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tv   In Depth  CSPAN  August 8, 2009 9:00am-12:00pm EDT

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out i haven't got around to reading it she was quite vexed and i thought a publisher believes in a book that much i have to read it. i also am i going to read another one of our gross this summer that we have been have to coming out that are one of zero about the islamic world, one is called destiny disrupted the history of the world for islamic guys coming in is one of wall narrative history. we know the western area of ancient greeks and romans but this is the islamic world narrative and how in the 19th century they can to clash so tragically. i loved every word of that and read the book and recommended to my reading group which i rarely do as a publisher but we're fine to be discussing the next month. another book is fighting york times united nations appear cheap, for 20 years he was in
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cairo bureau chief and has reported on islam in the u.s. and neil and chile grew up as an oil brat in libya. he. >> two this country for college and decided he wanted to go back and learn arabic and understand the area where he had roughened up in his written a wonderful book. the media relations department of hezbollah wishes you a happy birthday. and i've written some of that vote as he was developing its but i didn't have time to read the whole length but i love so much when i read i decided i want to give the whole thing a great read and i love what people are saying about fat book. in the third book i have to admit has been nice to my bedside many a summer but maybe this is the one i will finally read it the power broker by robert caro. is something i've wanted to refer a long time and is the kind of book for you and i several months to find the time to read it. >> to see more of reading lists
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and other program information visit our web site at if next national public radio news analyst and fox and his political analyst juan williams this fess is sole rights and race relations in the u.s. for culminating in the election of president barack obama barre in the emmy award winning documentary writer and former washington post reporter has author of coal offers six books including "eyes on the prize", "thurgood marshall: american revolutionary" en "enough". the program is three hour spin-off. >> let me begin with a book that came out of 11 years ago called "thurgood marshall: american revolutionary" and you write in the book that he could charm is a racist cop of stories and jokes of you is capable of intimidating black political rivals but he had magna doubts
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about his job on the u.s. supreme court. >> fess very interesting, i think this is part of the difficulty of psychology of being black in america, he was the first person obviously to be on the court and understood right away that as he went through confirmation hearings and then just gone through confirmation hearings with briefing by to clarence thomas hearings and you think minorities and women very difficult and thurgood marshall's last three months and his intellect was question talked about was the smart to really be among the nation's legal elite and said there in judgment as a member of the court and when he gets on the court he really thought i must get the very best in terms of law clerks and assistance and what if the both of the idea that he could, in fact, handle this work and respond to the
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reasons assumptions. >> host: you also a great deal held this theory about how he was elected and also his conversations with lyndon johnson and doubt as to whether he felt it was clear to pick up the phone and call him. >> guest: i use that as the start of a book because in terms of building the narrative his experience in that moment tells you so much about the securities issues you touched on in another moment of his life as he gets on the court read from this are the is the solicitor general and the johnson administration if and he worries that he's not going to get in this opening for for the supreme forfeiture from a shelf and he hears that if president johnson is considering other if laugh-in ever did that he is too controversial because of the history as director of former
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for director of the naacp education fund, were that he does not have a perfect record of the solicitor general and the president johnson wanted him to have so i responded it is to the center and the mississippi and others who had been pressing the first five person to be nominated for aggressively fight to see if they had come his connections because of the naacp facing us in his staking sell in that moment third commercial loans and two president johnson at the party and knows that johnson will be there and he puts on a big soon fade as a party in johnson seasonable some aside and says you're not going to give the job. thurgood marshall feel so believe and, of course, plays it out like no big deal from what i didn't come here thinking he was trying to do my job is but the next day off when he's in his office going to the white house to speak to a bunch of visiting
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students fetus told some by the oval office and say hello to the president and when he doesn't go he clears his throat so he can catch the president's attention did in the u.s. looking at the wire services and the president says hamas and going to push you on the court, and thurgood marshall says, what? what did you cedrics? and it was for him a moment that is so satisfying it was a dream come true. >> host: what does that tell you about lyndon johnson? >> guest: he was a game player, constantly for the you to know that he had control of the situation and he was bigger than new and the you were someone who was a puppet in his game. >> host: for other reviews that came out and vineyard times in 1998 that one to rest for to the end of this term because they editorial where he writes he left the court allowed in
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victorious in spirits but in english over the task. woefully incomplete. >> guest: q1 of that in terms of transforming the country on race that is so many ways the country was headed backward. is so ironic because what a life of accomplishment and you imagine this person would have a sense that he had led a complete life and chief so much parity he was born 1908 in baltimore from maryland in when he dies in the '90s, he has literally transforming the country and so many ways. you can think about 1896, separate but equal, and by midcentury brown vs. provocation which is his handiwork of the end of the ca -- naacp legal one if you turn it from enforcing segregation as a legitimate way to treat its black citizens to one in which the government says we are going to stand tall not only in terms of schoolhouse
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door in topeka, kansas but then leaves to what takes place in schoolhouse doors in terms of universities and mississippi and alabama and the like that leads to arguably the great march on washington passing the civil-rights and the voting rights i've been of that his firm society and yet when he gets on the court especially after earl warren of leaves from the incomes of the chief justice's but especially chief renquist it feels like is shunted off to the left-wing with his friend of bill brennan and people are listening to him and he's not having the opportunity to reshape the law. he's just dealing with what he views as a reactionary right-wing that's constantly undercut a is that only a limited action in other kevin fifth time and again fell and he thinks that all he can do with that point is right is said and hope to become the basis for future majority opinions when the court changes its
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composition. >> host: in describing him use the word exceptional, exceptional family growing up in an exceptional place in baltimore hazmat. >> guest: when addressed in the history. what happened was i had written "eyes on the prize" about the american civil rights movement with it in the course of doing the research for the book had come across the idea that there is one historic figure in this book still live still an active person in the american society thurgood marshall who sits on the supreme court in the late 1980's it is and i thought he lives in the same city as live-in and nobody speaks of this guy. philbin filed a freedom of thurgood marshall, how can that be so i began writing will see him making false and his friends former law clerks asking and i can have access to edit answer was no way, he doesn't talk to reporters. you still mad about bob woodward's book the brethren in
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which she is a rich range of a buffoon and feels the reporters don't understand him and treat him badly. and the way he views himself as someone who has data on a court despite having suffered everything about of the mona that almost killed him to broken bones to the rightward shift, board as the first subpoena lt. court and by the time he gets on there are no minorities of any other kind, no hispanics or women facilities feeling like i in the first person here who's ever had to do penicillin in capital from with alive was on the line and one who understands what is like to be involved in abortion case and use that kind of a lawyer sofia's they're struggling and absolutely a great reporters even when his former friend the famous columnist try to help him do a book fair deal exploded. the book was supposed to be his
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autobiography if you will continue to invest in the questions coming from a royal road of the cases he had lost. so he is a method have person who wants to talk one wants to share that after i finished the "eyes on the prize" and came to work at the washington post i continue to send notes of to the supreme court of finally got a call one day asking me to come and he said he wanted to have tea. five of particular like teeth, then he does kind of hung up of, you have trouble reaching me and has to go through caspar gramm who was a publisher to reach me and it was a surprise the called the brown and why is you miley say yes half years of single in the key for me was all of a sudden to hear his voice and understanding he was such an exceptional person in the last century that arguably he is the
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great architect of his relations as a note and as we come into the 21st century and much more their first multiracial society continues to be a beacon of around the world where people believe there is racial and religious intolerance. so much of that remark in terms of how we anderson america of today be directly traced to his work. everything from the end of restrictive covenants that kept blacks and jews and hispanics that a certain neighborhoods to the right of all races to serve on juries and the chairman of blacks in the military. obviously equal education. that is all third commercials they work this mack will hear on a hook to be a distinguished authors be run with his sixth books and he's with us for the next three hours for as well as our phone lines or open, the members of the bottom of the screen. for those of you and in the
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pacific time zones few can also go to our twitter address or send an e-mail at booktv and c-span tickler. is the viggo fess tilda heigl fiercest is of 325 you develop flu if it cliff fess fattah thought that all fulfill few was to leave fifth left off by a jealous husband and more serious vein he would say that when president johnson gave him that the plan and it was a lifetime and he intended to serve it is and he felt at times resembles a further never had a supreme court appointment and when jimmy carter was coming in and they ended his term he rejoices in and send messages in thurgood marshall seventh suggestion of that maybe if you set down he would maf for another black person to take that shot of the commercial was in bad health and grumpy and not for faithfully content if it african-american fess thurgood marshall used
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profanity in response to the messenger in if president carter and said this is why john finlay lewis put hillary refer this not for you to judge tariff if you became fuente for some people would complain about his behavior was but he did not have an desire to leave that job. he sought as the capstone of his live. >> host: what did you think of clarence thomas? >> guest: most people would come up and ask this question must assume there was a great deal of antagonism between two and, in fact, and told by people who work with justice marshall during their controversial hearings. thomas and anita hill, justice marshall of one point began to pry and the reason was he felt people were not taking the future justice thomas seriously understanding what a young man he was and how long would be on the port and the impact here and have filled a press conference that he had of the time he
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announced his retirement from the court justice marshall had spoken about their not being a black seat on the court and nobody to replace him with a black person. this was less said in reference to justice thomas, it was a saving in general and i think of how justice marshall feld there was no one person to replace him. he had a strong sense of yvo unity was insecure and so when justice thomas's highly confirm justice thomas arranges to have been facing down a couple of capri with all of the members of the court to get to know you and they typically lasts 15 minutes or half an hour but he also a range to meet demand for his predecessor in the chamber in the upper level of the court to be has invited thomas takes his chambers and so he goes up to me with them instead of glass in 15
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minutes ls three hours of this conversation and, of course, on both sides it was a very good care rescission in which marshall and most of the welcoming and basically welcome some incentive to leave a lot of the press and political static that attended your confirmation hearings has had the floor because the american people have and they believe in their credibility so you've had to come here as a member of the pro-family fare understand million in this agreement with people these are people of your of living with and in congress and they become your brother and and as both a little bit about marshall's view of solarize and the black man's role in terms of accords and talk about his experience with along. i was quite a contrast because marshall growth and fairly middle-class family coming at a baltimore maryland and obviously justice thomas had grown up in poverty in georgia and so here
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were these two men talking for commercial in terms of support for affirmative action and changing the constitution is so that have been so offensive into a lot of oppression and slavery of by people would now allow them to rise up and gave some measure of equality and thomas became more intense of trying to understand how you can write the game that had been so long ring but decide you can't be re central and remove three's from the equation rather than be so race conscious as to engage in i guess what justice thomas would be as rigorous as commission. >> one other point this mack to read the chapter in civil war which you mentioned earlier was began with "eyes on the prize" and one to show excerpt of the stagnant three that coordinated with a book but had that come about? >> guest: a wonderful story, henry hampton who is the father of "eyes on the prize" because he is the man who give of with
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the idea to do the documentary and mrsa hindery is not gone but he's one of my mentors and was a friend and he is someone is shoveled to make this a reality. he had been working as a p.r.'s spokesman fifth and gone down to selma at that time when he was working for the unitarian with church when jim rating was killed on their white minister to explain why this white minister was involved and was overwhelmed by the kind of panoramic trauma of the movement and that this would fief of filmmakers, he came later and began making small commercials and advertisements for the military and the government's intent to the jury and you build up sufficient money so he can make his civil rights sedimentary fell after the tremendous success on abc. he has some interest there but they wanted to be like a song and dance and drama and never
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thinking about sammy davis playing first mccain and he said that some of them talking about, the real story and then went about to raise money for this project and think of the film project going and one of the sources of revenue that became apparent was potentially a book and that's when he came to me so this was early in the process and as of the time covering the reagan white house for the washington post and only someone should they get in terms of a newspaper story, i was using this sunday alec to read this letter pieces about what was going on with race relations and the reagan and henry had seen his pieces and vowed they have some interests of he invited me for you would talk about how i would tell the story of the american civil-rights movement. there were so many people he was bringing in producers and filmmakers and their work and schools where people were academics and students of the civil rights era and i felt at times out of step with them because they were so strongly
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partisan in the way they want to tell the story very and may ask how our tallest office of los just to look straight because this is an american woman full story full of natural heroes and villains from of to just tell the story straight and so island with thinking is ever more to hire me and he called and said the sec to one of a story and you can to a level of research and writing tests everyone to be evident in the film because of the time constraints but helpless tell the story so that's how the project assertive and it took some time off from the posts in these narrow "eyes on the prize". >> host: and french you've broached we may more than three errors to get this in. let me show you an excerpt of the documentary rich came out when? >> guest: the book was published in and leave early '88 and just before the documentary goes on pbs 1988 as well with this tricare is part of "eyes on
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the prize" one ♪ in 10 years' time in the 1950's and 60's america bought a second revolution. it was fought in the south by black people and white people. it was fought in the streets, in churches and stores and schools there in it was thought to make american beef america for all its citizens. these are america's civil-rights views. >> host: how do describe this young people in mission part of the year you were born 1954. >> guest: will also interesting if i went on a book tour fort "eyes on the prize"
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realizing how many people have lived through this era and this was in the late '80s and early '90s of today is overwhelming most americans said they a quarter of the population and 80 have no concept of what they know is martin luther king is a hero or to be viewed as a hero to be positive although he gets some young people often think he is a milquetoast image and they want a more militant like malcolm x that of stand up and be defiant black boys. and then you get people who don't understand. something like a color taking tough, it is presented them and get my kids you don't understand how reasons so many of these indignities and limits in terms of educational and anchor of opportunities were put on black people so in a way it's like having a conversation with people we feel they know all about race and they're so immersed in the racial conversation but in terms of the history of black and white
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oftentimes have no idea so it's like you're being used to them when you have a discussion of this and it's always been a challenge to me to tell the history and such u.s. to bring into light and usually i think it is best done through characters and getting them to understand what human beings are going through in that time. >> host: we will come sean in. columbia. >> caller: thir mr. williams, for decades we heard when it comes to public schools, hospitals and public housing and other projects in general that we constitute something like a martial plan for america or peace dividend that there just isn't the money for it. and that it would just grow the size of the national debt. we have also been hearing over the years as we have experienced the industrialization and the regulation and has free trade agreements that we've had to do so because of the scientific laws of free-market economics all of which have been totally contradicted by the purpose as
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well as contradicting the ideas of fiscal discipline. so what i'm getting and professor -- mr. williams is in scenes that dubois the bodies of black children and the bodies of poor white children are not too big to fail. i guess they're too small to matter and instead of being too interconnected that attitude is connected to matter. they don't have lobbyists on the hill so we see health care reformers and pieces on the floor so visible street parasites have taken over our government in my opinion the civil rights movement, the union movement, women's rights, none of that in even ghandi he would have gone nowhere if it hadn't been for the soviet union looming in the background and it seems to me until we reach a point in which poor people organized and willing to struggle against wall street capitalists we're going to continue to seek a rollback of the human rights and the gains
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of the civil rights movement and the laborer the union movement and those of the u.s., and plays his wife a few. >> guest: i don't think we are in any danger of seeing a rollback of the civil-rights movement committed has to transform america. we have other groups from everybody from american indians and latinos from a gay rights groups who come in children's rights groups who have emulated ferry legal strategy that thurgood marshall used to transform the loss of america and a love for equality and inclusion. i think what you're talking about is more an economic basis and increasing classification recede in the u.s. today and am reminded that their member for city cliff thurgood marshall fin save him if you were a young manager phil today going forward to your legal career what would you be doing a of putting your vigil and hinchey into fancy surprisingly enough said with he
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would represent children because children dosing to have any legal rights in this country and if you're a great team is now have the appearance of the events schools, if people are exploiting youth in terms of everything from gains to police you just have no state in the courts. he thought that children should have legal rights so when i hear shawn in vancouver talk about people exploiting the bodies of little black-and-white stills and the wall sure people getting away f. with improving the economy and some of the social policies feliz piven benefit i think back to marshall that part of this has to do with making sure that young people have rights in the legal standing in this matter are twitter address is booktv and c-span2 and robert is doing from tuscaloosa, i've been afternoon to both of you.
