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A Gunman Opened Fire At A Shopping Center In El Paso Texas; In Dayton, Ohio, A Gunman Killed Nine People Early This Morning. Aired 11-12a ET
Aired August 4, 2019 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DON LEMON, CNN HOST: This is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Don Lemon. Shock and grief in two cities tonight as the nation grapples yet again with deadly mass shootings that have killed 29 people. A gunman opened fire at a shopping center in El Paso Texas, killing 20 people, injuring two dozen more.
Authorities are investigating a racist anti-immigrant manifesto that they believe was posted by the shooter just before the massacre. It's filled with white supremacist language and racist hatred aimed at immigrants and Latinos. And the writer blames immigrants and first generation Americans for taking away jobs.
Thirteen hours later, in Dayton, Ohio in a popular nightlife district, a gunman wearing a mask and body armor opened fire, killing nine people including his own sister.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh [bleep].
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dude, what the [bleep]? What the [bleep]?
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LEMON: Police are still looking for a motive. But an initial search of his family's home, they found writings that show he had an interest in killing people. We have live coverage from both scenes of the deadly shootings.
Tonight, Federal authorities are calling the deadly mass shooting in El Paso a case of domestic terrorism. CNN's Ed Lavandera is there. Ed, good evening to you. You have been on the scene all day in El Paso. What more are you learning about the victims?
ED LAVANDERA, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, tonight has been a night of vigils across the city and we've also started hearing the first names of the victims in this shooting. One of the ones we learned about a little while ago is 86-year-old
Angie Englisbee. She is the mother of two people who were here at the Walmart scene last night, Don, desperately looking for her.
They had last spoken with her just minutes before the shooting erupted. They went nearly 30 hours without knowing exactly what had happened to her.
Her family tells me tonight that she is one of the victims and that her body was inside the Walmart. And then at a vigil, a powerful moment we witnessed here tonight. There was a story of Danny Latin, and his family. Remember, you probably heard about this youth soccer team that was outside of the Walmart holding a fundraiser. There were three parents and about five children when the shooting erupted.
One of those parents called her husband who was a trucker and away on work, and he called two friends and just simply pleaded "Please, go for my family." That was Danny Latin calling his friends.
Those two friends raced into the scene and found those children hiding underneath a car in the parking lot. Those three parents had shielded the children from the bullets, all three of them are in the hospital recovering. But Danny Latin spoke at this vigil tonight and thanked his friends for jumping into action to find his family.
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DANNY LATIN, WIFE INJURED IN EL PASO MASS SHOOTING: I want to thank everybody for coming out here showing us your support. This is my daughter. She was the one from the team that was there fundraising. My wife is still in the hospital recovering. From the very bottom of our hearts. Thank you very much.
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LAVANDERA: Don, those two friends who showed up at this parking lot told me that they were repeatedly told by law enforcement to get away from the scene. They said they ignored all of those warnings until they could find those children.
And as I mentioned, they found them hiding underneath a car and they were safe.
LEMON: Ed Lavandera in El Paso. Ed, thank you for that. Now to Dayton, Ohio, where a gunman killed nine people early this morning. CNN's Drew Griffin is there for us. Drew, still no motive for the shooter in Dayton, but you have interviewed students who went to high school with him. What more are you learning?
DREW GRIFFIN, CNN SENIOR INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's interesting. You know, we know from sources that they did find those writings in his home that apparently had some interest or showed interest in killing people and we know that's not the first time, Don.
In his high school days, when he was a sophomore, the shooter was expelled or taken out of school by police for a time because what we're learning is he had some sort of a kill list or a hit list.
According to four students who were told they were on that list by school officials, the list was divided in between men or boys who were on the kill list and girls who were on a rape list.
One of the students actually told us he was on a school bus with the shooter, sophomore year when police came aboard that bus and detained or arrested him, took him off. He didn't see him for about a year, and then he came back to school a year later, seemed to be somewhat changed, but never really found out the full story of what happened.
[23:05:11] GRIFFIN: This all we're learning about as the police continue to say they do not have a motive yet. The writings, although they did express -- the current writings -- did express interest in killing people, there was no politics behind it or a bias towards a certain racial group behind it.
