tv PBS News Hour PBS April 29, 2021 6:00pm-7:01pm PDT
judy: good evening. i'm judy woodruff. on the "newshour" tonight... biden: america is on the move again. >> 100 days, we examine the critical points in the president's address and discuss the administration's future with h-h-s secretary xavier becerra and arkansas governor asa hutchinson. judy: then -- after the verdict, prosecutors in the derek chauvin murder trial consider the impact of the jury's decision and potential changes to policing in america. judy: and -- smoked out. the f-d-a announces a ban on menthol cigarettes, elating public health groups and angering tobacco companies. >> now that menthol is banned and now that we can get it off the market, it's time for us to really help to encourage that cessation effo at a national level.
leaders and ideas. carnegie corporation of new york , supporting innovations in education, democratic engagement, and the advancement of international peace and secuty at carnegie.org. with the ongoing support of these individuals and institutions. this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. judy: 100 days into his presidency, president joe biden
has already faced historic challenges. last night in his televised first address to a joint session of congress, he laid out his plans to prepare the country for the future by strengthening infrastructure and families, and sharing some of his vision for america's place in the world. yamiche alcindonr reports . >> after just 100 days, i can report to the nation: america is on the move again. [applause] >> a pandemic, crisis, and a racially and politically divided country --- still reeling from e siege at the capitol. >> we are coming for you. >> on inauguration day three months ago, those were the immense challenges facing the country, and president joe biden. though those challenges remain, since that day --- there have been historic achievements, frustrating losses and promises
still unfulfilled. >> because of you, the american people, our progress these past 100 days against one of the worst pandemics in history has been one of the greatest logistical achievements -- logistical achievements this country has ever seen. >> in his first address to congress last night, biden touted his administration's work building out plans to get more covid-19 vaccine to americans. now, vaccinators have given more than 200 million shots. >> go get the vaccination. >> the vice president votes in the affirmative and the current resolution is adopted. >> with vice preside kamala harris casting a tie-breaking vote for the evenly divided senate--- biden passed a $1.9 trillion covid relief bill. the aim: trying to prevent even more economic devastation. >> -- since then, he's laid out plans for a $2 trillion jobs plan. >> america is moving -- moving forward -- but we can't stop
now. >> last night, biden detailed another $1.8 trillion tax and spending package to help american children and families. >> to win that competition for the future, in my view, we also need to make a once-in-a-generation investment in our families and our children. >> many democrats -- including some of the most progressive -- have praised the historic, fdr-sized spending. >> americans heard a lengthy, liberal daydream >> but republicans have widely opposed biden's plans. not one gop lawmaker has voted for or even backed biden's spending bills, despite biden pledging “unity” on the campaign trail. >> the actions of the president and his party are pulling us further apart. >> in the republican response to the president's speech, senator tim scott of south carolina said biden's policies, and spending packages, are divisive. >> it's a liberal wish-list of big government waste. plus the biggest job-killing tax hikes in a generation
>> scott also blamed the biden adminiration for not doing more to reopen schools, and credit the trump administration's vaccine work. biden has worked to roll back many of what he said were “divisive” policies from former president donald trump. quickly lifted trump bans on travel from muslim majority countries and transgender troops in the military. then therere the campaign promises biden has yet to fulfill. >> i'll reverse trump's detrimental asylum policies, raise our target for refugees to a level commensurate of our responsibility and the unprecedented global need that exists. >> despite a campaign promise, biden recently said he would not lift trump's cap on refugees allowed into the us. but after intense pressure from advocates and progressive democrats, biden backpedaled. raise the number next month. but officials also said the federal government has to balance processing the influx of unaccompanied children and other migrants at the southern border
with efforts to resettle refugees. though, the two groups are processed under separate systems. meanwhile, the massive immigration bill biden sent to congress has so far fallen flat. his plans to provide a pathway to citizenship for 11 million people in the country without legal status appear headed for a smaller compromise. >> if you do not like my plan, let's at least past what we agree on. we need to pass legislation this year. >> last night, biden called on the senate to pass pathways to citizenship for daca recipients who came to the u-s illegally as children and agricultural workers without legal status. >> as president, i promise you i will get these weapons of war off the street again. >> other biden promises on guns, voting rights and raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour have also so far stalled in congress. >> this can be a moment of significant change. >> in the meantime, biden has
continued to find his place as the “consoler in chief” --- after events from mass shootings to police killings of black americans. >> black lives matter. >> last summer, the killing of a black man, george floyd, by a white police officer , derek chauvin set off protests and a national racial reckoning. this month, biden addressed the nation after the officer was convicted of murder. >> in order to deliver real change and reform, we can and we must do more to reduce the likelihood that tragedies like this will ever happen and occur again; to ensure that black and brown people or anyone so they don't fear the interactions with law enforcement. >> on foreign policy, biden is still working to re-establish american alliances strained by president trump's “america first” policies. last night, biden framed his sweeping spending proposals as critical to making sure america doesn't fall behind other countries. >> we're in competition with china and other countries to win the 21st century. we're at a
