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Fallout Begins after Hawaii's False Missile Alert; Condoleezza Rice's Comments on North Korea Overtures to South Korea; Liam Neeson: "Me Too" Movement Becoming "Witch Hunt"; Hero Firefighter Catches Child Thrown from Burning Building. Aired 2:30-3p ET

Aired January 15, 2018 - 14:30   ET


[14:30:00] JEMAR TISBY, PODCAST CO-HOST, PASS THE MIC: I remember this frozen moments when we were about to leave the room, I'm wondering, what do I take with me if everything is destroyed? So one thing I picked up was my wedding ring which I think was a good choice. We headed out but there was a moment of shared solidarity in crisis where people you would just pass by without speaking a word was making eye contact, smiling, joking. A psychologist friend of mine calls it "trauma laughter" to cope with a stressful situation in a light manner. We were all saying, hey, I hope we survive and live. Right afterwards, folks were saying, hey, how are you? Everyone's like, well, we didn't die, so it's a good day.

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Totally surreal. Here's my last question because the worry is what if this actually happens and it's real, right? Whether in Hawaii or who knows where. Would you believe it? Would you take it seriously?

TISBY: I would most certainly take it seriously. I would move as swiftly as I could to seek safety and shelter. It's caused me to do more research on nuclear preparedness. Unfortunately, the threat of a nuclear attack seems much more realistic these days. I remember thinking in that moment how strangely calm I felt and I'm thankful for my Christian faith. Not that I wanted to die. I knew if I did Heaven awaited me. It puts everything in perspective both from a here and now standpoint about what we do in case of a nuclear attack but in terms of sorting ourselves and getting ourselves in order -- relationships with family, friends. It gives a sense of urgency to every day as a gift and how to use it to make the world a better place.

BALDWIN: My goodness. What a range of emotions to go through.

Jemar, glad you're OK. Welcome back home to Memphis. Good to have you on. Thank you so much.

I want to continue the conversation here --

TISBY: Thank you.

BALDWIN: Thank you -- with Admiral John Kirby.

Admiral, just listening to the conversation, can't even begin to imagine what that would have been like for 38 long minutes. How significant was this alert failure from a national security standpoint and what does it reveal about our preparedness or lack thereof?

REAR ADM. JOHN KIRBY, CNN MILITARY & DIPLOMATIC ANALYST: I don't think Americans should take away any concern about the missile defense preparedness in the region. The intelligence community has a complex, integrated set of defense, in-depth capabilities there in the Asia- Pacific. In fact, it is so capable that within minutes of the alert going out Pacific Command was able to quickly ascertain there was nothing to it and put out a press statement within 10 to 15 minutes of the original alert. I don't think Americans should worry. Missile defense isn't perfect, I'm not saying that, but it is very good, very capable, and the military is reassessing.

That said, it raises concerns about the process controls in place, the procedures from a local and statewide perspective in terms of how they connect to federal authorities in the military, get proper information and get it out in a reliable way. I would hope that other states, in addition to Hawaii, are taking a look at their own systems now to make sure the process controls are properly in place.

BALDWIN: Everyone was like, where are the shelters? There aren't enough shelters.


BALDWIN: It uncovered a huge issue at least for folks there.

To North Korea, Admiral, listen to what former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told David Axelrod on "The Axe Files." This is what she thinks about Kim Jong-Un's recent overtures to South Korea.


CONDOLEEZZA RICE, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: I think Kim Jong-Un is turning out, much more so than I thought, to be actually pretty clever. The approach to the South Koreans was clever. The decision to go to the Olympics is clever.

I think he is more isolated than his father was. Certainly, more reckless. I wonder sometimes if he really believes it when he says, "I can destroy the United States" because anybody who tells him something he doesn't want to hear seems to get killed.


BALDWIN: What do you think of her use of the word clever? Do you agree he's clever?

KIRBY: I do. He was smart to take advantage of, knowing the south wanted to have a safe and secure, successful Olympics, to take advantage of that, plus their own concerns about President Trump, take advantage to sit down and have a meeting and to discuss a delegation going to the Olympics. That was smart.

Plus we have known he would love to drive a wedge between the Republic of Korea, the South, and the United States and our alliance. This provided, I think, a sort of way to sort of create that wedge. I don't think it will happen. I was in favor of the talks over the Olympics and I think this is a good thing in general. I wasn't concerned we weren't at the tables for those discussions. Going forward if the talks lead to more substantive issues about the military situation, the security situation, it's critical the United States be more involved.



Admiral Kirby, thank you so much.

[14:35:02] KIRBY: My pleasure.