So the police, at least outwardly are telling us they still remain puzzled as to why this shooting took place.
LEMON: And Drew, you know, having said that, I keep getting stuck on how many people died and were injured in such a short amount of time -- in such a short period of time. It was a massacre.
Walk our viewers through the timeline for us, if you will.
GRIFFIN: Yes. And you know, this is a crowded area. And apparently all these people that were shot were waiting outside a bar to get in. So, they were in a bunched groups sort of on a sidewalk, but the police walked us through this, and it's amazing how quick this all took place.
So the shooter, and his sister and a companion, drove together to what appeared to be a night on the town, I guess, to this nightclub district. But sometime during the night, the sister and her companion separated from the brother, and then at 1:05 in the morning is when shots rang out.
It took police 20 seconds to engage the shooter, 20 seconds, and 10 more seconds. So, after 30 seconds, they killed the shooter. But just in that short amount of time, we have nine people dead, all of these people wounded. It just shows you the rapidity and the firepower that he had, along with this condensed group of people, how easy it was for him to kill that many people, even though he himself was killed within 30 seconds. It's amazing.
LEMON: Drew Griffin, in Dayton for us. Drew, thank you so much. The F.B.I. Director is ordering field offices around the country to do a new threat assessment in an effort to try to prevent more deadly mass attacks.
Christopher Wray has named a command group in Washington to oversee his order. Joining me now to discuss that is CNN's Shimon Prokupecz. Shimon, hello to you. What more are we learning about the Federal government's response to this spate of mass shootings. There's a new directive at the F.B.I. it sounds like. SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: There is, Don, but
I just want to point something out. The F.B.I. just putting out a statement just moments ago from the F.B.I. Director, and let me just go ahead and read this to you.
It says that, "The F.B.I. remains concerned that U.S. based domestic violent extremists could become inspired by these and previous high profile attacks, to engage in similar acts of violence." The F.B.I. goes on to say that, "They're asking for the public's help that if you see anything suspicious, to report it."
So what they're doing is they're saying that both these incidents, the one in Dayton, Ohio, and obviously the one in El Paso, there is now concern that there could be copycats, that someone could be inspired by these attacks, and they're urging the public that if you see something, as we always say, if you see something, say something.
The F.B.I. just putting out that statement, Don. They're also saying that they're working with local authorities there in Dayton, and El Paso, and they're providing all sorts of resources.
One of those being is that they're providing extra agents. Agents who have an understanding in dealing with domestic terrorism, hate crimes. They're using all of those resources to try and figure out exactly what happened in these incidents and see what it is that perhaps could be done to prevent something like this from happening again.
LEMON: Shimon Prokupecz. Shimon, thank you very much. Two communities grappling with the horrors of mass shootings. I want to bring in now Cesar Blanco, a member of the Texas State House, and David Stout, an El Paso County Commissioner.
Gentlemen, thank you for joining us. I know that it's a busy time for you and we appreciate you informing our viewers. State Representative Blanco, I'm going to start with you. I want to first extend my condolences to you and El Paso. This is a neighborhood that you grew up in. And you know, here you had some families shopping for things like school supplies, and this senseless violence occurs. It is unthinkable.
CESAR BLANCO (D-TX), TEXAS HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES: It is. It is. It's very sad. It hits home. You know, I just came back from the candlelight vigil across the street here at Ponder Park on the very same field where I played Little League Baseball.
And it's tragic that we're here in our hometown, dealing with racism, dealing with murder, and we're taking it very hard. But I will say, El Paso is a resilient city and at the candlelight vigil, a speaker had mentioned that we also have our own manifesto. It's the manifesto of compassion. It's the manifesto love. It's the manifesto of tolerance.
And I think that's reminiscent and symbolic like of what El Paso means and we are a very tight knit community.
[23:10:04] LEMON: Commissioner Stout, I want to bring you in now. You were at the hospital earlier. Talk to me about that.
DAVID STOUT, EL PASO COUNTY COMMISSIONER: Yes, just a -- you know, a very, very somber situation. But the good thing is, is that we have some of the best healthcare professionals in the state, and this is a level one trauma center, that was prepared to receive the folks. They are prepared.
