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Shocking Updates on Jahessye Case; Michael Jackson: Addict or Not?
Aired October 28, 2011 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST: Here we go.
There`s more to the story of missing Jahessye Shockley. We`ve got the troubling developments.
Plus, last night I went head to head with the attorney for Michael Jackson`s dermatologist. Tonight we are face to face for another round.
And later, a shocking experiment 50 years ago proved we are all capable of evil acts. Are we born to be bad? I`m here to tell you we just might be. We`ll figure this out.
Tonight, breaking news, disturbing updates in the case of missing 5- year-old Jahessye Shockley. Listen to this.
JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST, HLN "ISSUES": Guess what? Tragically, we have another child missing, 5-year-old Jahessye Shockley.
RYAN SMITH, HOST, IN SESSION ON TRUTV (voice-over): Here is the background. She vanished from her home in suburban Phoenix when her mom stepped away to run an errand, but that was two weeks ago.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jahessye`s family is absolutely desperate tonight and they`re also angry. They say that cops, the media, everybody seems to be focusing on the family`s past instead of looking for an abductor.
JERICE HUNTER, JAHESSYE SHOCKLEY`S MOTHER: Don`t ask me about my past. You already know.
SMITH: Jahessye`s mother has been said to have served three-and-a- half years in prison for child abuse of her three other children. Father, a registered sex offender.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have not named any suspects in the case. We do have many persons of interest.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: It`s like this child just went into thin air.
PINSKY: Tonight, we have court documents that say exactly why Jahessye`s mother was sentenced to eight years in prison for child abuse in 2006. She was accused of torturing herself 7-year-old daughter and causing severe injuries to her three other kids.
A psychologist who had evaluated Jerice Hunter wrote, quote, "She was clearly caught up in the cycle of abuse" - meaning the mom - "and was repeating what she had been subjected to by her mother, being the grandmother." In the documents, Jahessye`s mom admits she whipped one of the daughters with an extension cord until she bled while they held her down.
Now, let`s be fair here and be clear. Jahessye`s mom is not a suspect at this time, but this is important information because those who are trying to figure this out, this is how the past can figure out - can figure into what happened to Jahessye today.
Kids that are abused, this is something you should know, kids that are abused are more likely to run away, and when they do run away stay away. They`re the ones who become the street kids. If there`s abuse at the home - kids that are not being abused at home can run away, but they don`t stay away.
Also, kids that are victimized at home, again, abuse, physical, sexual, whatever, even neglect, are at risk of victimization by strangers, by people outside of the home.
So joining me now, Jane Velez-Mitchell. Jane, can you give us an update? What is the latest?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, the latest is that the family is very, very angry with law enforcement. They say that they have their blinders on and they are looking at the mother and the mother says, hey, she`s not responsible.
Yes, she does have this history of child abuse in her past, but her mother, the grandmother, of the missing child says after she got out of prison she changed, and she loves her kids. And the mother of the missing child because Child Protective Services took her other three kids away says they`re holding my babies hostage.
Now, they have split these other kids, the kids who were in the home when this five-year-old vanished into thin air, they`ve split them up. And part of the reason I think is because investigators want to talk to these kids individually. The oldest is 13. What was going on before the child disappeared? Was she in trouble? Was the mother yelling at her? The mother claims she ran an errand.
What was the last moment that you saw this child? Was there anybody else in the neighborhood or in the yard? There are so many unanswered questions here.
But, as you mention, Drew, Dr. Drew, the police are not calling this mother a suspect.
PINSKY: No. And even though that she had been caught up in the cycle of abuse in the past, you`re right, we don`t know that she had continued in the present, that has not been confirmed, nor can it be confirmed at this time, and - and this is going to sound perhaps difficult for people to get their head around, because she - even if she - let`s say did abuse her child, it doesn`t mean she doesn`t love her child.
And that`s the way the cycle of abuse kind of works. People don`t understand the impact of what they`re doing, and she clearly is very, very distressed by the loss of this child, and you know, I don`t see how a mom of any stripe could not be otherwise.
Now, she`s very critical of media and law enforcement for not paying more attention to more stories like hers. Jane, do you think she has a point there?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I think that she is upset that the media and the police keep focusing on the mother, and certainly if she had nothing to do with this, I would understand her frustration, but the fact is that police always start from the people who are the closest to the child or the missing person, and they move outward.
We`re seeing the same thing in other big cases like the Baby Lisa case. They have to start with the people who are in the immediate surroundings, but that doesn`t mean they haven`t done anything else. They have been searching the homes of the registered sex offenders. They`ve been conducting sweeps. They`ve been devoting a huge amount of resources to this case.
So while she may have had - initially had a point, right now, police are doing a tremendous amount. The only thing is, if they didn`t get a jump on this case immediately with every passing second, the chance of finding a missing child of this age alive diminishes radically. So the family does have a point if indeed the police waited until the media pressure was on them to start going full court press.
PINSKY: But, Jane, I want to just drill down even a little bit further. I mean, hundreds of children are lost and vanished in this country every day, and yet the media, we tend to focus in on certain cases. I`m not even sure why certain cases, you know, get on the radar and some don`t. I mean, I think she really has a point.
