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George Zimmerman Trial; America in Black and White; Interview with Dr. Drew Pinsky; Battle Over Pot

Aired June 25, 2013 - 21:00   ET


PIERS MORGAN, CNN HOST: And the stunning decision on civil rights from the Supreme Court. Our legal team breaks it all down.

Plus 13 million people watched this live on the Discovery Channel.


NIK WALLENDA, HIGH-WIRE WALKER: Praise you, God. Praise you, Jesus.


MORGAN: A wing and a prayer, quite literally. I'll talk exclusively to a key member of the Team Wallenda and Pastor Joel Osteen.

Also, inside the mind of Edward Snowden. Who is the man who's revealed America's secrets?

And gone to pot. America's obsession with marijuana. We brought you the story of the pot moms of Beverly Hills. Tonight a man who's had his own struggles with addiction. Why Patrick Kennedy is leading the charge against legalizing cannabis.

But I want to begin with a day of graphic and sometimes shocking testimony in George Zimmerman's trial.

CNN's Martin Savidge has the latest -- Martin.

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Piers, yes, today was a day where the courtroom was really transported back in time, taken back to the fateful night where Trayvon Martin, the 17-year-old, was killed by George Zimmerman. That's not in contest really. It has always been said that George Zimmerman killed the teen. It's whether he did it in self-defense or murder. That's why we have the trial.

But it was the images. We've seen so many images from this story but this was the first time we saw the images of Trayvon Martin himself lying dead on the ground. It was a shock to the courtroom. I think it was safe to say it was a shock to the jury, as well, to see just a young teen lying lifeless on the ground. The images had tremendous impact and humanized what up until now has been basically an argument between defense and prosecution. So those images extremely powerful -- Piers.

MORGAN: And, Martin, what were the key points that came out from the evidence? It seemed to me one of them, there is no evidence apparently of DNA on the gun. How significant could that be, of Trayvon Martin's DNA I should say?

SAVIDGE: Right. Well, this is an issue because of course there has been some talk there may have been a struggle over the weapon, and that at one point Trayvon Martin put his hand on the gun, reached for the gun. So try to figure out whose DNA, especially his, that there we found in the weapons would be significant. However, there are going to be those that argue, look, it was not good weather-wise that night. It was raining and at times raining a lot. So it's possible that in the hours it took to process the scene, some of that DNA could be washed away.

I will point out one of the significant pieces of testimony that came out today was a first responder who talked about showing up and trying to revive the young teen. This is moments after he is shot. It was pretty emotional stuff, take a listen.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What did you do upon hearing those bubbling sounds from Trayvon Martin's chest.

SGT. ANTHONY RAIMONDO, JR., SANFORD POLICE DEPARTMENT: I called out to the crowd that was gathering nearby and I asked for Saran wrap and Vaseline, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And what would be the purpose of Saran wrap and Vaseline?

RAIMONDO: I was going to try to seal the chest wound, sir.


SAVIDGE: He's literally trying to plug that wound, unaware, of course, that of course the young teen had been shot through the heart and he was -- there was no way he could have been revived, but for the parents of Trayvon Martin, Tracy Martin actually got up and left when he saw that imagery. Sabrina Fulton, Trayvon's mother just sat there very stoically and listened through it all the last moments of her son's life.

MORGAN: But so far, Martin, I mean, we know that apparently there is no Trayvon Martin DNA on the gun. We also know that apparently no evidence of bruising on his fists. So if you're looking at this in totality, quite hard to see how this has been the bruising brawl that the Zimmerman camp would like us to believe unless he simply, as they've tried to infer, banged Zimmerman's head on the concrete.

SAVIDGE: Right. I mean, that is the point that clearly the prosecution was maintaining that they look at those hands and they say -- of Trayvon Martin, that there is no clear indication that he was delivering some beating, however, then today they actually showed the photographs that were taken by the police and it was the defense that said well, you can see the bumps there on George Zimmerman's head.

It's not a medical measure of the severity. That's going to come later. So really, you know, what we have heard. This is the thing with this case. We've all heard the evidence. It's whether or not we've been told it in the full fashion that the defense of prosecution believes that needs to be delivered. So these are early days. There's a lot more to come. We especially probably going to hear from the girlfriend of Trayvon Martin who was supposedly on the phone when all of this was transpiring and that could be some really interesting testimony.

MORGAN: Well, that could be absolutely riveting testimony because we think she was there right through the last few seconds before the alleged confrontation started.

Martin Savidge, thank you very much. I'm sure we'll talk again over the next few days.

And I want to bring in my legal dream team on this. Joining me now are Gloria Allred and Thomas Mesereau.

Welcome to you, both.

Let's start with you, Gloria. Pretty significant day, I think, because the more that we hear so far, the less evidence there is of a fistfight or any kind of conventional brawl.

