booster two months after the last shot. and these boosters are working. >> the rate of disease is
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markedly lower for those who received their booster shot. >> reporter: pfizer claims their booster is 96% effective at preventing any symptoms. another study last month from israeli researches and harvard medical school found booster doses for 92% effective at preventing severe disease. >> israel has always been about a month or a month and a half temporally ahead of us in the dynamics of their outcome, in their response by vaccination, and now in their boosters. >> reporter: as more people get boosted, another question looming is how safe are they? a big concern has been myocarditis in young men or inflammation of the heart muscle. have you seen anything from israel about any safety signals emerging? >> the answer to that is no, and we're in close contact with our israeli colleagues. >> reporter: dr. fauci's advice is that it may be time for all
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of us to get the shot. >> there are no significant adverse events, safety signals, that it looks clear from safety, then i would be very much in favor for having boosters for everyone who has been vaccinated at any age. >> reporter: now that we know boosters are safe and effect, how and where do you get them? the best place to start is by calling your local pharmacy or go online to your local state health department to see where the shots are being given. >> that was nbc news dr. akshay seal reporting. what kyle rittenhouse's acquittal means and what it tells us about the true value of life in america. later, the women's tennis association threatens to boycott china if the country's missing tennis star doesn't surface soon. the latest on the search for
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we promised to turn away no one, remembering how mary and joseph were turned away at the inn. >> why didn't mary and joseph call ahead for reservations? surely they must have realized how impossible it is to get a hotel room during the christmas season. >> i guess that's one for the theologians, rose. >> she's okay. hopefully she's watching this
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right now and laughing along with us. we simply wanted to get a little rose's humor into the show ahead of the holidays. for one other reason we'll get to shortly. we wouldn't to get a head start on celebrating the beloved actress turning 100 in january. 100 years on earth, trail-blazing the entire way. she is truly america's golding girl. as the 99-year-old nears her centennial, it's worth remembering the barriers she broke and a life dedicated to spreading kindness. her career is unlike any other, spanning some nine decades. she scored fer history gig at the age of 8 on radio. by the 1950s she was a bona fide tv regular. among the first women nominated for a new emma category in 1951 called best react. she starred in numerous hits, including most recently, "hot in cleveland." she hosted "snl" thanks to a massive facebook zane people
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say, but, betty, facebook is a great way to connect with old friends. at my age, if i want to connect with old friends, i need a ouija board. >> after nearly 100 years on earth, there's no shortage of betty white material to find. if you like me are among her biggest fans, listen. right now we have found a job for you. literally. through monday, choice mutual insurance is taking applications, offering $1,000 to watch betty's best work. to get the job, you must, of course, adore betty white. you must be 18 years old and a u.s. resident. the grueling job duties include a tight 24-hour deadline in which you will be required to watch ten hours of pre-selected betty white film and tv appearances. you'll have to document the entire experience on social media. again, you have until monday to apply online. good luck. but if you don't get the golden gig, just remember, the words


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