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Protests Continue Across U.S. Over Death Of George Floyd At Hands Of Police; Minneapolis City Council Votes To Disband Police Department; Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo Discusses History Of Racism In Minneapolis Police Department; Analyst Examines History Of Systemic Racism In U.S. Police Departments; African- American Comedian Tiffany Haddish Discusses Fear She Feels When Stopped By Police; President Trump Gives Speech To Graduates At West Point; Houston School District Taking Steps To Reopen Schools After COVID-19 Pandemic. Aired 2-3p ET
Aired June 13, 2020 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN HOST: Hello, again, everyone. Thank you so much for joining me this Saturday. I'm Fredricka Whitfield.
We begin with the nation in an uproar, demanding an end to racial inequality. Today, more protests are happening across the country over the death of George Floyd at the hands of now former Minneapolis police officers. This is the 19th straight day of protests, and now there is a new case being scrutinized.
An investigation now under way after a black man was shot by Atlanta police while at a drive-through restaurant. The George Bureau of Investigations says the man resisted arrest and struggled for an officer's taser before the shooting. But before that, police made a call that he was sleeping at the drive-through. So what happened in between all of those reported events?
With racial tensions on the rise, President Trump is making a rare reversal. The president's campaign will not hold its upcoming rally in Tulsa on Juneteenth. June 19th is the date slaves in Texas finally learned of their freedom, nearly two-and-a-half years after the Emancipation Proclamation. The rally will now take place one week from today, instead, but still in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Meanwhile, the president honored more than 1,000 graduates at West Point today. The graduates sat in socially distanced formation and wore masks over coronavirus concerns.
The Minneapolis City Council has taken another step toward establishing an entirely new system of law enforcement in the wake of George Floyd's death. All 12 members voting unanimously to spend the next year working with community leaders and other experts to come up with new ideas for what policing should look like. CNN's Lucy Kafanov joins me from Minneapolis. Lucy, what are you hearing? LUCY KAFANOV, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fred, the day after the city
council voted to move forward, basically the first step in what's going to be a very long process in moving towards disbanding the police, you can see that there are still people on the streets here in Minneapolis. We're at another Black Lives Matter rally, another rally to protest the way in which George Floyd was killed. People just starting to trickle in here. We're expecting the protests here to get larger.
But as for the city council vote, the members saying, look, in Minneapolis there have been decades of efforts to reform the police. Those have not worked. It's time to try a new way. Take a listen to what one city councilwoman said about the reason why they're making this push.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ALONDRA CANO, MINNEAPOLIS CITY COUNCIL MEMBER: We acknowledge that the current system is not reformable, that we would like to end the current policing system as we know it, and that we would like to create a completely new, transformative model of public safety that centers a lot of things -- healing, restorative justice, relationships, the respect and dignity that so many of our community members want and deserve.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KAFANOV: Now, whether they'll actually be able to abolish the police remains to be seen. There are other efforts on the way, both at the state level as well as the local level, to reform the police department. Take a listen to what the mayor had to say earlier this week.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAYOR JACOB FREY, (D) MINNEAPOLIS: If we're talking about a massive cultural shift in the way our police department does business, I'm on board. If we're talking about major structural reform that pushes back on the horrid nature of how our police departments have treated black and brown communities, I am fully on board. But if we're talking about abolishing the entire police department, I was honest. That's not where I am.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KAFANOV: A lot of officials talking about the so-called major structural reform, but whether that's going to keep people off the streets remains to be seen. A lot of people here want change that they can actually see, Fred.
WHITFIELD: Lucy Kafanov, thank you so much, in Minneapolis.
As city leaders vowed to transform the Minneapolis Police Department, the city's top cop says his department must change and do better. CNN's Sara Sidner just sat down doing a one-on-one interview with the police chief, and we have to warn you that some of the images in this story are disturbing.
SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Long before the world saw the excruciating death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers, a black lieutenant who had come up through the ranks of the department became a whistleblower against it. That man is now the chief of police, Medaria Arradondo.
