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Spinal Muscular Atrophy Sufferer Wants to End Treatment, But Some People Want to Prevent It; Kaepernick Anthem Protest Draws Support; Second Attempt at Jury Selection for Hot Car Dad. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired September 12, 2016 - 19:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[19:00:06] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Appleton teen, Jerika Bolen, suffering from spinal muscular atrophy, decided she no longer wanted to fight the
JERIKA BOLEN, TEEN WITH SPINAL ATROPHY: I need to do what`s best for me. It was a really hard decision to make.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because of her condition, Jerika lives in constant intense pain and only has the use of some of her muscles.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The letter sent by the executive director of Disabled Parents Rights, a Colorado based group, asking Outagamie County to
intervene on Jerika`s behalf, in case she`s not getting the proper care.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m really concerned that she`s not getting appropriate medical care, that she has doctors that are devaluing her life.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DREW PINSKY, DR. DREW ON CALL SHOW HOST: 14-year-old Jerika Bolen suffers from spinal muscular atrophy type two. She`s made a decision to stop
medical treatment which will end her life. But now, some disability rights organizations are demanding that Child Protective Services get involved.
Joining us, Lisa Bloom, attorney at awo.com and The Bloom Firm, she specializes in family law, Bradford Cohen, defense attorney, and Judy Ho,
clinical psychologist and professor at Pepperdine University.
Judy, she is 14 years of age, she is living with this disease her whole life, but is she old enough to make a decision like this?
JUDY HO, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST: I don`t believe so, Dr. Drew. As you know, a 14-year-old`s brain is just starting to form the frontal lobe
development, that executive function, pick up that brain, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Got it. Got it.
HO: We`ve had this conversation. And it`s still developing. We actually know that the frontal lobe continues to develop even into early 20s for
most individuals. So, this is just the beginning of that.
What does the frontal lobe do? It helps us make complex decision, forecasts the future, understand long-term planning, I don`t think that she can do
that right now.
PINSKY: So -- so to get back to our brain here, so we`re talking about this part of the brain up here, rigth in here, and -- and without that, you
might succumb to what, Judy? Magical thinking?
Thinking that, you know, I`m going to -- whatever, sort of things she imagines is reality rather than any kind of real perspective on the future,
would that be about accurate?
HO: That`s right. She doesn`t have a full perspective on the future. She probably can`t forecast much longer than a couple of weeks or a month at a
time at this age, and that is age appropriate.
And I feel like if she was to live a little longer, she would allow that part to develop and she would be able to see what some of these other
possibilities would be.
PINSKY: We`re looking at pictures of her. They essentially put on sort of a prom for her, a real celebration of her life, with the expectation that she
was going to do this. Bradford, where are you falling on this?
BRADFORD COHEN, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I understand the argument that she`s a little young at 14 years old, but I`m sure she lived a lot and seen a lot
and been in a lot of pain, those 14 years.
I understand the psychology of it, that a 14-year-old can`t make these kind of decisions, but at the same time, I also understand that this person is
in a great amount of pain.
I don`t know if she`s going to live long enough to actually reach the age where you feel that it`s age appropriate for her to want to stop medical
treatment. It`s a very difficult decision, but this is someone who is in pain every day.
She does not want to be in pain every day. I think if you`re 14 or if you`re 18, you understand that very well. And I think she understands that.
And I think that the government always wants to intrude on these type of situations and sometimes they`re correct.
Sometimes you do have to get involved. But in this type of case where there`s -- where everyone has kind of talked to her, everyone has decided
that this is kind of what she wants, I don`t know if you want to continue this person to be in pain for this long.
PINSKY: Let me throw another wrinkle into this which is that patients with spinal muscular atrophy sometimes, particularly some of the variants, get
more intelligent as they get older and they can actually have an accelerated intelligence through adolescence, so she might be sort of ahead
of her years.
That`s a possibility. I wish they would document that. What this disorder does is it destroys the cells that control voluntary motor activity.
Weakness, wasting of these muscles in the arms and legs particularly.
This particular variant develops in children between 6 and 18 months of age and then gets worse. It`s an inherited phenomenon and there is no cure for
it. I want to show you what her mother said when the daughter told her, she wanted to be taken off ventilator. Take a look.
(START VIDEO CLIP)
JEN BOLDEN, JERIKA BOLDEN`S MOTHER: I said, Jerika, I love you that much that I will -- I will not let you suffer. If that`s -- if it`s that bad,
then it`s okay. Mom will find a way to be okay.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Lisa, I`m sure you have an opinion.
LISA BLOOM, ATTORNEY: I do. I think the decision starts with her, but it does not end with her. The first question is to her, is this something that
she wants? She has said yes. Then we go to her parents, and her mother, who none of us can put ourselves in the shoes of this mother and what she has
gone through. She says yes.
