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Heartfelt Celebration of Martin Luther King At Groundbreaking Ceremony for A New King Memorial on the National Mall

Aired November 13, 2006 - 09:30   ET


TONY HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: And good morning, everyone.
You are in the CNN NEWSROOM.

I'm Tony Harris.


For the next three hours, watch events happen live, this Monday, the 13th of November.

Here's what's on the rundown.

A way out of Iraq -- a distinguished group of Americans brings ideas to the White House this morning.

HARRIS: A civil rights icon honored -- breaking ground on a national memorial to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. live in THE NEWSROOM.

COLLINS: And identity theft -- who's swiping who?

A new survey shows the crime usually begins close to home.

Stick around for these stories, in THE NEWSROOM.

Civil rights in the United States, concerns about civil war in Iraq and a nuclear threat in Iran -- President Bush embarks on a busy day of events.

Our focus this hour, the war in Iraq.

The president meets today with the highly touted Iraq Study Group. The bipartisan panel has been scrutinizing U.S. Policies and considering new directions.

CNN White House correspondent, Kathleen Koch, is joining us now -- Kathleen, what is the very latest now on this, the meeting that the president will have with the Iraq Study Group?

KATHLEEN KOCH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Heidi, that meeting is ongoing right now. And the administration is being very careful to downplay the speculation that the Iraq Study Group's recommendations will basically be a cure all and provide President Bush and the United States with a way out of Iraq.

A senior administration official telling CNN: "If there was a rifle shot solution, we would have already pulled the trigger."

Now, the president, as I said, is meeting with the group right now. Later on in the day, members of the cabinet will be meeting with the Iraq Study Group. And, also, the group will meet via video conference tomorrow with British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

The White House very, very lukewarm on an idea that Blair is going to be proposing in a speech today, and that is to bring both Iran and Syria into the discussions on how to find a solution for the war in Iraq.

Still, though, White House Chief of Staff Josh Bolten does acknowledge that the Bush administration is looking for new ideas.

Now, to that end, the administration, though, is rejecting incoming Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin's call for a phased withdrawal of troops from Iraq. Levin, again, asking for those troops to be pulled out in four to six months. The White House insisting that that will only take place once Iraqi forces are able to handle security for their own country.


All right, well, we have already spoken about what a busy day it is for President Bush.

Another meeting happening for him today with the Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert.

What is on the agenda for that one?

KOCH: They'll be talking about continuing U.S. Policy toward Israel in the final two years of President Bush's presidency; also, Israel's very pressing concerns about the Iranian nuclear threat. Other things they'll be looking at, the situation in Lebanon, as well as the peace process with the Palestinians -- Heidi.

COLLINS: All right.

From the White House this morning, Kathleen Koch standing outside.

Kathleen, we know it was a busy day for you, as well.

Thanks so much.

KOCH: You bet.

HARRIS: A new week, another surge in violence in Iraq. A suicide bomber blew himself up on a bus in Baghdad today. The blast killed at least 10 people and wounded more than a dozen others.

That bombing just one of several attacks today across the Iraqi capital. As the violence spiked, the commander of U.S. Forces in the Middle East arrived in Baghdad to meet with the country's prime minister. CNN's Arwa Damon is in Baghdad -- Arwa, catch us up.

What's the latest?

ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Tony, General Abizaid met with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki. The information we have right now, not many specifics. But a press statement coming out from the prime minister's office saying that General Abizaid reaffirmed U.S. President Bush's commitment to Iraq, to the peace process; also emphasizing continuing cooperation to train up Iraqi security forces.

And, according to this press release, they were discussing the impact of Iraq's neighbors, mainly Syria and Iran.

It seems that there are a lot of changes. People are looking toward new policies in this country. Even the prime minister himself, it appears, looking for change, asking political parties for permission to shake up his cabinet.

This is all coming at time when violence is only increasing here and Iraqis are growing even more desperate.


DAMON (voice-over): We don't know her name. We don't know who she is grieving for. All we know is her sorrow, sorrow that many Iraqis have felt in the last three and-a-half-years. They are a people desperate for change.

So far their young government hasn't been able to come up with a solution to the violence. It seems one of its largest obstacles -- itself.

MAHMOUD OTHMAN, IRAQI PARLIAMENT MEMBER: If they stay like this, not agreeing with each other, not working as a team, differences in between, goes out to the media. So, as you have heard, they can't do it. They will be very weak.

DAMON: Now the prime minister, seen by many as weak and beholden to radical Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, is asking the parliament to allow him to make changes to the cabinet, saying this cabinet was not his choice.

NOURI AL-MALIKI, IRAQI PRIME MINISTER (THROUGH TRANSLATOR): And if it was my choice, I would have selected other than the current ministers, or at least some of them.