And we also have a Children's Hospital. You know, there were two children, I think, they were the first two victims that the hospital actually received and they were able to transfer them directly to the Children's Hospital, and start taking care of them right away.
And so, you know, it was also uplifting to see folks coming to the hospital, bringing food, bringing water, or giving out hugs, doing things that this community is known to do.
LEMON: You see the good that comes out in people and, you know, often when we have these terrible tragedies. Commissioner Stout, when you hear about this, this alleged racist manifesto, it's filled with hatred towards immigrants, hatred towards Latinos, please tell me what goes through your mind.
STOUT: Yes, it's just utter sadness. There's a lot of emotions, a lot of emotions. A lot of sadness, disbelief, just being upset and really not understanding why this type of thing has to happen in this community.
You know, this guy came in, dressed in racism. He started shooting people at will, and he came here to kill Hispanic people from another city. And that is the worst, you know, this community was targeted because of who we are.
It was targeted because like it or not, the demographic here is what this country is going to be in not too long future. And, you know, it's very sad that that somebody would lash out in that forum and have come from so far to do so.
LEMON: Represented Blanco. You know, Mr. Commissioner Stout just mentioned this, but the fact that this white supremacist shooter traveled to your community of El Paso, to your border town. He is from Allen, Texas, which is far off on the other side of the state. What do you take from that?
BLANCO: Look, make no mistake, this should not be a reflection of the people of Allen, Texas. I am sure that they are great people, just as El Pasoi has great people. But it really demonstrates how much hatred one individual can carry.
And really, I think the politics of today can be as such as well. I think, in the past, we've had the politics of unity. Unfortunately, a scenario like this will hopefully bring us together to work together on a variety of things versus focusing on things that separate us.
A lot of things can be learned from bad experiences, and it is our hope, in fact, I know that our community here in El Paso will move forward from this and be resilient. This city, even though we've been attacked, because of our immigrants
and Latinos who live in this community will continue to be an open community that welcomes immigrants into our community.
So my messages to all immigrants who are out there, El Paso will remain safe, and it will be open and welcoming to you, as our country has always done throughout the history of time.
LEMON: I want to ask you, what do you want to hear Representative, from your state leaders, your governor, your senators, what do you need to hear from them?
BLANCO: You know, we need to hear words of compassion. But we also need to hear words of resolve and action. For too long, innocent people have been dying and killed at the hands of gunman not only in the State of Texas, but throughout the country.
We have an opportunity as elected leaders in this country and in this state, to be bold, to be courageous to do the right thing to make sure that these type of incidents don't happen again.
We have a choice. We have an opportunity to demonstrate for the history of the United States of what we were able to accomplish right now.
We can either take action or be in the history books as an elected body that never did anything to do -- things to keep people safe. That's the choice that we have. We are at a crossroads and I'm hopeful and confident that both Democrats and Republicans will move forward with solutions to help people.
[23:15:15] LEMON: I hope you're right. I think -- I hope you're right, I think most people in the country, everyone in the country feels the same way.
Commissioner Stout, the country is praying and thinking about El Paso. But beyond thoughts and prayers, what else does El Paso need?
STOUT: We do need the prayers. We do need the prayers. But we need we need more than that. We need folks like our Governor, or Senator John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, our Lieutenant Governor, and the Republican leadership in our state to take the lead of our delegation here in El Paso because folks like Cesar Blanco, and our State Senator, Jose Rodriguez have filed legislation in the past that has gotten nowhere, that aims to meet and to mitigate these types of problems.
And what they need to do is step up and take the lead and stop pandering to the N.R.A., stop pandering to organizations that are against gun control.
LEMON: Did you want to say something, Representative Blanco?
BLANCO: Now, I think we have -- the time for politics have passed. There are too many people that are grieving tonight, and have been grieving in the past. This is happening on our watch in this time in American history. We have the opportunity to be bold and do what's right. So you know,
tonight I make a call to action to all elected officials, regardless of party, to join us to help end the senseless violence to do what's right for this country, to heal the wounds of those family members that have lost loved ones and take action.
Do it through your faith, through your compassion. We can do this together, and I'm asking all politicians tonight to do so.