GLORIA ALLRED, CIVIL RIGHTS ATTORNEY: And we may, in fact, hear that there is no DNA under Trayvon Martin's fingernails, either, and that would mean that he wasn't fighting, so we'll have to wait and see if that comes in. Also, it's going to be interesting as to the girlfriend when she testifies, or the friend who may not have been a girlfriend, according to the testimony, her credibility is going to be at issue, and I'm sure that the defense is going to be attacking her big time because she's expected to testify that she heard Trayvon Martin say he's following me, which would not be a good fact for George Zimmerman.

MORGAN: Right.

Tom Mesereau, from all that you've seen so far, would you rather be in the defense or the prosecution camp?

THOMAS A. MESEREAU JR., CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER: Well, Piers, because the law so much favors the defense, I mean, this is one of the best self-defense statutes for a defendant I've ever seen and it's one of the most pro-defense states in America when it comes to raising self- defense.

Because the law favors them so much, you would have to assume at this point that the defendant is in better shape. However, the prosecutor gave a very powerful opening statement. He controlled the courtroom. He's already raising questions about what Zimmerman has said repeatedly about what he did.

I think the prosecution is in better shape than a lot of people think, despite this very pro-defense law.

MORGAN: Is the problem, though, Tom, that in the end the only person that might have been able to answer the key questions is dead, Trayvon Martin, and that we may have circumstantial evidence, other people giving witness evidence like the friend of his and so on, but unless somebody can actually say for a fact how this alleged confrontation started, very hard to see how you can get to a conviction.

MESEREAU: Well, that's true, unless he takes the stand and gets caught in lies, and I suspect he will. Yes, the defendant has an advantage in that he is the only one alive who can testify to what happened in this alleged struggle. However, if he tells lies, if he gets caught with biases and problems that the forensic evidence points out, and people don't believe him, you may see a conviction. I also --


ALLRED: And even if he doesn't --

MESEREAU: Go ahead, Gloria.

ALLRED: I've got to say, even if he doesn't testify, Tom and Piers, then the whole issue of whether his prior calls reporting crime or perceived crime in his community are going to come into evidence. The prosecution wants those prior calls in because they want to try to show that he was profiling African-American men, that he did mention the race of some of the people he suspected who were on the HOA property prior to that particular incident, and they want to try to establish what they need to establish for second-degree murder, which is evil intent, indifference to human life, hatred, spite, all of those elements to prove second-degree murder.

MORGAN: But this is where, Thomas, that Florida is probably the best possible place in America that George Zimmerman could wish to be tried because, as you say, the statute of law there is so heavily skewed in his favor?

MESEREAU: Well, yes, and also remember, the burden of proof which applies in every state of America is beyond any reasonable doubt. That's a very high burden, it's the highest burden we know in our system of justice. When you combine that with these very pro-defense statutes on self-defense the prosecution has a tough time. It's not insurmountable because this guy has told some stories that I don't think are going to stand up. You have that tape where basically he's being warned do not follow him, get away.

My understanding is that homeowners association that he represented had a policy, don't confront people, call the police, let them do it, and he had a deadly weapon him. So there are a lot of problems with the defense but the law favors him so heavily they have an advantage at least at this point in my opinion.

MORGAN: The key thing, though, Gloria, could be in the end, the human reaction of this jury. We discussed this a bit yesterday. You know, you got all these women, mainly mothers, and they're going to see this young, quite slight body lying today on those graphic images of Trayvon Martin, 17 years old. They've seen today some pictures of the iced tea can he was carrying, the Skittles, the hoodie sweatshirt. This is a young teenage boy who has slain by somebody with a gun who -- and physically in court now looks huge and very powerful. How much could that in the end sway, do you think, this final decision?

ALLRED: Well, I think their heart must go out to the parents, especially the mother of the deceased Trayvon Martin. On the other hand they may always -- and also feel that here is a homeowner trying to protect the homes where other mothers live and fathers with their children.

MORGAN: Right.

ALLRED: And trying to do what he is -- what he's trying to do, which is make sure that there is no crime in the neighborhood. Did he go too far? That's going to be the question. Did he commit a crime? So I'm saying that the emotions of the mothers on the jury or the women on the jury could also flip the other way.

MORGAN: Right. Gloria Allred, Tom Mesereau, thank you both very much indeed.

From the George Zimmerman trial in Florida to the Supreme Court's ruling today on the Voting Rights Act. Is racism playing a role? Joining me now is Professor Michael Higginbotham, author of "Ghosts of Jim Crow: Ending Racism in Post-Racial America."

Welcome to you. Let me ask you, Michael Higginbotham, first of all, why has there been such an angry reaction to the SCOTUS rulings today? Spell it out for me.

PROF. F. MICHAEL HIGGINBOTHAM, AUTHOR, "GHOSTS OF JIM CROW": Well, first, it's good to be on a program particularly on a day and in a week where Americans are so concerned about civil rights and equal justice in the country. As to your specific question, I think people are concerned about issues of race in the country and particularly this voting rights decision because it's a sad and tragic decision.

