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Britain Trying to Diffuse Tensions with Iran; Boris Johnson Expected to Win as the New British Prime Minister; Crashing out of E.U. Would Push British Economy "Off a Cliff"; Gordon Brown, Former British Prime Minister, is Interviewed About Iran and Brexit; Documenting Back Row America; Chris Arnade, Author, "Dignity, "is Interviewed About Back Row America. Aired 1- 2p ET
Aired July 22, 2019 - 13:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[13:00:00] CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hello, everyone, and welcome to "Amanpour." Here's what's coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GORDON BROWN, FORMER BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I think Boris Johnson should be very much aware that the background to this is the failure of the
American administration to stay with the Iranian deal.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
The former British prime minister, Gordon Brown, joins me for an exclusive interview as tensions with Iran escalate a day before a new leader is
installed in Downing Street.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRIS ARNADE, AUTHOR, "DIGNITY": Well, you see somebody who votes the way you don't vote, before simply saying, "Oh, what a jerk or what a lazy
person or, you know -- or they must have mental problems," spend 15 minutes talking to him.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: Chris Arnade to tells our Michel Martin why he quit Wall Street to document the lives of back row America.
Plus, confronting toxic masculinity. Award-winning author and filmmaker, Tim Samuels, joins me about his new book, "Future Man."
Welcome to the program, everyone. I'm Christiane Amanpour in London.
Britain is trying to diffuse mounting tensions with Iran just today before this country gets a new prime minister. The issue, Iran's Revolutionary
Guards capture of a British flag oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz on Friday, claiming that it was violating international maritime rules. In
reality, it is a tit-for-tat escalation after the U.K. help seize a tanker carrying Iranian oil near Gibraltar.
The risky standoff will be a major test for the next British prime minister, who will be revealed on Tuesday. The former mayor of London,
Boris Johnson, is expected to win in what is a very limited vote within a special circle within his own Conservative Party. And he is already
demonstrated a risky willingness to vow to U.S. demands, hoping for preferential trade deals after Brexit. And his much-criticized stint as
foreign secretary has raised questions about how he would handle the current crisis with Iran.
His promise of Brexit, deal or no deal, is also highly risky. The former British prime minister, Gordon Brown, warned in a speech today that
crashing out of the E.U. would push the British economy "off a cliff." And I spoke to him in an exclusive interview about this constitutional crisis
which comes amid a rising strategic crisis in the Persian Gulf.
Prime minister Gordon Brown, welcome to the program.
It's a pleasure.
AMANPOUR: Let's start with sort of the crisis of the moment, which is Iran and its actions in the Persian Gulf, in the Strait of Hormuz. How does a
new prime minister deal with this kind of thing?
BROWN: It's very interesting because the minute I took over in Downing Street in 2007 we had the Glasgow at London bombing. So, you can prepare,
you can look at what you want to do, but events do take over.
Now, I think, Boris Johnson should be very much aware that the background to this is the failure of the American administration to stay with the
Iranian deal. And I think the background to this is also that Britain must remain solid with our European partners. But what he can do to persuade
President Trump to look again at the conditions in which he might sign a deal with Iran is mightily very important.
I am told whether it's right or wrong that Iran would accept tougher conditions, that they would move to high level of inspection earlier, if
that were something that America would press for. And this may be the basis on which this deal can be solved.
Now, the problem is that we're dealing with an explosive situation in the as a whole. And so, it does seem to me very important that President
Trump, in the light of all these incidents, looks at whether there can be a solid basis for a deal with Iran or whether he and the Republicans are
going to use this as an election issue. I think it really comes comments back to all of this. So, whatever is happening between Britain and Iran,
the background, the context is something that's got to be sorted out at some point and hopefully soon.
AMANPOUR: What does it say in a Brexit situation? Where do you think Boris Johnson would put British interests? And I ask this because it might
seem like an obvious question. But he did throw under the bus a key British diplomat in light of the fact that the president of the United
States was upset by this.
BROWN: Well, I think Boris Johnson is under a huge amount of pressure from his own Brexiteers, those people who are very hardline anti-European, and
they would prefer to see an even stronger relationship with the United States even if it's based on effectively taking instructions from President
Trump. So, I think he is under a great deal of pressure in that respect. But I do feel that he is going to have to show that he is also independent,
and I think this will be the test of the first few days.
For example, you know, when you become prime minister, you have calls. They go in a row. Who do you call first? Who takes the call first? Is it
going to be President Trump or is it Angela Merkel? Is it Emmanuel [13:05:00] Macron? And I think he's making decisions right from the word
go about what his priorities are in foreign policy.
Clearly, he has to get a deal on Brexit or try to get a deal on Brexit or get a resolution of Brexit. But, obviously, the American relationship is
incredibly important and he has got to work out in which areas is he going to agree with President Trump and which areas is he going to be at odds
with him. And clearly, the British policy has been while wanting a good relationship with America, to stick with the Europeans on Iran and I hope
that that will be the position that he takes to try to press the Americans that we must try and find a way forward.
AMANPOUR: Here's the thing. You were chancellor of the exchequer at the time, Tony Blair was prime minister. You have both have been scarred by
essentially Americans warmongering, let's put it that way, over Iraq.
AMANPOUR: I want to know whether or not that plays into what you think of right now. Because the Iranian foreign minister has basically said,
"Unlike the piracy in the Strait of Gibraltar, our action in the Persian Gulf is to uphold international maritime rules. As I said in New York, it
is Iran that guarantees the security of the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz. The U.K. must cease being an accessory to #economicterrorism of
the United States.
Prime Minister May has said that the next leader should try to continue to persuade the United States to come back into the deal or to really have a
realistic negotiation on a second deal. Do you believe that Boris Johnson will try to do that?
