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PAULA ZAHN NOW
Preparing For Potential Bird Flu Outbreak; Pornography and Religion; Giving Storm Victims a New Life
Aired October 10, 2005 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: Hi, Anderson. Thanks so much.
Good evening, everyone. Glad you could be with us tonight.
We have the very latest for you on protecting your family from the bird flu and something you thought you would probably never see, religion sharing the pulpit with pornography.
ZAHN (voice-over): Porn Sunday. What kind of preachers would bring sex to Sunday service?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are young guys. We know the war of pornography.
ZAHN: Filling the pews with sermons like you've never heard before, the shocking, surprising message that will have you scratching your head.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You think Jesus would attend a porn convention?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And make friends with porn stars?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, exactly.
ZAHN: Bourbon Street beating caught on tape. What's really behind the explosive video everyone is talking about?
And "My New Life." Hundreds of thousands of hurricane victims without homes and now without jobs. Is there an easy way you can help? Tonight, a bold experiment, a special new series.
ZAHN: And, welcome. You might want to get a pen and paper handy, because, in a little bit, I am going to give you a number you can call, so you can help the victims of Katrina start new lives. I'm not talking about money. I'm talking about jobs. You're going to be meeting some people who need jobs desperately, people you might want to hire as part of a very special weeklong series we're beginning tonight.
But we start with some new reasons to worry about bird flu. You might remember, last week, we told you that there is no vaccine, no cure for bird flu. And health officials are warning that, if virus learns to jump from person to person, tens of millions around the people could die. So far, no one has caught avian flu outside Asia.
But, tonight, the birds that carry it are spreading. There are several troubling developments to report. European countries are banning imports of live birds from Turkey because of an outbreak in birds there. Also, a farm there is under quarantine. And, right now, officials are killing thousands of chickens and turkeys. In Rumania tonight, they're also slaughtering poultry because of an outbreak in birds there.
Seven villages are now under quarantine. And, as we speak, there's a fifth human case of bird flu in Indonesia that has been confirmed by the World Health Organization.
Senior medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins us right now with even more details.
Always good to see you, Doctor.
So, how concerned is the U.S. government about this latest case that's been discovered?
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, I don't think that they think this is a particular signal case, a signal case meaning that this is evidence of human-to-human transmission.
That is what everyone -- will get everyone's radars up, Paula, if they hear about a human-to-human case, another one. Most likely, this case in Indonesia, the one you just mentioned, just confirmed, the fifth case in Indonesia now, a 21-year-old man who probably got this particular virus, the bird flu virus, from a dead chicken, which is how most of the cases have actually occurred, actually transmitted from bird to human.
So, they don't think that this represents a human-to-human transmission, which, again, would get everyone concerned. But, having said that, you know, the secretary of health, Mike Leavitt, the head of the CDC, Julie Gerberding, are both on the ground in Southeast Asia, trying to figure out how good these reporting systems are in several countries around that region, making sure that, if bird flu does start transmitting itself from human to human, they're going to hear about it right away and get everyone -- get everyone sort of concerned about it here in the United States as well, so that they could prevent it from getting here and be prepared if it does get here as well, Paula.
ZAHN: So, what do we know about the likelihood that there will ever be human-to-human spreading of this flu? GUPTA: But there does appear to have been some, a few sporadic cases, maybe a handful of cases of human to human. They haven't been 100 percent confirmed.
For example, there was families where both the father and the daughter both got bird flu. Now, did they both get it from a chicken that they both came in contact with or was it spread from one to the other? They're not 100 percent sure about that. But, right now, they are saying that there probably have been a few cases of human-to-human transmission.
What they're going to be concerned about, Paula, is if it gets really good at spreading itself from human to human, like the regular flu does. If that happens, then you're going to see the much more -- the larger numbers, epidemic-like numbers, Paula.
ZAHN: So, give us a much better sense of how you contract this. You mentioned that the last case that was discovered they believe was caught from a dead bird. How do you actually contract it?
GUPTA: Well, you know, chickens or poultry get sick, just like humans get sick.
If they get sick, it can actually -- the virus can actually be spread in their droppings. It could potentially be in undercooked meat as well. There are also birds -- the most frightening part are birds who are just carriers. They don't actually get sick themselves. And you could actually come in contact with those birds and get the virus just like, you know, airborne, just from the -- from being around the chicken as well.
That's a little less likely, but that's something that people watch as well, if you can just get it from healthy birds, as well as sick birds, Paula.
ZAHN: Well, something for us all to be concerned about.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta, thanks for the house call.
FRUM: Thank you. Thank you.
