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tv   Democracy Now  LINKTV  July 29, 2020 8:00am-9:01am PDT

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[captioning made possible by democracy now!] ♪ amy:rom new york, this is democracy now! ofwilliam barr's view presidential power are so radically mistaken he is the wrong man at the wrong time to be attorney general of the united states. amy: attorney general william barr appeared before the house grilled on the deployment of tuesday, federal forces to confront black lives matter protesters, voting rights, and other issues.
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we'll air highlights and then speak to the reverend raphael warnock, who is running for senate in georgia. he is pastor at martin luther king's former church, ebenezer baptist in atlanta. he was with john lewis at his death and will presidede over hs funerall on thursday. has t to becomeme comfmfortable e -- hapappy, , to comfortable with black people dying. that is what we mean when we say black lives matter. plus, we will speak to civil rights legend bernard lafayette, a longtime friend of john lewis. the two helped start sncc, the student nonviolent coordinating committee, and organized the freedom rides. >> i became a freedom ride or because i was involved with the nashville movement in 1960. we wanted to continue the work we were doing. amy: all that and more, coming up. welcome e to demococracy now,
8:02 am, the quarantine report. i'm amy goodman. the united states recorded more than 1200 coronavirus deaths on tuesday, the highest one day toll since may, with one person dying of covid-19 every 70 -- 72 seconds. arkansas, california, florida, oregon, montana all reported one-day record death tolls as a new federal report warned 21 states meet the definition of a red zone where aggressive steps are needed to slow transmission of the disease. in texas, the state tally of coronavirus deaths jumped by 12% tuesday after officials closed a loophole on how they report covid-19 deaths. the data shows latinx texans are disproportionately more likely to die from the disease. for those who survive covid-19, there is increasing evidence of long-term organ damage. a new study published by the "journal of the american medical association" found, of
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middle-aged patients who 100 recovered from covid-19, 78 had structural damage to theirir hearts. as the u.s. death toll from rapidly approroaches 150 thouousand, president trurump declared t tuesday much of t the united states is covid free. speaking from the white house press room trump lamented polls , showing his approval rating is lagging far behind top infectious disease expert dr. anthony fauci. curious. a man works for us, with us. arefauci and dr. birx highly thought of, but nobody likes me. it can only be my personality. amy: president trump then walked out of his tuesday press briefing after a cnn reporter asked him about his re-tweeting of a video featuring stella immanuel well, an evangelical christian doctor who has urged people not to wear masks and embraced the drug hydroxychloroquine for covid-19 despite studies showing it
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offers no benefit and can cause deadly side effects. immanuel has previously suggested alien dna is used in pharmaceuticals and that gynecological problemsms are caused by sexual visitations by demons. meanwhile, twitterer temporarily son,nded president trump's donald trump, jr., tuesday after he shared a video of immanuel and other doctors making false claims about the coronavirus. twitter said the tweet violated its policy on spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to covid-19. on capitol hill the house , progogssive caucus is callinig on democrats to reject a senate republican coronavirus stimulus bill as a "policy of mass evictions, mass homelessness, mass poverty, and mass hunger." the republican bill would slash expanded unemployment benefits that provide an additional $600 a week to about 30 million unemployed workers. that expanded benefit expired last weekend. republicans s have proposesed replacing it with a much
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smaller, $200 a week benefit. meanwhile, the republican bill would add $8 billion to the pentagon budget. some o of it to pay for money trump p diverted from the pentan to pay for sections of the u.s.-mexico border wall. the american federation of teachers warned tuesday its 1.7 million members are prepared to strike in school districts that fail to o protect teachers, students, and school staffers from the coronavirus.. the a.f.t. says schools should only reopen in regions with coronavirus transmission rates below 1% and covid-19 positive test rates belelow 5%, a benchmk that few statetes have achieved. in geneva, switzerland, the world health organization waward tuesesday that summertime temperatures in the northern hemisphere are failing to slow the spread of coronavirus. w.h.o. spokesperson margaret harris warned against complacency, saying the pandemic is continunuing to worsen across much of the world. >> it is a problblem.