great inflection point in history. >> it's a struggle, biden said, that will determine america's, and democracy's, place in the world. for the pbs newshour, i'm yamiche alcindor. judy: for more in reaction to biden's address and his long list of policy goals i spoke a short time ago with republican governor of arkansas, asa hutchinson. thank you very much for joining us. let me start by asking you your thoughts on president biden's remarks last night. >> you can hardly help but like the personality of president biden. he comes across well. he presents his case. at the same time, as you listen to it, you have to be concerned about policy. in the major address to congress he does everything to signal left, and other words, his policies are moving to the left
and the democratic agenda, it is left towards those asking for more extreme policies and spending programs that are a great concern. i looked at that. i saw dollars, dollars, dollars. that will increase our national debt and its four spending programs that have a good chance of overheating the economy and putting inflationary pressure on the prices for consumers that will ultimately cost them. >> with heard -- regard to the things you mention, you mitch -- mention the costs. among other things, they are talking about adding to the number of years of public education in this country, from 12 years to 16 years, saying, this is what the u.s. must do in order she took -- in order to compete with the rest the world. what about that argument?
>> we need to increase our college graduati rates here in arkansas, for example. but we have already, at the state level, made two-year colleges very affordable. we have set up loan programs. there is not any reason someone cannot go through two years of college without going into debt. so we are taking that initiative . certainly me to hold down costs, but that is not with the federal government needs to concentrate on. which is spendingrograms that are federal rate directed -- federally directed and managed. there are two problems the. cost and also that it is federally managed. i think those will be harmful to us. all of those things he is proposing, from childcare and reducing childcare expenses for working families, to lowering the cost of education, it sounds great, but you have to look at the cost of it. and how this will be managed.
i think that is problematic. >> we know education is run at the local level. there would be federal money involved, but i also want to ask you about the infrastructure and the jobs proposal. they are here republican criticism of that, but the president is saying -- this is what the country needs to do. we have to have a workforce in place. we have to make sure people are in a position to do the work we will need in the years and decades to come. >> whenever you talk about an infrastructure plan, he needs to talk about traditional infrastructure, which is roads, bridges, airports, and water systems. you do not need to laden that info structure plan with social programs. that confuses the american public and it is not true infrastructure. secondly, i know he once again said we need to have bipartisan support, and it there is communication going on on the republican side.
the republicans have presented a plan. but we have to get serious about getting this in a bipartisan fashion that is trimmed down, that is affordable, that goes for traditional infrastructure in our country that is needed but that it has to be in amounts we can afford. his is over-the-top in terms of cost and then you add that the american families plan, i think there is at least $6 trillion in spending. in arkansas and many states we will have a hard time spending the money from the previous stimulus plans and packages that have come forth. we do not need to have that level of spending that will increase our debt significantly in the u.s. >> we are the president say last night that he welcomes republican ideas and plans to meet with them to talk about infrastructure and some of these other ideas. his antipoverty measures. his dog about police reform --
to talk about police reform. do you think republicans should work with and meet with the president? >> absolutely. we should meet with the president and have discussions about bipartisan infrastructure, i left senator tim scott's response. he has been leading e effort on police reform. these are things we can agree upon. but the time tatian always from the left is, to push it too far -- that's him tatian -- the temptation from the left is, to push it too far. let's agree and get a doable plan through with bipartisan support. the pressure he is under is -- dis-republican support, let's go left, let's go extreme and passed it -- passant that way. that's not good for our country or bipartisanship. it is not something the american public needs or should stand for right now. >> you do not sound optimistic
that that kind of bipartisan effort will produce anything. >> well, i am hopeful, but if you look at the past, if you look at the first spending bill that came through, it was only partyline basis, versus a bipartisan basis. there was not a serious effort in reaching a compromise. the infrastructure we hope does not go down the same path. and so, this is a test of his message last night. and whether he can be the joe biden that people look at and say, he is moderate, but at the same time, he always drifts left in the past. let's change that pattern. i am always optimistic. i want them to meet. i would like to see a comprome on infrastructure. this is important for our country. solid info structure plan that we talked about during trump trump initiation. it did not happen.