BROWN: I hope he tries to persuade the Americans the to do that. As I say, I think he is under pressure, as he was yesterday from Iain Duncan
Smith, who is one of the former leaders of the Conservative Party, simply go along with America, to accept that they are in the right on every issue
on this. But let's wait and see. I think the verdict -- the jury is out on this and a verdict await as few days. But the first moves of a prime
minister will be important.
AMANPOUR: It has been suggested by the Spanish that the Americans reached out to try to get the Brits to stop this ship over Gibraltar, that they had
been approached first. And they are suggesting, at least it has been printed, this, that the America is trying to lure Britain into causing or
being part of, you know, some kind of casus belli. And John Bolton, as you know, is very eager to confront Iran. "Excellent news. U.K. has detained
the super tanker, Grace 1, laden with Iranian oil bound for Syria in violation of E.U. sanctions. America and our allies will continue to
prevent regimes in Tehran and Damascus from profiting off this illicit trade."
So, yes, let's accept that there are sanctions against Syria. But does Britain with a new untested leader risk falling into this trap? I know
we've gone around it several times.
BROWN: Well, I think we have to accept that there was a breach of sanctions in relation to Syria. And the question then is whether there is
a longer-term strategy here. You know, was this just an incident where Britain was asked by America or given information that was relevant to the
breach of sanctions? And I think we've got the to go back to this, what is the long-term strategy? And it must be surely to prevent the proliferation
of nuclear weapons in the region, the most explosive region in the world. And for nuclear weapons to proliferate there is going to be a huge problem.
We've got to faceup to that.
AMANPOUR: Do you worry that a war or some kind of big military intervention could be on the table between the U.S., U.K., Iran?
AMANPOUR: I think that's unlikely. I do think it's unlikely. And I think to talk about it in these terms may suggest that both parties do not fear
an aggression on one of their parts. I think they're both trying to avoid a war, but I think they are fighting it, if you like, by another means in
which the breach of sanctions or piracy or whatever, I don't think we're getting to that stage yet.
I think the more important thing is the long-term security of this region and indeed, if the world is at stake if we don't find a solution to the
nuclear weapons issue.
AMANPOUR: Now to Brexit. You have spoken out regularly against a no deal Brexit and you made a speech and, you know, you're being very vocal now at
the last moment and you have been throughout. Let's talk about this. But first, let's listen to what President Trump who, obviously, is going to be
a very close ally of Boris Johnson has to say about Boris Johnson.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: I like Boris Johnson. Boris -- I spoke to him yesterday. I think he's going to do a great job. I think we're going
to have a great relationship. I think they've done a very poor job with Brexit. I think the previous prime minister has done a very bad job with
Brexit. What can I say?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BROWN: Well, you got to assume that he is going to try to build a good relationship with Boris Johnson, and we must wish a new prime minister well
and hope that things work out in the national interest. I think the problem he runs to, immediately into, is that he's made all these
[13:10:00] promises during this Conservative leadership campaign where he's basically been talking for a month only to a small number of people who are
on the right of British politics.
And so, he's made a promise that he will not pay the dues that were owed to the European Union. So, that's a real problem for the European Union if
we're breaking an agreement and it looks effectively like a declaration of economic war. He's promised that only those people who support a no deal
possibility will be in his cabinet.
Last week, the European Commission president made an offer that she said that she would be prepared to extend the deadline of October 31st, so there
was no cliff hedge. So, getting it right was more important than getting it quickly. And that seems to have been turned down.
So, his problem is that he enters Downing Street with these promises he's made. And, therefore, how does he honor all these promises and at the same
time get a deal?
AMANPOUR: And stick to the October 31st by hook or by crook. So, let's first, I want to ask you to reflect on this. This is what you said in the
Guardian newspaper today, that MPs must find the courage to stop the mindless no deal Brexit. Here are two quotes. "British history include
self-inflicted wounds, military disaster, such as the Charge of the Light Brigade and the fiasco of Gallipoli. But no peace time act of self-harm
can rival exiting the E.U. without a deal when we are so woefully unprepared."
BROWN: Yes. And I think that's important to recognize that he may think that putting no deal on the negotiating table is an act of strength, that
you're prepared to walk away. The trouble is that we, the people, most harmed by this possibility. So, like putting a gun to your own head. And
therefore, we've got to look what a no deal actually means.
What a no deal means is that on October the 31st, you end up with a situation as described by the cabinet secretary who is his most senior
public servant, who is going to be reporting to him tomorrow, that you have the ports clogged up, you'll then have the motorways clogged up, you then
have food prices going up, you're going to have the pound affected, you then have components and parts that cannot get through. And no matter what
preparations you have made, you face this as the reality of your first few weeks.
And then, of course, the long-term effects of less trade with Europe, remember just about 50 percent of our trade is with mainland Europe, and
jobs that are lost in the car industry, pharmaceuticals, the aviation, these are all big industries where we rely on selling to Europe, as well as
getting components from Europe. And I think we've got to face up to this, that a no deal is in nobody's interest, particularly, it's not in Britain's
interest. And it should, in all conscience and in the national interest be accepted, that this is not what we want and this is not what we've going
AMANPOUR: And yet, it's not because those who believe in the Boris view or the Boris way or the Farage way or, you know, the Jacob Rees-Mogg way,
believe that everybody, yourself and anybody who questions this is either undemocratic or a scaremonger.
BROWN: Or unpatriotic.
AMANPOUR: Or unpatriotic. In fact --
BROWN: Or betraying Britain, as they say.
AMANPOUR: Yes. Which is what you said, "When historians look back, they will be shocked to discover how such an act of economic self-harm that runs
wholly counter the national interest could ever be portrayed by Nigel Farage and Boris Johnson as the height of patriotism and criticism from
many quarters dismissed as betrayal."
