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tv   American Voices With Alicia Menendez  MSNBC  July 24, 2021 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT

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measure's headache. trump hangover in full effect. the former president onstage in arizona furthering his big lie about the election as another big lie about covid is stealing lives across republican strongholds. plus beto o'rourke joins us about a march he's leading through texas, all to protect the american right to vote. plus my take on the high stakes future of childcare.
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and our loudest voices of the week. cubans standing up without fear to demand democracy. this is "american voices." hello, everyone, i'm alicia menendez. we begin this hour with a growing challenge for president biden. convincing vaccines skeptics to get the shot. new nbc reporting shows a glimmer of hope. vaccine rates are starting to rise in states with the biggest increase of new infections. biden addresses the politicization of the vaccines this week in virginia. >> here's the point. all the covid-19 deaths and hospitalizations are today among the unvaccinated people. i know this has gotten a bit politicized. i hope it's starting to change. it's not about red states or blue states or guys like that
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hollering. it's about life and it's about death. >> but the politics of covid are still at play as the pandemic, fueled by the delta variant, surges across the nation. it appears red states are paying the highest price. thanks to vaccine disinformation spread among right wing politicians and media outlets, eight of ten states with the highest spike of coronavirus hospitalizations are led by republicans. of course this can be linked to our former president and his allies. we are still dealing with a trump hangover. the consequences of more than a year of him downplaying the pandemic, even six months into the biden administration. one of the biggest disinformation offenders, georgia congresswoman marjorie taylor greene. this week twitter suspended her account, again, this time for spreading lies about the virus, making it more important for americans to see republicans who do see the danger, like alabama's republican governor kay ivey who is clearly worried
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about the people of her state. >> these folks are choosing a horrible lifestyle of self-inflicted pain. >> reporter: what is it going to take to get people to get shots in arms? >> i don't know. you tell me. folks are supposed to have common sense. but it's time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks, not the regular folks. it's the unvaccinated folks. >> reporter: as the leader in the state, don't you think it's your responsibility to try and help get the situation under control? >> i've done all i know how to do. i can encourage you to do something but i can't make you take care of yourself. >> and the question remains, is all the disinformation baked into the trump base? will anything change that? could a new surge of the virus derail the biden agenda? susan glasser of "the new yorker" puts it this way. quote, politically speaking there's not much point in talking about infrastructure deals or high speed internet if the pandemic is going to keep millions of americans confined
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to their homes. so the irony of ironies, biden's political future may well come down to the persuadibility of trump's political base. are they really persuadable? after all this, i find it almost impossible to believe there is a way to persuade millions of vaccine-skeptical republicans to embrace the shot that their leaders have been demonizing for months. joining us now to discuss, dr. ebony hilton, a critical care anesthesiologist. also joining us, the co-founder and executive director of an organization to help people get vaccinated. doctor, we're seeing a stark difference in outcomes between communities with higher vaccination rates and areas trailing behind. they're using language like language i've used, which you argue further divides us. >> i think using that language, we have to remember it gives a sense of safety for those who
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are vaccinated. but if you come into contact with someone who has this delta variant, you can get infected too. what i stress from the very beginning is there is more consequences than just death when it comes to covid-19. that includes long covid. and at least lengthy times of disability relate to neurologic injury, cardiovascular injury. it's something we can't risk. >> when you look at these numbers, as i was talking to dr. jha and he was talking about the fact that some of these people will never be persuaded, there actually is a large swath of people here who either have been dragging their feet or who can still be reached. how do you reach those people? dr. hilton? >> oh, sorry.
