ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
June 21, 2013
Guests: Sari Horwitz, Glenn Greenwald, Ari Berman, Barbara Arnwine, Nancy
Giles, Jelani Cobb, Seaton Smith, Francis Northcutt
CHRIS HAYES, HOST: Good evening. I`m Chris Hayes in New York.
And there is breaking news tonight: the U.S. government has filed
criminal charges against former National Security Agency contractor Edward
Snowden. Snowden worked as a security analyst for the NSA and leaked a
trove of classified documents about secret surveillance programs to
reporters at "The Guardian" newspaper and "The Washington Post".
Tonight, "The Post" reports that Snowden is charged with espionage,
theft and conversion of government property.
For more details, we turn to NBC News justice correspondent, Pete
Williams, with the latest on the story.
Pete, what do you have for us?
PETE WILLIAMS, NBC NEWS JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know,
everybody is reporting this now because the government is actually released
the charging document itself. The first page, it`s a very bare bones
thing. It shows only three counts.
This is the totality in what the government released, by the way.
The rest of the case, if you try to go to the court`s Web site and look at
it, it says it`s under seal.
But he is basically charged with violating three federal laws.
First, stealing government property, and then, secondly, two charges under
the espionage chapter in the federal charging book, improperly giving out
classified national defense information to somebody who is not cleared to
receive it and then a separate charge for improperly giving out classified
information about communications intelligence. So, the three charges, each
of them carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.
The other interesting thing about this, these charges were filed in
court a week ago, June 14th, under seal, and we just learned about them
Now, what this means is the government has now started the process of
seeking an arrest warrant in Hong Kong for the arrest of him. Obviously,
the FBI can`t go over there and arrest him any more than the Hong Kong
authorities could send somebody over here to arrest someone in the streets
of Washington or New York. So, we filed, the government, U.S. government
filed this provisional warrant. The Hong Kong authorities then arrest him,
and then the United States starts this process of extradition, asking the
Chinese authorities to send him back which he has said, if that happens, he
HAYES: NBC News justice correspondent Pete Williams, thank you for
bringing us that. We appreciate it.
WILLIAMS: You bet.
HAYES: Joining me now is a reporter who broke the story tonight,
Sari Horwitz, who covers the Justice Department for "The Washington Post."
Sara, can you pick up where just left on the Hong Kong extradition,
when Snowden went to Hong Kong, there was tremendous spirited debate about
whether that was a wise choice or not. What do we know about what is the
next step in this process now that a formal criminal complaint has been
filed by the U.S. government?
SARI HORWITZ, REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST: Now that the criminal
complaint has been filed in the eastern district of Virginia, the United
States has 60 days to file a formal indictment. At that point, the United
States will ask Hong Kong authorities to extradite Mr. Snowden. That could
be a complicated process. We have a treaty with Hong Kong, as we do with a
about 120 other countries.
And in that treaty, there`s a clause that allows for an exemption on
political offenses. Now, one of the charges today is espionage, that could
be a defense on the part of Mr. Snowden, that that is a considered a
HAYES: So, here`s my question for you. This is interesting to me
and I did not know this actually until you just said this. So, the U.S.
government clearly has been in contact with the government of Hong Kong,
HAYES: And you were saying that they have communicated that they
want him -- now that they filed this complaint, they want him detained by
Hong Kong authorities immediately?
And it`s interesting, the United States is sending a message. I
mean, they moved quickly on this. It shows how seriously they are taking
what they consider a very significant national security breach, national
security leak. They are saying to Hong Kong authorities, we want Mr.
Snowden picked up, detained, arrested, put in jail and held until we filed
an indictment. And then they will move into the extradition process, which
could get very complicated.
HAYES: OK. So let`s say he is detained by the Hong Kong
authorities. He is then indicted in the U.S. There`s an extradition
process, and he can obviously file an appeal against that extradition,
HAYES: One of the ways presumably he might be able to do that, it`s
fundamentally a political charge by the United States, because he is being
charged under a statute called the Espionage Act passed in the Woodrow
HORWITZ: Yes. 1917 Espionage Act.
Well, this case will go to the court. Now, understand there are two
tracks this could take, extradition and asylum. If it`s extradition, it`s
fought in the court. And presumably, he will have. Mr. Snowden will have
a legal team. There is this clause, an exception for political offenses.
