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tv   Democracy Now  LINKTV  May 20, 2022 8:00am-9:01am PDT

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05/20/22 05/20/22 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from new york, this is democracy now! code sing the mass shootings in trust i, south carolina, el paso, texas, and pittsburgh, last year in atlanta, this week in dallas, texas, now in buffalo , buffalo, new york, whe supremacy is a pson. it is a poison -- it really is.
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amy: as funerals begin in buffalo for the 10 black residents killed by a white supremacist, we speak to amy spitalnick, who successfully sued white supremacist organizers of the deadly 2017 unite the right rally in charlottesville. plus, we speak to former buffalo mayoral candidate india walton. >> if we are going to begin to heal as a country and really beat back what is systemic racism that caes these extremist ideas and homegrown terrorists, our people have been terrorized for generations under this country, our existence in this country comes from a place of tear. amy: and we look at the fight for reproductive rights as oklahoma lawmakers approved the most sweeping abortion ban in
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the country. we will speak to the nation magazine a portion abortion -- access correspondent amy littlefield. >> with this total abortion ban, i thin oklahoma is really beming harbinger of what we're going to see across huge regions of this country and coming weeks andonths when entire regions go dark in terms of abortion access. amy: all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. the united states senate has approved a $40 billion aid package for ukraine, promising heavy weapons for its military and humanitarian aid for millions of people displaced by russia's invasion. democrats were unanimous in their support for the measure. just 11 republicans voted against it.
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it is by far the largest u.s. foreign aid package in decades and brings total u.s. assistance to ukraine to $54 billion in less than three months. the aid bill's speedy passage through congress came as republican senators continue to block passage of $10 billion in additional covid funding and as much of president biden's legislative agenda remains stalled on capitol hill, including bills on voting rights and the climate crisis. in ukraine, president volodymyr zelenskyy thanked the u.s. for its support thursday, saying russia's assault has completely destroyed the eastern donbas region. meanwhile, "the new rk times" has published witness testimony and videos showing how russian paratroopers executed at least eight ukraian men in a kyiv suburb on march 4 in a potential war crime. russia has rejected a call by the united nations to end its black sea neville blockade which has prevented ukraine from exporting grain to world markets. on thursday, u.n. secretary told
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the security council russia's invasion threatens to trigger years of mass hunger and famine, compounding food shortages caused by climate change, covid, and inequality. >> the war in ukraine is adding to the dimension of global hunger. russia's invasion of its neighbor has effectively ended its food exports. price increases of up to 30% across africa and the middle east. amy: a new report by the norwegian refugee council finds an unprecedented over 60 million people worldwide were displaced last year, largely due to war and violence. meanwhile, cyclones, floods, and other displacements. the latest global report on internal displacement doesn't include the nearly 8 million people that have fled ukraine since the russian invasion began in february. president biden has arrived in south korea, kicking off a
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six-day visit to asia that will also take him to japan next week. biden's first stop today was a tour of a samsung electronics plant alongside newly inaugurated south korean president. their meeting came after the white house said it expects north korea to carry out a long-range missile test, or a nuclear test, during biden's trip. meanwhile, a top chinese diplomat told biden's national security adviser jake sullivan in a phone call wednesday -- "if the u.s. continues to play the taiwan card and head further on the wrong path, this will certainly lead to dangerous situations. china will be steadfast to take actions that defend its sovereignty and security interest," he said. oklahoma lawmakers have passed a bill that bans nearly all abortions starting at fertilization. the measure now heads to republican governor kevin stitt, who's promised to sign what will become the nation's strictest anti-abortion law.