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with those people, it really does come down to telling personal stories. people have been making this a political statement because they can't identify. but covid has a way of humbling people quickly. we're seeing younger and younger people in the hospitals. we're seeing they have more serious outcomes, because of the viral load we're seeing with people infected with covid-19, with the delta variant. we have to talk about the fact that we're having outbreaks at children's camps, that we're losing people who are leaving behind orphans. we have to talk about people who have survived but now have lung transplants, thankfully they were able to get that. or people like the 2 million in the report that showed that 23% of those who recovered were still having symptoms for 30 days out. and again, that includes when we're looking at outcomes out of stanford showing their brains are starting to resemble those of patients with alzheimer's,
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parkinson's, and ms. we don't have enough information to know how this virus impacts those different organs. and do we think it's worth risking your life when we have a vaccine that's proven in safety and efficacy? >> kristen, you lost your dad mark to the virus. we've talked before about how you say he listened to former president trump's advice not to panic. recently we've seen republicans divided on how to approach the virus now, how to approach the vaccine. speak to me, if you will, about the consequences of how the party leadership and right wing permits have messaged this. is it surprising to you that they still have not turned a full corner? >> its surprising, alicia. i speak from experience. my dad was, you know, a lifelong republican who was in step with him from day one. when it comes to this virus, it is going to take quite a lot for us to make sure that we can slow
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the spread. and i think that focusing solely on folks who don't believe in the vaccine or people who are anti-vaxxers is a mistake, a strategic mistake. instead we should be making sure we're implementing mitigation measures like reinforcing masks where cases are going up, as well as lowering the barriers to access for people who want to get the vaccine but still to this day have structural barriers in their way in order to get one. >> nick, i want you to talk about the argument that susan glasser was making that i read during the intro, which is this idea that all of the biden agenda could potentially hinge on his ability to persuade republican voters to get vaccinated and get this pandemic under control. i wonder if you subscribe to that theory and if you have any sense that the biden administration is factoring that
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into their calculus. >> it is the irony and ironies, and challenges of challenges, frankly, that biden has to convince this population. i agree with susan glaser on that. i think biden has to acknowledge the realities of who is unvaccinated and how to approach those communities. there is a whole set of conservatives who are mostly captured by the right wing and are totally, i think, hard to break through to. i mean, no matter how many measures we take, free doughnuts, celebrities tweeting at them, all of that, i just don't think that's going to do anything. but then you have another group of people which i do think biden can talk to. and those are people who are traditionally conservative, may have a distrust of government. again, conservative but also some portions of african-american communities, immigrant communities, who i think are convincible. and that's where i think biden should focus. and it is a little bit of both
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carrots and sticks in convincing those folks. some of the measures currently being taken, i also think that we may need to move toward some mandates on things or requirements on things for vaccines, to travel, mask mandates, potentially having to go to school, having vaccination efforts. so a carrots and sticks approach by the public and private sectors and biden fully leveraging the power of the presidency to communicate to certain segments of that unvaccinated population about the need to do it for the sake of our country. >> kristen, i agree with nick that this is going to take systemic solutions. at the same time we know there are a lot of individuals out there who are in the same position you found yourself in months ago where they are pleading with a loved one to take this seriously. what is your message to them? >> well, first and foremost, they're not alone. it's not their fault, nor is it their responsibility to overcome
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the systemic barriers. it needs an all-community approach right now. so my recommendation to folks out there that were in my position is to reach out to your community and share how you're feeling. but also to have honest and open conversations with your loved one. don't victim blame them. instead, approach the conversation with love and empathy to actually really try to understand where they're coming at, and from there potentially move them towards having a more open mindset about public health measures. >> i am always a believer in empathy. dr. hilton, kristen, thank you both. nick, you are sticking with us. while many on the right call vaccines and mask mandates an attack on their personal freedom, another form of bodily autonomy is actually under attack. the trump-stacked supreme court will hear a major abortion case out of mississippi this fall. the state is appealing lower court rulings that struck down a law banning most abortions after
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15 weeks of pregnancy. and mississippi is now moving the goalposts. last year mississippi said its appeal would not require the court to overturn "roe v. wade." that case made abortion legal in the united states. but this week, the state's attorney general reversed course, arguing roe should indeed be overturned. joining us now to discuss the politics at play, msnbc legal analyst melissa murray, a former law clerk to justice sonia sotomayor, and nick is back with us. how could this case potentially alter reproductive rights in the united states, melissa? >> mississippi has offered the court two different paths for dismantling reproductive rights. the first path, is to vitiate viability, which is the marker at which the fetus can survive outside the room. you cannot regulate previability but you can post-viability.