There`s also a very rare exception in the Hong Kong treaty. Experts
say they haven`t seen this in other treaties, that would allow Hong Kong to
say they want to keep Mr. Snowden in Hong Kong because it`s in the best
interest -- defense interest or foreign interest of the country. Now, it`s
very unclear what exactly that means. It`s actually unclear the
interpretation of political offenses.
HORWITZ: So, both of those will be fought in the court.
HAYES: Sari Horwitz, who has a big scoop in "The Washington Post" --
thank you very much.
HORWITZ: Thank you.
HAYES: Joining me now on the phone is Glenn Greenwald, columnist on
civil liberties and U.S. national security issues for "The Guardian"
Glenn, of course, broke the Edward Snowden story in "The Guardian,"
spent a lot of time with him in Hong Kong, interviewed him.
Glenn, I want to get first your reaction to the news today, which I
don`t think this is surprising given whatever Snowden to doing and also the
way this administration has gone after leakers? What is your reaction to
hearing the news?
GLENN GREENWALD, THE GUARDIAN (via telephone): Well, I think it`s
surprising for the second thing reason which is the Obama administration`s
record. I think it`s very surprising to accuse somebody of espionage who
hasn`t worked for a foreign government, who didn`t covertly pass
information to an adversary enemy of the United States, who didn`t sell any
top secret information, who simply went to newspapers, asked newspapers to
very carefully (ph) leak out the information to make sure the only thing
being published are things that inform his fellow his citizens but doesn`t
harm national security. That is not espionage in any real sense of the
This is 1917 statute enacted under Woodrow Wilson to criminalize
opposition to World War I. It has been used very, very sparingly
throughout American history until the Obama administration, which has
embraced with an extreme vigor as a means of punishing and prosecuting
whistleblowers. So, in that regard, I think it`s unsurprising.
HAYES: Well, let me just -- we should say that one of the complaints
is theft of government property. The specific language in the complaint
theft of government property, unauthorized communication of national
defense communication, willful communication of classified communications
intelligence information to an unauthorized person and a section of the
U.S. code, that last one comes in, is from the 1917 Espionage Act, which I
will editorialize, is a pretty terrible piece of legislation.
My question, though, Glenn, here is -- doesn`t the government have to
do something? I mean, someone who worked for the government and inside the
government skips out with 1,000 classified documents. This is a fairly big
breach, even if you think, as I quite frankly do, the net benefit has been
huge and it`s precipitated a really needed debate. That just from the
basic institutional sense, there has to be some recriminations or
accountability or calling to account or some formal process through which
someone who does something that so blatantly violates the basic norms of
the institution, as what Edward Snowden himself has admitted doing.
GREENWALD: So, I would say two things about that, Chris. First of
all, I don`t think you will find very many people argue that he should not
be charged with any sort of a criminal offense. I think when he did what
he set out to do, that he understood that it was in violation of the law
and he felt like it was a noble act, justified under basic theories of
disobedience, and that he expected to be charged with a crime.
I don`t think anybody is objecting to that. I think the issue is the
extreme zealousness, the over-charging of the Obama administration
specialized in when it comes to whistle blowers is the issue. The fact
that He is 29 years old and will be threatened with life in prison the way
that Bradley was, the way that Prior NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake is, the
extreme excess that really reflects a sort of vindictive mentality on the
part of the administration with regard to anybody who brings transparency
And the other thing that I think is extremely disturbing is, if this
administration were equitable and consistent in trying to punish people who
leak classified information, you could look at this act and say, well, I
think it`s excessive, but at least it`s consistent. All sorts of Obama
officials have continuously leaked top secret and classified administration
in order to benefit the administration, to politically glorify the Obama
administration, none of them has been charged or indicted.
HAYES: Although --
GREENWALD: What you have here is a misuse, a manipulation of these
laws, not to protect classified information but to punish people who leak
in a way that embarrasses high level political officials and that`s why I
think makes it so pernicious.
HAYES: Yes, I mean, I think that`s a very important point. Although
I should also note, the Stuxnet leaks, which is, of course, the offensive
cyber warfare operation the U.S .conducted against Iran that was written up
in "The New York Times" and quoted what appears to be senior administration
officials talking about classified, there is a Department of Justice
investigation on that.
So it`s possible we see down the road stuff come out of that that
would perhaps even the scales in that regard.
Glenn Greenwald from "The Guardian" newspaper, thank you so much for
joining us tonight. Really appreciate it.
GREENWALD: Thanks for having me, Chris.