BROWN: But that's basically the Nigel Farage view that has been put across over the last few months. You see, what is happening, and I think people
watching from around the world would want to understand this. There are two views of Britain competing with each other. And there's my view of
Britain that we're a tolerant outward-looking decent-minded and pragmatic nation. And it's the view that I think most people around the world have
taken of Britain over these years. We're empirical, we're rational, we get on with making things work.
But then there's this other view that is a sense of product of the loss of empire, it's a product of Britain's parliament sort of decline in status
that we are inward-looking, that we talk about standing alone all the time, the Dunkirk spirit, Britain is stronger when it's detached from its
neighbors and doesn't enter into foreign entanglements in Europe in particular.
And this view of Britain descends into an intolerance, an anti-immigrant feeling in some cases, lack of integration in our communities. And we have
always got to guard against that view of Britain. And, unfortunately, the Nigel Farage in particular. But some Conservative Party, their view of
Britain is exactly this inward-looking introverted insular view of Britain.
And I think unless we are far more upfront and say, "Look these two views of Britain exist. But only one in the long run can triumph. We're an
interdependent, interconnected world. We're in a world where we've got to work with other people. And so, we have got to be both tolerant and
outward-looking [13:15:00] and we've got to be pragmatic about the future. And it's that view of Britain that has been suffocated over these last year
or two, and it's that view of Britain that's going to come to the fore again if we've going to both sort out the problems we've got within our own
country, which caused Brexit in the first place and be a voice in the world that can make change happen in the interest of peace and stability.
AMANPOUR: I mean, we can't forget that your own party and it's very far- left incarnation right now with Jeremy Corbyn as the leader is also inward- looking and not a natural European.
BROWN: I think you would find most members of the Labour Party are pro- European. And I think you will also find that people want to be an internationalist party. And I think that retreat into isolationism is more
a feature of the Conservative right's reaction to the loss of empire and their sense that they never really wanted to be a part of the European
Union in the first place.
And these two views of Britain, we got to resolve this. We have to have a clear sense of ourselves as a country and we've got to be able to move
forward. And as I say, I cannot imagine we could move forward other than as an outward-looking country and other as a more tolerant country. And
certainly, if we can't move forward, if we're not a pragmatic country in our approach to affairs in the world.
AMANPOUR: Let me ask you a little bit about Boris Johnson, not just about his character but about his professional can do. So, in his final, he's
been a paid op-ed writer for The Daily Telegraph, right of center daily newspaper here. And now, that's coming to an end. But he writes, "We need
the can do attitude of the 1960s to help us get out of the E.U." And then he goes on to say, "They went to the moon 50 years ago. Surely today, we
can say the logistical issue is of the Irish border." I mean, forgetting that it was the Americans who went to the moon.
BROWN: But you see, what he takes out of the moon landing, is somehow the Americans have the technological problem, they were behind Russia, they
solved the problem. And why don't we solve the problem of a border with Northern Ireland. But the border with Northern Ireland is really a
And equally, the lesson you've got to take out of the space race, is for 30 years there was a space race and then the competitors got together, Russia,
America, 25 other countries, now part of the international space station. And I would put it to him that if you can find a way of cooperating in one
of the most sensitive areas in cyber space and you can find a way of moving beyond the old tensions between Russia and America in space, surely we can
find a way of cooperating with our neighbors on air. So, I take a different message out of the space race than Boris Johnson.
AMANPOUR: What about this, some of his closest colleagues within the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, when he was foreign minister, describes
his departure last year, when he resigned, as liberation day. That's what they said to the FT. One diplomat said, "Unpredictable, gaffe prone,
inconsistent, unfocused. We were delighted to see the back of him. You could almost touch the sense of relief around the place that he was
leaving." I mean, that was just as foreign minister. And now, he's going to be maybe prime minister.
BROWN: You know, all the people civil servants, others.
AMANPOUR: Yes. But that's true, right?
BROWN: Everybody is going to have different --
AMANPOUR: Everybody says that about him. Gaffe prone, unfocused, unprepared, buffoonery.
BROWN: What I'm more worried about --
AMANPOUR: You're Scottish National Party leader calls him a charlatan.
BROWN: What I'm worried about is his strategic judgement, and that's relevant to Scotland. Because he has been on record on a number of
occasions as opposing Scottish representation of its present level in Westminster, opposing the powers that have been given to the Scottish
Parliament, opposing the funding formula. He said a Scot should never be prime minister, which I thought was a jive against me. But I know
understand it to be a jive against Michael Gove who was his rival, who is also Scottish. And so, yes, he's on record with all these controversial
The question now, is he going to show the strategic judgment that will keep the union together, that will sort out the Brexit problem and will make
Britain a sensible partner in world affairs? Now, that's the question. And people will give him time the to do that as, of course, a prime
minister starting in office, he's got to be given a chance to show what he's capable of. But of course, these events that he's got to deal with
are now, it cannot wait --
AMANPOUR: I mean, you've been worried -- exactly. I mean, it's almost like there's no honeymoon for this kind of leader at this kind of time.
BROWN: I think about half an hour.
AMANPOUR: Yes, half an hour. And we've got a Brexit deadline of October 31st, which is like tomorrow.
BROWN: Well, it's 100 days to October 31st tomorrow and he's got to deal with the European Commission, he's then got to deal with the other
countries in Europe, because they will not sort of deal directly just with the European Commission, he has to get Ireland on board and then he's got
to get parliament on board. So, he's got to work very quickly to do this. And he will be tested on this. And it looks as if the promise he's made,
all the promises he's made, that he won't pay Europe and everything else, he cannot deliver on this unless he changes his approach.
AMANPOUR: One of the things you've also been concerned about, and you made a dramatic last-minute intervention into the Scottish referendum, and that
went the way [13:20:00] that everybody wanted it, well, at least the British wanted it, stay together.
BROWN: It was very close.
