All In With Chris Hayes, Friday, December 5th, 2014
Read the transcript from the Friday show
Show: ALL IN with CHRIS HAYES
Date: December 5, 2014
Guest: David Feige, Dorian Warren, John Carlos, Josh White, Lori Garver
CHRIS HAYES, HOST: Tonight on ALL IN -- the uproar over the Eric Garner
grand jury decision continues. Tonight a new report cast even more doubt
that the district attorney ever wanted an indictment.
Plus, Olympic medallist and activist, John Carlos, on why protest by pro-
athletes need to continue.
Then the bridgegate investigation finds no evidence directly implicating
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.
"Rolling Stone" distances itself from its own blockbuster report about rape
And we have lift off.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The dawn of Orion in the new era of American space
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: But is the Orion spaceship a critical step on the mission to Mars
or a political boondoggle.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is tomorrow`s technology. We`ll learn from this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: ALL IN starts right now.
Good evening from New York. I`m Chris Hayes. In New York City at this
moment, a wake is taking place for a man shot and killed by an NYPD
officer. Demanding more this hour is not Eric Garner, it`s 28-year-old
Akai Gurley, who was shot and killed by rookie officer, Peter Leung in a
public housing building in Brooklyn last month.
Tonight`s wake is happening just two days after a grand jury decided not to
indict NYPD Officer Daniel Panteleo in the chokehold death of Eric Garner
sending thousands of people out in the streets across the country. Those
protests continue today.
Tonight, right now, protesters are out in New York and Washington, D.C.
after more than 200 people arrested in New York City last night, according
to the NYPD. The protests against the grand jury decision continue, we are
learning more about the process that produced that decision.
WNBC reporting today that Staten Island District Attorney Daniel Donovan
asked grand jurors to consider only manslaughter and criminally negligent
homicide charges and not the lesser reckless endangerment charge, which
presumably would have been easier to secure an indictment for.
We spoke to the D.A.`s office today. A spokesman had no comment on the
report indicating the D.A.`s office is not authorized to release any
additional information on the case. Now, New York City is about to go
through this entire process again.
Because this afternoon, Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson, said he
will convene a grand jury to look into the death of another African-
American man. Akai Gurley, whose wake, as I mentioned, is going on right
He was killed last month by rookie NYPD Offer Peter Leung in a Brooklyn
public housing building. Police say Leung and his partner also new to the
force were patrolling a dark stairway on the 8th floor in a public housing
Girlie and his girlfriend entered the stairway one floor below. The
officers -- police say Leung was patrolling with his gun drawn and he fired
it, apparently by accident.
The "New York Times" reports that Girlie made it two flights down before he
collapsed. His girlfriend ran to call 9-1-1. He was taken to the hospital
where he was pronounced dead. New York City Police Commissioner Bill
Bratton called the incident a tragedy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL BRATTON, NYC POLICE COMMISSIONER: The deceased is based on total
innocence, in that the offices were entering to the adjacent hallway, one
landing up, and was not engaged in any criminal activity. The deceased
was not engaged with any activity other than trying to walk down the
Anonymous sources told "The Daily News" quote, the officers involved were
not supposed to be patrolling the stairways. In fact, they`ve been
specifically ordered, quote, "Not to carry out such patrols known as
Even worse, the paper reports, again, according to unanimous sources that
while Girlie lay bleeding in a stairwell, the cop who fired the fatal
bullet was texting his union representative.
We reach old to the NYPD`s largest union to ask about the allegations in
"The Daily News. Did not hear back from them, but a patrolman`s benevolent
association spokesperson told Buzzfeed, quote, "The Daily News" story about
the officer texting the union delegate does not appear to be true.
We have over 400 delegates, but the ones that served the area he was
working in did not receive any text from him. This morning, Gurley`s
mother spoke for the first time about seeking justice for her son.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SYLVIA PALMER, MOTHER OF AKAI GURLEY: My son was my life. There`s nothing
in this world that can heal my pain and my heartache. And I pray to God
that I get justice for my son because my son didn`t deserve to die like
that. He didn`t deserve to die like that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Joining me now former public defender, David Feige. So David,
first of all, I want your respond to the news we are getting out of Staten
Island, which continues to be the big story here.
I think what we haven`t entangled enough is what the heck happened there
and how much was the outcome that was the outcome that Mr. Donovan actually
wanted. What does it say to you that he did not seek that lesser charge?