LEMON: Representative Blanco, Commissioner Stout. Thank you. Please take care.
BLANCO: Thank you.
STOUT: Thank you, Don.
LEMON: Twenty nine people dead, 13 hours -- in 13 hours, a lot of people are blaming mental illness. But is that really the only answer to why this keeps happening? I'm going to speak with a psychiatrist, next.
[23:21:24] LEMON: So President Trump saying today, hate has no place in our country in response to the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton.
He also ignored a question on white nationalism and said the attacks represent a mental illness problem. So let's discuss. Joining me now, Stephen Seager. He is a former staff psychiatrist at Napa State Hospital, and he is also the author of "Behind the Gates of Gomorrah: A year with the Criminally Insane." Dr. Seager, thank you so much. It's an important conversation.
As a psychiatrist, and someone who has studied these issues. Why are these mass shootings happening? Please help us here.
STEPHEN SEAGER, FORMER STAFF PSYCHIATRIST, NAPA STATE HOSPITAL: I think I can. I want to say first of all, to all those persons with serious mental illness and particularly their families, this is not due to mental illness. This is not your fault. These shootings have nothing to do with mental illness nor the treatment. The president is one hundred percent wrong.
What this has to do with, especially the shooting in El Paso is white nationalism and ingrained racism, which he trumpets and his administration does this, and these are -- I live in a Republican area, and I know what people talk about when he says "Oh, it's okay to shoot a minority Congresswoman" or implies that.
This shooting lies in his lap. It's him, Mitch McConnell and pence. These are the people who own this. They have sowed the seeds of hate and they are harvesting the harvest of murder. That's what this is all about. It has nothing to do with mental illness.
LEMON: Yes. I don't know if I've ever heard him say it's okay to shoot a minority Congresswoman, but if he did --
SEAGER: Well, he implied that with it with the five. And clearly, that's the message that I hear go to the gym, in the locker room. Whatever he actually said, the message was implied that send them back and then gun shops on Facebook show pictures, and these are women and with guns. This has to stop.
That's what -- people dance around this all the time. We can't tolerate assault rifles, and we can't tolerate an administration that openly says being a white supremacist, and being anti-gay and being anti-immigrant is okay because it is not.
LEMON: A manifesto believed to be written by the El Paso suspect was posted minutes before the attack. It was filled with white supremacist and racist rhetoric. How do people get drawn into these hateful beliefs?
SEAGER: Well, that's an interesting question. But I can tell you, it has nothing to do with mental illness. It may have something to do with a personality style. There's just certain people who are drawn to that. And I can't exactly explain it because I don't deal with those people. They're not mentally ill. And it has nothing to do with treating the mentally ill.
People are just susceptible to that. When you say these people are coming for your jobs, they're coming for you. They're coming for your country. That's what he said. He said, I'm defending what you told me to defend. And that's the message that's coming across, I can tell you for sure that's the message that is coming across, and that has to stop.
LEMON: Okay, then. So when these things happen, you know, whether it's, you know, a white supremacist or a kid who is angry because possibly they've been bullied or whatever. Why do people immediately -- many who are opposed to even sensible gun legislation, why do they immediately go to the mental illness? This is mental illness, we need to stop mentally ill people from getting weapons.
SEAGER: Because that's an easy target. In other words, who defends the mentally ill? They don't vote. They're not a constituency. They're just an easy target and it's just a knee jerk response.
The real response is, why don't you interrupt President Trump or Mitch McConnell when they say these awful things? That's really the question or why don't you collect all the assault rifles? Those are the really tough questions we have to ask.
And November you know, next year, we have a chance to address those issues. But right now, the call is you've got to get the assault rifles. Period.
You don't need an assault rifle to hunt deer. I'm from Utah, I know how to hunt deer, and you don't need an assault rifle. You've got to get rid of them. Once you get rid of that hatred and you get rid of the assault rifles, you will have no more mass shooting. [23:25:22] LEMON: I've got to ask you before we run out of time here,
you say there seems to be a national paranoia afflicting our country. What do you mean by that?