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the legislation allows in oklahoma -- any oklahoma resident to sue doctors who perform abortions or anyone who aids or abets an abortion, modeled on texas' anti-abortion law that took effect in september. the oklahoma legislature also approved a bill thursday banning transgender people from using the bathroom that matches their gender identity. democratic oklahoma state representative mauree turner spoke out against both measures during floor debate thursday. >> i hope that folks truly understand the offer of this bill has not run any legislation that is actually going to protect life in oklahoma. there facing a time when folks are having to ration the formula they are giving their babies, where we are suffering from doctors,awyers, educators leaving the state because we are not creating a safe space where big brother is always watching you. this is not how we create community or save it. please vote no. amy: we will have more on the fight for abortion rights later in the broadcast. in buffalo, the first funeral will be held today for the victims of saturday's massacre
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when an 18-year-old self-described white supremacist opened fire on a grocery store in the heart of buffalo's black community. the gunman shot dead 10 people, all of them african-american. today's funeral is for 68-year-old heyward patterson who was a deacon at the tabernacle church of god. he was known for giving rides to people who needed to shop at tops where saturday's attack took place. the suspect briefly appeared in court thursday after a grand jury indicted him on first-degree murder, to which he pleaded not guilty. families of the victims were inside the courtroom where they faced the suspect for the first time since the weekend's mass shooting. the fbi is also weighing federal hate crime and terrorism charges. we will have more on this story after headlines. the house of representatives has narrowly approved a bill to crack down on price gouging on gasoline. its passage came as gas prices reached new highs this week, rising about four dollars a gallon in every state. no republicans voted in favor of
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the bill. they were joined by four house democrats. climate action groups applauded the move and called on congress to also pass a windfall tax on fossil fuel companies that have made record profits during the pandemic. the price gouging legislation is unlikely to clear the senate, where it would need the support of 10 republicans to break a republican filibuster. chicago's top police official had few answers thursday about how an unarmed 13-year-old boy was shot and seriously injured a day earlier after he allegedly ran from a stolen car. police superintendent david brown said an officer shot the boy after a chase, but he wouldn't name the officer and didn't say how many bullets police fired or whether the boy had his hands in the air. >> several officers pursued the individual on foot. the subject flees to a gas station parking lot at the 800 block of north cicero and turns toward the officer.
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the officer discharges his weapon, striking the individual once. amy: superintendent brown did confirm there was no gunfire directed at officers. chicago's police department says it has no plans to release any of the video to the public. last year, the department similarly resisted release of video showing an officer killing 13-year-old adam toledo. and it infamously fought the release of the video showing the police order of laquan mcdonald in 2014. in hungary, prime minister viktor orbán delivered the keynote address today as the american conservative political action conference, or cpac, gets -- open its annual conference. the group chose budapest, hungary, for this year's gathering in order to pay homage to orbán, far right authoritarian who recently won a fourth term in office. he frequently references the same great replacement ideology
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cited by the white supremacist shooter who killed 10 people at a supermarket in buffalo last weekend. orbán railed against lgbtq+ movement and said u.s. conservatives should be prepared to fight over the next presidential election. >> progressive liberals, no marxists, people financed by george soros and promoters of open societies, they want to annihilate the western way of life that you and we love so much. we have to take back the stitutions in washington and brussels. we must find allies and e another and coordinate the movement of our troops as we face the big test. 2024 wilbe aecisive year. america also appearing thursday was fox news personality tucker carlsen, who praised orbán an a prerecorded mood io -- video.
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former white house chief of staff mark meadows will address the conference today. and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we begin today's show looking at the crisis of white supremacist violence in the united states and the response to saturday's racist mass shooting in buffalo, new york, where an 18-year-old white gunman killed 10 people, all african-american, at a supermarket in the heart of the black community in buffalo, new york. on wednesday, the house passed legislation to bolster federal resources to prevent domestic terrorism. this comes after president biden visited buffalo tuesday. pres. biden: look, we've seen the mass shootings in charleston, south carolina, el paso, texas, pittsburgh, last year in atlanta, this week in dallas, texas, and now in buffalo. buffalo, new york. white supremacy is a poison. it is a poison.
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it really is. amy: investigators say the gunman spent months plotting to carry out the mass shooting and used the online platform discord to share details about his plot 30 minutes before the massacre. he alsoosted 180-page document citing the racist so-called "replacement theory." the gunman accused african-amerans of seeking to "ethnically replace my own peop." similar ventral -- vitriol has been referenced in other racist attacks, including the violent 2017 unite the right rally in charlottesville, virginia, where organizers chillingly chanted, "jews will not replace us." for more, we are joined by amy spitalnick, executive director of integrity first for america. she successfully sued white supremacist organizers of the violent 2017 unite the right rally in an effort to bankrupt them and shut them down. she is a granddaughter of holocaust survivors.
