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Possible Deal on Government Shutdown, Debt Ceiling; Muslims Gather in Mecca for Hajj

Aired October 15, 2013 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Two weeks since the start of a partial government shutdown, two days before a deadline for the U.S. debt ceiling. Some political leaders say they are closer on a deal. Yesterday, one possibility was offered by Republican Senator Susan Collins and Democratic Senator Joe Manchin. It would set aside funds to end the shutdown, increase the debt ceiling and address parts of the Affordable Care Act - Obamacare. That`s been one focus of the debates in Washington. Nothing is finalized. Any deal would have to be passed by the House and the Senate and then signed by the president. But Senate leaders say they are feeling more positive.


SEN. HARRY REID (D) MAJORITY LEADER: I`m very optimistic, and we reach - we will reach an agreement that`s reasonable in nature this week.

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R ) MINORITY LEADER: And we`ve had an opportunity over the last couple of days to have some very constructive exchanges of use (ph) about how to move forward. Those discussions continue, and I share his optimism that we`re going to get a result that will be acceptable to both sides.


AZUZ: One position you wouldn`t expect to find on an NFL team, an infectious disease specialist, but the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are working with one to deal with something that`s now affected three players: MRSA. It`s a nasty little bacteria that might look like a pimple or spider bite on someone infected. MRSA stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. What that means, is that it`s hard to cure because regular antibiotics don`t phase it. Three players in Tampa Bay have been diagnosed with the MRSA infection. They are cornerback Jonathan Banks, guard Carl Nicks and kicker Lawrence Tynes. We don`t know yet how they got MRSA, but one way it can spread is through skin to skin contact. People can also get it when they touch something with the bacteria on it. That`s more likely in places with shared equipment, so think hospitals, gyms and locker rooms. Depending on the severity of the infection, it is possible to continue playing after being treated. Carl Nicks did that before his infection recurred. It`s not necessarily life-threatening, if treated. And the NFL has dealt with dozens of cases before. Ways to prevent MRSA spread include washing your hands, showering right after exercising, but without sharing soaps or towels, keeping your cuts covered and washing and drying your workout clothes. As for the Bucs, they`ve had their locker room sanitized and they say they`ll everything they can to stop MRSA from spreading any further.


ANNOUNCER: Is this legit? Islam is the world`s second largest religion. It`s true. Christianity is a largest religion and Islam is second largest with around 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide.


AZUZ: Some of these Muslims are gathering in Saudi Arabia right now. They are in the city of Mecca for an annual event called Hajj. Hajj is a pilgrimage, a religious journey to Mecca. And making that journey is one of the five pillars of Islam. One of the religion`s fundamental practices. Most years, about 2 million Muslims perform Hajj. It involves several days of detailed rituals, some of them take place around the Kaaba, that`s the large cube shaped structure you see right here. It` s a shrine, and for Muslims it`s the most sacred spot on Earth. Every Muslim who is physically and financially able to go, is supposed to perform Haj at least once in his or her life. Those who do can add Al Haj of Haji to their name.

Your economics classes teach you about supply and demand. Part of that concept says if there`s demand for something and the supply goes down, the price will go up. If the product is something like fish, then a drop a supply can have an environmental impact along with an economic one. In Hong Kong some high tech fishermen want to resupply by raising fish indoors.


DEAN IRVINE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The catch of the day landed at Hong Kong`s Aberdeen fish market. While this huge grouper is set to make a local dining table grown, the city`s live fish industry is facing leaner times.

MR. LEE, FISHERMAN (through translator): Business? It`s quite hard to do business now because there`s not much supply, they are just not that many fish in the sea.

IRVINE: Yet the demand for life seafood in Hong Kong and mainland China continues to grow: each day, boats unload around 30 tons of fish at this market, with wild fish coming from hundreds of miles away.

MR. CHOI, FISH SHOP OWNER (through translator): Actually, there aren`t many fish from local waters. I think less than five percent of them. Only around 20 percent of our fish docs come from the sea. Most of them, around 80 percent, are from fish farms.