HAYES: One man has brought two cases to the Supreme Court that could
kill affirmative action and the heart of the Voting Rights Act, one guy.
Who he is and what he is after, coming up.
HAYES: Texas Republicans are ramming through a bill that would shut
down abortion clinics across the state, but they`re going to have to beat
back a massive grassroots movement to stop them.
And one of the most awkward apology videos I`ve ever seen, I`m
talking about Paula Deen, y`all, coming up.
HAYES: The United States Supreme Court heads into a weekend with
just two days left in June to announce decisions, and with two gigantic
blockbuster cases that could fundamentally reshape our society`s approach
to racial equality yet to be decided.
On Monday, the Roberts court could affirmatively end affirmative
action in public education, and strike down the core of the Voting Rights
Act, arguable, the single most effective civil rights law in the history in
the history of this country. That could all happen on Monday because of
the work of one single man, a 60-something retired-year-old stock broker
living in Penobscot, Maine, by the name of Edward Blum.
The story of how Edward Blum came to have four cases heard by the
Supreme Court is a remarkable one. It starts back in 1992 when Blum, a
stock broker living in Houston, decided to run for Congress, in Houston`s
18th district, a majority minority district which has been gerrymandered to
maximize minority voting power.
He won the Republican primary and went to run on against the African-
American Democratic incumbent. He was walloped, losing to the Democrat
Craig Washington by 36 points. Blum was so traumatized by the experience,
he decided to sue the states, arguing the district unlawfully segregated
voters by race in violation of the 14th Amendment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is there any bitterness on your part for having
lost the election? Does that explain any of your concerns here?
EDWARD BLUM: No, because of course Texas is not the only state in
which something like this is taking place.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: That case known as Bush v. Vera went all the way to Supreme
Court and in 1996, four years after Edward Blum`s foray into electoral
politics, he won. The Supreme Court struck down the two Texas districts,
one majority black and one majority Hispanic, and ordered Texas redraw
their boundaries. Remember Blum had now found his life`s work, taking a
sledgehammer to every last piece to proactive efforts to produce racial
equality by considering the race of the people at issue.
Blum was said to have, quote, "felt so vindicated," he decided to
devote himself nearly full time to the fight against race-based laws and
policies. He turned his attention to smaller battles. In 1997, he led a
bond effort to kill a Houston program pushing for more workplace diversity.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REPORTER: Today, Houston could become the first city to kill
affirmative action. Voters will decide whether to scrap a 13-year-old
program that requires companies to give 20 percent of their work to women
and minorities when doing business with the city. Bond underwriter Edward
Blum says that`s wrong.
BLUM: We know that government cannot grant a preference to an
individual based upon his race or gender without discriminating against
somebody as a consequence.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: In 2000, he moved to Washington, D.C. and floated around
conservative organizations, once working on a campaign to encourage people
not to check the race category on the U.S. Census.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BLUM: It is amazing to me that the Office of Management and Budget
in the Clinton administration will recognize during the tabulation that a
white mother can have a black child, but a black mother cannot have a white
child. This is a throwback to Jim Crow era one drop rules, and it`s really
reminiscent of Nuremberg.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: In 2005, Blum started his own one-man nonprofit called the
project unfair representation, financed by a tax-exempt charitable group
called Donor`s Trust, who according to Internal Revenue Service documents,
spent about $1.2 million from 2006 and 2011. And that is almost all form
So, with a bunch of conservative backers at the side, Blum turned his
sights on finding the perfect plaintiffs to take on any law that actively
considers race to create more racial equality. He first found a utility
company in Texas to challenge the constitutionality of the Voting Rights
Act. The argument was that the South changed, the Voting Rights Act was no
longer. The case made it all the way to the Supreme Court but this time,
With a newly conservative Supreme Court, Blum turned his attention to
affirmative action, specifically targeting the University of Texas, which
admits anybody that graduates in the top 10 percent of their class, but
also considers a number of factors for the remaining spot, including, not
limited to race. In order to destroy that system, he set out to find the
perfect white student, setting up a Web site called utnotfair.org, asking
white students who were rejected to send in their stories.