Then we need an independent third party to come in and evaluate and make sure that a child, and she is a child, legally, at 14, is making this
decision of her own free will, of sound mind, that she has enough maturity, and I think if all three of those people say yes, then the decision is yes
and we have to respect it.
[19:05:00] PINSKY: Let me get another opinion. Joining us via Skype is Bishop Council Ned, a member of Project 21, a black leadership group, he`s
a Pennsylvania state constable. Counselor, you don`t think Jerika should be allowed to end her own life. Tell me why.
BISHOP COUNCIL NEDO II, PENNSYLVANIA STATE CONSTABLE: Well, you know, I don`t think that she`s mature enough to make this decision. You know, I
look at the pictures of her. I don`t know the girl, I`ve never met her, but from the videos I`ve seen, she`s a sweet child filled with joy.
I think she has an opportunity to inspire a lot of people, maybe even inspire a cure for this particular disease. But the fact is, we don`t let
14-year-olds make any decisions in this world, in this life, in this country.
And especially this is the ultimate decision, we`re going to place this in the hands of a 14-year-old, and the government just gonna stand by and say,
you know what? We are just going to let her do this? We don`t let any other 14-year-olds make these sorts of decisions.
And there are lots of young people, lots of adults who face all sorts of decisions, have all sorts of debilitating diseases, and I think also to
some extent, you`re minimizing mental health issues.
So someone`s got a mental health issue and they decide they want to kill themselves, well, why are we going to intervene in this case and not in the
PINSKY: Yeah. I mean, it`s a challenging philosophical and clinical situation. But Judy, I`m looking at these videos, and this does not look
like a woman or young lady in distress, right? She says she`s in pain all the time but if she is, it`s pretty well controlled.
She has quality of life, she has, you know, some joy in her life and council makes a good point, she might find a way to create more meaning by
maybe being of service or something when she`s older. I mean, this would be a tough one for me.
HO: That`s right. And certainly at least what we`re seeing is that she has glimpses of good moments, happy moments, joyous moments in her life, and
this is another thing about a 14-year-old`s brain.
Sometimes they forget a lot easier than us adult brains. They sometimes have a memory and then they can`t recall it later on when they`re trying to
make a decision.
PINSKY: Particularly when they`re in a state, a certain state, they don`t remember what it was like when they were in a different state, right?
HO: That`s right. It`s very similar to that object permanence issue we talk about where if something is not permanent right away, they forget about it.
HO: And so this is sort of what she`s experiencing now. I do believe that we see some glimpses of good quality of life, so if there`s ways to
increase that more, then should she be at least using the council of multiple people, her parents, an independent person before she made her
PINSKY: Lisa, go ahead.
BLOOM: But it`s not for us to decide. It`s her life. It is her life. You might make another decision if you were in chronic pain and you had an
incurable disease, but this is the decision she wants to make about her life.
And if she`s of sound mind and there`s no evidence of any mental health issues that I`ve read about in this case, and if her mother, who is in the
closest position, you know, to her, makes the same decision and if an independent third party can evaluate her, I think we have to respect her
decision about her life.
HO: Right. And that`s actually my point, Lisa. I wasn`t actually disagreeing with you. I think she needs to have multiple people make this
PINSKY: Council, last thoughts before we take a break.
NED II: I`m not a psychologist or psychiatrist, but is it the desire to commit suicide a mental health affliction in and of itself?
PINSKY: It -- it -- yeah, I agree. It`s a complex issue and it can be, for sure. We will keep it go. We will keep this conversation going. We need to
decide whose business is it when somebody wishes to end their life. Whose really business is it? I`ve got a woman who hopes to intervene in this
And later, the NFL anthem protest is growing but was 9/11 the appropriate day to do this? We`ll talk about it after this.
[19:10:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
(START VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When Jerika Bolen asked for a prom, she did not think it would end up like this.
BOLEN: Not really. I thought it was going to be, like, a low key, but it`s really awesome.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: For her last wish, Jerika said she wanted a prom. Because of her condition, Jerika lives in constant, intense pain, and only
has the use of some of her muscles. Next months, she`ll go into hospice care.
BOLEN: It makes my heart explode. It`s so crazy that people want to come for little me. I`m nothing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Oh, my God, that is -- she`s so sweet. Jerika Bolen, 14 years old, suffering from an incurable illness called spinal muscular atrophy and
she`s made the decision to end her life. But some disability rights groups are trying to get involved here.
I`m back with Lisa, Bradford, and Judy. Joining us by the phone is Carrie Ann Lucas, attorney, founder and executive director of Disabled Parents
Rights. And Carrie Ann, you want Child Protective Services involved here. Tell me about that.
