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Report: NSA Spied on 35 World Leaders; Female Refs Make History at College Game; Favre Admits Memory Loss Post NFL Career; A Touching Touchdown in Texas; Barney's Accused of Racial Profiling; FDA: Restrict Vicodin, Similar Drugs; Woman, Stabbed 32 Times, "Forgives" Attacker
Aired October 25, 2013 - 14:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Bottom of the hour, I'm Brooke Baldwin. The White House in damage control as the laundry list of U.S. spy targets keeps on growing, Mexico, Brazil, France, Germany, you have these 35 world leaders. They are demanding answers over U.S. intelligence activities on their turf.
And now Spain is summoning the U.S. ambassador to do some explaining as reports are surfacing that Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel had her private cell phone tapped. Today, European leaders met in Brussels, unanimous in their condemnation saying the allegations, and I'm quoting, "have severely shaken diplomatic relations," and now the new layer today, these celebrities joining the chorus in these ads, telling the NSA, get out of our business.
DANIEL ELLSBERG: Revelations that have emerged in the past few months from whistle blower Edward Snowden and others --
PHIL DONAHUE: Have painted a disturbing picture of widespread suspicion of surveillance of American citizens.
MAGGIE GLYLLENHAAL: Including audio, video, photographs, documents, chat logs, and e-mails.
OLIVER STONE: Every American is at risk for getting caught up in the NSA dragnet.
JOHN CUSACK: Including average citizens not suspected of a crime.
WIL WHEATON: We also learned of the large scale collaboration with telecom giants, internet companies and service providers.
STONE: Nixon's crimes predated widespread internet use by decades.
CUSACK: The tools for surveillance have never been more powerful and the threat to our civil liberties has never been greater.
WHEATON: It's everything you use the internet for.
STONE: History tells us we need to watch watchdogs.
CUSACK: In a surveillance state, democracy itself is dead.
GLYLLENHALL: We need to end mass suspicionless surveillance.
BALDWIN: So they're ticked, but not everyone is. Take a listen to Senator Marco Rubio. He was on CNN today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SENATOR MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: Everyone spies on everybody. I mean, that's just a fact. I mean, and whether they want to acknowledge that publicly or not, and every country has different capabilities, but at the end of the day, if you are a U.S. government official traveling abroad, you are aware that anything you have on your cell phone, your iPad, could be monitored by foreign intelligence agencies.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: So let's debate this, David Sirota, syndicated columnist, radio host and contributor for salon.com and "Huffington Post," and Julie Meyers Wood, the president of Guide Post Solutions and former assistant secretary of Homeland Security. Welcome to both of you. So we just played the two sides here. You heard the celebrities and then you heard Senator Rubio.
David Sirota, you get first at-bat here. Tell me why Senator Rubio says, spying is spying. Everyone is spying. Why is he wrong?
DAVID SIROTA, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST/RADIO HOST: Well, I think he's not wrong that there is obviously foreign intelligence and there's obviously domestic intelligence in the United States. What he's wrong about is to pretend that that's not a big deal, what he's wrong about is to pretend that this should be able to happen completely in secret with very little small "d" democratic oversight by the legislative branch.
We have a situation now where we have had leaked that have come out showing not only is this surveillance happening in a broader way than the Congress even knew, but it is happening domestically is being aimed at part in American citizens. So I think that these ads bring forward an important message, which is that this has gotten completely out of control and that legislators who are in Congress saying, there's nothing to see here, no big deal, they are complicit in creating a surveillance state that violates every tenet of our constitution.
BALDWIN: It got me thinking and talking to some folks today. Here we are, we're supposed to be the most technologically advanced nation, yet it took them two years to find out who the Twitter figure was who was spewing this hate in 140 characters or less. I digress. Do you agree or disagree with David that this is a big deal? JULIE MYERS WOOD, PRESIDENT, GUIDEPOST SOLUTIONS: I think that the video actually raises some important points. It's time to have a serious and intelligent debate. I think there are questions about whether technology has gotten ahead of us and our laws and our policies and we should look at this.