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with. >> caller: as i talk to you because of time i am i hearing anything for a hearing in his lips are not moving fast track there is a delay on cable but we can't your use of the head with your question for he will respond. >> caller: mr. williams, i have great respect for your analysis of the news and by the way you were born on one-year vanhollen authoring trying and the university of 1955 and then in tuscaloosa press room at the university and an notice you of oftentimes when it crashed hammer and. >> him. and he is a very intelligent person but it appears to me that sometimes you cater to both them and then if they are two of the most intolerant same george will that, on fess news analysis fifth for u.s. to that question and then have another statement.
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do you cater to those two people? >> guest: i think they're intelligent people and their my colleagues as fox news so i think fox news is more conservative certainly, that is in its best be why occupies, -- of having to react to them and to engage them and debate them and so when they have a good point added knowledge it but i think on their to bring of different points of view and to make sure that the discussion has some variety in my plan to be some reality because of a oftentimes they can go on to the right side of the political spectrum. with. >> caller: i call them intelligent -- i call them in time. i think in the first president bush, i don't think he intended to have another black man on the court. i think what he did he gave clarence thomas of the time because they thought maybe he was the going to get confirmed
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and he would get back and say now i need to get the right person and i thank you want to keep the port all white and set of the black man. that's my opinion because i don't think he thought that mr. thomas of the time was the most experienced black person to be on the words of venue can't even compare him in a letter informing with what i observed a of a thurgood marshall. >> guest: i-safe clarence thomas is eminently qualified to be on the supreme court's fess the os about somebody say is this person that that person but it's about politics and certainly appears thomas is a conservative and george herbert walker bush wanted a conservative presence on the court. i remember covering clarence thomas early on in justice thomas was a source for me when he was in the education to prevent famines later from the district of columbia court of
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appeals and i must tell you this interesting, people info fess reagan and bush in this race and oftentimes is viewed him as not sufficiently conservative. they wish to is more outspoken in their people, black people including in it the reagan and bush administrations who thought one thomas should be more of spoken in take on some of these issues which you look back and he transformed the equal employment opportunity commission and brought them into the 20th century in terms of computers in the light and got a lot of the backlog at of the way unsatisfied and change the framework in thinking much away from class action suits to individual claims of discrimination and i think he brings a conservative viewpoint to the port and half a tank that is when the spurs president bush very much wanted in i don't think this by the callers climate there is in the average to have an all white caller a loss of how is he would be defeated fed to the contrary
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there's tremendous support for him for during his confirmation hearings and the thought was the near to of his life story is a poor kid from georgia who had gone on to avoid costs and the yale and is something of himself was the inspirational story that would allow him to sail through the confirmation hearings. they had no anticipation and that any hill would pop up and read such a problem for clarence thomas. >> host: jackson, wyoming. >> caller: . >> host: and we will go to david in tulsa, oklahoma. >> caller: hi, mr. williams. personally to share with you i am a high-school it u.s. history teacher and a "eyes on the prize" has educated my students with the last couple of decades of concerning the modern civil rights movement here to thank you very much for that. >> guest: thank you for using it.
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i wrote this book because of selling in conjunction with pbs series and is battling when i hear you say that because i rodents taking time of my job as the washington post in the basement in boston and family around him on a shoestring because we didn't have much money and for you to tell me that it's still in use in people value of especially as a history teacher and to say thank you with call mike thank you and you're welcome. there's not a better tool for much less safe is i have tried it. my personal view is that during the modern civil rights with and sometimes we forget it was during the cold war and, how does the soviet union and propaganda as the modern civil rights movement and did it have any affect on the politicians in the u.s.? >> guest: yes, it did have a tremendous effect on the politics and what they've tried to propaganda as was that black
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people had no right back home and for all the claims for america as the beacon of democracy to the world and all of the claims of several words to that in it the u.s. as the rest of this rank oppression of black people known treatment of american citizens and that the u.s. was engaged in high hypocrisy in if you think fact to some of the atmospheric taking place in this country in said the civil rights movement and it was about the communist influence on movement and then at the counter efforts by the likes of people like walter wright who was head of the naacp for a while to say we had nothing to do the communists and, of course, you get people like to voice of who is challenging with white in leaning more toward socialism and the kind of support for socialism that was coming from the lars of a union. a think tank do so much with of
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the arguments over the great actor will unblocking and, of blocking out his name, that it was very much thinking that possibly the soviet union had a different model in mind for a children's and equality of all races give it a lot was happening in the unit is states so of course matthew v. holmes senhorita of that soviet model and things that might be the way up and, of course, that leads him to be blackballed and so many issues that sent him and i can think also of a case of some members of the naacp and begin to espouse a communist doctrine in tatters and that leaves of tourists to then especially in this half white segregationist politicians claim is nothing but a communist movement for causing trouble but these are people who
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are coming soon are threatening the very ideals of the u.s. also that was one way to try to diminish if not dismiss the power of the civil rights movement in the midst of the cold war and he mentioned that the march on washington. from august 20th and the organizers thought maybe a few of which show up. two of the 50,000 people showed up on that august day feared wi-fi fess draft a it was so have we organize and was interesting and of this is this is ran also limit the of course, we remember in terms of another failure in the i have it in a speech on the steps of the lincoln memorial but what is really compelling is if you look at the front line of a great lunch on washington there you have read all the and people from dr. hinn from the southern christian leadership conference and people from the naacp and you have such a range of
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representation, people from the labor unions in people from religious groups not only in the mainstream religious groups for itself that are small and the estates and everybody representing their fifth and this has somehow become known as the moment to show up and the government was even scared that they shut down washington for that day the position national guard troops outside the city of and there was fear that there was some kind of writing and thinking it was calling to be a travesty, the people have a sense this was the moment and there was going to be the sole rights and it was time to speak to the government in time to speak in such a way that the government could hear the people of good will and conscience thought it was time to make progress on the civil-rights issue fess mad four with president kennedy is the. >> guest: is at the white house and the some thought should you participate in the
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van where fear that this was going to become a violent episode he was held away from it and did not participate in it is only after words once it was clear that it was a tremendous success and he then invited to the leaders of the merged to come to the white house were lemonade. >> host: our conversation is with juan williams coming james from monsanto's. >> caller: thank you, i've seen you go out and my friend has written it the most historical officials of the offensive intended for edifice into iraq. >> guest: i know at with no christo and with inducing to me is these are various aspects of my life and so in one level claimed during his three and one journalism for fox news and npr and it's mostly debate and so in shape hell i have seen it in the world is so interesting and
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times people will see me as a liberal or conservative but it's so hard and so many of especially in this niche media we have today to be seen as simply trying to give people information because you so often get involved in these highly politicized debate but i think it makes for good tv. >> host: are twitter address coming you can send us an e-mail or give us a call. our guests on this sunday in debt is juan williams. allen to talk about bill cosby. in these are his words: i'm talking about these people who cry when their son is standing there in an orange suit. where were they when he was two? where when he was 12? where you when he was 18 and how come you don't know that he had a pistol and where is his father and why didn't you know where he is and why doesn't the father show up and talk to the boy? >> guest: powerful stuff. and it is planned of what i think is the evidence of an
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ongoing civil rights struggle in this country that you have bill cosby, a man of such high esteem not only in the black community but america and the nation from such tremendous success who's willing to stand up and challenge the powers that be in the black comedy about the way things are going to point out when you look at the crime rate and a look at the celebration of gangster culture and the black community that somebody needs to stand up and speak out aggressively about what is becoming this function in the black community so this book enough is more of a plumbing and a history book but it is framed around bill cosby taking a heroic stand in and saying what a lot of people don't want to be said bellotto want to hear which is that if you are dealing with kids who aren't getting educated and shopping at a school where than 50% dealing with people being incarcerated, more than
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40 percent of the prison population despite being 13 or 40 percent of the population and a one-year deal with some people born at of wedlock especially in the black community he is saying how could we not be this as a crisis, how can we not all be talking about it and what are some people claim it's a matter of airing dirty laundry when, in fact, you have a situation for you heard him describe burke kids are suffering and yet somehow in the black community they want to fill the leadership is heavily invested in reparations or three strikes and you're out for some act of what they would feel as if public racism or the please did something is as opposed to things that can be controlled the arguments inside and that committee for and think that is why when bill cosby's both got it became so controversial because people knew what he was saying was true in in is a list
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as difficult for some people to hear. >> host: in the but to say that he does so without dressing up is statistical data vivify fess my view is not trying to present as a sociologist or political voice coming from intel stories from his a freight carrier if they can agree storyteller whose medical and other reviews that own life a covenant with black america and best-selling anthology was fun for proposals were committed to empowerment. another concludes with a flurry of alliances condensation preaching that >> guest: i think it is coming sense but a lot of people thought this was a radical for proposal and i am thinking if you gonna speaking to people into rooms of suggesting they have control of the lives in the
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circumstances and if you're the same people get enough 25% live in poverty during the fourth concrete steps for that you can take full year cellphones 500 to and get out of poverty. fear of a sense that our not arguable and not a matter of debate and if you look for these numbers finishing high school and if you do this heavily on to a job and family of that job and if you take the set of not marry until have graduate from school and not having children until you run their official most machines to you live in poverty and the u.s. without regard to your race and yet you don't do this message delivered by civil rights leaders in terms of the argument becomes are you one of those people who is all about personal responsibility races making claims against the larger system and charges that is historically racist and bias and all sorts of conspiracy
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theorists' but i think that in some point and i think this is with co -- with bill cosby you have to respect individual especially the minority and say here is how you can help yourself and that is of the prescriptions are at the back of "enough", the things to guarantee your success in this country. >> host: i know it is -- what percentage of african-american boys and men and of the age of 35 are incarcerated? >> guest: is very high, more than 20% end of is troubling when given a 30 and goes up and service to go down of, of course, there's lots of recidivism but part of this issue is why you have so many young black men in prison today in the expense into the culture, the celebration iran music in it the whole notion of criminality and young people saying it is just a rite of passage for a young black man to go to jail. the way people dress and think