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amy, welcome to democracy now! can you respond to what happened in buffalo and the way the buffalo shooter is often described as a kind of lone wolf, troubled kid and how you dealt with that in virginia and what you think could be a way to begin to cope with the horror? >> thank you for having me. look, what happened and buffalo not an isolated incident. the shooter is not "lone wolf." this is precisely part of a cycle of supremacist violence in which each attack is made all the more dangerous by the increasingly normalized replacement theory ideology that is permeating through the republican party right now. and so it is impossible to separate this attack from this cycle of attacks we have seen in recent years -- charleston, charlottesville, pittsburgh, el
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paso, january 6 two extent fits intohe pattern. and of course, now buffalo. in addition to the black community come asian community, and many others. it is important to understand within the cycle how we break that cycle requires quite a bit, accountability we saw in charlottesville for those responsible for that violence. but you can't simply sue or prosecute your way out of this problem. it requires building into our society systemic measures to actually get to the root of what is causing this post prevention. dealing with social media companies. they require so much more that we as a society have failed to address despite the warning signs that have come again and again. of course, these horrific stickers that stay in the headlines for a few days and then we move on. it is important we not move on
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this time. amy: if you can talk about the fact the suspect actually shared plans for the plight 30 minutes before, talk about the social media platform discord and the parallels you see in other cases. >> discord five years ago is where the charlottesville neo-nazis plan their violent enmity list detail. they created all of these channels in which they discuss everything from what to wear to what to bring for lunch to whether they could hit protesters with cars and then claim self-defense, which is prisely whappene thevidencen our cas which d to the verdict against the organizers of the unite the right this past fall illustrates just how meticulous this planning was now central discord was. despite the fact we are nearly five years after unite the right, we are now learning the buffalo shooter used discord not just ended the 30 minutes leading up to the attack, but in advance to log is planning in
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private chat and then opened it up to a more public audience just beforehand. what this tells us, despite claims from discord they care about addressing extremism, five years after unite the right, five years after the platform first exploited the plan of white supremacist violence come the same thing as happened again. it is not just discord. amy: who are they owned by? >> i believe they are aelf suffient orgization. i could wrong. buthey areart of broader communitthat hasashed it handof its responsility to deal with white supremacist olence a other eremism that isunni rampant on this platform. just this morning, nbcews repoed the shooterearned h to outfit his gun on youtube and some of those videos are still
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up there. this is a problem that we know is systemic among social media coanies, tt after aacks afteattas, nothing h been done to sufficiently deal with is. amy: the significance of him life streaming and where he did that? >> livestream is a common tactic by white supremacist extremists. we have seen this including in the christchurch massacre inew zealand. it is important to understand this is a deliberate tool by white supremacists not just to achieve the sort of glory many of them want the fight for their people, but also to perpetuate the cycle of violence in which each attack inspires the next one. we know the pittsburgh shooter a number of years ago top to some of the charlottesville leaders before his attack. this christchurch shooter donated to some of the charlottesville leaders and painted onto his gun a white
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power civil that was fst popularized by another defendant. christchurch was livestreamed and inspired el paso and buffalo. you see how the cycle continues in which the supposed lone wolf are taking delivered steps not just to undertake the massacre with salt and buffalo last weekend but make sure someone looking on can be inspired to do the same thing. amy: and the role of facebook? >> the role of facebook is incredibly important to understand because that is, frankly, one of the sites many average americans are on. there was a piece of evidence and our cash and a email sent from facebook to the neo-nazi organizers of unite the right the evening of the torch march, encouring themo boost their posts which promoted the march and a great replacement theory. the algorithm is encouraging promotion of this white
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supremacist extremism is a perfect example of how broken the system is. no matter what facebook tells you that they're are trying to do to address this or years after the fact, little change. amy: amy spitalnick, if you could explain what it is you did exactly, this lawsuit, youwon $25 million. what was the strategy that was used and what do you think the effect has been? >> on behalf of nine charts for community members who were injured in the violence five years ago, our organization integrity first for america supported em in partnership with an incredible legal team in bringing civil lawsuit against the two dozen organizers at that violence, names i'm sure many of your viewers know. richard spencer, certain klan groups come that specifically
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organized, promoted, planned, and then celebrated the violence five years ago, down to discussions of whether they would hit protesters with cars. the evidence, which is now in our website, is stunning in terms of how well-planned it was and how rooted in the same replacement theory and anti-semitic racist and xenophobic white supremacist ideology it all was. taking them to court for this violent conspiracy under a number of federal and state laws , the trial began in october and i believe you all were covering it, and just before think -- thanksgiving, we want a verdict upwards of $26 million in putative and compensatory damages against every single defendant, finding them level for this violent conspiracy. civil litigation is so important for number of reasons. including the financial and operational consequences you alluded to earlier, taking on their finances, taking on their