ZAHN: As Sanjay just mentioned, Secretary of Health Michael Leavitt, who now is on the ground in Asia trying to learn more about this, he happens to have one of the loudest voices warning that the U.S. and the world isn't ready to deal with a huge outbreak of a disease like bird flu.
But, today, I heard a heard a name I hadn't before, and maybe you haven't either. He's one of Mr. Leavitt's top officials. His name is Stewart Simonson. And he's in charge of getting vaccines in the case of an outbreak here. And, tonight, there's a disturbing claim that Simonson isn't qualified himself. It might be something to make light of if we hadn't seen what happened with FEMA and Mike Brown.
Here's Brian Todd with more.
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): To the various alarms raised about the possibility of an avian flu outbreak in the U. S. , add one more, the charge that one of the Bush administration's top officials tasked with helping to prepare for such an outbreak is not up to the job.
REP. HENRY WAXMAN (D), CALIFORNIA: He has not had the kind of experience that I think is necessary to be the principal adviser on bioterrorism and other national disasters for the secretary of Health and Human Services.
TODD: Democratic Congressman Henry Waxman has been a persistent critic of Stewart Simonson, assistant secretary for Public Health Emergency Preparedness at the Department of Health and Human Services. Simonson's department is responsible for making sure the U.S. has enough vaccines and antivirals to combat avian flu if an outbreak occurs.
In July, Congressman Waxman grilled Simonson about purchasing the drugs at a house hearing on public health preparedness.
WAXMAN: If we need more, and more for sale, why haven't we ordered more?
STEWART SIMONSON, HHS ASSISTANT SECRETARY: Well, I should say we're in discussion with Roche about their production capability and what they can provide us. And they're aware of our -- of our preliminary plans. However, it's worth pointing out that, much like with the vaccine, we were well ahead of others in buying antivirals.
TODD: Some critics on the left charge that Simonson is another administration crony, comparing him to former FEMA secretary Michael Brown, a charge a Health and Human Services spokeswoman calls scurrilous.
Before taking his current position last year, Simonson was special counsel to then HHS secretary Tommy Thompson and advised Thompson on homeland security issues.
In that job, Simonson was a key figure in Project BioShield, a program designed to speed up the manufacture of vaccines against biological and chemical weapons. A Washington Post report last month concluded the program has by most accounts bogged down and shown few results.
Before joining HHS in 2001, Simonson was a top official at Amtrak and had been an adviser to then Wisconsin Governor Thomson on crime and prisons. The liberal New Republic magazine in its October 17 issue lists Simonson among what it calls the 15 biggest Bush administration hacks. HHS officials admit Simonson has no undergraduate or advanced degree in public health. But his former boss vigorously defends him.
TOMMY THOMSON, FORMER HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES SECRETARY: The truth of the matter is, is that Stewart Simonson knows the subjects, he knows the science about these diseases, he knows how to get prepared. He is an extremely capable, competent, confident individual.
TODD: Contacted by CNN, Health and Human Services officials would not make Simonson available for on-camera or telephone interview. But a department spokeswoman called the charge that Simonson is not qualified ridiculous.
ZAHN: And that was Brian Todd reporting for us tonight.
Now we're going to shift our focus to New Orleans and the videotape everyone is talking about, some disturbing pictures of white police officers punching a black man outside a bar in the French Quarter.
Tonight, we learn there is now a federal civil rights investigation into it.
Here is Dan Simon with more.
DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The video captured by an Associated Press photographer is exhibit A in allegations of brutality against three New Orleans police officers.
As we slowed down the video, you can see an officer repeatedly punch the 64-year-old suspect arrested for public drunkenness. His attorney told CNN, he never touched a drop. A moment later, he's forced to the ground.
One of the officers loses his temper with an AP reporter, venting his frustration.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have been here for six weeks and I'm trying to keep my (EXPLETIVE DELETED) self alive and you (EXPLETIVE DELETED) want to come and (EXPLETIVE DELETED) up my city.
SIMON: A CNN photographer captured these images of the man bloodied and face down on the pavement. The officers have been charged with battery, a misdemeanor and have been suspended without pay. All pleaded not guilty. Lieutenant David
LT. DAVID BENELLI, NEW ORLEANS POLICE DEPARTMENT: The officers are upset. They are upset that they were suspended. They thought their actions were justified, given the circumstances that were at hand.
SIMON: The larger circumstances also include brutal 12-hour shifts, officers separated from families, and this startling figure. Three-quarters of New Orleans officers lost their homes.
WARREN RILEY, ACTING NEW ORLEANS POLICE SUPERINTENDENT: The stress is not just Hurricane Katrina. It's the aftermath and it's so many other things that the officers are going through.
OLIVER THOMAS, PRESIDENT, NEW ORLEANS CITY COUNCIL: Is this something psychological that needs to be dealt with? Yes. Do they need time off? Yes. Should we be taking care of them? Absolutely.
