tv ABC7 News Getting Answers ABC July 26, 2022 3:00pm-3:30pm PDT
>> this is abc 7 news. >> you're watching getting answers live on abc 7. we are asking experts your question every day at 3:00 to get answers. for you in real time. today people are questioning whether school leader should resign over offensive comments. why the asian american community is divided. we will talk to a reporter. also, we have seen video of several seal and sea lion attacks lately. is this normal, and what do you do if you end up in this situation? a doctor joins us to discuss.
first, from california's new gun legislation, to what our state is doing to protect abortion rights, and california's response to monkeypox. the status on getting more vaccines. joining us live is lieutenant governor to discuss all the topics. thank you so much for being here. >> great to be with you. >> let's start with california's new gun legislation. it models the new -- it authors private citizens to file private lawsuits against gun sellers. summer questioning, could this backfire if it is challenged in court? >> first of all, i think it is helpful for people to know that california has some of the strongest done safety laws in the country. in our state it is illegal to buy assault weapons. you have to be 21 to get a gun. we have background checks that
are mandatory for everyone. 10 day weight periods. all kinds of things we have in place to have sensible gun control in our state so this latest law, as you noted, is basically written in a way that parallels the law in texas around restricting a woman's right to choose. so this creates a legal parallel that will make it so that the supreme court should not be able to say one is constitutional and the other is not. so this is a very smart way to really challenge the supreme court such that they have to be consistent with their interpretation of certain rights under the constitution. karina: we heard the governor talk about that, and why we passed this law. now, talking about the supreme court, the recent decision by the supreme court to overturn
roe v. wade. in california it is still legal to get an abortion. governor newsom says he wants to help attacked all women in california and even the people who come here from out of state. what is the plan for california to do this? >> as you noted, it is really important that people know even though the supreme court overturned roe v. wade, which takes away a key right at the constitutional level for the country, here in california it is illegal to access abortion. now, what we are doing in this state is many different things in order to be able to ensure that california has strongest possible laws going into the future. first and foremost people should be ready that in november we have put on the ballot a constitutional amendment to our state constitution that will ensure a woman's right to choose and a woman's right to access birth control. so that is really important.
people should look for that on their ballot in in november when they get those in the mail. but there are all kinds of things we are doing. 14 laws going through the assembly right now. some of them have already made their way through. they will make it more affordable and accessible for women to access this important health care right. but also, that will make it so that if women do come here from states that, for instance, their information can remain private. those kinds of things that really were unthinkable several years ago, but now are very important, not just to protect california women, but to protect women elsewhere in the country you need to come here in order to exercise their right to make their decisions for their bodies. karina: we have already seen some women cross state lines to be able to access abortion. can you talk about what california is going to do as we see an influx of more people
crossing state lines here to be able to receive that health service? lt. gov. kounalakis: we have allocated some state funds to go to help prepare and expand access, not just for people coming from out of state, but for californians here already. but it is going to take a lot of help from the private sector, a lot of help from philanthropy, in order to help make sure that we have as much capacity here as possible. we don't really know how many women might have to come here. but it may be a lot. so we are going to do what we can at the state level but also we are really calling for from land to press in the private sector to help as well. karina: we have a lot to get through today. let's talk about covid-19. we have seen so many cases of the ba.5 variant. can you talk about what is the
latest in our state when it comes to battling covid-19, as we continue to do so? lt. gov. kounalakis: well, you know, we've been saying this for 2.5 years. we know so much more about covid today than we did in the past. we have life-saving vaccines. so it is really important so people get vaccinated and get booster shots. we also have accessible testing. and so making sure that if you think you have contracted covid that you go in you take a test to be sure. and if you have it, to stay home and slow and stop the spread. it is all the same protocols we have had these last couple of years. wearing a mask if you are immunocompromised, wearing a mask if you think that you might be going into a place where you might catch it. those kind of very basic protocols are still as important as ever. nothing is more important than getting vaccinated and getting those booster shots. karina: speaking of getting
vaccinated, we have been covering the monkeypox vaccine shortage. zuckerberg san francisco general hospital closed the vaccine clinic yesterday and today because they are not enough vaccines. what is the biggest holdup in getting these here in california, and what is the plan moving forward? lt. gov. kounalakis: well ka rina, i think here in california and across the country, people are so much more aware of infectious diseases than we ever have been. so all of this tension around monkeypox really has to do with the fact we are just more a lot more attuned and aware of the kinds of viruses that are out there that people might be able to catch. monkeypox is very different from covid good what we know about -- from covid. what we know about it is that you catch it from very close personal contact. at this point in california, and it is county by county, but if
