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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
George Floyd Laid To Rest After Emotional Final Memorial; The President Reacting Today Attacking The Victim In The Buffalo Video Of Police Shoving A 75-Year-Old Protester; Official: 75 Year-Old Buffalo Protester Shoved By Police Officers Now In Fair Condition; Spike Lee On What Now, What Next For Civil Rights. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired June 9, 2020 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: Right, right and the excited ones are going to vote for him regardless. It's the others that he needs to make inroads with. Thank you so much Jeff Zeleny. Appreciate your time and all of yours. Anderson starts now.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening. George Floyd is at rest tonight and the country that showed him its very best and finally, its very worst is now changing all around him.
After two and a half weeks of worldwide protests and memorial services in Minneapolis, North Carolina and Houston, Mr. Floyd was buried today. In the hour ahead, what may come of his passing.
Dr. Cornel West joins us, so does filmmaker Spike Lee. First the funeral and CNN's Omar Jimenez.
OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): In the final moments before he died, George Floyd called out for his mother who passed away two years ago. Today, he was laid to rest next to her after an emotional funeral in Houston.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All I think about is when he was yelling for momma. And I know how our momma is, she is just right there. She got her hands wide open.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JIMENEZ (voice over): The Fountain of Praise Church was packed with hundreds of mourners. His family dressed in white, paused to promote each other and prayed before the ceremony began.
Floyd was remembered as a man of faith, a brother, an uncle, a father, a friend.
While the ceremony celebrated his life, his death and the movement it sparked was invoked time and time again. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. SHEILA JACKSON LEE (D-TX): The assignment of George Floyd and the purpose will mean there will be no more eight minutes and 46 seconds of police brutality.
REV. AL SHARPTON, CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST: Go on and get your rest now. Go on and see momma now. We're going to fight on. We're going to fight on.
MAYOR SYLVESTER TURNER (D), HOUSTON, TEXAS: We honor him today because when he took his last breath, the rest of us will now be able to breathe. So therefore I, Sylvester Turner, Mayor of the City of Houston hereby proudly proclaim June 9th, 2020 as George Floyd Day in the City of Houston. To God be the glory for the good he has done.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JIMENEZ (voice over): Former Vice President Joe Biden delivered this video message echoing the call for change.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESUMPTIVE DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Now is the time for racial justice. That's the answer we must give to our children when they ask why. Because when there is justice for George Floyd, we will truly be on our way to racial justice in America.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JIMENEZ (voice over): Today's funeral ended days of memorials and public viewings all over the country, but this isn't the end for Floyd's family who vow to keep fighting for justice.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I will miss my brother a whole lot. I want to say to him, I love you and I thank God for giving me my own personal Superman. God bless you all.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (singing): "And I'll take with me the memories, to be my sunshine after the rain. It's so hard to say goodbye to yesterday."
[CHEERING AND APPLAUSE]
COOPER: Do we know what is next for the Floyd family in terms of speaking out in his memory and with the protest?
JIMENEZ: Well, Anderson, part of the energy we have seen here is not just stemming from George Floyd's death. It is about the spark that his death has now created and the push toward long-term changes in police. Now, even with that, we have seen steps taken in places like
Minneapolis and even here in Houston with Mayor Sylvester Turner saying he is going to sign an Executive Order banning the use of chokeholds.
But even with all of that, the family still feels far away from justice. They say that won't come until the officers in this case face convictions and to take from the eulogy they feel if the law is not upheld, police officers will feel as though there are no consequences for committing actions like this, if, again, they do not face the consequences of the justice system.
Even though George Floyd was laid to rest today, his name and legacy doing anything but in the push toward long-term change -- Anderson.
COOPER: Omar Jimenez, thanks very much. And the question now of course is where does this leave us as a country? What possibilities are open to the country that might not have been two weeks ago?
Joining us, Dr. Cornel West, Harvard University Professor in the Practice of Public Philosophy and Professor Emeritus at Princeton. He is also cohosting a new podcast called "The Tight Rope" With Professor Tricia Rose.
COOPER: Dr. West, it is good to see you on this sad day. Just watching the funeral today and hearing the chants of, "We will breathe" outside of the church, I am wondering what was going through your mind and your heart.