I`m glad we`re focusing on her for her and I hope it makes a difference, but it`s a very hard thing to - to focus on hundreds of cases every day. I don`t think that`s the media`s responsibility. And so for her to be angry with that, I understand it, but it seems a little misplaced perhaps, do you think?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, you`re absolutely right. Many, many, many, many, many kids disappear every day. The vast majority of them are found. Quite often it`s a case of, oh, miscommunication, oh, you were going to pick me up at the game, I thought I was going to walk home, that kind of thing.
So when you actually narrow down the cases and then take away the custody dispute cases, there`s a very, very small, tiny percentage of stranger abductions, and it`s really a tiny fraction of the missing children that are reported all the time. And thank God most of those missing children are found safe and sound.
So there are a large percentage of cases of those that are really troublesome cases where it turns out that it`s - it is someone close to the family. Now, that doesn`t mean that stranger abductions don`t happen. We`ve seen it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We saw it with Jessica Lunsford. We saw it with Elizabeth Smart.
PINSKY: That`s right.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: It does happen, but the probability of it is very small.
PINSKY: And as you said, and this is the important part to remember, those first few days are really the critical for - if there`s been a stranger abduction, critical for the child.
PINSKY: And, really, I hope they make some progress with this baby.
So, thanks, Jane. Appreciate the update.
And up next, he`s back. That`s right, the attorney for Michael Jackson`s dermatologist is here. Graciously, he`s agreed to return for more of our spirited conversation that we seem to have picked up last night. Those of you that saw that fiery debate last night, we`re going to pick up where we left off.
Go on over to HLNTV.com/michaeljackson for all the latest on the Conrad Murray trial. And we`ll be back after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY (voice-over): Everyone was asleep at the wheel. That Dr. Murray allowed Dr. Klein to do it without calling Dr. Klein, questioning Dr. Klein. And, by the way, in Dr. Murray`s interrogation with the police, he states he was aware that he was going to Klein and coming back, quote, "wasted."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: That was my discussion last night with the lawyer for Michael Jackson`s dermatologist, Garo Ghazarian, and he is Dr. Arnold Klein`s attorney.
It was a rather heated discussion last night. I appreciate you coming back again today.
GARO GHAZARIAN, ATTORNEY FOR JACKSON`S DERMATOLOGIST: I`m happy you asked me to come back.
PINSKY: Oh, I`m glad you were willing to. And here`s - here`s how - let`s frame our battle tonight.
PINSKY: You passionately defend your client. I have very intense feelings about this, as you see about the circumstance of my peers giving opiates to my patients, happens all the time. And so it really gets me very stirred up when patients with a history of addiction get addictive drugs and things are not - the table is not properly set, they`re not properly protected.
And we both agree that the biggest failing of the care of Michael Jackson was the fact his primary care doctor, the guy who was getting exorbitant fee every month to be his personalized primary care doctor did not pick up the damn phone and call the other doctors involved in the case.
GHAZARIAN: Well, my client did not even know that there was a primary care physician involved, let alone one living in the house. As far as your passionate stand on opiate use and abuse or prescription or overly prescribing by physicians, not only I agree with you that that is something that should not be tolerated, so does my client, Dr. Klein agrees with it, he really does.
PINSKY: Well, but he should have then, this is what gets me crazy, because I don`t think my peers, and Dr. Klein amongst them, doesn`t - don`t really appreciate what it means when you give somebody who was diagnosed with opiate addiction, treated in an inpatient setting that`s not a lifelong condition, that rest of his life he`s an opiate addict, re- exposing them to opiates and not taking that necessary precautions.
GHAZARIAN: Well, you know, as I`ve said last night after there were those -
PINSKY: I`m not saying that he should be in misery or sticking needles in his eye.
GHAZARIAN: No, no. I`m not talking about that.
GHAZARIAN: I wasn`t going to talk about that. As I said last night, after I did your show to those who said that, well, Dr. Drew ripped into you, but you held your own, I`m not - I`m not a physician.
PINSKY: I know, but I am.
PINSKY: You keep saying that.
GHAZARIAN: And - and despite the fact that you`re a physician, I think those who know me know that I know more than a thing or two about addiction. I have been there, done that, but it`s not that I have had the experience of addiction some 18 years ago.
I`ve spent the last 18 years, two of which with a heroin addict living in my house, a former professional football player, so I know all too well because having lived with that person on a daily basis -
PINSKY: You know they go to doctors and they have pains and they have this and that, and doctors willfully sabotage them.
GHAZARIAN: Well, some do, some don`t, but what people seem to just neglect, and I say this respectfully, Michael Jackson was addicted to propofol, first and foremost, beyond anything else. He was addicted to propofol, and my client has made multiple interventions in the past related to propofol.
PINSKY: On Michael.
GHAZARIAN: Oh, yes, on propofol issue. And it`s there. I am not at liberty to get into greater detail as far as his treatment, which is what frustrated me yesterday because of the HIPPA and all the other, you know, except the four months of medical records that I put out there.
