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'The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell' for Monday, December 22nd, 2014

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Date: December 22, 2014
Guest: Jumaane Williams, Eugene O`Donnell, Brett Williams, Michael
Hiltzik, Michael Daly, Charlie Warzel

LAWRENCE O`DONNELL, MSNBC HOST: I was born into a police family, and we
were lucky, like most police families, because my father came home safely
from work every day and night, when he was a Boston police officer.

This weekend, in New York City, the nightmare that lurks in the backs of
the minds of every police family came true.


MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), NEW YORK: The attack on these two officers, the
assassination of these two officers was an attack on the city of New York
as a whole, on every one of us on our values, on our democracy.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The ambush-murders of two New York City police

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: New details have emerged about the shooter who had an
extensive history with the police.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Detectives say that the suspect had been arrested 19
times before this.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We know that he was arrested 19 times in Georgia and

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In the backdrop, the relationship between the mayor and
the NYPD.

BILL BRATTON, NYPD COMMISSIONER: There`s a lot going on in the NYPD at the

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A group of NYPD officers, they turned their backs on
the mayor in a public show of their frustration.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There has also been heated rhetoric exchanged between
police unions and politicians.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don`t know of any institution that at times does not
get criticized.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Both sides are hoping that the rhetoric calms down as
we move toward the funerals of these two fallen officers.

DE BLASIO: We as citizens need to step forward and act. I believe we`ll
overcome this.


O`DONNELL: On Saturday morning, Ismaaiyl Brinsley began his day intent on
killing someone. He broke into the apartment of Shaneka Thompson, his ex-
girlfriend, about 5:30 a.m. in Owings Mills, Maryland, just northwest of

Ms. Thompson immediately called her mother, and her mother overheard an
argument before the phone went dead.

The New York City chief of detectives told the story this way.


ROBERT BOYCE, NYPD CHIEF OF DETECTIVES: We spoke with his ex-girlfriend,
the lady he shot, and is very courageous young woman. She actually -- he
put the gun to his own head when he broke into her apartment and then she
talked him out of that, and he later shot her before he left.


O`DONNELL: Ismaaiyl Brinsley then made his way to the bus stop in
Baltimore and he calls Shaneka Thompson`s mother from Shaneka`s cellphone
at about 6:05 a.m. He apologized for shooting Shaneka by accident, he

Within a half an hour, the Baltimore police started tracking Shaneka
Thompson`s cell phone. They saw that it was moving north on Interstate 95.
At 10:45 a.m., the cell phone, Ismaaiyl Brinsley and his gun arrived in New
York City.

In New York, Brinsley started posting threatening messages about police on
Instagram. This is video of him still using his ex-girlfriend`s cell phone
at a Brooklyn mall.

At 12:07 p.m., he dropped the phone near the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
Police did everything they could on Saturday to track his movements, but
after he dropped that phone, police lost the trail.


BOYCE: We investigated this fully yesterday. Baltimore County Police
Department were made aware in around 1:30 in the afternoon on this threat
on the Instagram account by the victim`s the ex-girlfriend`s family. They
immediately got the information, call the 70 precinct, 70 precinct officer
did a great job. She immediately notified her sergeant. Her sergeant told
her to call intercity correspondence, as is our operating procedure.

All things were done exactly the way they were supposed to do. Within
about 45 minutes later, we had a document to move on this individual. One
minute after that document was faxed, the double homicide occurred. So,
there was no lapse on anybody`s part.


L. O`DONNELL: Joining me now is Jumaane Williams, councilman of district
45 in Brooklyn and Eugene O`Donnell, a former New York City police officer
and professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

Eugene, I want to talk to you about how this hits the police family.
You`re one of those guys, New York City police officer, like my father.
You then went on to get a law degree and get out of it. But you were in
that uniform long enough to know what this feels like in that department.

Tell us about the feelings that are hitting the New York City police
family. And then at what you imagine the situation is like now for the
families who suffered these losses.

unimaginable. But you could certainly say this is a very raw period and
very sad period beyond words. And you will never see the police more
together, more unaware of their race or their gender than you will at a
hospital, and you will see it this week on display.