The -- particularly when you think about the 50th anniversary of Medgar Evers who fought and died to register people to vote in Mississippi. When you got Nelson Mandela, one of the greatest fighters for voting, who is fighting for his life in a Johannesburg hospital. This background is particularly troubling when you have this decision come down.

It -- to strike down the Voting Rights Act, which is the most democratizing piece of legislation we've ever passed in this country where 800,000 new voters were registered within two years after its passage in 1965 is really sad, and for the majority to basically say that while racism continues and they recognize that, that it's up to Congress to prove it today, I think is really sad, Piers.

MORGAN: But it is sad and pretty extraordinary that you have to have the first African American president of the United States coming out blazing with furry in a Supreme Court decision like this. It's almost, you know, all the steps he took forward for America with his election being thrown right back again. HIGGINBOTHAM: Piers, we made tremendous progress in this country and as you mentioned, we elected and reelected the first African American president but progress doesn't mean post-racial. Progress doesn't mean that race is no longer significant in this society in terms of hardships and opportunities that individuals endure.

And I think for us to look at the Supreme Court majority decision, the only thing I think they did right is to say that history -- history matters and clearly, history matters and changes have occurred, but they also need to understand that racism matters, and that while history is changing, racism continues to exist in our -- in our society today.

MORGAN: On the subject of race, we've had this whole Paula Deen scandal this week. She was -- her sons were interviewed by Chris Cuomo, CNN's "NEW DAY." Let's take another look to what they said.


JAMIE DEEN, SON OF PAULA DEEN: Before I had my tonsils taken out, I was obviously -- I was 7 years old, I was very nervous and my parents gave me Hank Aaron pajamas and when they gave me these pajamas, my mom and dad told me the story of the challenges that the hammer faced in his pursuit of this record. They told me that he's a man of character and the challenges that he overcome because of his color was unacceptable.


MORGAN: What is your reaction to all this? Because we were talking about it on the show yesterday that, you know, if you put every American on the road, over the age of 55 and 60, and said, have you ever used the N word, for example, I suspect a very large number would have to say, yes, I have at some stage in my past.

Do you think it's right that she'd been thrown to the wolves in the way that she has?

HIGGINBOTHAM: Well, I think you're absolutely right, Piers, me included. I would have to admit that as well as most Americans would. I think what's important, though, is context and the context -- it's not the word, it's the context that the word is used and it's about values. We have to be real concerned about values now.

I don't know what the specifics are and I think we need to watch prejudging and stereotyping people. We need to let the facts come out, but I do believe that we need to listen to what she says tomorrow on "The Today Show" in terms of context that she's been using these words and see whether or not she has repenting. See whether or not she wants to have an apology, see what we think about the truthfulness and the sincerity of that apology. I think it's very important what context she delivers her apology in.

MORGAN: Just as a final question and a brief answer, if you don't mind. I've asked this to a few guests before, but do you believe in the context of all this going on this week, is America in your view a more or less racist country since Barack Obama first got elected president?

HIGGINBOTHAM: Well, as I said, I think we've mentioned -- we made tremendous progress, but I think we also see how the president has been treated when people stand up in Congress and say you lie. When, you know, individuals treat the president differently than they have treated other presidents, more disrespectful than they have treated other presidents. I think we need to think about whether or not that differing treatment has anything to do with race. And I think if you really look hard, if Americans really look hard at that, they will understand that race is still significant in how the president is treated even today.

MORGAN: Professor, thank you very much indeed for joining me.

HIGGINBOTHAM: Yes, my pleasure to join you.

MORGAN: When we come back, a daredevil thanks God. How Nik Wallenda made it across the Grand Canyon on a tightrope and how Joel Osteen helped. He joins me exclusively next.


NIK WALLENDA: Yes, Jesus. Praise you. Praise you, Jesus.




NIK WALLENDA: Lord, help this cable to calm down. Command it in your name, Jesus, with the authority of God praise you, praise you Jesus.


MORGAN: I would be praying, too, if I was doing that. That's Nik Wallenda asking for heavenly help as he walks across the Grand Canyon. He didn't have a harness, but he did have Joel Osteen close by. The pastor of Lakewood Church prayed with Wallenda just before the death- defying stunt. And he was there watching as the daredevil reached the other side. In the chair tonight, Joel Osteen, who joins me exclusively.

Joel, how are you how?

JOEL OSTEEN, PASTOR, LAKEWOOD CHURCH: Hey, doing great, Piers. Great to be with you.

MORGAN: So you're down at your Lakewood Church in Houston, which I actually passed by a few weeks ago and felt very spiritually moved just by your mere presence in that building. And I'm thinking the only person alive I know in the world who probably says Jesus more often in 20 minutes than Nik Wallenda is you. What were you thinking standing there watching this guy risking his life?

OSTEEN: You know, I was like millions of other Americans. I was just very, very nervous and very concerned. You know, it's just an amazing sight. He looked like a little speck out there in the middle of the canyon. But all I could do, Piers, is just pray like he was praying, as well, ask God to help him.