You know, the medical records I think you would agree are a short memorialization of what occurred there. I think if you were to write down word for word for the three hours a patient is there, you probably have to write a novel for each.
PINSKY: Well, in internal medicine, you have to write pages. Because Medicare reviews every word and you`ve got have to have lengthy, lengthy documentation of everything that goes on. That`s internal medicine. I don`t know about dermatology.
GHAZARIAN: Well, I don`t know about internal medicine or dermatology. But I do know that Dr. Murray is an internist, and where are his medical records?
PINSKY: Egregious. Egregious.
And - and, by the way, more of that special care, that, "Oh, I was just there all the time. Why do I need records? I`m taking special care of my patient."
You and I agree that - that Murray`s care was outlandish, yes?
GHAZARIAN: Well, it - it was outlandish, and that`s why he`s on trial. You know, you - you do know that the DEA looked at my client extensively, the - the DA`s office looked at my client, the LAPD looked at my client.
PINSKY: Why? Why, if things are so -
GHAZARIAN: They looked at all the other doctors. You - you`re an intelligent man.
GHAZARIAN: There must be a reason why he`s not being prosecuted.
PINSKY: Yes. Why - there must be a reason they looked at him, though.
GHAZARIAN: Well, they looked at all the doctors. That`s - what do you think I do when I take on a case? I looked at all - I look at all the players. All the players, all the audience, everybody on the sideline, everybody on the field.
GHAZARIAN: You have to. You do your due diligence.
PINSKY: Yes. Yes.
GHAZARIAN: So - but, you know, I`ve done - I`ve done some - some looking into the last two years about who is my client, and I`ve said yesterday on some show - I don`t think it was yours - that, you know, he had done a two year-fellowship, a research and co-authored a book on addiction. He had interviewed hundreds of them.
And he is on record - if you go look him up, you will see he`s on record that he is anti - and he`s an FDA adviser now, and he is extremely anti this stuff.
PINSKY: Now, this - I got this - here is his list of Demerol exposures in - from March to April.
GHAZARIAN: But - but let`s talk about that -
PINSKY: If - if these had been any of my patients, any of my patients, if they had gotten this far, he should have airlifted him to me.
GHAZARIAN: You said that to me yesterday.
PINSKY: You`re in big trouble right here.
GHAZARIAN: You said - you said that to me yesterday.
PINSKY: Yes. Yes.
GHAZARIAN: But - but you - because of your expertise in addiction medicine, would you not agree that someone who has a higher tolerance for medication needs to be given a higher dose?
Now, let`s - let`s - addiction aside. Addiction - (INAUDIBLE) addiction aside.
PINSKY: Yes. Categorically.
PINSKY: And, even with addiction, I would say categorically, the case.
GHAZARIAN: OK. So then, at that point -
PINSKY: But, let me tell you, though, the - let me tell you the things that I hate is when I get a heroin addict with a needle embedded in his arm, who`s in excruciating pain and the surgeons go, "Hey, he wants opiates." So, who are we to give - I mean, the guy is in pain. Give him drugs. You interested in getting off - off your heroin? No. Give him the Demerol. Fine.
Now, Michael, may have been - they may have had that conversation. Michael may have said, you know what, doc? I don`t - I`m an addict. Just control my pain or fix my face. That may have been the conversation.
GHAZARIAN: The - I could tell you, that was not the conversation.
GHAZARIAN: I can tell you that was not the conversation.
PINSKY: That would have been fine with me, by the way, because the patient doesn`t want to do anything with his addiction. He wants his pain control. Fantastic. Do it, then.
GHAZARIAN: Well, but that was not the conversation.
PINSKY: Well then, he should have called an addiction medicine person. Where are the psychiatrists and the addiction medicine people in this?
GHAZARIAN: But, no, Dr. Drew. Again, respectfully -
PINSKY: Yes, sir.
GHAZARIAN: -- if you - if you are going to take it as a given that this man is addicted to Demerol, which is what - what the defense on Conrad Murray - in the Conrad Murray trial wants - wants everyone -
PINSKY: I`m not sure that`s true. I`m not sure that`s true.
GHAZARIAN: OK, I`m not sure it`s - I know it`s not true, and -
PINSKY: But - but he was exposed already.
GHAZARIAN: Let`s say - well, certainly he was exposed.
GHAZARIAN: But to suggest that he had a dependency of a recurring nature, Dr. Klein would have to inject him every four to six hours.
PINSKY: No, but you`re making my case for me. You did the same thing yesterday, which is I`m firmly of the opinion - so, look, insomnia is like saying fever. It`s a symptom.
PINSKY: It`s not a diagnosis, really, though. I mean, unless you ruled everything out.
GHAZARIAN: But does a dermatologist know you have insomnia when you`re there at midday for treatment?
PINSKY: No. No. But my point is, I`ve - and I`ve made this point all along, which is that Dr. Murray was treating drug withdrawal, not insomnia. And you could see, every time he gave him withdrawal medications, he`d get better.
And then he tried to - he took him from propofol, which does suppress a lot of withdrawal symptoms. My - my patients, when they overdose, end up on the ICU on propofol and a breathing machine, that withdrawal is smooth on the propofol.
