tv The Last Word With Lawrence O Donnell MSNBC April 21, 2021 10:00pm-11:00pm PDT
eventually! you know the drill. (humming) never fear, girl-who-has-yet-to-watch-her- friends-favorite-shows -and-films-of-the-year, it's time to celebrate the biggest week in television. now you can see these shows. and their unforgettable moments, for free. so you can finally talk about them with your friends. get ready for watchathon week, free starting april 27th. download the xfinity stream app to get ready to watch. >> thanks for being with us on this busy news day today. i think it's going to be busy news day through the rest of the week, apples you tomorrow night, i'll see you then, now it's time for the last word with lawrence o'donnell. >> good evening rachel. you grew up on the west coast so you have a sense of the distance i'm talking about. a maginnis self in california thinking about harvard college, 2800 miles away, but, you're
living in a mobile home where the internet doesn't work very often and you're trying to read your college acceptance or rejection email and you can't quite get your internet to work. and then you eventually do and you see eager admissions email from harvard college. that is what happened to 17 year old, elizabeth esteban who is going to join us at the end of this hour, because her story is just amazing. she grew up speaking a language, a tribal language, it was her parents language from mexico, and so, it is one of those stories that when you see it in real life, it is the only way you can believe it. >> lawrence, i will tell you something, a little behind the scenes thing which is that today when i was talking with my staff and producers about what we were gonna do on the show and who we were booking and what stores were pursuing and what we're trying to nail down, one of the things that we talked about was that, lawrence
has somebody tonight that is going to be amazing and you've got to see the storm. and we've all heard that he has this interview tonight that is going to be incredible. so in the proverbial building in which we no longer work because of covid, everybody has been talking about this interview that you have tonight and i can't wait to see it. >> the way she's doing this tonight, to make sure the internet works instead of from her mobile home she's going to do it from her congress men, her local congressman's office, that's why we know the connection is going to work. >> that is amazing, i cannot wait to see. it >> thank you rachel. indeed. >> derek chauvin did not act alone. there were three other police officers on the scene when derek chauvin murder george floyd. two of whom were also on top of george floyd holding him down. we're going to do it all over again. on august 23rd those three officers will go on trial together, in the same courthouse where derek chauvin was convicted. facing charges for aiding and
abetting second degree murder and second degree manslaughter. another jury of 12 men and women will see all of that video, all over again. and decided what they're watching those three other officers do is criminal. and the prosecution of those three officers is as important, as the prosecution of derek chauvin, if we're ever going to change policing in america, because if that change is going to come, it's going to have to come, from inside police departments. only police officers can change police conduct. the witnesses to george floyd's murder knew that. they knew there was nothing they could do to stop that policing, that they were watching. they knew that one of the police officers on top of george floyd was their only hope, of saving george floyd's life. that's why those witnesses begged any one of those officers to stop what was happening to george floyd, and none of those officers did
that. none of them. that's all it would've taken, one good cop. at least one good cop. or a cop who was just afraid, of what would happen to him because of what they were doing to george floyd. there was no good cop at that c, not one. no good cops. the attorney general of the united states, noticed that. and so today, he did what many attorneys general of the united states and both parties have done before him. he announced, a justice department investigation, of an entire police department. >> yesterday's verdict in this state criminal trial does not address, potentially systemic policing issues, in minneapolis. they investigation i am announcing today, will assess whether the minneapolis police department, engages in a pattern of practice, of using excess force, including during
protests. the investigation will also assess whether the npd engages in discriminatory conduct, and whether it's treatment of those with behavioural health disability, is unlawful. it will include a comprehensive review, of the minneapolis police departments policies, training, supervision, and use of force investigations. >> the justice department conducted investigations of police departments for decades, before the trump justice department stop doing that. police officers got a very clear message from the trump justice department, we will never judge you. donald trump himself personally encouraged police officers to be more violent, when they arrest people. american police officers got a new message yesterday, they watched the handcuffs being put on the police officer, who was just convicted of murdering george floyd. the biggest police department