SIMON: Some officers have taken advantage of counselors, But not nearly enough, says City Council President Oliver Thomas.
THOMAS: We should mandate some type of counseling and some type of therapy where they can relieve the stress and anxiety.
SIMON: That should happen now?
SIMON (on camera): Psychologists say police officers generally don't seek professional help. It's not in their rough-and-tumble culture to spell out personal issues, all the more reason, says Councilman Thomas, to make it a requirement.
THOMAS: And I'm not an expert. But when you have been -- your family is gone, don't have a place to live, you haven't slept maybe but a couple hours a day for five or six weeks, yes, it would take a -- it would take a human toll on anyone.
SIMON (voice-over): Still, Lieutenant Benelli with the police union doesn't believe stress or fatigue played a role in the officers' behavior.
BENELLI: We are working long hours, but we are coping with working these long hours.
SIMON: There will be more long hours ahead, as National Guard troops and other law enforcement agencies begin to pull out. And the citizens of this beleaguered city try to move back.
ZAHN: Dan Simon with that late report.
And just a short time ago, I spoke with the acting chief of the New Orleans Police Department, Warren Riley, to get his reaction to this beating.
ZAHN: It made be absolutely sick to look at this videotape. Why did police beat this man?
RILEY: Well, I don't know exactly what caused this conflict, why it occurred. But, obviously, what we saw on this video was very disturbing to us as an organization. We took swift and decisive action. And it is an ongoing investigation.
ZAHN: But do you have any better understanding of what a drunk 64-year-old man could have done to provoke this kind of violent reaction?
RILEY: The investigation will reveal that. I don't know if it was provoked. I have no idea exactly what happened to cause this conflict.
What I do know is that the video that we have observed is very disturbing to this department. It's certainly not something that's tolerated. It is certainly a violation of department policy.
ZAHN: But we have just heard Lieutenant David Benelli say that the officers in this video say their actions were justified. What are they telling you?
RILEY: I have not spoke with the officers. The investigation is ongoing. I will review that investigation as it goes along at its conclusion.
ZAHN: Three of the officers who have been suspended without pay are white, the victim, obviously, a black man. Is race an issue in this?
RILEY: I certainly hope not. And there's no indication at this point that race played a part in that. Certainly, that would not be tolerated either. But we have no information to believe that race played a part in this at this point.
ZAHN: When you saw this beating on tape, on a personal level, what was your reaction?
RILEY: Well, obviously, I have to keep this professional.
And, from a professional standpoint, what I saw, again, I believe those officers used force that was beyond reason and it's something that certainly will not be tolerated. It's something that this department will not tolerate.
ZAHN: Chief Riley, thanks so much for your time tonight. Appreciate it. Good luck.
RILEY: Thank you.
ZAHN: And we're just now hearing from the attorney for Robert Davis, the man who was beaten and charged with public drunkenness. His lawyer, Robert Bruno, is now telling CNN his client had not only not been drinking Saturday night. He hasn't had alcohol for years following a rehab program.
Coming up, something that's very unusual and, frankly, very special. I'm going to give you a chance to help hurricane victims start a brand new life. Do their skills match a job you need to fill?
Stay with us for the details.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) ZAHN: In just a few minutes, we're going to try something here that hasn't been done. It's a unique way to help some of the victims of Hurricane Katrina.
And a little bit later on, believe it or not, there is a group of pastors who want their congregations to talk more about pornography.
But, first, a look at the hour's top stories from Erica Hill at Headline News.
I bet you're tempted to take time out of your prep tonight to watch that story, leading up to your show.
ERICA HILL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'll tell you, you did suck me in. I'm very intrigued. I am intrigued.
ZAHN: Stay here with us. It's interesting.
HILL: All right, Paula, we will get you the headlines real quickly.
Relief officials are talking about a death toll of tsunami proportions in the South Asian earthquakes. One of the few bright spots today, though, the rescue of a 2-year-old girl and her mother from a collapsed building, still, though, tons of rubble and freezing temperatures are already pushing the death toll at this point past 30,000 in Pakistan and 1,000 more in India. U.S. aid began reaching the area today.
Back in this country, more rain could worsen flooding along the soggy East Coast from the Carolinas all the way up through New England. New Hampshire has declared a state of emergency after a weekend of almost continuous rain. At least 10 deaths were reported, including a 6-year-old swept away in a swollen river and a man who tried to save him.
It may not officially be winter yet, but folks in Colorado may beg to differ here, where up to 20 inches of wind-driven wet snow brought down power lines and stranded motorists. In fact, at one point, an 80-mile stretch of Interstate 70 was shut down.