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it likikes jumping f from one pn to another when weome in closese contact. let's not give it that opportunity. aresecond wave idea -- we in the first wave. it is one bibig wave. amy: argentina reported a record 120 new covid-1919 deaths monda, bringing the country's death toll to over 3100. argentine authorities are warning of possible shortages of intensive care unit beds in hospitals in and around buenos aires. in guatemala, the government has begun reenening the e economy after months of strict coronanavirus restrictions despe a continuing surge in covid-19 cases. nearly 1800 deaths. guatemala's borders will remain closed, but many industries have resumed operations. public transportation will gradually start running, and shopping centers and restaurants were allowowed to reopen this week.
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attorney general william barr appeared before the house judiciary committee tuesday, where he was grilled over his defense of president trump's policies, including the toloyment of federal forces confront black lives matter protesters and a contentious exchange noted the discrepancy between barr's militarized response to black lives matter protesters and armed militia members who display white nationalist symbols at protests against public health measures. swastikasite men with storm a government building with guns, there is no need for the president to "activate" you because they are getting the president's personal agenda done. when black people and people of color protest police brutality, systemic racism, and the president's own lack of response to those critical issues, then you forcibly remove them with armed d federal officers, pepper bombs, because they are considered terrorists the president. amy: we will have more on this
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hearing with raphael warnock, running for senate in georgia. tuesday, and army national guard officer who issued a crackdown near the white house told a house committee he witnessed peaceful protesters being suddenly tear gas without warning, calling the deployment and excessive use of force. the crackdown came after attorney geneneral william barr appeared ahead of president trump's photo op. blacack lives matter protests continue acrososs the unitited states. in portland, oregon, protesters arrested by federal agents on even the most minor charges or ordered by federal judges to sign a pledge not to protest again as a condition of their release from jail. one attorney with the aclu called the orders hilariously unconstitutional. the white house official said the trumpet ministration -- trump administration is
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attempting to draw down troops in portland. federal agents have pulled out of seattle. in new york, plainclothes police officers snatched a protester from the street during a protest march and forced her into an unmarked minivan as uniformed officers pepper sprayed onlookers. the arrest drew comparison to tactics used in portland. 18-year-old nikki stone was released after being charged with five counts of damaging police cameras around city hall. in minneapolis, police have issued an arrest warrant for a suspect known as umbrella man, who was filmed smashing the windows of an auto parts dealership on may 27, two d days after the police kililling of geororge floyd. investigatorors say the man is a white supremacist who sought to provoke violence against protesters. a minneapolis arson investigator wrote this was the first fire that set off a string of fires and looting throughohout the precinct and the rest of the
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city. in richmond, virginia, members of george floyd's family gather at the site of the former monument to confederate leader jefferson davis, which was toppled by protesters in june. a 3d hologramof honoring george floyd. organizers plan to project floyd's image at five other stops along the route of a 1961 civil rights protetest known as the freedom rirides. we will speak with a freedom writer leader in the broadcast -- freedom ridider later in the broadcast, bernanard lafayette,a clclose friend of f john lewis. the e following headline e conts diststurbing video o of police violencece. cocoalition in dedetroit is callining for an independent investigatioion into the fatall policece shootining of an afrirican-americican manan named takiking littleton -- hahakim lilittleton. itit appears to showow littletos shshot repeaeatedly whilile facn on t the ground wiwith an offifn
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top of f him. onone offir r shot himim in thed at p point-blank rge video appepears to shohow littln had first fired at the officers but was soon tackled. the coalition for police transparency and accountability policeused detroit's chief of mischaracterizing the shooting but initiallyly only releasing footage that backed at the agency version of what happened. hastrump administration announced it will reject new applications for dhaka. -- daca. the administration said it would eliminate new work permits to one year instead of two. the e united nations is settingp temporary housing units for thousands of asylum-seekers stuck in mexico as they wait for asylum claims to be heard in the u.s. some housing units will be sent to border cities, where