You`re going to see the American police, the American law enforcement
establishment, come to our city in the next few days, stand in solidarity.
And, by the way, it`s worth noting as someone who`s done law enforcement in
New York, law enforcement all over the country routinely helps out this
city in so many ways, and they`ll come to honor our people as they did
after 9/11.

We reached out to the smallest towns, smallest villages, the troopers,
federal agents to help us in ways big and small. And this week, the city
will grieve, and you`ll see law enforcement and American law enforcement at
its best.

L. O`DONNELL: Mr. Williams, obviously we all know that there are problems
in policing in New York City just as there are problems everywhere. There
are complaints just as there are complaints everywhere, but there is a
unique bond in addition to all that in New York City, between the residents
and police officers, especially since 9/11. That is a unique experience
that occurred only in that city. And I feel like some of the sensations of
that experience are now returning this weekend.

JUMAANE WILLIAMS, COUNCILMAN (D-BROOKLYN): Well, first of all, I want to
make sure that we always take note of the two human beings that died. One
was a father and husband. One was a two-month newly wed. These weren`t
just uniforms. These are people who have families, who are now in mourning
during Christmastime and New Year`s, when people are normally celebrating.

I believe the connection is still there between communities and police, but
that`s not to say there`s not some issue that people want and have a right
to get addressed. And I think as we go forward with discourse on how to do
that, we have the members of this tragedy, this heinous act in our minds as
we go forward for important discourse. It`s happening not just in New York
City but actually across the country.

L. O`DONNELL: Eugene, talk about this, this form of death is the one that
is actually the least likely in police experience, just the execution.
Just, there has been very few of these over time. This is not the way
police die in the lean of duty normally, but it is absolutely the worst
way, because this is the one where it is absolutely true to say, this could
have happened to absolutely any member of the NYPD on this Saturday.

E. O`DONNELL: Right, which, again, I think we all get a chance to step
into each other`s shoes here. A lot was made about what the PBA president
said. We have to remind ourselves, the PBA president was standing in a
hospital where two of his members and really symbolically all of his
members have been killed. This wasn`t about those two individuals. It was
about the job that they had.

So, I`m not trying to interject the substance of what he said, but the
emotions and raw feelings about it, you know, we should have an ability to
step into the shoes of the officers, and if you`re not a police officer,
obviously hanging over all of this is the race relations and the

I hear people say the president should be able to talk about race relations
without acting like he`s an African-American. I mean, we want to have an
authentic dialogue in the country. So, let`s have an authentic dialogue in
the country.

L. O`DONNELL: What Eugene is referring to is the leader of the police
patrolman`s union over the weekend said something about responsibility for
this lying within the mayor`s office and there being blood in the mayor`s

And the mayor, actually, has said that we should be able to get past that,
because that was said, as Eugene just mentioned in a very passionate

I want to show something that the mayor said today about the question of
what is his relationship like now with the police departments. And he
talked about how much he`s actually invested, extra invested in safety of
officers. Let`s listen to that.


DE BLASIO: I need to support them regardless of what they feel. And I
have. Commissioner will tell you about almost $400 million in additional
investment we`ve put into the safety of our officers, beyond that which was
in the budget in June. The almost $400 million we`ve added since, to
protect our officers. Actions speak louder than words.


L. O`DONNELL: And just before we address this, I want to add to it what
Commissioner Bill Bratton said about this very same point.


BRATTON: Do some officers not like this mayor? Guaranteed. Some officers
not like me. Amazingly, some don`t. I can`t quite understand that, but
some don`t.

Some of you have been around this town for a while. Can you point out to
me one mayor that has not been battling with the police unions in the last
50 years? Name one. Name one.


L. O`DONNELL: Mr. Williams, what was your reaction to that part of the
press conference today?

WILLIAMS: One, I think what`s important to remember is the Ramos family
found amazing strength to forgive and ask that we move forward civilly.
Members of the Eric Garner and Mike Brown family have asked something

So I think we need to keep that in mind as we`re going forward. Some of
the rhetoric might have been emotional, it`s unwarranted. Some of that
rhetoric was happening before this heinous act.

And I think what`s happening is people are confusing two different things.
They`re confusing people saying we want police in our communities. We also
want to have just policing and better policing. They`re confusing that
with someone saying that we`re anti-cop or anti-police. And I don`t think
that anyone can point to anything that the mayor has said, the council
speaker or the councilmen have said that are actually anti-police.