In the office of attorney John Klassen, he was the first of five black officers to come forward and expose the department's racial discrimination against black officers and black citizens.
JOHN KLASSEN, ATTORNEY: They were subjected to racial slurs by superiors and coworkers who could do so wantonly and without any recrimination by the administration. That was one piece of it.
The second piece was these officers had reached an inflection point. They no longer consented to the department administrating unconstitutional justice to the citizens, the minority citizens of Minneapolis.
SIDNER: Arradondo and the officers, dubbed the Mill City Five, sued the department in 2007. They settled in 2009 for $800,000 and promises of reform. Ten years after the lawsuit, Arradondo became chief.
You sued your own department more than a decade ago for racial discrimination against officers and against citizens. Why shouldn't it be dismantled? There are still problems, clearly.
CHIEF MEDARIA ARRADONDO, MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT: This department in its 152 years has certainly had its issues, and it has been broken. And I brought attention to that a decade ago. But I didn't abandon it. And the reason why I didn't abandon it is because I believe in it. So I do believe that we can be that police department that our communities look towards and trust and see as legitimate, and that we do have their best interests at heart.
SIDNER: Minneapolis is Arradondo's home town.
ARRADONDO: I'm a product of nine siblings born and raised in Minneapolis. This is my town. Service has always been a part of our family.
SIDNER: So no one in the city has surprised when he showed up after long nights of raging protests and prayed near the spot where George Floyd was killed. We happened to be there when the chief arrived and linked him live with Floyd's brother, the first exchange between the family and the chief.
ARRADONDO: I clearly did not wish to meet them under those circumstances, but I want to thank you for allowing me the opportunity to first have a conversation with them and offer my condolences, so I thank you for that, and I'm glad that I was able to do that prior to the memorial service. But I looked them in the eye, and I said I'm sorry. And I will see to it that their brother's death is not in vain.
SIDNER: Did they respond to you? How did they receive your apology?
ARRADONDO: The grace and the love that they showed, they hugged me, and we hugged. And so that will also lead my reform work, my transformational culture change work. The Floyd family will lead me forward in the days ahead and the weeks ahead for this important work.
SIDNER: Even after what some of his officers did, many community activists and leaders say they still trust their chief.
TRAHEM POLLARD, CEO, WEPUSHFORPEACE.COM: The love I have for chief is an understatement. He is a true community person.
SIDNER: Is it lip service or is it real service?
POLLARD: I think the proof is in the pudding. The officers was terminated and the mayor stood with him in that decision.
JARMAR NELSON, COMMUNITY ACTIVIST: If you think that you've seen civil unrest, if you go in, if the feds or anybody come in there trying to mess with the chief, it's going to be hell to pay.
SIDNER: That's the first time I've ever heard folks in the black community say something like that about a chief of police. It is often the opposite.
NELSON: He's for us, by us. He's the FUBU chief. He's for us, by us.
SIDNER: The chief has promised reform, well aware the community trust in his department is all but gone.
Do you think that right now that legitimacy is gone?
ARRADONDO: Without a doubt we have absolutely tapped into our currency of trust with our communities, and we have to build that reserve back up, absolutely. And I will be the first one out there. Our communities can expect to see me out there in those spaces, in those very uncomfortable spaces, to make sure that we are moving forward, to make sure that I'm hearing that pain and that anguish and what is needed in terms of really having the true transformational change that we need.
SIDNER: Sara Sidner, CNN, Minneapolis.
WHITFIELD: Let's bring in Rashawn Ray, a fellow with the Brookings Institution and an associate professor of sociology at the University of Maryland. He also researches racial and social inequality with a focus on interactions between police officers and the communities they serve. Professor, good to see you.
RASHAWN RAY, PHD, DAVID M. RUBENSTEIN FELLOW, THE BROOKINGS INSTITUTION: Thank you for having me.