people think that they might be more likely to catch monkeypox, and you can talk to your doctor to see if that applies to you, you are able to find out if you are eligible for a vaccine. but as we know, there are limited numbers of this vaccine available. so at the state level we are pushing very hard to get vaccines into our counties and our hospitals, but for individuals who think that they might be vulnerable to monkeypox or more likely to catch it, they need to talk to their doctor and make sure they have signed up in order to be able to get a vaccine when they are available. karina: very tough to get that vaccine right now for many people. we only have a few minutes left with you unfortunately, but i wanted to ask about your political future, assuming governor new -- governor newsom wins in november. that would be his second and last term. would you consider running for governor? lt. gov. kounalakis: well karin
a, i did not know you are going to ask me that question. but i am on the ballot right now as well as the governor. so, november 8 is the gubernatorial election. a lot of really important things will be on the ballot. i will be on the ballot for reelection. i am very helpful that -- very hopeful that california will semi-back to my office for another four years. aftrer that, we just have to tae it one election at a time. but i love my job and i am very honored and proud to serve the people of california. karina: you also made history this year in march. you became the first woman in california history decided of legislation into law. can you talk about that moment and what it meant for you? lt. gov. kounalakis: i am the first woman elected lieutenant governor in the state of california history, so it's been an incredible opportunity to be able to be an example of a glass ceiling breaker. and the opportunities like the
one that you mentioned are very humbling to me. there have been women in california aching history around legislation, advocating for legislation, writing legislation. in our legislature, we have senators and assembly members who do this work all the time. but as you noted, i was the first one when the governor was out-of-state to actually sign a bill into law. we need more of that. i think most californians agree that people representation in government and business in the highest levels of every aspect of our society is really important to better outcomes for everybody. so, again, as i mentioned, it is just a real privilege to serve and to serve in this role. karina: thank you so much, lieutenant governor. it has been a pleasure talking with you, and we will follow up very soon. lt. gov. kounalakis: thank you so much for having me. karina: a controversy with a san francisco school board member over her comments that some have called racist, and have led to
♪ call one eight hundred, eight million karina: now to controversy surrounding san francisco school board member ann shu. some say she should resign over her recent offensive comments. joining us live is s.f. standard reporter han li to dive into this. thank you so much for being with us again. first, let's talk about those comments. get us up to speed as to how we got here, and why people are calling for her to resign. >> yes. so, this is the latest san francisco school board drama. what happened was a week ago, this controversial comment from
the school board member was presented, and was talked about in social media and in the press. so, what happened was the school board member was answering a question, and the question was how the school district can help improve the academic performance for the most marginalized students, and her answer was, one of the biggest challenges she saw on the black and brown families was those children had a lack of family support. so those comments are being considered stereotyping of black and brown families. a lot of criticism came, asking for her to resign. karina: she did apologize, but as of today, any signs of her planning to step down from her position? >> as far as i know she has been talking with multiple community members that she will stay in
office. also there are increasing calls from elected officials and committee groups asking her to resign. so we will see what happens soon. karina: your article in the s.f. standard talks about how the asian-american community is divided on this. can you dig into that a little bit? what has been the response on those sides, those who say she apologized, we are good to go, and those who say no, it is time to step down, you went too far? han: the asian-american community has really divided opinions on whether she should resign or stay in office. even on the board of supervisors we have two asian-american supervisors who disagree. supervisor chen was one of the first asking hsu to resign, but the other supervisor believes in hsu's apology and believes she should follow her commitment and
let voters decide in november. there are also community groups asking ann hsu to resign, but there is also backlash in the community, saying this issue should have more consultation with committee members. also for now, hsu's strongest supporter is the mayor who appointed her to the state. and also recall campaign activists, fellow activists on the recall campaign, they are still supporting her. karina: i was going to ask about mayor london breed, who appointed her to the school board. as of right now, it sounds like mayor breed is in support? han: yes. i antivert -- i interviewed her last week about this. she said the comments were hurtful and disappointing but she wanted to make this a teaching moment so communities can have better trust and understanding with each other.
i think she would still want her to stay in office. karina: i have to ask, a lot of groups are weighing in on whether she should or should not resign. we also heard from the naacp. can you talk about that? han: there are a lot -- there are a wide range of groups asking her to resign including the naacp, the teachers union. they issued a letter on urging ann hsu to resign. karina: it sounds like there is no plan to resign anytime soon. so what happens next? han: there will be more and more groups and more and more elected officials weighing in on the issue but if ann hsu chooses to stay in office, then she will still be on the san francisco school board.