it ought to happen now, but it needs to happen in a bipartisan way and bring people together. >> governor ossa hutchinson of arkansas, thank you very much. >> always good to be with you. >> i'm vanessa ways in for stephanie sy. we will return to judy woodruff and the full program after the latest headlines. covid infections in india surged to yet another global record -- nearly 380000 in 24 hours. officials also reported another 3,600 deaths. the crisis has taxed hospitals beyond their capacity to treat patients as ventilators and oxygen tanks run out. local welfare groups in new delhi are banding together to provide free oxygen. >> people are suffering, begging
for every ounce of oxygen. now that we have brought these cylinders here, i believe the needs of at least 100-150 people will be fulfilled. we hope we can do something to save their lives. >> even as the virus spread, people lined up to vote today in elections in west bengal state. more than 8 million people were eligible to cast ballots. meanwhile, brazil became the second country in the world -- behind the u-s -- to officially top 400-thousand covid-19 deaths. 100000 of those fatalities happened in the last month alone. the news is more encouraging here in the us as infections are declining across much of the country, and more places are lifting restrictions. new york city now aims to fully reopen on july first. mayor bill de blasio announced it today, citing improvements in vaccination and hospitalization rates. >> it means we get to go back to so many of the things we love. it means so many jobs get to
come back and soon. it means that the things that make new york city special will be clearer than ever this summer. this is going to be the summer of new york city. >> despite the announcement, it's still unclear when new york state will allow full capacity for restaurants and schools. meanwhile, new orleans will allow full capacity at bars and restaurants, starting tomorrow. and, michigan governor gretchen whitmer has announced an easing of restrictions as vaccination rates rise. the state had been fighting a surge ofnfections authorities in western north carolina are searching for answers after shootings that left 5 dead -- including 2 sheriff's deputies. gunfire erupted wednesday at a home in boone. deputies had gone to check when the occupants missed work and could not be reached. the sheriff's office says the gunman killed the deputies, his mother and his stepfather -- then, took his own life.
tragedy in israel tonight. the israeli rights -- rescue service as the stampede after midnight thursday at an annual religious gathering in northern israel left more than 100 injured. dozens were critically hurt with more than 20 believed to be dead according to local media. tens of thousands of hasidic jews participated in the festival this year. in russia: opposition leader alexei navalny has been seen in public again for the first time since ending a 3-week hunger strike. he made a video appearance in court today to appeal a fine. navalny looked gaunt with a shaved head, after losing weight. his lawyer said he is managing despite the physical toll. he weighs 160 pounds. when he arrived to the prison in january he weighed 207 pounds. he was on a hunger strike for so many days that not many people would be able to bear. nevertheless, he copes, he is quite healthy for a
person in his situation. one can only be proud of him. >> china has taken another big step into space. the country launched the main module of its first permanent space station today. in all, the chinese plan 11 missions to build and supply the station before sending a 3-person crew by the end of next year. back in this country: the food and drug administration today proposed a ban on menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars. they are especially popular with black smokers, and health groups have pushed for the ban. we'll return to this later in the program. the us economic recovery is rapidly accelerating. the commerce department reported today that first-quarter growth surged ahead at an annual rate of 6.4 percent. in addition, new unemployment claims fell to 553 thousand last week -- a new low during the pandemic. and, on wall street:
-- still to come on the newshour, prosecutors and the derek chauvin murder trial consider the impact of the verdict . e fda announces a long-awaited ban on menthol cigarettes and a focus on indigenous voices leads to a major revival for a pioneer museum. >> this is the pbs newshour from debbie ta studios in washington and in the west from the walter cronkite school of journalism at arizona state university. judy: yesterday, the biden administration laid out the 1.8 trillion dollar american families plan, which focuses on child care and education. as president biden pushes these sweeping new policies, he's relying on his cabinet secretaries to help in that effort. amna nawaz sat down with one of them earlier today. >> and the secretary for health and human services joins me now.