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asylum-seekers were evacuated monday as the region was hit by hurricane hanna. at least five people are missing and feared dead after refugee camps flooded. in boston, a group of undocumented families held a protest tuesday outside the home of massachusetts house speaker after state lawmakers failed to include an amendment that would have granted undocumented people the right to get a driver's license. in southern california, police working for the union pacific railroad will no longer collaborate with immigrations custom enforcement in detaining people a and transferrining theo federal custody. in bolivia, protesters marched tuesday in el alto, demanding the right to elect a new president after the governmene's right-wing intnterim leader said it would postpone elections for the second time this year, citing the pandemic. ofups accused anez
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continuing a coup d'etat. >> we willll not allow this dede facto o government to embezzle bolivia. we determined we will carry on with the protests until the elections are ratified. e experienceded one of its deadliest and most represessive periods a and decas as the government carried out summary executions according to a new report by harvest international humans rights clinic. said theselaro abuses mirror the authoritarian behavior and dictatorships of the 1970's. this must stop. 212 land and environmental defenders were murdered last year, the highest number since the group global witness began gathering data eight years ago. around 40% of those killed were indigenous people. columbia was the deadliest
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country with 64 killeled. also higigh on the list, philippines, brazil, mexico, and guatemala. joe biden said tuesday he wilill nameme his vice presidential running mate next week. bideny, many speculated has chosen california senator kamala harris after biden was photographed holding notes featuring harris's name followed by five talking points, do not hold grudges, campaign with me and jill, and great respect for her. two transgender women were killed in the u.s. this week. in new york, a 32-year-old trans womaman was fatally stabbed in n apartment bubuilding over the weekend. some on social media have identified her as tiffany harris, but her name has not been confirmed. police are searching for a man captured on surveillance cameras in connection with her killing. a 24-year-old transgender woman identified as queasha d. hardy were shot to
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death monday. she was a hairstylist. her death -- their deaths are believed to be the 20th and 21st killings of transgender people inin the u.s. this year. a lawyer for wikileaks said monday the united states is preparing to bring more charges against julian assange, already faces up to 175 years in prison on espionage charging -- charges. lawyer, former spanish judge of a guard zone -- baltasar garzon. >> julian assange has been the susubject of pololitical persecn in which all the r rules of due prprocess have been brbroken. false evidence has beenn used. illegal evidence has been used. procedurure in thehe united stas has been c contaminated d as a result. amy: those arere some of the headadlines. now,s is democracy, the quarantine report. i am amymy goodman broadcasting from new york.
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all of ourme to listeners and viewers across the country and around the world. amy: attorney general william barr faced questionsns from the house judiciary committee five hour hearing chaired by jerry nadler. use ofiam barr's presidential power are so radically this taken that he is the wrong men at the wrong time to be attorney general of the united states. amy: the hearing was delayed by about an hour because the chair, jerry nadler, was in a car -- though ont injured. washington congress member noted theyapal discrepancy -- as they stormed state capitol buildings in protest of public health measures. >> on two separate occasions, after president trump tweeted
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liberate michigan to subvert stay-at-home orders to protect public health of people in michigan, protesters swarmed the ,ichigan capital carrying guns some with swastitikas, confedere flags, and one with a dark haired doll with a noose around its neck. are you aware these protesters call for the governor to be lynched, s shot, and beheaded? >> no. >> there is a real discrepancy and how you react as attorney general, top cop in this country, when white men with swastikas storm a government there is noith guns need f for the president to acactivate you because they are getting g the president'ss persl agenda done. when black people and people of color protest police, systemic ownsm, and the president's lack of response to those critical issues, then you forcibly remove them with armed fefederal officers, pepper bombs
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bebecause they are cononsidered terrorists by the prpresident. amy: that t is washihington congressman -- congress member pramila jayapal. the last day, the largest spike in deaths, 1200 since may. congress member at cedriric richmond of louisiana questions barr's opposition to voting by mail. >> african-americans, black people disproportionately died from covid-19, coronavirus. >> i think that is right. be thet that it would first time that african-americans have risked their lives to vote in this country to reserve democracy, but the suggestion is that them having the ability to vote by lead told somehow massive voter fraud. i will not stick to that. >> i did not say that.
