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"God Loves Uganda" Premieres at Sundance; Investigating Lance; D.C. Preps for Inauguration; Armstrong Doped and Lied; Mona Lisa Goes to Space

Aired January 18, 2013 - 12:30   ET



SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: This is a film that many of you are going to be talking about. Take a listen.

All right, what you're watching these are scenes from "God Loves Uganda." That is what it's called. It's a powerful documentary about American evangelicals pushing for strict biblical law in the East African country of almost 35 million people.

It also spotlights the role of Uganda's Christian and political leaders in trying to eliminate what they call "sexual sin." The documentary was directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Roger Williams.

He's joining us from Park City, Utah, where "God Loves Uganda" has just made its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival.

Congratulations, first of all. Thank you for joining us. I want to talk about this because this is such a provocative, provocative film here.

You start off in the documentary, showing the good here, how these American pastors, these missionaries, they build schools, orphanages, hospitals, the things that Ugandans desperately need, but then they pay dearly for all this American generosity. How so?

ROGER ROSS WILLIAMS, DIRECTOR, "GOD LOVES UGANDA": You know, I don't want to say that all these evangelicals are in this -- are painted in a bad light. You know, there's a lot of amazing things that evangelicals are doing in America.

But there are some evangelicals who are preaching a message of hate and intolerance and I think it's important for Americans to examine where their money is going when they put money into the collection plate on Sunday.

MALVEAUX: So, Roger, explain to us what the documentary shows because there are some very shock ways that they demonize homosexuality. Give us the specifics.

WILLIAMS: Yes, the documentary shows some American evangelicals who are often extremists in America and are outside of the mainstream who are going to Uganda and, because of their -- because they are from America and they represent so much, they represent hope and they represent money and power and influence, they command the parliament in Uganda.

They -- Scott Lively went to Uganda, addressed the parliament for five hours on the threat of homosexuality. There are Americans there who are going there and preaching intolerance and hatred and not understanding that they're going into a culture that, when that message is accepted, that people sort of take the law into their own hands and it becomes very dangerous.

MALVEAUX: Roger, explain the details here. I mean, there are things in the documentary that are very shocking in terms of what they claim, if you are gay or involved in a same-sex relationship that happens to the community and to themselves.

What -- explain this to us. What did you see?

WILLIAMS: You know, every -- you know, in Uganda, gays, lesbians, trans-/bisexuals, they are often arrested and tortured in the name of religion.

And, you know, there is a law in Uganda that is a proposed law that is possibly going to be passed soon -- it's in front of the parliament -- that, you know, has imprisonment and possibly even the death penalty for second offenders for homosexuality.

This is all being pushed by religious leaders in Uganda who have close ties to Americans. There are huge rallies. I mean, there's -- the biggest pastor, Martin Ssempa, the biggest anti-gay pastor in Uganda, shows porn, gay porn, in church to get his parishioners worked up into a frenzy of hatred.

MALVEAUX: Why Uganda? Tell us why Uganda. Tell us why you picked Uganda?

WILLIAMS: Uganda is unique. Uganda has the youngest population on the planet. Median age is 15. Idi Amin outlawed evangelical Christianity.

And after Idi Amin fell, there was a vacuum and American evangelicals moved in and they built schools and hospitals and did a lot of great things for Uganda, but along with that came this message because they felt they were losing.

And a lot of people in my film talk about this, evangelicals. They felt they were losing the cultural war in America and that Africa offered this possibility and, for 30 years, they built an infrastructure there and so they have -- you know, Ugandans love what they have done for them, but they come with this message, too.

MALVEAUX: Roger, I understand that your life has been in danger as well. Tell us how.

WILLIAMS: I was out in Uganda. I'm a gay man and a bunch of the anti-gay pastors confronted me and, you know, I was scared.

And you know what? Me being there and I spent two-and-a-half years shooting this film and me being there is nothing compared to the activists who are on the ground fighting this battle every day there.