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ability to operate to make a huge difference in this movement's ability to perpetuate the cycle of violence. we are now seeing our case serve as a model for lawsuits going after those responsible for january 6, lawsuits brought by members of congress, the capitol police against the proud boys, oath keepers, donald trump, rudy giuliani, and others. again, accountability crucial, but you cannot simply sue or prosecute your way out and that needs to go hand-in-hand with preventative measures many are now talking about for the first time. amy: you are the granddaughter of holocaust survivors. how does that inform what you do and connect you to what took place in buffalo this past weekend? >> for much of my life, my grandparents story was a far off story. it is now in the last five to 10 years become a cautionary tale of what happens when violent white supremacy and hate go
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unchecked. i think it makes it all the more important to understand how everything happening and this countrright now is part of the broader far right antidemocratic movement. you cannot separate the normalization of white supremacy on the right, these horrific attacks, from the broader anti-democratic movement we are seeing come the antiabortion action, the anti-lgbtq+ action, the voter suppression measures all bound up in this white supremacy and anti-semitism misogyny, homophobia, and so much more that puts every single one of our communities at risk if we don't fit into this narrow vision for what these white supremacists believe this country should be. it is so important our leadership and that all of us understand how interconnected all of these actions are and that what we are witnessing now is a far right assault not just on our communities as we saw in
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buffalo, but on the very tenets of our democracy that puts so much at risk d makes it all the more important come again, not just to hold those responsible accountable to prevent these measures, but to truly make sure we're dealing with t underlying structural problems that have gotten us to this horrific moment. amy: amy spitalnick, executive director of integrity first for america. successfully sued white superb sister organizers of the 2017 unite the right rally, winng more than $26 million. granddaughter of holocaust survivors. coming up, we go to buffalo to speak with a longtime community organizer india walton. stay with us. ♪♪ [music break]
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amy: "is it because i'm black" by the late buffalo blues musician lucky peterson. this is democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we turn now to buffalo where the
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first funeral is being held today for the victims of saturday's massacre when an 18-year-old white supremacist opened fire on a grocery store in the heart of buffalo's black community. the gunman shot dead 10 people. there all african-american. today's funeral is for 68-year-old heyward patterson, who was a deacon at the tabernacle church of god. he was known giving rides to people who needed to shop at tops where saturday's attack took place. we going back now to india walton. longtime buffalo community activist, ran for mayor of buffalo last year. we spoke to you on monday right after the massacre. at the end of this week, we wanted to go back to you. it was horrifying as i laid out the names of the victims as we knew that at that point on monday. i know that list was kat massey. you are hearing that for the first time at that moment. again, our condolences.
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can you talk about at this point, a week later, six days later, how the community is dealing and who the people are who have died and what you think needs to be done? >> thanks, amy. the commuty has come together. buffalo really is a place of resience, of deep community, of mutual aid. we have seen time and time ain when tragedies happen -- even on a day-to-day week, we take care of each other. the outpouring of support from agencies and individuals from all over municipalities, localities, over the country and the world, has really been overwhelming. my question is, what happens when the cameras leave? how do we continue to support people who have been negatively impacted? i walked around the neighborhood yesterday and talked to folks who are out sitting on their porches and walking through the streets were saying, you know,
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they did not want to go back into that store. ialked to young men whose mother shops in that tops who has not left the house since the incident happened. we really have to make sure the support is long-lasting and that we have our eyes f systemic change that has to occur in east buffalo and for black people in the community. amy: so the suspect appeared in court yesterday. some of those who lost loved ones in the courtroom. can you talk about that ene? >> d not go. i have been making myself scarce from a lot of situations because i have a difficult time dealing with this emotionally. i'm still very, very angry. i know the families are feeling a lot of anger, but to no he is being brought to court with a
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bullet-proof vest on, itust -- i am curious as to who was being most protected in this situation , you know, why it seems like the accused is being protected more than these families. amy: i wanted to go to president biden who visited your city of buffalo on tuesday. three days after the massacre. this is what biden said. he denounced the attack as an act of domestic terrorism and described white supremacy as a poison. pres. biden: look, we have seen the mass shootings and ash charleston, south carolina, el paso, texas, pittsburgh, last year in atlanta, this week in dallas, texas, now in buffalo. buffalo, new york. white supremacy is a poison.