And four days after a heightened alert, New York scaling back now its security alert in the subway. Random bag checks and backpack checks, though, will -- will continue. Those, of course, went into effect after the bombings in London in July -- Paula.
ZAHN: Thanks so much, Erica.
See you a little bit later on tonight.
In the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the people of this country have opened their hearts like never before. But the need is so great tonight that I'm going to try to do something that is really different. Hundreds of thousands of storm victims need jobs. And I know that some of you out there watching probably need some workers.
So, in just a minute, we are going to try to match you up.
I will be right back.
ZAHN: It's kind of hard to believe, but, as of today, it's been six weeks since Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast. It was such a horrendous tragedy, and America responded like never before. But much, much more is needed.
So, starting tonight and all this week, I'm going to try something that is really unique. I'm going to introduce you to people who lost their jobs because of the hurricane. If you're a manager or an employer or if you hire people for a living, please watch closely. You'll shortly be seeing important information, so you can call or e- mail us.
I'm going to give you the chance to give some of these storm victims a new life. Here's what they're up against.
ZAHN (voice-over): They lost everything.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, God.
ZAHN: Their belongings.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everything is gone.
ZAHN: Their homes, their cities and towns, and one of the most important keys to recovery. They lost their jobs.
In the wake of the hurricanes, an astounding 363,000 Americans lost their jobs. Some analysts think the final number could approach half-a-million. When all is said and done, the storms may have knocked 400,000 people out of their jobs. Where were those jobs? Everywhere and in almost every industry. When the skies cleared after Hurricane Katrina, 95 percent of the Gulf of Mexico's oil production was shut down.
At least 286 hotels along the Gulf Coast are in no shape to take in visitors. The casinos, don't bet on them for a while. Transportation jobs, look at the roads. Countless shops and restaurants have been damaged or destroyed. And these are the people affected.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's time to start over.
ZAHN: Business owners, welders, cooks and musicians.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I basically have nothing. I mean, everything I have on me is borrowed.
ZAHN: A law school graduate whose first job has been blown away.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My house is gone. My job is gone. So, there really is nothing to go back to down there.
ZAHN: When you've lost everything, you desperately need a way to get something back. You need a job.
ZAHN: So, are you ready to help some of these people? Well, over the past few weeks, my staff has made contact with a number of storm victims who are out there looking for work around the clock. They're telling us their stories, and we're going to put their resumes on the screen.
And, once again, if you're a manager or an employer or you hire people of any kind and you like what you're about to see, please call us at 877-HIRE-ME5. You can also e-mail at this address, mynewlife@CNN.com. Mynewlife is all one word. Or you have a third choice here.
You can go to our Web site CNN.com/Paula and I will put you in touch with our job seekers.
We are going to leave it up to the both of you to see if this match works. CNN has not verified the information provided by potential employees, and we have no opinion about the qualifications of any particular employee or the merit of any employer. Employers should follow their own best hiring practices in determining whether to hire any of the featured individuals.
Also, Ali Velshi is down in our newsroom. He's been looking into where the jobs are. And here with some tips with me for all job seekers is Brad Karsh. He's an expert in career counseling. This should be fun tonight. We are keeping our fingers crossed.
Now we're ready to meet our first person who needs a brand new life.
MICHAEL ADDISON, JOB SEEKER: We're somewhere where we're not familiar with, but it's like we got to start all over. And, I mean, me being a father, that's just my responsibility.
We were expecting to stay two or three days in Baton Rouge. We got word that we don't have no home.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Jesus...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... help us...
ADDISON: ... help us...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... through this terrible time.
ADDISON: We got into the shelter at a church. They must have interviewed me and found out that I was a cook.
They asked me, would I be interested in cooking? I have been a cook about 20 years, various restaurants through the French Quarter. I just enjoy it. I love to eat and I love to see people smile and enjoy eating what I cook.
And I'm dependable. And I enjoy what I do. I think that makes a difference. If I can get a nice job cooking, you know, getting decent wages, I will be satisfied. And perhaps I can save some money from there and try to find a place to live.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Good night.
ZAHN: And if you're in a position to hire anyone, the contact information, you'll see at the right-hand bottom of our screen.
Michael Addison joins me from Baton Rouge.
Good to see you, Michael.
I know you've been struggling to find work. How difficult has it been for you since the hurricane hit?
ADDISON: It's been kind of difficult. You apply and you just wait for an answer. So, you know, that's basically been the problem.
ZAHN: And, basically, door after door keeps on getting closed on you, doesn't it?
ADDISON: Oh, yes, definitely.
ZAHN: How discouraging is that?
ADDISON: Well, it's pretty discouraging, but you just have to take it as it come.