MORGAN: I mean, I've never seen anything quite like this. I didn't even know it was on. I discovered it through Twitter. My producer tweeted about, turn this thing on. And I was utterly gripped when I realized the guy had no safety apparatus whatsoever. You as a pastor -- there is a man repeating over and over again Jesus, pray, God, and so on. If he had fallen, what would you have said?

OSTEEN: You know, I didn't really think about it. I guess my thoughts were, Piers, that, you know what he was doing, what he loved to do, he felt like he is fulfilling his destiny of doing that. He comes from seven generations of it. Nik is a great guy.

I don't know. If he had fallen, I would have to cross the bridge when we got to it. It would have been tragic, but we just focused on the fact that he made it through, and you know, we're just happy for him.

MORGAN: Let's take a little listen to Nik during his extraordinary walk.


NIK WALLENDA: Lord, help this cable to calm down. Command it in your name, Jesus, with the authority of God praise you, praise you Jesus.


MORGAN: Now he's a devout Christian and also had, obviously, the family go back decades, centuries even, doing this kind of thing, and many members of that family have died in the pursuit of these glorious achievements that they do. When you were saying the prayer with Nik and his family before the walk, how did you pitch it? What did you say to him?

OSTEEN: Well, Piers, I prayed that God would give him strength and skill and that the gifts God had given him would come out to the full, that he would have focus and not be distracted -- just he would be at his best and the top of his game. And we prayed that the winds wouldn't be too strong.

So, really, just a prayer of peace. And it was really amazing, too, Piers before the walk, an hour or two before, Nik -- I was more nervous than he was. He's an extremely calm, peaceful person. He just believes he's in the palm of God's hand doing what he's supposed to do. So he's really an amazing man, and we just prayed for peace and strength, though.

MORGAN: He's a remarkable guy. I mean, he was so calm afterwards. He bent down and kissed the floor and then he gave these perfectly rational interview and I thought mate, you've just crossed the gGand Canyon on a little wire. It was the most extraordinary thing I've ever seen. There he is like he had gone down to the store to buy some milk. OSTEEN: I know. He just amazed me, as well. I was back there in the trailer with him, and I was more nervous than he was. But you know, I think there's some important lessons. He talked about and said Joel, I don't let thoughts of fear enter into my mind. You start thinking thoughts of fear and anxiety and falling and what about this, he said, that's what causes you to fall. So, I just program that out. And like you said at the first, if we were walking across that wire, we would be praying, as well.

So, you know, he just -- I think another important thing his dad said, he said Nik is not foolish. He's been doing this since he was two years old. He's incredibly skilled and talented. They use the best science, the best technology, the best engineering. And so I think that's important that people don't think he's just this foolish guy trying to put his life at risk. This is seven generations of what he believes he's called to do. And you know, we celebrate that it worked out.

MORGAN: I mean, it's a bit of an advertisement for the power of prayer and Christianity in America. Pretty awesome, isn't it?

OSTEEN: It really is. I mean, again, that's what he said. He said, Joel, this is the way I'm supposed to use my gifts, I feel, is to bring glory to God, and you know I'm in a unique position. This is Nik talking. And so it really is. That prayer brings him strength, brings him peace, the whole family - it's not just Nik. The whole family is incredibly supportive. They are fine people and just, you know, again, I celebrate what they are doing.

MORGAN: Are you going to be buying a pair of his jeans, which have now become the hottest jeans apparently in America?

OSTEEN: I didn't know that, but maybe I will! I guess so.

MORGAN: I can't see you in jeans somehow, Joel. You're always so immaculate in your smart suits.

OSTEEN: You would laugh if the camera pulled out. I'm wearing jeans right now, though. But -


MORGAN: I don't know if the camera can do that but if it can, do it.

OSTEEN: I don't know.

MORGAN: What are you planning next with Nik? He is obviously planning more death-defying stunts. Will you be with him every step of the way on these?

OSTEEN: Oh, I would love to. I felt very honored to be there. It's exciting. If I can offer any peace or prayer, that's great for me. But he talks about walking some skyscrapers in New York. But whatever he wants to do, you know what? I'll be there and do the little part that I can. But I don't know, I just -- I -- they are good people. MORGAN: Joel Osteen, it's always a great pleasure talking to you. Thank you very much for joining me.

OSTEEN: Thanks, Piers. Good to see you.

MORGAN: Coming next, searching for Snowden. The NSA leaker is somewhere in the Moscow airport. What will he do next? I'll ask Dr. Drew Pinsky, is Snowden addicted to risky behavior?



VLADIMIR PUTIN, PRESIDENT OF RUSSIA: Snowden is still in transit area as a transit passenger.

Mr. Snowden is a free man. The faster he chooses his ultimate destination, the better for us and for him.


MORGAN: Russian president Vladimir Putin talking about NSA leaker Edward Snowden, who tonight is somewhere inside the Moscow airport. To some, Snowden is a hero; to others, he's a criminal. But what is driving him? I want to ask Dr. Drew Pinsky, internist and host of DR DREW on HLN.