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it is a ison. it really is. amy: your response? what you heard, what you want to hear, and also the response to the house of representatives approving a bill aimed at combating domestic terrorism passed by vote of 222-203, only one republican congressmember supported the bill, joining the democrats. >> our republican congress member did not, by the way, and white supremacy is a poison. it is also in the foundation and dna of this country, you know, the loan will narrative -- loan will narrative is untrue. this type of behavior is being bred, is being encouraged, and the stories of the people who are most impacted are being overshadowed by people who are
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using this as a moment of political -- for political gain for themselves. it is disheartening. i'm trying to be very careful with the words i use this morning. i don't want to hear anything. i want to see action. i want to see legislation. i want to see investments made in communities so that every person is allowed to be self-determined. i want to see employers like tops pay their employees a living wage so people are not in desperate poverty. i want to see black entities actually protected and valued. i what to see banks lend mortgages to families of color and give business financing so we don't have to depend on a single corporation for all of our needs in our community. i what to he solutions. i want to see something change,
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right? at the press conference yesterday, the ceo of tops said there are no plans to put more stores on theast side of buffalo. the mayor said his solution in his budget was more money for police and the field shotspotter technology where we are seeing in the moment, people ours seeing white supremacy is a poison but then they go back and they do the same thing that uphold the white supremacy system. amy: you tweeted this week about what you're talking about, went to a hearing on the buffalo budget that was focused on adding $900,000 to the police budget for the purchase of shotspotter, and artificial intelligence tool that finds sounds that resemble gunshots and alerts police officers. you wrote your biggest concern is that it doesn't work. explain. >> multiple studies show it does
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not work. it picks up sounds like helicopters, backfires from cars, fireworks and identifies it as gunshots. the most effective way to identify when a shooting hpens is a person calling 911 dispatch. shotspotter has proven time and time aga to not ly be impetus of the necessary police presence in certain neighborhoods, but in rochester, the rochester police department was able to get shotspotter to ange t classification of the sound heard in an attempt to frame a black man that they shot down for a tinted murder on a police it was pven, he was exonerated. but incidences like this is what we should be paying attention to en we make these types of decisions. these technologies are not what increases -- decreases gun
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violence in communities. what decreases, particularly like these buffalo, is good living wage jobs, affordable housing, quality education, and access to the basic needs that the community has lacked for so long. amy: can you talk about this 911 call that has become famous now? you have a tops worker who whispering into the phone trying to describe what is happening and the dispatcher yells at the worker because there whispering and hangs up on them? this is in the midst of the massacre. >> again, this is just a symptom of a disease that we have especially in western new york about the way our public servants treat people who are asking for help -- amy: let me go to the clip. this was played on buffalo tv
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station wgrz. the worker, latisha rogers, an assistant office manager at the tops supermarket, describes what happened. >> i did not see much at all. i just heard the gunshots and dropped down to the ground and waited for him to stop. he would not stop, so i tried to call 911 and i was whispering because i could hear him close by. when i whispered on the phone to 911, the dispatcher started yelling at me saying, why are you whispering? you don't have to whisper. i'm trying to tell her, ma'am, he's in the store, i am scared for my life. she said something crazy to me and then she hung up in my face and i had to call my boyfriend to tell him to call 911. amy: india? >> that 911 dispatcher is a
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civilian employee that paid for with tax dollars. there is no excuse for that type of treatment and that type of behaor. i hope a lot of these stories that are coming out about corrections officers, polic officers, public servants making light of this situation, i hope they're all held fully accountable. amy: finally, india, can you end by talking a little more about one of the victims who you knew, the one we talked about that your first standby on monday, cap massey? her funeral will be held monday. >> she is going to be sorely missed. i know by myself but also her family and this community. she was the cofounder of an organization called we are women warriors. she was a mentor and supporter of me and the work i did in the
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fruit belt where she lived, where her family has been for many, many decades. she was always an advocate and fighter for what is just and what is right. i want to make sure her legacy lives on and i want to do all of the things i know i can do to continue to make her proud,. amy: i want to thank you so much. again, our condolences to you, india, and of the whole buffalo community. india walton, former buffalo mayoral candidate and longtime community activist. did you intimate, india that you're going to run again for office? i think she just froze so we will have to get to that the next time we interview india, now a senior advisor for special projects for the working families party and a senior strategic organizer with rootsaction. next up, we look at the fight
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for reproductive rights as oklahoma lawmakers approved the most sweeping abortion ban in the country. we will speak with reporter amy littlefield. stay with us. ♪♪ [music break]
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amy: "history repeats" by brittany howard. this is democracy now!,, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. oklahoma lawmakers have passed a bill that bans nearly all abortions starting at fertilization. the measure now heads to republican governor kevin stitt, who's promised to sign what will become the nation's strictest anti-abortion law. the legislation allows any state -- anyone to sue doctors who perform abortions or anyone who aids or abets an abortion, modeled on texas' anti-abortion law that took effect in september.