BALDWIN: Coming up on CNN, his comments are raising eyebrows. Act Liam Neeson saying the "Me Too" movement is becoming a bit of a "witch hunt." We'll discuss next.


BALDWIN: Actor Liam Neeson in one breath praising Hollywood's "Me Too" movement and, at the same time, accusing it of creating a bit of a "witch hunt," his words. He made the comments during an interview with an Irish broadcast network. He admitted to being on the fence about allegations against fellow actor, Dustin Hoffman. Here he was.


LIAM NEESON, ACTOR: Yes. There is a bit of a witch hunt happening.


NEESON: There's some people -- famous people being suddenly accused of touching some girl's knee or something and, suddenly, they are being dropped from their program or something.

But there is a movement happening.


NEESON: And --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's got to be healthy to have --

NEESON: It's healthy and it is across every industry.


[14:40:11] BALDWIN: All right. Let's talk about this with these ladies, Nischelle Turner, CNN contributor and co-host of "ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT," and Chloe Melas, CNN entertainment reporter, and Cori Murray, entertainment director for "Essence" magazine.

Nischelle, you're there in Hollywood so let me start with you.


BALDWIN: I love hearing from men. We need to hear from more men with regard to the movement. I wanted to say that first. Calling it a witch hunt. How is that playing where you are?

TURNER: Not well. Full stop. Not well.


TURNER: You know, there are a couple of schools of thought here. I think what he was trying to say was one thing. I think he did it inarticulately. It was kind of mansplaining. He worries about the fact that can the pendulum swing too far one way in this "Me Too" movement. Sometimes things that may have been innocent or not thought of or understood, can they be lumped in with the sexual harassment issue we are dealing with Harvey Weinstein. It came off as, oh, you know, we are accusing men who really didn't do anything and that's a problem which of course we know is ridiculous. So in that sense of the word we should see, Liam, chill, just chill.


BALDWIN: I see you shaking your head. What are you thinking?

CHLOE MELAS, CNN ENTERTAINMENT REPORTER: Because this is not about touching a woman's knee. I keep hearing from people, this is not about telling a woman you look pretty, or I like your dress. You know what sexual harassment is. If you don't, ask a friend, ask your mom, read your H.R. handbook. When you break it down, it almost sounds belittling where you take this entire "Me Too" movement and say, well, we all have to be so censored now. Why can't with be ourselves? That's not what this is about.

BALDWIN: I want to hear from you, but let me get more sound and we'll chat.

Cori, Condoleezza Rice was interviewed on CNN on "The Axe Files." David was asking her about "Me Too." She said the movement is a good thing, but she warns about potential setbacks as well. Here's Condoleezza Rice.


RICE: I don't know a woman alive who hasn't had somebody say or do something that was inappropriate, at best, and aggressive, at worst.

I think that the movement to expose these circumstances is a good thing. Let's clear the air about it. I do think we have to be a little bit careful. Let's not turn women into snowflakes. Let's not infantilize women.

And what I don't want is for it to get to a place that men start to think, well, maybe it's just better not to have women around.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BALDWIN: I have heard that from some men. That's a fear from these women and speaking up and allegations. I heard one guy say, we don't want to hire female summer interns because we'll afraid we'll get turned into P.R.

CORI MURRAY, ENTERTAINMENT DIRECTOR, ESSENCE MAGAZINE: I don't like hearing that because, again, giving the power back to the men. She said maybe we don't need to work for male-run companies. Maybe we start our own or work for women like Eva Duvernais, who said this will not happen in my environment or on my set.

I do take pause with what Condoleezza Rice was saying. I can get in the old school way what she's trying to say, but the whole thing, you don't want men not to work with you, we have gone beyond that. Time's Up.

BALDWIN: A lot of people get in line for the Eva train.

Nischelle, what are you thinking?

TURNER: I agree with Cori as well. I understand her sentiment. She's saying we don't want men to exclude us. But what the women that started the Time's Up movement and the "Me Too" movement are saying is no, no, no, we are taking our power back with our unified voices and with being powerful women now and not taking that, well, we don't want to deal with you as an answer. You take it back and say, you will work with us and you will hear us. While I do understand her sentiment, I don't subscribe to that way of thinking.

BALDWIN: Yes. Lastly, I wanted to get this in. We talked about last week, the whole Mark Wahlberg, making a $1.5 million for 10 days of reshoots, when everyone else, including Ridley Scott and Michelle Williams, were making $80 per diem, which is about $1,000 for the reshoots. Everyone said, why is he getting all this money? You called it. You were on the show end of last week and --

MELAS: I said, wouldn't it be great if he donated the salary to Time's Up. And he did.