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i state what i think is a reality. if you have wholesale mail in voting, it increases the risk of fraud. >> but it does not make it likely. amy: the attorney general has voted byby mail himself. as lawmakers a question -- questioned attorney general william barr, congressman louis lie in state on the capitol steps for a public viewing. ebenezer baptist church was the spiritual home of dr. martin luther king jr. first we discussed this hearing with dr. raphael warnock, who serves a as senior pastor at tht church, the ebenezer baptist church, and will officiate over lewis's funeral thursday. reverend warnock is running as a democrat for senate in georgia. reverend warnock, it is great to have you back with us.
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in a moment, we are going to talk to you about your dear friend, civil rights icon john lewis. we want to start on this highly contentious hearing yesterday. on the issue of voting rights and what the federal government of done in sending a surge agents to cities that have major black lives matter protests. your thoughts?s? >> g good mornining, amy. it is good to be here with you and juan again. we are witnessing what we have seen over the last three and a half years under this administration. hostilitykind of toward communitities of color tt is unabashed. we are at an inflection point in this country. in spite of the machinations of donald trurump and those who do his biddiding, inincluding thee atattorney general, the g good s
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is we are seeing a multiracial coalition of people pouring out into american streets, demonstrating nonviolently. the top cop inn, our country, to somehow suggest that vote by mail leads to fraud is wrong. it is part of what we have seen with republicans as we have dealt with this issue of voter suppression. they have used the language of voter fraud.d. everybody knows that voter fraud is almost nonexistent. it is really a way of trying to suppress the vote, but it will not work. we are pushing back here in georgia, and people are pushshig backck across the country. , duringverend warnock attorney general barr's
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testimony, you made remarks in terms of police abuse. blackid, the ththreat to lives posed byby crime on n the ststreet is massively greater tn any threat poposed by policice misconduduct. threat to black liveves posed by crime on the street is massively greater than any threat -- posed d by police misconduct. is we entrust the polili with statate power, and theyrere sworn to protectct and, instead of that, people find themselves on the receiving end of state sanctionened violence. brutalility to police is there i is crime in all communities. everybodody knows people typipiy commit crimes against those who are in the closest proximity to them.
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this is a typical red herring. it is a distraction. it will not stand. we continue to push back against police brutality. as we do, we are inspired by those who fought the good fight long before us. wewe are celebrating the life of john lewis tomorrow at our church. think of john lewis on the bridge in selma, withstood police brutality in order to win for us the right to vote. all thehe decades l later, evens we celebrate him, we are fighting against police brutality and trying to maintain and strengthenen our right to vote. we cannot turn back now. we have to be vigilant and focused and disciplined. it is more important now than it has been in a long time. we say it all the time, but elections have consequences.
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we are seeing under this administration that elections literally can be a matter of life and death. i'ms are standing up, and gratefeful to be part of the coalitition. juan: i wanted to ask you about anotheher aspectct of the heari. whwhen congress members questiod attorney general barr on his characterization of trump's handling o of the coronavirus , especiallys superb the new york congress member akeem jeffriess writing down series o of trump missteps. the president t famously said tt the number of coronavirus cases would go from 15 to zero. superb? tetell that to the e families of nearly 150,000 americans who are dead. superb? we have more than our share of thisavirus caseses and
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crisis is being handled in our country as if we were a c county with no resources at all. amy: reverend warnock, we want to go to thahat clip of hakeem jeffries questioning attorney general william barr. >> febebruary, presidedent trump falsely claimed that the number of coronavirus cases we go from 15 to zero in a few days. was ththat supererb? >> i would have to see the context. >> here's the context. the number of cases did not go down to zero. tois over 4 million let's go march. presidident trump said, i take o responsibility at all for the failure in testing. was that superb? yes or no? >> it was accurate. the problem of the testing system was a function of president obama's mishandling of the cdc and his efforts too centralize everything in the cdc. >> thank you, mr. barr.