ZAHN: If you could talk to a potential employer tonight, what would you tell him?
ADDISON: I would say, if he hired me, I'd be very dependable and would be very appreciative, because I have to live. I need a job to survive.
ZAHN: And what would you want them to understand about your family right now and what it's been like for them to live in this shelter? We saw how you were all kind of smashed into one corner of that room there.
ADDISON: Well, I mean, the kids understand, we're in a situation, it's not by choice. But the important thing, we're together, and that's just the way it is. ZAHN: And you are trained as a cook. But you're willing to do a lot of different things right now just to support your family, aren't you?
ADDISON: Oh, yes, definitely.
ZAHN: How good of a cook are you, Michael?
ADDISON: Oh, well, I think I'm good enough -- you know, I make you happy. You will be smiling. You will be fat.
ZAHN: And I know you're being very modest.
ADDISON: You know, definitely.
ZAHN: Because I have heard rave reviews coming out of the shelter where you've been cooking for the thousands of people who also have to live there with you.
ZAHN: Michael, please stand by, because I want to bring Brad Karsh now into our conversation.
You have heard a little bit of what Michael has had to say tonight.
BRAD KARSH, CAREER COUNSELING EXPERT: Yes.
ZAHN: And it's got to be so hard to have such a specific skill and be told: I'm sorry. We just don't have that many restaurants open along the Gulf Coast right now.
KARSH: It's really tough. And interviewing is always difficult. It's even more difficult where you're in a situation where you absolutely need a job.
One of the things that I think Michael needs to watch out for, though -- and this is for any Katrina victim, anyone who doesn't have a job -- is walking that fine line between a motivated job seeker and a desperate job seeker. He's not a desperate job seeker. He's motivated. He's interested in getting a position. He wants to land work. But I think employers can be turned off if someone is absolutely desperate and says, I will do anything. Just get me a job. Give me something to do.
ZAHN: And, yet, he really is at that point with his family. Wouldn't an empathetic employer understand, this is a man who is just trying to bring his family into a brand new world here, a world that has been turned upside-down?
And I think people are so familiar with this story and the compassion that he should be and will be receiving from people will be a great outpouring of support. And he has to just relax, be confident and be himself in those interviews. It's tricky when you're doing all those interviews. But, if you can relax and be yourself, it will go a lot better.
ZAHN: Michael, you seem pretty relaxed, as my producers have described you. But isn't it hard to stay that calm, knowing that day after day goes by without a job offering?
ADDISON: Well, it is. You know, from time to time, I think about it.
But, overall, I feel like, hey, God knows what he's doing, you know. He's not going to let me take on no more than I can bear.
ZAHN: And Brad's got some pretty good advice, too. You going to follow it?
ADDISON: Oh, yes, without a doubt.
ZAHN: All right.
Well, please stand by, Michael, because we know that we're going to hear from a lot of folks out there that might just have the right position for you.
Brad, you stand by, too.
So, if you're a manager, an employer, and you want to get in touch with Michael Addison, here is how you do it. You call us as 877-HIRE-ME5. You can also send an e-mail to mynewlife@CNN.com or go to our Web site at CNN.com/Paula.
If someone calls, we're going to bring you back on, both of you, after a quick break. And then we are also going to meet another of tonight's job seekers. And I haven't forgotten about Ali Velshi. He'll be joining the conversation, too.
What do you have for us tonight, Ali?
ALI VELSHI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, a lot of people are saying that they don't want to go back to the region. I am going to give you some tips on how to make the decision about whether to stay or go and what should factor into that decision when we come back, Paula.
ZAHN: All right. Thanks, Ali. See you in a little bit.
Please stay with us.
We are about to meet a woman who has an amazing story. She happens to be a law school graduate. She was loving her first job. She had just bought her first house. But Hurricane Katrina has washed all of it away. This is all that is left of that home she bought. This is all she got out of it, in fact. Can you help her?
We will be back with more. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ZAHN: As you can see, some jobs are going begging in the wake of the hurricanes. But, not everyone has the skills necessary to be in construction, be a health care worker or public safety worker.
So, all this week I'm trying an experiment. I'm hoping to match up a handful of people with unique skills with our people in the viewing audience who can actually hire them.
And you can get into contact with us by calling, 1-877-hire-me5. Send an e-mail to MYNEWLIFE@CNN.COM or go to our web site CNN.COM/PAULA. And Ali Velshi now joins us from our news room with some important information for anyone out of work because of the hurricanes.
But, Ali, before I let you better educate us about how people should be looking for jobs today, we know that the phones are ringing off the wall right now, and we're getting quite a few e-mails that we're checking out. So, maybe we'll have a match with Michael, the first man we introduced our audience to a little bit earlier today.
