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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Food Network Cancels Paul Deen's Show; U.S. Federal Prosecutors File Criminal Complaint Against Edward Snowden; Former Leader Of "Gay Cure" Ministry Speaks Out; What's On The Tape?; George Zimmerman Trial; Two Killed In Severe Flooding In Western Canada; Sarah Murnaghan Wakes Up From Induced Coma; Autopsy Confirms Gandolfinia Died Of Heart Attack
Aired June 21, 2013 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Erin, thanks very much.
Good evening, everyone. A very busy night tonight, breaking news in the Edward Snowden link case. He is being charged with espionage.
Also, Southern-fried cooking show host, Paula Deen, is dump by the food network after making a video apology, though, exactly what she was apologizing for remains unclear.
And tonight, I interview Alan chambers, the president of the longest running ex-gay group, Exodus international who made headlines yesterday for apologizing for his group's past actions and arguments. Now, the organization is shutting down. Tonight, he gives the first interview since going public with that apology, so we have a lot to get to.
But we begin with breaking news on Edward Snowden who is believed to be hiding somewhere in Hong Kong. He is now officially an alleged spy. The criminal complaint unseal tonight in the federal eastern district court of Virginia charging him with the following, theft of government property, unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communication on classified intelligence with an unauthorized person. Now, two of those counts falling under the federal espionage act. The process of trying to bring him back from Hong Kong, now officially underway. We are going to have more on this ahead tonight.
But, Paula Deen right now and more breaking news.
Just minutes ago, she reacted to losing her food TV cooking show in the Food Network. In a statement she says and I quote "I would like to thank the Food Network for 11 great years." She goes on. Quote "because of the gift the Food Network game me, I have had the pleasure of being allowed to be in so much homes across the country and meeting people who have shared with me the most touching and personal stories." She adds "again, this would not be possible without the Food Network. Thank you again. Love and best dishes to all of you, all."
That statement came shortly after the Food network cut ties with her in a very tore statement. They said and I quote, "Food Network will not renew Paula Deen's contact when it expires at the end of this month."
Controversy has been building since Wednesday when details became public of a deposition she gave in a sexual and rational harassment lawsuit being brought by a former manager of a restaurant that she and her brother owned.
In the transcript of the preceding obtained by "the Huffington Post," Deen admits to using the "n" word. She also admits to saying she wanted her brother to have a so-called plantation style wedding featuring African-Americans waiters dressed in white jackets. She denied there was any racial angle there and denied using the "n" word to described those waiters which the lawsuit alleges. And that said after backing out of a television appearance this morning on the today show, she first put an edited apology online this more complete version later.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PAULA DEEN, COOKING SHOW HOST: You all, I'm Paula Deen. I was invited this morning to speak with Matt Lauer about a subject that's been very hurtful for a lot of people. And Matt, I have to say, I was physically not able this morning.
The pain has been tremendous that I have caused to myself and to others, and so I'm taking this opportunity now that I pulled myself together and am able to speak to offer an apology to those who I have hurt.
I want people to understand that my family and I are not the kind of people that the press is wanting to say we are. I've spent the best of 24 years to help myself and others. Your color of your skin, your religion, your sexual preference does not matter to me, but it's what is in the heart, what is in the heart, and my family and I try to live by that.
And I am here to say I am so sorry. I was wrong. Yes, I worked hard and I've made mistakes, but that is no excuse. And I offer my sincere apology to those who I have hurt and I hope that you forgive me because this comes from the deepest part of my heart, and I will continue to work and continue to do good things for good people.
Thank you for listening.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: This controversy is the latest and most serious for Paula Deen. It is not, however, the first.
DEEN: Please use butter because it's so much better than the margarine.
COOPER (voice-over): She is one of the most recognizable and popular food personalities in America. The Georgian native is known for her greasy, buttery, sugary recipes, what made her a star and in recent years, a target.
DEEN: Look at all the butter in this kitchen.
COOPER: Deen, who started her career as a cater to support her family, built a south earn food empire opening her first restaurant in 1991 in Savannah. She went on published numerous cook books, buy monthly magazines, opened more restaurants, and in 2002 began hosting her own television show on the Food Network called "Paula's Home Cooking."
DEEN: I'm going to smear the mayonnaises on that piece of bread.
COOPER: But as Deen's popularity grew, so did controversy. Critics say she was promoting an unhealthy lifestyle while at the same time, profiting off endorsement deals with companies like Smith Field ham and Philadelphia cream cheese.
Then, in 2012, more controversy. Deen publicly announced she had type-2 diabetes, a condition she knew about for three years before going public. She made her announcement on "the Today show".