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the vote in oklahoma comes just weeks after the publication of a leaked draft opinion showed the supreme court was preparing to overturn roe v. wade. to look at the oklahoma bill and the broader fight for reproductive rights, we are joined by amy littlefield, the abortion access correspondent for the nation. she has a new cover story headlined "the fight for abortion after roe falls." amy, it is great to have you back under very difficult circumstances, to say the least. first, comment on what this law is in oklahoma and then we will go broader. >> it is great to be back with you, amy, even under these really chilling circumstances. as you mentioned, a's legislature has passed a total abortion ban. the only exceptions are to save the life of a pregnant person or cases of rape or incest that have to be reported to law enforcement. these are very, very narrow exceptions that are subject to the interpretations of medical
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providers for one to be terrified of violating this law. as you point out, this all begins at fertilization, which basic science lesson here for a, lawmakers, fertilization is actually before pregnancy begins. the fertilized egg when it implants and at the uterus, that is when pregnancy starts, k? fertilization at the moment of this firm and egg coming together is that -- we don't actually know when that happens inside a person's body. to recap sort of how we got here and where we are -- amy: by the way,, not be inside a person's body when we're talking about people who are using ivf and what that means, if a lab assistant drops a test tube, will they be charged with murder? >> these are all really important questions, amy, but it is possible lawmakers have not considered this and the sort of race to try to become the state with the harshest abortion ban
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in the country. i think there are a lot of questions being raised. another major question is, how does this law interact with all of the other abortion bans and attempts to restrict abortion that obama has passed, including a law that would take effect when the supreme court decision comes down overturning roe v. wade, criminal abortion ban? to sort of recap how we got here, i want to remind listeners for nine months, texas has been living under a six week abortion ban that does not quite go as far as oklahoma, it allows abortions up to about six weeks of pregnancy, but you have already seen over the past nine months a huge cascading effect of just one state having not even a total ban in place, which is appointment times stretching on for up to four weeks at clinics in the region, patients having to flock to surrounding states, an untold number of
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people not getting the care they need, and we know the beginning with the begin ash with the texas ban, about half of those patients were going to oklahoma. i don't know how many listeners know this because with the news of the supreme court that has been lost but two weeks ago, obama passed its own six-week ban. both texas and obama have been living under six week abortion bans where enforcement -- oklahoma have been living under six week abortion bans or private bounty hunters can sue anyone who aids in events and abortion and that is the way these laws get around the courts and the way these laws are enforced. oklahoma's total ban is the same citizen enforcement mechanism. amy: explain. if you are a taxi driver who brings a pregnant person to a clinic, you can be charged with aiding and abetting if you are sued by a person in new york who
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hears about this? >> right. it is really sweeping. the idea someone who aids or abets an abortion, especially when you consider the antiabortion movement has worked so hard over the years to make it almost impossible, especially for low income people to get an abortion without a lot of help. it is clear the intended target beyond abortion providers, the intended target of these laws are groups like grassroots abortion funds that help people pay for their abortions. we have already seen attempt to criminalize these groups and try to get a hold of their donor lists in texas by the same people behind these enforcement laws. they want to make people afraid to even donate to an abortion fund. what i have been told in talking with these groups, this effort has backfired and what they have seen is an uptick in donations. it is interesting. a lot of people might look at these private enforcement laws and say, well, after the supreme
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court overturns roe v. wade, we won't need these private enforcement laws because states can just ban abortion and prosecutors can enforce criminal laws, right? i talked to the architects of the private civil enforcement mechanism and he told he does not think that is the case. he thinks the private enforcement will be important after roe because what happens if you start to see shifts in the makeup of some of these states and have elected state officials or prosecutors who don't want to charge people criminally, well, then you have to have the situation where you can have a private resident enforce our private enforcement mechanism if the state oicials and prosecutors are not willing to do so. i think we are not witnessing these private civil enforcement out to under laws go away after the dobbs decision. amy: i want to stick with this of going after donors to funds. you have the little donors and