in the world, the new york city police department, woke up to this photograph today on the cover of the new york post. that picture, is worth a billion words. words have never gotten through to police officers. i wrote a book 35 years ago describing the criminal abuse of debris forced by police officers, and that did absolutely no good. in changing police conduct. millions upon millions of words, have been written on this subject since then, millions of words have been chanted by millions of protesters, in this country since then. and in the case of george floyd, millions of words were chanted in protests around the world. and there was absolutely no indication that any of those words had any effect, on the behavior of american police officers. maybe this say of derek chauvin in handcuffs, on his way to a jail cell, we'll get through,
two police officers. maybe the good cops will finally realize, that being a good cop is not limited to what you do on the street, but includes what you do about bad cops. do you stay silent when you see them commit a crime, or do you intervene do. you report that crime, do you testify against that crime. we're always going to have some bad cops, and we're always going to have bad doctors, bad priests, bad senators, that's the way it works. but the only people, who can police bad cops, are good cops. when my father was a patrolman in the boston police department, he intervened one night in pulled another cop off of a black man. and yes, the other cop hated my father for the rest of his life. and yes, the desk sergeant reassigned my father to the worst assignment that he could think of. but my father didn't think that
he had a choice when he saw one of his fellow officers possibly beating with someone to death. and i wish i had more stories like that to tell. but that's the only one. i wish we all had good cop stories to tell. i wish members of congress invited good cops to sit in the gallery as guests of honor, at the state of the union address. because that good cop stop bet a bad cop. and there are plenty of members of congress that would do that, but those stories are not happening in their congressional districts. in so congress can pass the george floyd justice and policing act. in president biden can sign into law. but justice in policing will not be decided by congress. it will be decided in the streets, by individual police officers. it will be decided by good cops, and bad cops. the image of derek chauvin in handcuffs has more power to change the behavior of bad cups
on the street than any words the president might sign into law. fear is the only thing that can change, the decision-making of bad cops, fear of those handcuffs. that they star and derek chauvin's wrists. fear of the life derek chauvin will now live in prison. there is no more important force, in delivering justice and policing, then good cops. good cops can seem like a mythical notion to people who have never seen good cops. people who have now seen abuse by police after abused by police, after abused by police on video. with their own eyes. are wondering where all the good cops. where are they? how much longer, can we keep saying that most cops are good cops? no good cop showed up, when george floyd was lying face down on that street. there were no good cops, they're not one.
where are they? where were they then? it is long past time, for the good caps to prove that they are more loyal to the people they are sworn to serve, then to the bad cops in their ranks. it is long past due, for the good cops to prove they are good cops, by stopping the bad cops. leading off our discussion tonight, professor the chair of african american studies at princeton university. also with us marissa murray, professor of law and new york university, both are msnbc contributors. professor let me begin with you, and your reactions to this day after this night after the verdict. . he >> i'm still exhausted. there is a kind of general sense, of the tight stomach that i've lived with for the
past few weeks is not so tight. but then i'm still dealing with the images of macaya bryant in columbus ohio, in her death. so it feels as if there's these kind of waves, the tsunami waves that keep coming. we're still at a. there's a good verdict but we're still dealing with the question. >> melissa murray we're going to go through all of this evidence again on august 23rd when the trial of the other three officers begins. >> that's right and again to eddie's point, this trial was simply about derek chauvin's conduct, the trial of the officers will actually be as you say, lawrence more about the broader culture of policing, in how we actually perform that role, in the united states. i think the real question we are going to see is whether we actually see those officers go on trial, or whether these
three resounding convictions of officer chauvin, will propel these three other defendants to seek guilty pleas going forward. i think the real question is will we see this in court again? >> eddie my point about this next trial, is that this is the one, that has real power to change police behavior, because most cops have always believed, if they are not the ones who actually did it, if they are just literally an inch away from the guy who did it, they are safe. they are legally safe. they have nothing to worry about. they won't get in trouble in the department, nothing is going to happen. that is the support system, the support system, that has enabled all of the bad cops. >> right. so if you see something, say something. if you see something intervene. you are some ways culpable, you are responsible, complacent. if you stand by and allow an unlawful act to take place.