So if celebrities can encourage people to think about this critically and look at this and pay attention to what whistleblowers and members of Congress and law professors have said that's important, but we can't remember that this technology is responsible for stopping more than 12 terror plots. So this technology is important. We just have to think about the right sort of protections.
BALDWIN: You're shaking your head, David. Go ahead.
SIROTA: Yes. I mean, let's be very clear, "ProPublica," the widely respected journalism organization, investigative journalism organization just explored the various assertion that was just made her about terrorist plots. There's absolutely no evidence offered to the public or members of Congress that this kind of mass surveillance has stopped terrorist attacks. It's a ruse. It's a talking point that cuts against the facts that we know, and that is designed to perpetuate a sense of fear that then serves the national security surveillance state.
BALDWIN: This is -- hang on, that's one issue. I really want to get to the other, which is what we're hearing from the European leaders basically saying all of this spying has severely shaken diplomatic relations and the world's perception of the United States. How does the administration, Julie, really just rebuild trust with other nations and these leaders?
WOOD: I think it's going to be very difficult. We would hope that our ambassadors have spoken to the world leaders ahead of these announcements and the president has spoken to them, and we have thought about how we can move forward. It's very difficult to think about how some of these world leaders can have complete trust in the United States with some of these allegations. So I do think that's going to be a diplomatic challenge.
But let me say, we have to move beyond talking points and think about what are we doing to protect our country and are we going to have a full and frank discussion about what the best things are? I think that's what the Senate is looking at doing now in this new bill that they're proposing.
BALDWIN: Got to wrap it there. Julie Myers Wood and David Sirota, thank you both very much.
SIROTA: Thank you.
BALDWIN: And have to wonder what an old-school linebacker, you know, Dick Butkus comes to mind, got to wonder what a guy like Dick Butkus might say if he found himself flagged for unnecessary roughness from a referee wearing a bra, because that's where we're headed here. Here is Andy Scholes with today's "Bleacher Report." ANDY SCHOLES, "BLEACHER REPORT": Hi, Brooke. It was a historic night in Alabama Thursday as four women referees took the field for the Miles College football game. The female refs had worked plenty of NCAA games, but before tonight, there had never been this many in one game. Women have been a part of the NFL's officiating development program for a while now, and David Coleman, director of officiating, said it won't be long before a female is working in the NFL.
Trending right now, Brett Favre now says he's not coming out of retirement to play in the NFL again, and concussion-related symptoms are one of the reasons why. In an ESPN radio interview yesterday, Favre said while he has a good memory, he doesn't remember his daughter playing youth soccer one summer. He said not remembering that is very scary for him. He also said God only knows the toll concussions have put on his health.
Here's one of the most touching touchdowns you'll ever see. Tyler Buff from Texas was born with club feet and a brain malfunction that left him unable to speak. He's had several surgeries just to make walking possible, and his dream was to score a touchdown for his middle school over their rival. This week, both schools got together and made that dream come true.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I told him you have to go. You know, don't go down. You get all the way to the end zone.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When things like this come out of the tough times, it makes it easier to get through them because you see the light at the end of the tunnel.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHOLES: He scored a 40-yard touchdown and spiked the ball. He was so excited. He forgot to do his happy dance in the end zone. That will do it for your "Bleacher Report." Brooke, back to you.
BALDWIN: Happy dance. Andy Scholes, thank you very much.
Coming up next, have you heard rapper, businessman, Jay-Z, he is partnering with high end, New York department store, Barney's, who by the way, is being accused of racism. And now, critics are calling on Jay-Z to bow out. Should he? That's next.
BALDWIN: Controversial case of racial profiling in New York and this involves one of the biggest signature retailers in the city, Barney's New York. So this boutique is accused of profiling some of its black customers, allegedly seeking police on them because they suspected they bought merchandise with fake credit cards. So "Showbiz Tonight" anchor, A.J. Hammer joins me here first as CNN political commentator, Marc Lamont Hill, but A.J., to you first, what is going on?
A.J. HAMMER, "SHOWBIZ TONIGHT" ANCHOR: Well, Barney's, of course, Brooke, is a staple for the rich and maims, but now they're facing a lawsuit from a 19-year-old who said he was racially profiled and detained by police after buying a belt at the store. He said he was handcuffed and taken into police custody while the police verified that his card was legitimate, and at a separate press conference that just wrapped in New York City, another customer says she was discriminated against after she purchased a $2,500 purse.