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mississippi has asked the court to do away with viability as a salient concept. the more maximalist approach that it offers the court is to completely overrule "roe v. wade" and "planned parenthood versus casey." >> melissa, how do the justices consider the political atmosphere, the political ramifications in a case like this? >> i think it's hard for them not to consider it. at least some members of the court. there are certainly many members of the court who seem eager to take up this challenge you. only need four votes to get a case on the court's docket, there are clearly four votes to take this case and to hear it. we also know chief justice john roberts, who is the institutional steward of the court's representation, would be very worried about potentially sending scores of american women to the ballot box with "roe v. wade" on their minds. i think one of the things that we'll be seeing as this case
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progresses is whether the court has the appetite to overrule roe and casey in advance of that election which will surely decide the case, or to take a minimalist approach which would limit viability but would surely send many states into disarray. >> nick, we know a majority of americans support access to abortion. how will this case factor into 2022? >> it's a great question. first of all, we have the supreme court -- actually, let me step back. so this is the culmination of years of organizing and work done by conservatives. their eye has always been on this particular case, i think, and trying to overturn "roe v. wade." and they were able to get a court stacked during the trump years to set the situation up where we're in currently. but this could also backfire on them politically, because i
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think millions of women, millions of men, out in the country are watching this. and we know, we believe, that this case is sacrosanct. i know we will hit the streets and organize if there is even -- if the court decides to move in this direction. and we will be flooding the streets come election time to make sure that we get back what has traditionally been a very sacrosanct constitutional position. >> nick, you have to admit republicans have successfully transformed the court. they have made it a key issue for voters. how do democrats counter the success that they've had? >> well, it's organizing and investing at the state and local levels, honestly. conservatives have done a great job at stacking the courts. they've focused their energy and their time. and we just don't do that. we focus a lot on policy making. we spend a lot of political capital there. but if you watch the
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conservatives, that's what they do, they pivot, they stack the courts, they focus on state and local governments, and you see that playing out here, where they've now got control of state governments across the country in majorities, and the courts. and as these things happen, it's a one-two punch where the legislatures are passing and moving legislation that is conservative oriented like this one, and then the courts are blessing it. and now that they have the supreme court, you know, there's a real threat. and so democrats need to wake up and actually take and follow some of the playbook of conservatives on this and start reinvesting or actually investing in those places. >> we're going to stay on this story. melissa and nick, thank you both so much. next, beto o'rourke is here to tell us about the selma-style march he is planning. plus a problem that cannot be ignored. my take on america's childcare crisis and what needs to be
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done. also our loudest voices of the week. the call for freedom from cuba. first, to richard lui, standing by with a look at the other big stories we're watching this hour at msnbc. richard? >> alicia, good day to you. today marks one month since the deadly partial collapse of that condo building in surfside, florida. firefighters left the scene friday, ending their search for remains there. forensics experts continue to comb the debris that was moved to a different site. as of tonight the death toll stands at 97. an additional missing person still unidentified. today across the country, rallies are demanding medicare for all. they want congress to improve and expand affordable health care in the united states. the groups threaten to file a human rights complaint with the u.n. if demands are not met by august 6. elizabeth dole turns 85 thursday. her husband, former senator bob dole, marked his 98th birthday this week.