DEEN: I'm here today to let the world know that it is not a death sentence.
COOPER: Her critics mutely pounced questioning why she waited so long to make the announcement while continuing to push her high-fat recipes. And the criticism only grew louder when she tied her revelation to a new lucrative partnership with a company that makes diabetes medication.
DEEN: I'm working along with a very reputable pharmaceutical company. I'm working on a new program called diabetes in a new light. You can go to our Web site. I'm going to be there for you and help you manage every day of your life with the S.
COOPER: Deen's defender say she showed bravely coming forward with her condition and her career was relatively untouched. Whether she can out last this latest controversy remains to be seen.
COOPER: We'll dig deeper into the reaction what Paula Deen is amidst of saying and what she is accused of saying, making sure to keep the distinction between the two (INAUDIBLE).
But joining us by phone is her former publicist Nancy Assuncao.
Thanks very much for being with us. You were Paula Deen's publicist for six years. Did you hear her use racial slurs?
NANCY ASSUNCAO, FORMER PAULA DEEN PUBLICIST (via phone): No, I have not. You know, I worked with Paula for close to six years. We, on the average traveled two weeks out of the month with her, big group of us. She has a very notorious for her entourage and I've to tell you, I have stayed at her home. She's stayed at my home. I've never heard her talk like that. COOPER: In the deposition she does talk about using the "n" word perhaps in jokes in the workplace. Did you hear her making jokes like that?
ASSUNCAO: I've heard her tell jokes. I mean, no, Paula would always make fun of me because she could call me politically correct Nancy, because I was always like -- which was funny. I was like the mommy in the group. And no one loved a good dirty joke better than Paula. But, you know, I never heard her say anything that was horrible or, you know, she's just -- she has a great dirty sense of humor. She's notorious for that whenever she does her shows. You know, sometimes I would like joke with her and say no, you have to watch what you say with the jokes, but I never really heard anything that was all that offensive.
COOPER: You say a dirty joke. There is a difference between a dirty joke and a joke using rational slur.
ASSUNCAO: No, no, I have never -- she would do dirty jokes. I mean, I really -- as I said, six years I worked with her and traveled with her a great deal and never heard her talk like that.
COOPER: Because she does talk about this in the deposition. Obviously, you support her. you are a friend of hers. You used to work with her for a long time. You feel very close to her.
ASSUNCAO: No, you know, we worked together for six years. I stopped working with Paula over a year ago. I haven't spoken to Paula since. I have nothing to gain by this. But I have to tell you that in all truth, I was very saddened today because yes, there clearly were mistakes made but let me say this, I know this woman's heart. I may not have always agreed with how she, you know, how she ran her business or the direction that it may have taken. Clearly, there were mistakes made, but I do know this woman's heart --
COOPER: And I think it's -- and we should point out she acknowledged making mistakes and was asking for forgiveness. She wasn't very specific.
I'm wondering from a PR stand point, what do you make of how she handled this situation? Because, you know, she first put out this kind of oddly edited video that was then with drawn, you know, she agreed to go on "the Today show." She didn't go -- she blew that off the last minute. She put out this oddly edited video, then she withdrew that and then she put out this another video. And most people seeing that other video, you know, I think it's sad no matter how you look at this. It's a sad situation. It is sad to watch her on this video. What do you make of the process?
ASSUNCAO: You know, the process, in all fairness Anderson, it was cringe worthy. I mean, it was not handled well. It doesn't paint the full picture of how -- what this woman's character really is. They should not have agreed to go on "the Today show" and not go through with it. And frankly, I never heard anyone speaking for a trial, so I was confused by that. COOPER: That's the thing you do have to consider is there is a lawsuit involved with this so from a legal standpoint, she has to be careful in being specific of what she is apologizing for. There has been a lot of criticism that she wasn't -- give should of any specifics about what she was actually apologizing for. But there is a lawsuit involved in this. So, it's a difficult situation for her to be in. Do you think she should have made any kind of public statement given the fact there is this lawsuit?
ASSUNCAO: No. Anderson, anyone can play Monday morning quarterback and come up with a greater illusion of what has just transpired which is most unfortunate. I would have handled it differently. I would not have let -- I probably would have picked one person that had great credibility. And I think, you know, Paula, what everyone loves about Paula is that she's so affable, she is adorable, she is funny. I don't think she was coached right. I don't think that she was presented in the best light, and it's sad all around.