WHITFIELD: So how do you undo or fix a city's department that may have a history of problems with the communities they serve?
RAY: I think part -- I think the first thing is people have to recognize what's happening in Minneapolis is normative. So as you reported earlier, every 30 hours a complaint came in about a police officer. Every 40 hours across the United States a black person is killed by police. And when we start talking about police reform, what we have to realize is that these bad apples come from rotten trees. Even the police chief had to sue his own department.
So I think there are a few things we need to do. First, we need to restructure civilian payouts for police misconduct. Eventually George Floyd's family is going to get a large civil payout. The money that they paid in taxes is going to be the same money paid back to them for the dehumanization and murder of their loved one. That needs to change. We need to shift it to police department insurances.
Second, we need good apple protections. Officers have been asking for the fact that they need protection when they blow the whistle, when these are the good apples.
WHITFIELD: You're talking about that blue wall of silence, the blue wall of silence. Once you penetrate that, if you're an officer, you, using colloquial, rat out your fellow officer, you're saying then -- yes, then there's payback, and that de-incentivizes calling out the bad apples?
RAY: Without a doubt. The blue wall of silence extends from police departments to prosecutors' offices to courtrooms. And oftentimes it is the bad apples like Chauvin who are protected instead of the good apples like the chief who has raised concerns. Of course, there have been other examples across the country where officers have raised concerns about misconduct.
They're the ones who end up being vilified. They're the ones who end up being suspended. They're the one who don't get promoted. They're the ones who dissent to a far district away from their home, and then they're the ones that are put on evening shift and night shift when they have children. So we need those good apple protections.
I also think that we must move beyond just thinking about chokeholds, body worn cameras, and policing bias trainings. I do a lot of that. It matters. But it doesn't matter without some of the structural changes that come along with that.
WHITFIELD: So let me ask you about that. Structural change, does that mean complete dismantling of, or does it mean something else?
RAY: So I don't necessarily think that it has to be a complete dismantling of. But at the same time, when people have aimed to make change and nothing has happened, oftentimes you do need to literally chop off the roots. And that's what we're seeing in Minneapolis. That's what happened in Camden.
I tend to think that restructuring civilian payouts for police misconduct will matter a lot. I think a couple of other things will matter a lot as well that haven't been talked about that my research shows. First, we need to focus on officers as human beings. Eighty percent of police officers report having chronic stress. About 20 percent of them report having suicidal thoughts. They report addiction, either drugs or alcoholism. These are people who are not mentally well.
And the things that we've seen in Buffalo, for example, reveal that. Who pushes an old man down who is old enough to be your grandfather when you could have sidestepped him, and then who goes to the courthouse to cheer on the people who did that? Oftentimes they're dealing with mental health, and so what we need to ensure that officers get mental health assistance. This could look like a normative approach where every 90 days officers go see a psychologist or a psychiatrist.
I think, second, we need housing subsidies, which we've seen in a lot of places. But housing subsidies will help officers to deal with the fact that they are underpaid and overstretched.
WHITFIELD: You covered a lot of ground there. But then let's talk about the variation of instances that might underscore the community's concerns about this relationship between police and the community. Just today we're learning about a man being killed by a police officer at a drive-through at a Wendy's restaurant in Atlanta last night.
Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams just tweeted this, saying, quote, "The killing of Rayshard Brooks in Atlanta last night demands we severely restrict the use of deadly force. Yes, investigations must be called for, but so, too, should accountability. Sleeping in a drive-thru must not end in death."
What do you make of that? There's a lot in between what we hear, the report of a man sleeping at a Wendy's, and then, police confirming that this individual was shot, police saying that there was some struggle of a taser. But there's a lot in between. So how do you get at that, the real story of what happened?
RAY: So I think the bottom line is this. We know that structural racism matters. We know that interpersonal racism matters. The research that we've conducted at the Lab for Applied Social Science Research at the University of Maryland shows that there is implicit bias among the officers, regardless of the race of officers. And if we're really going to deal with that, officers must be held accountable.