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the fight against the restrictive voting rights bill in texas is about to get even more interesting. as 50 texas democrats remain in washington, d.c. to block republicans from passing that bill back home, former texas congressman beto o'rourke is on the ground in texas, teaming up with voting rights activists like the poor people's campaign for a selma-style march called the moral monday march for democracy. the march will start in georgetown, texas and make it way to the state capitol in austin starting this coming wednesday, july 28. with me now, former congressman beto o'rourke and the final of a grassroots organization. also with me is the co-founder
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of the poor people's campaign. talk to us about the significance, reverend, of bringing attention with this selma-style march. who are you trying to reach? >> we're trying to reach the entire nation. but including and especially the u.s. senate and the president. right now our democracy is in peril. we have five demands of this march. they are to make sure that we end this filibuster, that we restore the voting rights act of 1965, that we pass all the provisions of the for the people act, that we raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, and that we have permanent protections for all 11 million undocumented immigrants. and we're saying that we need to do this to save the soul of our democracy. and so folks all across texas are going to be doing this march from georgetown to austin to make our voices heard. >> beto, your sense, if those lawmakers in d.c. have been able
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to move the needle, and what type of support it is they are going to need on the ground back home. >> they're absolute heroes. when they broke quorum back in may to deny the republican majority in the regular session of the texas legislature, the attempt to pass voter suppression bills, not only did they galvanize the conscience of the country, but i have to think they helped get senator manchin back to the negotiating table. he went from a no on the for the people act, the major voting rights legislation before the senate, to offer a compromise that had major tenets of the for the people act in it. i think this latest act of courage, denying a quorum during the special session, and more than 50 members going to d.c., which is the one place where we can win this fight, is going to move us even further in the right direction. what reverend harris and bishop barber and the poor people's campaign are doing in texas is opening up another front in this
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fight, making sure that while they're doing the great work in d.c., that we're doing what we need to do in texas to make sure that we win the right to vote for every eligible american. that's the genius of our democracy and we've got to make sure we fight for it, realize it, and win. that's what we're doing from georgetown to austin, culminating at the state capitol on the 31st of july, 10:00 a.m., austin, texas. we want everyone in the state to stand up and be counted. >> i have a question for you, when you talk to voters in texas, do you get the sense this feels as timely, as imminent, as it does to you and reverend harris? >> absolutely. we talk to voters who only voted for the first time in their lives in, say, harris county, because they opened up 24-hour voting. the minimum wage in texas is seven bucks and 25 cents an
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hour. folks are working two or three jobs in order to make ends meet. their window to vote may be 2:00 to 3:00 a.m. the voter suppression effort in texas would cancel 24-hour voting, drive-through voting, make it harder to vote by mail, and it would intimidate voters at the polling places because partisan poll watchers would be given free rein to do just that. voters, everyday texans, republicans, democrats, independents as well, are trying to get us back to one person, one vote. the bedrock, fundamental principle of our democracy. so alicia, yes, it is urgent in texas. this is the front lines in the fight half it is harder to vote here in texas than in any other state in the union. if we're going to get the right to vote back, let us lead it here in texas better than another place. thanks to reverend harris and
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bishop barber and the poor people's campaign, and centering it on people telling their stories every day at the march, the rally, 10:00 a.m., the 31st of july, at the state capitol. >> reverend, the march is also calling for congress to put in place permanent protections for undocumented immigrants, understanding voting rights, covid, immigration, are on the long list of life changing policies needed to be addressed at this time, talk to me about the consequences both politically and on a human level if democrats don't get passed, to get something like a pathway to citizenship passed as soon as possible. >> what we know is that voting rights and people largely across texas, across this country, believe in the expansion of our voting rights. what we know is that a pathway to citizenship, these things are bed rocks of a strong democracy. we live in a nations where there are 140 million people who are poor or just one small emergency way from economic ruin.
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what we see is that the same legislatures that are infringing, abridging our voting rights, making it harder for people to vote, making it impossible for people to register to vote, are the same people that are denying living wages, denying the expansion of health care, making it harder for lgbtq folks to have their rights and dignity, women, children, all across the board. and so we see this as really a key struggle, really the kind of place where this democracy gets to be lived out, in the people coming together across texas, across this country, and calling for these demands. and we know that it is urgent right now. we are in a bigger attack on voting rights than we've seen since the civil war. and right now, we need to save the soul of this democracy.
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and what's so encouraging is that people all across texas, in huge numbers, are signing up to be a part of this march and come out to that rally. and so, again, we need folks to join us at 10:00 a.m. in austin. >> all right. beto o'rourke, reverend harris, thank you both. ahead, how far some people are going to keep their disinformation on social media. i'm going to talk to the author of a "new york times" bestseller about facebook turning a blind eye. and why america needs a marshall plan for moms to get americans back to work. where s. you can always spot a first time gain flings user. ♪
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how do you feel about dancing? are you making plans to join a swim club? would you ever drink beer? i am not playing 21 questions. these are phrases anti-vaxxers use to avoid detection on facebook, calling vaccines
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dancing, swimming, or drinking a beer. code words allow groups to share vaccine misinformation without getting shut down. facebook says it's cracking down on covid conspiracies as a recent poll reveals how far they have already spread. get this, one in five americans falsely believe the covid vaccine contains a government microchip. joining me, "the new york times" reporter cecilia containing, author of "an ugly truth: inside facebook's battle for domination." i have not seen you since the book came out, congratulations to you. let's talk first about the anti-vaxxers. these groups show how facebook's algorithms can be easy to fool. why hasn't the company fixed these loopholes? >> it's a good question. but it's not a surprise. we saw in researching this book that this is part of a pattern. facebook is not proactive, it is rather reactive. one thing they've struggled with is misinformation.