But I -- one of them threatened -- sent e-mails threatening me. And, you know, it's a little disconcerting. It's a little scary?

MALVEAUX: Did he actually threaten your life.

WILLIAMS: Yeah. Yes. Well, he said he would take care of me, whatever that means and he's one of the most vocal, one of the guys who actually wrote the anti-homosexuality bill in Uganda, so I was a little afraid.

But they decided that they would pray the gay away instead of hurting me. And they prayed over me a lot. You know, there -- and a lot of that message of praying the gay away comes straight out of the American playbook with some evangelicals who believe that gay people are sexually broken and they have to be cured.

MALVEAUX: So, Roger, real quickly here because we've got to go, but has there been any response from the evangelical community to your documentary or to what you have presented that is coming out of Uganda?

WILLIAMS: Well, you know, the evangelicals in my film -- you know, I tried to sort of focus on a cross-section of evangelicals who are really hateful and preaching hate and evangelicals who are there, some of them who are trying to do good things who are innocently spreading the word and doing what they feel is right in Uganda, so it's not all evangelicals who are bad and who are doing bad things here.

And I just want to be clear on that. But I have gotten some pretty harsh responses from some of the anti-gay pastors in Uganda.

MALVEAUX: All right.

WILLIAMS: So that's been interesting.

MALVEAUX: All right, Roger Williams. Thank you so much. Good to see you and, of course, a very provocative documentary and up for an award at Sundance, world premiere.

Thank you very much, Roger. Appreciate it.

Well, one man in the media heard that wraths of Armstrong more than most, David Walsh from "The Sunday Times." He was the first journalist to publicly accuse Armstrong of cheating.


DAVID WALSH, CHIEF SPORTS WRITER, "SUNDAY TIMES": He never showed any compassion during his years or any sense that it troubled him to destroy other people.

And if you ask the people involved in this story, which do you think was worse, Lance's doping or Lance's bullying? Everybody who was involved in this story would tell you his bullying.



LANCE ARMSTRONG, FORMER PROFESSIONAL CYCLIST: I don't want to accuse anybody else. I don't want to necessarily talk about anybody else. I made my decisions. They are my mistake and I am sitting here today to acknowledge and to say I'm sorry for that.


MALVEAUX: After years of denying he ever used performance enhancing drugs, Lance Armstrong finally coming clean, admitting to Oprah Winfrey in that interview that using testosterone, cortisone, human growth hormone, blood-enhancing hormones, as well as getting illegal blood transfusions.

David Walsh was one of the first journalists to investigate doping allegations against Armstrong. Armstrong sued Walsh's newspaper. Won a $1.5 million dollar settlement.

Well, today, CNN's Pedro Pinto asked Walsh if he feels like he's vindicated. Here's what he said.


WALSH: During that very first tour, I was convinced he was doping and then when I went and started asking questions and doing investigations, it was just layer upon layer of evidence.

Remarkable that people were so slow to tune into it. That's the bit, maybe, that I don't understand.

But, no, I don't feel any vindication, just satisfaction that the people who were telling the truth in the early days and their reward for telling the truth was nothing other than vilification.

PEDRO PINTO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The admission that we saw and heard, did it go far enough and, if it didn't, is it because he is worried about further criminal charges?

WALSH: No, I think he's protecting his former associates. I think that's why he didn't go far enough.

He didn't want to speak about Michele Ferrari. Well, he's going to have to.

He didn't speak about his team manager, Johan Bruyneel, who most people believe was central to the whole doping program on the U.S. Postal team.

And this is stuff he's going to have to deal with and, really, this interview shouldn't have taken place in the first instance with Oprah Winfrey.

This should have taken place with the world anti-doping body, the World Anti-Doping Agency or the United States Anti-Doping Agency. And he should have sat down with those guys and given them chapter and verse.

PINTO: What is the biggest punishment for Lance Armstrong?