I think people have talked about reform for sometime. So, I`m happy that
the mayor is continuing and pointing out the specific things that he`s done
and my hope is that all involved will take a step back and say, let`s
discuss this in a better way that actually moves us forward and doesn`t
keep the friction going.

L. O`DONNELL: Eugene, as I was watching it today, I just keep thinking
that this was the police commissioner that this city needed on this day.

E. O`DONNELL: Oh, boy, Lawrence, you thought of that ahead (ph). I know
there are people of different political persuasions that are not Bill
Bratton fans, the cops are Bill Bratton fans. And if you were here in this
city when they had an organization called the transit police, which was
demoralized, underfunded terribly mistreated organization, that was
Bratton`s finest hour.

So, the cops will go 100 miles to this commissioner and these difficult
circumstances, if you have one person to pick, he`s not always going to
make people happy. He tells you what he feels, but you can`t think of a
better police chief, certainly, who knows the police business and really
doesn`t, doesn`t really, you know, understands what the police do from the
ground up, that he`s person.

L. O`DONNELL: Mr. Williams, I want to go back to the individual whose were
killed. I`m going to talk about them more in the program in more detail.
But here is the model that we`ve all been wanting to see of community
policing. Here are two officers who live in Brooklyn. They are policing
Brooklyn. They are both from different minorities that live in Brooklyn,
Officer Liu, Officer Ramos.

This is exactly what you`ve wanted, I`m sure, in your district.

WILLIAMS: From all I`ve heard, these were not just wonderful police
officers but wonderful human beings who were doing the job that was asked
of them, doing the job asked of their community. And I don`t think anyone
has said anything besides that.

But I think you have touched on something, that we need community policing
in the truest form. We have to make sure that we are not unfair to police
officers as them as the only resource. We need other agencies to get
involved. We need the youth agencies, the Department of Health, Department
of Education, all of these services should be working together in tandem.
And I think that will be a great benefit moving forward.

L. O`DONNELL: New York City Councilman Jumaane Williams and former NYPD
officer, Eugene O`Donnell -- thank you both for joining me tonight.

WILLIAMS: Thank you.

E. O`DONNELL: Thank you.

L. O`DONNELL: Coming up, powerful tribute to the slain officer Rafael
Ramos by his teenage son.

But first, is North Korea right now in the middle of a counterattack? The
country has been cut off from the Internet for hours. The former director
of U.S. Cyber Command will join me.


O`DONNELL: One Republican not returning to the Senate next year is Senator
Tom Coburn. He ended his term two years early after disclosing he was
diagnosed with prostate cancer. Senator Coburn entered the Senate the same
year that Barack Obama entered the Senate. And two became friends.

Last night on "60 Minutes", Senator Coburn talked about his friend, Barack


SEN. TOM COBURN (R), OKLAHOMA: My relationship with Barack Obama isn`t
base on my political philosophy or his.

LESLEY STAHL, CBS NEWS: What`s it based on?

COBURN: It`s based on the fact that I think he`s a genuinely very smart,
nice guy. I just love him as a man. I think he`s a neat man. You know,
you don`t have to be the same to be friends. As a matter of fact, the more
interesting friendships are the ones that are divergent.

I`m proud of our country that we elected Barack Obama. I mean, it says
something about us nationally. You know, it`s kind of like crowning your
checker when you get to the end of the checkerboard. Here`s another thing
that says America`s special -- Barack Obama, president of the United


O`DONNELL: Coming up, we have breaking news from North Korea. North Korea
has lost access to the internet. That`s next.



of war. I think it was an act of cyber vandalism that was very costly,
very expensive. We take it very seriously. We will respond
proportionately, as I said.


O`DONNELL: And so, North Korea experienced widespread Internet outages for
several hours today, after President Obama has twice said that the United
States would respond proportionately to North Korea`s cyber attack. Two
government officials deny any U.S. role in today`s outage.

This afternoon, a U.S. State Department spokeswoman said this.


MARIE HARF, STATE DEPT. SPOKESWOMAN: We aren`t going to discuss, you know,
publicly operational details about possible response options, or comments
on those kind of reports in any way, except to say that as we implement our
responses, some will be seen. Some may not be seen.