DAVID FEIGE, FORMER PUBLIC DEFENDER: It says everything. Let`s just go
through what reckless endangerment in the first degree is. Under Section
12025, you have to deprave in difference to human life and you`ve got to do
it under circumstances that create a grave risk of death and we know what
OK, so you`ve got a video that shows two elements, the important two
elements for that charge. Why it wasn`t submitted? Well, none of us will
ever know, but I have a pretty good suspicion.
HAYES: What is your suspicion? I want to know this because we`re getting
news today we now have a shooting death of Akai Gurley and we have news
about a grand jury. I`m not sure the city can take another -- I`m really -
- I think the reaction to something happening like this again is not going
to be good.
FEIGE: I agree, Chris. And I hate to be the voice of moderation here.
But let`s take a moment to differentiate between these two things. There
is a vast difference between stupidity and an accident and choking a guy to
So let`s distinguish and I do think it would be tragic if, by the way, the
Brooklyn case wound up being a sort of scape goat, you know, or an
opportunity to do this thing that we -- we want to see justice.
And clearly there was recklessness. You shouldn`t be doing verticals. By
the way, just fix the lights. You shouldn`t be walking around with your
gun out and a flash light. But you shouldn`t be putting someone in a choke
hold. It`s disfavored.
So to circle back to your question, the reason I don`t think it was
submitted is because he wanted a no true bill. One of the easier ways to
get a no true bill is to force a grand jury into an untenable position in
which they have to charge someone with a homicide offense. And that`s a
HAYES: In your experience, and you have a lot of it, in court rooms and
grand juries and trials, is it possible -- even the best prosecutor in the
world, the most honest man or woman with supreme integrity, based on what
they do every day, how they have to work, what the institution has set up.
Is it possible that any prosecutor really can be independent and fair-
minded in the prosecution of a police officer for doing something to
someone that results of a death on duty?
FEIGE: It`s really hard for someone and it`s really hard when you`re
district attorney in a place like Staten Island, which by the way, is full
of police officers and police officer families where your constituency
supports a no true bill in a case that deserves a true bill.
You`re asking is it possible? Yes, I think it`s possible. If you created
a unit that`s focused solely on investigating and prosecuting police
officers, you take a big step towards that. But the way that the political
system works right now, you have prosecutors who rely on their police to
make their cases, right.
I mean, look, I`m talking from Hollywood. When a star acts up onset, you
go to great lengths not to blow up the show. It`s the same thing because
the show comes to an end, right? That`s the kind of courtesy that you
afford to the people who carry your show and the cops in this case carry
HAYES: David Feige, former public defender, always a pressure, David.
FEIGE: Great to see you.
HAYES: So over the past several weeks, we`ve heard prominent police union
officials from across the country speaking very strenuously on behalf of
their members to protect them.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The process that Bob McCulloch used in this case was
different. It was to oblige the public outcry.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We feel badly that there was a loss of life. But
unfortunately, Mr. Garner made a choice that day to resist arrest.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We don`t always get a chance to look back at what could
have been done or what tactics could have been better or less. We had to
react right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Those statements are not just posturing. The role of the union is
to protect their members at every moment, especially when they`re facing
allegations of misconduct. Can you talk about reform without talking about
Joining me now is Dorian Warren, associate professor of Political Science,
Public Affairs at Columbia. Dorian, you are a scholar of labor history so
it`s part of the reason I want to talk to you.
I mean, what is your feeling about police unions? As someone who`s a
supporter of labor, supporter of strong due process and collective
bargaining, watching the way the police unions have behaved in the wake of
these different shootings.
DORIAN WARREN, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY: Well, it`s disappointing to see those
responses from the union officials. Let me be very clear, everyone
deserves representation at the work place and so I wouldn`t want this to
become a large anti-union argument about why police officers don`t deserve
But there is -- and they should defend their members, to an extent. But we
also need police unions to be stakeholders and to reform processes in all
of these departments across the country because it`s not that the union
that`s responsible for training.
The union didn`t train that cop that killed Akai Gurley. There`s something
structurally and -- structurally problematic about how we recruit and train
police officers across the country that results in the killing of black
people and especially of unarmed black people.
HAYES: And white people I would add. It`s actually striking the number.
Here`s the thing, the concept of collective bargaining, the theoretical
police union that might exist, the actual police unions that we`ve seen
have not only fought tooth and nail.
But they have fought against all the policies you`re talking about. So
they fought against new training. They are waging a war here in New York,
a political war. Go pull up the web site viewer of the Patrolman
(inaudible) Association of New York and see what their image is.
It`s a way of waging war on this mayor. So they as actual existing
political institutions, it seems to me, are pretty strong obstacles at this
moment to some of the changes we`d like to see.