CARRIE ANN LUCAS, ATTORNEY, FOUNDER AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF DISABLED PARENTS RIGHTS: Well, if any other 14-year-old, a non-disabled, sought to
end their life, Child Protective Services would be involved and would view that as a concern that a child`s not getting adequate mental health or
And so that`s -- that`s our concern, is when you look through the lens of any other 14-year-olds, and 14-year-olds have a rough time.
LUCAS: Undoubtedly, 14-year-olds, it`s a rough time in all 14-year-olds` lives or most 14-year-olds. So that`s our concern. And there`s no
population I work with on a regular basis -- I work -- we see teenagers and angst all the time.
PINSKY: Carrie Ann, let me ask you this. Is there -- is there some result from an evaluation that would have you cosigning her wishes? Is there any -
- is there any scenario you can imagine?
LUCAS: Well, I can imagine a number of different scenarios. Under the scenario of having spinal muscular atrophy, which is not acutely terminal
for Jerika or any other teenager.
SMA type 2 is not -- is not a condition that`s really much unlike the condition that I lived with or -- and certainly it`s exactly the same of
many parents that I work with. I work with mothers and fathers who have SMA type 2 all the time.
PINSKY: Wait, you work with parents? Hold on a second. You work with parents of SMA kids, is that right?
LUCAS: No. Well, I work with parents of SMA kids, but I primarily work with parents who have SMA type 2.
[19:15:00] PINSKY: I see.
LUCAS: We`re talking people who -- this young woman has a rich life in front of her. She should be looking forward to college and high school. And
growing up and having a family. If that`s what she so chooses to do and having a career.
I know people with SMA type 2 just like her who have similar progression as her that live better -- that are living rich and fulfilling adult lives.
PINSKY: Bradford, you wanted to get -- hang on a second, Carrie Ann. Sorry, hang on. Bradford, you wanted to make a comment here.
COHEN: Yeah. I mean, listen, she lives off a ventilator. Her quality of life in her own eyes is not good. She`s living in pain every day. I don`t
know who you work with, but you don`t work with this young lady, and this young lady`s in pain every day.
Is there an age appropriate where she feels she`s in so much pain and she has to live with this so badly that you feel that she can make the right
decision? So if she`s 18, would you be okay with that decision or would you still say no?
She needs to get more mental health. We need to get the government involved because the government needs to tell people when -- the amount of pain that
they should live with in order to end their own lives?
I think the government should stay out of it. I think that I agree -- and you`re going to get me on this one, I have to agree with Lisa Bloom that
you actually get a third party evaluator.
The third party evaluator looks at this young lady, talks to this young lady and figures this out, and if these are her wishes, this is what should
be done. She lives in pain every day.
COHEN: That is what she says. That is what the medical physicians say.
PINSKY: Judy -- Judy, what do you feel as medical evaluator?
HO: Well, listen, you know, this is exactly why I bring in people to evaluate decision making capacity, and people like trained psychologists do
this for older individuals who might be losing decision making capacity or where that`s a question.
And I think for a 14-year-old, that`s a similar process, because we`re not exactly sure about her ability to make this type decision. She can
obviously make decisions about what she wants to wear that day, what she wants to eat.
But can she make a decision about whether to end her life? I think this issue is pretty similar to older adults who might be going through dementia
and wondering if they can make that.
PINSKY: But you heard what Carrie Ann was saying, these people with spinal muscular atrophy. I`ve read this too, that they can live well into
adulthood. And Lisa, I know you`re just recovering from Bradford having said he agreed with you, so I`ll give you a chance to respond here or ring
in with us.
BLOOM: You know, listen, I want.
COHEN: It won`t be long. It won`t be for long.
BLOOM: . I want to show some respect to Carrie Ann because I think it is important to keep in mind that, you know, some people in our culture are
willing to write off the lives of disabled people a little too quickly.
And so we do want to be very, very careful before we allow a person under the age of 18 to make this decision, and we want to make sure that she`s
making it of sound mind, that she really is in chronic pain, et cetera.
And I think Carrie Ann makes a very good point about that, that we have to look very, very carefully, just because she`s in a wheelchair, just because
she has an illness, just because she is on a ventilator, her life is still valuable. I think that`s Carrie Ann`s point.
PINSKY: And Carrie Ann.
PINSKY: Hang on -- hang on. I`m gonna give you the last word. But -- but why not -- let`s honor Bradford`s decision and idea, get the government out
and get spinal muscular atrophy patients involved that maybe Skype with her or Face Time and, you know, the people to inspire her, be of service to
her, to help her understand how her life could go forward.
LUCAS: That`s something that our community has certainly reached out to her and I hope she does reach out to them, but there`s a big distinction here.
This young woman is not on a ventilator. She is not on a ventilator 24/7. She uses a BiPAP. Similar to something that tens of thousands of Americans
who have sleep apnea use every year.