WALSH: I think the greatest punishment is the loss of his reputation, the sense that -- you know, when I interviewed him in 1993, he was age 21. He was in his first tour and I really liked the guy because he had a drive that I thought was just commendable, admirable, likeable.

I mean, I had this sense of getting into the lift of the ground floor with a guy who was going up and, as a sports journalist, he excited me.

Now that guy wanted to be somebody more than anything else, single parent, you know, desperate to show I could come from this background and I could be somebody.

He now realizes he's a nobody or, worse, he's known to be the greatest cheat maybe that sport has ever known.



MALVEAUX: From William McKinley to Barack Obama, we have the film from 100 years of inaugurations in just a couple of minutes. Take a look.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, this is not carnival day in pumpkin center. It is the day of days in Washington, D.C.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The presidential --


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oath of office.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here comes the inaugural parade.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you prepared to take the oath of office as president of the United States?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Left hand on the Bible and raise your right hand.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Raise your right hand.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you will raise your right hand and repeat after me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Repeat after me. I William Jefferson Clinton do solemnly swear.



GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: I George Walker Bush do solemnly swear.

CARTER: Do solemnly swear.

JOHN F. KENNEDY, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: And I will faithfully execute the office.

RICHARD NIXON, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: That I will faithfully execute the office.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Execute the office of president of the United States, faithfully. Faithfully the president -- the office of president of the United States.

OBAMA: The office of president of the United States faithfully.

GEORGE H.W. BUSH, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: Will to the best of my ability.

BILL CLINTON, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: The best of my ability.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Eisenhower began his second term as leader, not only of America, but all free people.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Constitution of the United States.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson had the grief stricken widow with them, takes the presidential oath aboard the jet, which brings him together with the body of the late president back to Washington.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The flag flies at half staff and President Truman asks the full Roosevelt cabinet to remain in office.



OBAMA: So help me God.

CLINTON: So help me God.


NIXON: So help me God. GEORGE W. BUSH: So help me God.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The entire country's behind you. Feel the hope and patriotism.




ARMSTRONG: You are not worth the chair that you're sitting on with a statement like that, with a disease that touches everybody around the world. As a society, are we supposed to forgive and forgot and let people get back to their job? Absolutely. I'm not sure I will ever forgive you for that statement.


MALVEAUX: Wow. For the first time, Lance Armstrong is not denying a thing. Did he shoot up himself with illegal drugs? Yes. Did he lie about it? Yes. Could he win so many championships without cheating? No. Listen to Lance Armstrong tell Oprah Winfrey how he never got caught.


OPRAH WINFREY, TALK SHOW HOST: Were you afraid of getting caught?

ARMSTRONG: No. Drug testing has changed. It's evolved.

WINFREY: Uh-huh.

ARMSTRONG: In the old days they tested at the races. They didn't come to your house. They didn't come to your training camps. They tested you at the race. That's shifted a lot. So now the emphasis of the testing, which is right --


ARMSTRONG: Is in out of competition testing.

WINFREY: Right. And in 1999, there wasn't even a test for EPO.

ARMSTRONG: None. And there was no testing out of competition. Well, they may have -- theoretically there may have been, but they never came. And for most of my career, there wasn't that much of that. So two things changed this --

WINFREY: That much of what? ARMSTRONG: There wasn't that much out of competition testing.

WINFREY: OK. Uh-huh.

ARMSTRONG: So you're not going to get caught.

WINFREY: Uh-huh.

ARMSTRONG: You know? Because you're clean at the races.


MALVEAUX: Joining me now, Dave Zirin. He is the sports editor for "The Nation." Writes his own column at

Dave, good to see you.

We all watched this Oprah Winfrey interview and one of the things that he seemed to say is that he gamed the system and he gamed it successfully. And then it kind of caught up with him. Do you get a sense from this interview that he's doing it because inevitably he was just going to be called out and he was going to be found guilty to begin with?