Now she said she was also accused of credit card fraud although she was never taken into police custody. Barney's has released a statement they are saying they have reviewed the first statement, and it's clear that no employee was involved in pursuit of any action with the individual other than the cell. They also say they have no tolerance for any form of discrimination. They have a history of supporting human rights, and there's pressure start to build against the store.
It certainly is and has been for years a favorite of celebrities. In fact, one of our affiliates actually just caught model Tyson Beckford as he was walking out of Barney's New York and they asked him about the story. I want to play for you what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TYSON BECKFORD, SUPERMODEL: Because I mean, you might have a black president, but you're still going to be followed by security. It happens in Macy's. You can't single out Barney's. Even Wal-Mart, it will happen to you. It's just -- I don't know. When you're looking at us, the other guy is getting away doing the bad stuff, and it's sad, it really is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAMMER: It's so sad to know that this may still go on, Brooke. Obviously as the story gets more traction, especially being a favorite shopping spot of celebrities, you can expect more people to be speaking out.
BALDWIN: So then, A.J., and Mark, let me bring you in for this. The story pivots to Jay-Z, he has this big line coming out. Critics coming forward, going to launch a line at Barney's, will Blue Ivy be racially profiled when she purchased her first designer bag? Marc, do you think Jay-Z should yank the line?
MARC LAMONT HILL, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I'm not sure he should yank the line just yet. I think what he should do though is absolutely leverage his star power and his influence to make Barney's be responsible on this. Now of course, he has the option of doing nothing, and many celebrities do nothing in the face of social injustice. Jay-z has been a very silent, but strong contributor to social justice movements for a long time.
Sometimes he gets criticized like people like Harry Belafonte said he doesn't do enough. That's a different argument. Right now, he has the opportunity to do something positive. I don't think he should say I will pull the line if there's not a public apology, a public investigation, training for the staff, and also an acknowledgment that racial profiling is not OK.
And also obviously, treating the people who are mistreated appropriately by indemnifying them in whatever way makes sense. But ultimately, he has to do something here.
BALDWIN: So that's the message, if he doesn't yank the line and maintains what he plans to do around the holiday season, and you say Barney's meantime, given what everything that A.J. just reported, Barney should definitely do a public mea culpa?
HILL: They should do a public mea culpa, regardless, but again, corporations don't have feelings, they have interests. They tend to do things when it's in their interest to do them and their interests are often pushed by celebrities, by consumers who decide they're not going to shop there, by picket lines.
Al Sharpton just said he hopes New York hasn't turned into a city that it has replaced stop and frisk with shop and frisk. If there's the sense that Barney's the place. Now they're in trouble, so they're going to have to do something. I hope Jay-Z pushes them by saying if you don't play ball correctly, I'm leaving.
BALDWIN: We'll see what he does. Marc Lamont Hill, A.J. Hammer, thanks guys very much.
Coming up next right here in the United States, one person dies every 19 minutes from a prescription drug overdose. So what is the government doing? They want to tighten control over some of the most commonly used meds. Bob Forrest from "Celebrity Rehab" is going to weigh in on whether this will work at all next.
BALDWIN: Got a toothache, your back hurt, how your doctor prescribes common pain killers like Vicodin, for example, that may soon change. The FDA wants to clamp down on drugs that combined hydrocodone, a highly addictive pain killer with other ingredients. Here's a number for you, 19 minutes, every 19 minutes, just think about this, one person in the U.S. dies from prescription drug overdose.
The FDA may soon now reclassify Vicodin, Loratab, similar drugs scheduled to narcotics putting them in the same category as morphine and Adderall so patients would have to get written prescriptions from doctors and refills would be banned.
I want to go straight to addiction specialist, Bob Forrest in Los Angeles. Bob, you're a recovering addict. We were just chatting about this in the commercial break because you say opioids create this whole addict. Why is this particular kind of drug so tough to kick?