DR. CORNEL WEST, PROFESSOR IN THE PRACTICE OF PUBLIC PHILOSOPHY, HARVARD UNIVERSITY: It was a heavy day, my brother. And yet I was buoyed up because I saw in the hearts and minds and souls, not just of the Floyd family, but of the church, of the music, of the preaching a love.
Not one reference to hatred or revenge. It was all about love and justice. It's in the great tradition of the best of black people, a people who have been hated chronically systemically for 400 years, but have taught the world so much about love and how to love.
You saw John Coltrane's "Love Supreme" in that church service. You saw the love of the children in Marvin Gaye's "What is Going On" and Toni Morrison's "Beloved." You saw Mama "Raisin in the Sun" Lorraine Hansberry.
White America ought to give black people a standing ovation. After 400 years of being terrorized, we refuse to create a black version of the Ku Klux Klan. After 400 years of being traumatized, we wanted to be healers. That's Frederick Douglass, that's Martin King, that's Curtis Mayfield, that's Benny Lou Haymoth (ph).
What is it about these black people so thoroughly subjugated that want freedom for everybody? That is a grand gift to the world right in the bowels at the center of American Empire that has enslaved Jim Crow, Jane Crow, lynched them still dishing out the love voice.
That is what I saw in the Floyd family and I was buoyed up. It reminded me of the West family. It reminded me of Irene and Cliff and Cliff -- that's where we come from. Shiloh Baptist Church.
You could put us down, but you're not going to put us down in such a way that we're going to hate you because you've become the point of reference. No, we're going to put a smile on Larcenia's face. That his momma. That is where he is right now.
He is lying right next to Larcenia whose way of engaging the world was embracing it with all of the love. Now, I am not saying we don't have black thugs and gangsters. I am talking about the best of our tradition. Because brother, brother, brother, if we have created a black version of the Ku Klux Klan, there would have been a Civil War every generation. It would tear ourselves in every hood and that is what Brother Trump needs to understand because it looks like he's trying to push us to a race war.
But the good news is, if there was a race war, we have got a whole lot of white brothers and sisters on our side now. That makes a big difference and we've got black folk and red folk and indigenous people and Asians and so forth.
This is a matter of integrity and honesty, a matter of justice and love. They kept it on the high ground.
That was a beautiful thing, but I did break there, brother and I saw those brothers marching in, like to use in the Shiloh Baptist Church, and pick up that coffin and go and walk out. My daughter was there. I couldn't take it, man.
I mean, I've been at this for over 50 years. And yet, I've got to bounce back. And I will bounce back. Because we've got a love that the world can't take away. The world -- white supremacy may make being black a crime, but we refuse to get into the gutter and we are going to go down swinging like Ella Fitzgerald and Muhammad Ali in the name of love and justice.
And we do it for Brother Wyatt, we are doing it for my daughter. We are doing it for the Asians. We are doing it for the whole world. Because that is the only hope of the world and that kind of love is always tragic, comic and cruciform. We have got to get ready to get crucified with that kind of love.
And you have to keep dishing it all generation after generation after generation. The Floyd family lifted up that spiritual moral banner in the midst of a moment in which we've got all of the lies and crimes and be it a cop, The Pentagon or Wall Street or White House or even Congress itself, we know they don't represent the best of this country.
It is just that the best of this country right now seems to be so powerless, but in the streets of our nation, we see this multi-racial, multi-cultural, multi-gender, different sexual orientations and different religions, Jewish brothers and sisters holding up Rabbi Abraham and have their heads up, the Catholics holding up most of the day, the Protestants holding up the coffin and lifting every child and the agnostics and the others holding up the Norman Thomases and Edward Zahids and others.
That was my mixed wresting with what I saw today, my brother.
And I think we've got hope in the form of motion, but we have got to get ready for the backlash. We have got to get ready for the neo fascist clamp down because it is coming. It is coming.
COOPER: Yes. I've had that -- I've got to say, you're -- I've never had the honor of taking one of your classes. But I feel like I'm a student of yours and I've learned lessons every time you speak. And I just think it's --
WEST: No, we're in it together, brother and the beautiful thing about here, Socrates never cries, but Jeremiah does and so does Jesus.
We cry because we care. We're concerned. It is not about political correctness or self-righteousness. We cry because we are not numb on the inside. We don't have a chilliness of soul and a coldness of mind and heart.