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they just like they got out of jail, they don't have a bill to hold of their pants, and this becomes a them part of it the hip-hop culture and the assumptions and the whole notion of family life and then, of course, that the male is absent and the breakdown of family life. these other stories of this time fan is difficult because it is hard sorry to hear and yet people like bill cosby who are brave enough to speak out i think are the leading edge of what has to be done at this time especially for poor black people. >> host: is this the next level of the civil rights movement? fess i guess obviously if you're going to have invented some research and little more than a year ago with research center for oppressed people are reviewing polls about why people soft and reaction to what was of the time the obama campaign and the most astounding discovery was if you have poor black
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people was going on inside they said there is no longer 15 american mother a poor black people who on the financing as a result of yours ever opening education in business and a life verses' upper income like americans, who have benefited and moved on and see them as a separate race. is too wide eyes they are all black people but not to poor black people, they see themselves as caught in specific circumstance and a cycle of poverty that reduce generation to generation and involves a high levels of frustration and involves the kind of drugs to acceptance of judge behavior in the family breakdown and that is the question of how to pull this together. you often see a lot of guilt on the part of people say i have never got where i came from and of reaching back but for poor black people they realize a lot of this is simple rhetoric and
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they want to see action and having a need action this very specific in terms of trying to extricate them from the problem from a high rate in disenfranchisement that persists in this society with a four but especially for poor minorities fess mad our guest is juan williams, national public radio, fox news and the author of six books on race in america. daniel is on the phone from new jersey. if the morning. >> caller: finland. in mr. williams, thank you to c-span for the south avenue. i have read your commentary and books in and wanted to compliment you on "eyes on the prize" because that is a bug that i have and learn a great deal. i am a professor and head of from sri lanka myself and we
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have a racist prices fare. when, and is the conversation you're having about the justice system. and in the process of writing a book boy to be entitled to the last plantation, the criminal-justice system and the blacks in the u.s. because about 60 percent of all the people who are incarcerated in the u.s. happen to be minorities and 40 percent are white and in my study is in contemporary society it becomes very clear that of the drug was far as the heart of a criminal-justice system where all these young black men that are incarcerated so that becomes the swordplay in my book by the emancipation n the insurance
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service declared in 1964 but i don't want to get involved with that because that's what i'm working on. >> host: did you have a question for juan williams grants. >> caller: the question i did want to ask . >> host: the bears haven't. >> guest: with them all drinking derrin beers. i think what happened there was a the president really had a slip up at that press conference and got involved in a situation very aggressively which was a surprise for me because typically he does not speak about race and as the one to be seen as a by president and if the release of the president of the u.s. and of all americans and suddenly here he was in a situation where he said and i think this was fair and most americans wouldn't come he
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wanted to be supportive of his friend but when he asserted characterizing starting coming as acting stupidly at that point it was over the line because he did not of a fax of the case and then as the facts emerge president obama had gone on about racial profiling and his efforts in illinois to do with racial profiling and as the tracks in version there was no racial profiling, a neighbor had called because she saw accurately the there were two men tried to break into a house. turns out it was professor gates and his driver the when the police come there simply coming to response to a break in call in their in their rights to 25 of this person is and legitimately in the house and may be hiding in the house in someone hiding in a closet for ending the inning please add to your honor to share your cousin for life. they don't know. so when they are asking for a vacation from professor gates and asking who else is in the
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house professor gates has a really on toward response which is due know i am, you're treating me this way because of a black person and then it becomes confrontational but for the white house and the president you can have a i think most people would say with the police could have been more patient and i think they might have said he's upset and he just got back from china and he just couldn't even get in his own house leave him alone, is not for the of arresting him because he's in his own house. once i had a status the situation was under control with the other way to look at it is he was challenging their authority and they felt that he was out of control in terms of the abuse of language and a light and that they wanted to reassert their authority in that situation for there was no racial profiling. with the president introduced say this is an example of how black people are subjected to racial profiling so to deal with
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that problem given had to have the beer summons and i think it worked with the president to try to extricate himself from this mess because it is a conversation he does invade, is a drag on his approval ratings and the polls that were done during that time showed his numbers were going down especially with white americans to the health of the present may have spoken at of term and somehow become of trying to show off some specific loyalty work playing racial politics. just not helpful for the president in a time when he's trying to do so much of his domestic policy event and it relies on a ninth american people like him and trust in. >> host: a lot of opinion on the cable channels including fox or you work in a got a lot of attention, glenn echoing president obama a racist. >> guest: i am stunned. i don't understand it. a think in that situation people are saying things to stir the
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pot for to the reading audience visit there is no reality to that. good, first of all, his mother is white and his father is black and obviously he was raised by grandparents and gone to schools and never majority white from the time he was in preschool. want and never heard that from anybody even when he was in the pews of rev. right and he was spewing racial invective is making an outrageous statements barack obama never became a way of telling you think that he is bells were believed were held to his heart some racist attitude so i think a lot of that in his simple grandstanding and making averages statements and private tour glen at his best. but i don't think there's any
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reality to it. as a big difference between a personality show and news and that's a personality driven. >> host: are you with us now? and you have the volume on the television so we'll put you on hold. turn the volume down and so we don't hear the echo. we will go to el read in the santa barbara. >> caller: mr. williams, it's a pleasure to get through to you. of a child of the fifties like yourself of, and fascinated with your career and i watch you every other night on fox news but of the to tell you this is a call for a vet to tell you and listening to use free today and you're the voice of reason, you're almost touching every point that i want to make both pro and con in regard to bill cosby to an audience that is
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very receptive to what he is saying not only us but also them and a lot of things that they're being set up their need to be heard by everyone. let me say this, a couple of things, we are talking about the question how many young black people are involved in the penal system but i think it is about asserting to the probation and that is from a press and incarcerated for a probation and parole and we are, they've got to take a stand and do the right thing and go to school with marriage and children and the proper thing but then as the end of this far session talking about professor days conversation and listed the look of this really closely. with a professor davis, one of us who has done proper in see how he is arrested and wasn't
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from i know how he talks. see how he is arrested and put in the system almost and this is some of the steps we're talking about when we say a lot of these young black men are incarcerated in a ball on a tangent, i do want to talk about all that. and a soon the cheney is going to ruin and the republican party if they get a chance and all have to do is keep on talking with go ahead and consider when we talk about this and want to take black underclass at building fess representative of all of them. i thank you look at it and our racial parade and there are many people who were exposed the had been seen before and never discussed. >> guest: what caught my year in the call was the notion that certain things that people don't need to hear in some people
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don't need to hear and i think what he's talking about problems inside the black community as it would give ammunition to people he describes as the far right wing with it is rush limbaugh or sean and unity and the lights and people that apparently he feels has an antipathy toward the black community. don't have a sincere passion for helping uplift that community is so he says we don't need to have those people to give them ammunition. i think bill cosby said it's not a matter of airing dirty laundry. it's not as if there are people who don't know about the high dropout rates you don't know about the achievement gap between black and white children who don't know about the high incarceration rates and the celebration of the drug culture and as think it is so difficult to have the conversation. it is so painful for some to hear and then there are those who as the caller points out
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will legitimately use it to to distorted and in some cases use it to say we don't need social interventions to try to help those who have been left behind and often left behind because of historical and justice in society. said that if these people and thinking to positions that are highly polarized and not going to admit on my side because you can use it and i don't thank you and it on your side because you don't want to have this conversation. i think when it comes to race you've got to speak honestly and to expect other people to speak honestly with you if you honestly think that we could in this country come to some profitable, some productive resolution and i happen to be an optimist because having written the biography of justice marshall, "eyes on the prize" and having written other books about everything from the history of black religion in the country, i think it's an incredible american story of
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possibility that you can deal with what seems in the fifties who would have dreamed that we cuban that we are today? i wouldn't even be in front of this camera and my father couldn't believe he would be author of six books and can national public radio or fox news. is not possible for my father said it would seem like incredible. and i think that sense of possibility exists if we are honest with each other about what makes it over the racial divide in the country and having part of that has to do with in dealing with honesty and problems and when it comes to education or when it comes to criminal behavior. speaking honestly so we can make the demand on others. >> host: two our audience listening on c-span radial are in death guest is juan williams, among his other books "this far by faith" in his biography of thurgood marshall, also "enough" and we will take your phone calls and e-mail. bush is on the line in jackson,
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of wyoming. >> caller: yes i am on the loan. i come from jackson, wyoming and wyoming is a woodrow area of the state, but most of this thing is very prejudiced state. and this situation of blacks in schools. they need glasses and self-esteem and a new class is in teaching children about what it is like to be a parent and how much it takes away from their life and responsibility raising a child. they knew this education in schools. the conservatives keep saying you can't bring yourself up by your bootstraps but you have no boots and you can do that and then it is a concrete jungle in the cities. you go across the river or in the suburbs where the hassling pools and tennis courts and
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their schools. you go into the black neighborhood and there are basketball courts erected and broken. there internet services and goods, other teachers are horrible, and so you wonder why they don't stay in school and then the having gained around them. >> host: stay on the line because i want to read something, you're a perfect segue to what bill cosby said in his speech and no one to get your comments and also juan williams and you know the speech by well. it was delivered when by the way? >> guest: on the 50th anniversary of the brown decision in washington at constitution hall. it was sponsored by the naacp. .. by five, six different men under what excuse -- i want somebody to love me and as soon as you have it you forget to parent.
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grandmother, mothering great grabbed mother raising the children and the child knows nothing about love or respect or any of the three. you also say spending $500 on sneakers for what? they won't spend $250 for hooked on phonics. butch. >> caller: well, i mean, the men who had five women they did that so they could cut welfare money. the men then go to the women that they impregnated --. >> host: but is it about >> host: is about welfare or something else? >> caller: it was started back in the days of the welfare situation. i know what it is like. i used to do heroin myself. i hung out in the black neighborhoods. the babies would go to their houses and get the welfare check. this is why men weren't around women all the time.