WARREN: Indeed and yes, that`s very and in fact, for any of the reforms
that the mayor wants and Commissioner Bratton want to implement, it has to
go through the rank and file, right.
Now, I don`t know what the rank and file thinks vis-a-vis the leadership so
I think we should separate that. Just because the leaders are out there in
front of the cameras saying one thing, it doesn`t mean that`s how rank and
file officers feel.
HAYES: And they`re talking about 30,000 officers --
WARREN: And they are plenty of officers that have empathy with their
neighbors. So I wouldn`t want to cast a large net to say this is
HAYES: That`s exactly my point because the fact of the matters is one of
the voices in the room in all these conversations are these police unions
and when you see the statement that came out from Jeff Rorda and St. Louis
talking about thugs.
Then the question is, OK, these are the institutional players that are the
actual stakeholders in how people are going to be policed and how we`re
going to train those police.
WARREN: I mean, I think we could have a whole discussion about strategy to
recruit the rank and file, to vote out those elected leaders. I think
that`s the way to go because we need rank and file officers. We need the
union to be stakeholders in any kind of reform process without question for
it to be successful.
But that has to be -- there has to be a different strategy for them versus
the strategy we put on in terms of putting pressure on the police
commissioner versus the strategy that activists and protesters right now
putting on the mayor. Not just in New York, but in cities across the
HAYES: Watching the way that the politics just played out and David made
this point, right? There`s a bunch of different constituencies so I was
acutely aware of this when I was in Ferguson, right. That the governor is
-- you know, he is not just talking to cable news viewers in New York or
Chicago or Florida, right.
He is talking to his voters in Missouri. His voters in Missouri might feel
one way about this case. It`s very different than people who are watching
national media feel about it, right.
But the way that a certain constituency of people who are viewed with a lot
of political power feel about these incidents is very different than how
folks I think like yourself and I would say myself feel about them.
WARREN: Absolutely. I would just distinguish between leadership and
elected leaders. Whether it`s political leaders or union leaders versus
rank and file constituents and I actually don`t think we really know in
terms of -- no one has done a survey of rank and file police officers about
how they feel, about their normal everyday work practices. We need more
HAYES: And, in fact, in some cases, we have seen rank and file officers
blow the whistle. So the lawsuit that happened here came because and
actually an officer recorded his supervisor telling him to go out and get
more people of color.
WARRNE: That`s right. I think there`s an important role for whistle
blowers, especially. I would bet many New York City police officers don`t
agree with what the union leaders are doing right now.
HAYES: That`s a good assignment for someone out there. I would love to
see a poll of police officers -- we are looking at police message boards
and trying to add up what they think (inaudible). Poll police officers,
you can do it. All right. Dorian Warren, thank you.
WARREN: Thanks, Chris.
HAYES: Still ahead, John Carlos, one of the medallists shown in this
iconic picture for the 1968 Olympics, will join me live to take a share of
his opinion about professional athletes currently protesting.
HAYES: Some great news tonight on the jobs front. Employers have 321,000
jobs last month. That is the biggest gain in nearly three years and the
unemployment rates stayed at 5.8, a six-year low.
So right now to put this on perspective, 2014 is on track to be the best
year for job gains since 1999. That`s not all. The last five years have
literally been record-breaking.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Our businesses
have now created 10.9 million jobs over the past 57 months in a row. And
that`s the longest streak of private sector job growth on record.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Great news, the jobs front had a ripple effect on the stock market.
The Dow and the S&P 500 closed at record highs tonight. Now, if workers
were only seeing those gains in their paychecks.
HAYES: Just as the report from a year-long investigation appears to clear
Governor Chris Christie of any involvement in the George Washington Bridge
lane closings. There is news today that some of his former staffers may
soon be indicted for their role in those lane closures.
The interim report from the New Jersey legislative panel states in its
conclusions, quote, "At present, there is no conclusive evidence as to
whether Governor Chris Christie was or was not aware of the lane closures,
either in advance of their contempt ration.
Nor is there conclusive evidence as to whether Governor Christie did or did
not have involvement in implementing or directing the lane closures. The
report has not yet been formally accepted by the legislative committee,
which is meeting Monday.
But the basic take away is that the governor is not implicated. The lawyer
hired by the governor`s office to conduct its own investigation, the
committee has finally acknowledged what we reported nine months ago.
Namely, there`s not a shred of evidence that Governor Christie knew
anything about the GWB lane realignment beforehand or that any current
member of his staff was involved in that decision.