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one really key thing we should note is that super spreaders of misinformation, there is a group called the disinformation dozen, 12 people who spread 65% of all misinformation related to the vaccines on social media. all of them still exist in one form or another on facebook. facebook has an a hard time with actually completely shutting down these accounts and individuals and content. they try things to get people to actually go to authoritative sources for the vaccine. but when it comes to misinformation, they continue to struggle not only with the sheer enormous volume of misinformation, but as you noted, how those who are spreading misinformation are using tricks and getting through, tricks to get around the filters and machine learning that's supposed to catch misinformation. >> cecilia, you knew a lot about facebook, you knew a lot about disinformation going into the researching and writing of this book. once you were deep in it, what surprised you most?
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>> you know, i think there are several things that surprised us most, just in tells me of the sheer discovery of how much -- how there are so many people internally trying to warn the top executives, and the top executives simply didn't listen. this was absolutely the case when it came to russian interference in the election and the former chief security officer tried to sound the alarm very early on. and we know some of this story, but we put in very great detail just how hard it was for him to get those warnings to mark zuckerberg and sheryl sandberg. that said, the other thing that surprised us is that they do not structurally or culturally as a business function in a way where warning signs do filter to the top. there is a quote within our book where people say, you can't disclose what you don't even know. and a lot of these top executives have been blind to
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warnings, perhaps deliberately blind. >> we've talked about how to suppose of spot misinformation on these platforms, how to use these platforms while being aware of some of these limitations. what i take away from the book is that's a piece of the puzzle, but really what we're talking about here has to be structural change. >> yeah, i think that's right. i do think there are two things that need to happen. i think internally, this is another thing that really surprised us, is that this is not a frankenstein story. this is not the story of a company, a sort of monster that got away from its creator. this is a company whose business and technologies are functioning exactly as designed. so structurally, there has to be something that has to address the fact that algorithms surface the most emotive content and that often means misinformation, hateful content, content that is rancorous. and that's been a big part of the vaccine misinformation.
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another thing that needs to change is the leadership structure. we knew that mark zuckerberg was very much in control of the company structurally. but we found in our reporting that he was making the most consequential decisions. he essentially wrote their policy on political speech, giving the former president trump a complete exemption on all the speech policies that every other user needs to abide by. so we learned that mark zuckerberg is in control more than ever. >> cecilia, thank you so much for joining us. her new book is "an ugly truth: inside facebook's battle for domination." next, the future of childcare. and why this is america's moment to make a permanent change. stay with us. insurance with liberty mutual,r so you only pay for what you need. hot dog or... chicken? only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty. liberty. liberty. liberty. ♪
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>> wow, right in the basket! >> when we talk about the future of childcare, we're not talking about robots like rosie from "the jetsons," although that might be nice, every now and then mommy needs a break. no, we're looking forward to a world where childcare is affordable and accessible to all. it's crucial to the economy and we can't function without it. almost 70% of kids under the age of 6 have all available parents in the workforce. so that's over 15 million children who need supervision during the day. but that care comes at too high a cost for many families. a recent survey finding nearly half of parents paying for childcare this summer are racking up credit card debt. even president biden said day-care was too expensive for him as a single dad and how lucky he was to have his sister
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step in. >> i was a senator making $42,000 a year. you could no longer afford day-care and someone to take care of my kids than fly. and thank god i had a sister who was my best friend, she and her husband, without asking, moved in and helped raise my kids. i got lucky. >> unfortunately the high cost of childcare does not translate into high wages for workers. median pay is just over $12 an hour. that low pay and, typically, lack of benefits, leads to constant turnover in the childcare industry, failing both providers and parents. addressing this crisis requires government action. they can start by raising wages for childcare workers and offering more subsidies to families. but the bigger shift is cultural, recognizing the value of this work, work performed almost entirely by women, disproportionately women of color and immigrant women.