COOPER: Yes. I think everybody will agree with you that it's really just heart breaking facts. I do think there is a lot of people who love this woman and love for what she's done and her story of about she is success --
ASSUNCAO: She really does, as I said, you know, I haven't spoken to her in over a year. I do know what she does behind the scenes. So much without publicity, and, you know, her entourage is a fascinating bunch of people. I mean she has virtually every ethnicity, every kind of person, gays, rate, you know, children of immigrants, I mean, it's a very a collective group of people that she has. She has no turnover in her crowd.
ASSUNCAO: So, as I said, I know her from a different way, and it's very unfortunate.
COOPER: It certainly is. Nancy, appreciate you calling in tonight.
Nancy Assuncao, thank you very much.
ASSUNCAO: thank you.
COOPER: I want to bring in Syracuse University's Boyce Watkins. Professor Watkins is the founder of the blackworld.com. With me here, writer and culture critic, Michaela Angela Davis.
So Professor Watkins, what do you make of this? I know you've been a fan of Paula Deen for a long time.
BOYCE WATKINS, PROFESSOR, SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY: Yes, I think her food is good, actually. It was one of my favorite restaurants. So, like a lot of people I was very disappointed to hear about any of this. I tried to understand this. I tried to look at it from a human standpoint. And when I see Paula Deen and I'm from the south like she is, I really kind of see her almost like the Charles Barkley of cooking, you know. She sells you food that might kill you. She might tell the joke that might offend you and political correctness hasn't really been her strong suit.
And so, if you look throughout her life, you see a woman that has probably learned the hard way that you can't just sort of lay yourself out there for the public to consume because not everybody is going to get the joke. And I certainly don't get the joke because this is a very serious issue.
COOPER: Is there a difference between political correct -- people throw around that term political correctness but, you know, if, in fact, and we don't know whether this lawsuit is true or not but if she's using jokes with the "n" word in the workplace and all sorts of things, what do you make of it?
MICHAELA ANGELA DAVIS, EDITORIAL BRAND MANAGER, BET: You know, it is interesting. I was listening to this conversation. It's heart breaking. Slavery was heart breaking. Jim Crow was heart breaking, you know. And the people she may have offended, their hearts have been broken for generations. So, to focus this on her feelings and what she's done is very uncomfortable. Do you know what I mean?
So I think that, you know, her PR, former PR person was talking this is really complicated, and I think she needed Olivia Pope or someone that could give her some cultural context because her lack of historic and cultural context is really disturbing.
COOPER: You have actually pointed out that's an ongoing, you believe that's an ongoing issue with her that the kind of food that she cooks has a long tradition in the African-American community. It is not something that she acknowledge.
DAVIS: Absolutely. Southern food and black culture are infrequently combined, right? And so, she has benefited them, participated in and elevated on the big part of African-American and American culture that she has not acknowledged and she could have done this without jeopardizing the case like really be clear like I understand the culture in which I have been participating, the culture in which I have benefited and I'm sorry in giving some historic context to the triggers that she touched. She made no mention of the civil war and what a horror the institution of slavery is. She made no reference that Jim Crow is homeland terrorism. She has no compassion and comprehension --
COOPER: Not just the apology, but she also deposition where she talks about planning a plantation style wedding with African-Americans dressed in sort of white --
WATKINS: But, is that her job?
DAVIS: Yes, I think so.
COOPER: Professor Watkins?
WATKINS: I mean, she's a cook. You know --
DAVIS: She's a brand. WATKINS: I think it isn't. I think it is important for her to be educated, absolutely, just the same way rappers have to be educated about destructive lyrics and things like that. But, we have to understand.
Don't get me wrong, she can be forgiven for this. She has to be confronted on this. Workplace racism is one of those serious problems that so many people experience that so many people have a hard time fighting but let's sort of thing about this for a second.
You know, she is a southern woman born in the 1940s, she spent 20 years of her life at least in a world where using the "n" word was acceptable, where black people were treated in a certain way. Now, this does not excused her behavior now. She has to be confronted, absolutely. But at the same time we have to ask ourselves how much different is Paula Deen from so many other millions of Americans who will say things behind closed doors, for mostly those things in public.
COOPER: Professor Watkins, let me ask you because I've been getting tweets from her fans and they are many, obviously out there who disappointing the Food Network's decision. They feel the media is over blowing this. they say it is the media's fault that she got fired. And some of the things I've been hearing from people is saying well, look, she admitted to using those words long ago and in this lawsuit she's not saying that she used the "n" word more recently and actually put a time frame of those. I think she acknowledged perhaps in some jokes perhaps she did. Would that be in any way acceptable as a reason?