WNBC is reporting that in the U.S. attorney`s criminal investigation, at
least half a dozen potential federal indictments in connection with the
scandal may be handed down as early as January.
Those facing potential indictment include former staffers to Governor
Christie and current and former Port Authority officials, the sources said.
So good day for Chris Christie, but signs of some bad days ahead perhaps,
what does it mean for a man who clearly has presidential aspirations.
Joining me now is our own Steve Kornacki who has been reporting on
brigdegate since the beginning. So how do you make sense today? Because
we have the morning report and it looked pretty good for Chris Christie,
They`ve been trying for a year. They can`t find anything to tie him to it.
You`ve got to, at some point, say he`s in the clear and then this other
STEVE KORNACKI, MSNBC: So I think the best way to look at it is this.
Keep in mind, all the news you heard this morning were about the
legislative committee`s reports in this, the findings that the New Jersey
legislature has come up with.
The key there is the New Jersey legislature says, well, we can`t find
anything that ties Christie ahead of time or knowledge during it and they
there were all sorts of signs that maybe he could have figured this out and
just look the other way in the months that followed.
However, that investigation by that committee did not include any testimony
or any information from any of the principle characters that we have been
talking about for the last year. All these names that everybody knows by
now, Bill Stepian, David Wildstein, Bridget Kelly, these people did not
talk to that committee.
HAYES: Including the people that sent the smoking gun e-mails.
KORNACKI: Bridgett Kelly. However, all of these people have been dealing
with the U.S. attorney`s office. So the second report tonight, why this is
key is that the U.S. attorney`s office, which has been talking to all of
the principle players, and has had access to all sorts of stuff that this
committee didn`t have, is now looking at he says at least six indictments
of former Christie staffers. The number six is a lot higher than anyone
has been talking about.
HAYES: First, let`s take a step bark. How do you interpret the timing of
this? The way that I interpret it was the report comes out, the Christie
office sends out a kind of crowing statement. Look, we told you so. And
then someone links to WNBC and it`s like not so fast.
KORNACKI: Here`s the thing and this is the second time like this is
happening in a few months where back in September, there was another report
from a different reporter also from WNBC that basically said the same
thing, this legislative committee report is saying.
That basically said no proof that Chris Christie knew anything ahead of
time. When that happened, as you might expect from Christie`s office, a
full court press concerted public relations campaign, the exoneration of
Chris Christie --
HAYES: Time to move on.
KORNACKI: As soon as this report, this report by the way, this legislative
committees report was supposed to come out next week. It was leaked out
last night and as soon as it was leaked out, that press began again. They
even had the former governor of New Jersey Tom Cane go out there and talk
to the press today and say this whole process just stinks.
This whole investigation has been a partisan which has from the beginning.
So they have been ready to do that. And, now, all of the sudden, for the
first time again, nobody has been able to get reporting from inside the
U.S. attorney`s office.
And now, Brian Thompson, who is the best of the best is saying that nobody
has been able to get indictments to find out what is going on the way
HAYES: Indictments are a big deal. Six indictments in January would be a
huge deal. Obviously, it would completely, I would say, re-alter once
again the political trajectory of Chris Christie if nothing else.
KORNACKI: And it just raises to the extent of what`s going on here, if
there are this many people involved, it raises the question who has
provided things. A lot of questions have been raised.
HAYES: Steve Kornacki, thank you very much. You can of course catch
Steve`s show weekends at 8:00 a.m. Eastern right here. Thank you.
All right, a bomb shell report about a rape on UVA`s campus now being
questioned by the magazine that published it. More ahead.
HAYES: After a series of questions were raised about the credibility of a
bomb shell investigative report on "Rolling Stone", today, the magazine
editors are apologizing to readers for, quote, "discrepancies in the
The report published last month opens with details of a horrific gang rape
at the Phi Kapa Si fraternity at UVA in the fall of 2012. A woman is
identified with "Jackie." Jackie alleged she went out on a date with a
member of Phi Kapa Si. A student called Drew in the piece went to a party
in the fraternity house and was led to a room where she was attacked by
seven men who raped her in succession.
According to "Rolling Stone," Erdaly spent months speaking with Jackie as
well as her friends and university officials, but as the magazine statement
asserts, Erdaly did not speak with the accused at Jackie`s request.
Now, the magazine`s managing editor posted this statement to readers that
reads, in part, "In the face of new information, there now appear to be
discrepancies in Jackie`s account. We have now come to the conclusion that
her trust has been misplaced. We were trying to be sensitive to the unfair
shame and humiliation many women feel after a sexual assault.