BOB FORREST, ADDICTION SPECIALIST: Well, I always say in the '80s, the whole population of addicts that were being treated in chemical dependency units all over America knew what they were doing was wrong. We were buying illicit drugs off the street, using it dangerously. It was hard enough to get us the message across that abstinence and sobriety is the only answer. With the prescription drug tsunami that we have been dealing with the last 10 or 15 years, the addict doesn't even think what they're doing is wrong. They think they need this medicine. A doctor is telling them they need this medicine. So it throws a monkey wrench into our process of trying to help them get off.
BALDWIN: What do you think of this monkey wrench in what the FDA may be doing? Because I know you're saying this could be a turning point for prescription drug abuse. But with the tsunami of prescription drug abuse, when there's a will, there's a way. I mean, people are addicts for a reason. Do you think this will help?
FORREST: I think it's a beginning of help and a beginning of waking up to this problem that's been created in the last 10 or 15 years with particularly with the overprescribing of opiates. What needs to be looked at is how we look at pain and how we measure pain. Everybody has been to the hospital and they, you know, have little pictures of what's your pain level. That's inevitably where this needs to go, how do you address pain in America?
BALDWIN: It's interesting --
FORREST: Because we're not doing a good job of it.
BALDWIN: It's interesting you brought it up. I read something that our own Dr. Sanjay Gupta, this is what he wrote in a 2012 editorial. It's easier for a doctor to write a prescription than to explore other effective options to combat pain and it is easier for patients to take those prescription pills than to search for alternatives themselves. Both of those things must absolutely change. So where do the changes begin in addition to what the FDA is now proposing?
FORREST: Well, it has to start with federal guidelines and it has to start with the medical professional itself. I think this is the beginning. I'm excited about this. I think this is the beginning of the beginning. Mary bono is a big proponent of all this, too, and she's a hero in Washington, bringing this to the public attention, the government attention. And so inevitably, we're going to solve this problem like we always do. The question is, you know, how to do it, and who is involved in doing it.
BALDWIN: It's interesting what you're saying. It is sort of a different me mentality. You get them from your doctor and you take them and you don't think what you're taking is necessarily wrong, and that needs to change. Bob Forrest, always a pleasure. Thank you so much, sir.
FORREST: Thanks for having me.
BALDWIN: Coming up next, a woman stabbed 32 times by her boyfriend. She lives to tell about it and not only that, she has forgiven him. Don't miss her story, next.
BALDWIN: At the sentencing of this man who stabbed this Florida woman 32 times, she showed her healing has gone way beyond her wounds. Melissa Dohme told the court she forgives her high school sweetheart after he did this to her. He left her bleeding in the middle of a street. This was last year in Clearwater, Florida. You see her here in the hospital.
This week, Robert Burton received life in prison without parole for that knife attack. Dohme described to the judge how she could hear her teeth crack and felt each and every one of the 32 stab wounds from this ex-boyfriend of hers who also talked at this sentencing.
MELISSA DOHME, STABBED 32 TIMES BY EX-BOYFRIEND: Twenty eight stabs through my face, my neck, my arms and hands, 29, 30, 31, and finally, the vicious attack was coming to an end as Robert's hand came down with the blade with a final stab wound, number 32. Robert left me lying in the road. The horrific fight was over and he drove away, leaving me alone to die. I didn't get the chance to walk away with 10 or 20 stabs, but only until he believed I was finally dead and that my life was taken. It took 32 stabs for him to stop.
ROBERT BURTON JR., CONVICTED ATTACKER SENTENCED TO LIFE: I'm here. I destroyed the trust and love of those I care about deeply due to my depression and alcoholism. I ask and pray for forgiveness from both Ms. Dohme and her family as well as from my family and friends. I hope that I can move forward and I know that there is no forgiving what happened here, and I can't even imagine what I put her through. And I will have to live with that forever.
DOHME: Robert, I forgive you for coming to my house and attempting to murder me. Forgiveness is a sign of letting go. Today, I'm letting go of any memories, pain, hatred, I'll never forget all I have been through, but I'll never look back and be upset. I'll always have these physical scars to remind me forever what happened, but I'm beautiful and it will never take away my happiness.