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the women -- the women couldn't be parents, they became drug addicts themselves. they had no training in child care whatsoever. that is one of the big problems. i am disappointed in you with your nonsense on gates, those are unconstitutional acts, you don't let somebody in the house the polygamous. you are giving in 42 law-enforcement, the conservatives are backing priest lovers, not the constitution. >> host: year earlier point about bill cosby's speech and then professor gates. >> guest: i don't take his experience in new york as emblematic of all the was taking place around the country in terms of black society. he makes an important point about welfare and the welfare rules. oftentimes not encouraging and presence of a man in the home,
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that led in terms of the underclass system, negative ramifications because they knew had people engaged in single-parent household, lack of attention to the child, because something that was repeating, parents or children who didn't have parents, having children themselves, not having any role models, how intense parenting is and how much effort is required, young women thinking it doesn't matter if the man is not stating, i just want a baby, there have been sociological studies indicating lots of young women, not only black young women the women of all races since you don't need a man, somehow to raise a child. they are absolutely wrong. a mother and a father are essential for a child, not to say that every child is going to be damaged by the absence of the dad or the absence of a mother but if you look at it in general
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the answer is yes, it is good to have a mother and a father and it benefits the child greatly and those are the children who do best in school, have leased contact with the criminal justice system, have the greatest likelihood to graduate from college. you could go on and on. this is the root of a difficult problem in terms of family breakdown in black america. >> host: the phony leaders, dead end movement, the cultural failure undermining black america and two individuals in particular, jesse jackson, use a, quote, when offered a chance to hold a real political post with power to put into action new policies for helping black people, the poor and the oppressed, jackson said no. he turned away from political races that he had a chance to win by refusing to run for mayor of chicago, the hometown of his group, plus, or to run for the senate in his native state. he was not involved in passing any of the new laws to improve
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schools, reduce health problems in the black community or any other key issue facing black america. >> guest: highlight of his career now is the two campaigns he ran for president in '84, and 88. what came of these campaigns? the best argument could be that may -- he was there to say to president reagan, if your vote is stuck at the bottom and has a hole in it, so much of war, black america, his campaigns became an extension of the civil-rights, almost crusades, to say to people we are capable of running for president, but in terms of creating real change in the system that was a benefit to people of color and a benefit to those most vulnerable in our society, it is questionable. even after the second campaign, inspiring other people to run, arguably could make the case
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that he helped change the selection process, it wasn't winner-take-all, that benefited barack obama years later. but in terms of really dealing with it the on the ground issues in the face of the black community, dealing with things like people, the high level of criminal activity or the problems in the schools, the crack houses, all that, you have to say why is it with jesse jackson or the naacp, you don't see them in the streets calling attention to these problems that way so heavily on our community, preferring to be in protest mode and pointing fingers at the white community, absolutely necessary that someone speak up, there be a voice for people treated wrongly, but when you get to the point that black people are 14% of the american population, when you get critical mass of educated black
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people, middle class black people, we are in position to help ourselves and do more for ourselves, yet it seems they are caught in the past and not intending to real issues where their hands on issues, their tremendous stature could be the real trigger, could be the catalyst for social change inside the black community that would give greater leverage to make demands on the white community for helping create positive social change. >> you wrote about al sharpton. we will hear from ronald on the phone from kansas. >> caller: hello, mr. williams. i am from roundsville, brooklyn, and a child of the 50s. i was boss -- bust out, 43 months i did not go to school because of the racial problems. i work at the freedom center,
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retired federal judge, as talking to him about that, he said that case is still active in the courts. that period of american history really has not disappeared. it is still a part of us. what is your view on that. the last question, how do you think thurgood marshall would you barack obama as president? did he envision that happening? thank you for taking my call. >> guest: and the second question, he didn't envision it. it would have been a stunner. he would have been thrilled. just as he was getting -- he was supposed to do the swearing in for vice-president gore. that was shortly before he died. i think for him it would have been greatly satisfying and he would be somewhat distressed by the conservative majority that is now on the court.
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but encouraged by the idea that barack obama as president, first nominee is a hispanic woman, bringing different voices and different experiences to the court. in response to the first part of your question about the arguments over what took place in the north, you think about great struggles in boston, do with desegregation of the schools, those arguments go on in terms of affirmative action, but you can see it on a very real level in terms of continued reality of what i think of as the doughnut, here in washington, really troubled public school system dominated by minority kids, in the district of columbia, you have more than 90% black hispanic kids in public schools that you get to the suburbs outside of new york, into connecticut, new jersey, suddenly it is a much
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more diverse population, heavily white and the level of academic achievement, much higher, clearly demonstrably different, and those kids, especially the kids at the upper level of those schools, are going on to the ivy league's and better schools and being trained to occupy positions of leadership, critical thinking skills, all the rest, as if we are engaged in what the south africans might -- nelson mandela said a ban to a good -- indication, giving people in certain areas just enough to education to be the service people, but you don't ever give them the opportunity to rise up and get their foot on the bottom rung of the ladder of upward mobility so they can become part of the leader should class in american society. that is the struggle now, to try to correct these because of the minority population of the united states, squirrels are not more than 1 third of the minority population and
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increasing rapidly. are we ready to surrender our status in terms of economic advantage, intellectual advantage in an innovation economy as president obama calls it, because we are not properly educating so many people? is a critical stage, you need educated, capable workers. a lot of what was tolerated before in the guise of racism or thinking everyone has to look out for their own kids, now becomes a national social priority. that is why i think education, if you want to put a title on it, what is the civil-rights agenda for this generation, i would put education at the very top making sure that every child has the opportunity to learn and to achieve academically in society. our kids taking school seriously? >> host: where did you go to
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school? >> guest: i grew up in brooklyn, new york, i would have gone off to erasmus hall or somewhere else because i did well on sentence exams, special academic high school in new york city but i got a scholarship to go to a prep school in upstate new york called oakwood, a quaker school, did very well, it was such a nurturing place, i really broke out, the editor of the school paper, you can imagine given my career, i was president of the student body, i won basketball championships, cross-country winner. >> host: did you play basketball? >> guest: i was captain of the basketball team. i went off to another quaker institution outside philadelphia. my son goes there now. i had a great time studying
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philosophy, graduated with a b.a. in 1976. >> host: where were you born and why? >> guest: i was born in panama. my mother brought three kids to brooklyn when i was 3, almost 4-year-old. i was born -- as to why, because my father, both grandfathers were in the caribbean and went to work on the panama canal. bose died building the panama canal. my grandfather on my father's side was born in jamaica. on my mother's side, my mother's father went to panama to open a restaurant. the bold area, silver was for blacks or minorities. a silver restaurant for workers on the canal were coming in.
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my mother was born in panama and by fog was born in jamaica. >> host: we are enjoying the conversation with juan williams. i want to take a step away from the political thoughts for a minute and hear more about juan williams's personal likes and dislikes, favorite baseball team, how he spends his free time. >> guest: s that my free time exercising, i used to be quite a runner in high school and continued to run, but lately i am told i should stick with the elliptical and treadmill. then, i watch pro sports. this time of year, summer, fall, i am watching the washington nationals or baltimore orioles.
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we just got the washington nationals in washington. my local paper, the washington post, covers the nationals more intensely than the orioles. i follow the nationals, it is the reminder to me, i wrote a little piece about growing up in new york in 1969. i thought to myself with men landing on the moon, that should have been the whole story. i was fixated on the new york mets. that is the team by grew up waiting for. that for me was my memory of 1969. and things like the panthers, growing a in portland, all the things that were going on in the background. a route for the nationals and orioles and in the winter i am a huge washington was did fan. used to be the washington bullets. like a little boy's club. tim russert not to -- easton said not far from me. will blitz and not be fine me.
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david gregory, a lot of people in the media and in politics are pro nba fans. the benefit is that because their tickets on specific dates, my wife says to me we are not wasting this ticket so either you are going or i am taking somebody else and i think the really should stop working here. i go to the game. it is kind of an enforced day. >> host: espn on c-span continues. we are talking to one williams. >> caller: thanks for taking my call. i will not watch fox news sunday if it wasn't for you. >> guest: i hope you're rooting for me. >> caller: you bring a lot of levelheaded mr. that program that would not be there if you were not there. and drugs, education, housing, jobs, crime, you have to attack
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the mall the same time. you can just start with one and attack, let one time. how we talk about race in america? weekend talk about it because if we do, we have to pull back the covers and expose all of the people who have done whatever they have done to get us to the point we are in now. iran/contra. a lot of people think the reagan administration brought drugs into that program. we have to talk about all of that. then you have to say america has come a long way. look at all the whites who voted for obama to get him in office. there's a small segment of the republicans still controlled by emotions and years. at some point we are going to move beyond that, i hope we do.
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>> guest: i hope we too. a lot of the 4 have irrational fear. i have -- it is strange to me, this focus on barack obama's birth certificate, the identity politics that place to reckless sentiments that want to somehow view him as anything but an astoundingly successful politician, capable individual, who has thrilled and nation with his election, with his campaign which was expertly run. we will see how does as president. he should be judged as president, for better or worse, success or failure. the nitpicking about his birth certificate and other things, to me, the claim that he is a racist, a lot of that is just wackiness, it is dangerous in a society where people can become how violent in terms of their extremism. >> host: a was fifth question,
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you talk about soldier truth, john brown and. tubman and frederick douglass. what if we did not have slavery in this country, what would have been different? >> guest: if you think about christmas addicts at the point of the revolution participating fully, expecting his going to be treated as a citizen, you're talking about the idea of black talent, the black experience in this country, being one of the immigrant as opposed to slavery. the immigrant experience even inside the black community, when he think about black africans who have come here of their own volition or people from the west indies for latin america, they come to a land of opportunity and they view america from that
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experience differently than native-born black americans in terms of the population who are much more involved in the struggle against racism and feel as if they are weighed down by that history. when you ask me to imagine that there was no slavery, at that point one i am seeing is that you have a tremendous reservoir of talent that could have added to the american experience at a much earlier juncture. the notion of divide is going to be present. human beings tend to be tribal and different. i can see that. the notion of american law and amendments, the notion of civil war, the whole notion of the terrible lies that had to be told in the american mind to deal with the fact of legal discrimination, so much of that is gone. then you are opening up
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opportunities and boris in the american experience that i think would have made it a much more -- much richer. we would have been able to invest all the energy we had to invest in dealing with race and other issues. >> guest: >> host: good morning, rachel. >> caller: a question and a comment. why isn't fox news and c-span and the other news stations talking about larry franklin. that was a front-page in the washington times this past weekend nobody has mentioned it. hand you cut off -- the control room, of a prior caller that mentioned neoconservatism. if you read the transparent cobol he describes neoconservatism as a jewish movement. it was billy crystal, ari fleischer and others who took us
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into the war with iraq and obama is following their footsteps too. our media is controlled by zionists who control the immediate and our congress. i am getting tired of it. the best place to get the news is press tv, go to and get the real news of what is going on in the middle east and they will show you coverage, what is going on in gaza, they showed a home where people are held hostage, some newscaster was trying to get in to interview the family, they had these israeli guards armed, holding them hostage in their own home that would let them in. it is really awful. they would never show this stuff here. >> host: thank you for the call. i want to go back, unless you want to comment, let me go back, we talked about jesse jackson, reverend al sharpton, very critical of him, in its recently
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as 2005, al sharpton took money in exchange for appearing in ads designed to lure black people in the financial webb, the company agreed to put the title as collateral, this exploitation is why about half of the states banned such loans. >> guest: absolutely, hard to believe anyone would engage in that behavior and columns of the civil-rights leader but he has allowed themselves to be hired by a corporation that is angry at another one and he stages demonstrations, a total abuse of the legacy of the civil-rights movement and the power of people to march and express discontent, he is marching for one company for money, representing one company against another, a corporate fight, paying homeless people who don't care about the issue, just following his lead.