secretary xavier becerra, welcome back to the newshour and thanks for being here. your one of five capital officials the present has tapped to push forward this initiative -- ambitious plan. here's what you are up against. susan collins said she is concerned about the cost. mitt romney said he wants the childcare money to go directly to families and called universal pre-k a federal incursion. how do you change their minds? >> thank you for having me. people do not think we can get the american rescue plan across the table. we do the same way. he got 200 million shots in arms for vaccinations. people do not think he even get into the 100 millions. you just believe it. we are president who worked the heck out of this. you cannot just rescue the american people. you cannot just create more jobs for the american people.
you have to also give the american family a chance. these three legs of the stool are critical for america to come back. >> you are dealing with republicans among whom there is some discontent already. they say the administration has not been working with them as much as they like. some even say they have been dismissive of the work done before president biden. after the joint address, lisa murkowski said this. there needs to be recognition of the success of operation warp speed and their work on vaccine development. what would you say to senator murkowski? >> we need to acknowledge the successes we had in this country. we have to build on those. we have to give credit where it is due. then we have to keep going. i think president biden's message -- we want to build on all of those successes. we want to keep going. we have a lot to do. the president is going to move and he will look for the people he can reach out to.
he made very clear, we need to move. the american people are counting on it. >> you're so moving on getting shots into arms. among people who self identify as republicans, 40% say they do not plan to get the shot. want to ask you about your plan there. they will not listen to you. there will not listen to president biden or dr. fauci in many cases. what is your plan? are you recruiting republicans to get your message to them? >> covid does not discriminate. it does not care if you are red or blue. covid kills. we want you to stay alive. want all americans, we do not worry about stripes. we want all americans to be healthy. when you and your family are safe, we can get back to work. that is what we were going to do, make sure that will happen. so we will partner up with those people who are respected in all those different communities so we go to trusted messengers and use them to help us, whether it is your faith leader, the
wrestling coach in college, or high school, or your neighborhood watch leader. we will go where we can. >> given their so much reluctance among people who self identify as conservative, should you be working with more prominent people in that party? you mentioned yourself recently -- f president trump were to do some kind of psa, it could be effective. have you talked to him about that? >> i am not reached out myself to former president trump, but anyone who has a connection and the confidence of the american people, especially in communities that have not been vaccinated, we would love to partner them and help us because the message is clear, the vaccine saves lives. talk to the seniors in america today were announcing the lowest rates of death that they have seen since covid started hitting us hard. they are the perfect proof the vaccine works. why the rest of america should follow suit. >> i want to ask you about some thing else the president mention. the work to lower prescription drug prices. he made clear will not be part
of the american families plan, it will be left to you to negotiate. the critics so far have called it a copout. they say we have seen this before. administration does not make it a lislative priority, and gets and does not get fixed. can you pleasure will be different? >> not only can i pledge it will be different, but i think the results tuesday in the first 100 days are already different. we have already lowered the cost of health care. there are 800,000 americans today that just required health care under the and when it comes to drug prices i guarantee you health and human services will work very hard to lower the costs of prescription drugs. we will do this on a bipartisan basis. i do not think it is republicans or democrats alone. it is american sourcing it is time that we lower the prices up researcher medication. >> specifically, mr. secretary, how do you plan on doing that? would you want to put into place
the same kinds of price caps that medicaid uses? >> we've not taken a particular approach yet. let's work on what gets passed congress to make it happen or what we can do at hhs through the regulatory process. i wish i could give you the details, and i think the president would give them to you, if he has decided exactly how to do it. what i can tell you is, there will be action. >> mr. secretary, your agency's response will for the care and custody of unaccompanied minors, migrant children crossing the border in growing numbers, and average about 400 plus per day. you have about 22000 and your care right now. you set up thousands of emergency shelters to safely house them. even the former trump administration official said to me that what you have done so far is impressive. but it cost a lot of money. those bets are seven or for two dollars per bed per child per day. 60 million per week is what you are spending on the x -- on the effort. how sustainable is that?
