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tv   American Voices With Alicia Menendez  MSNBC  August 1, 2021 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT

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♪ ♪ as we begin a new hour, deal or no deal? the is hammering out the infrastructure bill. text of the bill is ininnocent. we'll keep an eye out. also this hour, we look at texas. where lone star republicans are using political advantage to take culture wars to a new level. from immigration to the pandemic, voting and the school
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system, in just moments julian castro and joaquin castro with a warning about it happening in your state, too and how to fight it. pandemic backlash as delta rages, new mask and vaccine mandates are being mocked and even ignored. and trump's attempts to keep the white house and the mountain of cash he's raising to win it back. with no federal help in place, millions now face the reality of eviction. what to do if you are one of them. this is "american voices." ♪♪ we begin this hour in texas. tuesday marks two years since a gunman killed 22 people at an el paso walmart targeting mexican-americans. it's a tragedy as how powerful words are. you'll remember authorities claim the accused gunman bought into donald trump's anti-immigrant rhetoric and if you think republican politicians have learned their lesson from trump's words and attacks on immigrants, think again.
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greg abbott ordered state troopers to pull over vehicles with migrants blaming them for rise in covid infections. the doj has since sued the state over the move. it's this type of anti-immigrant scapegoating that can lead to dangerous consequences. "the dallas morning news" writes two years after the alleged shooter drove ten hours from allen to el paso, to quote, stop the hispanic invasion of texas, conditions and red rhetoric have titaned. this is especially the case in texas where once-contrite politicians are emboldened and political promises are broken and gun laws have been loosened, making it possible for anyone over age 18 to buy a gun. in texas, instead of passing gun safety measures after a mass shooting, the state's ultra conservative legislature made it easier. then there was the party's rejection of science. governor greg abbot refuses to make the schools mandate, as cases rise among the unvaccinated. the castro brothers, msnbc
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political analyst and julian castro and texas congressman, joaquin castro. it is great to see you. start with the doj's decision for its prove to restrict transportation of migrants. the governor now using migrants as a political tool to shift the blame for the surge in new covid cases and why this is particularly alarming is because it comes two years after the gunman fueled by anti-immigrant rhetoric from president trump killed 23 people at an el paso walmart. does the governor understand the harm he can cause by his words and actions. >> governor abbott knows exactly when he's doing. he's putting a target on backs of brown-skinned immigrants and he's scared of losing his republican primary and he's using everything he can to play to his base and he's issued an executive order encouraging law enforcement to basically stop anybody who they think might be carrying migrants, but there's -- how would you determine that?
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how would you figure that out in a fair and reasonable way? so what it's basically done is opened up the possibility that people can be stopped if they have brown skin and other folks in the car for no reason at all and it's shameless. it's completely irresponsible, and you're right, it harkens back to two years ago when a mad man drove ten hours and killed 23 people because he considered them, quote, unquote, hispanic invaders to texas, and that invasion language by state officials, whether it's george p. bush, recently recently, unfortunately, and dan patrick and others has only ratcheted up. >> i want to reflect on the lives lost during that shooting. how do you and fellow texans plan to honor the victims this tuesday? >> you will see a lot of memorials here in texas and remembrances. this was such a tragedy for the city of el paso, and for the state of texas and the latino community not just in my home state, but really, across the country. >> secretary castro, it strikes me that while you have the
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governor blaming migrants for the surge, he's also rejecting cdc guidance. we spoke about governor abbott's ban. take a listen. >> i think that it's horrible to have our governor basically leaving our schoolchildren under 12 absolutely defenseless in this pandemic, threatening our schools with loss of funding if they implement masking requirements. parents are incredibly upset. at the very least local school districts should be able to make their own decisions for their local communities and their governor's orders is a term. ing to take that away. >> secretary castro, you have kids. i want to hear both your reaction as a parent and your sense as someone who once ran a municipal government of how local governments are supposed to fight back against this rejection of science? >> as a policymaker steve adler
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in austin is echoing what you hear throughout the state. mayors and school districts, superintendents, board member, city council members are begging governor abbott to at least allow school districts and local communities to fashion their own covid safety precautions including requiring that students and teachers, educators in schools wear mask because of the surge in the delta variant and the danger that presents all over the state. he hasn't done that. basically, he has become a mini donald trump, anti-science, anti-immigrant, anti-common sense and very divisive. as a parent, i'm deeply concerned. both of my kids, a 12-year-old daughter and 6-year-old son go to school in san antonio, and like a lot of parents i'm wondering exactly how they're going to keep the kids and teachers safe especially because they're not fully empowered in those school districts to do so.