SEAGER: I mean by that, when you listen to the rhetoric, and I'm a big presence on social media, the other side really thinks they're being hunted down; that they're the victims of some conspiracy that they had. They really are paranoid that people are coming for them. That people with brown skin are after them.
And I live in California. That's of course, that's just not the case. You know, El Paso, I used to live in El Paso. That's just not the case. But somehow they bought into this. And I'll tell you, it's the leaders of the Republicans and the leaders in Washington who feed into this.
They don't come out and say, "Hey, stop this. Racism and white supremacy is bad." You never hear them say that. They suddenly encourage it, and that's the problem. People are buying into that. They become paranoid and they act.
LEMON: Dr. Seager, thank you for your time and your insight. Appreciate it.
SEAGER: You're so welcome.
LEMON: Tonight, the F.B.I. Director is ordering field offices across the country to do new threat assessments in order to avoid more mass attacks. What else needs to be done? We'll talk about that, next.
[23:30:04] LEMON: The F.B.I. Director ordering field offices around the country to be on the lookout for new mass shooting threats. Christopher Wray's announcement coming after deadly mass shootings in 13 hours, two deadly mass shootings in 13 hours. Federal authorities are treating the massacre in El Paso as a case of domestic terrorism. Joining me now to discuss is Brian Levin, Juliette Kayyem and Neill Franklin. Good evening to all of you.
Brian, I hope you heard our last guest Dr. Seager. President Trump has repeatedly urged -- has repeatedly used I should say, racially tense language. A favorite word that he likes to use when tweeting about immigration is "invasion."
His reelection campaign has also used the word "invasion" in ads and on Facebook. He also made racist comments again against people of color in Congress. Is the President's rhetoric leading to an uptick in domestic terrorism? Can you say that?
BRIAN LEVIN, DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR THE STUDY OF HATE AND EXTREMISM: No, but we can see there's a correlation at certain times when there's divisive speech, particularly around a highly charged event.
I'm kind of like the criminologist who calls the balls and strikes. I can't root for a team with the data. So, let me just give you the data, which I think is very compelling.
November 2016 was the worst month for hate crime, going back 14 years to the first anniversary of 9/11, for instance. The day after Election Day, and this is research that we did with the brilliant criminologist -- sociologist rather, Jim Nolan at West Virginia. We found that that was the worst day going back to June 2003.
So, we've also seen -- listen to this -- second worst month of this decade, Charlottesville, August 2017. When did we see some other spikes? October 2008 when Barack Obama was about to become the first African-American President and let me throw just two more things at you.
November 2015 when I was accused of manufacturing a hate crime epidemic, by someone who wrote a book called "Invasion," the F.B.I. actually found later that that was the worst month for anti-Muslim hate crime going all the way back to the 9/11 period. And what we found is -- listen to this -- San Bernardino terrorist attack, which affected our community, hate crimes against Muslims spiked 300 percent from the daily average for the first 11 months.
December 7the, there's a rollout of the Muslim ban proposal, hate crimes go up an extra 23 percent to be 400 percent higher. So what I can tell you is the data indicates that at certain times, statements by leaders correlate to fluctuations.
President Bush, six days after 9/11 talks about tolerance at the Islamic Center of D.C., hate crimes drop two thirds the next day, two thirds in next year against Muslims and Arabs.
LEMON: Interesting. Juliette, you're there. You're shaking your head, you often talk on this program about white nationalism, and I forget what you call it -- a type of terrorism --stochastic terrorism.
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Stochastic terrorism. Yes, that the phenomenon that we're seeing now, and this correlates to the same theory.
We tend to think of -- or it's wrong to think of radicalization as an on and off switch, right? You're either are or you aren't. And it's also wrong to think that, you know, to say that either Donald Trump is to blame or not to blame for any --
LEMON: You think it's a contributing factor, but you think it's too simplistic to say that. Go on.
KAYYEM: It's -- yes, it's absolutely a contributing factor. The data, as we just heard shows it. But it also is because what we're seeing now is the rise of white supremacy just noted by the F.B.I., that's becoming radicalized. It has a sense of what we call -- what they call the great replacement. This is the first generation of white men in -- or the last generation of white men in America that are a majority.