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you have the big ones. tell us who vlad is. >> when you look at sort of the reproductive health care nonprofit world, first of all, we have to look at structurally the fact the antiabortion movement over time has systematically tried to cut off every form of public funding to abortion care that they can. enormous amounts of money has to be raised and spent every year just paper people's abortions. because and a majority of states, medicaid recipients don't have access to that care under their insurance coverage. huge amounts of money has to be raised and spent an huge amount of the most dynamic, energetic people in the movement are working on issues like how do we pay for people's abortions? how do we get them onto ailanes or buses or get them the care they need? it is a massive logistic operation that requires a lot of money. then you have the organizing
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work on top of that. vlad is this cheeky knowing that some people and at the reproductive health care wld use the large anonymous donor. the large anonymous donor is -- amy: very large? >> very large anonymous donor. he is very large. this is the code word for warren buffett of berkshire hathaway fame, the 91-year-old business magnate. warren buffett -- amy: from omaha. >> yes, indeed. his sort of constellation a family foundations has really been the backbone of private funding for the reproductive health care landscape for a long time. i think -- amy: named after his late wife. >> right, and a notoriously large anonymous donor. a ton of groups rely on. where this becomes a problem,
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structurally, we have a movement reliant on the whims of leaner back foundation, you can end up with what one organizer described to me as boom/bust cycles. you get a grant, the money is there for a project and then it is gone. this is a problem, especially because warren buffett has said he wants all of his money, all of his berkshire hathaway holdings expended for philanthropic purposes within 10 years of his estate being settled. a reminder, he is 91. when that happens -- he does not want to put into endowments for foundations, he wants it spent on current needs. we could be seeing this massive sort of boom/bust coming that -- situations like this have already happened. there's another philanthropy linked that had a huge effect on the movement a few years back. they're sort of a structural
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problem of relying on billionaire back foundations that i should say is not unique to reproduction but there's a huge question of how this emergency situation that we are facing, who is going to pay for it, and there are enormous efforts going on at the state level to try to say, look, the state government is not the federal government, it needs to pay for these health care services, not private donors. amy: i want to get your comment on the speech made in house, wanted her to democratic commerce member lucy mcbath of georgia who is actually running in nexteek's georgia primary. during the meeting as a house judiciary committee wednesday, she shared her personal story about accessing reproductive care. >> like so many women in america for years, i struggle to get pregnant. my husband and i, we tried everything we could do to start a family of our own. finally, we were successful.
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i had never been so happy. i prayed for this moment for so many years. i wanted to tell everyone. i just wanted to shout it from all of the mountaintops. for weeks, i began to dream about our life and our future together. and then one day, i woke up covered in blood. it is hard to describe the agony of a miscarriage. it is heartbreak. it is helplessness. it is pain and it is profound sadness. millions of women suffer from them. and i have heard from many who felt guilty like i did, who felt as though we were not worthy of having a child. those are the same feelings that crept through my mind. and every time i've had these
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difficult discussions with other women, i remind them that they are strong, that they are powerful beyond measure, and that their worth is far more than their ability to procreate. however, it seems those in support of this ruling disagree. after my second is carriage, i wondered in my grief again if god had decided i was never meant to be a mother. so when i finally got pregnant again, i was overjoyed. it was as if i believed that god was giving me and my husband, finally, he had a plan for us to be parents. but after four months, while feeling tear and trauma in my het, i was rushed to the emergency room. there was my doctor and my husband.