we need more money from congress? >> you just struck the right chords. this is what happens when you have a broken immigration system. when congress does not act. to fix the system. resident biden, one of the first things he did was send a bill to reform our immigration system, to finally fix it. otherwise, this is what you encounter. because these are children, that we have under our care, it is even tougher. when you add covid into the mix, we have to fear kids that we could put at any one facility to protect those kids against covid. when you put on top of that the fact that the previous administration had begun to wind down the infrastructure that was in place to deal with this, it has made it very difficult. we're doing what we have to do, because it is the law and we feel a responsibility to care for any trial in a responsible way. -- child in a responsible way.
it is absolutely a challenge. we will do this the right way. all of us who have kids, who know what it means to parents, recognize it. it makes no difference whose child it is. this is a child. in our country, at least, we have laws that respect children. we will follow those laws. >> your strategy has been to expand capacity, expand capacity. how sustainable is that? >> we will do everything we must to stay within the law and protect these children. what we do is we provide them with custodial care that we would want to have for any child or perhaps find the custodian who could watch that trial -- child during that time when they are going through their immigration status. what we try to do is make sure we handle the responsibilities to find a responsible custodian, in many cases a family member, or we provide them with the care we need within our custody. it is tough, but we will do the right way. >> we hope you come back soon.
that is the secretary of health and human services, hobby or becerra joining us tonight. thank you for your time. >> thank you. >> the trial of former police officer derek chauvin gripped much of the nation, with americans and others around the world watching dustin's of wisdom says testify and spend hours looking at videos of george floyd's murder on replay. he was convicted on all counts, second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter. now he faces prison time. when the verdict came down, there was relief, celebrations, and some said a degree of justice. many said the case was a rare exception when it comes to convicting officers who hurt or shoot citizens. within days, other videos of deadly police encounters have brought renewed calls for racial
justice. i'm joined by the two attorneys who led the prosecution for the state of the soda coming -- state of minnesota, they are jerry blackwell and steve schleicher , jerry blackwell, i will start with you. i understand the two of you had never met before this trial. you would not tried criminal case before. you both to this work pro bono. why was it important to you to take on this case? >> i think i described it as my own moral moment. something that so pierces your consciousness, your sense of right and justice, that you feel compelled to stand up and offer whatever resources you have within yourself, all of your abilities, to try to right this wrong. for me, it was that kind of moment. i thght at the time that if
the opportunity presents, i will do whatever i can for the cause of justice. it was happenstance that within a week or two of thinking th, i got a call from the attorney general asking if i would be a special prosecutor in this matter. i thought i would be behind the scenes, given that i have never handled a criminal case. that is not how it progressed. the result was what you saw. it was me presenting on tv, trying the case. >> steve, i want to direct us to you. the wall street journal's reporting us that 11 of the jurors when they retired to the jury room were ready to convict that there was one holdout who did turn around and quickly. but what does it say that with the overwhelming evidence, including video evidence, that even one of these jurors was doubting? what is that say about the difficulty in prosecuting a case against a police officer?
>> i do think that that is telling. trying -- i tried to address it a little in my closing argument to the jury. we have biases we do not even understand. we do not know they -- that we have them. if you take a look at the bystanders in this case, after seeing a man murdered right in front of them, right in front of their eyes, their instinct was to call the police. can you imagine any other group or organization that you can see its members commit an act in front of you like this and afterward your first reaction would be to reach out to members of that same group and asked for help? that is the way we are wired. we trust the police. we believe them. we want to believe them. it does not surprise me that a juror had questions. and wanted to examine the case very thoroughly before making a decision. that is just kind of the nature of bias. something we do not even understand we have.
