CNN CNN


 

Return to Transcripts main page

STARTING POINT WITH SOLEDAD O'BRIEN

New Leader of the Catholic Church; New York Gunman Dead; Medicating Children for Higher Grades; Michelle Obama in "Vogue" Again

Aired March 14, 2013 - 08:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


SOLEDAD O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: Along with cardinal who's elected him. And on Saturday, he will meet for the first time with world media. And on Tuesday, the big moment, the installation mass. As many as 200 foreign delegations expected to be on hand. The emotions surrounding the announcement of Pope Francis, filling over from Vatican City all around the world, including, of course, his home country of Argentina. Shasta Darlington joins us with reaction. Good morning.

SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Soledad. That's right. That's right, it really did take Argentina and Buenos Aires by surprise. When the announcement was first made, no one was even hanging out in front cathedral behind me, because there were no expectations it could possibly be Bergoglio.

When of course the announcement was made, hundreds of people came flooding in here to Plaza he Mayo to celebrate the first Latin American pope and the first Argentine pope. It was almost like a soccer game with people jumping up and down, singing, shaking flags.

And there's a lot of excitement about this also, because this is somebody who people here view as a real champion of the poor. Not only helped the poor, but lived that life. He lived in a small apartment right up here, in fact, on the third floor. Instead of the official archbishop's residence, cooked his own meals, took the bus and talking to people around here, he also greeted the homeless on the way to buy his newspaper. A real man of the poor, Soledad.

O'BRIEN: Shasta Darlington for us. It's been so interesting. Thank you, Shasta. So interesting to see the reaction, but certainly I mean this is a big step in the sense of the old world versus the new world.

MSGR. RICK HILGARTNER, US CONFERENCE OF CATHOLIC BISHOPS: One of the things hasn't been pointed out a whole lot yet, He wasn't ordained a priest until 1969.

O'BRIEN: He was a deacon first.

HILGARTNER: Well, they're always a deacon first.

O'BREIN: But partly because he felt like he wasn't ready to be a priest I understood.

HILGARTNER: Part of the Jesuit formation would have been a longer period of time. He wasn't ordained until long after the second Vatican council concluded. His service as a priest has always been in the church after Vatican II.

O'BRIEN: So, explain that for those who aren't Catholics, even those who are Catholics but badly read in Catholic doctrine. Myself among them. What is the significance of Vatican II?

HILGARTNER: It called for renewal of the church on every level. The most obvious changes would have been in some of the structure of governance that led to a new code of canon law. Changes in the mass and way we pray is probably the most overt sign of what happened at Vatican II.

BISHOP DAVID O'CONNELL, TRENTON NEW JERSEY: The conversation was different after the second Vatican council. The traditions, the perceived rigidity of the church, gave way when pope John XXIII announced the council. He talked about the aggiornamento (ph) the opening of the windows, and letting in the fresh air. This is was really our first kind of foray into the modern world and trying to adapt the church and give the church some sense of that. That's the Vatican council spirit that people talk about. And as monsignor indicated, this pope was ordained a priest lived his priesthood in the post Vatican era, as opposed to some of the other popes.

O'BRIEN: Explains and will highlight a very different mind-set as well. We'll get to John with an update of other stories, besides the pope.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Thanks, Soledad.

We do have some new information just in to CNN about the shooting spree in a small town in upstate New York. We are now being told that the suspect, Curt Myers is dead. CNN national correspondent, Deb Feyerick is live on the scene in Herkimer County. Morning, Deb.

DEB FEYERICK, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, John. Good morning, Soledad.

We can tall you that Police and FBI and S.W.A.T. teams made entry at about 8:00 this morning. Curt Myers didn't pick the building randomly. Just down the road from me. According to one police officer, he was prepared. He was waiting in ambush as the teams made into the building. They sent in an FBI canine dog, and Curt Myers opened fire, killing that dog. Agents returned their own fire, killing Curt Myers.

Entry was made and over in a couple of moments, we are told that the suspect, the man who killed four people and who now we believe was waiting in ambush for a police officers, that he is now dead. And so this, again, over, a lot of tension was here in Herkemier County as the police were waiting him out. They had not spoken to him in more than 15 hours, and they thought well maybe when there was an exchange of fire yesterday, that maybe he was wounded, but he wasn't. He was laying in wait. Police got him first, John.

BERMAN: Wow, Deborah Feyerick, for us. Moments of extreme tension this morning in Herkimer County. Our thanks to you. Other news now, TSA administrator John Pistole is expecting to defend his decision to allow small knives on planes. When he testifies today before the House homeland security committee earlier this week, he said he was sticking with the plan, which is set to take affect next month designed to reduce waiting time at airport security checkpoints. Three major carriers, Delta, American, and U.S. Airways have come out against the plan along with unions representing pilots and flight attendants.