Blum was not finding any rejected white kids up to the task until his
own conservative buddy Richard Fisher called him up and said his daughter
had just been rejected from the University of Texas. Blum told Richard
Fisher that he would not have to pay a single cent in legal cost, and that
he had, quote, "financial backing." He connected the Fishers with the
Washington, D.C. law firm and Abigail Fisher agreed to lent her name to the
case. He now have the perfect plaintiff.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ABIGAIL FISHER, PLAINTIFF: There were people in my class with lower
grades who were not in all of the activities I was who were being accepted
into U.T., and the only other difference between us was the color of our
skin. I was taught from the time I was a little girl that any kind of
discrimination was wrong.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Blum had bigger sights, taking down the Voting Rights Act,
something he failed to do in 2009.
And one day, while cruising the Department of Justice`s Web site, he
saw that the DOJ under the Voting Rights Act had rejected a voting map for
a small town in Shelby County, Alabama, called Calera. He acted quickly
and called the attorney for Calera and greater Shelby County, Frank Ellis.
The two men immediately clicked. Ellis said he had been chaffing under
Section 5 and was intrigued by Blum`s call.
Blum promises Ellis he would take care of all legal fees and Ellis
agrees to bring suit on behalf of Shelby County, arguing the Voting Rights
Act was outdated.
Fisher versus the University of Texas and Shelby County versus Holder
are before the Supreme Court right now. We are awaiting those rulings,
largely because Edward Blum went out and found the perfect plaintiffs to
get these cases there.
Edward Blum, a broker and middleman for disgruntled white people,
funded by God knows who, may very well be responsible for genuine
dismantling of decades of law that seeks to use racial considerations to
make this country a more equal place, to address the history of white
supremacy and racism.
And perhaps scariest of all, Richard Blum is not some quirky outlier.
It has been a central project of the conservative movement over the last 40
to 50 years to dismantle the political, legal and social institutions
erected in the wake of the social rights movement to insure equality.
And Justice Roberts, the chief justice on the Supreme Court, before
he became Justice Roberts was part of that movement. In fact, Richard
Bloom and Justice Roberts are a lot of like. They both preach a simplistic
brand of color blindness, as Justice Roberts summed rather famously in 2007
saying, quote, "The way to stop discriminating on the basis of race is to
stop discrimination on the basis of race."
It might as well be Edward Blum talking.
Joining me now is Ari Berman, my colleague at "The Nation", where he
is a contributing writer and has reported extensively on this issue.
And, Barbara Arnwine, president and executive director of the Lawyers
Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
Ari, you have written about this. I think I first learned of Edward
Blum when you were on last show on "UP," talking about him going out and
finding these plaintiffs? Do we know who is behind him? It`s just so
remarkable, this is one guy who`s kind of working out off his laptop and
making phone calls and getting two cases in one term before the Supreme
ARI BERMAN, THE NATION: Well, he has the perfect sponsor, Chris,
from this group called Donor`s Trust, which is really the most influential
conservative group that most people haven`t heard of.
In 2010, Donor`s Trust gave out $22 million to a who`s who of
conservative groups, including groups like the American Legislation
Exchange Council, who have written a very kind of discriminatory voter laws
that have been blocked under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. Donor`s
Trust gave Blum, as you mentioned, $1.2 million. That`s a lot of money for
a one-man conservative legal defense firm to go out and to find plaintiffs.
And he has been successful, so far, even though he has lost in the
lower courts, I might add. But he`s been successful precisely because
there`s like-minded people on the Supreme Court who are receptive to
hearing these challenges.
So it`s both the fact that he has a lot of money from the top members
of the conservative movement, and then he has receptive figures on the
court who want to hear these challenges. So, once again, in the pipeline,
the Supreme Court is accepting these cases --
BERMAN: -- and ruling favorably on them in a way they warrant not so
HAYES: Barbara, what`s fascinating to me is this argument you hear
from conservatives a lot, and sometimes they even quote Dr. King about the
content of the character and not the color of the skin.
This has -- this argument has taken hold, I think, part of society,
white Americans particularly, white people now believe that anti-white
racism has increased, and is now a bigger problem than anti-black racism,
according to poll from Tufts University School of Arts and Sciences and
Harvard Business School. I believe they have replaced blacks as the
primary victims of racial discrimination in contemporary America. Both
whites and blacks agree that anti-black racism has decrease over the last
60 years. However, white believe that anti-white racism has increased and
now with bigger problem.
What do you say when you hear that argument, when you realize that
Edward Blum`s phrasing of the problem in the simple terms he does, and
Justice Roberts is having some rhetorical purchase with the American
BARBARA ARNWINE, LAWYERS COMMITTEE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS UNDER LAW: Well,
they are just tapping into a vein of racial resentment that`s out there.