PINKSY: Yes. I wonder about that. Because I don`t see it here in this footage.
LUCAS: I am a person who uses a ventilator. I am trached. I use a ventilator 24/7 and that does not diminish quality of life, and I can point
to hundreds of other people who are professionals, who are doctors, who are lawyers, who are teachers, who are professors all of whom use ventilators.
We`re parents, we`re active in our communities, we volunteer in our communities. We have rich, fulfilling lives as well and that`s an important
This young woman will not die quickly. She will not die by simply stopping the BiPAP. The only way she`ll die is if someone gives her medication to
hasten her death and that`s our concern.
PINSKY: Okay, well that`s not like to happen. But Carrie Ann, please reach out to her. I hope you have some -- some success in inspiring her because I
do kind of sense that she could live on with some degree of joy and productivity. Thank you very much, everybody.
Next, find out why actor Rob Lowe was not happy with some of the NFL players on opening day. And later, the hot car dad trial. What are his
chances of being found not guilty? Evidence stacked against him. We`ll get into it after this.
[19:20:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s already a lot of attention from the national anthem because of Colin Kaepernick`s protest of racial injustice and police
COLIN KAEPERNICK, PLAYER: I`m going to continue to sit, I`m going to continue to stand with the people that are being oppressed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 15th anniversary of 9/11. So, the question yesterday was who and how many would join Kaepernick in his call for change? The game in
Seattle saw both the Seahawks and the Dolphins taking stances before the game.
The Kansas City chiefs also standing arm in arm with quarterback Marcus Peters. They`re off to the right, raising a fist at the end of the line.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: The ground swell of support for San Francisco`s Colin Kaepernick Sunday, it`s NFL`s opening day, the 49ers will play tonight, kickoff is
just coming up here.
Back with Lisa, Bradford, and Judy, and joining us, Ephraim Salaam, former NFL player and NFL commentator. Ephraim, players walking arm in arm, some
kneeling, some with raised fists. Interesting, but did you expect this on 9/11?
EPHRAIM SALAAM, FORMER NFL PLAYER: I did. Because once you`re in the middle of a movement and you feel a certain type of way and you want to protest,
are there any days off?
I don`t know if you have a day off from protesting. And I get how sensitive doing it on 9/11 is for the majority of the country when they`re looking
and they want to pay their respects to the men and women who died at 9/11.
But this protest isn`t against those people. It`s not turning a blind eye to the travesty that happened on 9/11 in this country, but the protest is
just that. It`s a protest about the injustice that are going on in our society today.
[19:25:00] PINSKY: So, again, I`m trying to -- you know, Ephraim, we got into this conversation last time, like, what -- what exactly does he -- is
he asking for? Is there a specific sort of position statement or mandate or set of goals that people are asking for?
SALAAM: Well, it has to be justice and equality for all. It can`t just be skewed to where so many of these, you know, police-related killings are
going unpunished. No one`s getting convicted. No one is losing jobs.
It`s to the point where something better has to be done as a society, and, you know, kudos goes out to Colin Kaepernick because what was seen first to
be selfish and anti-American has really resonated with a lot of people and a lot of people have spoken out, including veterans of the armed forces.
They`ve spoken and -- and -- and actually come to his aid because there is a lot of injustice going on in this country. This is a great country. The
country we live in is a great country, because, number one, it allows us to do something like this. It allows Colin Kaepernick to protest and be within
his rights in this country.
PINSKY: Lisa, how do we know when we`ve gotten where Ephraim and Kaepernick would like us to go? You know what I mean, I -- I -- I.
BLOOM: Well, you know, I think one of the mantras of the Black Lives Matter Movement is, stop killing us. When we stop having hundreds of unarmed
African-Americans killed by police every year, that will be a good start.
You know, on 9/11, racial minorities in this country don`t get a break from discrimination. My phone in my office is ringing in my civil rights law
firm for race discrimination cases on 9/11 just like any other day.
So, this was not a 9/11 memorial, by the way. I think that`s important. This was a football game. This is where these guys work. And they were
making a nonviolent, completely legal protest about racial injustice in this country.
And it got us talking about it. It got the nation talking about it. So, I would say it was very successful.
PINSKY: And Bradford, no one -- I haven`t heard anyone object to Kaepernick`s right to do what he did or anyone`s right to do whatever
they`ve done. That is -- if anything else, we`ve all sort of endorsed, as people doing whatever they want to do in terms of defiance or making a
But I`m -- I get so confused about where we`re going, what`s the plan, what do we want to do here?
COHEN: Dr. Drew, I agree with you a hundred percent. You know, the problem is this. There`s twofold, really. Why don`t you start at home to begin
with, with the injustice, how about we look at the NFL. Do you remember the last black commissioner the NFL had? They never had one. Okay?