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is so cynical and so destructive, the power of the legacy of civil rights were in -- individuals make a difference in our society, not just putting dollars in their own pockets because they are exploiting the memory of dr. king. i. c. sharpton as trying to be the next jesse jackson. jesse jackson is trying to promote himself as a civil-rights leader. so many of these guys are lost as anachronistic figure is but the white press continues to run to the many time there is a racial incident in america, jackson, sharpton, they get a microphone in an instant and are supposed to speak for all black people. it is not a good situation. it doesn't lead to social change. doesn't lead to people taking daring stands, putting themselves at risk in order to advance the race. >> host: those comments give you
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he? >> guest: al sharpton set time the black and colder, don't pay any attention to him. jackson's that you don't understand, you are not old enough or wise enough. i should have spent more time talking to him. bill cosby has spent time and energy to help every civil-rights in north america, he was cast out as a result of making such statements, you can imagine the umbrage they take when i try to speak honestly about race and the needs for addressing issues by the black community. >> host: i will find a way or make one, what is the message? >> that is about the power of historical black college class and their history and the united states. think about the high percentage of doctors and lawyers,
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engineers, 80% of the black engineers in the country coming out of black colleges and universities, think about people from do boys -- dubois, oprah winfrey, in this era, why do we need a historical black college? yet those schools still graduate more of the black kids in the country to go to college than the majority of white schools. most of the black kids go to the majority of white schools, it is still the case that most of the black kids who graduate graduating from historical black colleges and universities, serving as a reservoir, support for kids who are still trying to make something of themselves and might not qualify to go to the state university. but they serve a very important role, and historically, if you think back to thurgood marshall as a young man at lincoln
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university, where he runs into langston hughes, african princes at one time, it was a place on an international level, the next level of black leaders. >> host: behavior that struck me, asking why we have a congressional black caucus, what if we had a congressional white caucus. the want to respond to that? >> guest: that caller must think black and white people and on these shores and have since treated as equals ever since and there's no white majority and the white majority -- go back to the 20th-century, being 90% of the population or so, we never had that kind of difference, we never had this sense of white entitlement and privilege under law as we have had in this country, so why is it that there is even an issue of franchise, that black people were denied
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the vote, the struggle to get black people into elected office in the country, get them to be properly represented at every level of political life. than you would ask why is there a black caucus this you knew that history, as you get more black people coming in to the congress, within to represent black constituents, no matter what district, occasionally you have a black elected official representing a mostly white car makes district, they want to have a sense for african-americans, that is why there is a congressional black caucus. is not an anachronism today and it is not an oddity. it was created because there was a need, given the historical disenfranchisement, make sure the political system was reflecting the vitality and the views and needs of black
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america. >> host: we will show you the book covers. go-ahead, kathleen. >> caller: i enjoy everything you have red -- i have read that you never knew. i enjoy your perspective. i also want to say, the way you go up against warmongering billy crystal is so needed. it is not new for him, on health care, i couldn't disagree with you more in regard to jesse jackson. i live in athens, a university community. he has come over and over again, i sat and had access to him. i feel like he embraces the issue of poverty regardless of race, focus on economics, talks about lack of access, lack of health care, lack of living wages. so he draws parallels with so
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important, between these communities and other folks who are in poverty and have lack of access. the other thing i want to bring up, i and the privilege of going to the eric holder nomination hearings. i heard eric holder is saying no one is above the law so many times i couldn't count, then i heard nancy pelosi -- lighthouse -- whitehouse and feinstein, i didn't hear any of the republicans say that, that no one is above the law. what is the message to all of us, african-americans, and for those -- of 57-year-old white woman, what is the message to all of us, we watch people in the bush administration or any administration who commit very serious crimes, lying about weapons of mass destruction, undermining our department of
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justice, when we watch our leaders not hold these countable -- these people accountable and watch some guy go to prison for five years for holding up the local grocery store or whatever it is, when we watch our leaders not hold crime accountable, what is the message to the rest of us? the message is very serious, that they are above the law. >> guest: none of us should be above the law. the reason you were not hearing that response from the republicans on the district committee they were holding hearings, the fear that there would be some effort to go back and have inquiries, investigation into what took place during the bush administration with regard to treatment of detainees, torture and the like. we have since discovered lots of
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issues and questions. the attorney general has been confirmed, he is considering having a special prosecutor to do just the kind of thing you are talking about. president obama has sent a message that he wants to focus on moving forward. doesn't want to get the country lost in recriminations over what people did at a time when the country was feeling very threatened. i don't think there's any argument with what you said. the answer is evident in your question. we are america, if we hold to these ideals that the law applies to us all, no one can be above the law. if you look at people like richard nixon, no one, including the president of the united states, is above the law. >> host: can you please tell me about john f. kennedy's relationship with martin luther king during the civil-rights struggle, saying someone once told me there's a reason why there is no photograph of the
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two of them together. >> guest: kennedy was standoffish, didn't understand much of the civil-rights movement. he was a senator from massachusetts. he didn't understand the need for the kind of confrontation that dr. king would precipitate in order to facilitate social change, to force the government to react in terms of defending the rights of its black citizens. early on, there is a wonderful story, during the midst of the 1960 campaign between kennedy and nixon, dr. king is put in jail in georgia, they moved him from one jail to another and is a great deal of worry because people don't know where he is, that he may be being tortured or beaten up in jail.
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you get an effort by people to get president, then candidate, kennedy, to reach out for the governor. and harris wofford and became a senator from pennsylvania was an assistant to president kennedy, and he wants kennedy to make that call to the governor, that called its publicized in the midst of a campaign in terms of the black church saying here is a candidate who cares. is one of the key points that helps the community to shift for kennedy. nixon had a pretty good reputation in the black community, and might have gone the majority of the black vote, but that moment was critical for kennedy's success. you get kennedy being in a position where the civil-rights leadership, people like dr. king expected he was going to be real advocate in terms of civil-rights, especially with regard to housing. kennedy is very slow to act, not
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wanting to enter democrats. at that point in our history, the south was mostly democratic and he didn't want to take them on, and was reluctant to support much of the civil-rights activism for that reason, seeing it as creating a fischer inside the democratic party that would not help him, would not help his reelection, viewed it as a lot of trouble, problems, bobby kennedy saw the light and begins to push his brother to really get on the civil-rights bandwagon but kennedy, by his own admission, just didn't understand. it wasn't close to his heart. >> host: we will take one more call. good morning. >> caller: good morning. i would like to thank book tv and c-span for another great program. and ron williams, i would like to thank you.
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i have a traveling black history museum that teaches african-american history and race relations throughout the state. i used to form a more perfect union, those stamps, the u.s. postal service commission for the civil-rights movement and i also use eye on the prize. i would like to thank you again for that work, and my question to you is thurgood marshall's relationship with dr. king and malcolm x, would you talk about that briefly? i hold you up with max robinson and bradley for your commentary and thank you so much. >> guest: thanks for saying of that. this is interesting stuff. if you look back at dr. king's relationship with thurgood marshall. there is a kind of sense that thurgood marshall may be looking
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down on dr. king. thurgood marshall has already achieved brown vs. board of education, been on the cover of time magazine, before dr. king he emerges as a young minister, a 25-year-old in montgomery, alabama, involved in the bus boycott, rosa parks, and the like. and thurgood marshall has asked to help this young minister in alabama and is going on his honeymoon and ask one of his aides to get involved and when he comes back is all over the papers, big headlines that martin luther king has become a national celebrity. stock-picking goes on to be the kind of person who is raising money, starting the southern christian leaders to conference because the naacp is such a lightning rod and so controversial in much of the south and deemed a communist influence organization. so he wants the southern christian leadership group, a
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local group that people can attack because of its christian roots and the like. thurgood marshall, this guy's a great speaker and an interesting character but we are doing serious work at the naacp. and later, when there are charges of sexual escapades by dr. king and the like, at one point, thurgood marshall had a source trying to warn king that he was being monitored and his rooms were being bugged, dr. king says the him it doesn't bother me, doesn't matter, thurgood marshall, how can you say that, these guys are out to embarrass you, to delegitimize your efforts in terms of civil rights, to understand what is going on, even the great march on washington, thurgood marshall is not there. he thinks it is counterproductive, alienating so many in congress and creating all this fear that there's going to be violence and riots and will have a negative impact in terms of getting critical legislation through congress,
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just more racially divisive. that was his relationship there. with malcolm x they are both in harlem. you have two men who have such a large historical footprint, they're both in the same neighborhood, harlem, new york, for much of their lives and they can't stand each other. there are points at which malcolm x is putting down thurgood marshall as the kind of mainstream traditionalist black leader, the token leader, half white and all this stuff, later on he >>reporter: out -- reaches out to thurgood marshall but he is so alien, so angry he doesn't want anything to do -- he sends a letter inviting thurgood marshall to be a featured guest, marshall doesn't even respond, so it becomes an angry
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situation. it is interesting. i remember when i was interviewing thurgood marshall, i interviewed him over a course of several months. at one point we were talking about malcolm x and affected his autobiography, the alex haley book, standard reading in american schools, malcolm x is such a celebrated figure, a thurgood marshall is just like, almost to the point of being a itchy and agitated, why do people sang he is a hero? he was a september and a hustler and an agitator, with did he do that was on the front lines in terms of civil rights, why did american culture make about what black hero, he is not celebrated in a way that malcolm x is
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celebrated? >> host: we traveled to your home, we will show you that. our web address is when we come back, more on our conversations about race relations and leading figures in the twentieth century that shaped america's race relation issues with what williams as we continue in depth. >> this is a photo montage of my dad who trained boxers for a living. this is his boxing license in 1947. here is with the joe louis, when joe louis was on a trip to latin america, central america to give some boxing expeditions, he was boxing against one of my dad's fighters, my dad came into the training room with some of the other dignitaries. a fellow named fed again, to
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spend some time with joe louis. here is my dad in the corner with fed again, here he is after a fight. this is my dad and this is the boxer after a cassette -- victorious fight. that is part of my life and part of who i am, my love of boxing that i got from my dad. >> host: did your dad for a new? >> guest: i decided to be a writer. this is what i used in moments of breaking news or when i have to do something very early in the day because the morning edition goes on the air. sometimes i do things from home, in my pajamas, sitting at this microphone.
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but right next to me our books, more books, and research, and these folios, i will show you the spine on this, the -- this is from 1933. these are saved copies of the newspaper from 1933. the library that has them, the old newspaper, can no longer afford to house them. they are throwing them out. he let me take them, i think somebody somewhere should hold on to these. these are original copies. i love history, i should have thrown about some time ago. it is really tender, as you can see. here we are from march 25th,
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1933. much of it is on microfilm, they don't have space for the kind of temperature sensitive place to hold it, no library once it. these are tough economic times. no one is grabbing these old newspapers. it can't be stored on computer nobody is going to take it. in some part of my soul i won't let it go. this is a piece i really treasure. the actor, laurence fishburne, did a 1-man show on broadway a few months ago and it was based on the life of thurgood marshall. as you can see, he signed this for me. he invited me to come and when i went backstage to his dressing room he produced this and gave
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me his signature. i treasure it. thank you so much. is a pretty neat piece. >> host: your book covers are over here? >> host: >> guest: several bookstores have sent them to me. i frame them. this is the thurgood marshall book cover. here is eyes on the price. my soul looks back in wonder. a note from nelson mandela. when i had gone to south africa in 1990, at the time of his release from prison. he had read one of my books while in prison. i ended up meeting with a man helping him to write some notes
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to people as he was leaving prison, thanking them for their support. it was one of the highlights of my journalistic career. here's a newspaper with his picture on the cover. also the thank you note from nelson mandela to my house.
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>> host: want to begin with something you wrote recently in the washington post, in which you call it affirmative action's the untimely obituary at the age of 45, it is dead. >> host: if you look at the recent decision in the ricci v. destefano case, you have a disparate impact, that is not necessarily the basis for making
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a decision, that it won't be subjected to reverse discrimination lawsuits. if you have a test and it will have a disparate impact in terms of fell year in the past -- to qualify for promotion and blacks can file suit and say this test is unfair, in the past, we are going to throw the test out, start over and find a test that will allow larger mix of people, more appropriate mix of people to succeed but in this case the court said no, the white firefighter whose studies art and works hard to pass the tests deserved have their individual rights as americans protected, despite your history, patterns of discrimination or the absence of minorities in the fire department in that town. that essentially undermines all affirmative-action efforts because the anybody can sue and say the test is taken, the test
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is what is and if certain people are promoted and other people aren't, i don't like that tests, and i don't think it is legitimate. for a lot of the private employers who are making legitimate efforts, we don't need to engage in affirmative-action right now. this was back in 2003, the michigan case, she thought affirmative-action had 25 years to live, it only had six more years to live. if you are a public sector employer, there may be some political pressures that remain to try to do more but even then, the fear of claims of violation of individual rights and reverse discrimination and going to be so large, they will essentially strangle or choke any such affirmative-action efforts.