And now regret the decision to not contact the alleged assaulters to get
their account. We are taking this seriously and apologize to anyone who is
affected by the story."
Today, "The Washington Post" published its own report working to
corroborate Jackie`s version of events. The Post interviewed Jackie
several times in the past week and contacted dozens of current and former
members of the fraternity, the fraternity`s faculty advisor, Jackie`s
friends and former roommates and others on campus.
The now 20-year-old UVA junior told the paper she stands by her version of
events and recounted an attack very similar to the one she presented in
The key details of the account seem to be contradicted by verifiable facts.
A group of Jackie`s close friends told the "Washington Post" they believe
something traumatic happened to Jackie that had come to doubt her account.
Jackie told "Rolling Stone," she was asked on a date by Drew, again a
pseudonym, who worked alongside her as a lifeguard at the university pool
and who took her out prior to the alleged gang rape at the fraternity
The "Washington Post" reports a name of an alleged attacker that Jackie
provided to her friends for the first time this week, for example, turned
out to be similar to the name of a student who belongs to a different
fraternity and no one by that name has been a member of Phi Kappa Psi.
Quoting more from The Post, "reached by phone, that man," the one
idenified, "a UVA graduate, said Friday that he did work at the Aquatic and
Fitness Center and was familiar with Jackie`s name. He said, however, he
had never met Jackie in person, never taken her on a date. He also said he
was not a member of Phi Kappa Psi."
Perhaps troubling, a red flag raised to the reporter Sabrina Rubin early by
Jackie herself. According to The Washington Post, Jackie said she asked
Erdely to be taken out of the article.
The University of Virginia`s President Theresa Sullivan said late today
that despite these developments, the school would not alter its focus on
the issue of sexual violence on campus and the school will continue taking
a hard look at its practices, procedures and policies.
Now, Charlottesville Police Department told the paper that "detectives are
looking into the allegations at the request of the university, but declined
to comment on the status of that investigation."
Joining me now Josh White, education editor for the Washington Post who I
believe edited this piece.
Josh, tell me the process by which the Washington Post went back and
started retracing the steps and the editing of this piece.
JOSH WHITE, EDUCATION EDITOR, WASHIGNTON POST: Sure, I mean for us, this
was a local story. We cover the University of Virginia. It`s a very
campus for us not just locally, but also nationally. And we looked at the
Rolling Stone piece and decided that there is definitely something here for
us here. We`ve been covering sexual assault nationally for some time very
in depth. And we decided we wanted to get into it. We wanted to interview
all of the main players.
And I think with any story like this, the only responsible thing to do is
go down to the campus, try to locate the people who are making the
allegations, try to locate the people who have been allegedly involved in
these sorts of things and then really just run all the facts to ground, old
school, hitting the bricks, trying to meet people and understand the
And that`s exactly what Taylor Shapiro did. You know, we sent him down
there. He met a lot of people, interviewed dozens of people in the course
of this. We reached out to everyone we could find associated with this
fraternity for the last several years and tried to run these things into
In the course of that, Taylor got to meet Jackie, got to interview Jackie
several times. And we wanted to take that story and find out as much as we
about every element of it. Was there a party that night? What happened at
that house? Who was involved? Where they were now? Could we find them?
Could we talk to them? That`s what led to our story today.
HAYES: OK. So, there`s a few things I want to distinguish here.
One is that there are some denials, Phi Kappa Psi is putting out statement
saying they didn`t host a party that night, which doesn`t necessarily mean
there there wasn`t a party at that house that night. I just want to be
clear about what is kind of established independently and what is
essentially denials or another group of sources saying something, right.
WHITE: Sure. And in the course of our reporting we, too, determined that
there was not a party there that night, at least not one that would have
been considered a date party. You know, houses have to register parties
with the interfraternity council on campus. Something like a date party or
an organized event would have been that kind of thing.
We learned that there was a date party at sometime earlier that actually
would have been quite distinguishable wearing the clothing that was
the outfit she was wearing to that party would have quite noticeable.
The fact that in reaching out to all of these fraternity members and to
people close to Jackie, and learning, essentially, that there wasn`t a
party or if there was a party, it certainly wasn`t an organized date
function. The fact that some of the details alleged were shocking to
people within the house as well as to those without.
These all led to further reporting. We wanted to answer these questions
the best we could.