O`DONNELL: While North Korea continues to deny any involvement in the Sony
cyberattacks, Senator John McCain, who will take over as chairman of the
Armed Services Committee next month, called North Korea`s action a new form
of warfare.


SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: The president does not understand that this
is a new -- this is a manifestation of a new form of warfare. When you
destroy economies, when you are able to impose censorship on the world, and
especially the United States of America, it`s more than vandalism. It`s a
new form of warfare that we`re involved in, and we need to react and react


O`DONNELL: Joining me now is retired Major General Brett Williams, the
former director of operations for U.S. Cyber Command and the former
director for U.S. Pacific Command, and Michael Hiltzik, Pulitzer Prize-
winning business columnist for "The Los Angeles Times".

Is this a new form of warfare? Or is this cyber vandalism?

believer that war has an enduring nature. And I think the best way to
think about cyber space operations is that cyber provides us with a new
domain, a new environment, if you will, to exercise the elements of
national power.

But the characteristics of nation state competition and economic
competition, they have been constant for at least 100 years.

What we have to do is we`ve got to figure out what are the implications of
people being able to operate in cyber space, how does that impact our
national security policy, and how do we, then adjust our policies to ensure
that we`ve defined appropriate red lines, we`ve established conditions for
deterrence, and that we`re able to leverage cyberspace with all our other
elements of national power in order to make an appropriate response.

And I think if we start to do that, that starts to take a little bit of
mystery out of cyber and allows us to put it into a context that makes it a
bit more holistic as we deal with the problem.

O`DONNELL: General, what`s your reading of what happened in North Korea
today where they lost internet service?

WILLIAMS: Well, with the obvious caveat that I have no direct information
in terms of what activities were taken today, I do have experience with
being part of those discussions in terms of options, and I would say it`s
unlikely that this was the result of U.S. action for a couple of reasons.
I think, for one, it`s not a proportional response that would necessarily
create the type of impact we`d want on the North Korean leadership.

But more from my direct experience as, in Cyber Command, we would look for
something that was, I would say, much more sophisticated, much more
targeted, something that would generate an effect that would be more likely
to target the leadership directly. And I just think that that this type of
a broad-based impact on their Internet, if that`s in fact what happened is
less likely to have come from the planning at cyber command.

O`DONNELL: Let`s listen to what Michael Lynton, the head of Sony, said
about this.


MICHAEL LYNTON, SONY PICTURES CEO: I would make the movie again. I think
for the same reasons we made it in the first place. It was a funny comedy.
It served as political satire. I think we would have made the movie again.

I -- knowing what I know now, we might have done some things slightly
differently. We would still like the public to see this movie, absolutely.
We have to explore options as to how that might happen, because while
everybody says release it digitally, do it on VOD, do this, do that, all of
these things are in their own way complicated.


O`DONNELL: Michael, here in Los Angeles, everyone`s wondering what`s going
on in Sony, because last week, it sounded like, when they`ve -- not only
did they pull the movie but they put out a press release saying, have no
plans for any form of release. And then, there was the public threat sent
to them, saying if you release -- we want you to pull down everything
anywhere on the Internet that has anything to do with this movie and then
we`ll stop attacking you.

And now, this week, it sounds like there`s a new fight, there`s a new
spirit of fight at Sony over this.

MICHAEL HILTZIK, THE LOS ANGELES TIMES: I think what we`ve seen is the
effect of time. I think as the days go on and the reaction comes in, the
reaction not only from the creative community in Hollywood, but from
moviegoers and pundits and everybody else, I think it`s beginning to seem
more and more that Sony may have overreacted by completely pulling this
movie, talking about maybe never showing it ever.

So, I think we will see "The Interview" at some point. I think we will
probably see it through, through the imprimatur of Sony. They could put it
out -- they have their own digital streaming service. It`s called Crackle.
They own it. They could put that movie out if they want.

I`m sure there are contractual issues that they will have to work out, but
I think we`ll be seeing "The Interview", and probably not very long from

O`DONNELL: General, if they put this out on Crackle, won`t that invite the
North Koreans to take down Crackle?