WATKINS: No, no, I don't think you can blame the media for this. I mean, Paula created this herself, let's be clear about that. I think that what Paula really needs to do is she needs to do a little bit more of what she's been doing without all the slipups. And that means, you know, you have to apologize. You have to show genuine remorse. You have to show humility. You have to show that you're willing to change and you are willing to grow and you are willing to learn.
That's where people won't forgive you if you're arrogant about it, then, you are going to have a serious problem. But, if she, I think that if she's the person that I believe that she is, you know, I think she's going to be OK. Remember, she grew up with these anxiety disorders. So pretty much everything makes her nervous since she was a child.
So ultimately, this anxiety that you see in these videos that go out and come down and the thing that happened with "the Today show," I attribute that to the fact that I believe deep down she's a person that wants to do the right thing and wants to be a good person but that doesn't mean she's not infected with the disease of racism. And if she's not willing to confront that honestly and use this as a learning opportunity, then, she is going to have some serious problems.
COOPER: Michaela, you also believe this could be a learning opportunity?
DAVIS: Absolutely. I think that she could really be an ambassador. I mean, there are people to this day that chant the south will rise again out a football game in Alabama. She could really be the voice, move those people and herself into today. And I feel like she really missed an opportune tip today. I think she is really not --
COOPER: Do you think she can bounce back?
DAVIS: I don't. Like I said, I don't know. Unless she really tries to learn. The fact -- and I don't excuse her for -- she's living in today. She's profiting off southern culture today. So, to say she was born in time that was OK. I don't buy that. I feel like her fried chicken has come home to roost and she has to make a real effort and get uncomfortable to make a historic connection to where she's living and how she's living.
COOPER: We got to leave it there.
Michaela Angela Davis, it is great to have you again. And Professor Boyce Watkins, thank you so much again.
Let us know what you think. let's talk about this on twitter @andersoncooper. I've been tweeting about this already.
Just ahead, more on tonight's other breaking stories. Federal prosecutors charging NSA leaker, Edward Snowden, with charges under the espionage act. We'll talk to senior legal analyst and former federal prosecutor, Jeffrey Toobin, also to Glenn Greenwald.
Plus, a 360 exclusive, Alan Chambers gives his first interview since Exodus International shut down for good. That's the longest running or oldest that so-called ex-gay group. I'm going to ask him why he changed his thinking on reparative therapy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ALAN CHAMBERS, PRESIDENT, EXODUS INTERNATIONAL: I know there are people who have taken their life because they felt so ashamed of who they are, felt like God couldn't love them as they are, and that's something that will haunt me until the day I die.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Another big breaking stories, as we said at the top of the program, U.S. federal prosecutors have filed a criminal complaint against Edward Snowden, charging him with theft of government property, unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communications of classified intelligence with an unauthorized person. And two of those fall under the espionage act. But, to fictionally, makes note an alleged spy in the government's mind, certainly.
The process of trying to bring him back from Hong Kong, now underway. Snowden, of course, is the former NSA contractor who has admitted leaking highly classified documents about the NSA's phone and Internet surveillance programs, documents he acquired while working for the private contractor, Boost Alan Hamilton. "The Washington Post" from Britain's Guardian newspaper published some of them.
Glenn Greenwald obtained some of the documents and he joins me by the phone, so does CNN's senior legal analyst and former federal prosecutor, Jeffrey Toobin.
So Glenn, I know believe Snowden had done this country in the men service, performed an act patriotism by revealing those papers. What do you make of the charges against him now?
GLENN GREENWALD, COLUMNIST, THE GUARDIAN (via phone): I think the key context, Anderson, is the absolutely atrocious record of the Obama administration when it comes to press freedoms and the treatment of whistleblowers and leakers.
The espionage act is a 1917 statute that would have enacted under the Woodrow administration designed to criminalize descent against World War I. And for that reason, it has been used a very sparingly before Barack Obama came -- became president. Only a total of three leakers haves been prosecuted under that statute in the pre-Obama era.
Under President Obama, we now have seven, more than double the number, of all previous presidents combined. This is why James Goodale who is the general counsel of "the New York Times" during the fights with the Nixon administration over the Pentagon papers said that Obama is becoming even worse than Richard Nixon. On press freedom, John Mayer the great investigative journalist for "the New Yorkers" has said that all these prosecutions have brought investigative journalism to a standstill in the United States and it's a true threat to press freedom. And I think it is one thing to charge Snowden with crimes, but to charge him with espionage which is when somebody works for a foreign government or sells secrets, given what he did is the kind of extreme excess that the Obama administration is guilty of for years now.