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it's giving a lot of parents pause, and if the governor thinks he's doing himself any favors, he's not. >> they're all different stripes who see this as knuckle headed. as seeing as lacking common sense and joaquin is right. he's doing this because he's trying to appeal, woe have a republican primary base because he has 11, and he's afraid of losing. so he's sacrificing the health, potentially of all of our concern in order to keep his seat. >> congressman, i want to be transparent about how we all came to be here today talking about this. my team and i get on a call where we talk about the stories that we talk about, and it was very important to me to mark the
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two-year anniversary of the el paso shooting and we needed to talk about the doj and voting rights and when we stepped back and we said, wait a second. these are all texas stories and you can extrapolate them all to be national stories. you have peers who are right now in washington, d.c., trying to take a stand. your sense of where that fight for voting rights stands right now and what it says that all of these stories are originating out of texas. >> well, texas is just the beginning for these very conservative trump-owned republicans, and i'm so proud of the state reps who are in washington, d.c., who so far have been able to stop greg abbot and the republican party in text tex, suppressing voting rights. the u.s. has to take action and has to pass hr-1, if you look at the gerrymandering -- and we'll have more than we've ever had before. >> i have so much i want to talk to you about, but i do want to
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talk about the eviction moratorium especially since you used to run housing and urban development. we've been talking a lot about renters. i want to expand that out to talk about the fact that the cares act and mortgage forbearance is also expiring. on top of having a housing crisis in this country related to renters, is it possible that we're also going to have a mortgage crisis? >> it absolutely is. you have a lot of homeowners out there who during this pandemic were able to get forbearance because of federal government action and also being able to work with their banks and that's going to disappear. that's going to mean a lot of homeowners find themselves not unlike renters. they will owe a lot of money they don't have. sometimes that will be put on the end of the note, but still,
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they're in a precarious position and there's a tremendous amount of concern among homeowners and renters and that's happening at the same time that for renters, 80% of them who owe back rent are in areas where the coronavirus is surging. you add all of that up and it's a perfect storm of bad news for our country, and really, it didn't have to happen. we didn't have to get to this point. there was a ball that was dropped here. the biden administration could have extended ed cdc moratorium. the supreme court did look disapprovingly at the cdc moratorium a few weeks ago ask it didn't strike it down and many in the progressive caucus called for the biden administration to extend the cdc moratorium knowing full well that it may be struck down can
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giving localities more time to get the $47 billion of rental assistance that's out there into the hands ever renters and giving the opportunities for homeowners to get relief as well. >> secretary castro, congressman castro, thank you both so much for being here. next, the delta spike and backlash to mandates. it is making health care harder. two doctors are here to just lay it all out. and new details about trump's final days in the white house and the growing mountain of cash that could help him win it back. first to richard lui with a look at other big stories we're tracking. >> thanks, alicia. the united states -- iran denies involvement. u.s. secretary of state antony blinken says, quote, there's no justification of this attack which follows a pattern of attacks and other belligerent behavior. smoke is triggering air quality warnings in the midwest. those with respiratory or heart disease, the elderly and children are encouraged to stay
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indoors. more "american voices" after this break. american voices" aftr this break sorry? well, since you asked. it finds discounts and policy recommendations, so you only pay for what you need. limu, you're an animal! who's got the bird legs now? only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪
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new covid cases are still spiking coast to coast. the cdc now asking everyone living within the red portion of this map that you are looking at to mask up indoors regardless of your vaccination status which, as you can see, is pretty much everywhere. >> vaccinated people are capable of getting the virus in their nose and throat and they do seem to have high enough levels of virus that they might be contagious and hence the reason if you're in a community where this virus is spreading which is about 75% of counties right now, it is prudent to put on a mask even if you're vaccinated. >> states like texas and florida among the hardest hit right now. you can see that on that map. this weekend, texas surpassed the state of new york in covid deaths.