WILLIAMS: Well, I think that`s a possibility, but what you have to keep in
mind is this particular cyber attack, as would be true with anything that
was this extensive and this effective, would take weeks, if not months of
planning. And so, their ability to shift this quickly and take down
something like Crackle, unless they`ve been planning this for quite some
time, I think is unlikely.

In addition, I`m positive that Sony has taken quite a few measures in the
recent few days in order to make themselves more resilient and better able
to defend against this type of attack.

O`DONNELL: And, Michael, as far as how this town is reacting, George
Clooney couldn`t get anyone who he wanted to sign his petition. He wasn`t
looking for just other actors. He was looking for real power players and
people who run studios to sign the petition saying, we should fight this,
last week. He couldn`t get anyone. Is that mood changing here in Los

HILTZIK: I think it`s changing a bit. I think probably, the idea of going
to studios and certainly exhibiters, movie house chains, they`re probably
not well cast, could be the bulwarks in favor of free speech and the First
Amendment. They really are about their business model. And their business
model is presenting movies and not -- not subjecting their audiences to a

So, I`m not really surprised. But I think it really was a shame, a shame
for the industry that they could not come together and have a stronger
statement through the Motion Picture Associate of America that George
Clooney could not get anyone to sign his petition.

O`DONNELL: This is when this town misses Lou Wasserman, someone who had a
grip on the entire industry.

HILTZIK: Let`s face it, somebody with power and respect.

O`DONNELL: There isn`t that central figure anymore.

HILTZIK: Not anymore.

O`DONNELL: Major General Brett Williams and Michael Hiltzik, thank you
both very much for joining me tonight.

HILTZIK: My pleasure.

WILLIAMS: Thank you.

O`DONNELL: Coming up, the dramatic, minute by minute story of the
emergency medical technicians who arrived on the scene of that double
murder of two NYPD officers.


O`DONNELL: In the "Spotlight" tonight, The Miracle that Didn`t Happen.
This is new video of the effort to save the lives of Officers Liu and Ramos
on the corner of Tompkins and Myrtle Avenues Saturday afternoon. The EMTs
there needed a miracle. You can see the first ambulance to arrive on the

Michael Daly tells the dramatic story of what happened when that ambulance
arrived, in an article in "The Daily Beast" entitled "Please Don`t Die: The
Frantic Battle to Save Murdered Cops." And joining me now is Michael Daly,
Special Correspondent for "The Daily Beast." Michael, I want you to take
your time and tell us this story of these amazing volunteers -- and they
are volunteers, --


O`DONNELL: -- the people who arrived in that first ambulance, and what
they encountered.

DALY: They`re people of the neighborhood, and who work for nothing and
they`re only -- just for the sole goal of saving lives. And they were they
were at their base on -- they had a rough night the night before. They
lost somebody and they take that hard. And one of them was at a deli
nearby and he heard a call on the police scanner, "Officer down, 1013.
Officer down, 1013."

He went running out of that deli and he ran into that base. And there`s --
Tantania Alexander was there. This first young -- I`m sorry, this first
gentleman is Barron Johnson.

He goes in and there`s Tantania Alexander there, and he says, "We`ve got an
officer down. We`ve got an officer down." They hop in that ambulance and
start going out, with Barron at the wheel.

There`s a gentleman, Pedro. I don`t know who`s with him, who`s in the
front of the base.

He hops in. They go down Myrtle avenue. And as they`re going, they hear,
"Two officers shot. Clear rush on the bus," a bus being an ambulance.
They hear that, and they know things are bad. And the traffic is up ahead,
it blocked up. They`ve got to weave in and out.

And they pull up and see a bunch of police cars. They`re not really sure
what`s going on. And they see one officer frantically waving for them to
turn onto Tompkins place.

And they turn. And there they are, the first ambulance, the only
ambulance. And there`s a police car with two gravely wounded officers in
the front seat.

The question is, who do you attend to first. So, they say, "Who`s hurt
worse?" And they`re told both officers are shot in the head and both
aren`t breathing.

So, they split up. And Ms. Alexander and Mr. Donovan (ph) take the officer
on the passenger side, Officer Liu. And Barron Johnson takes -- he starts
trying to work with Officer Ramos behind the driver`s wheel.