DAMON: Some say accepting a cabinet whose members don't all support him was his first mistake. And al-Maliki is running out of time.

OTHMAN: By the end of this year, if nothing changes and things deteriorate, as they are doing -- as they are deteriorating by the day, I think, unfortunately, we may reach a point where we couldn't do much. DAMON: The urgency highlighted by Sunday's attacks. In the capital alone, at least 50 Iraqis were killed in just five hours. The deadliest attack from twin suicide bombers, who detonated their explosives in a group of Iraqi police recruits, killing at least 35.


Recruits, explosive belt and mortars.


It targeted the civilians who are about to be recruited.

DAMON: The agony in his voice expresses what many Iraqis feel.


DAMON: However potential cabinet changes do play out, this will test al-Maliki's ability to hold this nation together. And if he is able to select his own ministers, his choices will highlight where his own loyalties lie -- Tony.

HARRIS: And, Arwa, the people of Iraq, to the extent that we've been able to talk to them, what's the reaction to the efforts to sort of shake up the government?

DAMON: Well, Tony, it really depends on who you're speaking with. Speaking with Iraqi civilians, they've heard a lot of words from their prime minister. They're going to wait and see how that actually translates into action.

If you speak with some Shia politicians, they are welcoming these changes, saying that this is Al-Maliki putting his own stamp on the government.

If you speak with some Sunni members of parliament, they're a little wary of this. They welcome change, but, at the same time, they also say that the problems in Iraq are so complex it's really not going to be fixed by changing a few of the ministers. And they're also wary that by changing some ministers, the prime minister could be giving Iraqis false hope -- Tony.

HARRIS: Arwa Damon for us in Baghdad.

Arwa, thank you.

COLLINS: It's a very big day in Washington.


COLLINS: The National Mall groundbreaking ceremonies there this morning for the long-awaited memorial to Martin Luther King, Jr.

You see a crowd assembling there. These live pictures coming into us.

CNN's Soledad O'Brien has a look now.


SOLEDAD O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Almost 40 years after his death, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is about to become the first African-American with a monument on the National Mall.

Ambassador Andrew Young, who worked closely with Dr. King in the '60s, is co-chairing the effort.

ANDREW YOUNG, CO-CHAIRMAN, KING MEMORIAL: When you go to Martin Luther King's memorial, it shouldn't be because he was black and he's the first black person to get a statue there. It should be because he made a significant contribution to the world.

O'BRIEN: Ten years ago, President Clinton signed legislation to launch the project. Major corporations like General Motors and Tommy Hilfiger are donating much of the $100 million needed to put King in the same park as Jefferson, Washington and Lincoln.

The memorial stands just a few hundred feet from the exact spot where Dr. King delivered his famous "I Have A Dream" speech to 250,000 marchers in 1963.

REP. JOHN LEWIS (D), GEORGIA: The Washington Mall is the front door to the capital of America. Martin Luther King, Jr. rolled in change in America, not just liberating a people, but liberating a nation.

O'BRIEN: Congressman John Lewis was just 19 years old when he met Dr. King. Five years later, they would march together here in Washington.


O'BRIEN: More than anything else, Dr. King led with the power of his words. And it's those words that will be the central focus of his memorial. Dr. King's quotes will be inscribed on each of the stone walls.

LEWIS: People will be inspired when they feel and touch the words and letters that will be etched in stone. And hopefully it will inspire a generation yet unborn.

O'BRIEN: Soledad O'Brien, CNN, Washington.


COLLINS: This really is going to be an amazing day. And the memorial is just beautiful, right?

HARRIS: Yes, yes.

COLLINS: This hour we're going to hear from several different people that you're going to want to stick around for. Bill Clinton is going to be talking in just a few minutes, about 10 minutes or so. And Oprah Winfrey and Maya Angelou. And we know that Maya Angelou will have something beautiful and very poignant to say.

HARRIS: Well, and we are so proud of our very own Soledad O'Brien, who is co-hosting, along with Tavis Smiley...


HARRIS: ... a lot of the events today. So we're so happy for her and we're so happy for this day. And in just a few minutes, we will be talking to the honorable Shirley Franklin, the mayor of the great city of Atlanta, about this day in Washington, D.C.

So that's all still to come.

COLLINS: Very good.

Meanwhile, moving on now, some fires to tell you about. Look at that. Firefighters working to reign in a wildfire. This is southern California. This one exactly about 75 miles east of L.A. Lake Elsinore.

Officials had called for residents to evacuate 100 homes there, but now those families are being told it's safe to return. So far, about 300 acres have burned. Air support for firefighters is expected to begin this morning, so that's good news.