It`s very interesting because Abigail Fisher, whenever she talks, she talks
about the color of her skin but she never talks about all the other whites
who also got in --
ARNWINE: -- under the same program that she is challenging. And in
fact, the majority of the people who admitted were white. So it`s really
her against other whites. But she wants to use the racial dynamic because
it sounds better, because it appeals to, you know, a vein of white
resentment that believes white superiority, really because they believe
that white is better.
And there is that vein in our society, it`s deep, it`s ingrained and,
unfortunately, there are people in the court who have some of those same
views, and overcoming that is part of the continued civil rights struggle.
HAYES: Ari, very quickly. There has been a long-term assault on the
Voting Rights Act. What is your sense of how this case is going to come
BERMAN: Well, you are right, Chris. It goes back to George Wallace,
Richard Nixon, and it`s updated by Edward Blum and John Roberts today. I
mean, I think anybody who would listen to the oral argument as I did thinks
that both affirmative action and the Voting Rights Act are in a lot of
trouble given the current makeup on the court.
I mean, there`s not a swing vote when it comes to matters of racial
equality. I mean, Roberts and Kennedy are both pretty militant on the
issues. Now, the question is: are they willing to go so far to have such a
radical step that would roll back so many generations and decades of racial
progress, and I think that`s going to be a radical step for the court to
HAYES: Ari Berman from "The Nation", Barbara Arnwine from the
Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law -- thank you both.
BERMAN: Thank you.
ARNWINE: Thank you.
HAYES: Hundreds show up to the Texas state capital and give 11 hours
of testimony about some of the most restrictive abortion bills in the U.S.
So, what happens? The committee calls a meeting with two hours notice and
holds it in a tiny room and shuts out the public and media ands votes yes
on all of them. But it`s not over yet.
More on that coming up.
HAYES: Pretty remarkable showing of people power at the Texas
statehouse last night into the wee hours of the morning, as close to 700
people packed into a hearing of what was called a people`s filibuster
against two drastic and extreme anti-choice bills being pushed by Texas
Republicans. Hundreds of Texans who care deeply about reproductive rights
fought hard to delay the bills and hope to block their passage by forcing
the committee to hear hours of public testimony.
We had a lot of compassionate testimony which is the public`s right,
said Republican committee Chairman Byron Cook. But then Mr. Cook grew
tired of listening to citizens talk about the real stakes of the bill he
was pushing through and said that although the testimony has been
impassioned, it has become repetitive. One witness shot back, "Our words
are not repetitive. Our government`s attacks on our choice, on our bodies,
And Cook adjourned the meeting after nearly 11 hours of testimony,
denying hundreds of people the chance to speak.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PAMELA OLDHAM, AGAINST HB 60: This is crazy. When they shut us down in
that hearing, they did what they told them they were doing to us,
suppressing us and the chairman said we were being repetitive. He was
bored. He didn`t want to hear anymore because they knew how they were
going to vote.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS HAYES, HOST: Texas legislatures actually already tried to pass
strict anti-abortion bill during the state`s regular legislative session.
When that failed, Government Rick Perry gave the bill`s new life when he
added them to the list of issues lawmakers can debate in a special session
where a streamline process means they are easier to pass.
Together, these two bills make it nearly impossible to get an
abortion in the state of Texas. House Bill 60 and House Bill 16 would
close 37 of the state`s 42 facilities that perform abortions and ban
abortions after 20 weeks. Just when it looks like the filibuster had
beaten back the bills, this afternoon the House State Affairs Committee
reconvened and quietly approved both bills, setting them up to be debated
and voted on by the full house.
Texans Republican Lt. Governor David Duherts sent a tweet on
Wednesday referring to the Senate version of the bill saying we fought to
pass SB5 through the Senate last night and this is why. Just to be clear,
Duherst tweeted a graphic when a planned parent group in Texas that says in
no uncertain terms that these bills will essentially ban abortion in the
In other words, that`s the Republican saying that the reason he
fought so hard to pass the anti-abortion bill is that it will ban abortions
in the state. Republican lawmakers in Texas are making no pretence about
what their aims are.
Joining me now is Francis "Poppy" Northcutt, who goes by Poppy. She
is the president of the Texas Chapter for the National Organization for
Women. Poppy, you were there last night as part of the remarkable action.