And in it both instances, they touched the carotid artery to see if there`s
a pulse. And neither case was there`s no pulse. And officers are
screaming, "Get them out. Get them out of the car."

And they helped Johnson ease Ramos out of the car. He`s lying on his back
with a terrible head wound. And Mr. Johnson would later describe to us,
pressing down on that chest, trying to bring life back.

And he`s looking down in this cop`s eyes and this cop is staring right back
at him. And all Johnson wants is just to see the tiniest sign of life,
just a blink.

And he`s saying, "Blink. If you can hear me, just blink. If you have
anything you can move, move. Please just," you know, "blink, please,

And he keeps praying and he keeps pushing and he keeps praying and he keeps
pushing. And there`s nothing. And, that point, the Fire Department
ambulance arrives and they start assisting.

They take over with Officer Liu. And the other two members of the Bedford
Stuyvesant Volunteer Ambulance Corps come over and they`re helping Barron

And they get the officer on a backboard and they get him into the
ambulance. And Barron hops behind the wheel again. And a cop hops in with
Ms. Alexander in the back.

And as they`re going to the hospital, the cop takes over the CPR. And he`s
giving CPR and he`s screaming, "Ramos, Ramos, Ramos!" And there`s no

And they get to the hospital and they`ve done everything they possibly
could. And they keep doing everything they possibly can. And they do
whatever the doctors need.

And they keep there. And, finally, there comes moment when they see the
doctor shake his head. And then they know what that means.

And the one moment that stays with me is that moment when this 28-year-old
volunteer from Bedford Stuyvesant Corps gazing down into the eyes of Police
Officer Rafael Ramos, just praying, just to see a single blink of the eye.

O`DONNELL: And, Michael, you talk about these people who`ve had these
experiences as EMTs on the street. They were reduced to tears after this.

DALY: I mean -- and, you know, Barron Johnson is not -- you know, he`s a
tough enough guy. And he has seen a lot of people hurt, and he has lost
people before.

But this one really, I think, worked on him. And he was in tears.
And he said Ms. Alexander was even worse.

And I saw her later by the scene. And she was just hurt as deep as you
could be.

O`DONNELL: And, Michael, the -- you tell this story with an incredible
closeness, as I read it today and I want people to hear. I hope they go
and read it, because what you`re seeing is people who, as soon as they see
what they have, they -- somewhere inside them, they know this is hopeless.

There`s a voice in them that`s saying, "This is hopeless." But they don`t
let that voice win. They stay at it, and they hope for that miracle.

DALY: I think, you know, the miracle -- I mean, you can say there was no
miracle here. But, in a sense, there was a miracle.

And, in some ways, it`s the same miracle we saw on 9/11 in New York, is
that absolute evil appeared and did terrible things. And absolute good
responded. And, to me, that was the miracle here.

O`DONNELL: Beautifully put. Michael Daly, thank you very, very much for
joining us today.

DALY: Thank you.

O`DONNELL: We`ll be right back.



B.J. WILKINSON, POLICE CHIEF, SIDNEY, NEBRASKA: It`s doubled our workload.
It`s a significant impact on the entire judicial system. Guess who pays
for that, you and I, the taxpayers do.


O`DONNELL: That`s the police chief of Sidney, Nebraska. Population,
6,829. Sidney is right across the border from Colorado.

And Chief Wilkinson says legal marijuana in Colorado is causing all sorts
of problems for him and his community. Now, Nebraska and Oklahoma have
filed suits against Colorado in the first major court challenge to that
state`s legalization of recreational marijuana. The lawsuit alleges
Colorado has created a dangerous gap in the Federal Drug Control System and
is asking the Supreme Court to overturn the law.

Colorado`s Attorney General has two months to respond to the lawsuit. The
pot industry is now big business in Colorado.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE 1: It`s a jungle, baby.

NARRATOR: Land of the legal weed.


NARRATOR: And home to America`s latest billion-dollar industry --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 3: This is part of history because what is the end of
alcohol prohibition mean to that generation. Dynasties, right?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE 1: I took everything I had, 401s, IRAs, and dropped it
into this.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 4: I feel like we`re in the in a once-in-a-lifetime
position right now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 5: Every state is looking at this. The demand really is
that much higher than the supply.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 6: We grew close to a thousand percent last year.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 7: This year, we`re going to do 12 million.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 8: I`m talking all chips in.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE 1: I hate to fail.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE 7: We want to be the Costco of marijuana.