A live look now. No live look, well, this morning or today at the Gaylord resort in National Harbor, Maryland, it is where conservatives will gather for the start of the annual CPAC convention. Among today's featured speakers, Senators Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, and Tim Scott, along with Texas Goernor Rick Perry, Mitt Romnay, Paul Ryan, Ted Cruz, Sarah Palin, Donald Trump, and the NRA's Wayne LaPierre, are all set to appear at CPAC this year. Some people who will not appear? Chris Christie and Bob McDonnell of Virginia.

Other political news. Florida lieutenant governor is getting caught up in a corruption scandal at a veteran's charity. Jennifer Carroll stepped down just a day after answering questions investigators about her consulting role in the charity, The Allied Veterans of the World. Carroll was not among the 57 people charged with racketeering and money laundering.

Police are investigating allegations of physical abuse at this California preschool. A former teacher is accused of duct taping two- year-old girl's ankles and wrists because she wouldn't sleep during naptime. I can't believe I'm saying this.

O'BRIEN: That will relax her, to make her sleep. That's insane.

BERMAN: If this isn't bad enough, the teacher apparently took a picture of this and showed it to coworkers. One of them was the child's mother, who contacted authorities. Also in California, a daycare teacher is being accused of drugging toddlers with over the counter sleep aides. Police say a coworker saw her putting pills in little white cups prepared for the kids. Parents, as you can imagine, were outraged when they found out.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I would never picture anybody doing to this to any kid.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you think about somebody doing this?

BIANCA FLORES, CHILD IN DAYCARE: Sickening. Sick to my stomach. I want to throw up. I just keep my kids home. I work for a daycare too. It's hard.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BERMAN: Wow. The teacher was caught before any of the one or two- year-olds had a chance to take the sleeping aides. She is currently behind bars, charged with felony endangerment. O'BRIEN: : Who gives a 1-year-old sleeping pills? Sleeping aids, whatever you want to call them? They can't even take pills at that age. That's insane. So insane. That's the crazy moment.

O'CONNELL: The person's a teacher, they know they're going to be dealing with youngsters and they are lively and wiry.

O'BRIEN: Clearly the wrong field if you can't handle.

O'CONNELL: Absolutely

BERMAN: Terrifying to hear as a parent.

(CROSSTALK)

O'BRIEN: Oh, my gosh. The crazy segment today.

Up next, a secret among many parents. A version of this, right? Giving their kids medication they may not need in the hopes of making them smarter or more focused. WE'll tell you what a new report says about this disturbing practice. That is right after this short break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

O'BRIEN: Welcome back. Have you ever given your child prescription meds to sharpen them up, give them an edge at school? I know you're laughing, but it sounds bizarre, but there actually is a name for the parents who that. It's called neuro-enhancement. And there is a new report out that says not only is it illegal, but just wrong. Senior medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen. Joins us this morning.

I was surprised that parents would do this, but this report says it is not all that unusual?

ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Right, this is a group of pediatric doctors who say we're seeing this way too much. Parents are coming to us, asking us to prescribe drugs for ADHD, when the child doesn't have ADHD. The parents want them more focused so they can go from getting Bs to getting As.

So this group of neurologists says it has to stop and published a position paper. Here's part of the proof they used to show this is happening, they said, look, let's take a look at ADHD diagnoses. Those have gone up 21 percent over a period of time, but prescriptions for ADHD medicines have gone up 46 percent. So you don't have to be a mathematician to figure out what's going here, why do we have so many kids taking ADHD drugs when they don't have ADHD? So these neurologists are saying it stops here. They are reaching out to parents to say don't ask for them, and to doctors to say don't prescribe them.

O'BRIEN: Some of the parents who are doing this believe that either their child hasn't been diagnosed or even if they haven't been diagnosed that they are exhibiting the traits. Doesn't matter if you have ADHD, if you are acting as if you have ADHD, wouldn't the medicine be a good thing? COHEN: No. You either have ADHD or you don't have ADHD. Just because when your child -- my child does this. Sits around doing homework. Writing, but then she stares off to the sky. That doesn't mean she has ADHD, that just means she isn't focusing at that particular time. I won't drug my child because she is staring off into space for a few minutes, or because she got a B instead of an A.

The reason why is because these drugs have side effects. It's not like giving your children a piece of candy. Side effects can include things like they can get irritable, insomnia, lose appetite. Some kids lose a lot of weight. I have seen this first hand. And some kids, a relatively small number, get heart arrhythmias. Don't want to give a child a drug unless they have the disease, and you don't want to convince your doctor they have it sometimes, unfortunately, that works. You have to make sure the doctor does a thoughtful job of assessing whether or not they have it.