Crews say the wildfire is about 30 percent contained, burning just 40 miles from last month's deadly arson fire near Palm Springs, the Esperanza Fire, where five firefighters were killed in that blaze.


And, Chad, as you've taught us, the perfect recipe for getting a handle on these wildfires is for the winds to subside.


They don't need rain.


MYERS: Firefighters can do it without the rain. I mean, you know, they just need the winds to not spread these sparks and fuel oxygen into the fire. And here are the numbers now. These are wind speeds in miles per hour -- two, three, three, they'll take that. They like that.

When it gets above 15 -- and, actually, the threshold is around 20 -- get above that, then you can throw sparks away from the fire and make the fire bigger and actually have it making it jumping lines. They hate that when that happens.

(WEATHER REPORT) COLLINS: Keeping it together -- Nancy Pelosi looks for common ground within her own party, with someone else in Washington looking over her shoulder.

We'll talk about that ahead in THE NEWSROOM.

HARRIS: And trading a gun-for a guitar.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... brought that damn .45.


HARRIS: A former Marine using music to heal the wounds of war.

You are in THE NEWSROOM.


HARRIS: What do you say we take you back to Washington, D.C. now for events marking the ceremonial groundbreaking for the Washington, D.C. Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial. That's a mouthful.

The monument to be built at Independence Avenue. Just to sort of give you logistics here, Independence Avenue and West Basin Drive -- is that Soledad?

Is she speaking now?


HARRIS: That is Soledad.

Can we listen to it a little bit?

All right, let's listen in on just a bit.

O'BRIEN: ... that all people deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. What a true honor to be part of today's celebration, even on this kind of messy November day. And I welcome you, as we begin the first step to making what was once just an idea a reality.

Good morning -- Tavis.


Somebody once said I'd rather have the living ideas of the dead than the dead ideas of the living. We hear King talking to us on this rainy morning, reminding us that love is still the only force capable of turning enemies into friends.

We hear King saying this morning that it's either non-violence or non-existence.

We hear King saying to us today that the ultimate measure of a people is not where they stand in times of comfort and convenience, but where they stand in times of controversy and challenge -- indeed, moments like these.

We hear King saying to all of America, to each of us as individuals, if you can't be a pine on the top of the hill, be a shrub in the valley, but be the best little shrub by the side of the hill...

HARRIS: You're listening to Tavis Smiley.

And just moments earlier, our very own Soledad O'Brien, hosting the events this morning.

The monument -- can we show folks this monument and where it's going to be?

The monument for King is going to be built -- I mentioned just a moment ago, at Independence Avenue and West Basin Drive at the tidal basin. That's adjacent to the FDR memorial.

The memorial will stand just a few hundred feet, actually, from the exact spot where Dr. King delivered his "I Have A Dream" to 250,000 marchers in 1963.

The events this morning to take us through the noon hour.

COLLINS: Yes, and the pictures that we have of the architecture, of how this is going to look, are just stunning.

There's a great big sort of a water display that is supposed to pulsate to the rhythm of Dr. King's speech.

HARRIS: That's right.

COLLINS: It's going to be really stunning.

Coming up this hour, we are going to hear from the following -- former President Bill Clinton, Oprah Winfrey and a poem by Maya Angelou.

So we'll have that for you as we continue on here.

HARRIS: What a day.

A new Congress, new challenges. Soon-to-be Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, will be walking a fine line, with a diverse party on one side and the president on the other.

CNN's Gary Nurenberg reports.


GARY NURENBERG, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): After the Tuesday night election elation, the presumptive speaker of the House put it simply to CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA), MINORITY LEADER: The campaign, as I said, is over. We're ready to lead, prepared to govern and look forward to working with them.

NURENBERG: Ready and willing, but able?

JOSEPHINE HEARN, "THE HILL" NEWSPAPER: I think she is going to face some tough tests.

NURENBERG: Josephine Hearn covers Congress for "The Hill" newspaper and knows Pelosi's Democratic majority is divided.

HEARN: She has the liberals, of which she is one, and the conservative blue dogs, which often are not on the same page.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you a Nancy Pelosi Democrat?

HEATH SHULER (D), NORTH CAROLINA CONGRESSMAN-ELECT: You know, I don't like to classify.

NURENBERG: Heath Shuler opposes abortion rights, pro-gun, won in a conservative North Carolina district by convincing voters...

SHULER: You know, he's not like some of the national Democrats. You know? He's one of us.

NURENBERG: Pelosi says she'll govern from the center.

HEARN: The Democrats are cognizant of the fact that they are now taking over the moderate territory and that they can't listen to the most liberal factions in the caucus.