COOPER: Jeff Toobin, can you talk about these charges and explain them, the severity of them?
JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST (via phone): Well, the espionage act is a long and complicated statute that most people think of as espionage whether it is (INAUDIBLE) in a cartoon or, you know, people -- you know, the Julia and Rosenberg in the 1950s.
Under the words of the espionage act, it doesn't have to be that kind of espionage where you give the material to a foreign power. All it has to be is information given to an unauthorized person that could be used to the injury of the United States in the words of the statute. So technically, it is possible to use the espionage act, but Glenn is certainly right that the Obama administration has been much more aggressive in using the espionage act for leaks to journalists as opposed to spying for a foreign country.
COOPER: And Jeff, the U.S. will ask China to arrest and I guess, and certainly detain Snowden presumably if they are able to find him. What are the next steps for the justice department?
TOOBIN: Here is where it gets enormously complicated, both legally and diplomatically. He is presumably and I don't know, Glenn probably knows much better than I do, still in Hong Kong. We have an extradition treaty in Hong Kong. Hong Kong, however, is only semi independent from China and our extradition treaty from China is not -- with Hong Kong is not airtight.
So, if he can be found in Hong Kong which is not at all clear, and if both the Hong Kong and the Chinese governments want to turn him over, there could be an extradition proceeding. All of that is enormously complicated and could take a great deal of time, but it all depends on finding him in the first place and I don't think that's been done yet.
COOPER: Glenn, just quickly, an Icelandic businessman is offering a private plane to fly Snowden to Iceland if the government will guarantee they won't extradite him to the U.S. So far, as I understand, Iceland hasn't received an asylum or pressed from Snowden. Do you think that's something we can expect? Do you have information about that?
GREENWALD: I think that's one of the option he has been looking at, but I think it is important to realize that there is lots of support for him and what he did all over the world. People all over the world use the Internet. They are very concerned about this kind of spying. And I think you are going to see a lot of different options he has for countries and populations around the world to think he did a noble thing and should be protected rather than spending the rest of his life in prison.
COOPER: Glenn Greenwald, appreciate you calling in. Jeff Toobin, as well.
A lot more ahead tonight. A "360" exclusive, Alan Chambers, his first interview since the group he once led, Exodus International, so-called ex-gay group shut down. Since yesterday that announcement, for decades Exodus told people they could change their sexual orientation. Now Chambers is apologizing. He no longer believe so-called reparative therapy works. And this exclusive conversation coming up.
Also, pending court rule that could pivotal in the murder trial of George Zimmerman, concerns an audio recording made shortly before Trayvon Martin was killed. We will play it for you ahead.
COOPER: Welcome back, tonight a 360 exclusive. In a moment you'll hear from Alan Chambers, who until recently was head of Exodus International, the oldest organization of the so-called ex-gay movement. This is his first interview since Exodus officially shut its doors days ago.
For more than three decades and chapters across the country, Exodus promoted what is often called reparative therapy, telling people that they could change their sexual orientation. But now in addition to closing up shop, Exodus International is apologizing. Alan Chambers is also apologizing to gay people who are counselled by Exodus. Here he is in a documentary hosted Lisa Lang.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP
CHAMBERS: I'm sorry for the pain and the hurt that many of you had experiences. I'm sorry that some of you spent years of working through shame and guilt you felt when your attractions didn't change. I'm sorry that we promoted sexual orientation efforts and reparative theories about sexual orientation that stigmatized parents.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, a lot of people obviously are curious about what prompted Mr. Chambers change of view and his apparent remorse. He joins me tonight.
COOPER: So Alan, you've issued an apology and the organization Exodus International has shut its doors. Can you explain what you're apologizing for? What are you sorry about?
CHAMBERS: Well, we're sorry for the many people who took part in the ministries or the counselors or were impacted by the rhetoric, frankly, of leaders and including myself over the years that caused shame and hurt and promises whether they were intentional or not of promising that orientation would change, and that they could expect something that they didn't come to receive. So that's something we're very, very sorry for, the hurt and the shame and the anxiety and the trauma that people were caused.
COOPER: I got to say and I give you props for this, it's rare that anybody in public life changes their mind and then publicly acknowledges and actually says the word I'm sorry as opposed to like, well, I misspoke or something. What -- why now?
CHAMBERS: Well, you know, it's been a long thing coming, certainly, coming to terms with -- with issues in our own life. You know, I came to Exodus as a 19-year-old kid in 1991 and it wasn't until 2006 that I even admitted publicly that I still had same sex attractions, that those things hadn't changed for me. And you know, listening to people's stories and hearing them say we felt we promised them something -- we did promise them something, that we did promote something that hurt them. That's -- that's something we couldn't help but apologize for and feel very, very sorry about.