Tell me what it was like in that room. Where did you get the idea for a
FRANCIS "POPPY" NORTHCUTT, PRESIDENT, TEXAS NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR
WOMEN: I think it originated with Jessica Furrar who is the state
representative -- pro-choice state representative who sits on that
Governmental Affairs Committee that was hearing the -- doing the hearing on
HAYES: What was it like? I mean, what happened in that room? It sounded
like quite a scene. Eleven hours of people talking. At some point they
tried to shut you down and the folks in the room basically rebelled?
NORTHCUTT: Well, they did. There had been hours and hours of testimony,
and people had waited hours to testify, and you have to understand, they
had driven all over the state hundreds of miles and then waited. I drove
180 miles and waited 10 hours before I testified, and just to speak for
less than 3 minutes. So we had a room that was -- it seated 150 in the
audience, and it was standing room only, plus an overflow room that had
probably another hundred or so in it. And these people came from all over
the state and waited all this time and they wanted to have their three
HAYES: What happened when the Republican chair told you, you were not
going to get it?
NORTHCUTT: The room exploded. I mean, the people started standing up and
shouting, and they were so angry because they had come all this distance
and they were determined that they wanted to speak, and they were
especially owe fended by saying what they were going to say what
repetitive. How would he know it was repetitive when he didn`t know what
they had to say in the first place?
HAYES: It looks like this bill is going to get debated and a vote on the
House, and there is a real threat this could become law, and it would have
a drastic affect on women`s lives across Texas. What is the next plan here
to stop this bill from becoming law?
NORTHCUTT: Well, there is going to be -- the Democratic legislators are
going to work on trying to slow it down until the session runs out. It has
to be adopted before Tuesday is over. And then there is also legal attacks
that are being put together to attack in terms of the way this is being
adopted as well as substantively in case the bills do go through to make
constitutional challenges. On the citizens` area, which, of course, I am
involved in, we will be planning to try and get as many people out and
communicating with their elected officials between now and the end of the
HAYES: Poppy Northcutt from the Texas Chapter of NOW, thank you so much.
We`ll be right back with Click 3.
HAYES: Paula Deen has had day y`all. That`s coming up. But first I want
to share the three awesomist things on the internet today beginning with
the resolution to a week-long mystery. For days now there has been endless
speculation over what Kim Kardashian and Kanye West would name their baby
girl. The early frontrunner, Kaidence Donda West, a perfect name according
to the internet because it starts with a "K" and also pays tribute to
Kanye`s mom. There was so much certainty over it. "New York" magazine
boldly stated if Kaidence Donda West is not Kanye`s baby then we`re giving
that name to our next eighth gold fish.
Time to take a trip to Yield Pet Store because last night during the
middle of the NBA championship game, the Kanye baby birth certificate was
dropped, and the name was not Kaidence Donda West nor was it a product
placement or Imoji as some speculated, the baby`s name is North West, no
middle name, just the direction between north and west on a compass.
And the internet doesn`t quite know what to do with this
information. There are tweets about a defunct air carrier. And back at
the NBA championship game, the legendary Bill Russell let out a big yawn.
So there you have it, North West, kind of disappointing, but on the
celebrity baby naming scale it`s better than Blanket but definitely below
Blue Ivy. Watch the throne easy.
The second awesomest thing on the internet today takes us to Brazil
where the biggest demonstrations in decade swept the country. What started
out as a single protest against a bus fare increase has evolved into a
nationwide movement, tens of thousands have taken to the streets rallying
against an array issues from high taxes to corrupt politicians.
And once again, like we have seen in other parts of the globe,
social media is playing a prominent role in conveying information. Some
really incredible images are coming out of the demonstration. As one
organizer put it, it`s like the taking of the Bastille. We will continue
to watch history unfold. To be continues.
And the third awesomest thing on the internet today, it`s the first
day of summer, a reminder you will have many lazy days ahead to perfect
your internet naming skills especially when it comes to your pet, in the
spirit of dog shaming and cat bearding. Not to be confused with, of
course, cat threading.
BuzzFeed reminds us today of the great web site`s Sleep Page in
which you can stick an album cover in front of your pet and create a hybrid
creature that lives only on the internet. Call me crazy, but this could be
a good marketing tool for rescue organizations. Who wouldn`t want to adopt
a dog like this?
All this pup wants to do is have some fun, am I right? Of course,
it encourages humans to participate too, and I hoping to inspire you with
my own contribution, and here I am in with Rappin Rodney. You can find all
the links for tonight`s Click 3 on our web site, allinwithchris.com. We`ll
be right back.