GHAZARIAN: Well, you put in your mouth (ph). Obviously -
PINSKY: I`m - I`m just saying.
PINSKY: But - but - so propofol is suppressing the withdrawal.
Then he tries to get them off the propofol and the withdrawal for the profopol, and - and the Klonopin, which your doctor - your guy gave him, too. The Klonopin and the other benzodiazepines, and Restoril which - he was getting Restoril, Valium, Klonopin, Midazolam, Ativan, and he withdrew from all of that, too. So it`s the multiplicity of medicines here that -
GHAZARIAN: But the benzodiazepine, don`t you agree with me -
PINSKY: Worse. Worse.
GHAZARIAN: It`s worse. It doesn`t - it doesn`t treat the withdrawal, it masks it.
PINSKY: Oh, it does. It -
GHAZARIAN: It doesn`t - it doesn`t bring you out. It makes you all fine and well, and that`s -
PINSKY: You`re right. You`re - in a way, you`re right. That`s a complicated point.
But, yes, you`re right. And the fact is that he was having withdrawal from all of that stuff, too. And so, my point is - my point is -
GHAZARIAN: But all that stuff is not on my client`s watch.
PINSKY: Right. And that`s the - that`s the - that`s where you and I have absolute agreement, that - that there was egregious exposure, and Murray was the guy at the - at the center of the - of the hurricane. He knew what was going on, and he chose.
It`s in this report. This report here is the interrogation with Dr. Murray, and he says, well, I knew he was seeing Dr. Klein. He was seeing - he was going. He was getting a lot of meds. And he was seeing Dr. Metzger and getting a lot of meds, but Michael wanted to be private about that. What am I supposed to do?
What he`s supposed to do? That`s what a primary care doctor does. A cardiologist doesn`t know how to be a primary care doctor.
GHAZARIAN: Why do you think Dr. Klein is furious with Dr. Murray? Because he didn`t know his existence.
PINSKY: I - and I -
GHAZARIAN: Listen, he is furious about that, and has been for over two years.
PINSKY: I`m not - as - as sort of upset as I am about the list of opiates, I feel bad for Dr. Klein. I - he - he got ambushed here.
GHAZARIAN: Well, he didn`t just get ambushed. He - you know, he lost what - what many times has been referred to as his best friend. And I`ve seen evidence of this -
PINSKY: Yes, but that - you can`t do that. You cannot call a patient a best friend, especially a patient with addiction. Now you`re in outer space.
GHAZARIAN: Well, you know, that`s - that`s like saying that my uncle, who`s a physician, should not have anything to do with my care or my cousin`s -
PINSKY: He shouldn`t have anything to do with it. That`s the ethical thing to do. We`re trained carefully, and especially - especially on mental health issues.
I`m going to keep you. I`m going to keep you. Stay right here.
PINSKY: Mr. Ghazarian, thank you for subjecting yourself to this. And you made some excellent - interesting points tonight.
GHAZARIAN: Thank you.
PINSKY: Want to know more about Demerol, propofol, or the client of (ph) Conrad Murray or anything else - anything else we`ve been discussing here tonight, go to HLNtv.com/michaeljackson.
More with Mr. Ghazarian after the break. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GHAZARIAN: You guys have it all wrong -
GHAZARIAN: -- because my client didn`t have to see anything. My client is treating a - a patient for particular procedures - injections to the lip, injections under the eyelids.
Have you ever had a needle stuck under your eyelid? I - I beg to differ that you don`t need anything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: That was just a portion of my debate with Garo Ghazarian last night. He`s back with us again tonight, very kindly so.
And he`s whispered something in my ear that made this conversation more interesting. Do you want to tell a piece of what you just told me?
GHAZARIAN: Well, you know, talking about addiction is surreal to me, because I had my own battle with addiction some 18 years ago, which landed me on Skid Row in Los Angeles. And the climb back was - was very difficult. It was a day by day. And - and, for me, it was doubly troubling, because that was my third bout with homelessness because I immigrated from Beirut, Lebanon at the age of 16. I was homeless in - in America twice - once on the East Coast, once in Los Angeles.
And after I went to law school and - and I got my act together I -
PINSKY: I feel - I feel tremendously guilty now. (INAUDIBLE).
But - but let me just say - but let me just say, good move by you, counselor, well done. The only person who`ve done this to me recently was Nancy Grace, by the way, so you`re in good company.
GHAZARIAN: Oh, wonderful.
PINSKY: But - but understand this, and see this from my perspective, is that my patients, when they die today - let`s say you were my patient. If you were to die today, if your addiction were to resurface, God - God forbid, you would die at the hands of my peers. That`s the way it goes. That`s the way it happens.
Stuff like this, stuff like Dr. Klein probably appropriately gave him pain medicine - really, I`m not saying it was inappropriate. It was just that they didn`t plan for what it meant to the addict patient.
Let`s take a quick Facebook question. He`s - this is our "On Call" segment, usually, so I want to invite you to join me on this.
PINSKY: This one`s from Rick on Facebook. He writes, "I believe you said that Michael Jackson`s problem with insomnia was nonsense. Could you explain?"