In other words, seven years ago, the census reported that non-white babies now outnumber white babies. This is just going to be a phenomenon of this country, most of us view that is a good thing.
And they are getting -- you know, they're either being flirted with or condoned, or both sides is -- and from the highest levels of government, including President Trump.
So, stochastic terrorism is right when a leader uses language that is more likely than not to radicalize. But you know, what someone specifically does, maybe that leader doesn't condone, but you certainly can't say he is not complicit at this stage.
And we're now what? Thirty six hours later and there hasn't been a strong condemnation of white supremacy yet? I mean, it's just it's -- he can't do it. I mean, it's just because I don't think he believes it.
I mean, I think that ultimately, he just puts it in the lone wolf box and doesn't view himself as culpable in what we're seeing right now.
[23:35:00] LEMON: Neill, I want you to weigh in and what you've heard so far.
NEILL FRANKLIN, FORMER MARYLAND STATE POLICE OFFICER: I don't disagree with anything, but I think there's one way that we can tell really quick whether or not it's just a correlation or not, and I appreciate those statistics.
How about we do an experiment? How about the President just knock it off? Right? And not just knock it off but speak about unity? How about making a true effort to unite people and be everyone's President, not just a select few white nationalists? And I'll go ahead and say it.
So how about his Republican counterparts, take a very strong stand, and say, "Okay, it's time for you to change your rhetoric. It's time for you to change your language. It's time for you to act presidential." And let's see what happens. If he truly does that, then we'll know for sure.
LEVIN: Can I just interject something real quick?
LEVIN: We just came out with a study. It's free. Someone on the internet today was shilling for it. I don't know what he means, it's free. It just came out, listen to this. In 30 of America's largest cities, hate crimes have risen in 2018 for the fifth consecutive year.
What else? Listen to this, Don. Well, we saw a decline in extremist homicides, particularly because of a cratering of violence in jihadist homicides. But over the last few years, we saw a reshuffling where white supremacist extremist homicides went from 13 in 2017, to up to 17 last year. And now we're already blown past that in August of this year.
White supremacy is a domestic terrorism, national security threat. And the people in our intelligence community understand that. LEMON: That gets us to the F.B.I. Director Christopher Wray.
Juliette, I'm coming to you, Christopher Wray, what he said about white supremacist violence just two weeks ago. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRISTOPHER WRAT, F.B.I. DIRECTOR: I will say that a majority of the domestic terrorism cases that we've investigated are motivated by some version of what you might call white supremacist violence.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Juliette, why is he going against his own officials and refusing to call it what it is?
KAYYEM: Well, I mean, because the numbers you just can't deny anymore. The problem and terrorism for terrorism and counterterrorism in Homeland Security is not Islam, is not a radicalized jihadists. It is not immigrants, as the President would have us believe. The numbers are clear that it's the white supremacist groups that are emboldened by online activity as I heard you just do the lead in, 8Chan and these channels that are now hopefully getting off of platforms that are just festering this.
And so it's something that can't be denied, and I think that it's just important to note that the statement tonight by the F.B.I. is absolutely necessary, because there are starting to be reports that the second shooter this weekend was flagging reports about the first mass shooter this weekend.
In other words, we're just worried that these guys are feeding off each other, plus, if they are feeling defensive --
LEVIN: Yes, and we wrote about that in our report.
LEMON: Yes, Niell, I've got to get you in because --
KAYYEM: Yes, they are feeling defensive.
LEMON: We're going to run out of time, but Neill, I have to say, listen, we often do -- yes, there's, you know, we live in a gun culture. And there are random crimes and gun violence on the streets of, you know, of the United States every single day.
But this particular issue of domestic terrorism is an issue that we need to address that people are afraid to address for some reason. What do we do about it as a former police officer? As you know, like I said, there's random crime, there's gun violence all over, which we need to deal with. But this is an issue that separate and apart from that, and we need to keep our eye on the ball with this one.
FRANKLIN: Well, one thing I think we need to do, the amount of energy that we put into Islamic terrorism over the past couple of decades is what we need to do here. We've lost sight of domestic terrorism with neo Nazi groups and, and white nationalist groups. There was a time we were keeping a very close watch on them. And we
were distracted after 9/11. We need to get back to that and more so, put the same amount of resources, if not more and energy into what we did after 9/11 with Islamic terrorism.