And we have to really understand and recognize, that blackness becomes weaponized. That's what we've seen with George Floyd all the way down to Atlanta to what we've seen in Louisiana and even in Central Park.
WHITFIELD: Meaning you're suspected of being up to no good, and let's just start with what someone sees, your skin color. The blackness of your skin.
RAY: Without a doubt. When I say blackness becomes weaponized, there's one specific stat that highlights this. Black people are 3.5 times more likely than whites to be killed by police when they're not attacking or have a weapon. Who says that? Police officers themselves. This is about the fact that in our society we oftentimes have two forms of justice -- one for oftentimes white America, and another for black America. And that's the reason why people are in the streets, and that is the fundamental change that needs to happen in law enforcement.
WHITFIELD: Professor Rashawn Ray, we'll leave it there for now. We'll certainly have you back. The University of Maryland, thank you so much.
RAY: Thank you.
WHITFIELD: Happening right now, demonstrators are taking to the streets for the third straight week. You're looking live at a rally in Washington, D.C., as protesters call for an end to police brutality and a complete reform of the justice system.
And emotions are raw for black celebrities joining in the protests. Comedian Tiffany Haddish sheds tears as she says she gets stopped by police solely because of the color of her skin.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIFFANY HADDISH, COMEDIAN: I can't even drive in Beverly Hills without getting pulled over, and I've got a Tesla. I shouldn't be afraid when I see those lights come on behind me, right. I shouldn't feel like, is this going to be the last day that I'm on earth.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WHITFIELD: Today, dozens of cities from coast to coast are expected to see protests over the death of George Floyd. Take a look at these live pictures from Washington, D.C., where protesters are marching through downtown and they're expected to walk to the White House. It is the third week of largescale protests across the country, and that includes in Los Angeles, where we find CNN's Suzanne Malveaux. So Suzanne, what are you seeing there?
SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, good afternoon, Fred. We expect that there's going to be tens of thousands of protesters tomorrow throughout the city and smaller pockets today in the hundreds, more in the hundreds. Very diverse groups that are going to be gathering here in Los Angeles, in Beverly Hills, as well as West Hollywood. We're talking about one group that's called Buddhists for Black Lives, another group of social workers, another group of law school students, and an event called more skating, less hating.
And you'll see that I'm standing in front of a makeshift memorial in the city. I'm in West Hollywood right now, and this is very typical of many of the different areas that we've come across. I want to point out here the Laugh Factory, because this is where we were yesterday, and it was really kind of an extraordinary event that we saw. It was a rally called Stand Up for Social Justice. There were a number of comedians and actors and artists.
I had a chance to catch up with comedian activist Tiffany Haddish. And Fred, it was really an extraordinary five minutes with her, raw emotion, ranging from joking, humor, preaching, to really tears and being despondent. I want you to hear what she says it is like to live here, to be a part of this community, to be black and part of this community, and to try to use her craft in a way that she can help people at this time.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIFFANY HADDISH, COMEDIAN: Sometimes I go out, I need at least two white friends to be with me so I know we'll be safe all night. That might be the worst white friends to have with you, but I know that they're with me so I'll be safe. It is --
MALVEAUX: It's emotional?
HADDISH: It's scary. You shouldn't be scared to be in America. It's supposed to be the land of the free, the home of the brave. You're supposed to be able to have the pursuit of happiness.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: And Fred, she really struggled, because during this interview she was trying to be funny, but at the same time you could tell that she was just completely overwhelmed by what was happening. She said it affected her very personally, that she knows people, she knows people, she says, who have been at the hands of police who have been brutalized by the police.