Some of the things certainly today were in the denial from the fraternity,
but a number of the facts were things that we had independently verified in
HAYES: OK. So here`s what I want to drill down on, because I actually
have now read that piece numerous times, your piece numerous times. I`m
still a little unfair on this. The key thing to me seems to be that there
is a figure at the
center of this who`s a real person who is treated with a pseudonym. And
it`s pretty clear that in the Rolling Stone article, he was never contacted
reporter, perhaps not even given the real -- his real name was not given to
The name that you have didn`t come directly from Jackie, right, it came
from her friends who said that she told him that name. Is that correct?
WHITE: That is correct.
HAYES: And that`s the person that you contact?
So in the course of our reporting, we very much wanted to push to get a
name. It was very important to us. It was something that I had a lot of
discussion with Taylor about is how do we get Jackie to provide us a name
so that we can verify the account.
You know, we wanted to corroborate the account so that we could go with it.
And in the course of that reporting and in working with her friends, we
were able to get that name through the friends and we ran that to ground.
It actually wasn`t very difficult to run that name to an individual person.
We contacted that person and it provided for the first time that detail
that Jackie had provided about there being a life guard, that this person
was a junior life
And in this particular case, this person was a life guard and was in a
fraternity, just not the one that had been identified in the story.
HAYES: Not in Phi Kappa Psi, and, of course, denied that any of this
happened as pertains to him.
Josh White of the Washington Post, thank you very much, really appreciate
WHITE: Oh, you`re very welcome. Any time, Chris.
HAYES: Let me just put a small coda on this, there`s a great piece in Vox
by Amanda Traub about victims of trauma and their recalling of events that
I would recommend to everyone. And I -- we talked about this story a lot.
A lot of people talked about this story. But it`s another lesson about the
fact that you have to talk to everyone in a story as much as you possibly
All right. Right now, protesters are in the streets of Wwashington, D.C.
and New York protesting the Eric Garner grand jury decision. Last weekend,
several St. Louis Rams players held up their hands in support of Ferguson
protesters. What might happen this weekend in light of the Eric Garner
decision. John Carlos, Olympic medalist and activist will join me next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEFF FISHER, HEAD COACH, ST. LOUIS RAMS: This is my personal opinion. I
firmly believe that it`s important that I keep sports and politics
separate. I`m a head coach. I`m not a politician, an activist or an
expert on societal issues.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: For St. Louis Ram`s head coach Jeff Fisher, the message is clear,
sports and politics should be treated like church and state.
That may be because he`s aware of the backlash that can come from mixing
the two. Since five Rams players took the field last Sunday making the
hands up gesture, a show f solidarity with protesters over the shooting of
unarmed an Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson, there`s been a
from the St. Louis Police Association, the union that represents the city`s
officers. To them, the hands up gesture was an affront to those officers.
It called for the players to be disciplined.
And included this, quote, "I`d remind the NFL and their players that it is
not the violent thugs burning down buildings that buy their advertisers`
products, it`s cops and the good people of St. Louis and other NFL towns
that do that."
But NFL refused to discipline the Rams. And at least one player, Rams
tight end Jared Cook, says players have been threatened is not backing
According to the NBC`s Pro Football Talk, Cook said, "even though the Rams
have been criticized by local law enforcement and received threats that
he`d absolutely repeat the hands up, don`t shoot gesture,"
Which brings us to this weekend and the Rams game against that pro football
team in Washington, D.C. who everyone apparently forgot took the field
during a preseason game back in August making the hands up, don`t shoot
And with this Sunday being the first weekend of games since the decision in
the Eric Garner grand jury was announced, I`m anxious to see what happens
to see if there are any more displays of defiance and protest that strike a
cord the way this now iconic protest moment did in Mexico City when John
Carlos and Tommy Smith raised their fists in the air as the Star Spangled
Banner played during the medal ceremony at the 1968 Summer Olympics.
Let`s remember, just like some people view the Rams` players act of protest
as tasteless and offensive, there were those who viewed Smith and Carlos
with similar disdain.
Thanks to The Nation`s Dave Zirin we know at the time famed sports caster
Brent Musburger, who wasn`t a sports caster yet wrote, quote, "Smith and
Carlos look like a couple of black-skinned storm troopers holding aloft
their black gloved hands during the playing of the national anthem."
Joining me now is former Olympic athlete Dr. John Carlos.
Mr. Carlos, I want to hear your reaction to the backlash that those Rams
players have faced this week.
DR. JOHN CARLOS, FRM. OLYMPIC ATHLETE: Well, it`s relative to `68.