so i think you're right, it has the potential, to shift the culture. has the potential to impact the way unions work. but you know, i keep thinking that that this good cop bad cop formation is so important, exist within the context of a broader systemic problem. think about the current commission report. that important report lawrence, what was hidden beneath, it in the back of it. about expanding policing. about how particular communities were to be surveilled, because they were in some ways potentially threats to explode, because of past riots and the like. we have to some way, empower good cops, but we also have to change the mindset, certain assumptions about the communities that being policed. >> let's listen to more of what the attorney general said today. >> most of our nation's law enforcement officers do their
difficult jobs, honorably and lawfully. i strongly believe that good officers do not want to work in systems that allow bad practices. good officers welcome accountability, because accountability is an essential part of building trust with the community, and public safety requires public trust. >> >> melissa murray, that's the kind of passage we always hearing speeches like this but i have to say, in decades of studying this i have seen no evidence whatsoever for the following statement that we just heard the attorney general make. good officers do not want to work in systems that allow bad practices. where is the evidence that they don't want to do that? >> again, i think this is going to be a really long and perhaps tortured conversation that we have as a country about what it means to actually do policing in particularly, as eddie says,
in communities that often have been marginalized and perhaps thoreau typed as overly criminal and bearing the brunt of bad policing and surveillance. i think we saw today from attorney general garland is an important step for one, it is a complete one 80 from the position of the trump administration which had pretty much abandoned all pattern of practice, it is a really encouraging step to see that go forward. it means that there will at least be some opportunity to think about this in a systemic way. but it is also worth noting that most policing is quintessentially a local activity, there is often very limited things at the federal government can do to actually go hearse or convince or encourage local police departments to again be more accountable and be fairer in the way that they do their work. >> eddie, your reaction to what we just heard the attorney general say. >> first of all, i think what melissa just said was absolutely brilliant and to
answer your question to her, directly, i have seen no evidence of what's general garland just laid out. at the end of the day, lawrence, policing takes us to the heart of the contradictions around race in the country. we have never resolved it. policing is that space where violence and the ugliness of american racism converge and it's legally sanctioned by the state. so we are at the heart of the matter right now. we are at the heart of the matter of the contradiction. that is not going to be resolved by one verdict. it is not going to be resolved by a verdict of guilty with the three officers, it is going to take a long, hard work moving forward. >> professor eddie s. glaude jr, and professor melissa murray, thank you so much for starting us off tonight. >> thank you. >> and coming up, we're gonna
cover that case that professor eddie s. glaude jr was talking about, the 16-year-old girl that was shot and killed in columbus, ohio, yesterday. more police body cam video of the incident was released today. that is next. n rouge... and even topeka. yeah, we're exhausted. whew! so, tonight... i'll be eating the roast beef hero from...parm...in...soho. (doorbell) excellent. and, tonight... i'll be eating the coconut curry chicken from...pikliz...in... winter hill. (doorbell) (giggle) oh, they're excellent. i had so many fried plantains i thought i was going to hurl. do ya think they bought it? oh yeah. tex-mex. tex-mex. ♪♪ termites. don't mess up your deck with tex-mex. terminix. here to help. you may have many reasons for waiting to go to your doctor right now. but if you're experiencing leg pain, swelling, or redness,
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police in columbus ohio responded to a 9-1-1 call where a fight had broken out among teenage girls which resulted in a police officer shooting and killing 16 year old, makhia bryant. the police department quickly release the officer's body cam video which shows that macaya bryant had a knife in her hand that appeared to be a steak knife. the first thing the police video shows is makhia bryant knocking one girl to the ground, and then a man beside makhia bryant kicks that girl in the head, as makhia bryant rushes towards another girl dressed in pink leaning against a car. and as she raises the knife to that girl, the police officer shot makhia bryant four times and killed her. we're not gonna show you this horribly disturbing video. it is 12 seconds long. we will freeze the video just
before the shots are fired. >> hey. what's going on? hey, get down. get down. >> the ohio bureau of criminal investigation has opened an inquiry into the case and the officer has been taken off patrol, joining us now is cedric alexander former public safety -- he was a member of president obama's task force and he is in msnbc analyst. cedric, what do you see in this video? >> i think i see would most of us see we see a young lady unfortunately, a 16 year old, look like she was about to stab a victim there. and unfortunately, at this place and time, a police officer arrived to the scene and he took one i'm quite sure
he is going to say is appropriate action, immediate action to save someone's life. and quite frankly, to be honest with you, it is tragic what we saw, but he did have a responsibility there to protect that other women as he came up on that. and we saw that involved very quickly in 12 seconds. this is a tragedy however you look at it, and it is unfortunate, as we all know it happens, it is happening right now in this very moment in which pulleys in communities are certainly at odds and are trying to find different ways in order to reform and reframe change on policing practices and all those things as we go through this very difficult time at this moment in american history. it is very sad, and it would've been sat on any day, but it is even tougher in this environment that we're in at this very moment.