We cry because we connect, but then we must have a vision that includes all of us and I have an analysis of power that is honest in terms of the greed, especially at the top. In terms of the hatred, running amok. In terms of corruption, not just the White House and Congress.
Too much churches, too many mosques, too many synagogues and too many universities, too many civic organizations and then the greed in us.
You and I would talk about this all of the time, right? The gangster in us. Because we're wrestling with this day by day and that's why we need each other, my brother.
COOPER: You know, you said something -- I follow you when you're not on my program. I follow you wherever you go and I read what you had to say and you said something a couple of days ago in somebody else's program.
You said, "Can we hold on to integrity, honesty and decency?" And it seems to me, as you said there is a lot of people who have remained silent, who have just been watching this and as you said, there is going to be a backlash and that is something to be prepared for because I think there are a lot of people just waiting on the side lines waiting to kind of start to chip away at this and cause doubt and divide people.
But I think that is so important that at its core, this is about integrity and honesty and decency and fortitude and courage, which are two other things you've spoken a lot about.
WEST: Absolutely. Especially the fortitude and courage. We must have the integrity and honesty and decency, not purity. No one of us are pure and pristine. We all have our spots and our wrinkles as it were.
But it is the courage and the fortitude. That is what is necessary. The backbone. We don't need lukewarm folk. We don't need summer soldiers. We need all season love warriors. That is the tradition that we saw represented in that church, at the spiritual level.
And my dear brother Sharpton, you know, I love brother Sharpton. We come out and save black church traditions and so forth, and we fight all of the time. But we come together and so forth. And he was powerful.
But I always want to connect the police -- fallen police, crimes with the Wall Street power and the Wall Street crimes. We live in a culture in which people feel as if they could do and say anything and get away with it with no accountability and no responsibility.
We saw on Wall Street in terms of all of that insider trading and market manipulation and fraudulent activity and predatorial lending, how many went to jail? Zero.
Trump say anything? Do anything? He thinks he could get away with it. Pentagon can drop drones on precious folk in Yemen and Pakistan and others and think they could get away with it.
We have to have accountability. Our politicians could tell us anything in front of our faces and we know what is going on behind closed doors, they're inside the big money. Just be honest. That is what integrity is.
Malcolm X used to say sincerity is my only credentials, that is why we love Malcolm. We didn't always agree with Malcolm, but he said what he meant and he meant what he said. You see what I mean? That is what we need. We need that in our lives. We need that in our communities. We need that in our civilization and we need that as a critique of the worse of the American Empire, the worst of American white supremacy, the worst of American predatory capitalism and the worst of American patriarchy and the worst of American homophobic and transphobia.
Have you any idea how one loses sight of the humanity of folks? I don't care. It wasn't the Palestinian, Jewish or whatever. It has got to be all the way down.
You know, the English word human comes from the Latin humando which means burial and that is what we saw today.
We saw the humanity, because they were ascribing significance to this precious person in the image of God whose body was now going -- undergoing extinction and his soul ascending and this is what connects us as human beings, and at the deepest level, you see and in many ways we're losing it, but we have got to keep on fighting, my brother. We have got to keep on fighting that.
WEST: So, I salute the Floyd family and I salute all of the people there and we just have to bear witness. But love you though, brother.
COOPER: Love you, too. Thank you, Dr. West. Appreciate it.
We are going to continue the conversation. Later this hour, filmmaker Spike Lee is going to join us. He has made the question of race in America such a central and vital part of his work.
Next, tonight where most people react with horror to this video, police knocking an elderly man to the ground. The President reacting today by attacking the victim. And most Republicans reacted by -- Republican senators, I should say by sticking their heads in the political sand. We're keeping them honest next.
Also, breaking news on the victim, surprising view toward the police who did this to him. Ahead on this program.
COOPER: Given all we've seen since the killing of George Floyd, it is clear and polling bears it out that a substantial cross section of Americans believe this country needs to do better.
Better when it comes to ensuring justice for all, better at making good on Lincoln's promise in his second inaugural to bind up the nation's wounds.
Today, the President who likes to compare himself favorably to Lincoln tore at those wounds. He picked at them.
He did it with charity toward none of the people grieving today and with cruelty toward a 75-year-old protester in Buffalo who is still in the hospital after this.