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their roles in shaping the next generation too often overlooked, because at the end of the day, the future of childcare is the future of our country. you can read my essay on this issue tomorrow on msnbc daily along with other reflections from my colleagues as we look forward to the next 25 years of msnbc. that's at and my next guest is the founder and ceo of girls who code. she tells me why america needs a marshall plan for moms now more than ever. (vo) nobody dreams in conventional thinking. it didn't get us to the moon. it doesn't ring the bell on wall street. or disrupt the status quo. t-mobile for business uses unconventional thinking to help you realize new possibilities on america's largest, fastest,
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the pandemic triggered a reset button for a few less. the main one on my mind at the moment, rethinking the workplace for moms. politico reports, quote, returning to work after so many months at home means for many mothers finding a new form of childcare and giving up the additional time spent with families and kids that the pandemic provided. taking into account how the labor force was growing pre-pandemic, 2.3 million fewer women are working now than would have been without the disruption. it is time now for washington and corporate america to provide much-needed resources to help moms balance all that life throws at us. joining me now to discuss, the founder and ceo of girls who code. of course i was like, we have to talk about this. i think at this point we all understand the problem, what you are looking at is the solution. your group just created a
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playbook called making workplaces work for moms. what were your big takeaways? >> first of all, moms have more responsibility. childcare is still unaffordable. we still haven't had recovery from this pandemic. people say we're returning to normal. guess what, things are still not normal. one of the things employers should do is give moms control over their schedule. whether you're a salaried employee or shift worker, flexibility or predictability is incredibly important, especially at this moment with the delta variant. we don't even whether schools will be open. day-care centers are still shut down. we can't simply go back to our nine to five, we need to have control over our schedules. it's a huge thing that moms said. the second thing is we need workplaces to promote policies that will create gender equality at home. 70% of american dads take less than ten days of parental leave
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off. it's simply not good enough to offer parental leave. the way you design it, the culture you have in the workplace, does it encourage dads to actually take paid leave or does it gaslight them when they do because that's what we think is actually happening. the third thing, one of the big things we recommend is finally rooting out the motherhood penalty. you get a premium but even if you take one year off work, most moms, lose almost 40% of their salary. because of care taking. that is simply wrong and we have to root out the motherhood penalty once and for all. >> reshma, you know and i know that when a list of recommendations like this comes out people like you and i grab them and walk by an hr department and drop them on someone's desk but in order tore these changes to go into effect it takes buy-in from the very top. how do you accomplish that? >> yeah. listen, we can't go back to normal and employers need to hear that loud and clear. they're not going to do it for us. they're not going to build equitable workplaces on their own. we have to demand it. and i know moms are tired.
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i'm exhausted. the last thing i'm thinking about is organizing a workplace walkout. you know, or having a list of demands. but we have to. we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. and one of the most i think incredible things i learned, alicia, from the survey is it's not just for moms. dads want this too. millennials want this too. we can't go back to the same workplace that we had before covid-19. it wasn't working in the first place. so let's build it back better and let's take this opportunity -- >> well, to your point about building it back better, i'm sorry to interrupt you there, is it's not just that this is good for moms or that this is good for families. this is good for business. right? this can actually improve the bottom line. >> absolutely. as you see with the numbers, moms, they're not coming back. they can't come back. they're reducing their hours. or they're moving to part-time. and we know before the pandemic women were 51% of the labor force. we were marching toward equality.
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and now everything has changed. and the reality is if you're a company you won't solve covid, cancer or climate unless you have a diverse group of people sitting around that table. they need us. they need moms. and that's just a fact. and so if they're going to bring us back and if we're going to build it back better we need to do some very simple things. pay us equitably. subsidize our childcare. give us control over our schedule. root out the motherhood penalty. you know, we have a lot of off-ramps when you have a child but what about those on-ramps? we need more of those return shifts. we need federal retraining programs. there's so much that we need to do. and i think the government needs to demand that, you know, companies play their role, do their part in this economic recovery. we're not simply asking you to just give us a shuttle -- to get us back out of this mess. but we need to recreate and rebuild. and listen, i know that moms are on the front lines demanding that we do it. >> all right. reshma soujani thank you, so much for joining us.