And what I was saying there with - with that, Rick, is that - and I`ve said it too just a few minutes ago - was that primarily, what - the reason his inability to go to sleep was so profound and he could absorb so much medication is the fact is that was all drug withdrawal. Not necessarily opiate withdrawal, but the multiplicity of drugs, primarily benzodiazepine or propofol or something of the sedating class.
So, when he was off them, he would just go through the ceiling. He complained of being hot and cold on one side of his body. There were all kinds of reports of him having symptom complexes.
And, if you remember - and, by the way, Dr. Klein or somebody in his office was reducing the amount of Demerol at that time, too. So probably contributed to it.
GHAZARIAN: Well, I have - I have seen, in my - in my trials and tribulations, that if you are withdrawing from one substance, eventually your body will give out and you will go to sleep. And if you - if you`re withdrawing from multiple substances - uppers, downers, benzodiazepines, and opiates, it can go for days.
But - but, again it comes down to the right hand ought to know what the left is doing.
PINSKY: Yes. And that - and, to me - and, again, the most - there`s two - two things that are very disturbing. I`ve got to - I want to thank you for being here with me today, by the way.
GHAZARIAN: Thank you.
PINSKY: I`ve got to go out again. But there are two things that are terribly disturbing - doctors making patients with mental health issues friends. We can be friendly, not friends. That - that crosses boundaries.
And then, number two, somebody who claims to be a primary care person not doing primary care at all. When he was - when you`re doing cardiological care, it`s wasn`t so bad. The rest of it, bad.
GHAZARIAN: I can`t disagree.
PINSKY: Thank you, sir.
Go to HLNtv.com/michaeljackson for all the latest with this case. See what`s coming up next week as the trial nears the finish line.
Next, it was a 1960s experiment with results - it`s a famous experiment. The results were so shocking that it changed the way we perceived ourselves and evil. Has anything changed in the U.S. since then? Some answers, after the break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY (voice-over): Tonight, good versus evil. First up. Evil. You`ve Eli Roth`s movies horrifying works of fiction, but he`s talking to me about the reality of evil in society. As a physician, I`m explaining the causes, the effects, and the roots of evil in the brain. Do we all have the capacity for wickedness? The answer may shock you.
And then from evil to good. A young woman loses over 100 pounds and gains the world. In my medical practice, I`ve seen miracles of change like this, and you can do it. You can make massive, positive changes in your life. Bree Boyce proved it and shares her amazing story with me.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The experiment requires we continue.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Might be better than that.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s right. Continue.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 375. I think sometimes I (INAUDIBLE) get no answer. Can you check and see if he`s all right, please?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Please continue, please.
PINSKY (on-camera): In 1961, Stanley Milgram, a Yale psychology professor undertook what is probably one of the most famous American psychology experiments today to see if everyday Americans would blindly follow the cues of an authority figure and subject a painfully intense dose of voltage on innocent victims whom they didn`t know, frankly, lethal doses in some of these cases, they would keep going up and up until the subject would stop responding, suggesting they were dead.
And the answer was by that experiment, yes. That experiment was recently duplicated by Discovery Channel, with the Discovery Channel with the help of Eli Roth, actor, director, and host of "How Evil are You," a part of Discovery Channel`s curiosity series. So, Eli, my opening question to you, I think, is a simple one, which is do we all have a capacity for evil?
ELI ROTH, HOST, "HOW EVIL ARE YOU?", DISCONVERY CHANNEL: Yes. I think that evil as a thing doesn`t actually exist, I think, it`s your point of view, and most of the time when people are committing evil acts, lot of times they know they`re doing something evil, but they believe it`s for a greater good.
And in this case, if they felt that the responsibility was displaced on a third party like a scientist, then, they absolutely were more than willing to push the switches.
PINSKY: Well, I was watching some of your footage, and it reminded me that if I were sitting in that, what they do is they ask -- an authority figure asks them to teach somebody.
ROTH: Yes. The things, an experiment, and memories, in this different words (ph) like, you know, coffee cup. And when the person gets it wrong --
PINSKY: You electrify them.
ROTH: You electrify them. And you hear them scream.
PINSKY: You hear them scream as the electrification gets more and more intense, but I was thinking to myself, but part of why they do it, I suspect, is that they believe not only that they have to follow the authorities` direction, but the authority wouldn`t put them in a situation to harm somebody.
ROTH: That`s exactly it, and that`s what happens is you hear the other person screaming. I have a heart condition. Please stop. I want to get out of the experiment, and they turn to the, you know, the scientist, and they say, this guy says he has a heart condition, and they`re clearly compassionate, and the man says very calmly, the subject is in no danger.
The experiment requires you continue. And he goes, but he`s screaming in there. They go, well, the shocks might be painful, he`s in no danger. Please continue.
PINSKY: But to me, it shined a bright light on the issue which I think where we see evil kinds of act emerge. At least one core issue is when we don`t take the position of the other person. If you don`t appreciate what`s happening to somebody else, either because of authority tells us to disregard it or we believe they`re so unlike us that, you know, historically people have done that, or we just don`t have empathy. People can do bad things to people really easily.