LEMON: Calls are coming from inside the house. Thank you. Thank you all. I appreciate it. We'll be right back.
LEVIN: Thank you, Don.
FRANKLIN: Thanks, Don.
[23:43:25] LEMON: The El Paso shooting is being investigated as an act of domestic terrorism leading many to point to the President's heated rhetoric on race and how it is impacting communities of color.
Let's discuss now with Derrick Johnson, President and CEO of the NAACP, also Albert Morales is a Senior Political Director of Latino Decisions.
Gentlemen, good evening. Thank you so much for joining us. Derrick, let's start with you. The President tweeted his thoughts and prayers. He told reporters, "Hate has no place in our country." Let's listen to that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Hate has no place in our country. And we're going to take care of it. I spoke with Attorney General Bill Barr at length. I spoke to Christopher Wray, Director of the F.B.I. I spoke to the Governors, both Governors and we're doing a lot of work. It's just not really not talked about very much. But we've done actually a lot. But perhaps more has to be done.
But this is also a mental illness problem. If you look at both of these cases, this is mental illness. These are really people that are very, very seriously mentally ill. So a lot of things are happening.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: So Derrick, we're in a country shaken by these massacres. Is this President living up, do you think, to his responsibilities to lead a nation right now?
DERRICK JOHNSON, PRESIDENT AND CEO, NAACP: You know, he is like the moral authority to lead on this question. Many countries have mental illness, but only in the United States do we have a President that allow our racial hatred and intolerance to germinate from the White House.
We've had three massacres in one week. We've yet to see any tangible policy initiative or action to address the problems of gun violence in this country. We've yet to see any tangible measures or policy initiative to address the questions of racial hatred.
[23:45:22] JOHNSON: I'm in Laredo, Texas, and I'm looking at all the signs of intolerance. I just visited a shelter of individuals who are being treated less than human. It is all at the footstep of this President and his actions. He has to measure up.
LEMON: He didn't mention -- Derrick, he didn't mention white supremacist at all. Is that a mistake?
JOHNSON: Well, I mean, it's the reality of where he rests. He don't want to offend his base and his base have been since he has taken office, the white supremacy community, he appealed to that base, he caters to that base. He refused to denounce those individuals.
And as a result of that, of the illness, albeit not mental, is an illness of individuals who think they are supreme in this country based on their whiteness, when in fact, we know the history of this country when we rested in white supremacy, many people are maligned, many people are targeted and far too many people are massacred, as we've seen over the last week.
LEMON: Albert, the manifesto that the El Paso shooter says he posted, he targets Latin Americans. The President's rhetoric has been, you know, really anti-immigrant. And he is using racial grievance as a centerpiece of his 2012 campaign. What effect is all of this having on minority communities? On black and brown communities?
ALBERT MORALES, SENIOR POLITICAL DIRECTOR, LATINO DECISIONS: Well, first, Don, thanks for having me on your show. Hearing the President talk about mental illness is pretty rich, talk about the pot calling the kettle whack. But to your question, unfortunately, this isn't anything that were surprised by.
Ever since he announced his campaign back in June of 2015, we've seen an uptick and concern amongst Latino communities, audiences and our focus groups are polling, folks have been concerned about this since then.
Just a couple of weeks ago, when the President uttered those famous words, "Send her back," we've just come out with a poll that indicated that 86 percent of Latinos felt that racism towards Latinos and immigrants were a problem.
Now, that's just amongst registered voters. I can only imagine what it's like for the 10 to 12 million or so who are living in the shadows, and don't have anywhere to turn, hearing those stories of those people who were afraid to check in on loved ones for fear of being perhaps apprehended by the authority. It was just gut wrenching and seeing my friend, Cesar Blanco tonight, who you interviewed a few minutes ago, was just -- it finally hit home and you know, pretty angry. Texas is my native state. I'm from Fort Worth, not far from where this little monster was born and raised.