And I asked her, because there are so many comedians who are trying to use humor, their craft, to really be real. She said this is something that they deal with all the time to try to get through to people. Is it any different this go-around? And she believes, just looking at the people around her, the hugs that she gave, the reception that she received yesterday, that it is, in fact, different this time. And here's how she responded to the question.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TIFFANY HADDISH, COMEDIAN: Oh, definitely something is happening. Definitely there is a transition. People are waking up. Yes, there's something happening here. People can see now, there's more information. People's hearts are opening up. The systemic racism and everything that's going on, that's been going on for hundreds of years, it's embedded in people's hearts, because I feel like a lot of the media and the old Jim Crow, like there's so much stuff. But now people are looking and they can see, and I do believe change will come.
(END VIDEO CLIP) MALVEAUX: And Fred, you can hear in the background, so appropriate, that song that came on right on cue, almost, talking about change being afoot. So Tiffany Haddish among many people here in West Hollywood who feel like potentially there is a breakthrough, there's a difference here. We're going to be following many of the protests throughout the day, Fred, and we'll bring that to you as well. Fred?
WHITFIELD: Suzanne, I can't wait to hear more of that interview. I just got a little sample of it earlier, too, where she talks about as a resident there, even she has been stopped. She is part of now Hollywood royalty, even she got stopped in her vehicle there, and --
MALVEAUX: She drives a Tesla and says that she's been harassed many, many times.
WHITFIELD: Yes, and the fear that kind of goes through her body when seeing those lights.
And earlier I spoke with Olympian Edwin Moses, and he had a very similar story, despite his successes, despite his notoriety, his impact, he, too, was stopped in Los Angeles one time, and he didn't know what the outcome would be, all for a very minor traffic offense that he was being stopped for, underscoring it doesn't matter how high you go, what your successes are, what your platform or your position, if you are black, you unfortunately are going to be subjected to these kind of indignities and questions, which is just powerful, and it hurts your heart. Thank you so much, Suzanne Malveaux there in Los Angeles.
I join Laura Coates with four of the nation's top mayors, D.C.'s Mayor Muriel Bowser, Atlanta's Keisha Lance Bottoms, Chicago's Lori Lightfoot, and San Francisco's London Breed, "Mayors who Matter, A CNN Town Hall on Race and COVID-19," live tomorrow tonight, 9:00 p.m.
WHITFIELD: Amid racial tensions and coronavirus fears, President Trump delivered the commencement address to West Point graduates today that was unlike others before. More than 1,000 graduates gathered at the U.S. Military Academy for the ceremony, and due to concerns over the spread of COVID-19, these second lieutenants wore masks and they socially distanced.
CNN's Kristen Holmes is near Bedminster, New Jersey, where the president plans to spend the night at one of his golf properties. So Kristen, how did the president address these things?
KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, he didn't really address them in any meaningful way. Just to note, he did touch on some of these flash points, but he did not use this opportunity to really dive into the crises that we're seeing across the country right now. For example, you mentioned coronavirus. When he was talking about the virus, he thanked the military for their help with dealing with the virus. He called it an invisible enemy that came from China. But it really stopped there.
And then on the racial tensions, the president really did not address this in any way, particularly given what we have seen across the country. We've seen other leaders using these moments to really speak out about racial injustice, to talk about these racial tensions, to talk about these protests. And the president steered clear of all of that. Take a listen to what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I also want to thank the men and women of our National Guard who respond with precision to so many recent challenges, from hurricanes and natural disasters, to ensuring peace, safety, and the constitutional rule of law on our streets.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: So clearly there he was thanking them for what they did. Just a reminder, the National Guard were deployed all over the country as a response to some of the unrest to help keep this in line.
But I do also want to note two other points about this. One is the National Guard is actually currently under a lot of scrutiny for their response in Washington, D.C. In fact, there is a review going on by the Department of Defense at this time for those actions.
The other part to mention here is all of this is coming at a time in which we have seen current and former top military officials really breaking with President Trump on his response to the killing of George Floyd's death. So all of this could have been an opportunity for him to speak about that, but yet he did sidestep those issues.
WHITFIELD: Kristen Holmes in Bedminster -- I'm sorry, in New Jersey. Thank you so much.