>> one of the things that i focused on in a shooting like this is why the four shots? we don't yet know which of those shots was the fatal shot, or if more than one of them was the fatal shot, but what about the first two shots being enough? when we think about the evasion of the capitol and we saw that one person who was shot by police, that was one bullet, it was just one bullet fired in that police officer stopped after the one bullet. reconsider the situation after one bullet, and didn't fire anymore. there seems to be a police tendency to over fire, to fire more bullets than seen necessary under the circumstances. >> that is an ongoing debate and certainly for citizens it is one in which they asked that question. why wasn't one shot enough, two shots, three shots, etc? but i cannot speak for this officer.
it is an ongoing investigation so let me speak in generalities around this. when officers are engaged in high stressful situations, in any high stressful situation, they are strained, generally, to double tap, one, two, assess, one, two. but when your stress under those types of conditions, it is not impossible to pull that trigger more than once or twice. so i can't account for his action, here again, i'm speaking in generalities, around this. but each one of those shots that he's fired he is going to have to account for those during the investigation, in terms of why he took the action that he did. i think we can see from the videos, and even though we don't want to judge this case out here, but we can see from the video, it certainly look like a stabbing was about to take place right in front of us. this is very tragic. here again, it comes at a very
tough time in american policing. >> yes, the timing is so grim and difficult. a question came up for the police chief today in the press conference that comes up i think, fairly frequently in these things, by people who don't have a lot of experience with them and it is why not shoot for the legs? why not treat for the arms? and that comes from the hollywood image with the sharp revolvers. just doing this kind of shooting that can't happen, of course, most police bullets fired in the line of duty missed their targets completely, when officers are on the run like that. the possibility of trying to pick a limb as opposed to a body mass is impossible and everyone within police work will know it. how do you explain that to people why the officers can't make that choice, i'm just gonna try to wound by shooting
the legs. >> generally that does not work, but in real life it doesn't work, we all trained to shoot in a mass. and by doing so you increase the chance of hitting your target, if you are a, lawrence was hitting for someone's hand, their arm, a leg, we very well could miss and that attacker could steal due to harm in which they intended to do. here's what i've always said, that's something we're gonna have to do in policing today. we're gonna have to explain to the american people why we do what we do, and why procedurally we fire x number of shots, why do we aim in the mass, because what is happening, lawrence, people are asking for more accountability and they're asking these questions because for a long time police have
operated in this kind of clandestine environment, where we just do what we do, but we don't have to explain it. but today, with the american people are saying is i want you to explain it to me why you fired so many shots, i want to explain why you shoot in the mass, and it's not that people are necessarily going to oppose you but when people have an understanding of why you do would you do, under certain circumstances, when these events do occur, people find themselves a little bit more educated about these things and oftentimes, when we write policies it becomes important that our community is there to to be a part of that. senator thank you very much for joining us we. really appreciate it. >> thank you. >> coming up, if you've had your to vaccination shots, or the johnson & johnson shot, will you eventually need another shot? that is the question facing doctor anthony fauci and the biden administration.
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that his administration has reached its goal of administering 200 million vaccine shots days, ahead of schedule. >> today we hit 200 million shots. in the 92nd day in office. 200 million shots. in one hunt in under 100 days. it's an incredible achievement for the nation, and here's the context. at the pace removing when we took an office, they would've taken more than 220, days almost seven months seven and a half months to reach 200 million shots. >> doctor anthony fauci explained on sunday how the federal government will decide whether a vaccine booster shot is needed. >> we'll look at the durability of the response.