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i learned i had suffered a fetal demise, or a stillbirth. there again, i was filled with anguish and sorrow and guilt, and i triedo hard and still i felt like i failed trying to be a mother. my doctor thought it would be better and safer to end the pregnanc naturally, without the medicines so commonly used. so for two weeks, i carried my dead fetus and waited for me to go into labor for two weeks, people passed me on the street telling me how beautiful i looked, asking how far along i was, and saying there were so excited for me and my future with my child. for two weeks, i carried a lost
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pregnancy and the torment that comes with it. i never went into labor on my own. when my doctor finally induced me, i faced the pain of lor without hope for a living child. this is my story. it is uniquelyy story. and yet it is not so unique. millions of women in america, women in this room, women at your homes, and women you love and cherish have suffered a miscarriage. and so i ask on behalf of these women, after which failed pregnancy should i have been imprisoned? would it have been after the first miscarriage? after doctors used what would be
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an illegal drug to abort the lost fetus? would you have put me in jail ter the second miscarriage? perhaps that would ha been the time. forced to reflect in confinement at the guilt i felt, the guilt that so many women feel after losing their pregnancy. or would you have put me behind bars after my stillbirth? after i was forced to carry a dead fetus for weeks, after asking god if i was ever going be able traise a child? and i asked because the same medicine used to treat myailed pregnancies is the same th states like texas would make illegal. i ask because if alabama makes abortion murder, does it make miscarriage manslaughter? i ask because i want to know if the next woman who has a miscarriage at three months, if
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she will be forced to carry her dead fetus to term? so for the women in your life whose stories you do not know, for e womeacross the country whose lives you may not understand, and for the women in america who have gone through things you simply cannot comprehend, i say to you this, women's rights are human rights. reproductive health care is health care. medical decisions should be made by women and those that they trust, not the politicns and officials. we have a choice. we can be the nation that rolls back the clock come that rolls back the rights of women and strips them of their very liberty, or we could be the nation of choice, the nation whe every woman c make her own choice. freedom is our right to choose. amy: that was georgia congress
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woman lucy mcbath speaking on wednesday on the house judiciary committee hearing on abortion access. a year after that stillbirth she described, lucy mcbath gave birth to her son jordan davis. in 2012, jordan was shot dead by a white man over a dispute about loud music at a gas station in jacksonville, florida. jordan was 17 years old. before running for congress, lucy mcbath became a leading advocate for gun control. still with us, amy littlefield. this is a powerful address. real, human experience. an, if you can take off from there and also talk about the phone call that you were on. a number of people were on talking about what to do at the supreme court. >> it is just heartbreaking. just to think about the layer's
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of loss that lucy mcbath has endured. losing a child who was shot to death by white man in a parking lot because he and his friends were clang loud music, right? and her story just shows these are the women, these are the situations where people are going to die when roe v. wade falls. we have access to safe abortion -inducing medicaon now. we did not before roe v. wad, but women in situations, especially black women of people of col in situions where they are losing pregnanc when they show up in a history and estate like -- in state like oklahoma and the medical staff don't know, is this person sick enough? are they dead and upper us to be able to terminate a pregnancy or they're not trained on how to end that pregnancy becae there is no legal abortion in the state and all the people who are trained on how to provide that care are not allowed to do that anymore.
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i'm not sure anyone is prepared for what happens when a country thatas theighest matnal mortaly rate in e develope world at a rate that is three times higher for black women runs up against a stem of ma criminalization that also disproportionately affects black people runs up against total abortionan and the crinalation of peoplwho help people get access to abortions or maybe even the people themselves. i'm not sure anyone is prepared for what that is what a look like. but i think the groups that i really turn to that are mobilizing most aggressively around this are reproductive justice groups led by black women, led by people of color at the state level. i want to tell you about michelle. she is reproductive justice leader in mississippi. which has been at the center of the supreme court case. she is been quoted everywhere. she is out talking at rallies, in the media because mississippi is at the center of the supreme court case.
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her organization has a budget of $100,000. she has not been able to leave her full-time job. she is fighting for voting rights, thinking about mernal mortality. these arthe underfunded organizations and the folks who are really on the front lines. yesterday i was part of the call where a of state organizations, these were actually former affiliates in the state, got together and made this big call we need to expand the supreme court. i thought it was striking, this call to eend the supreme court in coalition with the progressive members of congress with coming from the state, coming from a place where abortion has already been almost restricted out of existence for so long. amy: amy littlefield, thank you for being with us. this is a discussion we will continue on democracy now! amy is a abortion access correspondent for the nation, where her new cover story is called "the fight for abortion after roe falls." that does it for our show.
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