ROTH: For sure. I mean, you look at any war. The first objective of that war is, you know, to win or you dehumanize the enemy.
ROTH: And any group, if there`s any conflict if you look at anything in the Middle East or any war that we`ve been involved in, they literally are made to look like they`re less than human and like something that has to be stopped, but when Hitler, you know, made, they would show images of Jews, images of rats. They dehumanize --
PINSKY: Moses comes down with the Ten Commandments, thou shall not kill, but those Canaanites over there, wipe them out.
PINSKY: God says do not kill.
ROTH: Yes. I mean, there are all sorts of things. I mean, you know -- and it doesn`t just go into killing. I mean, it`s all really a point of view. I mean, half the country thinks Republicans are evil, half thinks the Democrats are evil. It`s all which side of the coin you`re on.
PINSKY: Now Discovery Channel`s version of the Milgram experiment was similar to the original. They actually redid it, as I said, so except there was one very important detail, the voltage intensity that participants were asked to administer was different in this more modern version. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The heart of the test is this machine. The shocks are fake, but the participants don`t know that. In the original Milgram, the voltage ran from 15 to 450 volts, but one number became the turning point. 150 volts. In Milgram, at 150, a recorded voice began to scream for the experiment to stop.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 150 volts.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Answer.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s all. Get me out of here. (INAUDIBLE)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, in our test, that`s the moment of truth. After participants hear the man in the other room beg for mercy, will they flip the switch to 165 volts or will they refuse to continue?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 165 volts.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: So it`s a chilling thing to watch.
ROTH: Chilling is the word. And being in the room, I mean, I was there on the other side of that two way mirror, and I was trying to guess what everyone will do. I mean, of the 13 people, only one person said I won`t do it at all. So, 12 of them were like right up to 150, and then most people went past 150.
And you`re going, don`t do it, don`t do it, don`t do it, and they did it. And this one woman, I asked her, you know, I said do you watch, because I wanted to know about violent movies or video games, and obviously, look, and Milgram did thousands of people, we did 13. So, there`s no way to really know.
But I said do you watch horror movies? She said, no, no, no. I watch the cooking network. I watch classic movies. I said why would you do this? And she said, well, I grew up with a very strict father, and I was taught you never question authority. And all of these people, they`re all very good people and moral people and caring and considerate, but in authority, it was all but their relationship to authority.
PINSKY: And although, it exposes something very clear about human nature, it`s really not science.
ROTH: Yes. Not exactly. I mean, look, you can`t say that this is -- even Milgram`s experiment, you only use people from this particular area, but it does reveal fascinating behavior. I mean, for me, whether it`s one person or a thousand, watching these people go through this is terrifying.
PINSKY: You went beyond this in the particular Discovery Channel series, you went on and look at the functional MRIs of people and how their brains reflect negative thoughts or evil thoughts, and then you did genetic tests.
ROTH: Yes. I did a study. I put myself as the guinea pig to see if I am evil. I mean, there are scientists.
PINSKY: Look at it. Here it is. Here it is.
PINSKY: Some people, the question they ask, are there people some wired to be evil. And I do believe there`s good evidence a certain amount of this has a genetic base for real bad stuff, certain amount of evidence, not saying you`re one of them, but Discovery Channel put Eli Roth to the test. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROTH: With the help of this machine, Dr. Falon is going to get inside my head.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There are circuits in the brain. One part of the brain connects to another part of the brain. These circuits underlie behavior.
ROTH: I`m a little nervous. What if they find something truly horrendous? What if my urge to make extreme and horrific films masks some deeper and more terrible urge to do harm others? I`m inside that machine for two hours.
While I`m inside, I`m looking at a series of images. Some of them perfectly ordinary. Some of them terrifying. Images of disaster, cruelty, what are known as distracters. My brain visibly reacts to these distracters. When it does, the camera is watching.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: So, Eli, is that evil we just saw there? You`re different.
ROTH: Yes. I always knew I was a special child.
ROTH: No, it was fascinating to see them study, you know, my brain. You know, Dr. Falon, the scientist who`s doing this says that the same qualities that are in a sociopath and a serial killer, those are qualities we look for in a CEO.
You know, if there`s a CEO of a corporation, you want them to kill the competition and make tough decisions and be a strong leader, you know, a dictator or like a president. They have similar brain function to psychopaths, that someone that can turn off and kill another person.
PINSKY: I still say -- and again, just to reiterate what I said before the clip, there is a genetic component to this as well.
ROTH: For sure.
PINSKY: Did they test your genes?
ROTH: Oh, yes. They tested my DNA. They tested my blood. And you find out, you know, what it is, but I will say this, I don`t want to give away whether or not, you know, I have tendencies toward evil, or violent, aggressive behavior, but the guy has done thousands of brains, and he said my brain was very, very different from the average man.
PINSKY: Very different from --
(CROSSTALK) PINSKY: As long as it wasn`t too far off, you`ve given me a little bit of the creeps here, I`ve seen your films. Anyway, the fact is, though, the one thing where the rubber hits the road is empathy. If you worry about people having problematic behavior or those of us that are parents developing children with difficult behavior, empathy develops in relationships. Relationships are the source of our humanity, I think.