MELAS: I won't take all the credit here guys, but what I --

TURNER: Take the credit.

[14:45:07] MELAS: Yes, Nischelle, I will.

I think it comes down to that it shows this is not just lip service. Hollywood is trying to take action and effect change. What Mark Wahlberg did is powerful to donate the $1.5 million and for the agency to donate $500,000 to Time's Up. It shows, look, we want things to change and it is inching the pay gap closer together. I hear people saying celebrities are wearing black to the Golden Globes, who cares, how will that really change things? Time's Up has raised over $16 million as of today. That's action.

BALDWIN: It's money, not just for famous women --


MURRAY: For a legal defense fund for people across industries, which is a really great thing.

One thing I will give Liam Neeson credit in mentioning the female laborers and the discrimination and sexual harassment for them. I will give him that small point. But Time's Up will be touching a lot of industries and women, not just entertainers.

BALDWIN: And having men and women speaking up is crucial.

Ladies, thank you.


BALDWIN: Coming up next --


BALDWIN: -- what we are learning about Democrats and their plans to publicly censure President Trump over his vulgar remarks last week and what that would entail.

But next, a child thrown from a burning building -- watch this -- into the arms of a firefighter below. The story behind these dramatic images, next.





[14:51:02] BALDWIN: Welcome back. I've got to show some video. You will have blinked twice and not believe how incredible this firefighter is. This is a miraculous catch of this young child thrown from a third-floor balcony. Wait -- we'll play it again. Two-alarm fire. Here you go. Unbelievable.

Two alarm fire, engulfed this apartment complex in suburban Atlanta, and flames closing in. No time to wait for the rescue ladder to get fully in place. This as desperate parents of the child put their faith in this female firefighter. Watch for yourself.






BALDWIN: Wow. And the firefighter who made that miracle catch has quite the back story of her own. Captain Jackie Peckrul is a bit of a super mom. She is the mother of triplets.


CAPT. JACKIE PECKRUL, CAPTAIN, DEKALB COUNTY FIRE DEPARTMENT: My plan was to actually get up on balcony with them to help them get on the ladder and have somebody else assist them down. But I got about halfway up and here comes the baby down to my arms. I was thinking, don't drop it.


I don't really feel like a hero. I don't think any of us do. It's our job. I couldn't be anything else. And it makes me a better mom and being mom it makes me a better firefighter.


BALDWIN: My goodness.

One of the firefighters who was on the scene and saw all of it, Captain Eric Jackson, Dekalb County Fire.

It is so nice to have you on.

First of all, is the family OK?

ERIC JACKSON, FIREFIGHTER, DEKALB COUNTY FIRE DEPARTMENT: The family is doing fine. All things considered they are doing fine. I would like to say, in the video, that's actually Captain Scott Stoup who made that dramatic catch. But right next to Captain Stoup, out of view of the helmet camera was Captain Jackie Peckrul, who made just a harrowing a catch as Captain Stoup did --


BALDWIN: Forgive us. We're confusing two miraculous catches of two children being tossed down. That is incredible for firefighters and the department.

Did you see all of it for yourself? And what did both of those firefighters say to you yourself?

JACKSON: I did not see it myself because the fire came in at 5:26 in the morning. I was at home and I was en route. The only people that witnessed it were the firefighters there in the helmet camera that captured that video. So it's talking to the FRS, has just been amazing but they didn't expect that. Once Captain Peckrul arrived on scene and began to process putting the fire out, she heard screaming and saw people on the balcony. She very quickly and efficiently told her engineer to grab the ladder and as she was starting to go up the ladder, she gets tossed a blue blanket, just so happened there was a baby inside. She did this on a ladder, not fully secured in. So it was just amazing she was able to keep her balance, hold onto the baby and go back down a ladder and come back up the ladder to retrieve another child and a mother and it was at that time when she saw Captain Stoup down below catch that 5-year-old child being tossed from his dad.

BALDWIN: Catching babies and 5-year-olds and it is amazing.

Thank you so much for joining us - and just please our best to both of your firefighters for just doing what many of us could never ever do. Thank you.

[14:55:05] JACKSON: Thank you so much. Kudos to Dekalb County Fire Rescue. We are the best.

BALDWIN: There you go. You said it yourself.

Appreciate you. Thank you.

Coming up on CNN, President Trump preparing to depart after a long weekend in Mar-a-Lago. Can he avoid a government shutdown, which is set to run out of funding at the end of the week?

And they rose to fame with hits like "Linger" and "Zombie." Next, the sad death of a '90s icon.