HAYES: This week brought us the eruption over Food Network star, Paula
Deen, after the "National Inquirer" of all places broke the story that she
admitted to using the "n" word in a deposition for a law suit by her former
employee. Today has brought us no less than four major Paula Deen
developments, some of them bizarre and ending with the Food Network`s
decision not to renew Deen`s contract. All right, first, Paula Deen was
this morning a no show on the "Today`s Show."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She told me at one point, Savannah, I don`t know how to
be anything but honest. I said, fine, she got on a plane and arrived in
New York City last night and then we started to hear from her people that
she is exhausted. They believe she is in the hotel, but she has not
confirmed anything other than that she is not here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And she has been on the show so many times, and we
consider her a friend and we would hope she will reconsider because she
needs to address this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Deen posted this picture in which she looked really uncomfortable,
promising a video statement, and here is part of that video statement, the
45-second video apology.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PAULA DEEN: I want to apologize to everybody for the wrong that I have
done. I want to learn and grow from this. Inappropriate hurtful language
is totally, totally unacceptable.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Within hours, for reasons not entirely clear, the Deen camp put out
a longer, more specific video apology. Here is part of that one.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DEEN: And man, I have to say, I was physically not able this morning. The
pain has been tremendous that I have caused to myself and to others, and so
I am taking this opportunity now that I have pulled myself together and am
able to speak to offer an apology to those that I have hurt.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: By this time the Food Network said in a statement, Food Network
will not renew Paula Deen`s contract when it expires at the end of this
month. In the deposition that sparked this whole thing, Deen admitted to
having used the "n" word after a man -- a black man robbed a bank she
worked in and held a gun to her head in the 1980s.
She also admitted to having a recently described a southern
plantation style wedding, that might be appropriate for her brother. Based
on a restaurant she had been to with her husband. The whole entitle wait
staff was middle aged black men, and then is there any reason you could not
have just done the same thing but have that but have people of different
races, and she said, well, that`s what made it.
Today we get to watch our national ritual of public apology, which
so far seems to have done little for Paula Deen. Joining me is Nancy
Giles, a contributor of CBS Sunday Morning, Jelani Cobb, Director of the
Institute for African-American Studies at the University of Connecticut and
blogger for the "New Yorker" and comedian Seaton Smith. It`s great to have
you guys all here.
So well, let me just say one thing, superficially, when you are
doing public apologies and you are a public person you should write them
down and put them in a teleprompter and read them off because winging it
does not work. What do you guys make of this? I will let you go first,
because I don`t want to over determine the direction of the conversation,
but I am curious what you make of all this?
JELANI COBB, UNIVERSITY OF CONNECTICUT: I think it`s from the Michael
Richards school of after the fact racial apologies, which is are you really
concerned about the harm that you did or were you bothered about this when
you were using the term or are you bothered by the fallout that has become
public that you use this term?
HAYES: In case, Michael Richards is a guy called Kramer on "Seinfeld," and
he got into it with a heckler who happened to be a black man and then just
let out some of the most offensive -- just vile racial slurs and talked
about lynching --
HAYES: The reason I am putting those facts on the table and the infraction
seems to be not as bad.
COBB: Yes, because we saw it. For the people who saw it privately,
probably were struck by who she is in public and that she is somebody that
can use this terminology or language in private where she doesn`t think she
will be called for it.
SEATON SMITH, COMEDIAN: I would love to have seen the video of her doing
it. I am not managing her at a bank, and burns her hands, and "n" word --
NANCY GILES, CONTRIBUTOR, CBS SUNDAY MORNING: It makes no sense that she
said among other times when she used the word, she used the example of the
gun being pointed to her head, and then the next question is did you use
that word to the person -- of course not. What are you talking about?
HAYES: The thing that was so fascinating about that, if that word is
coming out of her mouth in the wake of some trauma, it`s in there before
the trauma. That`s the thing that to me was -- I was like, what is going
GILES: Well, Chris, what really struck me was they asked her point blank,
have you ever used the "n" word, and her answer was, yes, of course. I
appreciate that level of honesty.
HAYES: She is getting beaten up for that, and I believe she is in her 60s,
and of course, she has.
GILES: She said it. A lot of people we know would have said, absolutely
never, no. And I thought that was telling.