and november will be election time where the voters will decide if you will get another four-year term because she was appointed by the mayor back in february when the three school board members were recalled. karina: it just feels like every other week or every month there is something new happening with the san francisco school board. can you talk about what this latest controversy says about the school board, and just what is the shape of it, what is going on right now? han: san francisco school board has been in a really chaotic situation for the past year because of the recall and the pandemic. a year ago, another school board member was in a similar situation. some of her old tweets were being considered racially insensitive, so that led to a political firestorm of elected officials and committee groups asking her to resign.
also the school reopening, the merit-based controversy and the renaming. all of this combined together making san francisco school board such a topic in national news even. ann hsu is just the latest episode in all this. karina: i know you will continue covering this and we will continue reading in the san francisco standard. thank you so much han li for joining us this afternoon. han: thank you for having me. karina: and you can check out more of the san francisco standards other original reporting on their website, sfstandard.com. and we will bring you more segments featuring the standard's city focused journalism. look for that twice a week right here on getting answers at 3:00. you are swimming at the beach, and you get attacked by a seal. it can happen. and we have video to prove it. what you should
karina: video captured the moment a california woman was attacked by a monk seal in hawaii. she was swimming in waikiki sunday when apparently she got a little too close. there were warning signs posted at the beach warning swimmers not to go near the nursing monk seals, and the woman ended up with several cuts. wow. just amazing watching that video. you have probably seen it all over social media. joining us live now is jeff boehm, veterinarian and works with the marine memo center to give us more perspective on this. thank you so much for being here. jeff: a pleasure. karina: first question, i feel like we have seen video after video just recently of similar incidents. how unusual is this? there was video out of san diego a few weeks ago seals chasing people on the beach. so, is this just the fact that
people are recording more and we are seeing it more, or is there more to this? jeff: i think people are recording these things more, but i think there is more to it. this incident in hawaii was really dramatic and it is getting a lot of coverage. a very unfortunate situation, but hopefully it is raising some awareness. the event in san diego, likewise, very dramatic. but it reminds people that we have this gorgeous coastline, we share it. we share it with wildlife. and when we move off of the sand into the water, we are entering their domain. and once you do that with appreciation for the wildlife, first and foremost, with respect. karina: right. we are on their territory. so, from what we have reported, it sounds like that woman in the video we saw, she was in the wrong place at the wrong time. is that right?
she happened to be there, the seal was not happy with her being there. i watched this multiple times. it doesn't seem like she is trying very hard to swim to shore. what is your take on this? jeff: right, and it is hard not having been there, but i would say wrong place, wrong time is a little bit giving a pass. there are signs up, there are individuals and organizations like our own that are on these beaches in hawaii along the coast here making clear with signage and with tape and other things the fact there is wildlife present. i think the onus is on auster respect that -- is on us to respect that, and take stock that we are entering a beautiful area with wildlife. wildlife that is hardwired to protect itself, certainly to protect its pup. karina: right. so it sounds like the seal was
protecting its pup. is that is what is happening recently? is this that time of the year? jeff: certainly it is that time of the year in some cases. the case you referenced down in san diego, that is just to have this urban wildlife interface. my gosh, can it be more dramatic than at that beach in san diego? here in the bay area, we too enjoy more and more wildlife in san francisco bay and along the ocean coasts. we are seeing porpoises back after decades of being absent. we have folks who swim at pride park and are sometimes entertained by, sometimes intimidated by the seals or sea lions they encounter. what we recommend his people really take stock in what they can do to respect that space. so stay back. if you are wondering if you are too close, you are to close. maybe keep a half football field
in mind. zoom in with your camera, get the photos you want, but respect the animals. this is really our responsibility, as i see it. karina: i have to ask, what if you are in that situation? you are that woman that we saw the video. i'll leave defend yourself -- how do you defend yourself? fight back? swim away as fast as you can? jeff: i have had the opportunity to speak to some of the swimmers at aquatic park, as some of my colleagues here have. my advice is straightforward. try to stay calm, back away from the animals, but get out of the water, swim in another area. keep a, "they were here first" kind of attitude. if you ever see an animal you think is not well, by all means give us a call. we are the world's largest marine animal hospital.
we are ready to come out and assess the animals and bring them into care if need be. you can contact us at -- karina: 15 seconds left. aside from sharks, any other animals we should be aware of when swimming in the ocean or the b jeff: bear in mind that they are in wildlife big and small, in any water that you are going to enter into. whether it is the presence we yourself or the trash you are leaving behind or the dog off a leash. seabirds, monk seals, california sea lions, sharks, they all deserve our respect. karina: thank you so much for your time. getting answers continues in a moment, but first, a reminder. you can get our live newscast with our abc
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