namely measure the antibodies, we'll get hopefully soon a good correlative immunity. and if the correlate goes down, and you see it start to slow down, you can project when it's going to be so low, that you might have a danger of having breakthrough infections. when that happens, clearly, you will see a recommendation for a boost. the other thing is you might start seeing more breakthrough infections, that go beyond the level of the efficacy, of the vaccine. and then you might also make a decision to do it. i think by the end of the summer, the beginning of the fall, we will know, will have a pretty good idea of whether we will need the boost. >> joining us now dr. ashish jha the dean of the brown university school of public health. doctor thank you very much for joining us tonight. i am sitting here now with two shots of moderna in me. feeling fine. when might i need another, and how long is this going to last. how long are my two shots going
to cover me? >> lawrence thanks for having me on. i too am sitting here with two shots of moderna, feeling quite good. in my best guess is that i might need a booster next year. we don't know for sure, as doctor fauci said, there's a lot to sort out. the science on this is not clear, but the evidence so far says, that these vaccines have a very strong level of protectionist six months. i would not be surprised if it lasts at least a year. but it is possible that for the first couple of years of this pandemic, we are going to need annual booster shots. i don't know for sure, small chance it will be earlier. but that's my best guess. >> do we already have information about that slope downward that doctor fauci was talking about? >> for example if it's 95% when it's relatively fresh, let's say a month after you've gotten a shot, does that effectiveness, how long does it take for it to slow down to say 90%? >> it doesn't it's not like we lose a little bit of
effectiveness every day or every week. what happens is, we have plenty of antibodies, they will slowly go down, and there will come a level, below which you just won't have the same 95% protection anymore. we don't know what that level is. we have not seen any evidence that it's in six months. that's why i said my guess is we're going to get to a year. but we don't know. but i don't have any reason to believe that someone six months out is any less protected, than someone who's only a month that. >> the way people are talking about this, in the real world. they're thinking about travel plans for example. in their thinking well, i got my shot two weeks ago. and they start to plan travel, as people have been discussing planning travel farther in advance. this is just in my conversational bubbles. they start to worry, wait will this vaccine still be good for that trip in september. >> when i've been saying to folks, is don't worry about the summer it will be good, don't
worry about much of the fall it will be good. and again, it's probably early to middle of next year that most people will have to start thinking about this. we get the flu shot every year. that's not a huge deal. i would not be surprised if we're going to get a covid shot. here's the one way in which we could end up needing something zoom, or if the variants really start causing a lot of breakthrough infections. we're seeing a little bit of, it it's not bad, but if that really picks up, then i can imagine people needing a booster, to deal with the variants, and that could come sooner. but if you're planning anything for this calendar year, i think you should feel reasonably confident at this moment, that you'll be able to do that without needing a booster. >> what about vaccinating children? >> i think we're making good progress on that lawrence. right now the 16 and 17 year olds are allowed on pfizer. i expect over the next 4 to 6 weeks to hear from the fda, about 12 to 15-year-olds, pfizer's already signed an authorization for that.
the big question is kids under 12. and there we really don't know, we're just doing the studies right now. it could easily be end of summer or fall. it could even be later than that. we at this point it's much harder to project. i'm pretty confident, by the time we're in the summer, 12 and above we should be able to vaccinate. >> doctor ashish k. jha thanks for authorizing my travel plans tonight. i really appreciated. thanks for joining us. >> coming up in tonight's episode of in the room, we will be joined by congressman roman louise who is in the room, the oval office shift yesterday, in the first visit of the congressional hispanic caucus to the white house and a very very long time. like one whole presidency. that's next. whole presidency. that's next. that's next. freshness and softness you never forget, with downy.