COOPER: In one of the apologies I read you put on your website and it's titled I'm sorry, I want to read part of it. I'm sorry so many interpreted this religious rejection by Christians as God's rejection. I'm profoundly sorry many have walked away from their faith and that some have chosen to end their lives. Do you believe that the teachings of Exodus are responsible for people's deaths?
CHAMBERS: You know, I believe there are vulnerable people out there who are in a state of anxiety over their feelings and the things they cannot change, and they look to Exodus and they look to religion and to the church to offer them help, and when we have told them that they should feel ashamed or that they should try to change these things that we have realized we cannot change.
I believe that that causes all sorts of trauma, and I know that there are people who have taken their life because they felt so ashamed of who they are, felt like God couldn't love them as they are and that's something that will haunt me until the day I die.
COOPER: Do you now believe that it's possible to change your sexual orientation?
CHAMBERS: No, I don't.
COOPER: But you -- do you consider yourself -- I mean, you are married. Do -- and you've said --
CHAMBERS: I'm married.
COOPER: And you said you have same-sex attractions.
CHAMBERS: I do.
COOPER: Which you work on resisting. Do you consider yourself gay?
CHAMBERS: You know, I think we're so apt in our culture to put sexual labels on ourselves that really are secondary, at best, to who we are. You know, for me, I do have same-sex attractions, but I also have an exclusive attraction to my wife. In 16 years almost of marriage I've never been tempted to be unfaithfully to her.
That doesn't mean I don't experience same-sex attraction. It's for me those areas of my life have changed. Do have a very happy content amazing relationship with my wife that is everything a marriage relationship should be, and that attraction that I have to the same sex doesn't hinder me in that relationship.
COOPER: You actually met with people who have been through Exodus, people who have worked, in some cases, for years to change their orientation, people who have attempted suicide in some cases. In Lisa Lang's special report "God and Gays," they actually confronted you and you apologized to them directly. I want to play one clip from that documentary from a man named Sean.
SEAN: I woke up one day, my friend went to work and he had a loaded gun in his closet and I was so happy about dying it felt like I was opening a Christmas present. That's how I felt. I went over to the closet and I stood there and I pray that prayer that I had prayed probably a million times, and I said God, why will you not change me? And I can't describe it, but something from the outside, Alan, told me not to take my life, and I said God, why won't you change me? And it said to me because there's nothing that I need to change about you.
COOPER: I was wondering what personally was going through your mind when -- when you heard their stories?
CHAMBERS: It was excruciatingly difficult to sit there and listen to that. It was a crushing weight to -- to just simply hear their trauma and their pain and their -- their anguish and what was going through my mind was I would do anything to have -- have fixed this.
COOPER: One of the things you also said in your statement, which I thought was really interesting, you said that -- and I don't have the direct quote in front of me, but that the world view that you and Exodus have had over the last more than three decades, that it did not show respect I think to our fellow human beings, I think you said and it wasn't biblical. I'm wondering if you can just explain what do you mean by that?
CHAMBERS: Certainly the notion that someone can go into a therapy session and change from gay to straight. We found that to be unbiblical, which is why over a year ago, we removed the whole reparative therapy component from our referral process.
COOPER: So you don't think reparative therapy works?
CHAMBERS: I don't.
COOPER: Can you be a Christian and be a gay person and an openly gay person in a relationship with another person in the same sex?
CHAMBERS: I know a lot of amazing Christians who are in same-sex relationships.
COOPER: And you believe a gay person can go to heaven?
CHAMBERS: Absolutely. The bible doesn't say that this type of person is allowed to have a relationship with Jesus Christ. That offer is open to every single person and the people who have a relationship with Jesus Christ. No matter what, when they have that relationship their eternity is secure.
COOPER: Alan, I appreciate you taking the time to speak to me. Thank you.
COOPER: I spoke to Alan a couple of hours ago and the interview actually went on for 20 minutes or so. We're going to post the whole interview later tonight on our web site ac360.com. I hope you watch it.
A lot more ahead tonight including major decision that could shape the verdict in George Zimmerman's murder trial, it's all about what's on a piece of audio tape. We'll play that for you.
Later, we'll take you to where the water rose so high, pictures are just incredibly -- can't recognize the location.
COOPER: Crime and punishment tonight, in a court ruling that could be pivotal in the murder trial of George Zimmerman. Zimmerman is charged, of course, with second degree murder in the killing 17-year- old Trayvon Martin last year in Sanford, Florida. The ruling which has been expected today, but never came concerns admissibility of testimony from audio experts who analyzed the screams on a piece of 911 tape.