[VIDEO CLIP PLAYS]
COOPER: That's Martin Gugino lying there, losing consciousness, his blood in the street, pooling around his head. Two Buffalo police officers have been charged with felony assault. The video like that of George Floyd's killing is disturbing, disgusting. The conduct of it indefensible.
Yet, today President Trump tried without any evidence at all to defend it by smearing the victim. Quoting his tweet, "Buffalo protester shoved by police could be an Antifa provocateur. Seventy-five-year-old Martin Gugino was pushed away after appearing to scan police communications in order to blackout the equipment @OANN. I watched. He fell harder than was pushed. Was aiming scanner, could be a setup."
In a moment, a longtime friend of Mr. Gugino and fellow activist will join us give a non-bat crap crazy account of the man he has known for years as well as the social justice causes he supports.
For now though, just so you get the flavor of it, I want to show you a small portion of the actual report on OANN which I had to look up that the President was referring to.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Newly released videos appear to show Gugino using a police tracker on his phone trying to scan police communications during the protest.
The tactic known as skimming is an old trick used by Antifa to locate police officers and plan violent activities by passing the police response. In addition, the 75-year-old who has been referred to as an agitator was supposedly using the technology to blackout police communications.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: The so-called reporter sourced the allegation to a conspiracy theory published by a conservative website, Conservative Treehouse and posted by a person who goes by Sundance.
The President then spread it to more than 80 million people who follow him on Twitter. More than 80 million people got to see that.
The so-called reporter from OANN, according to "The Daily Beast" is a Russian now living in San Diego who also writes for, guess what? The Kremlin owned news wire, "Sputnik."
So, in addition to sowing division and cruelty upon a police brutality victim, the President may also be spreading Russian propaganda. And a reminder, the President has not tweeted anything today wishing Mr. Gugino a speedy recovery, nothing about the loss that people who knew George Floyd are feeling.
Nothing to reassure people that he understands what has moved millions of people of all races to stand up in the middle ever a pandemic all over the globe to make their voices heard.
And he has left the few nonwhite members of his administration with nothing to say on the subject.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BEN CARSON, H.U.D. SECRETARY: I believe you're going to be hearing from the President this week on this topic in some detail. And I would ask you maybe to reserve judgment until after that time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: When Secretary Carson said we're going to be hearing from the President on this, it is unlikely he meant what we saw today, what we actually heard from the President on this.
Or probably, he was referring to the possibility of the President making some sort of or attempting to make some sort of healing address to the nation, which some advisers do not want him to make.
Perhaps because this President is simply not capable of doing this. We just know that. He's not. Remember, he tried two summers ago after a woman was killed as neo-Nazis rallied in Charlottesville, Virginia.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We condemn in the strongest possible term this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence. It has no place in America. And as I have said many times before, no matter the color of our skin, we all live under the same laws. We all salute the same great flag.
And we are all made by the same Almighty God. We must love each other, show affection for each other, and unite together in condemnation of hatred, bigotry and violence.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: So that was August 14th. On the 15th, when he wasn't reading a teleprompter, when he wasn't mouthing someone else's words and expressing his own beliefs in the moment, which seems to be the only time scale the President exists in, the President took a very different tone.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
QUESTION: The neo-Nazis started this.
QUESTION: They killed the person. Heather Heyer's death --
QUESTION: They showed up in Charlottesville -- the protesters --
TRUMP: Excuse me. Excuse me. You had some very bad people in that group, but you also had people that were very fine people on both sides.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Then as now, the President said caused an uproar not just because no one ever thought a President would ever just pop off and defend neo-Nazis carrying Tiki torches, yelling, "Jews will not replace us," and "Blood and soil." But as we've learned and I don't say this with any glee, there is truly no depth that this President will not sink to. He is without shame.
He recently re-tweeted this attack on George Floyd's character in the middle of the protest over George Floyd's death and now having watched a report voiced by what sounds like Russian Siri, he has attacked a man in a hospital bed and time with only a few exceptions his fellow Republicans simply will not condemn in.
I want you to see and hear what they are saying instead. And I want to say they're names before running the sound because I think you need to hear just who couldn't or won't disavow that tweet from the President.
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senator Rick Scott of Florida, Senator John Cornyn of Texas, Senator Kevin Cramer of North Dakota and Senator Mike Braun of Indiana.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The President said that he could be an Antifa provocateur. He said that he fell harder than he was pushed and he questioned if he was set up? Was that appropriate.