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covid is now second to california. also this weekend, florida hit an all-time pandemic record for daily cases. more than 21,000 again in one single day which according to the associated press accounts for nearly a fifth of all new cases in the united states. yet their governor continues to rail against mask mandates and vaccine requirements. dr. anthony fauci had this to say earlier today about that kind of decision making. >> i disagree with them. i respectfully disagree with them. the fact is there are things that are individual responsibilities that one has and there are things that have to do with you individually which also impact others, and the spread of infection that we're seeing now, the spread of cases, john, is impacting everyone in the country. this weekend wrapped up with massive crowds like lalapalooza, and it can draw in around 1
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million people. while dr. anthony fauci warns the recent outbreaks caused by the delta variant will likely get worse before they get better, he says another lockdown is unlikely. >> i don't think we're going to see lockdowns. i think we have enough of the percentage of people in the country, not enough to crush the outbreak, but i believe enough to not allow us to get into the situation we were in last winter, but things are going to get worse. >> with me now, dr. ebony jade hilton and with goodstock consulting, llc and associate professor of anesthesiology at the university of virginia, also joining us, msnbc contributor dr. kavita patel and served in the obama administration. another lockdown is unlikely despite rising cases and breakthrough cases among vaccinated american, what then, would it take for another lockdown? what would trigger that? >> right.
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honestly, i'm not sure what it would trigger. right now modeling is showing that we may be anticipating 200,000 cases a day. last september 1st. models are also showing 5,000 people dying a day by september 1st. we feel we've been playing catch-up when it comes to covid-19 and we need to start being proactive in our response because it's not forgiving and at this point, with the new findings of even vaccinated persons although vaccines have done a fantastic job at keeping us out of the hospital and keeping us alive, we are 25 times less likely to die if you're vaccinated, but what are the consequences of persons being affected, will we develop a variant that will evade the vaccine for us and if we don't think of the rest of the world is only 15% vaccinated at this point. >> dr. patel, as someone who has shaped federal policy when you hear dr. fauci saying it is unlikely we'll end up in a lockdown?
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does that sound right to you? what are the conversations that are being had behind closed doors. >> it does, and i have to be honest is outside of all of the measures we've had, travel restrictions and lockdowns had the least effect on stopping this virus and vaccines are the best wall of defense and the next layer of defense really are masks. that's why we're asking people to wear masks. it's not a reversal and it's just an additional layer of precaution because as dr. hilton mentioned, we haven't even gotten to the peak of where we're at, and i hope we do in the next several weeks and we're still looking at more cases every day. >> i also want to ask you, dr. hilton, this is what the nih director, dr. francis collins says about when vaccinated people need to wear masks. take a listen. >> if you're talking about a party that i might have at my house for people who are fully vaccinated, i do not believe that we need to put masks on, how are you going to be sure about people's vaccination
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status and maybe there's immunocompromised people there are not actually fully protected and then the dynamic changes a little bit. >> dr. hilton, i've got to admit to you, it makes me wish that i was better with statistics because that's what we're asking people to run their own risk assessment. >> right. and i think that's what everyone has to understand is that there's always a risk, right? and it's what risk are you willing to take? what we know is that right now, when we're looking at privacy, we know a majority of those person, 74% of those people were vaccinated and still had an outbreak. the united states has been hyperfocussed and obsessed with just the death count. i say it again and again, there are more consequences to covid-19 than just death including long covid which studies show that persons who are infected between 10% to 30% including our children, are developing these long symptoms