AMANPOUR: Very close. But you've also worried about a no deal Brexit ending the Union, Scotland will one day become independent, Ireland will
BROWN: There is a question about the future of the Union. And, of course, looking to London, a lot of people don't recognize that Britain is a multi-
national state. You got England, you got Wales, you got Northern Ireland and you've got Scotland.
And what has happened, of course, is Scotland voted very clearly that it would not want to leave the European Union. Northern Ireland voted to stay
in the European Union, although, you don't hear that from many of the Northern Ireland politicians. And the question is whether a British
government is sensitive enough to take into account all the views of the different parts of the United Kingdom.
And I do fear that if you have a rising nationalism on the part of Nigel Farage and indeed, if it were to be embraced by Boris Johnson, that that is
sort of hijack patriotism and to make it different from what it should be, which is a love of your country, not a them and us nationalism where you
are looking for enemies and you are -- if you like hijacking patriotism in favor of an intolerant position.
So, the future of Britain is on the agenda. The damage that is done by Scotland leaving the United Kingdom would be far greater than the damage of
Scotland leaving the European Union. And these are the kind of facts are got to be taken into account. Hundreds of thousands of jobs depend on
Scotland's membership of the United Kingdom. Far greater number of jobs in Scotland's membership of the European Union. And we've got to remember
that people's livelihoods are indeed at stake in this whole set of issues.
AMANPOUR: It's really remarkable times. And thank you very much for guiding us through them. Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, thanks.
BROWN: A pleasure. Thank you.
AMANPOUR: And a real risky state of affairs that we've just heard. Now, our next guest is someone whose ambition turned him away from his top job
at the center of power and money. Chris Arnade worked as a trader on Wall Street for almost 20 years. In his free time, he explored neighborhoods
like the South Bronx in New York. Armed with his camera, he met the people of those streets and used his photos to tell their stories.
Inspired, he left Wall Street and went on the road. He spent four years crossing the country to document what he calls back row America. His new
book "Dignity" is the culmination of that incredible journey. And our Michel Martin asked Arnade about stepping out of the rat race and into the
(BEGIN VIDEO TAPE)
MICHEL MARTIN, CONTRIBUTOR: Chris Arnade, thanks so much for joining us.
ARNADE: Thank you for having me.
MARTIN: Why Wall Street? What drew you there?
ARNADE: There wasn't many jobs available at the time. I had a PhD in physics. I was looking for --
MARTIN: You say that like, "Oh, yes. Like everybody is that way." Everybody has that. But I don't know. I would have though with a PhD in
physics that you could have had a lot of options.
ARNADE: At the time, there is -- it came down to two option. One of the meterology, which I did for a little bit, and the other was Wall Street.
And I was drawn by the challenge of Wall Street. I knew nothing about banking.
MARTIN: What did you do on Wall Street? What did you do there?
ARNADE: I was a trader.
MARTIN: You were a trader?
MARTIN: Presumably, you made a pretty good living?
ARNADE: I did. I did make -- made a very good living.
MARTIN: I mean, at some point, as you were counting the books, you started taking long walks, and what drew you to Hunts Point in the Bronx?
ARNADE: Part of it was I was told not to go.
MARTIN: Told by whom?
ARNADE: Other bankers. You know, when I heard about Hunts Point it was always in a negative light.
MARTIN: What did you think you were going to find there and what did you actually find there?
ARNADE: I don't want to further the stigma by saying what I think I was going to find. But I will say it was drugs and prostitution. The
negative, decay, violence, all those things, those ugly stigmas. What I found was, you know, a community that was, for lack of a better word,
beautiful and also very welcoming.
MARTIN: And when you say beautiful, tell me, what are you saying?
ARNADE: Physically -- just physically it faces south with not a lot of large buildings. So, you've got beautiful light. Additionally, though,
what I love is I love what I call almost industrial art, how people make art out of nothing. And Hunts Point has a lot of auto body shops. Has a
lot of junk yards. The way they display the junk is artistic.
And then what really drew me in were the pigeons. I see flocks of birds above and I kept looking at them and they look choreographed and the way
they were flying and they actually were choreographed. They were kept by people on roofs.
MARTIN: How did you start photographing people there? You know, how did that start?
ARNADE: People would want me to photograph them. You know, I stuck out often like a sore thumb. I was a White guy with a camera in a neighborhood
that was almost 100 percent African-American or Hispanic. And so, people would often come to me and ask me questions. And then when I --
MARTIN: Like what? Like what? What are you doing here?
ARNADE: Yeah. Simply, "Yo, what are you doing here?" [13:25:00] You know, as blunt as that.
MARTIN: And what did you say?
ARNADE: I said, "I'm here to photograph things. I'm here to look at pigeons. I'm here just to learn." You know, and that would begin a
dialogue where they would say to me, "Hey, I want to show you something. Oh, you said pigeons, you should see -- go over there on Lafayette, there's
a guy on number 90 or 95, you'll see it, you know." And then, so, I would follow the instructions and I walk over to where they told me. I look up.
If I see pigeons, I would just yell up to the roof, "Hey." And sometimes I would just open the door and walk up.
MARTIN: So, what was your intention? Did you really have one? I mean, it just sounds in a way like kind of you're on some sort of a vague quest that
you didn't really know what the it was that --
ARNADE: Some of it was driven by just simply the photography. But, again, it was very much what it became was that the people became the important
thing and what I was mentally going through at the time, transitioning, I can say it, you know, I can kind of look back and think about it now was,
the way I had spent my entire life learning and then making judgments based on that learning was from data. But I didn't really know the people
impacted by those decisions.
And so, I was going through a process of talking to people and then learning from them and just hearing, you know. It was a different way of
MARTIN: Tell me about maybe one or two of the people you met at Hunts Point.