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congressional hispanic caucus, in the oval office. our next guest, was in the room when the president said this. >> our -- unless hispanic families succeed. the idea that we're not going to invest, in what would be roughly 25% of the population, by the time these kids are in our positions, absolutely makes no sense. and that's where we are all about. >> today white house press secretary jen psaki said this about immigration reform. >> is president biden open to immigration reform through reconciliation? >> this is another area where the president looks both at history, past history and also recent history. in see is that there has been bipartisan support. there is bipartisan support for example in the dreamers and moving forward there. his view is that right now,
this should not be that the conversation should not be about a reconciliation process, it should be about moving forward in a bipartisan manner. >> joining us now is democratic congressman raul ruiz of california. he's chair of the congressional hispanic congress. congressman ruiz is also a physician in public health expert. thank you very much for joining us tonight, i really appreciate it. what was it like to be in the room, after several years now, of not being allowed in that room? >> it was quite incredible lawrence. to really be in the oval office with president of the united states, and especially a president of the united states, such as president biden, who truly genuinely cares about americans in our country. something we haven't had in over four years, with the last administration. what was on the agenda, immigration reform in one else? >> we talked about how we can improve the lives of hispanic
americans throughout the entire country. we talked about the most pressing issue right now, which is vaccine equity. we talked about health care disparities in the need of more doctors and medically underserved areas. we talked about the american jobs plan in the american families plan, and being able to help or middle class families by criminally extending the child tax credit, by giving the subsidies for childcare, as well as increasing housing vouchers and making it mandatory over the next ten years, so we also talked about how can we prevent white supremacist from joining our military, federal law enforcement, in the department of homeland security. there is a very robust conversation about policy, including immigration. >> did you have suggestions about screening for that, for people joining the military? >> there's a lot of recommendations already by the department of defense, seven in fact. six of those have been implemented. we want all seven to be implemented including codify dental law, and we want those
extended into the federal law enforcement, as well as the department of homeland security, for example identifying tattoos in symbols that resemble white supremacy. affiliations. these are very important as we combat the racial injustice and brutality against targeted minorities. >> was there an agreed upon strategy, for the legislative approach? to immigration reform? >> yes, the agreed upon the strategy, is that we need to get the senate to pass a workforce modernization, act as well as an agreement promise, actually pass that in the, house we need the senate to do, it so we need ten senators to do that. we are going to move the u.s. citizenship act, which will fix our broken immigration system, increase our economy, it's 2013 studies showed that in ten years, we can increase gdp, by
1.4 trillion, and create 2 million more jobs, as well as increase the community of american income by 791 billion dollars. this is an economic push. in the case that we cannot do it, through the normal process, and if we need to do a budget reconciliation, if we need to do the budget reconciliation, then the congressional hispanic caucus will make it -- that this indeed is an economic benefit a, budgetary benefit for the american people. >> our next guest, after you leave us, is a constituent of yours as you know, elizabeth esteban. she was your guest, at the last state of the union address, and that was the second time in her life, that she traveled in an airplane, to go to washington, what was that like, to bring
her to the capital that night? >> it was so special for me, because i also grew up in a farmworker community, with farm working parents. she is a child of farm workers. in grew up in poverty. and who was advocating, for environmental justice, in a part of my district that has suffered so much, from arsenic in their water, from mulch fires, from illegal recycling plants that have never been permitted, near the port communities. and she really stood up for her community. and after the state of the union, she helped me organize testing in the hardest to reach communities, where the farmworkers, she volunteered a vaccination clinics with biden's retail pharmacy programs. that i helped coordinate with local community members. and so she's really been a champion of the community, and given her history, her resiliency, her grit, her determination, her passion and
her dreams, i have no doubt, than any university is going to be proud to call her an alumnus. and she's going to accomplish great things for our country. >> she will join us next. congressman ruiz, thank you very much for joining us tonight. we really appreciate it. >> thank you. >> and you will meet elizabeth esteban, and hear her amazing story tonight, she will get tonight's last word. l ge tonight's last word. tonight's last word. mimicking their every move. and if she counts on the advanced hydration of pedialyte when it matters most... ...so do we. hydrate like our heroes. cal: our confident forever plan is possible with a cfp® professional. a cfp® professional can help you build a complete financial plan. visit letsmakeaplan.org to find your cfp® professional. ♪♪ [sfx: psst psst]
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can you be free of hair breakage worries? we invited mahault to see for herself that new dove breakage remedy gives damaged hair the strength it needs. even with repeated combing hair treated with dove shows 97% less breakage. strong hair with new dove breakage remedy. it's moving day. and while her friends are doing the heavy lifting, jess is busy moving her xfinity internet and tv services. it only takes about a minute. wait, a minute? but what have you been doing for the last two hours? ...delegating? oh, good one. move your xfinity services without breaking a sweat. xfinity makes moving easy. go online to transfer your services in about a minute. for 17-year-old elizabeth get started today.