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that are lasting for better parts of a year. what does that mean? what does that do to your body and what is the incident of developing chronic illnesses related to lung injury, brain injury, it is not worth it. put on a simple mask. it does not hurt you. >> israel began offering a third shot of the pfizer vaccine to people 60 and older and starting next month, britain will offer booster vaccines to 32 million people in the country. the fda, the cdc and the world health organization that says boosters are unnecessary at this time citing a lack of data. what do you make of boosters? are they too precious in the desire to have all of that data? >> yeah, alicia. look, i think we mounted incredible data especially for healthcare workers, people over the age of 60. organ transplant recipients and
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hiv patients and the list goes on. these are patients for which there's very solid evidence in data that a third shot of the same doses of mrna vaccines and having said all of, that i would take getting more americans vaccine aid the first time around any day because that will help us all including those of us that probably need a booster. here's what's the regulatory hurdle, we can't just give people a third shot even if we wanted to because we're under emergency authorization, so we need a combination of fda action and cdc recommendation, and the mounting evidence will result in one, the drug being safely approved and i'm sorry, the vaccine being safely approved and being able to then offer boosters. alicia, it's not as if giving boosters is some logistical ease and we need to start planning today for whatever it might look like because they know that it will take months to get logistics because americans will be in fear that they need one and not everyone will
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necessarily need one right away. >> spoken as one who will have a front seat in government. next, building for 2024, the former president hasn't officially said he's running. we've got a new look at just how much money he's raised giving him a leg up in the republican field. plus, the eviction moratorium has expired. millions left in the lurch. advice on what to do if you get a notice to vacate. we are looking at the floor on the bipartisan infrastructure bill. moments ago, senator warren told me a vote could happen tonight or tomorrow. stay with us. and one we explore. one that's been paved and one that's forever wild. but freedom means you don't have to choose just one adventure. you get both.
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a cancer on our constitutional republic. those were the words of liz cheney tuesday describing the capitol attack and the big lie that helped fuel it. her republican colleagues see it differently, they blame nancy
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pelosi for the security at the capitol. >> i'll make this one prophecy. if we win the majority, which i know we're going to do, you're all invited. [ cheering ] i want you to watch nancy pelosi hand me that gavel. [ cheering ] it will be hard not to hit her with it, but i will -- [ inaudible ] >> mccarthy's office says the minority leaders was, quote, obviously joking. joining me now msnbc contributor and former u.s. attorney joyce vance and huff post senior justice reporter ryan riley. court records show dozens of capitol rioters threatened speaker pelosi and that seems
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particularly relevant given that you have republicans putting her at the center. talk to me about why that is ridiculous and what you think their strategy is there. >> it's ridiculous in terms of the capitol police. first of all, any member of congress has in this also. the capitol police board in so far as there is oversight for members of congress and of course, there is another chamber. there is the house and there's the senate, right? both the leaders were in charge of that oversight. so you know, senate -- then-senate majority leader mitch mcconnell had just as much of a role in the oversight of january 6th in so little as there was. with all of these capitol cases and the constant repeated theme i've seen over and over again with these documents when you talk about people wandering through the halls searching for nancy pelosi.
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you watch the videos and it is disturbing. you have a mob looking for nancy pelosi, where's nancy? where's nancy? we see that in court documents. that was one of the rooms they targeted. they went into computer and stole that. members of her staff were hidden behind doors and you have people literally locking doors and hiding under tables as the mob was outside. any jokes about violence about nancy pelosi should be out of bounds. jokes about violence aren't good in politics in january, and especially after january 6th and we are six months out and it was a tasteless joke to me given the political targeting that we've seen on the right against nancy pelosi. >> joyce, as they are making those jokes and as they are trying to deflect, we are learning what role some gop lawmakers may have played in the insurrection. slate reporting congressman mo brooks was wearing a bulletproof vest at the january 6th rally and jim jordan telling spectrum news he spoke to trump.