>> jerry, it was really striking, the number of police officers themselves who are prepared and did testify against one of their own, including the chief of police. i want to ask you -- what does that say about how critical that was to your case? that you had to have that many police lined up and saying -- what derek chauvin did was wrong? >> obviously, we knew it would be very hard to get a conviction against the police, given the history and track record. i cannot say that we needed to have that many police, but we were not taking the chance. it really spoke to the leadership of the chief, how he takes it seriously the notion of policing and upholding the sanctity of life. that is the highest ideal for
policing. i thing it is a wonderful example to the country about the ways in which the police can police the police and stand up against bad policing. stand up against bad policing is good for good policing. we were pleased the chief today. we think it was very persuasive, probably more so than any expert we could have called. >> just a comment on that. the graham versus conner standard from the u.s. supreme court sets the question as, what would a reasonable police officer do in those circumstances? who better to ask then other police officers? they tend to carry more weight than others. having this many officers stand up and say, no, this is not policing, this is not what we do, this is not what we are about. you think that was persuasive. it does take an active personal
courage on the park -- act of personal courage on the part of those officers to stand up to our adversaries. that is what is expected of us. in some ways, it is the easy thing. standing up to our colleagues, to our friends, that takes a certain amount of personal courage, and can be difficult. i commend them for doing so. >> jerry blackwell, i want to come back to you. you said recently everybody should be a fan of good policing. we know, at least we are reading, that some police, perhaps many police, or looking at this verdict and what is happening in the country and thinking about whether they should reconsider their careers. we are hearing people talk about concerns that it could be hard to recruit police in the future. what you believe should be the lesson from this trial? for police across this country? >> i hope the lesson and the
message from this trial for police across the country is that good policing is respected, upheld, something everybody wants. even those who would argue about dismantling the police, they are still opposed to being abused or the victims of violence. good policing is about opposing map. what the trial stands for, in my view, is the excesses in policing. the disrespect and dishonoring the badge that cannot be tolerated. i hope most police officers will not think the margin is that then. that they have to be that concerned about it. i think that is not warranted from the verdict. as with the rest of us who have jobs, where we have to care for the public or for others, it is fairly well understood that if you're not really interested in doing your job, you probably
should not have your job. i think that applies to the police, also. the verdict is not about going after all police. it is simply addressing excesses and abuses in police. >> what about you? what should not just police but the country take away from this trial and from the verdict echo -- verdict? >> i think that that is such a big question. in terms of police officers and recruiting, i think that if you do not have the heart of a public servant, you could -- you should not be a police officer. i have worked with police officers for over two decades. the men and women i worked with i believe had the hearts of public servants and did good -- did it do good in policing and supported the verdict. as far as members of the public, people need to step up and do what they can to try to make the world a better place. this case was a lot about
empathy and compassion. and about recognizing the humanity of people, of your fellow person. think all of us need to take a little more time to consider what we do, what we say, what we say to people -- look at some comments and things of people online. we have this sort of anonymous system of being able to criticize and lash out at each other online. she would never think of saying to someone's face. i thing we need to consider that, too. to think -- to take a deep wrath and recognize each other's humanity. i think a better world will follow through that. >> take a deep breath. that has more than one meaning. in this case. steve schleicher , jerry blackwell, thank you both. >> thank you so much.
judy: as we reported earlier, the fda announced it hopes to ban menthol in cigarettes and cigars, citing its particularly harmful impact on black communities in america. william brangham has more on the fda's move. >> that's right, judy. for years, menthol cigarettes were marketed heavily to black communities, and today, its estimated that 85% of black smokers choose menthol brands like kool and newport. menthol is an additive that can mask the harshness of tobacco smoke, and its believed to make nicotine even more addictive. justifying their proposed ban today, fda officials said this could help reduce the leading cause of preventable death in america. >> one study showed that from 1980 to 2018, menthol cigarette smoking was linked to 378,000 premature deaths, 3 million life years lost, and 10.1 million new
smokers. >> joining me now is delmonte jefferson. he's the executive director at the center for black health and equity, one of many groups that had been pressuring the fda to take this step. great to have you on the newshour. i listened to your press briefing earlier today when you and several other groups that have been fighting this fight and there were people on the call who were crying tears of joy for the announcement. for people who have not been following this why such a big , deal? >> it's a big deal because it goes well beyond 2009 when fda didn't ban menthol. goes back to 1990 when the tobacco industry tried to come to our communities with mental products. -- mental products. that's over 30 years. >> what is it you find so troubling?