O'BRIEN: Right, I mean they're children taking powerful drugs. Elizabeth Cohen, thank you.

First lady Michelle Obama gracing the cover of "Vogue" for an unprecedented second time. WE'llt ell you what she reveals about her marriage to the president in the issude, that's coming up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BERMAN: Welcome back, everyone.

A couple of stories we're following this morning. The Motor City is facing a bumpy road in the coming years. Michigan Governor Rick Snyder is expected to declare a financial state of emergency in Detroit. Sources tell CNN he will recommend attorney from Washington take over as emergency manager. Snyder's announcement is expected to come this afternoon.

So this is probably not the way these college students expected to spend their spring break. This week police in Miramar Beach, Florida arrested 32 students at a house party. The charge underage drinking; the house they are partying was just completely trashed. Along with a night behind bars, the arrest could have more lasting impact police say that could affect some students' scholarship. Look at that in chains. Wow.

O'BRIEN: That's a rarity. Right I mean, usually that what happens in the spring break that everybody turns their head and let's it go.

BERMAN: A pretty aggressive arrest right there.

O'BRIEN: Really. We are very much sorry.

The First Lady, Michelle Obama is absolutely everywhere these days from late night talk shows to the academy awards, and come April, she'll be on newsstands everywhere too, becoming the first American First Lady to grace the glossy cover of "Vogue" magazine twice.

CNN's Alina Cho got a first peek at the glamorous photos and stories too.

ALINA CHO, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hey there good morning Soledad, good morning everybody. You know "Vogue," is often called the bible of fashion but it can get political too. Over the years it has featured First Lady after First Lady, but never before, as Soledad mentioned, has "Vogue" ever featured an American First Lady twice on its cover, until now.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHO (voice over): Second term, second cover. First Lady Michelle Obama in "Vogue" again.

JONATHAN VAN METER, VOGUE COORDINATING EDITOR: There are something so groundbreakingly modern about the Obamas, you know they are the first black President and First Lady. And you know Anna Wintour of "Vogue" is crazy about them.

CHO: "Vogue's" powerful editor-in-chief is a massive Obama fund- raiser, once rumored to be the next U.S. ambassador to the U.K. So it's her friend, the First Lady, appearing on "Vogue's" April cover wearing a sleeveless dress by Reid Crackoff.

Yes that Reid Crackoff the same designer Mrs. Obama chose for the inauguration. Here she is in Michael Kors. But writer Jonathan Van Meter spoke to both of them, the First Lady and the President.

METER: Them as a couple, their marriage, their children, how they live in the White House, how they deal with the bubble.

CHO: What struck him?

METER: They are just so sweet with each other, there's a lot of affection. And -- and -- if -- if there is -- if there's any married couple to whom the phrase, "they finish each other's sentences" applies, it's them.

CHO: Of their marriage, the President says "I think it would be a mistake to think that my wife when I walk in the door, is hey, honey, how was your day, let me give you a neck rub. I think it's much more. We're a team." Of his clothes, she jokes "This is the man who still boasts about this khaki pair of pants I've had since I was 20. And I'm like you don't want to brag about that."

METER: She very effortlessly tells a story that leads to a punch-line that can crack you up. And what I love is that sometimes she and I weren't finished laughing and he was done and ready to move on, the President. And she would sort of look at me and keep laughing with me, like I just -- I just love that spirit in her that that jovial spirit that -- that really surprised me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CHO: Just a phenomenal photo shoot in "Vogue" for the April issue. The President and First Lady by the way also pushed back on that notion that they are antisocial in Washington. The First Lady said, "You know when you get a minute, you want that extra energy to go to your 14 and 11-year-old." The President said Sasha and Malia --

(CROSSTALK)

CHO: -- that's right -- the President said Sasha and Malia actually want to spend less time with them these days. You know that age, right, when that happens.

O'BRIEN: Yes.

CHO: And so the President said, who knows? Maybe you will see us out in the clubs. But you know just a little inside, behind the scenes, great stuff that I got from this writer was that he said you know when he got to the White House, one of the staffers actually said to him, you know, this part of the White House has never been so completely taken over by a photo shoot.

But you know that's the way "Vogue" works.

O'BRIEN: Right.

CHO: Especially Annie Leibowitz (ph) in this and -- and one thing because you love music, Soledad. The music that was playing in the background at that photo shoot --

O'BRIEN: Right I think the music, right, that last everybody.

CHO: That's right, was the Black Eyed Peas. "Where is the love? Where is the love?"