Dr. Drew, the interesting thing about Edward Snowden I find fascinating. What is going on in his head right now?


MORGAN: From all that you've seen about him, forget that the politics of this, forget the law. What's going on in this guy's head?

PINSKY: I -- the one thing I can tell you is it's not an addiction to something like a high -- high risk that sort of thing. Addicts do do that. Addicts are the sort of thrill seeking population. I see no evidence of anything like this in this guy.

There is probably more something to do with his relationship with authority. I mean think about this. You're going to take it upon yourself to take on the entire NSA --

MORGAN: But isn't there also a little touch of -- you know, he's seen Julian Assange, he's seen Manning, he's seen these guys all become global figures --

PINSKY: So it's fame?

MORGAN: And many --

PINSKY: It could be.

MORGAN: Well, many think he's a bit of a kind of loser geek who thinks I know what I'll do, I'll become a global superstar leaker. PINSKY: And -- to be fair, we are purely speculating.


PINSKY: And this is just talking off cuff on this guy. Yes, I think there might be something to that. I mean, people these days, how else do you make your splash? I mean, this is the first time in history fame as an autonomous motivator has showed up when you ask young people what they want to do with their lives.

MORGAN: Right.

PINSKY: You'll find it in all countries. You find not I want to have a family, I want --

MORGAN: I want to be famous.

PINSKY: I want to be famous.


PINSKY: So people are going to extreme to do that. So perhaps, perhaps that is a piece of what's going on now.

MORGAN: Let's move to Anthony Weiner who extraordinarily, a new poll in the race to New York City mayor has stormed to the lead, 25 percent over Christine Quinn at 20 percent.

What does this tell us about Americans' power of forgiveness? But more importantly isn't the crucial question be, do leopards change their spots? And we can have one of the most powerful political positions in America, held by somebody who will be sending -- let's be honest -- photos of his wiener to other strange women?

PINSKY: They learn to perhaps be more circumspect and careful but they don't change substantively. That kind of behavior, those sorts of phenomenon, do not in my opinion change unless there's been some sort of intensive treatment offered to somebody.

MORGAN: Does it make him ill-fitting to hold an office --

PINSKY: That I'm not in position to say but I am here to tell you that change is difficult, really difficult, even when somebody goes off the rail of behaviors that caused them lots of trouble, to change really substantively is a very difficult problem for people.

MORGAN: I mean, he's a strange character, Anthony. Because I've met him a few times, interviewed him on the show. He took on Donald Trump, been very charismatic, super confident before all this happened, and in fact he doesn't seem to show any sign of not being confident now.

PINSKY: Right.

MORGAN: He's been through a disgrace that would brought many men crashing to their knees, never to recover. There he is out there center stage and he said, look, there are other pictures of me out there that haven't come out yet, I'll take my chances.

PINSKY: Well, some people don't experience shame no matter what you do. And that may be part of his syndrome. We don't know. Perhaps it's just something that he understands the public and understands it.

One thing we like to do in this country is we like to raise -- humans generally tend to like this, they tend to rise people up, we did great games, betray the aristocracy, but we like to destroy them. We like to feel galvanized --


MORGAN: But I think in America --

PINSKY: We like redemption.

MORGAN: Right.

PINSKY: We like -- yes.

MORGAN: I was told by a Hollywood producer once that every great movie is in four parts, build up the character.


MORGAN: Knock them down to the pits.


MORGAN: Then you have the redemption and the glory. And this is where Weiner is heading.

PINSKY: Yes. We like resurrection from demise. We love that. And to one -- to one extent to another it relieves us of our own guilt of having knocked somebody down. But again, remember, this is a country that loves the underdogs, they like the person that's really in difficult circumstances. We love to root for that.

MORGAN: Well, I actually like Anthony Weiner and I'm going to go on the record as saying that. I think he's actually a -- he's an interesting, intelligent and charismatic guy.

PINSKY: And by the way, just because we talk about these liabilities you have, doesn't mean he couldn't be a great leader or a great politician.

MORGAN: Right. Most greatly it's a flaw.

PINSKY: Well, you're asking me a very interesting question. Certainly many, many of my favorite leaders had significant --

MORGAN: All of my favorite leaders were all completely flawed.

PINSKY: I think -- well, significant psychiatric problems.


PINSKY: Really do. I thought flawed. They might not even be flawed but they were struggling with something.

MORGAN: Let's talk about one of my great flaws, which is Starbucks. This is quite interesting. They're going to bring in calorie counters. Now this probably got this array of stuff. Some of it is quite terrifying, actually. I popped down to Starbucks, grab a sconn as we call them in England.

PINSKY: Horrible. I call them scone.

MORGAN: Right.

PINSKY: You've schooled me that I would be seen as somehow under classed.

MORGAN: You would be. I'm afraid it's very much a sconn.

PINSKY: Thank you.

MORGAN: The queen would say sconn.


PINSKY: For the record, I think it's funny but I don't --

MORGAN: Queen of England and it is English we're talking about.