Backlash is because you did something that was necessary to do that the
general public might
not have been ready for. You know, when I sit back and look at the players
from St. Louis and all of those players in basketball and field and so
forth dealing with these issues, it reflects on John Carlos back 46 years
ago thinking to myself, boy if they think John Carlos and Tommy Smith and
Peter Norman were bad guys just wait for the next two generations.
And I believe that what you see in society today are just that, those
generations have come alive and you see it running rampant across the
United states and around the world now where people will start to say
enough is enough. And that`s basically what the Rams were saying, that`s
basically what the Clippers said relative to their former owner, the
atrocities that have been taking place, they`re not just merely thinking
about themselves as much as they`re thinking about their kids, their wives,
their brothers, their mothers and fathers.
HAYES: There`s a specific power here to an athlete able to kind of seize
the moment there a way because there are so many millions of people
watching him or here and people across the political spectrum. When you
did what you did in 1968, the backlash was fierce. I mean, we romanticize
it now, but at the time, it wasn`t
particularly celebrated across the spectrum at all.
CARLOS: Well, we didn`t have the media that we have now. You know, there
was many people that supported us, there was no way that this can be spread
through the nation in terms of people venting their feelings about what
took place in Mexico City.
HAYES: Do you think that athletes have more than just the freedom or
license to express themselves, but have some kind of affirmitive
responsibility to do what Jeff Fisher says they shouldn`t do, which is to
mix politics and sports or social stands that there`s some kind of
responsibility on them having the kind of platform they do to speak out?
CARLOS: Well, I don`t think they precluded from the first amendment
because they er athletes, you know, they`re not just paint on the all.
They are part of this society. They have emotions. They have concerns and
feelings about what is taking place in and around their environments.
HAYES: Recently, Charles Barkley who obviously is a sort of prominent
talking head and analyst and also basketball player, has had a lot to say
about the fallout from Ferguson. I wanted to play one clip of what he had
to say and sort of get your reaction. Here is Mr. Barkley.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHARLES BARKLEY, NBA ANALYST: There is profiling. We need to take a look
at racial profiling. But the truth of the matter is a lot of blacks in
some of these
neighborhoods are committing crimes. And we ask the cops to come in and
clean it up. And then if something goes wrong, we turn against the cops
and that`s 100 percent unfair. And we as black people, we`ve got to a much
better job ourselves. You know, we don`t hold each other accountable. We
don`t demand respect and higher standards from each other.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Your reaction to that, Mr. Carlos?
CARLOS: Well first of all, I would have to realize that the police
department is trained to protect and serve, but yet and still within that
protection and serving, they have these police come out to be very
aggressive, not all police. We have many good cops throughout this
country. But we have some that are overzealous.
Now if they`re training the police to come out and be aggressive when
they`re making these charges against these individuals, or who is training
the general public in terms of how we`re supposed to respond to police when
they come to you in a very aggressive manner, when they come to you with
more than one police police.
I remember when I was a young kid running up and down the streets of New
York, we used to have beat cops. We knew all the beat cops in the
community. We had respect and admiration for them and they showed respect
and admiration for the people in the city.
So once we get back to those grounds, we might have some peace and
understanding. But until that time where they keep just having these grand
juries and always turning up in a negative sense to defend these
individuals that`s doing these atrocities, the people are going to have
unrest until the laws are changed.
And I might add there`s always been the storm before the quiet.
HAYES: The storm before the quiet. John Carlos, thank you very much, sir.
I appreciate it.
CARLOS: Thank you.
HAYES: All right. Today seemed to be a massive step forward in NASA`s
long-term mission to put a person on Mars. So, why are some NASA insiders
saying Mars is never going to happen? That story next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Five, four, three, two, one. And liftoff at dawn. The
daw of Orion and a new era of American space exploration.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: In the next few generations, there will be human presence on Mars,
at least that`s the goal of NASA which took a stride toward getting there
with today`s successful test flight of the Orion Deep Space Capsule, NASA`s
spaceship of the future, which traveled more than 3600 miles above the
Earth, 15 times farther than the International Space Station, further from
our planet than any spacecraft designed for humans has gone in more than 40
Orion was launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida this
morning, just after sunrise, one day after high winds and technical issues
delayed a previous launch attempt.
During its four-and-a-half hour flight, the unmanned capsule made two laps
around the Earth, which think that four a second, four-and-a-half hours,
before it touched down in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Baja,
California in what NASA leaders described as a near-perfect mission.
This was the first of at least two planned unmanned test flights for Orion
with a manned mission envisioned by as early as the year 2021.