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take a listen. >> did you speak with president trump on january 6th? >> i spoke with the president last week. i speak with the president all of the time. i spoke with him on january 6th. i talk with president trump all of the time and i don't think that's unusual. >> i'm not sure if you're clear, joyce, how will the justice department hold him accountable? >> so there's a fascinating nexus going on here, alicia, between congress investigating january 6th in their select committee proceedings which, of course, that's a fact-finding mission. no one will be at least, not directly indicted as a result of that, and then we have civil cases going on where this week, doj decided that at least in the case of mo brooks, it didn't look like he was acting within the scope of his federal duties so rather than the federal government stepping in to replace brooks, he actually has to move forward in the civil suit where representative smallwell has made civil charges
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that involve january 6th. of course, this all could feed into the federal criminal investigation being conducted by the u.s. attorney's office in the district of columbia. evidence could be developed in any of these three separate investigations that will ultimately help the justice department do the most important thing it has to do here which is hold the people who are most culpable for events on january 6th accountable for that conduct. >> ryan, the investigation is on track to be the doj's largest ever. what can you tell us about the overall time line and the trends you're seeing across capitol riot cases because for us we dip into one and we step out and you look at them in the totality, what are you seeing? >> this is something that will be with us for a very, very long time. this is the largest investigation in terms of number of defendants and the extent of the evidence and there's a plethora of information out
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there and a ton of data. one assistant u.s. attorney was saying that there's more video evidence than there is in the entire library of congress and if you compare that the scope of the evidence is overwhelming and that's something that the federal bureaucracy is having trouble catching up with. a lot of this is organized and a lot of this is organizing this pretty well and when you talk about that on the back end and the fbi that often deals mostly in email and is often hesitant to put things into writing and there are things in the back end that are making this complicated and that will be a problem because judges won't have so much patience and they won't have unending patience and if people want to go to trial and invoke their speedy trial rights and that will be for the government to be prepared and make sure they're getting all of the information they need and all of those disclosure to have the ability given their best defense. >> given what ryan is saying about how long this could take,
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where do you start? >> you start with these cases on video that we've seen the fbi reaching out asking for help identifying, and you begin to work on those cases and you move through the system. simultaneously, you are trying to focus on the evidence of what appears to be the worst crimes, active violence and people who were perhaps co-conspirators and we've seen those charges coming forward. here's the real problem prosecutors face and this is aside from the resource problems which ryan is wise to point out. doj is never as well funded as folks in the private sector are so it's tough to deal with all of this video evidence and figure out things like discovery in the criminal cases, but beyond that, just the sheer bulk of these cases and not knowing which cases might lead elsewhere complicate it because how federal prosecutions work and we are used to this from our conversations as far back as the mueller investigation is you start with the people in front of you and you try to work up the chain. were they part of a conspiracy?
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is there anyone else higher up who is more responsible? it's a big job. >> joyce, brian, thank you both. at this moment millions of us in fear of eviction. if you are among them and you do get a notice i what should you do next? real-world advice after the break. the power of saying thanks to the people who helped you get through the pandemic. not family, but friends. two of mine join the show. stay with us. how. stay with us and savings like that will have you jumping for joy. now, get new lower auto rates with allstate. because better protection costs a whole lot less. you're in good hands with allstate. click or call for a lower auto rate today.
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their homes in the next two months due to eviction. >> we call eviction the scarlet "e" because when a family faces an eviction, they are often barred from getting access to housing, to jobs or to loans as they, you know recover from the experience of an eviction. >> but if you do find yourself with an eviction notice on your door, no matter where you are, experts all agree -- >> the number one thing you can do is find an attorney. the more you can get the advice the better because these processes can move quickly. there's a lot of complicated paperwork. if you're doing it for the first time it's likely you can make a mistake and talk to that attorney and get advice. >> go to your local federal services office and they're usually free or they may refer you to a non-profit legal provider for eviction cases.
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when you go, it's important to bring receipts. >> documenting everything you can, if you can take photos of any interactions you have with your landlord, take photos of your possessions or any -- anything that could be used in court proceedings to help defend your case. >> even if you haven't yet received an eviction notice, experts urge if you're struggling to pay rent you should access the billions of dollars made available by the federal government. >> there's a historic amount of rental assistance available. the biden administration has allocated over $46 million to those in the u.s. and that rental assistance money is want reaching people in time. so that means 10 in two are waiting, and you may face eviction in the weeks ahead. >> there's plenty of assistance to go around and not all of this is being used.