The question is whose voice is it, Trayvon Martin or is it George Zimmerman's or someone else's. Tonight, you can decide for yourself. One warning though, there is another crucial piece of audio for you to judge as well and to judge it properly, you need to hear the entire phrase, which includes the "f" word so I just want to warn you right now if you would rather not hear that word, now is the time to turn down the volume. Here is 360's Randi Kaye.
RANDI KAYE, CNN INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This 45- second 911 call captures the last moments of Trayvon Martin's life. Listen. The key and contentious question, who is screaming, is it Trayvon Martin or is it neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman, the man accused of murdering him?
UNIDENTIFIED OPERATOR: So you think he's yelling help?
UNIDENTIFIED NEIGHBOR: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED OPERATOR: All right, what is your --
KAYE: After a single gunshot is heard on the tape, the screaming suddenly stops.
UNIDENTIFIED OPERATOR: I don't hear him yelling anymore. Do you hear anything?
UNIDENTIFIED NEIGHBOR: No, I don't because I'm hiding upstairs. There was a gun shout outside the house.
KAYE: That's why prosecutors insist those screams came from an unharmed teenager fighting for his life. They are leaning on experts like this.
TOM OWEN, FORENSIC AUDIO EXPERT: I have an exemplar of George Zimmerman from his reenactment. The screams don't match at all so that's what tells me that OK, it's not George Zimmerman of the screams that I have presented.
KAYE: But the defense says the state's expert is relying on unproven science, instead defense attorneys point to the testimony of an FBI speech scientist who told the court with current technology it's not possible to determine whether the voice on the tape belongs to Trayvon martin or George Zimmerman. The speech scientist said with 3 seconds of uninterrupted screaming on the 911 call, there is no way to know for sure.
HIROTAKA NAKASONE, FBI SPEECH SCIENTIST: We determined that screaming was not normal. It was by someone who was facing probably imminent threat of death or something, very difficult to analyze.
KAYE: Still, the neighbor who made the 911 call told AC 360 she believes it was Trayvon Martin screaming for help that night. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I definitely could tell it was a younger youthful voice than it was the deep voice that I heard when they were arguing, and I heard them outside my window.
KAYE: Trayvon's mother also told us she has no doubt the screams came from her son.
SYBRINA FULTON, TRAYVON MARTIN'S MOTHER: People can say anything they want to. I just personally don't believe it. I know that it was my son that was crying out for help.
KAYE: But George Zimmerman's father testified the screams belong to his son.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Were you able to identify whose voice it was screaming for help?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And whose was it?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was absolutely George's.
KAYE: It's not the only phone call from that night that stirred up controversy. Last year it was Zimmerman's call to 911. At issue, Zimmerman was accused of using the "f" word followed by the word coons when talking about Trayvon Martin to the dispatch operator. Listen.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where is he heading towards?
ZIMMERMAN: The back entrance.
KAYE: Audio expert Tom Owens conclusion, Zimmerman actually used the word punks. Listen again. That bit of the call only lasted about 1.6 seconds, but the controversy still lingers.
MARK O'MARA, GEORGE ZIMMERMAN'S ATTORNEY: Trayvon Martin was not profiled because he was black. George is not a racist.
KAYE: He may not be a racist, but a jury will soon decide if George Zimmerman is a murderer. Randi Kaye, CNN, Atlanta.
COOPER: Again, the judge's rulings as they expected shortly and opening statements are set for Monday. Let's dig deeper now with Mark Geragos, criminal defense attorney and author of "Mistrial, An Inside Look at How the Criminal Justice System Works and Sometimes Doesn't" and also joining me is Marcia Clark, former Los Angeles deputy district attorney and author of latest thriller "Killer Ambition."
Marcia, so there is an expert testimony who is screaming during that 911 call. How important do you think this is to the prosecution's case?
MARCIA CLARK, AUTHOR, "KILLER AMBITION": I think it's very, very important to the prosecution's case. This is literally you should pardon the expression, the smoking gun. The person screaming if it's determined to be Trayvon Martin and it makes it clear he was not the aggressor and George Zimmerman murdered him or goes a long way towards establishing that.
The thing is, Anderson, that even without an expert, you're going to have the people on the jury determining whether they believe it was Trayvon Martin's voice or Zimmerman's anyway and then you have the neighbor's lay opinion who said, as you saw on the tape piece, that he believed it sounded like Trayvon Martin's voice, a younger voice and he was there.