DAVE ZIRIN, "THE NATION" MAGAZINE: Yes. I have never seen such a transactional confession interview in my life. Another person said this to me as we were watching it together, said that it was less a confession and more a long justification. And that's absolutely not what Lance Armstrong needed to do yesterday. In many respects, it was the worst of both worlds because Lance Armstrong needed to show the United States Anti Drug Agency that he was ready to play ball, that he was ready to tell the truth, that he was going to validate their years of research, their years of investigation and their millions of federal tax dollars that were spent to build a case against him. And he also wanted to be able to rebuild his public image. Yet he did neither of those things.

Instead, he challenged the heart of the Anti Doping Agency's report, which was that he actually led and facilitated the use on his cycling team. He said absolutely not for that question, which really drives a stake into the heart of what USADA wanted to see him do.

And then the second part of that was even worse because he admitted to bullying. He seemed callous. He seemed reptilian. I mean it was the sort of thing where anybody who tuned in because they wanted to see contrition, remorse, I mean, and let's face it, I don't think people should have to do the contrition kabuki theater if they don't want to, but you don't call up Oprah Winfrey for the interview unless you're going to do an Oprah Winfrey interview.

MALVEAUX: So, what happens now? I mean does he stand a chance of ever competing? Does he stand a chance, in your mind, of ever rehabilitating himself, his image or his career in the sports world?

ZIRIN: Well, let's take the competition piece first. I mean USADA has a lifetime ban on him. The condition for that being removed is him testifying under oath to USADA and being willing to name names of corrupt officials or corrupt other cyclists. He made it very clear with Oprah Winfrey that that's not something he was going to do. And one thing Lance Armstrong is, as we well know, is stubborn.

About rehabilitating his image, it's hard to imagine how he does that. I mean we tend to be a forgiving country when it comes to scandal and giving people second acts in American life, but there's always that period where they need to put all their cards out on the table. And that is something that, as of last night, he certainly did not look like he was ready to do.

MALVEAUX: Dave, what are you going to be looking for in the second part of Oprah Winfrey's interview?

ZIRIN: I mean, honestly, I'm going to look to see if the facade cracks a little bit. I mean the steely resolve with which he faced off Oprah Winfrey, it made me feel like they were trying to race up the Pyrenees against each other or something. And yet he's not on the Pyrenees. He's on Oprah's turf. And it's far more difficult to escape Oprah's couch than maybe it is escaping other riders when you go down a hill at 70 miles an hour. I need to see, and I think a lot of people need to see, that he gets that he hurt other people in this process and he takes responsibility for that.

MALVEAUX: All right, we'll be watching. Dave Zirin, thank you very much. Appreciate it.

Got to take a look at this amazing video. This is out of Australia. It is a 13-foot great white shark surrounding a boat of fishermen. We're going to tell you how long the sharks circled them and how they reacted.


MALVEAUX: A frightening moment for a Russian firefighter. He was trying to reach people inside a burning building when a chunk of snow fell from the roof, almost knocking him off the ladder. You see it there. He managed to hang on until another firefighter helped him up. Well, we are happy to report the firefighters went on to rescue a child trapped inside that building and authorities say everybody got out OK.

And the Mona Lisa went on an outer space trip. Yes, that's right. Achieving a scientific first. NASA sent a laser beam of the iconic painting 240,000 miles into space. It was picked up by a manmade satellite orbiting the moon. By using lasers, NASA says it's on the verge of speeding up all data delivery around the solar system.

Two fishermen in Australia had a very close encounter with a great white. Watch this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, my God. He's standing to get a bit more --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, that was -- that was close. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can we start the engine --


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And just have that running.


MALVEAUX: Thirteen-foot shark nudged the small fishing boat off Victoria's southwest coast. Well, the men were actually out fishing for smaller sharks just a mile off shore when the great white put his nose on the engine. The shark circled their boat for 40 minutes. And if you're wondering what the fishermen decided to do about it. Well, they simply powered up the motor, took off when they'd had enough.