esteban, harvard university was a distant dream, 2800 miles away from her home in california, but a world away from the communities she grew up in, speaking the tribal language of garage. the language of her parents, immigrants from mexico. who works in california's agricultural fields. elizabeth esteban lived in a mobile home with her parents and her younger sister and brother. she was concerned about
applying to harvard college, because she thought she couldn't possibly afford to go there. but most harvard students around financially, it and pay only a portion of the tuition or none at all. harvard's financially system is based exclusively, on the financial need of the student, and is designed to make sure that students do not have to graduate with any burdensome student loans. elizabeth esteban did not know all of that. when earlier this month, and a day when her internet service was working at home, she opened an email, and discovered, she'd been excepted, into the harvard class of 2025. [inaudible] and then, another email came, that said, she would receive a
full scholarship, to attend harvard. perhaps inspired by her congressman, rural lori's, who brought her to the last state of the union address, elizabeth roe, i plan to run for congress, and in the future my all-time and goal is to run for office, to become president of the united states. crazy some may say, not a bit crazy, and i ask you to remember when you go into the voting booth someday, and see the name of elizabeth esteban on the ballot, please remember, that you met her here tonight, on the last word. joining us now, this year's valedictorian at desert mirage high school, elizabeth esteban. she is now a member of the harvard class of 2025. elizabeth, thank you very much for joining us tonight. we are really glad you're here. what i do feel like when you got that email, with that acceptance to harvard? >> i felt every emotion,
because i was not expecting, it i was really expecting a rejection letter, when i saw in bold letters congratulations, it was just it meant the world to me. >> and then the other good news that you got is that harvard will cover, you won't have any bills from harvard whatsoever, for all four years. yes. that was the most exciting news, because my number one worry it was not affording college. so knowing that i'm not going to have to worry about, that in focus on may, studies. >> how did your parents react to this? >> at first they didn't understand the true meaning about getting a full ride. but then they were proud of me, and they hugged me and told me, you're going to be able to accomplish all of your goals if you go to harvard. >> elizabeth harder's 385 years old. you got in, in would everyone knows is the most difficult year ever, because, last year
due to covid, many of the incoming freshman, took a gap year, and are only going to come this year, so there were very few seats, very few open slots for acceptances for this year, fewer than ever. and you got one. so it was even harder than it has been in the past. >> yes. getting into college has been very complicated. as the years go by, but i just want to tell the young people, to just try it out and don't live a life regretting it, and questioning what if i did try, and would if i did get accepted. >> what about your younger brother and sister, are they looking up to their big sister, thinking maybe they can do something like that? >> yes my brother already has, he already knows what he wants to do when he grows up, he wants to be a nurse, and he wants to become a doctor. so i'm really happy to be there,
and guide them and help them as well. >> i want to talk about the language that your parents speak, their native language which is a tribal language from mexico. there are maybe 200,000 people in the world now who speak that language. and you grew up with that. how has that, how has growing up in your family, created your view of life in this country? >> growing up in a community where most of my, most of the people that live here are hardworking farmworkers, my parents implemented those values of working hard and being determined. it just helped me out and actually made me mature even faster. because i have been, and they always taught me that growing up. >> and so the first time you will see your college, is when
you show up to go to your college. >> yes. that's right. >> okay well you might need some advice and i have somebody right here, eli rivas, who like you, is from california, a recent graduate of harvard college. he works with me every day on this show. he also, got a scholarship to attend his four years of harvard, he's going to help you out with everything you need to know, he's going to let you know where all the cool places are to hang out. so your support system is already here. >> thank you so much i really appreciate it. >> elizabeth esteban, thank you very much for joining us tonight. it was a really exciting for us to meet you. thank you. >> thank you for having me. >> elizabeth esteban gets tonight's last word. the 11th hour, with brian williams starts now. starts now.
>> they 92 of the biden administration which finds itself part of a major movement to push for police reform, receiving renewed energy and impetus with help from the federal government, less than 24 hours after a jury convicted former officer derek chauvin of murdering george floyd. the feds are now scrutinizing the minneapolis police force which of course once employed chauvin, and the three other officers, let's not forget, who are awaiting trial in george floyd's murder. >> the justice department has opened a civil investigation to determine whether the minneapolis police department engages in a pattern of practice of unconstitutional, or unlawful, policing. yesterday's verdict in the state criminal trial does not address potentially systemic policing issue in minneapolis. good officers do not want to work in systems that allow bad