ROTH: However, there are people that cannot connect to other people but have empathy for a cause. I mean, look at the shooter in Oslo. That guy is shooting people in the face knowing it`s wrong, but he so believes in his manifesto that that`s what he`s empathetic and that`s terrifying.
PINSKY: Terrifying. I get kind of philosophical when I hear that kind of stuff, too.
PINSKY: Eli, thank you very much for joining us.
ROTH: Thank you. Always a pleasure.
PINSKY: Pleasure is mine. And "How Evil Are You?" premiers on Discovery this Sunday, October 30th. For Halloween, very nice, at 9:00 p.m.
Up next an overweight teen loses more than 100 pounds to win a beauty contest and control over her life. This is an inspiring story. So, stay with us.
And again, for more on the Conrad Murray trial, go to hlntv.com/michaeljackson, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. But for now, just stay with us.
BREE BOYCE, MISS SOUTH CAROLINA 2011: I would come home from school, sit on the couch for hours, watch TV, and snack all day long. I would drive to a fast food place, pick up, you know, any meal I wanted to, eat it, then go back an hour later, eat it again. Took me three years, and yes, it was a long and hard battle that I fought, but in the end, I`m happy, and I`m successful, and you learn from that journey.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: She went from an overweight high school student weighing 234 pounds to a slim beauty queen who now weighs in at 123. She was crowned this year`s Miss South Carolina. She also won the lifestyle and fitness award and travels the country inspiring kids with her message of hope.
If you have a dream, do not let others hold you back from it. Her name is Bree Boyce, and she is joining us tonight to tell us about her amazing three -- there you are with your crown on.
BOYCE: I know.
PINSKY: Miss South Carolina.
BOYCE: How are you?
PINSKY: I appreciate that. Very well. Thanks. Tell us your story. How did you get so far down, and then, what drove you back into let`s called it a recovery?
BOYCE: Well, I started whenever I was 17 years old. I had knee issues, and I went to the doctor, and basically, he told me that there was no injury. It was all from my weight, bearing down on my knees and handed me a handicap sticker at 17 years old. And I thought at that moment that was the most embarrassing time of my life, and I knew I had to do something to change it.
So, I immediately went out and I met with a nutritionist. I joined the gym, and I decided that I was going to do this forever, and it was going to be a lifestyle, not a diet, because, for so many times, I`ve failed on the up and down yo-yo diets. And I knew that this was something that I had to make a lifestyle.
So, I learned how to eat, and instead of thinking of food as a way to find peace and comfort, I saw food as a fuel source and a lot of times I tell the kids I speak to that our bodies are a lot like cars, and we fuel our cars with the right kind of fuel so they`ll run properly. Well, our bodies are the exact same way.
And that`s how I look at it. I get physical activity in every single day, and I make sure that I eat the right foods.
PINSKY: Now, Bree, you said something very interesting there. You said, at that point in your life when you why overweight, I want to preface this by saying, I don`t think enough is made of the emotional circumstances that motivate eating, particularly in young people.
And you said peace gave you -- excuse me -- food gave you peace and comfort, those were your words. What were you needing peace and comfort from?
BOYCE: I felt like if I had something that was fried and greasy and I got to go into my little corner or I was in my car eating those foods, I felt good about myself. I hid from the world.
PINSKY: Now, Bree, that`s not my point. Now, Bree, I`m going to interrupt you, because I know how food makes you feel better. I just did that a few minutes ago, I binged on some cake. I felt better. I felt then I had exchange (ph) spiral right after that, of course, but I felt good in the moment. My question was -- because I`m interested in those moments of change.
And so, I`d like to know if you`re comfortable telling me what was going on emotionally that you were eating to soothe and regulate, and then, how do you get out of that, because I have my own thoughts about that. I`m wondering if they`re the same as what you experienced
BOYCE: Yes. As a young teen, I didn`t take on different things as my friends did. I wouldn`t go to the mall and shop because I didn`t like the way my body looked, but yet, I continued to eat these foods. And these foods were making my body look the way that they did, and it made me feel bad about the way I felt and looked on the outside.
So, these foods were, in one way, making me feel good about myself, but they were making me feel even worse because the weight was just piling on as I was eating these foods.
PINSKY: You were stuck --
PINSKY: Yes. Stuck in a spiral.
BOYCE: I was very antisocial, yes.
PINSKY: Well, let me ask this. Now, a lot of patients that I`ve dealt who suddenly were able to lose weight and change and develop a lifestyle that`s completely different, often times that you mention the doctor visit was sort of a moment where you hit bottom. Also, they will often describe that they`re having like -- hanging around with new friends.
People that help them sort of see themselves through a new pair of glasses. Was anything like that going on on your life at that time? Where you were able to suddenly hear the message from the doctor or more see yourself more vividly as you really were?
BOYCE: Yes. My sister always encouraged me to be healthy and get physical activity. She was very active and ate the right foods. And then, when I heard the doctor tell me that the weight had to come off and I`d heard it from my sister and family for so long, I knew that I needed to take responsibility for myself and I needed to take others` advice.