IRVINE: Fish farms like this one have thrived with the decline of wild fish stocks. They are starting to attract some big fish. In a high rise in the city, the science of fish farming is being perfected.

LLOYD MOSKALIK, MANAGING DIRECTOR, OCEANETHIX: So, that there are 80,000 tons of water seating on the 15th floor, of the industrial building.

IRVINE: Oceanethix is operating an environmentally friendly system to grow and keep live fish indoors. Their operation looks like a scene from a science fiction movie, with the blue lights simulating the deep sea.

MOSKALIK: The ones we`re growing at the moment, the most expensive would be selling for about 90 to 100 U.S. dollars a kilogram. Wholesale, prices have been ratcheting up on ten to 15 percent per annum for the past five or six years.

IRVINE: And that means, good business. Live fish are a billion dollar a year industry.


AZUZ: Hispanic Heritage Month wraps up today, the celebration recognizes the contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans. Christian Figueroa is a good example. He`s been a professional opera singer since he was 16, in this installment of Korea connections you`re going to learn about his journey.

First, listen to him sing in this YouTube video.


CHRISTIAN FIGUEROA: Hi, guys, my name is Christian Figueroa. I`m from Sanwan (ph), Puerto Rico, and I`m a professional opera singer.

At an early age, I started - it started seeping into my body, into my bones. And I became a fan of classical music, I became a fan of jazz. But music appreciation in general. And so, that took me to middle school choirs, middle school performances, church choirs. High school performances of all types. There is different obstacles in life. Yes, I`ve had several, you know, but I get really good advice when I was actually graduating from college, I paid attention, to this long speech and I remember the speaking saying you will all fail, but those of you who get right back up and continue to go forward, will have a career. You know what I love about my job? Is having the opportunity to express myself. This is one of my favorite areas from the opera Cosi Fan Tutte by Mozart. It`s called Una Uram Amorosa. (singing) (speaking Spanish) (singing).

I wish you all the very best of luck in your - pursuit of your dreams.


AZUZ: You just never know who or what might show up in our "Roll Call". Today, definitely has some unique mascots. We`re going to ease a (inaudible) with the dragons from Stranahan High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. But over in Texas, we`ve got the Skidos (ph) - the Skidos (ph) from Mesquite High in Mesquite, Texas.

Dots might sound a little confusing as a mascot, but it all makes sense when we tell you, they are from Poca High School in West Virginia. Yeah, the poca dots. They are making their mark on today`s "Roll Call."

West Orange High in Florida gets its own segment - the school is getting some media attention, because of its new homecoming king and queen.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: She doesn`t have a worry in the world, and you just - she`s never in the bad mood, ever.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s a beautiful girl, not just outside, but inside also.


AZUZ: They are talking about Simone Edkins and Trezvon Babahante (ph), West Oranges homecoming king and queen. When they won their crowns district officials said it was the first time they could think of the two students with Down syndrome were named king and queen. Their teacher said he couldn`t be more proud of the school and the quarterback who`s also in the running for king, said homecoming is about bringing people together and having fun. He says that`s what Baba and Simone do.


HAYDEN GRIFFITTS, FOOTBALL CAPTAIN: We`re not doing this because we feel bad for them, or anything like that. We`re doing this because we genuinely like Baba and Simone.


AZUZ: Last week we featured a dog versus three chickens. Didn`t seem like a fair fight. That means this bout should be really one sided. That crab knows its fighting outside its weight class, right?

I don`t know which is more embarrassing for the dog. Being featured on YouTube or being shown up by a crab on YouTube. Maybe the dog`s regular sparring partner didn`t show up. The crab maybe a mismatch on paper, but it`ll do in the pincher. Maybe the crab is just trying to rope the dog in. If so, it`s playing an elaborate shell game. Maybe you can go eight rounds - OK, nine, but if it thinks it can last any longer once that dog decides to let loose, it`s just barking up the wrong tree. Hopefully, those puns don`t put you in a crabby mood. If so, we`ll claw our way back tomorrow. Have a great day.