MORGAN: You say scone.

PINSKY: There it is.

MORGAN: So there's a sconn. This, apparently, let's get this calorie counts of these, is 460 calories.


MORGAN: The muffin is 360 calories. I mean, these are a huge amount of calories for what I thought was just a little snack on the way to work.

PINSKY: No, it depends. People -- listen, my dietician, I work with while I was saying, people think they're doing something healthy when they get that brand muffin but it's 400 calories.

MORGAN: Right.

PINSKY: And yes, carbohydrates are loaded with calories. These things -- there are ways to do it without -- here's the bottom line, though. We thought that by putting the calories on these items that people would have a less of a tendency to order high --

MORGAN: Does that work?

PINSKY: Does not work.

MORGAN: Well, you see, I'm not sure about this.

PINSKY: No, the data is now out.

MORGAN: The data may not work at the moment but when I go into Whole Foods down here, for example, I now do battered into submission by various personal trainers.

PINSKY: I do --

MORGAN: I do look at calorie counts.

PINSKY: I do, too.

MORGAN: And I reject things if they're too high.

PINSKY: You say sconn, as opposed to scone.


PINSKY: You know what I mean? You're not every man and most of us cannot withstand our habits. And as I said about Weiner and everybody else, change is difficult. Changing our dietary habits, I think it's an excellent idea. I think everyone agrees we must continue down this path.

MORGAN: Yes, I would (INAUDIBLE) you say that --

PINSKY: Because it gives people a chance. It gives people a chance to be good with their diet. If you are just looking at the yummy stuff, you ain't got a chance.

MORGAN: I think we should banish the sconn.

PINSKY: From America?

MORGAN: I'm not getting 460 calories. I bet they'll have a Big Mac.

PINSKY: Well --

MORGAN: You got a coffee there.


MORGAN: You have a grande nonfat misto.

PINSKY: Yes. Which is pretty good.

MORGAN: This is a ridiculous name. But that's 70 calories.

PINSKY: That's right.

MORGAN: I would go, obviously, for a good old fashioned cup of tea, grande tea with half and half, 210 calories. And what struck me was, apparently a grande black cup of coffee with no milk is 5 calories.

PINSKY: That's right.

MORGAN: So that's the trick, is to go in, think about having the sconn, the muffin and the tea and in fact, have a grande black cup of coffee.


MORGAN: And then skip the gym.

PINSKY: And -- and -- no. And --

MORGAN: I'm working this all out. This is the perfect recipe.

PINSKY: Black coffee will suppress your appetite a little bit, too. And so it's actually quite a good strategy to be doing that. But the problem is we have to say no to the yummy. We have to be disciplined in doing this. We have to get accustomed --

MORGAN: But I like the yummy, Dr. Drew. It's all very well, you're saying no to the yummy but I mean, you take the yummy out of life, what are you left with?

PINSKY: Listen, your point is well taken. I agree with you but I --


But I think it -- this gives us a chance. We have a problem in this country. You -- you know, you would see it wherever you go. We now are at a time when people have to ride around on scooters. We have to have lifts for everything because we have let this roll out of control.

MORGAN: Right.

PINSKY: And it's a major issue, we have diabetes and hypertension as a result of all the obesity. And this gives people a fighting chance. I mean I think we ought to have it in other places, too, where people can see --

MORGAN: I think it's another good idea by Howard Schultz. The calorie count at Starbucks, he's a very smart guy and I' applaud him to do. I'll just never eat a sconn again.

Dr. Drew.

PINSKY: Thank you, sir.

MORGAN: Great to see you.

PINSKY: Always.

MORGAN: Coming next, gone to pot. America's obsession for marijuana. Should smoking marijuana be legal? Patrick Kennedy has had his own struggles with addiction. He tells me what changed his mind about cannabis. It's coming next.



JANUARY THOMAS, MOTHER AND MARIJUANA USER: Mothers, people, parents every day take Vicodin or medications to help cure their pain or for anxiety, insomnia. For me, cannabis is a medication. I know my typical dosage, it's weighed out, I know how to space it out, just like someone would take Tylenol.


MORGAN: One of the Beverly Hills pot moms so interviewed on Friday. They use cannabis because it makes them better parents they claim and deals with pain and anxiety and so on. They and many others want pot to be legalized?

But should it be? That's what we're talking about in our series "Gone to Pot, America's Marijuana Obsession."

With me is now former congressman, Patrick Kennedy, co-founder of One Mind for Research, also Kevin Sabet, he's the director of the Drug Policy Institute of the University of Florida and the author of "Reefer Sanity," and Neill Franklin, a retired police major and executive director of Law Enforcement against Prohibition or LEAP, and Dr. Drew Pinsky.

Stay with me, because why would I get rid of you?


Contentious issue.

PINSKY: By the way, I thought Nancy Grace had it going with tot mom. But pot moms.

MORGAN: Pot moms.

PINSKY: Now you're really --

MORGAN: Pot moms.