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msnbc contact the district of columbia, 26 had distributed less than 10% of their first allocations. >> i have money to give and what i need is applications and i need time. >> can people still access the rental assistance each after they are potentially at rick of eviction or when they get that eviction notice? >> absolutely. the time line can be long, but the sooner you get in line to receive that funding the more likely you are to receive it before that eviction trial takes place. with the guidance of your attorney potentially to reach out to your landlord and just let them know that you're waiting on that rental assistance. in a lot of cases the rental assistance that's available can not only pay all of the back debt and pay several months of rent into the future. so if your landlord is willing to wait that check that they'll receive is potentially significant. >> the stakes are high as this eviction moratorium comes to a close. >> the same communities that have been affected by layoffs,
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that have been affected by covid-19, they may be at risk of both losing their homes and also contracting covid-19 or the delta variant at this critical time. >> but the impacts of an eviction can last long after a family is out the door. the consequences of an eviction will be multigenerational. it's a traumatic, adverse childhood experience for kids who have to go through that, as well. those who suffer eviction suffer two years after that experience. >> the multigenerational impact causing setbacks and advocates hoping that can change that. eviction is often talked about as being the result of poverty and really in the united states it is often the cost of poverty. so it's a frightening moment for that reason and it is so important state and county governments move quickly to get that rental assistance dollars out the dollar because those federal funds can resolve those debts and prevent evictions from
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taking place. >> ahead, have you thought about thanking your friends for your support during the pandemic? two of mine crash the show next and a quick look at the senate floor where we are waiting for movement on the bipartisan infrastructure bill. a vote can happen tonight or early morning. we will keep an eye out. but first, a preview of what's ahead tonight on msnbc. hi there. i'm joshua johnson. tonight at 9:00 on "the week," ben carden will join us. where do things stand with the bipartisan infrastructure plan. join us for "the week" tonight at 9:00 eastern here on msnbc. n. other than work, it's the weekend. yeah, yeah. [ squawk ]
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in march 2020 there is a reason the song supalonely reached billions on tiktok. it captured our national mood. a year into the pandemic americans are even lonelier. 41% of adults don't have a best
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friend. joining me now to discuss the state of american friendship, dr. sue varma assistant professor of psychiatry, marisa lee, author of the forthcoming book, and author of the forthcoming book where speaking the life lessons of kamala harris. it is great to see you all. doctor, i'll start with you. that survey shows the number were americans with best friends has been declining for decades. what do you think is behind that trend? >> i think a variety of reasons. one of the reasons might be that the fact that our mobility has increased. people are working far away from home. we saw that during the pandemic and the trend exploded even further and people want freedom
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and prioritizing work of our social skills and people are leaving their jobs. in fact, the largest group of people who would stay at a job one or two years are people under the age of 40. so we're seeing larger groups of people are physically distant and also that our priorities are about achievement and individualism and nothing wrong with that and it's coming at the expense of social cohesion. >> one of the reasons that i wanted to talk to you and my team is goating me because they and i want them to be the premise of this and can you make sure i say this last name correctly. we are internet friends who would have hung out a lot more had the pandemic not taken over. you is you have built an online community where people have the experience of connection and friendship. but i'm not sure, you know, your 50,000 members would call you their best friend. >> i would be honored if they did, but certainly, you know, i think this speaks to the fact that the studies that we have looked at i don't think are
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accurately capturing that younger people are making friends online and building friendships online so to that point we over met once. i have never met marisa in person, but we have facetimed and talked on the phone and texted regularly, and i consider her a close dear friend, and so friendship i don't think can be defined the way it used to be. >> yeah. >> it needs to kind of be viewed with a lens of what does digital friendship look like? it means just as much as an in-person friendship does as well. >> i mean, marisa, you and i have been friends for 20 years and have met in person many times over the course of those 20 years. but i think of friendships like ours because we were in different places had sort of gotten out of focus and came back into focus during the pandemic because all of a sudden location didn't matter, right? you were no longer just hanging out with a person who was around the corner. all of a sudden you were zooming out and locking at who you