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that is inaccurate. that is a lie. in april, president t trump irresponsibly suggested that the american people injectct themselves with bleach. was that superb? >> that t is not what i heard. >> thatt is is ackley what he said. that is what thehe american peoe -- exactly what he said. that is with the american people heard. amy: that is new york congress member hakeem jeffries questioning attorney general william barr. i wanted to add to one question. juan's question. you have this confrontation between the mayor of atlanta versus the governor, who refuses to impose a mask mandates, though she did in atlanta. he has sued her personally,
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saying she should not be able to speak to the press. this african-a-american woman mayor should not b be allowewedo speak k out. par for the course with this administration. challenge does not know political partities. they a are playing politics with lives.s we have nearly 150,000 americans dead, 4 million cases. is not doing well. we are seeing, in the case of governor kemp, as we s see with william barr, folks doing the biddining of this president. electedneed is leaders to serve the people rather than their own interests. literally robbing an african
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american mayor of the right to speak on behalf of her own constituency. it is anantidemocratic and beyod the pale. amamy: we are going to break and come back to our discussion with you. we want to talk to y you specifically about john lewis. you will bee o officiatiting ovi funeral tomorrow in atlanta. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
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amy: wintley phipps performing amazing grace monday in the lewisl rotundada as jojohn lay in state, the first african-american lawmaker to lay in state in the capitol rotunda. when president trump was asked if you would be joining some any others in paying respects to congressman lewis, he said, no, i am not goingng. this is the micro sesee now, , e quarantine report. now!, t the quarantine report. we look at john lewis, being
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mourned by the nation and his alabamaes its way frorom to washington, d.c. to georgia with tributes along the way to the man known as the conscience of congress. wednesday, lewis will lie in state at the georgia capital. the firsthe became black politician to lie in state at the u.s. capitol rotunda, where he was honored by former colleagues, including house speaker nancy pelosi and democratic presidential candidate biden. president trump said he would not be attending. john lewis's journey home to georgia has highlighted many hallmarks of his remararkable life, starting in troy, alabama before moving to the edmund pettus bridge sunday, where red the spote strewn on where louis was almost beaten to lewis wasolice -- almost beaten to death by police.
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this journey ending thursday at theprivate funeral ebenezer baptitist church in atlanta, the spiritual home of dr. martin luther king jr.. still with us, reverend dr. raphael warnock, who is the senior pastor at the ebenezer baptist church, presiding over thursday's service. you were with john lewis in his final days, befefore he died of papancreatic cancecer after his family hold you to his bedside. talk about your experiences with andnd his significance,e, what he has taught you. several days before john lewis passed, i received a phone call. it was evident to the folks around him that he was entererig the last part of h his journey. he was again beginning to cross a bridge.
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i made my way to his bedside. scripture, expressed to him my love for him and how much i appreciate and respect what he did for all of us. even in his weakness,s, he musterered the strength to say,i love you. moving to beeeply with him and with his family inn those momoments. warnock, thed cause for which john lewis fought for for all his life, nowcially vototing rights, is -- georgia h has become a grgrod zezero for the repression of voti rights. then you talk s somewhatbout lines,, problemems off long faulty voting machinenes, and
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poorly trained staff o of the recent primaries? your church is in n a lawsuit around voter suppression in georgia. could you talk about that as well? >> all o of that is cocorrect. the irony of this moment is that, even as we celebratete and hononor john lewis, the patron saint of voting rights, he hailed from the state whihich, n many instances, is ground zero for voter suppression. we are stillll fighting voter suppression in georgia, but not only in georgia. all across this country. in 2013, the supreme court gutted the voting rights act, dipped in the blood of john lewis and hosea whoiams and so many others fought the good fight. him, it haselebrate not been reauthorized. the last time this bill was
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reauthorized, george w. bush was president. it passed the united states but, in recent years, voting has become a partisan issue. those are the -- there are those who are not embarrassed by making it difficult for people to vote. fought to the very last of his strength. the reauthorization of the voting's right -- voting rights act passeded the u.s. congress. i am running against someone now in the u.s. senate who voted against it, congressman doug collins here and it passed the house cannot meet it to mitch mcconnell's desk, and that is where it is's sitting, on mitch mcconnell's -- is sitting, on mitch mcconnell's desk. the billll that t carries john lewis's blood is sitting on his desk. if he really wants to honor john lewis, he ought to pass the
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bill. he ought to put it up for a vote. that is how you honor john lewis. there is conversation about changing t the name of the brid, and we ought to do that, but if we change the name of the bridge but people are still struggling their american franchise, we are still in trouble. houris moment, in this when we celebrate this great patriot who helped america t to live to the fullness of his democracy, let's reauthorize the bill. ask you,nted to reverend warnock, about comments of another senator, republican senator tom cotton of arkansas, who has proposed a bill that would cut federal funding to any theic school that includes "new york times" pulitzer prize winning 1619 project as part of its curriculum.