BERMAN: That was the Black Eye Peas.

O'BRIEN: I love that, I like the cover shot. Probably because her arms are just --

CHO: Famous.

O'BRIEN: Famous and fabulous.

CHO: Yes.

O'BRIEN: But the -- the gown is so beautiful. The Michael Kors gown.

CHO: The Michael Kors gown and that was something she chose you know to pair a sweater with a ball skirt like that and that's sort of her signature style.

O'BRIEN: Yes that is absolutely fabulous.

All right, "End Point" is up next. We're back in a moment.

Alina, thank you.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

O'BRIEN: Welcome back. Just in to CNN from our Barbara Starr at the Pentagon. General Joseph Dunford has sent a personal e-mail to his top commanders today. He's warning them of new risks of attack after rising tensions between NATO and Afghan President Hamid Karzai. Dunford told commanders that Karzai's recent statements could quote, "Become a catalyst for some to lash out against our forces" and that Karzai quote, "May also issue orders that put our forces at risk."

The ISAF telling CNN, that the e-mail, is not a formal threat advisory, which in of itself is kind of remarkable right? I mean what he is saying privately in this e-mail is certainly very worrisome. We're going to continue to follow that. That comes from Barbara Starr at the Pentagon for us.

Time to get to "End Point". So much to talk about really with this being the first full day for Pope Francis. What do we see today? Not, I don't mean by the rundown of events. What do you think we see today in terms of him framing what the rest of his tenure will be?

O'CONNELL: I think he's taking this in stride. He's doing what he needs to do, but he wants to reveal himself, little by little, to the world and let them see he's an authentic person. What you see is what you get.

O'BRIEN: He is not young. We were just talking about his age. He is 76 years old, which means realistically.

O'CONNELL: Two years younger than Pope Benedict was when he was elected.

O'BRIEN: So realistically, you could be back again. And now there's precedent set of stepping down when you physically don't necessarily feel able to move on. Is that good for the church or bad for the church?

HILGARTNER: Could be. It might set up the possibility of the cardinals coming together more frequently and having the kind of conversations that they had all last week during the congregation.

I think one of the key things is because the cardinals don't campaign for this, he didn't have a platform, there is all the speculation about what's he going to do as a reformer, or a caretaker? He probably doesn't know yet.

O'BRIEN: Everyone looks for clues.

HILGARTNER: Yes.

O'BRIEN: He picked the name Francis, what does that mean? He wore black today and not the papal white. What does that mean? He told the cardinals hang on, wait for a minute while I address the crowd. What does that mean? Everybody examining that.

O'CONNELL: He's going to roll it out and roll it out in his own good time.

O'BRIEN: Interesting.

You know what's going to be, I think fascinating as well as he moves forward. I think for the American church, there are some things people think of as moving forward.

I used to have this conversation -- like my parents are both very devout. We'd have this conversation a lot. My mother would say like the church's job is not a popularity contest. It's not to move. People are voting this way. Change all the doctrine.

And yet at the same time I think that is a challenge for the American church. How do you both keep up with what people consider to be modern times, but keep to a doctrine that is obviously based in the way past, in history?

O'CONNELL: Well, I have to tell you what's official. This is an issue. Because people do have it in their minds that this is a democracy and that polls are the things that make the decisions. It's not. We're dealing with what we call eternal truths. The eternal truths of our faith and they don't really change that much.

And as we said earlier in the program, the key is the way that you deliver the message. And I think that's what people are going to be looking for in the next few years with this Holy Father.

O'BRIEN: And I also think, what is going to endear him to the audience or push the audience away. Right, I mean John Paul II, what people loved about him was the delivery of that message in a personal way.

HILGARTNER: And the ability to engage the culture and have the conversations I think is the key.

O'CONNELL: Yes, he was -- Pope John Paul was 59 --

O'BRIEN. Right, right.

O'CONNELL: When he was only two years older than me, when he became the Pope. And we watched him become a grandfather. Benedict walked out to the world stage as a grandfather. And it's true of this man. We're going to be looking to him for wisdom. The wisdom that's one of many years of experience in the church.

CHRIS FRATES, JOURNALIST, "NATIONAL JOURNAL": He had that warmness immediately. As soon as he stepped out, it's a smile. It was his smile. It felt like --

HILGARTNER: He looked like he didn't know what to do.

O'BRIEN: And people loved him for that.

FRATES: And people loved him for that.

O'BRIEN: All right. Coming up tomorrow on STARTING POINT, we're going to talk to Newt Gingrich -- that's always an interesting conversation. "CNN NEWSROOM" with Carol Costello begins right now. We'll see you back here tomorrow morning.