And that might actually be the most reliable testimony of all. But at the end of the day, what is so critical about this ruling, is because it add so much weight -- it may, may add so much weight that it was Trayvon Martin screaming, if the ruling is incorrect and Zimmerman is convicted, it may be overturned on appeal if found to be error. So this is a ruling critical in many respects and may result in reversal on appeal if it's wrong.
COOPER: Mark, why not just let -- you know, keep the experts on all sides and let the jury decide who they believe?
MARK GERAGOS, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, because as Marcia said, if you do that, it turns out this is junk science, which by the way, it's completely junk science. Then the -- some appellant court, if there's a conviction is going to say you should have let it in, that could have been the determination why he was found guilty and therefore we'll reverse it.
I'll tell you, however, we're in Florida and this is reminisce of Casey Anthony case when they brought in that expert who they wanted they have talk about the human remains smell in the trunk, and I remember thinking at the same time that that was total junk science. So I don't understand what's in the water down there that the prosecutors are drinking.
Because they bring in these people who are thoroughly discredited by the scientific establishment and try to present that as their case in chief. It really is mind boggling because as you saw on the tape piece as Marcia referred to, they say this is junk and it's up to the judge to be the gate keeper and keep this junk out of the jury's hands.
COOPER: Marcia, do you agree it's junk?
CLARK: I am not sure, Anderson. It may be. I'm not an expert in this field. I do know the experts have said that you don't tell whose voice it is when they are screaming, that screaming is very difficult to type because the voice is under unusual pressure and that may force somebody's voice into upper registers when it wouldn't be there. And if that's the case and the scream is a distorting factor, I'm not sure how and I agree I'm not an expert so I'll back away from making expert-type opinions here but that alone to me seems to pose a problem with this. GERAGOS: Anderson, this reminds me so much of about 15 years ago in Texas, they used to have this guy who would go around testifying in the arson cases and testifying about that the excel --
COOPER: It's junk science.
GERAGOS: It's been debunked as junk science. This is the same idea.
COOPER: Mark, what about the word profiling because the judge says you can use the word profiling just not in conjunction with the word racial. Does that make sense?
GERAGOS: I was perplexed by this. I don't understand why you have to front what words you use in the opening. If you want to say they profiled, they racially profiled. He's a want to be cop, I wouldn't object. I would want the prosecutor to hang themselves out on whatever line they want to hang out so if they don't live up to it, I can argue it in closing. I don't get why you have to preview, if you will, your language before you do an opening. I understand previewing exhibits. That happens all the time but not my language.
COOPER: Marcia, do you agree with that?
CLARK: Yes, that's crazy. The reason it happened, though, is because the defense came out front and said we don't want you to say x, y and z. I agree with Mark, say it all, say everything because I want you to be able to be hung later when you don't prove it was racial profiling or don't prove he was --
COOPER: Thank you. Marcia Clark, Mark Geragos, appreciate it. Thanks very much. Have a good weekend.
Massive flooding and evacuations -- incredible pictures, torrential rain, flash floods and death toll rising. We'll show where it's happening ahead.
Also autopsy results in the death of James Gandolfini. What killed the 51-year-old actor? We'll be right back.
COOPER: There is a lot more happening tonight. Let's check in with Susan Hendricks with our 360 Bulletin -- Susan.
SUSAN HENDRICKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, Canadian police now say two people have died as a result of severe flooding near Calgary in the western province of Alberta. At least 6 inches of rain have fallen in the last few days, swelling rivers forcing tens of thousands to evacuate their homes.
There is word that 10-year-old Sarah woke up tonight able to nod yes and no to questions. She's in a Philadelphia hospital recovering from lung transplant surgery 10 days ago. Sarah was put into a medically induced coma prior to the surgery.
An autopsy confirms that James Gandolfini died of a heart attack, that word from a friend who says the family hopes to return Gandolfini's body to New York for a funeral at the end of the next week.
COOPER: Susan, thanks. Up next, head to Morgan Spurlock's new CNN debut.
COOPER: A new CNN original series debuts Sunday night called "INSIDE MAN" hosted by Morgan Spurlock, the Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker. Every week, he gives viewers an insider's look at American life. In his first program, Spurlock takes us inside the growing business of medical marijuana. It's Sunday night 10:00 Eastern right here on CNN. I hope you join us. We're looking forward to it.
That does it for this edition of 360. At 10:00 tonight, a special report, "TWA Flight 800, No Survivors" will be on again for 360.
Thanks for watching, "PIERS MORGAN LIVE" starts now.