ARNADE: You know, there's two people I think about. One of them is, her name is Milly (ph). She has passed away. And so, eventually, my project
in Hunts Point became spending time with the homeless and addicted. And Milly was a -- she was a sex worker and she was a lifetime heroin addict.
And I must have met her 12:30 at night. She was working the streets. And then I asked her her story and she told me her story. It was a pretty
Heroin -- introduced to drugs early 13, 14 after abuse. In and out of jail. In and out of rehab. Living on the streets for most of her 30
years. And then she told me about how she just been -- she had just relapsed again. She had been clean for a year and a half. She had been
clean for a year and a half because she had gotten pregnant and wanted -- you know, wanted for her child to stay clean. She relapsed. Did a speed
ball, a combination of heroin and crack. The baby was born early. The baby was taken away from her. And here she was back on the streets.
Milly ended up -- whenever I saw her, she had a bandanna that was all wrapped around her arm. And the reason she had a bandanna wrapped around
her arm because she had an abscess that had taken over the length of her forearm where she would shoot heroin into and it had started -- and it went
septic eventually. And she ended up in the hospital and died from --
The rumor on the street when she disappeared was that she had been killed. I actually put the leg work in and I actually went through all the
hospitals and I found her, that she had died, unclaimed body. And if you die in New York City unclaimed you go to Hearts Island. I don't know if
MARTIN: It's where people go when they have no one to bury them.
ARNADE: And you're buried in a large trench. And I located her body there. And I went through the process of getting it exhumed so she could
have a proper burial. But during that process of actually finding out, I found her relatives, I found a lot of her story. Everything she told me
that initial night, a complete stranger at 12:30 in the morning was true. And it always struck to me as just one of those things where, you know,
beyond being an awful tragic tale it's also this person had no reason to tell me the truth, but did.
MARTIN: Eventually, this -- I don't know what you would call it, this hobby of yours, this passion of yours, really changed your life. I mean,
you quit your job and you, what, set out across the country, right, not just focusing on Hunts Point but kind of going across the country.
ARNADE: First of all, there was a selfish part, which was I personally enjoyed this job more than I did banking. I was sick of banking. I didn't
like that way of thinking. Again, it was a very limited way of thinking, it's very quantitative, it's very cold, very solace. And this was a way of
thinking and a way of learning that wasn't.
It also became something of a political process by which I wanted other people in some senses to see what I was seeing or to know what I was
knowing because I thought that the way they were -- the way our politics was aligned was not helpful. First of all, it was creating these problems.
And second of all, it was ignoring them, and it was ignoring the depths of the problems. And when they came up with solutions, I felt the solutions
were wrong. So it became, in some senses, a political process. You know, I did have an axe to grind in that sense.
MARTIN: So where're some of the other places you went and how did you pick them?
ARNADE: I generally picked them by looking statistically at what was the worst place, the places that needed to be fixed.
MARTIN: By what standard? Like, homicides, poverty?
ARNADE: Poverty rates, homicide rates, overdoses, economic decline. You know, here was maybe four or five maps I used.
MARTIN: So you went to places like Milwaukee.
MARTIN: And --
ARNADE: And when I went to Milwaukee, I went into the African-American neighborhood. I went to Selma, Alabama. I went to El Paso, the first ward,
MARTIN: Lewiston, Maine. So really all different -- lots of different -- like predominantly white, predominantly black, predominantly Latino in some
ARNADE: I tried to find towns that were uniquely diverse, partially to see how - what I was seeing played out differently amongst different racial
groups. So when I went to Lumberton - it didn't make it in the book. It's one of my favorite towns. I say, it's (ph) Lumberton, North Carolina, which
is one-third African-American, one-third Native-American and one-third white, and you know, it's also in the poorest county in North Carolina,
Robeson County. But you know - and I went there for a while.
MARTIN: So you've got a chapter - it's actually chapter one -if you want to understand the country, visit McDonald's.
MARTIN: Why do you say that?
ARNADE: I think a lot of - there's this real misconception about McDonald's amongst my class, of just being this place that pays its employees awfully
and has unhealthy food, but it's the lived reality for a lot of people. McDonald's is often the only option people have. And for the people who
have the - the most marginal people, people who most marginalized, people who living on the streets or addicts, McDonald's is extraordinarily
It becomes a community center in many ways. It's a place they can come in, sit for three or four hours, and get away - get out of the heat or the
cold, recharge their phone, clean up in the bathroom, maybe even shoot up in the bathroom and also socialize, and rejoin society in a way that
they're just not stared at.
I always say that, you know, if these people were to go on to a college campus, the police would be called, but McDonald's welcomes them. And it's
more than just that. In some towns, like in Gary, Indiana, which I talk about in my book, it's effectively the community center. It's the one
place where people come in and play checkers. They play dominos. They play chess. They, you know, just hang out, read books.
MARTIN: Yes, you can have a dollar, you could have a meal, one of the throughlines for a lot of people that you photographed and spent time with.
Is it - there was a lot of addiction. What was the chicken and what was the egg in your view?
ARNADE: I firmly believe addiction is about - is about - not about supply. It's not about what drugs are available. It's about demand, and it's about
demand for - to ease a deep pain in people. And that pain generally comes from stigmatized or rejected, and there are very classic forms of rejection
that lead to addiction. One of them is racism.
I think you can go into any traditional African-American community that's been like I went to, in Selma and North - and in Milwaukee, or Buffalo,
where people have been confined to secondary everything by the color of their skin, and that's a wholesale of rejection by society that, I think,
is very painful, very humiliating and often leads to drugs. I think one of the forms of rejection that you find now in white communities, also, is
To be uneducated these days is a stigma. We value education so much that I - actually, one of the things that I heard so many times, when I was in
crack houses or when I was in drug dens, as people said, you know, I'd say, like you know, "Where - where'd you go to college?" And I knew the answer
was I didn't go to college, but I would ask out of politeness and respect, because I would ask everybody that question.