COBB: But the usage of the word was one thing. I thought the interesting
point was the nostalgia, when she was talking about it gets to a deeper
point. I lived in Atlanta for a long time and I would drive past an
apartment complex called the plantation, and I wondered how do you sell
this on African-Americans, would you like to move into the plantation? We
have nice properties out back?
SMITH: I have to be the odd Negro on this panel. I am not offended --
GILES: You are not offended.
SMITH: I am not. I feel like -- first I heard she used the "n" word out
HAYES: Yes, like she just got it on her show.
SMITH: She makes an amazing rib casserole, but 70 years old and she has
not used it in 20 years, that`s a great head start for her.
HAYES: And I want to pick up on that. And then I want to talk about the
way in which this plays out. It struck me as similar to -- well, it`s
about the way this word has this particular focus for all of us, as if all
racism begins and ends with the invocation of that word, and so I want to
talk about that after we take this break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is your slave?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, no, no. He`s not a slave at all. We don`t have
slaves here anymore. It`s a law that was passed they can no longer be used
as slaves, and it`s a good thing, yes, for them.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not so much for you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You are right.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: We are talking about Paula Deen that can`t seem to shake a certain
culture that reveres the old days. In the deposition it came out she
wanted to plan her brother`s wedding in the plantation-style with an all-
black wait staff and white gloves, and that was similar to a restaurant she
had been in.
And I don`t want to be a northern white liberal who is all about who
turns the Paula Deen story that turns this opportunity to feel better about
us, and that`s a white woman in the south using the "n" word, and racial
relationships in the south in the 21st Century are complicated in a
COBB: They are. What I think is that you can have that racial experience
in New York, or in Boston, or anyplace in the north where you can
experience racism. In the south, these things are a little more
complicated, because even if there is the existence of racism, there is
still a kind of weird affinity or a weird kind of connectiveness, because
people live in close proximity and they have. I mean, the food that she is
cooking is in some ways influenced by African-American culture.
GILES: She stole our recipes. That`s our thing. And you are right about
it not being an opportunity to feel good. I feel like that word is -- it`s
a loaded word. I would like a real conversation about it where we start to
talk about the fact that it`s the only slur against a race that somehow our
people -- some of our people embraced as a term of endearment, and I can`t
imagine any other group dancing to the fill in the ethnic color, you know.
HAYES: And beyond that, it`s a word that has power.
HAYES: And it`s interesting, for me to hear you say that you basically
forgive her or you are not that offended by it, because we have built-up --
I can`t say it on air. The word is so powerful, and it`s an ultimate
social taboo, and it stands in for racism so all that the people that use
that use that word are OK, and the ones --
SMITH: Well, I don`t like New York cops. I don`t like the cops or
Democrats. Democrats have done more racist laws, stop and risk, more than
Republicans or Paula Deen. I would rather have rib casserole than stop and
frisk any day.
HAYES: And there was a sweet that was on that point, Paula Deen apologizes
and then there was a link about marijuana arrested for black folks are four
times as high than white people, and that`s about enforcing the rhetoric of
the world and the apologize ritual.
What about Tent Lott -- I will not play the sound, we don`t have
time. But the Trent Lott ritual, he said basically at a birthday party, if
we elected this guy we wouldn`t have problems -- I think he should have
stepped down, and he was the minority leader at that point. We have a
ritual of apology coming out of scandals and particularly around scandals
that have to do with race that to me end up not resolving anything.
COBB: I think they are more damming in the way Congress has the nonbinding
apology for slavery in 2010. There is a policy or something that we are
going to do to make up for the damage done in the society and it says much
more about the person who is the offender.
HAYES: Do you think she should lose her job?
GILES: That`s a hard question.
SMITH: No, it`s not. She cooks chicken. Let her cook chicken and say the
"n" word. When I have blood sugar, I am calling everybody the "n" word,
GILES: She didn`t try to cover it up. It certainly rocks the image that
she projects. I think people will look at her in a different way.
SMITH: Her image is a southern white lady.
HAYES: That`s the question. The question to me is --
GILES: Not really.
HAYES: Enforcing this in a certain way, we all go like this, and then it`s
like, okay, that`s what racism looks like, it`s southern white people using
that word. Nancy Giles from CBS Sunday Morning, Jelani Cobb, University of
Connecticut, comedian Seaton Smith, thank you. That is ALL IN for this
evening. The "RACHEL MADDOW SHOW" starts right now. Good evening, Rachel.
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