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY): Well, as I said, what we've been talking about here in the Senate Republican Conference is what we think is the appropriate response to the events over the last few weeks.
SEN. RICK SCOTT (R-FL): I didn't see it so I'd have to -- I mean, you know, I'm sure that my office will be able to get me a copy of it.
QUESTION: What do you make of the President's tweet this morning? Does the President need to be more cautious?
SCOTT: You know, I saw the -- but, you know, that he had fallen and so -- but --
SEN. KEVIN CRAMER (R-ND): I just saw the tweet and I know nothing of the episode.
SEN. MIKE BRAUN (R-IN): I don't think it should be surprising in general because he tweets a lot.
CRAMER: I just read the tweet but I don't know the reference point.
BRAUN: It doesn't shock me that they come out often.
MCCONNELL: As I said, we are discussing in the Senate Republican Conference what response we think is appropriate to the events of the last two weeks.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I want to apologies if we'd had some technical difficulties, one of the joiners are broadcasting from home. But I want to make sure it won't happen again, but we can't guarantee you. I think Chris is standing by just in case it does.
I want to bring in Keith Giles, who is a friend of Martin Gugino, the man who was pushed by a police in Buffalo and is now in a hospital. Mr. Giles, thanks so much for being with us.
Mr. Gugino, his attorney says that he holds no ill will toward the police officers who did this, which is remarkable sentiment if true. When you heard what the President's tweeted today about your friend, I'm wondering what you thought.
KEITH GILES, FRIEND OF MARTIN GUGINO: Well, I think like everyone else, I was horrified. In fact, I think I -- my reaction was that, you know, when I saw my friend Martin, being the victim of police brutality on that video, that was painful, but this morning, he was the victim of presidential brutality. And that was very, very surreal.
COOPER: The notion that the President is tweeting out something that came from some obscure website from somebody named Sundance, and it was reported by some allegedly news network by somebody who also works for the Russian Sputnik network? I mean, does this make any sense to you at all? I mean, the idea that he works for Antifa -- that your friend works for Antifa and was attempting to scan the police communications. Is that something he does?
GILES: Honestly, if you knew Martin, you would find that to be extremely hilarious. The thing about, you know, I mean, this is really the reason why I felt like I needed to tweet and I had to post a blog post and speak out about this, because, you know, like everyone else, I saw that video of Martin being thrown to the ground.
And quite honestly, when I saw it happen, I didn't realize it was Martin because he was wearing a mask. I just thought, well, there's just some guy, and I had -- my heart went out to this person. The next day, I realized it was actually Martin and I couldn't believe it.
And then when I see things like this, and the President saying this, even before the President said this, I saw people saying that it was fake and he had some kind of tube going to his ear and all this nonsense. And this is why I had to speak out, Anderson, because I want people to know this is not, you know, an anonymous person.
This is someone I've known for 13 years. This a man who was 75 years old. He was not in very good health. He was a very kind man, a very funny man. He's a human being, he's a person.
He doesn't work for -- he's not an agent of the Deep State. I promise you, he does not know how to turn his cell phone into some kind of a, you know, high tech James Bond device. That's not who he is. And it's ridiculous for anyone to suggest that.
COOPER: Yes, Keith Giles, I appreciate talking to you and learning a little bit more about Martin Gugino. And I apologize, we had so many technical difficulties, we're going to have to end it there. But I really appreciate you speaking up on this. It's important that the good people speak out and say things which are true when the President is tweeting out stuff like this. So thank you very much.
We're going to take a look more now --
GILES: Thank you.
COOPER: -- the question of why the President will not and apparently cannot stop doing what he did today to Martin Gugino. Joining us now is CNN Political Analyst and "New York Times" White House Correspondent Maggie Haberman. Maggie, I mean, look, we've seen tweets like this from the President before. This is, of course what he does, he has no shame. The idea that it -- I mean, what are you hearing about the possibility of him, you know, giving some sort of healing speech or attempting to?
MAGGIE HABERMAN, NEW YORK TIMES WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: It's extremely unlikely Anderson. There are people who would like him to and are still pushing for it. He has rejected the idea of listening sessions, with people talking about their experiences within the black community of police brutality, or of how police treat black people differently than they treat white people. He is not interested, according to a number of advisors I've spoken to.