And they would say, "Oh, well, I dropped out after 9th grade." And I'm like, "Why?" He goes, "Oh, people call me dumb," you know? And I could
tell that that hurt, you know, and I can tell you that a lot of people who told me that weren't dumb. You know, there was this one gentleman - he's
in the book - who got addicted to heroin, and a manual laborer, a white guy, in West Virginia.
I think he said, "I don't know my ABCs." And he didn't want to talk to me initially, because he was worried that he didn't know how to speak well.
He actually was one of the most eloquent people I've heard. He has - he has a real way with language, and I kept telling him that, and he didn't
believe it, because he'd, all his life, been told he was dumb, been told, you know, you can't read and write.
And I think more and more nowadays, because we sort by education, because we reward education so much, economically, I think that when who don't
necessarily do well in college, it's just not who they are.
MARTIN: And school. Or just school, period. Formalized education, right?
ARNADE: Right. They're not - that's just not their personality. That's not their skill set. That's not the way their mind is wired. They don't -
or they don't have the family support to be that person, because they have - you know, to be an educated elite, you have to have a supported family,
often. You have to be willing to leave that family to move, and some people just don't want to do that.
MARTIN: I don't want to gloss past something that you talk about in the book, which is that after a certain point - at a certain point, you
developed an addiction yourself.
ARNADE: I ended up quitting during the process.
MARTIN: Yes, and I wanted to ask you about that. What do you think that was all about? I mean do you think -
ARNADE: Selfishness. I - you know, I can try to - I can try to dress it up in all sorts of ways, and say I was seeing pain, but I like to drink.
And I was around a lot of drugs, and I started drinking heavily, partially to - partially to deal, in some levels, with the chaos I was seeing,
partially to fit in, to be honest. And I had to stop, and so, I stopped.
MARTIN: What made you stop?
ARNADE: A recognition that I was - it just was entirely selfish and I was harming people around me.
MARTIN: Do any of your family members say, "Chris, you know what?"
ARNADE: Yes, yes. And part of the reason I don't write about it in the book, my actual - first of all, I don't really want to make the book about
me. I think it should be about the people I met. And so, I try to put them first. But second of all, my story's been told many, many times by
people. A wealthy person finds a drug addiction and gets clean.
MARTIN: He just stopped. That's interesting.
ARNADE: So I don't like to say I was an addiction because I was able to stop that way, you know? I mean I was sober, completely sober, for three
years. I have (inaudible) because I can go back to doing that in my mind.
MARTIN: But I guess, is one reason you don't want to talk about that is it - because it plays into a narrative you don't like, which is that people
could fix their stuff if they wanted to. Is that part of it?
ARNADE: Wealthy people can. I mean I didn't want to go down that lane because I can - I can give you a 30-minute spiel of why I think, yes,
wealthy people can fix them, but they have a massive support network. So I had a supportive family; I had money; I had stability.
Often, when you're an addict and you're leaving on the street - when I first got to Hunts Point, I remembered I was naive enough, when someone
said that's my sister, I'm like, "Oh, what a coincidence. Your sister's here." It's not their - it's their street sister - they've been ejected by
family, often because of awful abuse. They ran away early, and they built a street family, and the street family's actually as important as a
biological family. It replaces a biological family.
That's great. It's this wonderful system. It's actually a legal system. Like if someone - when Millie (ph), her sister got her possessions, what
possessions she had. The negative of that is when you go to rehab - when I go to rehab, I can go, but I - had I gone (ph) - or a wealthy person goes
to rehab, they come back to their family. If you're living on the streets and you come back to your family, all your family's addicts.
MARTIN: Tell us about another person you met, somebody who really stuck with you.
[13:40:00] ARNADE: A young woman, probably 19 or 20, who was in a McDonald's in East L.A. And when I would go to a town, I would spend every
night in the same McDonald's, writing my notes. And so, this younger woman was there every night with her computer, doing her homework, and her Game
Boy and her phone, all three of them changed. And eventually she asked some questions about me, because she saw me there typing.
And I said, "I'm from New York City." And she was like, "Oh, I would love to go to New York City." And I said, "Well, you know, you can. There's a
lot of great schools there." And she says, "Well, I can't," you know, "I'm going to go to the local East L.A. community college," I think it was. And
she says, "Because I'm my mother's translator."
You know, a Mexican-American; her mother, like most first-generation, didn't speak English, and so, she, as the oldest daughter, was tasked with
being the translator. And I think, you know, that's an example of a case where I think we undervalue that decision. I personally think that she
made the right decision. She should stay in East L.A., you know. And -- and -- and go to a local community college because she's -- because she
needs her mother. Her mother needs her.
I've met people who had the opposite who they needed their parents. And you know I think we -- again, that -- that pathway to success we -- we
still highly tell (ph) often requires people -- you know it limits who can do it and requires people to leave their family.
MARTIN: Give me your final thought. I mean where do you want to leave us.
ARNADE: End of the day the -- I think it's the old narrative, before you judge somebody walk a mile in their shoes. You know if you someone who's
homeless or you see someone who's addicted or you see somebody who votes the way you don't vote; before simply saying what a jerk or what a lazy
person or you know or they must have mental problems, spend 15 minutes talking to them.
And you'll probably find out there's a lot more context to their story than you realized and the decision might be a little bit less crazy than you
MARTIN: Chris Arnade, thank you so much for talking with us.
ARNADE: Thank you for having me.
(END VIDEO TAPE)
AMANPOUR: And our much like, Chris Arnade is asking us to take a deeper look at divisions within society. Our next guest wants us to rethink how
we deal with divisions between genders, in particularly toxic masculinity.