It's the question on most parents' minds this summer -- what will school look like in the fall? Can students social distance? Will after-school activities be canceled? Still to come, a look inside one Texas school district where COVID cases are climbing.
WHITFIELD: More cities and states are deciding what school will look like in the fall. Rhode Island and Vermont plan to have full in-person classes while New York City's mayor says schools should prepare for a mix of in-person and online classes. And CNN got a firsthand look at changes in store for Houston where COVID hospitalizations are at their highest to date. CNN's Bianna Golodyrga reports.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So we're going to check my temperature first.
BIANNA GOLODRYGA, CNN SENIOR GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: This is how students at Harvard Elementary School in Houston and likely other schools across the country will be greeted when doors eventually reopen, mandatory temperature checks.
Next, they follow a carefully marked path to the PPE station, where each student is given their own facemask that must be worn throughout the day. Interim Houston superintendent Grenita Lathan, who oversees the largest school district in Texas with about 210,000 students, has quite literally weathered many past storms.
GRENITA LATHAN, HISD INTERIM SUPERINTENDENT: I want to remind people, we're still recovering from 2017 when hurricane Harvey hit, and now we're being hit by COVID-19.
GOLODRYGA: But safely reopening schools in the middle of a pandemic is no doubt her biggest challenge yet.
LATHAN: This virus has stumped me, I will tell you the truth.
GOLODRYGA: She gave CNN a firsthand look at just how daunting that challenge is by walking through the city's oldest stool to show how educators, together with health officials, are preparing guidelines for what students and teachers can expect to see when they return.
LATHAN: So this is one of our classrooms.
GOLODRYGA: Classrooms will be significantly smaller, with two or even one student per table.
LATHAN: As we think about having just about 11 students in a classroom at a time.
GOLODRYGA: Cafeteria's will be less crowded, with some meals served in classrooms instead. Those familiar tables meant to seat a large group will now be used by just a few students at a time.
LATHAN: Initially I believe it's going to be a prepackaged lunch.
GOLODRYGA: Hallway traffic will be regulated, and instead of students filing out together when that bells rings, it will be teachers transitioning from class to class. And then there's the question about recess.
LATHAN: Recess will look differently, and the way it will like is we will have a reduced number of students out on the playground. We'll need to make sure that we're cleaning all of our playground equipment throughout the day.
GOLODRYGA: It's a blueprint being modelled in other large school districts, including for the 2 million students in Los Angeles.
The L.A. County Office of Education released its guidelines that include staggered days, one-way hallways, and solo play. It's not just schools that are being refitted. Approximately 480,000 school buses transport more than 25 million students to and from school each day across the country. This is how social distancing will look for many of those passengers.
LATHAN: As you can see, we've labeled our seats to where we would space students out.
GOLODRYGA: All of this change comes with a hefty price tag.
Reconfiguring schools, reconfiguring school buses, all of this costs a lot of money. How does this play out in the end?
MICHAEL CASSERLY, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, COUNCIL OF THE GREAT CITY SCHOOLS: A little bit of federal money is starting to come down to take care of at least some of the initial costs. But on the horizon is costs that are much, much larger.
GOLODRYGA: Most experts envision the school year beginning with a hybrid of both online and in-person classes. The priority, they say, is opening their doors for the most vulnerable.
CASSERLY: We're most worried about students who are economically disadvantaged, students who are English language learners, students with disabilities, students who don't have Internet at home.
GOLODRYGA: We're seeing this backdrop of that playground, and I'm sure children will be seeing that and saying I want to go back to school, I want to see my friends. What is your message to those kids and their families?
LATHAN: To be patient. Allow us an opportunity to finalize our plan to ensure that students can be on the playground, they can be in the classroom, in our cafeteria, on our buses, but just be patient with us.
GOLODRYGA: For CNN, Bianna Golodyrga, New York.
WHITFIELD: Even as some states contemplate how to get kids back in school, other states are slowing down the reopening of the economy because of a troubling rise in new cases.