And, Patrick Kennedy, let me start with you. Because you at one stage in your life were in support of legalizing marijuana for medical purposes. Now you change your mind. Why?

PATRICK J. KENNEDY, CO-FOUNDER, ONE MINE FOR RESEARCH: Well, because I found out the facts and the facts are my initial thinking was like most Americans. I didn't think it was any big deal. Frankly, I thought people who had cancer or some medical need, every member of my family has had cancer, so I wouldn't begrudge them using something to mitigate the effects of chemotherapy, for example, but then I saw from looking at it further and I was asked to be on the National Institutes of Drug Abuse Board with Nora (INAUDIBLE), and I really learned the science, Piers. And when I learned the truth about the impact of us going down this road towards legalization, it really occurred to me that my original position was wrong. And I hope that anybody who has the position, if they see the facts and they see they were wrong they will admit it. I admit it. I was wrong to initially think that there was, you know, something harmless about medical marijuana, because now what I've seen is that there is a commercial industry behind this medical marijuana.

Soon to be moving down the track as it has in Washington, Colorado, become fully legalized and I worry that my fight has been for mental health and against addiction and trying to treat addiction but the best way to treat addiction is prevention. And what I really worry about with this reducing the kind of harm, perception of harm of marijuana which is what's really out there now, thanks to all this movement towards legalization, that more people will use, Piers, and if more people use like I did when I was a teenager, nine out of 10 addicts, which I became, started when they were teenagers, and one no one can argue to me --



KENNEDY: -- that this move will increase the number of young people who will end up using this because they don't think it's any big deal because of this notion that it's medical --


KENNEDY: I think that's a dangerous notion.

MORGAN: Let me bring in -- let me bring in Dr. Drew here. Because, you know, when we did the show on Friday. I find it fascinating the arguments for and against. Sanjay Gupta, who's seen as a very respected medical guy, he's very firmly, look, there is no evidence that he's seen that marijuana is any more harmful than alcohol or tobacco, and on that basis, why should it be treated differently?

PINSKY: But that's a bizarre argument. To me that's where -- wherever hits the road on all this stuff is that, well, if you want to look at a bad drug, the drugs that have the most serious impact on the health of this country, a bad drug, alcohol and cigarettes are bad drugs. Now the fact that they're legal doesn't make them any less good, any more good. They are still bad. So the question is, do we want to throw another one into that that could become a problem --

MORGAN: Unless you're prepared, though, as a country, Kevin, to outlaw all cannabis, all alcohol, all tobacco --

PINSKY: Or legalize everything.

MORGAN: Or legalize everything. I mean, to me, I mean I remember -- I touched on this on Friday, but, you know, when I broke a few ribs, I remember getting -- not addicted but I think you would call it dependent, within a four or five weeks because of the excruciating pain to both Vicodin, which I took for the pain, and Ambien for which I was trying to use to sleep.

PINSKY: And by the way, in terms of people dying in this country right now, those classes of drugs are the ones that are killing them.


MORGAN: I was stunned by the power of the --

PINSKY: Doesn't make them bad drugs, though. If you had cancer, they'd be good.

MORGAN: Exactly right. But my point is no one can tell me, from what I experienced then, that marijuana in controlled doses, potentially legalized and therefore the actual substance has not been cut anything unpleasant is any more harmful than those were. Probably a lot less.

SABET: But, Piers, I mean, consistency isn't the highest virtue of public policy. I mean, I think Drew makes a good point, that alcohol and tobacco are actually horrific examples, and I talk about this in "Reefer Sanity", that the legality of those two drugs are -- is no argument for marijuana to be legal.

Actually, it's an argument to keep marijuana illegal. We have big tobacco right now. And the liquor lobby. I worked in Washington. We saw their influence. They target kids, frankly they target minorities, they make sure that they go after the ones that are addicted.

PINSKY: Are those -- are those limbs, are those organizations going to pick up cannabis?

SABET: Well, that's the issue. There is already evidence that they will.

MORGAN: But -- you've already removed my life anything yummy, the sconns have to go, right? Now you want to take away my cigar that I have every three months. Want to take away my (INAUDIBLE) I like to drink in the evening. What am I left with?

SABET: I didn't say that.

PINSKY: Your bong.


SABET: Alcohol has a long history of widespread accepted use in our culture, dating back before the Old Testament. Marijuana is not -- does not have that kind of widespread history, so I don't see why just because alcohol is legal, marijuana will be. I could care less if your -- those marijuana moms who are, you know, net worth a couple of million dollars are smoking, you know, marijuana on the weekdays. This isn't about them.

This is actually about kids or people vulnerable for addiction, one in six kids who try pot will become addicted. You see them every day in your treatment center.

PINSKY: We see a lot of marijuana addiction. We also see -- what we didn't know is that the effects, long-term effects on the developing brain are much more substantial than I ever thought.

SABET: That's right.

PINSKY: The research has shown it.