>> what is struggling is how they targeted our communities -- troubling is how they targeted our communities with the free sampling and sponsoring of concerts and events, paying off elected officials and church officials to promote their cause. that's what is troubling. >> i understand there is a few issues with menthol in regards to public health. it seems to make nicotine more addictive but also masks the harshness of the smoke. it makes it easier for people to start smoking. >> that's the primary reason. tobacco knew this. menthol is in every single tobacco product because it masks harshness of smoke. it's not always characterizing flavor like it is in newport, but it is in every product to make it easier to get poison down. >> we saw the fda act much
quicker on other flavored vaping products and other products. you've been fighting this fight for decades. does it bother you it took so long? >> absolutely - that's another reason you saw tears of joy today, because it has taken so long. because it was evident that it was lumped in with other health injustices that african-american communities have suffered for so long. to have a victory of this magnitude, where the fda comes out and says black lives do matter, yes we do care about the health of black unities, that was very important for us and moving. >> as you well know, nicotine is a very addictive drug. isn't there a concern that if menthol cigarettes are banned, that smokers who are smoking them will simply switch to other non-menthol cigarettes? >> what we've seen in other
countries, we see people quit for good. this is what -- other african merits of said. that if you were off the market, they would not smoke other products. it is time press to encourage that cessation effort. at a national level. >> i should say that for all the celebration today, there is not total unanimity in the black community. some of argued that if you ban this, a black market will grow. if there is an illegal product, that might further interactions between law enforcement in the blackened -- black -- and the black community. what do you make of that argument? >> we have heard that argument before. we herded back in 2009 when we asked for the band to include menthol. the argument itself is generated from the tobacco industry. they got spokespersons within the black community to make that
argument. it comes from the industry itself. to be honest, there's apsley no data to support it. even since 2009 when they banned strawberry and grape and other flavors, there is no evidence that we have had encounters from law enforcement because those flavors were banned. to the other point however, and there was another point you made about the criminalization. that to a strong propaganda. they like to use enter up eric garner and sandra bland and george floyd, and look, these were encounters because of tobacco. however, to that same argument, i withdraw anthony brown, isaiah brown, dante smith, these same individuals who were killed same recently with no encounter or no reason for cigarettes so ever. that wasn't the reason they were approached by law enforcement. in fact, it is more dangerous to have a cell phone in your hand and up to air that is to have a
cigarette in your mouth. >> we know long rule making process and litigation ahead before it takes effect. til till then -- until then, thank you for being here. >> thank you for having me judy: many museums, especially smaller ones, have been hit hard over the past year during the pandemic. a fall survey of museums around the country found more than 30% remain closed and a third were at risk of permanently closing. but one museum on the outskirts of portland, oregon, has been bucking trends by being bold. gaining membership and financial support even as the doors remain closed to the public. special correspondent cat wise has the story, part of our arts & culture series, canvas.
>> no visitors have passed through the doors of the five oaks museum since last march and there's not much to see inside these days. normally, that might be a problem... but the staff of this small institution isn't concerned about being a work in progress. >> our vision for the place was not rooted in anything that had already occurred here.” >>olly alloy and nathanael andreini are co-directors of the institution formerly known as the “washington county museum”. started as a historical society in the 1950's. one of many throughout the west it became a museum in the with a vast 1980's collection of artifacts from the descendants of settlers in the region, most of whom were white. >> it takes a lot to do those moments well. >> when alloy and andreini, who are both artists and previously held other positions at the museum, took over two years ago... things were not looking good. >> there were thirteen members of the museum that included the staff. the institution was struggling financially. it was struggling
for leadership. and to be able to be of service to the community. >> that community -- which encompases and cities and towns west of portland -- is now one of the state's most diverse. >> the racial and ethnic makeup of this county is just vast. and here we are telling this one story over and over again. they were doing it through the focus of women's clothing. we did it through the focus of the logging industry. all these different viewpoints to talk about the same people over and over again. >> they believed a big change was needed that started with who was telling the stories at the museum and what stories were being told. >> we saw that the result of not trusting communities to be experts of their own cultural knowledge was choking the institution from being able to be like engaged with all of this vibrant cultural activity around it. and we just thought, well, if we're going to trust people to be experts in their own perspectives, well, then that