O`DONNELL: You can see "Pot Barons of Colorado: The Grand Experiment"
tonight, right after this program on MSNBC. Up next, the "Rewrite"


"If I don`t do it, and you don`t do it, then who`s going to do it?"
According to a friend of Officer Wenjian Liu, that is why Officer Liu
joined the NYPD.

In today`s "New York Times," Officer Liu`s friend quoted as saying, "I know
that being a cop is dangerous, but I must do it. If I don`t do it, and you
don`t do it, then who is going to do it?" That is how heroes decide what
they`re going to do with their lives -- "If I don`t do it, who is going to
do it."

Officer Liu`s parents were described by a friend in "The New York Times"
today as completely distraught. They have been repeating over and over,
"My son is gone."

The Liu family came to New York from China when Wenjian was 12 years old,
not speaking a word of English. Wenjian then went to Lafayette High School
and learned English there.

Seven years ago, at the age of 25, Wenjian Liu, took the New York City
Police Oath of Office, "I do hereby pledge and declare to uphold the
Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of New
York and faithfully discharge my duties as a New York City police officer,
to do best of my ability, so help me, God."

By all accounts, Wenjian Liu stayed true to that oath in service to his

As he sat in his patrol car Saturday afternoon in Brooklyn, he and his
partner, Rafael Ramos, were a model of community police, two police
officers from two different minorities, who lived in Brooklyn, serving and
protecting Brooklyn until they were killed by shots they probably never saw

If Wenjian Liu had lived just one more day, he would have made it to his
three-month wedding anniversary.

Three hundred guests squeezed into the Super Lucky Seafood Restaurant on
8th Avenue in Brooklyn, three months ago, and filled 30 tables in
celebration of Wenjian Liu and Pei Xia Chen.

Today, at the end of her third day as a widow, Officer Liu`s wife spoke
publicly for the first time.


would like to express our gratitude and appreciation to the police
department, our neighbors, the entire New York City community, friends, and
coworkers, for the help and support they provide.

We would also like to express our condolence to the officer and close
family. This is a difficult time for both of our families. But we will
stand together and get through this together. Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Do you have any funeral arrangements?

PEI XIA CHEN: We will tell you when --



O`DONNELL: Rafael Ramos worked for 14 years for Airborne Express DHL,
delivering packages, before joining the NYPD three years ago. He was older
than most recruits in his class in the Police Academy and, no doubt,
probably a bit wiser than most. Some NYPD officers have doubled their
salaries by putting in overtime.

But a friend of Officer Ramos told "The New York Times" that Officer Ramos
didn`t really want to do much overtime. He was always looking forward to
going home to see his sons.

On his 40th birthday a few weeks ago, his 13-year-old son, Jaden Ramos,
posted this on Facebook -- "Happy Birthday to the best dad in the world.
You are always there for me even when it`s almost impossible."

"We have so many good times, it`s not even funny. I love you so much.
How does it feel to be 40? You`re getting old, dad, but you still look
good. Hope you have the best birthday. You deserve it."

Officer Ramos` oldest son, Justin, is a sophomore at Bowdoin College in
Maine. Bowdoin College has announced that Justin will not be charged
tuition, room and board for his remaining years at Bowdoin.

Officer Ramos` widow has not spoken publicly, but his Aunt Lucy Ramos said
this --


all those who have shared their sympathy and support for our beloved family
member, Rafael Ramos, who will always be loved and missed by many.

I hope and pray that we can reflect on this tragic loss of lives that have
occurred, so that we can move forward and find an amicable path to a
peaceful coexistence.

We would like to extend our condolences to the Liu Family also. Thank you.


O`DONNELL: On Saturday, a few hours after learning that his father was
killed in the line of duty, Jaden Ramos posted this on Facebook, "Today, I
had to say bye to my father. He was there for me every day of my life. He
was the best father I could ask for. It` s horrible that someone gets shot
dead just for being a police officer."

"Everyone says they hate cops, but they are the people that they call for
help. I will always love you, and I will never forget you. R.I.P., Dad."