VELSHI: As Brad pointed out, that's fantastic, the outpouring really is legitimate and it really is great. And that's going to be very helpful to let people know. But, you know, Paula, as we talked about, a recent poll said 40 to 45 percent of the people evacuated don't want to go back to the region.
ZAHN: What are the some of the deciding factors then that one needs to look at if they are thinking that they have to relocate?
VELSHI: I think it's two things. What are the transferable job skills that I have? If you're a chef, that's transferable because everybody needs them all across the country. And if you're not, what are the skills that you have that are in demand? Where are they in demand?
Different parts of the country have things that they need. And that's what I want to try get a little bit out of tonight.
ZAHN: And that's really important to understand that map tonight. Because there are some places that folks who are out of work shouldn't even think about going to.
VELSHI: We've taken a look across the country using the unemployment numbers. Now, remember, there are certain reasons why you would want to go to a part of the country. But, if you're in that position to move, I just want to give you a sense of where to go and where maybe not to look at.
Now, the major migration centers in the United States have been north. Some of the big cities, Detroit and Chicago, have been popular places to go to in the past. Well, Detroit has the highest urban unemployment rate in the country right now. That's obvious, we've got airline shutdowns, we've got auto shutdowns, so that's affecting Detroit. And I know Brad doesn't want to hear this because he's from Chicago and while there are a lot of jobs in Chicago and it's a big city, not an ideal location if you don't have something specific to go to.
Now, the interesting part, is that some of the places that do have jobs, Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota and places around there. Fargo, North Dakota, as well, has small -- lower unemployment rates than most of the country. Phoenix and Las Vegas and southwest, big retirement areas, lot of jobs around there. They have lower than average unemployment in the country.
So, as a starting point, take a look at the places that you might want to go to and see how they compare to other parts of the city. You're competing with everybody else now who was looking for a job before Katrina. So, an informed decision would help.
ZAHN: Sure, and then you look at the numbers after Katrina it's mind boggling, almost 400,000 people who lost their jobs because of, both Katrina and Rita. Ali Velshi, we'll be counting on you all week long. Thanks so much.
Now it's time to meet another one of our hurricane victims, who desperately needs a new job, so she can start her new life, in her case, a life in the law.
MELISSA NUNLEY, HURRICANE VICTIM: I loved the Gulfport area. It was becoming home to me, and to see it how it is now, it's very hard. I had just moved into my house, just closed on it in April. So not only to lose my house, but my job as well, was very difficult, very, very difficult.
I'm an attorney, licensed to practice in the state of Mississippi, and I was practicing with a small firm down in Gulfport. My work ethic is there. Loyalty to an employer is one of my biggest assets. I will do anything, you know, that needs to be done to get the work done.
My dream job would be to get some sort of legal position in the criminal field. I would love to do some prosecution work for the state, never been a big fan of change, and the fact that, you know, I got to basically change my area that I'm living in and my job, that's a concern of mine. But I'm optimistic.
ZAHN: And the person we just profiled is Melissa Nunley. She joins me now from Baton Rouge. So good to see you, Melissa. It's heartbreaking to see what little you were able to bring out of that home that once stood, a duffel bag, your diploma. How hard has this been for you?
NUNLEY: It's been hard, but we've had tremendous support from family and friends and, you know, it's been great having the support of them. And it has helped us get through it.
ZAHN: Just getting through it, basically, has been your challenge. You haven't even had the time to look for a job, yet, have you?
NUNLEY: No, I haven't. My priority has kind of been getting a roof over my head at this point, and trying to, you know, get in a place that we can call home.
And at this point, I'm trying to just reconstruct my resume. Unfortunately, it was on the hard drive of my laptop and all my records that I had in my file cabinet was also in the house. So, it's been hard trying to reconstruct my resume from scratch.
So, I'm just taking it day by day and trying to get the insurance settled up, and try to get all that taken care of.
ZAHN: What a nightmare. We wish you luck with that. One thing the audience should also know, is you're absolutely passionate about practicing the law. And you're a little bit flexible. It doesn't have to be criminal law that you practice, correct?
NUNLEY: Right, yes. I've mainly done plaintiff's work ever since I graduated, but I'm looking for any legal job. But my dream job, of course, would be working for the DA's office. That would be my dream job.
ZAHN: Well, hopefully there's a DA somewhere in the country hearing you talk tonight. Melissa, please hang on for just a minute because I want to bring Brad Karsh back in to our conversation, he happens to be an expert in career counselling and the president of the company called Job Bound.
You just heard Melissa say because the hard drive was destroyed on her computer she has to completely start from scratch, even making a resume.