I think that there is a recognition by the President and by couple of people around him that doing speeches is not something he's actually very good at when they're on a teleconference. So they're concerned about what will happen if he does. But that said, there are moments as president that you have to rise to and this is one that he has just failed to meet the moment of, repeatedly over the last few weeks.
COOPER: It certainly seems like he has made the calculation about what might work best for his reelection in his opinion, or at least to hold on to the voters that he has. And it seems like that is, you know, focusing on what he calls law and order, which is arguably not really law in order because law and order is, you know, equal treatment under the law. That's what results in in true law in order.
HABERMAN: He said a version of that, Anderson, once. And it was last Friday, when he was talking about the jobs numbers, the jobs numbers, which were very positive as they are when anybody is not unemployed, in general, but particularly in this moment after the pandemic caused so many economic losses.
And then he segued from that into talking about equality under the law and then proceeded to say this is a great day for him, meaning for George Floyd, which left a lot of people confused about what he was talking about. And again, that goes to why his advisors are concerned about him doing some kind of speech that it just simply won't go well.
I don't think this is a calculation purely, Anderson. I do think the President tells himself that this is what will help him with his supporters. But I also don't think he knows of another way to do it. And I think he has been told by any number of advisors, this is not helping you, you are in real trouble in your polling and he refuses to change.
COOPER: Maggie -- sorry, go ahead.
HABERMAN: I said leading me to believe he can't. I don't think he can change. I think this is the way it is.
COOPER: Yes, which we have learned time and time again, so I'm not sure why we continue to be surprised by it or if anybody is surprised by, probably not. But Maggie Haberman, thank you very much, appreciate it. Just add (ph) filmmaker Spike Lee joins us to continue the conversation not just about the President's comments today but whether he believes real change in policing and in other aspects of injustice in America is possible.
COOPER: We are waiting to hear from Spike Lee, having some trouble making that connection but we hope to do that surely.
Want to check in with Christ, see what he's working on for "CUOMO PRIME TIME." Chris.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: I'm certainly no substitute for Spike and I look forward to as much as it messages well, my friend.
But you know the idea you used a word a few times with Maggie about the President. Shame. He has no shame. You're right. Why? Well the word, a painful emotion caused by consciousness of guilt, shortcoming, or impropriety. He has none of those things.
He takes no responsibility for what happens in this country. And certainly feels he is to blame for none of it, nor for doing anything about any of it.
Now what he likes to do and believes as effective is to shame people and institutions. He feels no shame. You don't have to be a psychologist to understand that. But he likes to shame.
And he is very symbolic of where we are as a country and artists that you and I both talk about once in a while Banksy, the best known anonymous artist in the world. He put out a new piece of art in support of Black Lives Matter, that people can go look at online if they want.
And he said, you know, I wasn't going to say anything, because really, right now I should just be listening to black people and people of color.
CUOMO: And he said, but then I said, why would I listen to them? It's not their problem. It's mine. I think that's our key here, Anderson, not guilt, not for white people to feel shame necessarily, but the key is the we.
George Floyd, very moving funeral services today. But we will see if this country wants to make this a joint cause or not, and that will be the answer to what happens next now.
COOPER: Yes. We'll check in with you at the top of the hour. Spike Lee comes up, coming up next. We'll be right back.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [20:49:13]
COOPER: Tonight we've been talking about events that for many feel like an inflection point for civil rights in this country in the world at large. My next guest filmmaker Spike Lee has chronicled similar events for decades, movies like "Do the Right Thing" and again in his new movie, "Da 5 Bloods," which comes out on Netflix this Friday. Spike Lee joins me now.
Spike, I'm wondering just first of all your thoughts on what we saw today, not only -- not protest -- not just the protests, but the demonstrations by the funeral from Mr. Floyd?
SPIKE LEE, FILM DIRECTOR: Well, I like to give my condolences to the Floyd family and King Floyd was laid to rest next to his mother. And they will live in peace. And we have to move on.
And I was watching you're segment earlier and they were talking about why should -- I don't think -- I don't expect this guy in the White House to say anything to heal the nation. He's incapable of doing this. I don't know why we're wasting time expect him to do something that's not in his heart, that's not in his whole -- not his spirit.
And there's a very short phrase, deeds, not words. You can talk all you want, but what your deeds show who you are. And I don't know why we're still having some discussion about what type of person this guy is.