And I want to hear more about his parents, his upbringing, who -- he learned this somewhere. He is in his 20s. He didn't just pick this up off the internet, and I want to learn more. LEMON: Derrick, you tweeted earlier you said, "Dayton Police Chief
says there is no evidence that racial bias motivated shooter. However, six of the nine people killed were black. Time for D.O.J. to intervene immediately." You know, the President has also attacked four Congresswomen of color, the City of Baltimore, Representative Elijah Cummings, they are people of color. Do you think people of color in this country are feeling less safe today?
JOHNSON: Well, we're definitely feeling less safe. We've seen ever since Charlottesville, how this administration have handled the reality of domestic terrorism and let's make no mistake about what's taking place, this is domestic terrorism. That same type of terrorism that African-Americans have seen throughout the Civil Rights Movement and past the Civil Rights Movement.
It is a scenario where the Federal government under this administration have not valued the lives of citizens of this country, African-Americans and Latinos and they have dehumanized individuals who are seeking asylum in this country.
It is not anything that we should stand idly by and say it is okay or excuse away by saying it is these few individuals because they have mental illness. If there is any mental illness, it is coming from the White House because this President refuse to see anyone whose images is different than his image.
LEMON: Listen, the F.B.I. just issued a statement saying that they are concerned about copycat shootings. The F.B.I. remains concerned -- this is their statement, "The F.B.I. remains concerned that U.S. based domestic violent extremists could become inspired by these and previous high profile attacks to engage in similar acts of violence." Is enough being done to protect communities of color?
JOHNSON: No, if they are now just getting concerned --
LEMON: Mr. Albert --
JOHNSON: I mean, we have a problem. We've seen this problem for a while now whether it was a result of what took place in South Carolina, what took place in Pittsburgh with the synagogue in Louisville, Kentucky.
LEMON: Mr. Johnson.
JOHNSON: On and on and on. If the F.B.I. is just not having a problem, we have a problem.
LEMON: I want Albert Morales to respond to that, please, before we run out of time, thank you.
MORALES: Yes, Don. Clearly enough is not being done for this to have happened just, you know, weeks after the President was in -- I think it was Florida where he -- someone in the audience uttered the word "Shoot her" and instead of having a John McCain moment, he instead sort of winked at them and said that only in the panhandle could he get away with that. [23:50:50] MORALES: Well, if you're a white supremacist, and you're
seeing the leader of the free world utter that endorsement, if you will. Well, of course, it's going to inspire more copycats to do so.
And I hope and pray that our leaders have the courage. I know it's hard for these Republicans, you know, they're scared to death of getting primaried. I work in the business of polling and research, and it's all about getting reelected.
MORALES: But there comes a point where you have to start putting the political repercussions aside and start thinking about the Biblical repercussions because they are more intense than any election night loss that they could ever fathom.
LEMON: Thank you, Mr. Morales. Thank you, Mr. Johnson. I appreciate it. We'll be right back.
[23:55:20] LEMON: At least 29 people dead -- 29 people. The two mass shootings in two cities in only 13 hours. We've spoken a lot tonight about what needs to happen to make significant changes in this country.
But right now we're going to take the time to honor these 29 people whose lives have been cut short, these 29 victims of senseless violence. In Dayton, Ohio, nine people were killed. Lois Oglesby, Saeed Saleh, Derrick Fudge, Logan Turner, Thomas McNichols, Beatrice Warren-Curtis, Monica Brickhouse, Nicholas Cumer, and finally Megan Betts, the shooter's sister.
And in El Paso, 20 people killed. Families are still trying to identify their loved ones, but we do know at least two victims' story. Jordan and Andre Anchondo, parents of three young children were shopping for school supplies when the gunman opened fire.
Jordan later died at hospital after using her body to protect her two- month-old son. Her husband is also confirmed dead. Their baby survived.
We're also learning the names of some of those victims. Angie Englisbee, 86 years old. Arturo Benavides was 60 years old. And Mexico Secretary of Foreign Affairs tonight is identifying the victims who were Mexican citizens. Sarah Esther Regalado, Adolfo Cerros Hernandez, Jorge Calvillo Garcia, Elsa Mendoza de la Mora, Gloria Irma Marquez, Maria Eugenia Lagarreta Rothe, and Ivan Filiberto Manzano.
Twenty-nine people in 13 hours.