I want to bring in now Dr. Darria Long. She's an emergency room physician and a clinical assistant professor at the University of Tennessee. Good to see you, Doctor. So how concerned are you and should all of us be about the rise in cases?
DR. DARRIA LONG, EMERGENCY ROOM PHYSICIAN: Yes, Frederick, hi, good to see you. I'm watching this closely because I am concerned about it. I would say we have not yet exceeded the capacity of our health systems yet.
But Fredricka, that means that now is a really pivotal moment, because it means that if we can start to be smart and strategic about how we're managing our risk, that is the best chance we have of keeping this under control and minimizing infection while we can maximize how much we can get back into society.
WHITFIELD: And then there are also concerns of kind of a slow so- called second wave later on in the year, possible spike following three weeks of protests, the winter months alongside maybe flus, et cetera. What are some of the ways you think people should manage their anxieties and all of that and manage the risks?
LONG: Fredricka, this is exactly the question I've been getting. I have been getting it from schools and companies, from my patients and family. I've been getting it from people on social, on Instagram as well. And I realized myself and a co-author of mine, Dr. David Katz, we cowrote a piece together on this, realized we need to give people a framework to be able to make their own decisions now and going forward.
And it's based on two things. One is knowing that your individual risk level, are you high risk with high blood pressure and diabetes, or on the very low risk end of the spectrum? And then once you know that, understand this new concept that we discussed called exposure dose level. That's really important.
WHITFIELD: So tell me about this exposure dose level. What does that mean?
LONG: So exposure dose level, up until this point we were in lockdown. We said you're supposed to have zero exposure to the virus. Now we're saying as people are starting to open up the economy, people are going to be exposed to some amount, and it's no longer a zero, but what we're saying is you have to keep that dose low and be smart about it.
Think about, Fredricka, if you've ever tried to say I don't want to gain weight. Well, that doesn't mean you have no calories. It means you don't want to exceed a certain amount. Same way with exposure dose. You don't want to exceed the amount to get sick, and if you do, you still want to keep it low because it may decrease your chances of being severely ill. So everybody really needs to start paying attention to their exposure dose level.
And there are four factors -- density of people, distance from each other, duration, and degree of activity. It's the four Ds. Degree of activity -- are you sitting quietly or are you shouting or exercising together? Those four things are like a sliding scale to determine your dose level of any activity.
WHITFIELD: So then obviously exposure dose level might be pretty high if you choose to go to demonstrations, political rallies, et cetera. What kind of advice do you have for people who are engaging in large gatherings like that?
LONG: Yes. So for one, I tell people in general anything that's really a high dose exposure, so, yes, protests with a lot of people, political rallies, concerts, large sporting events, for the most part we've got to be careful and avoid those if possible. And if you do go to them, the people who are going should be only the lowest risk level in the spectrum, and they should be wearing masks, and after they go to them they cannot have contact with anybody who is in the higher risk level of the spectrum for two weeks. They need to quarantine themselves.
WHITFIELD: Lots of restrictions still in place, and more restrictions, because things are changing. All right, Dr. Darria long, thank you so much.
LONG: Thanks, Fredricka. Of course.
WHITFIELD: COVID-19 has created worldwide chaos since the disease emerged late last year, and while its exact origins are uncertain, scientists believe that the virus came from bats. But bats are not the bad guys here. This Sunday, Anderson cooper explores the world of bats, their importance to our ecology and economy, and how these winged creatures can carry thousands of viruses without getting sick themselves.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: In the last 20 years, some of the deadliest virus outbreaks have come from bats -- SARS, Marburg, Ebola. So what is it about these creatures and the way they spread pathogens that can be so dangerous?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The fact that bats are carrying viruses is not in and of itself extraordinary. Every animal has its normal suite of viruses and bacteria that it normally carries. People do as well. We carry viruses, we carry bacteria, the majority of which are benign or beneficial, some of which cause disease.