Today`s flight was used to test critical technologies including Orion`s
parachutes and the heat shield that protects the capsule from temperatures
as high as 4,000 degrees Fahrenheit upon reentry.
Well, Orion sent back striking images that were broadcast on NASA`s
website. And its successful test flight was celebrated as giving a much-
needed boost to space agency that has in recent years, had to grapple with
tighter budgets, diminished profile and questions about its long-term
But while this was a banner day for NASA, critics say the current
trajectory of the space program is deeply flawed and that the technology
being embraced on display today, the one to try to get to Mars, is the
result of a massive boondoggle
engineered by a Republican Senator.
We will talk to one of those critics, NASA`s former number tow
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARK GEYER, ORION PROGRAM MANAGER: It`s good to see you after the
successful mission. It`s hard to have a better day than today.
MIKE HAAS, LOCKHEAD MARTIN: We`ve kind of now done something for the first
time for our generation. It`s a good day.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYES: Officials with NASA and Lockheed Martin were thrilled and
overwhelmed after today`s successful unmanned test flight of the Orion Deep
Space Capsule, which NASA hopes will be able to take humans to Mars within
the next few decades.
Joining me now is a former NASA deputy administrator, Lori Garver.
Lori, I know you have got -- you have issues with this -- the way in which
the Mars program is unfolding, which I want to get to in a moment.
But I want to start with today, which did seem impressive, a good day.
Were there positives to come out of today?
LORI GARVER, FRM. NASA ADMINISTRATOR: Absolutely. Absolutely.
NASA and the Lockheed team had what just is a flawless flight, beautiful
launch, beautiful landing and doing it in a time when there`s a lot of
politics at play, partisan as well as parochial and they should be very
proud of what they achieve today.
So what`s your critique here? I`ve tried to kind of immerse myself in what
your problem is with the trajectory of it, but I feel like you`ll do a
better job explaining it. So, what`s wrong with the Mars plan that we have
in place now?
GARVER: Well, I believe that we have humanity going to Mars and NASA has
long-term goals of doing that. I think the characterization of this as a
massive leap and a first step is disingenuous.
We have been on this path for a long time. We have had a series of
successful rovers on Mars, we have an International Space Station where
astronauts are living and working in order to better understand how to live
and work in space for long duration missions.
But saying this test flight is like in 1960 the test flight before we went
to the moon. Three years later we were landing on the moon. We are at
least 20 years away from Mars. We don`t have the money or plans for
transfer vehicles. This vehicle can last only 21 days. There were no
people in it. And we`re hyping that it`s gone farthest of any mission
We have missions that robotic missions that have left the solar system. We
have a robot almost to Pluto. NASA is doing amazing things. This is a
small piece of it. It was a piece that was put in specifically after Obama
had cancelled it, because of jobs in people`s districts. It`s a valuable
thing to do. I just don`t believe it`s the most valuable aspect of the
many parts of NASA.
HAYES: So here`s my understand -- the short version. Barack Obama
basically cancels a planned moon mission which was going to be basically
done out of Huntsville, Alabama, which is where NASA has a big
headquarters. Then there was rebellion by people who represent Alabama and
they basically found a way through the budgeting process to get NASA to
adopt a technology for this kind of Mars mission, which uses stuff that
comes out of that same place, Huntsville, Alabama. And you`re basically
saying this was reverse engineered around making sure the technology and
the jobs were located in Huntsville?
GARVER: I would say broader than that, but that is a pretty s succinct way
to describe what happened. Add Texas, Florida, Colorado a bit. And you`ve
And these jobs are great jobs and people of NASA are doing a great job who
live in these states, but is this the way the space program used to be when
for the United States the space program represents the very best in us, our
aspirations as well as our economic leadership/ This isn`t the way to best
And I`m afraid we`re setting ourselves up to say we`re headed to Mars when
people find out that`s 20 years and $500 billion if you go about it in this
way. And I would hate for that to be the only symbol of NASA.
HAYES: Did you say 20 years and how much money?
GARVER: The last estimates of human trips to Mars are around $500 billion.
HAYES: $500 billion with a b.
HAYES: Oh, well we`re definitely on our way to full employment in
Richard Shelby says "without the kind of vision that brought us SLS and
Orion, the United States space program will be forever tethered to low
Earth orbit. Orion is the first step in achieving NASA`s goals for deep
space exploration." Ricahrd Shelby, one of the most outspoken advocates of
the current program. Former NASA deputy administrator Lori Garver, thank
you for your time. I really appreciate it.
That is All In for this evening.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY
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