New York City`s Mayor and Police Commissioner went to mass together
yesterday at St. Patrick`s Cathedral. Cardinal Timothy Dolan asked them to
deliver this message to the NYPD "Would you tell your officers that God`s
people gathered at St. Patrick`s Cathedral this morning, thundered with
prayer with and for them. We love them very much."

"We mourn with them. We need them. We respect them. And we`re proud of
them. And we thank them."


O`DONNELL: So far, this holiday season, thanks to your kindness and
generosity, we have raised a total of $569,361 for the K.I.N.D. Fund, Kids
in Need of Desks. That brings the total to raised for desks and for
scholarships for girls to attend high school in Malawi to $8,186,126.

Penny twitted, "Shopping done. No mall, no wrapping, no mailing --
donation of two years education for a special in Malawi."

Brenda Stewart Reader wrote on Facebook, "I just donated two double desks
again this year. Thank you for bringing this to light, Lawrence. You
bring it up every night during the Christmas Season. I know what I want
for Christmas every year."

Now, if you`re bored by my repeatedly talking about the K.I.N.D. Fund, I
apologize. But if you want to help, you can go to the
LASTWORDDESKS.MSNBC.COM or you can call 1-800 and number 4, and then the
word, UNICEF.

Up next, controlling recreational drones.


O`DONNELL: The Federal Aviation Administration has partnered with the
drone industry and hobby groups to launch a safety campaign called, "Know
Before You Fly."

The campaign was created in response to recent close calls between drones
and commercial aircraft, and also because of the rise in drone sales this
holiday holiday season.

Here`s` more of the FAA`s new video on how to safely fly a drone if you


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE NARRATOR: How do you make sure you stay off the
naughty list? We want you to know before you fly.

It`s time to have fun with your new unmanned aircraft, but to protect other
people and other aircraft in the sky, you need to learn to fly safely.
Here are some best practices.

Do fly your unmanned aircraft below 400 feet. Don`t fly your unmanned
aircraft beyond your line of sight. Do fly with local club. Don`t fly
near airports or any manned aircraft.

Do take a lesson before you fly. Don`t fly near people or stadiums. Do
inspect your aircraft before you fly. Don`t fly anything that weighs more
than 55 pounds.

What weighs 55 pounds? Ralph, the world`s largest funny rabbit. Do fly
for fun. Don`t fly for payment or commercial purposes unless specifically
authorized by the FAA.

Don`t be careless or reckless. You could you be fined if you endanger
people or other aircraft. Do be safe. And know before you fly.

You now have the rules of the air to enjoy your cool new gift.


O`DONNELL: Joining me now is "BuzzFeed" Tech Editor Charlie Warzel.
Charlie, so hi. I opened up my new drone on Christmas morning and it says
-- one of the things they say is, "Take a lesson."

Now, where do I get my lesson in flying drones.

CHARLIE WARZEL, TECH EDITOR, "BUZZFEED": Well, you kind of have to just do


And you need a safe space for That. But that video is so interesting to

It`s like the dystopian future is here now. And it kind of sounds like an
airline, like an in-flight checklist.

O`DONNELL: Well, Charlie, it has that wonderful quality of being the real
video that they`ve put out. And yet, it looks like the joke video that
someone put out about their mocking the video that they put out. But it`s
actually theirs.

WARZEL: Exactly. It`s wild. But, no, you should -- I mean, you should
definitely do all those things. Right now, there`s a real strange legal
gray area, especially with hobbyists.

You know, like the FAA is not really going after and finding them. But,
also, you know, there`s been a lot of -- the FAA released a document with
close calls that some drones have come near commercial airlines.

If you fly and have a close call with a commercial airline, you could
really get nailed with a big fine for sure.

O`DONNELL: Charlie, if you pick one thing, like one thing you think a
drone is actually useful reason to have it, what would that be.

WARZEL: Amateur photography. I mean, you can --


WARZEL: -- get amazing things out of it.

O`DONNELL: All right, amateur photography it is, Charlie Warzel. They
should have put that in there. This is really the only reason you should
get it.


O`DONNELL: Thanks very much for joining us tonight, Charlie.

WARZEL: No problem.

O`DONNELL: Up next, MSNBC brings you to Colorado and the "Pot Barons of


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