In his new serious but also humorous book, "Future Man: How to Evolve and Thrive in the Age of Trump, Mansplaining, and #MeToo," the award winning
author and film maker Tim Samuels looks at modern day manhood and all its complexities from fatherhood to mental health, pornography and everything
in between and he's joining me now. Welcome to the program Tim Samuels.
TIM SAMUELS, AUTHOR AND FILMMAKER: Thank you.
AMANPOUR: I mean it's quite a big title -- very long title.
SAMUELS: Yes, yes. Well, there's a lot going on with men these days.
AMANPOUR: There is a lot going on with men these days. One of the things you -- I mean you have quite a lot of fairly shocking sort of statements
including men have become a time bomb of toxic testosterone. Well, what do you mean by that and when does the clock hit zero?
SAMUELS: Well I think we're seeing the bomb starting to explode already on both sides of the Atlantic and across Europe; men who are on their economic
downers are more vulnerable than people think.
I think people look at men as a whole and see that men who have dominance at the top and say guys I've got it fine. But for the guys who haven't got
it fine that's a very damaging place to be.
And not having a job or the insecurity or the loss status drives an inner anger, which -- and frustration whether it's in sort of depression or drug
abuse or kind of get offensive outwards to people whether it's minorities or women.
And men who -- who are desperate and things aren't going well for are more willing to take radical options that makes them fertile to radical
AMANPOUR: So let's talk a little bit about the radical options first before we go to the politics because you have some shocking statistics that
we talk about but it's -- it's -- it's interesting to see them close up.
Men are three and half times more likely to commit suicide than women. 60 percent of the homeless are men. The prison population is 93 percent mail.
You think it's time for male reckoning. Well, what does that look like?
SAMUELS: I think it starts very early on with how we treat boys. The education system just doesn't seem to be serving boys well. Boys are
naturally (inaudible) and they need to run around and learn in a different way.
But they're told to sit on their hands and behave politely and that doesn't seem to work and we wonder that boys are six times more likely to have ADD
by the time they leave school and then less likely to go to university now than girls.
So I think it -- I think it starts with boys and then it -- it follows all the way through to skilling men up for the economy, which is coming our
way. We're facing an atomization (ph), which is going to sweep away millions of jobs. That's not going to be pretty.
And I think politicians as well just need to sometimes show manifest of love and understanding.
AMANPOUR: OK. So now we get into the -- a little bit of a side -- a side track, which is difficult because you say, you know, in the age of Trump,
mansplaining and Me Too. So here you are coming out with these tales of woe at a time when many women are saying hang on a second, it's our time.
Men have been at the top or at least their stories have been -- and their stories have been told for centuries. What do you mean it's time for male
reckoning? It's our time now. How do you answer that?
[13:45:00] SAMUELS: It's not an either or. And if you want -- I mean that male reckoning has been overdue and Me Too has -- has reigned in and
exposed some awful excesses and abuses of power. But it -- as I said it's not an either or.
If you've got a man in your life and he's not in good place that's -- that's going to be bad for the family, it's bad for the relationship. So
if you can make that man more robust, it's going to have an impact on families, on societies as a whole.
This isn't -- it's not a case of either it's good for women or it's good for men. I think we're at a stage where it can be good for both.
AMANPOUR: I don't often read the blurbs to my guest but there are two that I show go to the heart of this. Firstly from the actor David Duchovny,
obviously of the X-Files and Californication, he writes about your book I laughed a lot and cried some but only on the inside, which is where a man
And that's also a big part of what you're talking about that -- that boys have not been brought up to express their thoughts, their feelings, their
struggles, their vulnerabilities. Is that right.
SAMUELS: Yes. And we -- and we have a stiff upper lip or this a kind of machismo in the states and that doesn't serve our mental health well.
We're at the stage -- well given how badly things are going for men's mental health, we need to be less macho and be more honest.
And sometimes there is a guy; hey I'm having a problem here. I need a bit of help; I need to talk to talk to someone. It doesn't make me any less of
a man, I think it makes me more of a man to say I've got vulnerabilities and I want to do something about it.
So I think the owness is on men as well to be more emotionally smart and seek help or seek guidance. Because these are really stressful times at
the moment and it's no wonder some of us are struggling.
AMANPOUR: And actually you know we've seen, you know, magazine covers increasingly and not just male magazines but the Financial Times, for
instance, had a big article on -- on mental -- mental health and struggles at work.
And men were predominated there. We see it in the military, we see it in all sorts of areas where it's traditionally male dominated but they feel
very unable to express their feelings. I just want to play a little bit of what Prince William has said on this issue amongst many other things. But
he's also very committed to this issue. So let's just listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRINCE WILLIAM, DUKE OF CAMBRIDGE: I think guys in general find it very difficult to open up. They find it very difficult to talk about their
feelings. Guys see feelings as weaknesses sometimes and they see that you've always got to be tough; always got to be strong, always got to be
doing you know getting it right and all that stuff. There's a lot -- there's a lot of male pressure. We've got to relax a little bit and be
able to talk about our emotions because we're not robots.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AMANPOUR: So he's here with footballers and coaches and this is part of a BBC documentary on mental health. You also are being quite open about you
know your struggles. Tell me about how your experience plays in to this investigative journalism.
SAMUELS: Yes. I mean I think when you're saying that men need to be candid you've got to talk the talk as well. And you know I've been quite
honest about the times that I've had wobbles.
And for my sanity and serotonin tends to be affected by how work's going, which I think is true for a lot of men. When things are going great and
you're busy, you feel pretty robust. But when things aren't and you're not -- the hunt and gathering isn't going so well that leaves you to feel --
that leaves you feeling quite vulnerable.
And you saw that in the last recession there was a spike of 10,000 additional male suicides directly attributed to that. So I think it's --
it's important for a man to admit that sometimes we have a hard time, which makes it that much easier for the next guy that comes along and when
someone like William or Harry, who's also been really articulate about this, does it, it just makes it that much easier for the next guy.