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the initiative named after the year enslaved africans were first route to north america. in an interview with the arkansas democrat gazette, senator cotten refers to slavery as "a necessary people -- evil upon which the union was built." ifole hannah-jones tweeted, race-based slavery, where it was legal to rape, torture, and sell human beings for profit, were a necessary evil, it is hard to imagine what cannot be justified if it is a means to an end. your comments on senator cotten? were to win, he would be your calling in the senate. >> he is a throwback. the very thining we
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are pushing against. there will alwlways be voices le tom cotton. what is important for us to do in this moment is not to censor what he is saying. on how wefocus strengthen our democracy -- but to focus on how wee strengthen our demomocracy, amplify the covenant we have with one another. one of the things that inspires me about john lewis is he never given to bigotry. he confronted it, but he also nenever gave in. he walked across that bridge peril by t that he was in standing up p for democracy. he believed in american sheheriff jim than clark, so he confronted him. in this moment, those of us who believe in what america is at
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its highest, who believe in the american ideal of freedom, of one person, one vote, those of us who b believe the dignity of humanity and that that ought to be reflected in our public policy, which means people ought to have access to health care, that children regardless of zip code ought to have access to a quality education, and that everybody ought to be able to vote, it is up to us to stand in this moment. cottons of the world will be handled. we are celebrating john lewis. he confronted bigots. most of them nobody remembers their names. nobody remembers even the names , the moderate clergy persons who wrote to martin luther king jr. in 1963 and said his actions in untimely andre unwise. i guess they thought segegregatn was a necessary people.
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everybody talks about the letter from birmingham jail. nobody remembers who that letter was written to. you have to research their names. i think history redeems the conscience of people like john lewis, who stand up and represent love and light and liberation. because of his deedsds, he wille remembered by history andnd his sacrifice is etched in amy: amy: eternity. can you u give us a's -- is etcd in eternity. amy: can you give us a schedule of today and tomorrow? >> the service begins tomorrow at ebenezer baptist church at 11:00 a.m. it is a private service in terms of attendance. our sanctuary h holds about 2000 peoplele.
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because of social distancing, we will have about a 10th of the capacity of ththe church. matter, we have to preserve lives at all costs. john lewis would want us to do the sasame. the service will be covered live by the media and live-streamed on the ebenezer website. we will not all be in the same room, but we will all be together in spirit as we , as wete this great man ands past this moment reconsider the work to which he dedicad d his life. tomorrow, we weep, as we should end the day after tomorrow, we stand up and we work for voting rights, for huhuman dignity, for health care, for education for all of our children. that is the work to which john lewis dedicated his whole life, and we owe him a debt of service and gratitude. foro that by standing up
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the best of us, the best in the human spirit, the best in the american spirit in a moment like this. amy: thank you so much for being with us, reverend dr. raphael warnock. ebenezer baptist church in atlanta was the spiritual home of dr. martin luther king jr.. he w will preside overer thurs's funeral for congress member john lewis. when we come back, civivil righs legend bernard lafayetette, longtime friend of john lewis. the two helpeded start sncc. ♪ [music break]
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from a shall overcome collection of f songs of freedom riders and sit ins. --s is democracy now democracy now!, the quarantine
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reportrt. we turn to look at john lewis's early year of that early years of activism. john lewis had been heavily involved in lunch counter sit ins when he was chosen to be among the 13 original freedom rodes who rod3 bus -- buses across the south end this a aoss the sosouth. t this clip, john lewis s ads from his apppplication. >> i wish to apply for acceptance as a partrticipant in freedom ride. at americanior baptist theological seminary and hope t to graduate i in june. i know an education is importt,t, and iope toto getet one, but at this time humuman dignity is mosttmportant i in my life. that justice and freedom might come to the deep south.