KARSH: Exactly and that's going to be her first step and any step for any job seeker when they start, is getting that resume in order. What Melissa wants to think about when she's putting together that resume, is focusing on the accomplishments that she's done.
So, when she thinks back to her years as an attorney, focus not necessarily on what was important to her. What's going to be important to those potential employers? And what a plaintiff's attorney might find interesting versus a DA, could be two very different things.
So, she's going to want to tailor her resume for the different types of jobs she's applying to, to make sure it's as relevant to the reader as it can be.
ZAHN: And what other advice do you have for her tonight?
KARSH: She should be contacting the DA's offices, both in Alabama, Mississippi, and all around. A lot of states have granted reciprocity as a result of Hurricane Katrina or offer it in general for attorneys.
ZAHN: I see you nodding, Melissa, that's something that you're going to do?
NUNLEY: Definitely, definitely.
ZAHN: Well, we're keeping our fingers crossed for you, Melissa.
NUNLEY: Thank you.
ZAHN: We hope to see you at the end of the show and hope that someone out there might have an idea for you. I'd like to thank Brad Karsh of Job Bound. And I want to give a very special thanks to our two job seekers tonight, Melissa Nunley and Michael Addison.
So, if you're in a position to hire either one of them, please call us at 1-877-hire-me5 you can also e-mail us at this address, MYNEWLIFE@CNN.COM, my new life is all one word or go to our web site CNN.com/Paula.
I will put you directly in touch with our job seekers and we'll go right back on the air with them if there is any good news to report at all.
I'm going to move on right now, after the break two things I bet you'd never think would go together, porn and church. Does that shock you? Stay with us.
ZAHN: All right. I want you to take a guess about something. How many regular churchgoers are also regular visitors to Internet porn sites? We have a fascinating story about it coming up. But first we're starting something a little bit different tonight. Here's Erica Hill with the headline news business break.
ZAHN: Thanks, Erica. Appreciate it.
Our next story isn't a joke. It may sound like one, though. A group of ministers have actually created a Web site that they call the No. 1 Christian porn site. Why would they do such a thing? You might be surprised. Stay with us for more.
ZAHN; Here's something I think a lot of you will find kind of surprising, by one count, every month, nearly one out of every seven of people indulges in some form of Internet porn. It's actually a national hobby by those numbers. And with numbers like that in mind, some people committed to fighting porn are taking a controversial step by confronting it directly in church. Here is Carol Lin.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So the problem with porn and any other sin, it's stopping us from doing what God wants us to do.
CAROL LIN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): It's porn Sunday at Willow Creek Christian Church in Chicago. Finally, Craig Gross and Mike Foster are brining their message directly into the house of God.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How many of you in here are struggling with pornography?
LIN: They worked with this trying to organize an antipornography movement across the country, targeting ordinary churchgoers these pastors fear could succumb to a sinful obsession.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sex is not a spectator sport. When God created sex, the plan was not to broadcast this out to millions of people for their enjoyment.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE; People have bought the lie that, you know what, this is what to be into.
LIN: Joel Harris calls himself a victim of that obsession. He first got hooked on porn when he was 13-years-old. But Joel also wanted to be a pastor.
JOEL DANIEL HARRIS, FORMER PORN ADDICT: I won't deny my desire for God in that time. It wasn't that that desire was gone. But I won't deny either my desire for lust. I was having these two things inside of me.
LIN: A double life?
HARRIS: I didn't know where to turn.
LIN: Joel's church offers little comfort.
(on camera): What happens if somebody were to go to the pastor and say I've got this addiction, I can't stop looking at these images on the Internet.
CRAIG GROSS, PASTOR: Most of the times it doesn't happen. They don't even go to the pastor, because it's not a safe place. But if they do, they still have those feelings that well, are people going to look at me different. Am I going to get kicked out of the church.
LIN: Craig and Mike, 30-something and California cool were working as church counselors when Mike says he received a one-word mission from God: Porn.
(on camera): You can be a sports counselor. Why do you think God told you to talk about porn?
MIKE FOSTER, PASTOR: We're young guys, we know what's going on. We're wired up like any other guy is wired up. We know that the lure of pornography. We've seen the devastation that happens in people's lives, especially young people's lives with Internet.
LIN: Internet porn is no longer America's dirty little secret. Nielsen ratings service says nearly 40 million of us look at it every month. It's anonymous, available, and accessible to just about anyone.
DR. DAVID GREENFIELD, CENTER FOR INTERNET BEHAVIOR: Millions and millions of people are using Internet pornography in a compulsive or abusive format.
LIN: Dr. David Greenfield is a clinical psychologist who has studied Internet addictions for eight years. He says virtual porn is designed to seduce it's viewers, mostly men, to log on again and again.