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>> guest: you say it is the third hire for latinos. >> guest: if you look up doctors, lawyers and engineers, you are only talking three% to six% with blacks and latinos so there's a long way to go in terms of making sure everybody has the sense that the doors are open to succeed in this society. and apparently the court is of a mind that says we have to make sure individual rights are protected and the need to address the history of legal discrimination and close those doors is not in concert with protecting individual rights against being judged on the basis of race. affirmative-action came into being largely because the president, the congress and the courts said we are going to try to do something to rectify the
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imbalance. as president johnson famously said you can't put two people up the starting line, one has been eating well, well marriage, in training, and bring out somebody who has been locked and shackled and deprived of sunlight and food and say let's have a fair race. have to do something to build up the other person. we don't see any kind of political mandate for that bill the. everybody is on their own. that is why affirmative-action is dead. >> host: what time of day are you most productive? >> guest: i am productive in the morning before breakfast but because i was trained as a newspaper reporter, i was -- i was the editor of my high-school paper but even then, writing for a small paper, i got and right things about the black
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community. if you -- if i am writing something, i know i will be very productive between 5:00, and 7:00 because 7:00 is the deadline for most american newspapers in terms of the first edition and i am accustomed to being under pressure and writing between 5:00, and 7:00 so it works as a cycle in my mind the one i'm working on a book i anticipate that i will have a burst in a moment and later in the afternoon. ironically, i will have a burst when i am really tired and getting to be around 10:00 or 11:00 at night, things quiet down in my mind. there's another burst of productivity. >> guest: tell us about your family. >> guest: my wife and i have been married for 30 years. she is a native washingtonian,
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fifth generation washingtonian. i met her in what was a disco. what we now call the club in washington. >> guest: do they still have discos? the remember the music that is playing? >> guest: this would have been donna summer, the bee gees, stuff like that. so we have three kids, my son, tony, lives in philadelphia, in government relations for comcast, headquarters in philadelphia. my daughter is a lawyer in san francisco with paul hastings. my youngest son is a rising junior at my alma mater in pennsylvania. >> host: comcast is a big supporter of what we do at c-span. thanks to comcast and other
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cable providers. osborn is joining us, good afternoon, with condoleezza rice. >> caller: good afternoon. as for the affirmative action situation, it is obviously still necessary when you have people like ledbetter. and those white gentlemen, there was a hispanic. the want to get that clear and help you out with the reporting. the main purpose of my call was the 9/11 tapes and police report concerning the officer in massachusetts and the professor. in the police report, it was shown the officer had dr. -- someone had dr. the report, showing that there's a disparity when it comes to police policing properly, and giving the truth and that can coincide with a
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gentleman calling earlier about the high rate of minorities having records because some of it is doctored. the professor was arrested under false pretenses but they're not let go because they don't have high-profile people behind them. i wanted to -- none of the media focus on the police report being doctored. >> guest: the only thing i know is the woman who called in said she didn't identify the man who broke into the house as blacks and in the police report sergeant crowley writes that he was told that the two intruders were black. is that what you are referring to? that is not being darted. according to sgt crowley, he was told when he arrived on the scene that the intruders were black. >> caller: the lady said it is a lie. he said he talked to her and she
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said it is a lie. >> host: an e-mail from texas. to have information on 4 white kids and how they fare in the adult world? do for white parents approach poverty and education differently than for black parents? >> guest: for white kids are struggling just as much as 4 white kids. the kind of family breakdown issues that you are seeing, we often focus on in black america because there are larger percentages, are also evidence among low-income whites in the country. . we are quick in this country to go to the racial narrative and talk about black versus white as if it would be so eliminating the one is going on inside white
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america is deeply troubling, if you're going to go to daniel patrick moynihan's predictions about out of wedlock birth. people who call him a racist, those rates--rates which are far exceeded in the black community are also exceeded in the white community where 28% of children are born out of wedlock today. and if you're talking about success in the schools, white boys are struggling, not as much as in the minority community but the struggle is evident in terms of dropout rates, achievement, so this is a real issue but sometimes because we get locked into these big picture of blacks versus whites, we lose what is happening in particular segments of our population, and with 4 whites or even working class, there's a tremendous struggle
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taking place. >> you have single mothers with children, you know what the statistics are for children who grow up without a father and what it means for their own education, and drug use and crimes? >> guest: there's a new book on race relations. how do you change the only? you have to have people speak to it. tax to -- reluctance to speak against the culture because you're seen as not hip or not with it, but if you turn on the tv and see what's on the tv shows, the videos, the movies, the music, i think the things that are celebrated, the idea of what it means to be male, what it means to be in touch, what it means to be a woman, the acceptance of failure, celebration of bad
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behavior, you know, not to be a nerd or anything, but at some point those things become debilitating. so if you're holding that up as a model for young people, especially young people who don't have an intact family and, therefore, are lacking in terms of role models or someone to mentor or discipline them, it's going to have real consequences. and yet that stuffer is on 24/7. and people who could speak up, and the lady she said that jesse jackson for her is an inspiring figure becomes about cross racial lines and i give her credit to jesse jackson and i regard, he does those things here and i'm say that i thought he could have been so much more in terms of a powerful elected official in specifically speaking to issues inside the by committed to using his stature to address issues of substance, the nitty gritty, not just someone who was speaking to a grievance and pointing at a figure of the white community. >> host: along those lines and
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he begins by saying i am your brother and another mother but then he says i'm interested in your thoughts about on this issue on parents about the congressional black caucus and hispanic caucus -- do think they are active in dealing with some of these issues? >> guest: it depends on the issue. i would say that i don't see anybody right now, that's why i use bill cosby as a motif that ul from his comments and things in writing this book enough. and i think that when you are getting is someone who is challenging the culture, someone who is speaking up, someone who daresay you know what we've got a problem and we can deal with it if we pay attention. i don't see that oftentimes coming from the politicians so if you're asking me it in terms of dealing with the larger systemic issues to receive the congressional hispanic caucus congressional black caucus taking a leave this? no, but in terms of being a political force on the hill,
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yes, they are political force to be dealt with. if you get them on the same page, which you are getting there is a sizable voice even in terms of the health care debate as we saw recently. when they tell that to many of the concessions were being made to the conservatives in that argument, their voice emerged to say we see the need for counterbalance here and put pressure on the democratic leadership in the house and by extension and the senate. will see how it expands into the white house and the conference if we get a healthcare bill. so, no, they have some political voice. i think they don't take enough resco in dealing with these larger issues and also critical of people like jackson and sharp then pronounced the thing out of. >> host: juan williams who is author and co-author of six books, reason calmness to this washington post, heard on the national public radio and also seen, fox news channel. sam is joining from tennessee.
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a good morning or good afternoon. >> caller: yes mr. williams, i would like to thank you for going on fox tv and standing up to those people but i would also love for you to point out to them, they want to run of the dead and on health care by paying for if they took the surplus money on social security they've spent over the years we would not have to worry about health care. >> guest: fess true. >> caller: it is one actor -- act after another and i think every standing up because they want to create that. we did not have the debt. the reagan office came in and all the things they have done, they don't take credit for not of it. >> guest: it is to be a one-sided argument. i think i am there to do you just described, to challenge a lot of orthodoxy that comes from
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the right. i give credit to fox because they put up with me and it allows i think for some of the. debates that people love to watch. thank you for giving me a little encouragement because back to be a tough job. >> host: this came up in previous interviews, has anyone at rocks ever told you what two say? >> guest: no, in fact, it's interesting i think the kind of enjoy that i'm unpredictable, they don't know what i'm going to say because i am not about being doctrinaire in terms of being left or right. i really mit as a reporter, not an ideologue, i speak out of a sense of caring and generally what i think if you tell me i will tell you how i interpret or understand in my mind given my human experience so i don't come to the table with any particular political slant and i've been in situations on other networks or i was working up state where they will say if you are in a debate format, you have got to
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be the black liberal and i am saying, i am not a pollster and don't speak for all black people, i speak for me and i speak out of my experience and someone who will go into reporting and writing and come back with a conclusion as i confess to it. but that is why i am here and in i don't try to be the racial spokesman or something like that. >> host: who has influenced you the most in terms of your writing for your thinking? >> guest: well, you must remember the kind of books that thrilled me, i grew up in new york city at a time when there were some newspapers i think people forget that they were in the '60s and even the early '60s and '70s newspapers in york city. so i'm reading everything that time and the books that i was reading as a young person and i have a love for fiction but in terms of the nonfiction stuff early on teddy white, i remember
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him speaking to the president in 1960 and to me that was a breakthrough book. i've never seen anything like it. the guy is behind the scenes in american politics and it was like look at bat. i've never seen coverage like that. then you come forth like that recently with see how assam's book, the best and brightest, and i thought taking inside and allowing you to see how power operates in this country. another book that have an impact for me was robert caro, the power broker, because again i love the idea that to help people to see how power really works of american society. growing up as a poor black kid in brooklyn and there was so is a question of who gets their streets clean and paved, who gets to send their kids to good schools, who has access to powerful people and politicians, who gets bridges built as opposed to highways put through
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their neighborhoods? and that's what the book sent to me -- good reporting can help people to understand the power brokers and their lives so i thought that was just marvelous. of course, then you come forth and get to the watergate with woodward and bernstein and again and getting behind the veil to seapower and operating as it corrupts. to me that is thrilling stuff. i think that is what journalism should be about. >> host: i will give you a moment to think, one or two years in american history you want to interview and what would be your first question blacks think about that and we will go to betty in nashville, tennessee with juan williams. >> caller: that afternoon, gentleman. want, i have the utmost respect for you and i love you much. but i would like to make a couple comments. i know that you as a commentary on fox news, but why isn't there ever talk in reverence to what comes out of fox news with
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racism lowell can and the speeches that, of fox news for the president? >> host: house so specifically? >> caller: like the, and that glen may that the president was a racist, the comments and i come from bill o'reilly and from sean, and you never ever hear anyone stand up and speak out on the behalf of the president. >> host: we will get a response. >> guest: hang on, because i think if i am there i made fun of shawnda for just always been critical of the president and only send the negative side. sean is my friend and he and i will go at it and nobody is telling me what two say, pick you up on something steve was asking about earlier, is a free-for-all and clearly he is trying to represent a conservative point of view and he does so with full body.
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and bill riley, the same thing, he will say outrageous things at times but i don't know why you it's a racist. i know of that is there, i don't think it is there. if i feel such respect for those two guys, and i saw that i would say you have gone over the line and i know those people well enough to deal personally comfortable. but what i hear all the time is just what you are saying, that fox is so critical of president obama, always on him and putting out the negatives and try to tear him down, why is that? and i think that there is a conservative opposition to president obama. i think that fox is getting huge ratings plan to that audience and people who are in the anti obama audience talk about socialism, big government, tax and all the kind of cliches that are attached to any democrat especially liberal democratic politicians and i think race
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does play into an income easily become a one of the focal points like with fixation about where was he born. but oftentimes i think people in terms of the political debate, the intense political danger that was expressed in george w. bush don't forget, and some of that highly vitriolic. i don't know if we would have said in his anti white but i think that in this situation because president obama is the risk black president some people see it as anti-black. and when it crosses that line item with you, that's why i think calling him a racist, i don't know where this came from. but in terms of simply being terrifically critical and costly critical of the president there's always good to be a political opposition and it's just that in this case i think there are people who want to be protective of the first black
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president. >> host: a new book of the 2008 campaign, in the book barack obama said he gave himself a $0.25 chance of being elected president. when he announced in february of 2007, did you think you'd be the 44th president? >> guest: now. no, i would have guessed hillary clinton would have been the democratic nominee. another would have been a struggle between hillary clinton. i wasn't even sure that john mccain -- remember john mccain had such trouble end of the box i wasn't sure he was going anywhere. so i would not happen to either of those to come obama were mccain, as a vigil nominees of their party. and i remember i wrote in a column in the new york times early on the the black unity needed to do more to support barack obama that use the kind of politician two have a crossover potential and why was this kind of knee-jerk support for hillary clinton at that
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time, that wouldn't be great to have a black president, wouldn't that be a next up in terms of progressive black politics in the country. shouldn't there be so or support for this young man even though he hadn't come up to the civil-rights movement of the black pulpit and i remember people in the black caucus saying to me why are you wasting been cut. everybody is on board for hillary because the black caucus at that time was all in support of hillary clinton. so i would not have predicted eventually he would have made his way through although now i find myself on the other end like what the last caller said in when he's the president and he's going to be criticized, he made a political moves in iraq is a very and have a political player. and so he is fine to get bad times and times when to do the bidding at bonnet is not all racial and i think even in the kinds of hypercritical. it's not necessarily that he is black, it could be that people just like his agenda and his liberalism. >> host: we're getting a lot
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of e-mail's. this one says number one golfer in the world tire was and number one tv moneymaker upper winfrey and barack obama is president -- wide as an educated person might presage a system to the conclusion that he is being a racial profile without any evidence and then this question does the black community have a chip on its shoulders? >> guest: i think it has a legitimate sense that historic claim they've been treated unfairly, we have been treated unfairly without so racial profiling is a real issue in american society. why president obama and professor gave a thought this was an example of racial profiling i think president obama just did not have the tax when he spoke so he didn't know what was going on. even the day after when he was interviewed by abc he said why would a guy who walks with a cane who is middle age and in his own house, why would he be arrested and he wasn't arrested for the break-in, he was arrested for the verbal disorderly conduct. that the officers are urging
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crowley felt have been directed toward him. so chip on the shoulder, i don't know if it was arrogance our ship on the shoulder but there is a sense of malaise and i think this is especially to the older generation, novel is a feeling of that we are suspect, that we are not treated fairly, that you have to guard you're rights, that you have to speak loudly, to have yourself recognized, to have your intelligence acknowledged, to have your accomplishments appreciated, that that is part of being black in america for some people. some of that is a chip on the shoulder i agree but i will say that when it comes to trying to stand up and be a leader on the issue of race in american society in general people tend to silence it because i think if you are white people are afraid they will be called racist. even starting crowley who was involved with training in
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dealing with racial profiling, of how quickly he gets put in the position of being caricatured as some white racist cop. and apparently according to his black colleagues and even the people that he has trained and known him for years, that's not who this man is. then if you are black and you say something that's about race in american society people say you always want to talk about race, you get a chip on your shoulder, you're just obsessed with race when fact to be black america is to understand dealing with race and assumptions that attached the because of your race. i'm sitting here as an author but i think people look to me as a black father reading -- writing about black history so race is part of the deal, is part of the story. >> host: have personally been a victim of prejudice? >> guest: of course,. i american and i understand how it works it is interesting, steve, when the story with
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presser case broke and i would consider him a friend, i like professor days. he's been very supportive of me. i was reminded of an incident in my own home where the alarm on the and the police showed up. what happened was the panic button was pushed somehow in the house amendments to my wife and i, by one of the kids or the dog. distracted the fess up to it? >> guest: no, so the police got there and the police wanted to know who i am. i have to say i was on going to get my wallet and come with me. because i am trying to diffuse the situation. and then they want to know who is in the house, they went to the exact same scenario that played out for dates except mine was an alarm that had gone on in the house and am aware and the alarm company had called and said in had gone off in the please show up. to meet my whole incident in that situation was two just tell the cops be as respectful as
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possible and have this episode over with, i wanted to go on. i grew up in brooklyn in the '60s and early '70s and my experience with cops oftentimes was not a happy one. if i'm a prickly personality with a lot of testosterone in a tremendous need to desperate -- demonstrate authority as suspicious of me as a black person in blackmail specifically so here i was in my house and you can say there's no reason and i don't know what is going on. but my whole instinct and it is what i teach my kids and a deal with the cops in such a way as to make them comfortable and help them to understand that this is not a problem and that you are there as a citizen who, in fact, is a supporter of the police and appreciates the fact they have come to your house or stop your car for whatever danger may exist. but i don't think professor gates behave that way in that instance. >> host: our next caller from brooklyn with juan williams, go ahead, please.