How about you look at the NFL and head coaches or even offensive coaches? 80 out of 85 offensive coaches are white. They have five black coaches in
the whole league. How many owners of NFL teams are black? How about that? How about you start with the NFL?
So, instead of what I view, and even my -- and I like to go back to my mom, who`s texting me during the break, she used to sit in -- she used to do
sit-ins in the `60s, even she feels this is disrespectful to the country. I understand.
Listen, I`m not objecting to his right. He can do anything he wants. People can burn the flag if they want to. I personally find that offensive as
well, more offensive than this, but why don`t you start at home?
Why don`t you start protesting the NFL? The injustices in a league that has all white owners, it`s all white run, and you have black individuals.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How do you know they`re not protesting that?
PINSKY: Hold on. Let me ask Ephraim. Ephraim, that`s a very -- because that`s a very discrete and I think a very noble -- I mean, appropriate
goal. What about that? Are people making noise?
SALAAM: There is -- there are people making noise. Actually, the NFL a couple years ago implemented what we call the Rooney Rule where every team
before hiring new coaches, they have to hire or interview with minority coaches across the board. And you know.
COHEN: That went down the toilet.
SALAAM: Yeah, we`re falling short. We`re falling short.
COHEN: That went down the toilet.
SALAAM: You`re right.
COHEN: Falling short isn`t the word.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But, Drew.
COHEN: Between 2012 and 2016, you fell over 10 percent. They hire white coaches. The mantra in the NFL is you can`t win with a black coach.
PINSKY: What? Really?
COHEN: That`s it.
COHEN: It used to be a hundred percent. A hundred percent. The NFL...
SALAAM: That mantra -- that mantra -- that mantra is now gone, because we did have two black coaches against each other in the Super Bowl, one of
them had to win.
COHEN: A hundred percent, I agree.
SALAAM: Remember, they said you couldn`t win with a black quarterback? Doug Williams won the Super Bowl.
[19:30:00] COHEN: You`re a hundred percent right. But why not -- can I speak for one minute?
PINSKY: Hang on. Hang on.
PINSKY: I`m going to cut everyone`s mike off because all I hear is gobbly goop right now. Bradford, there`s a little bit of delay on yours and so we
We got on top you and it`s impossible to -- to anybody to be heard. Judy, I`ve not heard from you. I`m going to give you a chance to talk.
HO,IST: Okay, well, as a die hard 49er fan for almost 20 years, I love this team. I don`t even know if I personally love Kaepernick because of some of
the other things that he does off the field.
And I think that`s why he`s actually getting some of these unfair media attention because what he`s doing is fine. I know that everybody agrees
with that. He`s actually backed his words with his own money. He has donated $1 million dollars on September 1st.
PINSKY: Finally. Yeah.
HO: . that`s right. He has donated his own money for civil rights organizations and things that would propel this movement. This is something
that he believes in. I believe it`s an appropriate medium for him. This is where he works, he`s televised every week. This is one way to get his
message out there.
Unfortunately because of all the stuff he`s doing outside of the football field and the negative attention he`s getting, people believe it`s another
attention getting behavior and I think give him a chance and let him make a statement.
PINSKY: I`ll hold tight after the break. Next up, I got Ashleigh Banfield dropping a bomb today. I`ll show that to you. We`ll discuss after the
[19:35:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
(START VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As the NFL returns to the spotlight, Colin Kaepernick`s peaceful protest has sparked conversation about his aim to shed light on
the oppression of minorities in this country.
COLIN KAEPERNICK, PLAYER: Players aren`t comfortable speaking what`s really on their mind and what`s right because they`re afraid of consequences that
come along with it, and that`s not an ideal environment for anybody, and I think that also speaks to, you know, the oppression and culture that we
have here where if you don`t fall in line, then we`re going get you out.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: NFL commissioner Roger Goodell addressed the Kaepernick controversy on NBC`s Today Show. Take a look at this.
(START VIDEO CLIP)
ROGER GOODELL, NFL COMMISSIONER: Listen, I support our players speaking out on issues that they think need to be changed in our society. We don`t live
in a perfect society, Matt. Our players have strong views about things. So, I support our players speaking out against that. But that`s what the focus
should be on, the changes he wants to see in our society.
MATT LAUER, HOST OF TODAY SHOW: But are you proud or does it make you nervous when you see it?
GOODELL: Well, I think when our players speak out and they feel strongly and passionate about something, I think it`s a good thing for us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Back with Lisa, Bradford, Judy, and Ephraim. Ephraim, the -- Goodell says he wants to support any time the players feel passionate about
something yet he denied the cowboys permission to wear helmet decals that were going to honor the five slain Dallas police officers. Why the double
standard you think?
SALAAM: Well, the double standard is because he can control that. He can control the uniform. The NFL has the standard uniform. You can`t make any
adjustments to it.