GREENFIELD: It's kind of like a slot machine. You never know what you're going to get each time you pull that handle, and it changes each time, but you're going to get some payoff.
LIN (on camera): What's wrong with people just looking at pictures?
GROSS: A lot of times it progresses, and it leads to other things. Whether that be an extramarital affair, or whether that be headed to strip clubs, or just this kind of world of fantasy. And an Internet woman never says no.
LIN (voice-over): Craig and Mike have com up with a blunt way to deal with the problem. The Web site address is xxxchurch.com -- a name designed to snare porn addicts surfing the net, and show them how they can break their obsession. They tried billboards to advertise, but those got ripped out by nervous communities. So they created the porn mobile, a rolling advertisement that is hard to ignore.
GROSS: The best is when we pull up next to a guy and he shakes his Bible at us.
LIN: Their booth at a pornography convention shattered conventional wisdom, and targeted both the messengers and the message.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you the Christian guys?
LIN (on camera): Why do you have to be so in people's faces?
GROSS: We have to be. We're as loud and outrageous as they are. I mean, they are finding -- they're using technology; we're using technology. We're willing to do just about anything to get this message out to people.
LIN (voice-over): The message got to Joel Harris. It led him to admit his addiction in front of his chapel of 800 congregants.
HARRIS: It's something that thoroughly consumes me.
LIN: He believes exposing his obsession got him the support he needed. Now he uses software from xxxchurch.com that alerts two friends to any Web sites he visits, to keep him clean and accountable. And he preaches what he practices to other young people -- stay away from porn. That is what porn Sunday is all about. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's time that the church takes a lead on this issue and goes...
LIN: Seventy-five church congregations talking about porn, an unconventional success for two very unconventional pastors.
FOSTER: Jesus was a uncontroversial figure. I mean, he stirred it up with people, he stirred it up with the society.
ZAHN: Fascinating. Carol Lin reporting for us tonight.
We're starting to get some nibbles for our job seekers. We're going to be talking with some potential employers who've already contacted us when we come back.
ZAHN: All this week, we're going to be asking your help to give some hurricane victims a brand new life by giving them a job. Almost 400,000 folks without jobs because of the storms, and this is really exciting, because we're already getting some results. A little bit earlier on, I introduced you to Michael Addison. He's a cook. And on the phone with me right now is Mike McHale. He owns a combination convenience store and deli in Reston, Louisiana, and he's looking for someone to do some cooking. So good to hear from you, Mike. What did you like about Mr. Addison?
MIKE MCHALE, STORE/DELI OWNER: I saw your interview with Michael, and he kind of touched my heart. And I'll make room for somebody like that who's gone through tough times. And I'd love to have him. I just need to visit with him and see if we can get him on board.
ZAHN: Well, we're going to connect the two of you after a short break. But believe it or not, it looks like Michael Addison now has a second prospective employer interested as well. Also on the phone with me now is Radine Schaeffer Downey. She's the CEO of the Best Western Oak Ridge Lodge in Pogosa Springs, Colorado. Radine, good to hear from you as well. So you have a job for Mike if he's interested and the match works?
RADINE SCHAEFFER DOWNEY, BEST WESTERN OAK RIDGE LODGE: Yes, we do. We have Scrill's (ph) Pub and Pantry, which is a steakhouse, and we need a great cook, want one that wants to be dependable. And Michael looks like a family guy, and said he's real dependable. That's what we're looking for.
ZAHN: And he also made it pretty clear, in a humble way that we all love about him, that he's a good cook.
DOWNEY: That's right.
ZAHN: Well, Radine, this is terrific. And Mike McHale, we appreciate your calling in as well. We have Michael Addison now standing by. So Mike, you now heard that two people are very interested in hiring you. One would involve a much longer trip than the other; Reston, Louisiana is not too far from where you are right now. Colorado of course means moving out of the state. How do either one of these offers sound to you?
ADDISON: They sound good, you know, and we just need to talk a little bit more about it. But I'm very appreciative, you know.
ZAHN: Now, that must be one of the first broad smiles you've had on your face in a long time. Your family has been pretty miserable over the last six weeks.
ADDISON: Yes, ma'am, and you're right.
ZAHN: Well, we're delighted that something might be going your way finally, and Michael, during this commercial break, we're going to try to hook you up with Mr. McHale, who owns that convenience store, and with Radine Downey, who is with the Best Western Oak Ridge Lodge. Keeping our fingers crossed for you. We'll be right back.
ZAHN: I am very happy to report the response to "My New Life" segment has already been overwhelming. We have received hundreds of e-mails, phone calls, potential employers offering jobs for lawyers and cooks. Tomorrow night, we will continue the series, also trying to link up job seeker with employer. Thanks for your help tonight. Have a great night.
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