I was watching CNN, that thing with the White House in the photo op --
LEE: -- that's insanity. Those --
LEE: -- Americans, those diverse of Americans have peaceful demonstration. And they got a call on the Hard Boyz (ph) unprovoked. They clear the areas so he could walk from the White House. Like he's a tough guy. Like he's John Wayne and or George Patton, Bull Connor. You know new models will had to come out with the water cannons and the German Shepherds while you add it. Go back to -- just go back to Birmingham 1963.
COOPER: You know, and I was thinking actually about your documentary on the church bombings in in Birmingham. You know, I talked to Samuel Jackson.
LEE: Four little girls.
COOPER: Yes, four little girls. Yes. It's an extraordinary film.
And I talked to Samuel Jackson yesterday and he said it feels like change is about to happen. And I'm wondering, do you believe that? I know you were out with protesters. I saw some of the -- I think pictures that you posted. Do you think change is possible, real change, systematic not just police reform but larger change?
LEE: I think so. Anderson, my brother, I'm 63 years old. So, '67 I was 10 years old. The Vietnam War was first war that's being broadcast into American homes. So I was seeing the war in Vietnam and see what's happening here in the states with the anti-war movement.
So, this feels -- I was a kid, but this feels like that, we're all -- we got the anti-war movement, the Black Power movement, the women's movement, the sexual -- when all these things were coming together in this late '60s, early '70s. And this reminds me of this.
Even though I was 10 years old at a time 10, 11, 12, this mindset, but what gives me hope, you asked about hope, what gives me hope to see my -- a young generation, my white brothers and sisters out in the streets. Not just the United States of America, all over the world. They're protesting in South Korea, Spain, tearing down slave owners statues in England. So this thing I don't think this -- this is for real. This is for real.
COOPER: It is extraordinary to see just the sustained nature of this, the diversity of it, and as you said the global nature of it. I mean to have people, you know, saying George Floyd's name, saying the name, you know, Ahmaud Arbery's name around the world. It's --
LEE: Breonna Taylor.
COOPER: I mean, it is. It's -- yes, Breonna -- yes. I mean, so many. And I mean, you know -- go ahead.
LEE: -- let's just be calling names, names, names, names and no disrespect to the dead. But this has to stop. This has to stop.
COOPER: Do you -- are there things that you think can be done quickly that can show progress? I mean, you know, where are you at in terms of, you know, Black Lives Matters talks a lot about defund police. What do you think of that?
LEE: Well, first of all, I know people will get mad at me, but we need police. We need police. But we need adjust police system.
These unions are jamming everything up. They'll go to the mat protecting their fellow police officers in blue no matter what they do.
What we have to do though, and Anderson, this we cannot let this moment slide by, we have to mobilize. We got it. We got to register to vote, and we got a vote. We have to come out and vote.
And you know, I'm a sports fan. And I've seen too many sporting events where one team is way up. They think they're going to win and they give up and the other team takes advantage of it and wins at the buzzer. COOPER: Yes.
LEE: We don't want that. No buzzer beaters. No (INAUDIBLE). No. No, buzzer beaters, no half court shots. No. We don't want that. We got to move forward like we're behind.
We got to move forward like behind --
COOPER: Spike Lee --
LEE: -- in the fourth quarter, clock go loud (ph). Let's move forward, onward, together united.
COOPER: Spike Lee, always good to talk to you. Appreciate it. Thank you.
LEE: Thank you for having me on again.
COOPER: All right, you take care.
Just had confusing signal from the World Health Organization about whether asymptomatic patients can spread the coronavirus, more on that.
COOPER: More news on the coronavirus. Today, a top official of the World Health Organization clarified or try to clarify comments that the organization had made about whether people with coronavirus who are asymptomatic, not showing signs of the disease can actually spread it to others.
On Monday, Maria van Kerkhove, WHO's technical lead for the coronavirus response, was asked about how much the virus spread by asymptomatic carriers and she said it's "rare". To some that sounded like she was saying asymptomatic carriers do not spread the virus. The confusion came about because there are actually two kinds of carriers who don't show the disease at least initially, the asymptomatic and the -- what's called the presymptomatic.
The presymptomatic are contiguous and one day will express the disease not just initially. Today, we'll try to clarify the matter. Van Kerkhove said there is still much that's unknown about asymptomatic carriers.
Apologies for the technical problems we had tonight.