PINSKY: I see.
SALAAM: . or you`ll be fined, period.
PINSKY: Got it.
SALAAM: When a person, as an individual, decides that he wants to take a stand and do something, that`s of his own volition, that`s his own personal
beliefs, so he has the ability to do that. But once you start messing with the logos and putting different things or meanings on the uniform, the
uniform, across the NFL, they will not stand for that at all.
PINSKY: Ephraim, didn`t I see a thing in the paper today where some of the guys were wearing special shoes for 9/11? I didn`t understand that. So,
they would get fined.
SALAAM: They got fined.
PINSKY: Just wearing special shoes essentially.
SALAAM: Yeah, they got fined. Anything that`s not deemed acceptable or a part of the uniform in the NFL, no matter what it is, no matter how much it
symbolizes, then you get fined. DeAngelo Williams lost his mother to breast cancer so he decided he wanted to wear pink cleats the whole season.
But you couldn`t do that because the month of October is breast cancer awareness month in the NFL, so any time you wear something pink outside of
that, then you will get fined, which, to me, is ridiculous.
PINSKY: Well, over at CNN, my colleague Ashley Banfield was discussing the comments earlier today and she dropped this little bomb. Take a listen.
(START VIDEO CLIP)
ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: So that makes me think that`s kind of Carte Blanche for all the players to do whatever they want and I sort of go back
to the Ray Rice moment where he laid out his girlfriend in an elevator on video and nobody took a knee. There were no grassroots on the field
protests about that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: Lisa, domestic violence has been a big problem for the NFL, but the lack of clarity, this is what I`m getting at here, the lack of clarity of
Kaepernick`s position, I think, is opening the door to positions like what Ashleigh just said.
BLOOM: Well, I don`t think it`s unclear. I think he`s protesting racism. But I do take issue with Ashleigh. Of course, I care very much about
domestic violence and just like Bradford wants to raise racism in the NFL, another important issue, you know, everybody tells me when I protest
something, why don`t you protesting that?
Why don`t you protest this? This is what Mr. Kaepernick is choosing to protest. Racism in our society is a big problem. Other people are free to
protest other issues. Don`t -- especially for a white person to tell a black person, why don`t you protest something else? I think it`s highly
offensive. Let him make his point.
COHEN: I`m not saying why don`t you protest anything. I`m saying why don`t.
COHEN: Okay. His point is racism. His point is racism. Racism is in the NFL. It`s rampant. It`s rampant in the NFL. The fact is, they don`t hire
black people. They let them go out there.
SALAAM: The last I checked, they`re not shooting black people on the field, all right? So, let`s not get it misconstrued. I understand what you`re
saying, but the fact of the matter is, these are young black lives and young minority lives being shot down by people of authority, people we pay.
COHEN: A hundred percent, but that`s not what he`s saying.
SALAAM: Do you really want to compare that to having a black owner or a black coach? We`re talking about a loss of life.
[19:40:00] COHEN: No, don`t twist my words.
SALAAM: I`m not twisting your words. I`m just saying what you just said.
COHEN: Oh, yes, you are, because what Kaepernick has said is that he is standing up against racism. Racism is rampant in the NFL. So, stand up
against the NFL as well. Walk out.
HO: Why don`t you stand up against it? Why does it all have to be on his shoulders?
PINSKY: Hold on. Let me get Judy. Judy, go ahead. Let me get the Kaepernick fan in here. Judy.
HO: Okay. All right. I`m a 49er fan, not a Kaepernick fan. Okay. But -- but, you know, my point is this. He actually put out a position statement
on August 28, and I think he explains his position pretty clearly, and he`s talking not about really the NFL, but just in general in this country.
How he feels like he really feels for the people who fight for America, but on the battle field and when they come back, he feels there`s
discriminatory treatment, and that`s what he`s really protesting.
He`s not protesting against 9/11, he`s not even necessarily protesting against the NFL. He is protesting against race relation issues in America
SALAAM: The treatment of people in America. That`s what he`s protesting.
SALAAM: So if you can sit there and say, protest your job and protest this and protest that, that doesn`t even -- it`s not even a correlation to that.
HO: Let`s show the man some respect.
PINSKY: I just -- I just -- I fully respect, but Ephraim, how do we get where he wants to go? How long is that going to take? How do we know when
he can stand up again?
SALAAM: This is -- this is what we`re doing. This is -- we`re getting to it now. The dialogue and the open dialogue and having people agree and
disagree, the stimulation of conversation is how you get to it. Because eventually, we`ll all come together and say, okay, how do we right this?
PINSKY: Hey, Ephraim, talk to your friend, Kaepernick. You`re making perfect sense to me. He doesn`t make the kind of clarity that you make to
me. So I really think you ought to help him get his messages clearer.