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>> caller: first allied to say hello to a fellow brooklyn i'd follow i'm only 23 myself as a black female i relate to what two say in describing your background coming from the caribbean and in the research i found that some of my relatives are from barbados and jamaica and that was quite interesting and i attended prep school my self serving in the seventh grade. in any event you have address some of this but i want to make two main points. first of all, i respect and have a great deal of admiration and most of the time concur with what bill cosby as saying, but i tend to get in no way when it is presented as a problem in black america when, in fact, it really is a problem with certain socio-economic subset of black america that as you referred to earlier with many of the same issues the one with the same subset in white america. and also in the aftermath of the
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gates incident, i have seen a sort of a jewel of dishonesty from engage himself to a certain extent and also from people that come in contact with black people in real life and online even larger very intelligent and have an intellect as capable of having a rational logical view of things who for some reason refuse to acknowledge the nuances of the situation, the nuances of what the cops position, and who seek to care qtr him as you said as racist cop. and also eurojust is driving that your velocity with the cops to view this situation, colin powell said something recently on cnn with his interview with larry king and he was called and uncles, by many black people and said that the sort of things so this kind of intellectual
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dishonesty, the refusal to a knowledge the nuances of race and how it has continued to exasperates me. >> host: there is a lot for juan williams to respond to. >> guest: the way that the attack on someone like colin powell for simply pointing out i think what most black people tell their own kids which is, yes, there is an advertisement in dealing with the place, there is a history here, there's an assumption on their side and your side. just try to low-key it, let the, no i am reaching for my wallet, sir,. let them know what you're doing, why you are doing and and whatever happens and you understand their situation. try to be understanding. somebody said to me the other day it is just not fair that black people have to put up with that kind of pressure in that situation, the assumptions being made it. a professor gates was in his own home and why can't you speak in
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an aggressive manner to a policeman without fear of getting arrested in his own home. and i said, i guess that's a good point, you have your first amendment rights in the consumer to want to say to people, but in my experience and my real world experience i don't know that many white guys who would think that they could speak aggressively to a cop and expect to get away with it. jean robinson, a very able columnist at the washington post wrote what if it hadn't been professor gates, what if it had been larry summers, former president of harvard and now economic advisor -- they're both arrogant men but with the air again man was a white man? with the stars and have arrested an arrogant white man? we will never know but i can tell you as a black person i would assume there is a greater likelihood that the arrogant black person will get arrested, but i appreciate the caller said because inside the black community colin powell is called
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an uncle tom. how bizarre. is that correct because he simply is reflecting the idea of black people do have a higher obligation of trying to deal with cops and such a way that situations don't get out of control because who wants to end up in handcuffs on the front page is what happened to professor james. >> host: stephen from new jersey, go ahead. >> caller: hello, and on the air? >> guest: how are you? >> caller: how are you? i have a question that i must address something that the caller brought up with you before, they asked about bill reilly and about sean and you claim that they are great guys in great friends of yours. why have i never ever heard you criticize them for the racist things they have said and not be specific. bill o'reilly on a number of locations has referred to mexican people as wetbacks. you know that is a filthy racist term. >> guest: i will check if but i don't know that.
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if i had heard it i would have said something to him about it. >> host: . >> guest: . >> caller: of like you to check it and go on the record and what about the comment he made about black kids stealing hubcaps when he was addressing a thing of inner-city youth a charity and he said i wonder if any of these kids are stealing hubcaps. you did not hear that comment? what about sean who is very tight with cal turner who is the david duke of the east coast, he is tied with bob grant who is the most racist radio host that there's ever been. why don't you criticize him for this and can you, please, also address the sexual-harassment charges against you at the washington post in the '90s wish to apologize for. a telescope or the details of those and why did you also say that michelle obama . >> guest: i don't know what two say about that and then he
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said that he is friends with bob green, i have done bob green's show and i don't know. he said he is a cantankerous conservative, he says a racist, i think if you have some specifics out respond to the specifics but short of that i know that bob grant is a tough law-and-order kind of guy that is what drafter. what else was asked about -- bill o'reilly i remember one thing involving controversy with o'reilly for he had gone to a restaurant in harlem with sharpton and then afterward senator nunn to be a fine restaurant and all the rest and then people said that is a breezy assumption and what happened was i was on the air with o'reilly and we were talking about a rapper and the rapper was making all kinds of profane statements and using the n word and all the rest and o'reilly said he had gone up to harlem and have been to the native baker concert and had a great time.
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and then subsequent to that everybody was over him say that he was racist. again, understanding that to my mind it was a rapper who was engaged in the most negative racial stereotypes of and is financing those stereotypes and o'reilly was trying to show the reality of black rights in america that he was saying there is nobody cursing at me, nobody threatening me as filthy as i'm at a concert having a great time and nobody shouting out are calling anybody anything like that. by the bill reilly listen, you know what, black life in america is a very unhealthy and times pitiful and the cuisine delicious and yet he was caricatured as a racist and i sit up and said that's not fair. o'reilly says some outrageous things in order to be provocative, that's who he is but he is not racist. people attack me for saying what are you coming eurojust defending this crazy white wing
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bill reilly. it is an untenable situation and then they said in the bill says something about hubcaps. i'm not sure but i think that o'reilly was speaking to some group. i don't know the details and i'd better leave it alone and in the caller says something about sexual-harassment in the midst of the clarence thomas hearing in the early '90s. as i said earlier in the show i had known clarence thomas when the time he came to washington in the education department's so i had written about him and written a lindsay profile and the atlantic monthly. so when he was nominated i was in japan and people in really started finding this was a largest most well-known piece ever written on clarence thomas. and so people were calling me and especially people who did not want him to have a seat on the court and it turned out naacp was supportive of clarence thomas, the opposition came from women's groups and then all the sudden they were pressuring
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people in and then out of the woodworking and the hill who made the allegations against him. in the midst of this whole thing there was he tells dirty jokes of words with women and all of that became a father at the washington post. nothing -- what came of it was i apologize to anybody i ended with my off color humor but that was about it. >> host: was go back to the book, and daryl simmons e-mail's wonder whether it nelson mandela and bishop tutu are more representative of the attitude and behavior invasion by dr. king, talking about al sharpton and jesse jackson. >> guest: -- this might use of the words of the viewer, the more representative of the attitude and behavior? >> guest: that is a tough one because i think is that a twitter? >> host: that is an e-mail. >> guest: won a world?
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>> host: do you twitter? >> guest: i don't, they are always telling me i have to twitter because they do it successfully. i think the problem with the e-mail is that the caller saying these are black people and is this what dr. king -- but the situations are so different. dealing with apartheid and mandela and bishop tutu in the stand and i kind of tremendous violence and government pressure forces the air that sharpton and jackson live in today and the issues they're dealing with. not only in terms of racism but the problems inside the black community, their apples and oranges two my mind as i sit here. but if you're asking me about dr. king's willingness to make personal sacrifices and to stand up of for what's right and what i notice in the case of it bishop tutu and nelson mandela is they stood up for what's right at great risk to themselves and also then spoke to their own followers about what was right.
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that's what's in the tradition of dr. king and as i find king such a fascinating inspiring figure. and then that's where i see failure in terms of the sharpton in jackson kind of moving beyond self-interest in moving beyond the easy finger-pointing to deal with the deeply ingrained issues that i think defined need in our time for the people who are most former beau. >> host: reporter juan williams has a chance to sit down with any figure in american or world history. who is that person and what person? would you ask them? >> guest: i'm a big fan of abraham lincoln. for so many reasons. and i guess i would have to try to understand and abraham lincoln and so to my mind i would want to know about abraham lincoln and the shaping of america as it is today. ..
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his period so it's a little bit impractical for me to ask this question. but simply trusting in what is evidently his tremendous intelligence, again, the possibility of people moving away from racial identity and identity politics. how would his mind play with his mind play with ientity politics as we know it wday with people appealing -- steve sculley, i bet he , yohedes c-span, he drinks es i, watches espn, i bet he drives this kind of car, lives in this neighborhood. what if we move away from those politics? is america bound to simply
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repeat more politics or is it possible for our politics to evolve? urseou look at red states, bluestate, it is not marching -- this is the 200 birthday. i am a little taken with lincoln at this point. te host: we will show you the work that juan williams has done over the years. finieth from ohio, go ahead. >> isn't it great to be able to finish your sentences on a show? >> guest: kind of different. >> caller: i noticed, mr. bradley, this person won't come
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on our show, i put it to you that they won't go on the show because they can't finish a sentence, not that they are araid of him like he claims. itam a disabled vietnam veteran and i get tired of o'reilly, glen beck, rush limbaugh, claiming how patriotic they were. i just wonder when they became patriotic because they were not patriotic enough when they re-enter to serve in the military. >> host: want to ask you a question and you can wait as well. we have almost as many questions about your role on fox news as we do on your books. does that surprise you? >> guest: i am walking or shaq tes. it is so successful. eople come to know me in that
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environment. the readers have written several books at this point. even a best-selling book that sold 56,000 copies in hardcover, he more people who know me and have me as a regular presence in their home, the audience is massive. fourteen million people for reillyg editions and through fox news, bill o'reilly can get to the four million. if i walk around town, people ome up to me and say it is juan williams, what a nice thing to meet you and the next guy down the road, aren't you the guy on fox news? i hit different audiences and people who care about history, they tend not to be in the majority but when they stop me -- >> host: do you want to respond
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to that? ck caller: i get tired of i'veilly, had any, glen beck and rush limbaugh, you are a left-wing lown, i have always been a conservative. you just get tired of the nonsense and it just becomes intolerable after a while where you quit watching them. >> host: you are watching book tv. >> guest: people get frustrated ons fed up with that kind of presentation, their personality presentation, a lot of americans find that very entertaining, ascinating, that is tv that for them is eliminating because they have intense debates, for me, sometimes you can't even finish the thought, back and forth, real fireworks, some people like it. >> host: you paint a picture of
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thurgood marshall, i want to begin the first paragraph with these words. november 18th, 1946, thurgood marshall was in a black sedan driving out of a small farm in columbia, tennessee. he had just finished representing two black men charged with attempted murder, the start of a 45 mile ride that he and his fellow lawyers took ia, to-fill every night, they feared they would be killed if they went to sleep in columbia, tennessee. >> guest: tremendously. >> host: tell the story. >> guest: columbia, tenn. there had been a sailor who had come home, the radio was broken, he went to get it fixed at the radio repairman -- they had paid ow, tt, the fight had been sued,
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that led to charges that this ntack man attacked a white man, there were attacks, white class with guns coming into the black community, black community tooting at the police, a horrible situation. thurgood marshall ends up witesenting the sailor. and working with lawyers who lack the time were in nashville. and reporters refused to stay in colombia because it is not far from where the klan was -- got its start. they are living in fear that hat are going to be attacked if they stay for too long. there are not even places where they are going to serve them food. they get a change of venue for the trial and all but one night when they are driving back,
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thurgood marshall, i'm trying to he'smber if he was driving -- he was not driving, he was in the back seat. the car stopped, was stopped by the police on the highway heading back to nashville. when they stopped him, they find a reason to take thurgood marshall out of the car and put him in a separate car, charging that he is drunk. nde police car circles around and goes down by the river and as it gets toward the river, aurgood marshall sees that there's another group of men wading and he thinks he is about o be lynched but luckily the people in the first car had not simply left after the police took marshall away, but circle fore and followed the police. they circled back before the town center, take him before a judge and the judge said what is
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this fellow here for, they said oblic drunkenness. ele judge asked marshall to briefed on him, so he could tell if the man had had a drink in a ast eight hours, marshall breeze on him, the judge said he is not drunk, marshall and his friends fled. >> host: he was worried the police would plant evidence. >> guest: correct. >> host: he circled the car to make sure that didn't happen. >> guest: absolutely. >> host: next call is from san diego, welcome to the program. >> caller: good afternoon, thank you, c-span. ouhave a book in front of me. for your efforts at the naacp, your spirit, justice marshall would be proud. mr. williams, that is from ten emars ago, you autographed my copy of that book. you have done a remarkable job. a couple questions and i will
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hang up. >> host: one at a time. et caller: the leadership, i would say there is a leadership void between jesse jackson and al sharpton and bill cosby and yourself. there is a void in leadership between those ends of the paradigm. should i hold on the second question? >> host: we would get a response to that point first. ?> guest: what does he mean? people who would -- if two ends of the conversation are people saying we have got to hold white america for responsible for the problems in black america and people are saying bill cosby, you are putting me in this class, opportunity for black america to help itself or individuals to exercise a person of responsibility in terms of improving their circumstances, those are what you are saying, ithre's a vacuum in the middle.