seems like the expertise we need behind our exhibitions.” >> they invited kalapuyan artist and writer steph littlebird fogel, who is member of the confederated tribes of grande ronde to provide a critique of the museum's long-running exhibition about her people called “this kalapuya land”. ] working with scholar and fellow grand ronde member david lewis, fogel annotated and corrected the exhibition's panels to reflect the kalapuyan people's views and experiences. she presented the revised panels, along with a diverse collection of works from 17 native artists, in a new exhibition called “this is kalapuyan land”. >> we learned so much from that process and how it was received by the community about listening and how to act listening as an institution. //after that, we were able to eate more of a formal process. so we have a panel of invited community members who review applications from an open call to the community for proposals
for exhibitions. handing over curating responsibilities to the community was one big change in 2019. another was a museum rebrand. when looking for a new name that reflected the museum's commitment to diverse storytelling, they found inspiration at a historic site, only a few miles away. one remains, but for hundreds of years, five majestic oak trees claimed this spot now surrounded by commercial buildings. it was an important gathering spot for the kalapuyan people and others. >> this grove of trees, they have bears witness to all kinds of things for hundreds of years prior to settlement. the idea of the name change to five oaks museum, it was a way for us to stay extremely open ended. >> that open-ended approach has also meant looking back in different ways. >> what is this? >> this is a circa 1900 washing machine. >> cultural resource manager
mariah berlanga-shevchuk is in charge of cataloging and maintaining the museum's collection -- some 100,000 objects, photos, and papers. in the past, the emphasis was often on how white settlers used those artifacts. but not anymore. >> we are using these objects to tell the stories of all of the people who would have come here. so a lot of japanese settlers, chinese settlers, even mexican settlers. so, for example, we have typewriters and there are many examples of black writers early in this era that would have been writing on a typewriter. >> she says the museum's new commitment to equity extends to the staff. with the support of a new and diverse board of directors, alloy and andreini have implemented a series of family-friendly policies and wage increases during their tenure. >> i think about if we had had an in person exhibition of this. >> over the past year the museum - which gets funding from washington county - has found new revenue streams, increased membership and they have been , connecting with the community in new ways. they launched a neighborhood
exhibition project, hosted online classes turned over their , instagram account to local artists, many of whom are young and from communities of color. and they've moved to all digital exhibitions including one that elevates works from trans and gender non-conforming artists. the museum's most recent online exhibition -- called “dis plac”" -- was co-curated by native hawaiian artists kanani miyamoto and lehuauakea. it highlights the long and close connections between hawaii and the pacific northwest. >> this is kapa cloth, this is the traditional textile of my people. >> lehuauakea -- who goes by their hawaiian name and uses pronouns they/them -- works with different mediums, but specializes in kapa making. it's a native hawaiian, time-intensive practice of ating the fibers of certain trees into a soft cloth. they were just a few years out of college when their proposal for the exhibition was accepted. >> what i've learned from this exhibition is that our communities hold so much power and so much knowledge, and often that knowledge is swept under the rug in a museum context.
it is possible to grant people opportunities to tell their own stories and to curate exhibitions, even if they don't have the certain resume credentials that one might require typically. >> but some may wonder if the kinds of changes five oaks have made of would be possible at larger institutions. monica montgomery is an independent curator and national museum consultant. she says all cultural institutions, regardless of size, have a responsibility to be more equitable and socially responsible. >> it's really great to see a community that's banding together with a new model of leadership the co-diectorship with new ways of shaping narrative and really wanting true input. moving in lock step with the community to see how things can evolve. i think it is definitely rare, but hopefully will become more mainstream as time goes on.
>> the museum's next exhibition will open -- virtually -- in july. for the pbs newshour, i'm cat wise in washington country, oregon. judy: on the newshour online, all adults in florida have been eligible for several weeks for the covid-19 vaccine. but the state's stringent i-d requirements are keeping many undocumented workers from getting the shot. all that and more is on our web site, pbs dot -- pbs.org/newshour. judy: and that's the newshour for tonight. i'm judy woodruff. join us on-line and again here tomorrow evening. for all of us at the pbs newshour, thank you, please stay safe and see you soon. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by. >> architect. beekeeper. mentor. the raymondjames financial advisor taylor's advice to help
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this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. this is pbs newshour west from debbie eta studios in washington and from our bureau at the walter cronkite school of journalism at arizona state university.
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