It's the fact that bats do tend to carry a higher proportion of viruses that have the ability to infect people. The question is really, why do we see some of these incredibly bad viruses coming out of bats?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WHITFIELD: Wow, fascinating creatures. So how do viruses jump from bats to humans? And can we stop the next pandemic? Learn that and much more on CNN's Special Report "Bats, The Mystery Behind COVID-19" tomorrow night, 10:00 eastern.
Confederate symbols are now in the crosshairs across the nation. Could these statues and symbols be the new turning point for protests over police brutality and racism?
WHITFIELD: Live look right now, Washington, D.C., where protesters in a rather lively festival like composure there, dancing in the streets. They are demonstrating not far from the White House, just outside of Lafayette Park. And this is the first weekend the park has been open since it closed after protests outside the White House earlier last week.
And that's when federal police in riot gear fired gas canisters, teargas canisters, and using rubber bullets to clear peaceful protesters out of the way so that the president could go across the street for a photo op at a nearby church.
So this nationwide movement against police brutality and racism is reopening a long debate over removing Confederate symbols. Could this be a turning point for that? CNN's Abby Phillip.
ABBY PHILLIP, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: A national reckoning on race could now mean the end for the last remaining symbols of America's dark history of slavery. In cities across the south, statues venerating military leaders of the Confederacy are crashing down. After the killing of George Floyd, protests have swept the nation and prompted fresh soul-searching.
MARC MORIAL, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL URBAN LEAGUE: I believe it is a sea change, and it's a long overdue movement against hate and racism in this country.
PHILLIP: It's the very issue that drew a group of white protesters, including white supremacists and militia members, to Charlottesville, Virginia, nearly three years ago. But today a massive shift.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's time to heal, ladies and gentlemen. Virginia is no longer the capital of the Confederacy.
PHILLIP: Virginia's governor seeking to remove an enormous landmark that commemorates the Confederate Army Commander Robert E. Lee.
REVEREND ROBERT W. LEE, DESCENDANT OF ROBERT E. LEE: He was a man of his time to fought to continue the enslavement of black people, and in so doing, set our nation on a course towards destruction.
PHILLIP: The Marine Corp banning the public display of the Confederate battle flag, and even NASCAR following suit, saying fans will no longer be allowed to fly that flag in the stands.
BUBBA WALLACE, NASCAR DRIVER: No one should feel uncomfortable when they come to a NASCAR race. So it starts with Confederate flags. Get them out of here. We have no place for them.
PHILLIP: The changes are also sweeping through pop culture. On Thursday, the popular country group Lady Antebellum announcing the change of their name to Lady A, telling their fans "We can make no excuse for our lateness to this realization that the name referred to the pre Civil War period that included savory." HBO Max saying it has temporarily removed the film "Gone with the Wind" and will return it to the platform with materials putting it into context.
And now a push from military leaders to strip the names of rebel generals from military bases.
GEN. JOSEPH VOTEL (RET), FORMER CENTCOM COMMANDER UNDER OBAMA AND TRUMP: I don't have an attachment to the names of the basis.
PHILLIP: Former Army General David Petraeus writing "It is time to remove the names of traitors like Benning and Bragg from our country's most important military installations."
But there is also staunch resistance, beginning with President Trump, who tweeted that the bases represent a "history of winning, victory, and freedom," and he would not even consider renaming them. Trump warning his party not to fall for a bipartisan amendment introduced in the Senate to remove the Confederate names. But it may be too late, as some Republican lawmakers say the time for change has come.
SEN. MIKE ROUNDS, (R) SOUTH DAKOTA: We don't want to forget what's happened in the past, but at the same time, that doesn't mean that we should continue with those bases, with the names of individuals who fought against our country.
PHILLIP: Abby Phillip, CNN, Washington.
WHITFIELD: Thank you so much for being with me today. I'm Fredricka Whitfield. CNN NEWSROOM continues with Ana Cabrera right after this.