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loudest voices of the week come from cuba and their call for freedom. verizon launched the first 5g network and now we want to be the first to give everyone the joy of 5g, by giving every customer a new 5g phone. old customers. new customers new 5g phones when you trade in your old ones. upgrade your phone. upgrade your network. so then i said to him, you oughta customize your car insurance with liberty mutual, so you only pay for what you need. hot dog or... chicken?
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and there you have it - wireless on the fastest, most reliable network. wow! of contrast therapy, big deal! we get unlimited for just $30 bucks. i get that too and mine has 5g included. impressive. impressive is saving four hundred bucks a year. four bucks? that's tough to beat. relax people, my wireless is crushing it. okay, that's because you all have xfinity mobile. it's wireless so good, it keeps one upping itself. this week the biden administration ordered new sanctions against a cuban official and a government entity it says is involved in human rights abuses, saying it is, quote, just the beginning of measures to hold those responsible for a recent crackdown on anti-government protests. it is all a response to what the
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world is watching and hearing from cubans on the island. tired of government abuse, the cuban people have taken to the streets, demanding an end to dictatorship. these were not violent rallies. they were not put together by the cia, like the cuban government has tried to convince cubans. this uprising is a widespread demand by the people for basic dignity. covid-19 is on the rise on the island. medicine is in short supply. and so is food. it's clear the cuban government feels threatened. remember, this uprising grew one call or social media post at a time. a friend. messaging a friend from one province to another saying have you seen this? of course, almost immediately after cubans began standing up, the government cut the internet out. now the regime is going into the homes of protesters and arresting them after identifying them through videos as well as through interrogations of others. today the cuban judicial system claimed only 59 demonstrators have been taken to court. there's no way to really verify that. the charges they face from instigating unrest and
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propagating the coronavirus pandemic carry a 20-year sentence if convicted. charges some families say their loved ones were tried on without representation. and then there are cubans detained or missing. according to human rights watch, families haven't heard or seen their loved ones since they were detained. the cube. government says, "no one is missing." some human rights groups estimate as many as 500 detained protesters are unaccounted for. cubans have been posting photos of people they say they cannot locate, sharing stories of detentions on social media using the hashtag soscuba. if you're wondering what is actually going on in cuba, the cuban people are telling you. as tania bruguera, an artist and dissident said in politico, "right now everyone, all 11 million of us, know someone that went to the protests or know someone that knows someone that went to the protests. everyone has had an opportunity to verify stories and not believe what's being said on tv. every person that has been unjustly detained, every person
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has felt for the first time that feeling of freedom, every person that has now felt what it is like at a protest to yell what you want, what you feel, what you've held back, there's no turning back." 23-year-old mechanic leonardo herrera is one of hundreds of cuban migrants intercepted by the coast guard this year. every cuban who gets on a raft knows the worst can happen, he told bloomberg news. "i simply couldn't stand it here anymore. we don't want food. we don't want money. we just want to leave." all he wants is a life. as he puts it, one where you get back from work and you're comfortable. one where you're not worried about having enough rice or chicken to eat. aspects of life most americans have a luxury of not worrying about. and it's that brutal truth and the cuban people's bravery to demand basic human rights make them our loudest voice of the week. that is all the time i have for today. i'm alicia menendez. i'm going to see you back here tomorrow 6:00 p.m. eastern for more "american voices." but for now i hand it over to my
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colleague joshua johnson. hello, joshua. >> hello, alicia. thank you very much. and hello to you. it is always good to be with you, especially tonight. former president trump is speaking in phoenix. we're monitoring that. on tuesday a house select committee is set to begin its investigation into the january 6th riots. what witnesses should the committee call? plus, patience among the vaccinated is wearing thin as cases of the delta variant rise. could full fda approval convince enough people to get vaccinated? also, a nationwide ban on evictions is about to expire. what can people do. we will get into that with former hud secretary julian castro. from nbc news world headquarters in new york, i'm joshua johnson. welcome to "the week." let's start this saturday night with some new developments in the prosecution of the so-called qanon shaman, one of many peop


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