MORGAN: And also --

PINSKY: But they're not going to -- listen. They're not going to legalize it for under 18, though. Let's not --

SABET: No, they're not but alcohol and tobacco are much more accessible --

MORGAN: Sanjay -- Sanjay Gupta --


Right. Sanjay Gupta made the point that actually below 25 years of age --

SABET: That's right.

MORGAN: -- before the brain is completely fully formed, it can be more harmful.

SABET: That's right. Exactly. IQ is huge. The long-term impact on IQ.

MORGAN: Well, I've heard from you three killjoys, so after the break, we're going to come back with Neill Franklin who will put the case for the defense of legalizing marijuana.

I'll be with you, don't worry.


MORGAN: Back now with the heated debate over legalizing pot. With me again, Patrick Kennedy, Kevin Sabet, and Neill Franklin and Dr. Drew Pinsky.

Now, let's turn to Neill Franklin because he spent 34 years on the front line fighting the war on drugs. Did it work and are you in favor of legalizing cannabis?

NEILL FRANKLIN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF LEAP: Piers, obviously it did not work and it's not working now. Look, Law Enforcement against Prohibition nor I are part of some huge conglomerate that wants to legalize pot for money. We're a group of volunteers, thousands of volunteers, we've spent our careers on the front lines with the war on drugs. We have decimated communities, mainly poor communities and black communities, you know, and it's time for a change. Don't get me wrong. I feel for what Mr. Sabet and Mr. Kennedy are saying. Obviously it's more effective to educate and to retreat in reducing drug use. Look what we've done with tobacco over the past couple of decades. We've reduced it by 40 -- consumption by about 40 percent. We're not sending anyone to prison, we're not shooting each other in the streets.

And let me talk about prison right now. Our families in the black community have been devastated. One in 9, 1 in 9, that's the number of black children with parents in prison compared to 1 in 57 for white children.

You know, when you look back over to the decades law -- the law enforcement community has exercised these prohibition policies, we've enforced these prohibition policies mainly in poor communities and communities of color. And whether that's by design or whether it's by happenstance, the fact of the matter is that it does exist and it hasn't changed and it won't change.

You know, I'd be curious to find out how -- Mr. Kennedy, how prison helped you beat addiction?

MORGAN: Well, let's ask Patrick Kennedy to answer that very question.

KENNEDY: Let me -- yes, let me thank you, Neill, for your service as a law enforcement officer and agree with you that the war on drugs has become a war on people. I was the author of the Mental Health Parody and Addiction Equity Act. As you know, Neill, we need to treat this as a public health crisis, not a criminal justice issue.

FRANKLIN: Absolutely.

KENNEDY: And I salute you for your debate and bringing this forward. But as you know, Neill, the tobacco industry and the alcohol industry target minority communities.

FRANKLIN: Yes, I agree.

KENNEDY: And to think that if we give the commercial power of big marijuana to these companies that they're not going to target members of your community with the same aggressive marketing that they have with tobacco and alcohol, I think is something that ignores the facts. Now I agree with you --

FRANKLIN: Well, let's learn from the past.

KENNEDY: -- we need to change our policy, but it's not a lock them up or light them up approach. We need an approach based on the public health --


MORGAN: OK. OK. Let me bring in -- let me bring in -- let me bring in Kevin.

OK, let me just bring in Kevin -- (CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: OK. I'll come back to you, Neill.


MORGAN: Kevin, this is the (INAUDIBLE) of this, isn't it? At the moment it's a massive drain on America financially because they're putting all these people in prison completely unnecessarily, ruining families, ruining lives and so on, and a huge expense. Weighed against the power of brand marijuana and that what we know will happen if it's legalized.

SABET: Well, we don't have those --

MORGAN: Which is -- which is less harmful to America's national interest?

SABET: The good news is those aren't our two only options. Because those are both harmful. We have a lot of other options. We need to invest much more in treatment. Much more in drug courts. By the way, drug courts are things that actually happen within the criminal justice system. They get people successfully off that are addicted.

And early and brief interventions. Right now doctors, physicians are not trained in addiction. And less than a third of our medical schools get two weeks of training on addiction, yet we're saying we want to call this a health issue. Let's actually call it a health issue and try these interventions first before we potentially go to something that's irreversible and that will have damage. So the good news is our two options are not legalize and they're also not lock them up. I agree with Neill on incarceration. We need to be reducing incarceration. The best way to do that is treatment and prevention.

MORGAN: Yes. I mean, I'm sort of with you, Drew, just to wrap up, because I'm slightly on the fence about this, but I'm lending myself more to legalizing because I think it's better than the alternative.


PINSKY: We'll find out, we'll find out what the implications are. We're studying it carefully.

MORGAN: Dr. Drew, Patrick Kennedy, Kevin Sabet and Neill Franklin, thank you all very much.

We're going to keep going over this on the show, so we'll have you all back and debate it all over again, because it's something everyone in America is talking about.

And we'll be right back after this break.


MORGAN: That's all for us tonight. Anderson Cooper's CNN special, "Self-Defense or Murder, The George Zimmerman Trial" starts right now.