Even someone like Tony Soprano as a fictional character getting some therapy makes it that much easier for you to say I'm going to go and see a
AMANPOUR: That is really interesting. And -- and you're absolutely right. It was the first sort of macho male figure that we saw practically getting
regular weekly therapy sessions on that unbelievable series.
How does this -- we sort of touched a little bit on -- but how does this effect and show up in politics today. I mean whether it's in the U.S.,
Britain, Europe, wherever it might be?
SAMUELS: I think to understand this you have to look at the power of loss. It is a sensation which has twice the pleasure -- twice the intensity of
pleasure. It's what keeps you awake at night. And loss is something, which if you're a man on -- on your downers; you -- you've lost your job,
your status, maybe your relationship, your sense of purpose, what -- what you're getting for in the morning and that makes you desperate.
And like a gambler who's desperate to regain their losses that the roulette wheel, you're sometimes willing to try something radical. You bet on
something you might not entirely agree with, you'd turn the table over. So I think that makes you riper for the radical politician who comes along and
says trust me, I'm going to change it.
AMANPOUR: You know we've been actually exploring this quite a lot this week and -- and last week. And -- and it is that kind of disconnection and
isolation that has drawn quite a few boys, men in the past to all sorts of gangs and -- and militant organizations. So I mean it is really
interesting how that's playing out.
But you know you said and u didn't say it in this book but you have said we're still walking around in the bodies designed for hunter-gathering.
We're cavemen in suits but living lives totally ill-suited for that design. And like a bad OS, we're constantly crashing. There are smart new ways to
feel like a man, which respect the bodies we're in and the ways we've lived for millennia.
What are the smart ways?
SAMUELS: So if we are tribal animals, at the moment, we live in this kind of terribly isolated lives, which - and we're not in unions anyone. We
don't have an extended family (ph). So what can you do to spend time with your time?
Whether it's routinely spending time with your male friends or relatives or getting some of that aggression out in smart ways, through a martial art or
feeling a sense of belonging by being in a sports crowd, or something bigger than that, or being productive if your job is kind of - it keeps you
in an office all day, and it's sedentary? So it's talking those instincts that we're wired for - as I said, you know, we are - I mean I -
particularly, I'm just a kind of caveman in a suit - and applying them to modern life in smart ways.
AMANPOUR: You talk about sex, monogamy, pornography. What - you have a take on monogamy; you describe why it could be tough for a man to be a
monogamist, but you also say you're not justifying cheating. So explain. I mean for instance, one of the things here, "So that's what they're
thinking. It's a fascinating peep behind the curtains." That's Helen Felding, author of "Bridget Jones," and who always wants to know the way
men are thinking. So what is this with monogamy?
SAMUELS: So (inaudible) biological. If you look at the male bodily design, based on the relative size of our testes, compared to those of
other apes, we fall somewhere between the highly sex chimp and the deeply monogamous gibbon. So based on kind of biological size, we're sort of
wired to be mildly polygamous, which is kind of alpha male and several women.
So I do say it would be the worst excuse in the world, to go back and say, "I'm sorry, darling, but look at the relative size of my testes compared to
other apes -
AMANPOUR: And between a gibbon and a chimp.
SAMUELS: Exactly. But it's at least useful to know that we might have this wiring. So if you are keen on monogamy, which is broadly a good
thing, then keep yourself out of temptation, or, you know, maybe when you're on that stag night, don't have the extra drink because there's some
wiring that's going on.
AMANPOUR: Yes, also bring your own responsibility, your sense of responsibility.
SAMUELS: Yes, in the same way that we're wired to gorge on sugar when we see it, and if you are trying to lose weight then don't go down the
chocolate aisle in the supermarket.
AMANPOUR: But it's even sometimes a little bit more insidious than that. I mean you have this story about Ghana, and you've gone - you've got this
story about how these guys and women are actually looking at porn movies that have come from L.A. Somehow, they're appeared on their TV, and it has
a pretty negative repercussion.
SAMUELS: No - I mean it's extraordinary to see globalization at work, to be in a rural village in Northern Ghana, where there's no electricity, and
once a week, they were wheeling in a generator and turning, in essence, a mud hut into a porn cinema. And then the guys would see it, become aroused
and go out and assault the women.
And marriages of 30 years were breaking up because guys were not getting what they'd seen on these films that had somehow made their way from L.A.
to the middle of nowhere. So I mean - and this is for a BBC doc on the porn industry, which when you look up close, it's pretty awful, and seeing
the impacts around the world is kind of shocking. So porn's a big deal for men.
AMANPOUR: Yes, it is. It really is. And everybody with young kids knows that. But you say, for instance, the U.N. should put men on their agenda,
in the same way obviously that women are very prominent on the U.N. agenda.
SAMUELS: Yes, I mean when you have something, you know, in the case of male mental health, which is - you know, it's the biggest - men killing
themselves is the biggest killer of men under middle age, when you have mass incarceration, when you have rates in America where longevity has
peaked and we're not living for as long as before, because of middle-aged men and their health problems, I think we're going to - this is an
emergency, you know?
There is an emergency with men, but we don't do anything about it, because the men at the top are doing well and distracts us. And as I said, it's
not men or women. Let's look after men; make men better, and that's going to be good for relationships, good for family and good for society.
AMANPOUR: I think, yes, you're right. Everybody says feminism is about men and women. Me Too is about trying to get, you know, equality and all
of this between the genders. So it's a very, very good timing for this book, "Future Man." Tim Samuels, thank you very much indeed.
SAMUELS: Thank you.
[13:55:00] AMANPOUR: And that is it for now. Remember, you can always listen to our podcast, see us online at amanpour.com, and you can follow me
on Instagram and Twitter. Thanks for watching and goodbye from London.