HO: Can you be his speech writer?
PINSKY: Would you please help us help him.
SALAAM: We`re getting there. He`s getting there. But look what Kaepernick has done alone. Look what he did by himself. Look what the force that he`s
generated with that one single action. Now he`s opened it up for everybody to really dig in.
PINSKY: Fair enough.
BLOOM: Some people are just raising awareness, drawing attention. Other people are drawing up policies. We are seeing changes, police cameras, more
diversity in police forces, a lot of attention being drawn to the issue by role models like Kaepernick.
PINSKY: Lisa, we`ve been having this conversation all year. We`ve been struggling, struggling, and struggling. And things are happening, but we
talk about, you know, achievable goals.
And I want to get these things done and I want to see they get there. And Ephraim makes perfect sense to me. I get a little confused when I hear
Kaepernick. That`s all I`m saying.
SALAAM: Dr. Drew.
SALAAM: All I`m saying, we all know football is a behemoth when it comes to viewership and people paying attention, so the fact that he took this stage
to do it on has opened it up far greater than any politician or any social activist could have even got us to the point where we are now. And we still
have more to come.
HO: That`s right. And I believe he`s already achieved one of his goals because we`re talking about it right now.
PINSKY: Fair enough. We got to go. Next up, "hot car death" trial back this.
[19:45:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
(START VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Evidence shows Justin Ross Harris knew his 22-month -old son was in his sweltering SUV. After breakfast, Harris was seen strapping
his 22-month-old son, Cooper, into his car seat. He drove less than a mile away to this home depot support center where he works as a web designer.
Normally, Harris takes Cooper to a day care on site, but not on this day. Instead, Harris headed inside the office, and left his toddler in the rear-
facing car seat in a blazing Georgia son.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They`re going to bring expert witnesses to tell the jury that, you know, this really can happen, notwithstanding all the texting and
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: A second attempt at jury selection underway in Georgia. Justin Ross Harris`s trial moved to a different venue in the spring, where seating a
jury proved to be difficult. Impartiality was cited as the reason. Jurors at the time were asked if they`d seen our show, even, as part of the sort
of screen for whether or not they had been biased.
Back with Lisa, Bradford, and Judy, and joining me by phone, Philip Holloway, CNN legal analyst, who is covering this trial. Philip, how did
the jury selection go today?
PHILIP HOLLOWAY, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Good evening. You know, jury selection today was -- went better than it did the first time around, but that being
said, about 20 or so of the jurors that they finally got to after dealing with the hardship requests still said that they had at least some bias in
Now, the lawyers for each side still have the opportunity to flesh out what that bias might be and there are literally hundreds more that they can
choose from if they don`t get enough from this initial bunch. So, this really could still take a while.
PINSKY: Does -- it`s been two years since this happened, I think, now, right? Does Harris stand a better chance with this region and this jury?
HOLLOWAY: Well, the general idea is that by moving the trial some five hours away from the metropolitan Atlanta television and radio media market,
you`re going to find people, hopefully, that have maybe heard something about the case but weren`t so saturated with constant daily updates.
Some of it, perhaps, inaccurate, that sways their opinion. People in the small southern coastal town in southeast Georgia, they generally say that
they heard something about it, but it`s been a while.
But now that they`re back in the courtroom, and they`re hearing about this again, they`re putting the math together and they`re saying, look, now I
remember about this case, and yes, I did form an opinion two years ago.
PINSKY: I must say how they couldn`t. Phil, thank you for that report. The prosecution is going up this guy`s character. They plan to show evidence
that he was sexting as many as six underage girls. They found that he had been googling both babies in hot cars, and how to survive in prison. Lisa,
how are they going to defend this?
[19:50:00] BLOOM: Good luck. I mean, they can try to keep out the texting, because maybe that`s not relevant. That`s what was happening during the
time that this poor little baby was suffocating in the car, but the Google report.
PINSKY: That`s not relevant? How is that not relevant?
BLOOM: Well because it doesn`t matter what he was doing. What matters is what is in his mind at the time that he left the baby in the car, was it
intentional or was it negligent? And the Google search is the smoking gun in this case. It`s just too much of a coincidence and obviously not a
coincidence at all that he googled what happens to a child in a hot seat car.
PINSKY: Unless -- unless -- unless Bradford, he had done this before and was looking at, you know, how close -- because he`s a sex addict. He`s on
his phone all the time. He is sexting. he`s doing all kinds of nonsense. Maybe he did this or nearly did it before.
COHEN: It could be. Here`s what is unusual. It might be a full moon, because I`m actually agreeing with Lisa Bloom once again. The Google
searches are the things that`s going to hurt him. But, that being said, we don`t know if he`s Google searched this way before this or if this was just
one time he Google searched.