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amy: john lewis was on the first freedom ride when it departed washington, d.c. with seven black and six white passengers. lewis was also among the first of the activists to face physical violence when he and two other freedom riders were severely beaten by whites a permit assists in rock hill, south carolina -- white hill, south in rock carolina. for more, we go to tuskegee, alabama, where we are joined by his s lifelong friend,, co-conspirator, former roommate bebernardd lafayetette, a civil rirights leaeader and s scholaro participatated in n the nationaw aleanans freeeedom ride in 196, leader in the student nonviolent coordinating committee, which john lewis had it. bernard lafayette, now a professor at auburn university, welcome to democracy now! we last spoke to you when freedom riders the documentary by stanley nelson came out at
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the sundance film festival. to how you first met jojohn lewis andnd to the st ins and freedom m rides. >> thank you. i want to say that i a appreciae whatat you are doing in terms of documenting history. our young people can take thevantage e of understanding particulars and how things change so they can maintaiain those changes and make even more. what youou are doioing is exexty important, and i'm happy to join you. when i was a studentnt at amerin babaptist collegege, john lewisd i were roommatates. we decided we were going to participate in the wororkshops that jim lawson was conducting in nashvhville focused on the et
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ins. it w was j john who persuadededo go to o the workshohops. i had so many jobsbs on campus,i did not have time. as john has s always been,n, hes very persuasive and persistent. j just tothe wororkshops stop hearing john talk.k. byo and behold, i w was consumd the information andnd the straty and that sort of thing.. john realllly recruited me into it. one thing i want to say is that, 1960 -- weit ins in desegregated thehe lunch countes in nashville in about threee months. we were one of the first student groups in our community that did that. one of the things that did tt was ththe fact t that we had
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strategy. we had our spokesperson. she had to deal with the media and be able to put it in such a way that it was appealing. we had to try to win as many people over as possible to make changes. you cacannot do it without winng the sympathy, if not the actctie susupport, of the majority. ingot a majority of people nashville to really support what we were doing. the economic boycycott was effective. that was one of the ings that showed us we h had support from many different people.e. lafayetette, for r the younger people o are watctching or lisistening to thisis show, n you talk about whatat exactly wr the frdodom riders?s? what did you do on a a day-to-dy babasis?
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talk about the work you and john lewis did d to desegregate greyhound buses. after the sit i ins took place and we were able to desegregate the luncnch counters, one of f e integration was the e bus station itself. we had lunchch counters athehe s station, so therefore we also counterst those lunch -- sat in at those lunch counteters. the greyhound bubus station w ws desegrgregated befefore the frem rides starteted. at c christmasas of 1960, jojohs anand i decided we were going to take the greyhound bus but sit in the front seat. the greyhound bus was still segregated even though t the station was integrarated in nashville. i sat behind the driver and john sat behind the next seat in the
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front. we rode all the way from , , john didid, and i continueued. we desegregated ththat bus. when the f freedom rides weree announced b by the congress f fr racial equality,y, there wasas o questition we re going to o go n the freedodom r rides. john was 2 21 in february that , 1960. i was not going to be 21 until the -- july. we applied. john lewis got accepepd but i i did not becausee i need a parental permission and my parents would not give permissionon. notather would say, i'm going to sign n your death warrant. aboutwas some question whwhether we would survive. john went on the original ride.
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in the first up leg, first part of the freedom ride. we decided we were going to continue. the reason why the freedom rides continued is because john lewis came back to nashville and saia, let's go. we got permissioion to take over the frfreedom rides. together and he took the first group. i hahad the backup group. you hahave to have a backup grop in case the first group got arrested. the only way you can continue is to have more people ready to go. we had strategy, and we had experience. , andd leadership ability we continued that freedom ride from birmingham into montgomery. in montgomery, we were met with violence. this was after we had traveled from birmingham to montgomery.