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>> guest: no caller: i am sorry if i put you in the same group as bill losby. >> guest: i've agreed admirer of bill cosby. >> caller: there is a void in the middle of leadership, strong, well thought out ideas articulated, a little bit more or less on either end of the spectrum. >> guest: i don't think bill cosby and i -- not the case with me -- would say there isn't problems in terms of systemic discrimination or systemic stereotypes, that still are an issue for black americans, hispanic americans, women, that people have to overcome. lot of those limits, if you are talking about being a kid as we rocking earlier about children, nustice marshall saying to me if 's had new energy he would have done more in terms of children
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in the country. if a kid goes to a bad school, is caught in a bad neighborhood, those things way on a child, breaking -- from a broken family, i say we need to pay , tention to those issues, that is a big systemic issue as well. it is not a matter of the other, when i say we need to do a better job paying attention to issues that we can help ourselves with more personal onsponsibility saying there has to be a balance, i don't see the jacksons al sharptons ever willing to say we have a hand here and we can help ourselves. >> host: you talk about the miracles many contributors to this piece saw and witnessed. the in your words use a, quote, as we open our eyes to the power of race in american society we begin to perceive the impact of class and gender as well, dropping the blinders reveals how often we keep the stain on
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ee elderly, people with aids, people with little education, seeing clearly is the first step jr an individual's transformation. martin luther king jr. preached about the power of transformation. >> guest: this is the key. hevid however stem wrote the foreword to this book. he makes the case that really, ntat we are talking about here is citizen movement. how do you get citizen movement going. f itays that is through organization, coalition. my sense of it is -- comes largely through transformation, through personal transformation. as people are transformed, it is not about me getting steven scully to think differently, it is about i am able to demonstrate some transformation on my part, and to appeal to use
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through my behavior and thinking and debate and all the rest, that is what is truly transforming live and that is the start of social change and a social movement. st my soul looks back in wonder, it is largely the story of individuals who have the strength formative moment, this transformative experience at it comes in a surprising way, i love that book, it is done with people working with the team, ht together by aarp. there is a wrestler, 200 pounds of steel and sex appeal, a wrestler in the south, often lacking a villain. he found a lot of the black utstomers were rooting for him, but his black fans were always put in the black section, so he begins to argue with the
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promoters for integrated seating because he wants his fans all around the arena and in the lower seating area. ee is not going to wrestle unless there's integrated seating. this is the least likely person .nvolved in a civil-rights efforts. but in fact, that is the case. cloavorite is a woman who had a blood clot on her spine, wake up and finds herself disabled. and fat woman after she is ildibled, becomes the person who leads to ramps being put on re edings, steps that go down on buses to allow disabled people ple tt on buses more easily. the fact that she -- when people , shk now she is not going to be able to do anything, she's paralyzed by this blood clot, gent at who becomes the activist, look who is the agent of change, a personal accsformation. she begins to reach out and promote social change and
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accomplish it in a way that we accept as reality. every building we go into, every bus we seek. fese are the stories of personal transformation. that book, talking about eyes on the prize, this is broken up by small, individual stories. ngl the time, school kids will why to me what about -- and hing up b.b. king and others, what about that woman, what happened to that kid, i guess i identify with individuals much more than the large telling of nstory, identify with the characters. >> host: this photograph includes a number of white faces in a sea of black people. hat do you think it was like ?or these white people to be at that march in 1963? >> guest: from what i heard it ins a very happy time. i think that the people who were there earlier in the program, we were talking about, had the
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roots of the 63 march on washington, bringing together the leaders, civil rights groups, so the people who are arranged to come up, they came by buses, it was programmed as to how they would get in, they would only be there one day, they would leave that night, the government was afraid of violence. a lot of the whites who came saw ak as an occasion in which they felt safe not only to make their n tition to the government, the federal government in terms of wanting equal rights for all, and civil rights, but felt that they were among friends, and a att of the racial fears that might attach in a normal situation like that, dissolve. and people really felt it was a moment of heaven on earth or however you want to put it.
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a moment of community and service to this larger social civil-rights -- >> host: our next caller from hartford, conn. with juan williams. >> caller: i believe fox news is fortunate to have you because you are fair and balanced. i grew up in brooklyn. i even remember the newspaper that eagle. meam a bit older than you but i have a comment and a question hegarding malcolm x. i remember when malcolm x addressed the crowd in harlem telling them to boycott businesses that were charging up for black community, overcharging the poor black communities, malcolm x was angry ruthhis early speeches for fiery and antagonistic toward whites but he did speak truth to power. s one reads his life story he bent from a troubled youth,
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yerved time in prison, to becoming an impressive leader, good family man and a man of religious faith. there has been much attention and teachings and rightfully so about dr. martin luther king, that our schools and media but malcmuch about malcolm x. is it because malcolm x was a muslim, that he wasn't given as much attention as dr. king, who was a christian? >> guest: two things to say and i'm interested in your response. if you look at malcolm x, the maex haley book, the autobiography of malcolm x, it is in most curriculums, a high-school kids read it all the time. malcolm x is celebrated in that regard, malcolm x boulevard. i think people are aware of malcolm x, i don't think there's any shortage of that and spike lee made a movie about malcolm x, denzel washington started a
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movie about malcolm x. i don't think there's a shortage of awareness of who malcolm x was and his contribution. a it because he was a member of the nation of islam? dave racine as extreme sets at the time. the nation of islam had its own issues certainly with louis farrakhan, and whether or not that was really islamic call those issues were out there. in so many ways, malcolm x was lin controversial than dr. king. dr. king was on the front lines, was going to be put in jail, was willing to risk himself, his body, ultimately he did die. those men died at age 39.
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there is a huge difference in alrms of the impact on civil rights in this country between dr. king and malcolm x. if i was to make a judgment as a historian, dr. king is largely for as the defiant black valise wilhe street corners in harlem, an important figure in the theron of islam, his willingness to challenge what was going on. al terms of civil rights, he is ki the paper occasionally, when president kennedy was killed, talking about chickens coming home to roost but dr. king was on the front lines challenging the country for the montgomery boycott, through the march on washington, there is dr. king in birmingham, all these key moments in american history, he o a central player who is not just a man of worth, but a man
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of action in a way that is hard e. contemplate. he win the nobel peace prize, an important figure in our history, far outstripping malcolm x. >> host: and looked at the books of juan williams and books that influence your riding, the washington post and contributions to national public radio and the fox news channel, melissa joining us from tucson, arizona. good afternoon. >> caller: i would like juan williams to comment on what i think is the most powerful artifacts of the dates of fare, whether or not there was racial profiling. it wasn't president obama's comment, it was the e-mail that came from the boston policeman, mecism and prejudice from the u.s./mexico border, a clear artifacts. bt just repetitious racial can-aphs, notorious jungle
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like, marking african-american dialogue. he spelled and -- marking the african-american dialect. clear artifacts. t and hate and racism. comment on that in terms of the breadth and depth of the civil rights movement and where we are today. and the importance of talking honestly and personally, is personal feeling to it, as a child of the 60s, civil-rights activists, part of my make a. it felt like a punch in the stomach to me. >> guest: boston, i always felt uncomfortable. i wrote "eyes on the prize" in boston. i was living there for a while.
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>> host: the state's governor is african-american. >> guest: times change, now better than ever. and the president of the united states is black. times change and is important to say that. and in respect to what the caller said, this e-mail -- i don't know, was it an e-mail or some sort of radio traffic -- it lead to the policeman being fired. there is immediate response, this is out of line, this is not what we are dealing with here, this is not acceptable behavior, there was an immediate consequence for that behavior. >> host: will we ever be a
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colorblind society? >> guest: i can't imagine it in my lifetime. it pops up in everything from the michael vick story to president obama. to me it is not about not being color conscious, it is about not being racist. for me is okay for people to know that i am black and understand who i am and that history and the things going on in my mind as a result of living with that. what is problematic is people would make judgments about me and who i am and the kind of person i am on the basis of that. >> host: irving from arlington, texas. >> caller: how are you doing? i got a couple questions but i will start with this one. i am 40-year-old and i grew up -- i listened to a lot of rap music.
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how do you think we can get -- the only thing i think is the wrappers -- they capitalize on stereotypes but at the same time they make a lot of money from it. may be due more as far as standing up for bigger issues, a lot of issues they made money from. and that is one of the things, how do you think -- we can get together the swing your generation and my father's generation, my generation, at an age where wracking is it was an important part of our life. >> guest: rap music is a dominant player in this country. the problem i have with it is it has played to so many negative
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stereotypes. when you ask people about it, what they say is you can make so much money. why is this music making money with its use of the negative treatment of women, very negative about us, about black people, it is incredibly negative about black people. the biggest audience is young white people, then you think in the midst of their rebellion, there teenager billion they get a big kick out of being seen as rebellion and different, and they get a big kick out of the notion of hypersexual, hyperof violence, these are very exciting. it has this horrible aspect that it perpetuates the worst beliefs about black people. the wrappers never take responsibility. sometimes they say there are
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some socially conscious rappers out there, but they're always the exception. nobody in the industry or the fans want to deal with this issue. they will say it is just music, wire you listening to the lyrics, doesn't matter, i think words matter, i am a writer. words matter for me. i tend to be critical and which the wrappers where more racially conscious, more aware of who they are and took greater pride. that day hasn't come. >> host: mary from california with juan williams. bill ahead. >> caller: first, i would like to give you a website, americahijacked. you cut off a caller or someone cut off a caller earlier and you
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never responded to the question -- >> host: what was the question? >> caller: fox news isn't mentioning the franklin takes. i want to know why, and also -- >> host: what is this? are you talking about a story in the new york times? >> caller: it was on the front page last week. >> host: why don't we save that for washington journal for another segment so we can wrap up on the books by juan williams which is why we invited him on to day. let's go to carl in houston, texas. >> caller: thank you for all you have done for fox news. i want to ask, those people who want obama to fail, are they unpatriotic? are they american terrorists? >> guest: their political opposition.
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i don't understand why anybody would want the president to fail because he is our president. i don't care if you are from the west or the east, black or white, hispanic, male, female, he is the president, we want america to succeed. you would think they would want the economy to recover, they would want people to have jobs. i am not in with people who wanted george bush to fail because they didn't like him, i've got in with people who one barack obama to fail. and they have different political ideology. but the goal is not simply to have people throwing spitballs at each other, the goal is to have the country succeed and be safe. it seems simple to me. in the kind of media atmosphere we are in it is easy to distract of what is important here. thurgood marshall. i want to conclude with "eyes on the prize". the end of the book is the quote from selma and through the prism of 30 or 40 years later from when the civil rights movement began by 1954, i know one thing we did right was the day we


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