The thing how to survive in prison, I don`t think that`s going to come in. But the Google searches on what happens to a baby when they are in a hot
car, that is definitely something that most likely is going to come in, and that`s something that is very damning.
Now, that being said, you know, these cases happen quite often, 37 last year, I think. What`s different from this one than all the other ones? Why
is this one murder as opposed to manslaughter or something else?
BLOOM: I disagree. I think the problem is consciousness of guilt.
PINSKY: Judy, I want to.
COHEN: No. How to survive in prison? You could be watching a T.V. show.
BLOOM: Why is he thinking about prison if he`s not committing about crimes? I don`t Google how to survive in prison on a random day.
PINSKY: I`ve got to go to break.
COHEN: Here`s the other side to that.
COHEN: Go ahead. I`ll say it when you come back.
PINSKY: All right, fair enough. Also, when we come back, one of Harris` former friends who does not believe him here after the break. We`ll be
[19:55:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
PINSKY: We are back with Lisa, Bradford, and Judy. Joining me by phone, Chris Wilkinson, a former friend of Justin Ross Harris. Chris, did you
before this disaster, did you think he was a good guy and a good father?
CHRIS WILKINSON, FORMER FRIEND OF JUSTIN ROSS HARRIS: Absolutely, Dr. Drew. I mean, when all this first happened, obviously hot car death is something
that bothers a lot of people and being a former respiratory therapist, it bothered me a great deal.
And I just couldn`t conceive that anyone could do this. When it happened to him, we`re like, gosh, if it could happen to him, it could happen to
anybody, because he`s such a great guy. To the point a lot of us defended him at first.
We, of course, had no clue what was actually going on over in Marietta, because if we did, that would have been a different story.
PINSKY: You`re still hearing something called Baby Cooper`s Law, a federal issue to prevent hot car deaths. If anything else, this case has raised
awareness that this is not uncommon thing. How does this particular initiative work?
WILKINSON: Baby Cooper`s Law is a three-step piece of legislation, and the first part of the legislation we`re asking for stiffer penalties for those
who do intentionally leave their kids. The reason for that is, not all states have laws and the ones that do often times have to be charged under
And that makes it extremely hard for prosecutors because they have to prove there`s a pattern of abuse there. And oftentimes that`s a parent ot
caregiver`s first interaction with law enforcement is when a child is left.
The second part of Baby Cooper`s Law asks for protections in all 50 states as well as federal lands such as national parks and military bases, for
civilian rescuers not to be criminally or civilly prosecuted for rescuing a child or an animal.
The last piece of the Cooper`s Law and the most important part in my opinion is federally mandated car seat alarms. It is completely outrageous
to me we don`t have alarms for this when we have alarms to let you know you left your keys. These alarms...
PINSKY: Yeah, that`s interesting.
WILKINSON: . these alarms -- these alarms will work on both a pressure type sensor, as well as a carbon dioxide sensor.
PINSKY: Okay. Hang on. Bradford is against government intervention. How about this, Bradford? Is this seem like a reasonable thing?
COHEN: Yeah, part of it I like. You know, the changing of the criminal laws I wouldn`t touch that. The stuff about having a buzzer going off, I 100
percent behind that. Not only that -- I`m a brand new dad, so I`ve looked at these products. I don`t think I would -- I mean, I would.
PINSKY: You could. It gets stressful being a parent.
COHEN: I know. I agree, I agree. So I have looked into products. They actually make products. But I always thought, why is it not already in the
car, some sort of a buzzer or a weight seat that you can, you know, you know that you`re leaving a baby.
PINSKY: Yeah, it makes perfect sense.
COHEN: That being said, I love that. I love that. And I also think, you know, the protection for individuals that see babies or see a pet in the
car and, you know, they smash a window, I`ve come across where those people get criminally prosecuted for stuff, for criminal mischief, not for babies
but for dogs and cats. So I like the law for that.
PINSKY: all right. Judy?
COHEN: But the beginning part about the criminal stuff, I`m not a fan.
PINSKY: Judy, you want to comment on this?
HO: Yeah, you know, this is actually much more common than we would care to think. It`s over 600 cases in the last 18 years. And this last year, in
particular, the numbers have tripled in that year. And so what we know though is out of these cases, 53 percent of them are parents who
unintentionally did this.
Like you said, Dr. Drew, they`re stressed, they forgot, they really did. And so I can see this initiative and perhaps some of the technological
devices helping with that.
Unbelievably, 12 or 13 percent of parents actually do leave them on purpose, thinking, my child is going to be okay. It`s only going to be 20,
30 minutes. Then they lose track in the store and it only takes a few moments, Dr. Drew, for some people.
PINSKY: All right. Thank you, panel. Thank you all for watching. Chris, thank you for your commentary here. We`ll see you next time. Our friend,
Nancy Grace, is up next.