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the federal national guardsmen, all those people were surrounding us. once we got to the bus s statio, disappeared,tection and we were on the platform. work -- jim zwerg was beateten up. i i got kicked i in the c chestd had three broken riri. ere was nothing you could do , so i went ribs through the entire freedom rides with three broken ribs. i did not tell my fellow freedom riders because they might have insisted i not go. i just kept quiet. i quietly suffered the entire trip. amy: can you describe what rock hill, south carolina?
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congressman clyburn talks now about regretting that he did not meet the freedom ride bus when it came in, but his wife was pregnant and she wanted him with her. violenceeicance and that y you were met with. >> he was s beaten up. first is one of the wholiations off the people were againinst the freedom r ri. a and went on.hat the bus got burneded in alababaa and othehers went to birmingngh. they were beatenn o on the buse.
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the e violence manifesested its. juan: i am wondndering if you could talk also abouout thehe -- john lewis's leadership role. he became chairman of sncc and was later susucceeded in 1966. in s snccs a mamajor shift at the time with c carmichchael bebecoming more e frustred a and disillusioned withth the white liberal establishmhment of the democrcratic party after t the 4 convenention goes in the directn of black powerer movement andnd eventually into the blblack panthers. the impoportancece of john lew's mainintaining g his views on nonvioiolence and d why thisis s such aorore ofouour acvismsm. how did lewis deal with the changing debates at ththat time
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over nonviviolence and lack powr -- black power? first, itit is important it was ththe student nonviolent coordinating committee. it was made of stutudent leaders from v various collegeges and universisities, and they werere ,ulled together by alan baker who worked with martin luther king with the southern christian leadership conference. b becausets were there alan baker was a graduate of shaw univeversity. that was veryool receptptive to t this natition conference.
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of the students from nashville was the first chairman of sncncc. hehe was a graduee student working on his masters program. he showed leadership in nashville as well. john lewis showed leadership because he was president of his class and d president ofof the student body at americican baptt theological seminary. he had that leadership ability all the time. he did not promote himself. others promomoted him. it was a student organization, so john was no longer a student. car r mild coal -- carmichael wanted to be the chairman because he wanted to take sncc wasp of sncc, but supposedly for stutudents.
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a dififferent i into didirection. it no longerer was students. -- students in those leadership positions. the idea of black power -- we do not haveve time to do thisis, bt let me give you a hint of what was happening. stokely and i were cellmates of the freedom rides in jackson, mississippi. we stayed up all night arguing with eacach other abouout nonviolence. stokely also felt that black people should continue toto take leadership o of the voter registration movement and ththat kind of thing. unfortunately,y, blacks who had been sububjugated to segregation anoppressionon for so many years had carveded out of themselves d
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their expererience to be .ubmissisive to white folk i am breaking itit down for you now. s students who were part ofs -- who were p part of sncc went to mississippi andnd tried to recruruit black peopleo register, they said, g get out f here witith that mess. whwhen white students went and told them they were going g to come picick them up and take thm to register to vote, they said, what time shouldld i be ready? amy: we just have a minute, and i wanted to come back today. appearance, john lewis, was at black lives matter plaza, with the big words black lives matter outside the white hhouse, outside lafayette park. you were youth leaders, active in selma with john lewis.
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what message do you feel john lewis had, especially for young peop o organining today? >> that was s one of the geniusf john lewis. hehe knew how to relate to peope ,ho werere different from him different orientations, different vavalues, different phphilosophies. that is why he was such a greaet leader. he did not put people downwn or ignore them or say a a lot of negative things s about themm simply because they did not agree with him. he found a way to make a way. he was always loining at ratherizing our approach than dividing. amy: we are going to have to leave it there. before we go, i want to wish you a happy 80th birthday. >> thank you. amy: bernard lafayette, civil
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rights leader, scholar, a longtime friend of late congress member john lewis, his former roommate. we wish you a very happy birthday. that does it for our broadcast. i am amy
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