So, she helped me exercising. She helped me learn new moves to do in the house, just turning on the music and dancing. That was a form of exercise that I got because I was embarrassed at first to go to the gym. But after I lost a few pounds, I did join a gym. I started off in the back of a zoomba class, and now, I`m at the front of the class.
PINSKY: If you (INAUDIBLE) your crown, you`re certainly going to make quite a splash, but let me just say. I understand you also won the Little Miss South Carolina Beauty Pageant when you were just six years old.
BOYCE: I did.
PINSKY: And so, my question, there you are. Look how cute you were, still are, for goodness sakes. My question is, I`ve had concerns about these childhood beauty pageants. Were you happy competing as a child or do you feel this sort of, that perhaps, these toddlers and tiara`s world contributed to what eventually happen with you.
BOYCE: I loved competing. I loved meeting new friends, but when I turned seven years old, I started to see that my body didn`t look like the other girls. So, I asked my mom and my dad to enroll me into a musical theater program in my hometown and to let me do my own things. So, my parents both agreed that if I wasn`t happy doing the pageants any more, then that was completely fine.
That wasn`t my thing, but my sister did continue to compete because she loved it. And so, I followed her. I was always the supportive sister. And I always secretly wanted to get back into it and get the crown, and whenever I saw that I did lose the weight and that the Miss America organization is the largest scholarship provider for young women in the United States, I wanted to continue my education, so I felt this was a great way to get back into pageantry, and a great system.
And it also allowed me to have a platform, which is to speak about my weight loss and just show others that anything is possible. You just have to put a little hard work into it and a lot of dedication.
PINSKY: I think that`s a great message. And I understand you go out and talk to young people about that as well. And you`re going to stay with us. We`re going to talk to Bree next about competing in the upcoming Miss America Pageant.
Now, again, I keep reminding you, nonstop updates and coverage of the Conrad Murray trial. You can head on over to hlntv.com/michaeljackson. And I`ll be back with more of Bree Boyce after this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOYCE: After my high school, I get out and I go to the local fast- food joint, ordered two, you know, burgers, a large French fries, large drink, go home. Two hours later, drive back somewhere and eat something unhealthy again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Welcome back. We were talking with Bree Boyce who was just crowned Miss South Carolina this year. And a few years ago, Bree was an overweight teen who was addicted to fatty junk food. She weighed in at 234 pounds. She was determined to turn her life around, particularly after she heard from a doctor that something was really going to happen medically if she didn`t take it seriously.
And she ultimately lost over 100 pounds. Bree is competing in the Miss America Beauty Pageant this January. Bree, how are you preparing for the pageant?
BOYCE: I`m preparing in every way that I can. I feel like I have been preparing since last January when I won my title to compete for Miss South Carolina. I wanted to go into Miss South Carolina already ready to compete for Miss America.
I`m working out every day. I`m eating healthy, just like I will continue to do for the rest of my life. I`m practicing my talent. I`m working on my interview skills, and I`m working on that poise and confidence that you have to have in evening gown.
PINSKY: Now, let me just ask one last question. I`m going to go at the same sort of line of question I was asking before the break, because there are a lot of young people out there that are having misery. They`re not happy for various reasons, and a lot of people come from (ph) destroyed families and economic stress these days and they eat to feel better.
Do you have a specific message on how to manage the emotional landscape of young people`s lives so they don`t turn to food?
BOYCE: For me, it was always having to have something in my hand. And so, whenever I talk to young kids, I tell them if that is the case with you, instead of grabbing potato chips, or cake, or ice cream, grab apple, grab carrot sticks, grab something that`s healthy for you. Learn about the foods that you`re fueling your body with.
And if you`re fueling it with the right foods, then you don`t have to worry about all the fried and greasy food and the processed food. I think processed foods are one of the biggest things that are happening to our young kids today. Since 1980, adult and childhood obesity has nearly tripled. And, I think that is one of the main reasons is processed foods.
PINSKY: I agree, Bree, and thank you. Good luck in the Miss America Pageant. I do -- I think it`s going to be -- I think you got your shoe in there. And again, great message, eat less, eat real foods, move more.
And I`ve got a few words here as I often do before we go. I get this chance to talk about things that trouble me, and I`ve been talking tonight a lot about prescription drugs with the Michael Jackson thing, with Michael Jackson`s dermatologist attorney. And it`s this drug epidemic of prescription drugs that is ruing hundreds of thousands of lives and literally killing somebody every minute in this country.
According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, more than seven million Americans abuse prescription medication. Most of those drugs are in the medicine cabinets of friends and family. This is the truth. Now, tomorrow is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. Pack up your unwanted or unused pills that the kids see every day and deal with them like they are something that needs special treatment which they are.
Take them to a collection point in your neighborhood on Saturday. They will be accepted with no questions asked. This is run by local law enforcement. So, let`s all start doing something to stop one of the biggest healthcare problems and social crisis of our time. Tomorrow, Saturday, National Take Back Day. Do that. We can get that stuff out of our house so our kids get the message this stuff is serious.
Thanks for watching, and we`ll see you next time.