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wanted your friends to be. it was also particularly relevant, marisa, because we were all going through a moment of collective grief, and so we needed those friendships more than ever. talk to me about why friendships are so important when we are processing a trauma. >> so, i mean, you know i have an entire chapter in "grief is love" on this concept of friendship and community, and there are two things that i think enable us to maintain these long-term friendships as well as my online friendship that i have with hitha who is a very real friend and that's, you know, being honest about where you are. you know, alicia was someone who i could reach out to this last year when i was having a hard time navigating a number of things in pandemic life, and i also think there is this piece about grace. like i think we're all really busy. everyone has these full lives. i know a lot of people are really struggling to figure out what life looks like in this, you know, kind of bizarre
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pandemic time, and i think leaving room for grace, poet for yourself when you're not necessarily the best friend in the world and also for others to kind of come and go in your life is a really important part of maintaining long-term friendships. >> you know, doctor in the setup to this, we were talking about the fact that none of this is new. we've been watching this evolution of loneliness in the united states for years. i think about a book like "bowling alone" that looks at how our social structures are not built the way they were 20 years ago, 30 years ago. for someone who is watching who may feel that sense of loneliness, how do you begin? do you rekindle friendships? do you rebuild? how do you begin to get back out there? >> absolutely. i think there's so many different ways of doing it, and i love the point that we need to expand our vision and understanding of what friendships look like, and they are not necessarily going to be traditional, so i'm a big believer in the power of micro connection, so anybody from your barista to your dog walker to your door person, anybody that you interface with on a daily level.
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that was something that was taken away from us because we didn't have the smaller ways of connecting during the shutdown. that's one thing. the second piece is i want three key points. when you interact with someone keep it positive. we are going through so much, and that doesn't mean that you can't be real. that's my next point is keep it real and go deep. one of the biggest problems that we have is a lot of our conversations are with people who are situational partners, situational friendships or activity partners so we interface with them in a specific setting and we're not really going deep. in fact, it takes a long time to turn casual friendships into deeper friendships. it takes about 100 hours to build from acquaintances to casual friends for adults and about another 100 hours to go from casual to deep. who amongst us has 200 hours, right, so one way to sort of fast track your friendship is to get keep and authentic and, of course, you want to do that with a trusting person and you want to pick and choose and what i mean by positive is uplifting
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and finding a positive compliment, a statement, something that feels genuine to you and have that person's back and best interest in mind. so much of the loneliness epidemic is not about the paucity or quantity of the connections. it's the quality. it's feeling alienated. it's feeling alone in a roomful of people, so, you know, the third thing is be consistent and be reliable so what we don't realize is that you might make great connections and then what happens a week later, one month later and it's totally okay to say i was thinking about you. send someone a follow-up, think of a point of connection so when somebody is talking to you really listen, and if your agenda is to make friend, make mental note. oh, my gosh, this person loves chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream or the next time i find something, share recommendation, favorite therapist. i'm a big believer obviously in mental health treatment. be open, be honest and be positive and have that person's best interests always at heart. >> hitha, this is why you're such good friends with so many people because you jump into the
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deep end of the pool. i have about 30 seconds left. i have to ask you about this since you've written an entire book about kamala harris, what you learned about her friendships in the process. >> i am amazed at how she basically embodies dr. varma's advice because she really does prioritize her friendships in the micro moments that show has. she has five minutes when she's in the car, she texts a god child and she has many. i actually lost track, but seizes micro moments, follow up, engage and just stay in touch. >> and your friend on the internet asks you to come on television to talk about your friendships, you say yes. thank you all for being a friend. more "american voices" in a movement but first a reminder to catch "the mehdi hasan show" with congressman ilhan omar and congressman schakowsky. that's at 8:00 p.m. eastern only on msnbc. on msnbc
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♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ that's it for me. i hand it over to my friend mehdi hasan, who i also have never met in person. mehdi. >> one day we will soon. thanks so much. have a great rest of your sunday. tonight, on "the mehdi hasan show," "the senate awaits the final text of the bipartisan infrastructure bill, but even if it passes in the senate, is it good enough to win the support of house progressives? i'll ask congresswoman ilhan omar and janet schakowsky. plus, is this guy really going to be the next house speaker? >> i want you to watch nancy pelosi hand me that gavel. [ applause ]


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