RICHARD GEPHARDT (D), FORMER CONGRESSMAN: Our new speaker, Newt Gingrich.

NURENBERG: But old line liberals who have been out of power since the Republican revolution of 1994 are likely to push Pelosi left.

HEARN: It will be the central test in her speakership, is whether she can hold it together.

NURENBERG (on camera): Because there is someone else in town who has experience keeping moderate and conservative Democrats happy, someone who was governor of Texas when the legislature was run-by Democrats like that.

RICH GALEN, REPUBLICAN COLUMNIST: The president knows how to reach out to them, knows how to talk the language, knows how to give them the things that they need to be successful.

NURENBERG (voice over): So if congressional Democratic leaders can't walk that fine line balancing competing demands of liberals and conservatives in their party...

GALEN: They may find that the White House has effectively undermined their authority with a significant number of their caucuses and been able to work with them around what we suspect will be the liberal wing of each the House and the Senate. NURENBERG: A reminder the election was so last week.

GALEN: In Washington, politics never ends. Politics goes on forever.

NURENBERG: Something the speaker-to-be knows very well.

Gary Nurenberg, CNN, Washington.


HARRIS: Going to the gallows -- we'll take you to one place in America where hanging is still an option, dead ahead in THE NEWSROOM.

COLLINS: And later in THE NEWSROOM, we focus on medical news. This one will hit you in the gut -- pain, gas, cramps. But it's more than all of that. It can threaten your health in many different ways. About three million Americans live with something called celiac disease and must adhere to an incredibly strict diet.

Ever heard of gluten?

We're going to tell you all about it, right here today.

We're going to be talking in our 11:00 hour with a leading doctor in celiac disease. We want to answer your questions about it. Send them now to

And we're also Minding Your Business in other ways.


COLLINS: Cheryl Casone here now with a live preview -- hi, Cheryl.


U.S. bank customers are not feeling the love these days.

I'm going to have that story straight ahead in THE NEWSROOM.


COLLINS: Ever get the feeling that maybe your bank doesn't care so much about you?


COLLINS: Cheryl Casone is Minding Your Business now.

I mean they're just really not very friendly sometimes -- Cheryl.

CASONE: They certainly have that reputation, that is true. In fact, you know, there was a survey done by IBM. It was, you know, how do you feel about your bank? Do you like your bank? Are they doing good work for you?


Well, 50 percent of those that were surveyed said yes, their bank does a good job when it comes to rational attributes. They have good account services. If there's a problem with their account it gets fixed. That was all lovely, well, good, great.

But, 26 percent say that when it comes to motive attributes, their bank just doesn't value them. They don't feel loved by their bank. They don't think that their bank listens to them. Their bank doesn't know anything about their business, for example.

So a lot of banking customers out there saying you know what?

Thanks for doing such good technical work, but you could be a little nicer when you do that work, which, I think makes sense, to be honest with you.

COLLINS: Yes. I mean maybe a lot of people think that, boy, if I have a whole ton of money that I've invested in their bank, they'll, you know, pay attention to me and know more.

CASONE: Right.

COLLINS: But the average American, who does just their checking or maybe a little bit of savings to a bank...

CASONE: And it's important...

COLLINS: ... they get forgotten about?

CASONE: It's important for banks to do this kind of survey because it's customer satisfaction.


CASONE: It makes you want to keep your customers happy, you know?

COLLINS: Absolutely.

And one thing that's not going to keep them happy, I am quite sure, is the fact that millions of Americans get their identities stolen every year.


COLLINS: And a lot of them are actually stolen by family and friends.

CASONE: Yes, not...

COLLINS: Not very close friends.

CASONE: Nice, isn't it? COLLINS: Yes.

CASONE: Yes, this one is a -- this is a really nice one.

Yes, nine to 10 million Americans each year get their identities stolen. That number has not decreased. If anything, identity theft has gotten worse every year.

But an interesting story in the "New York Times" this morning. This woman, she and her husband, they divorced, she steals the identities of her own children and racks up a lot of credit card debt under the kids' Social Security numbers.

Nice mom.

And, really, when it comes to I.D. theft, most of the time you don't know who steals your identity. But half of those surveyed that said that they do find out who stole their identity say it was a family member, a neighbor, a friend, their co-anchor. No, just kidding.

HARRIS: Nice. Nice.

CASONE: Watch it, Tony.

COLLINS: He doesn't want my identity.

CASONE: I bet she's got good credit, Tony.

COLLINS: I don't know.

CASONE: I don't know.

COLLINS: Well, yes, we've talked about this before, though. I mean stealing the identity of children and the way that they get taken advantage of.


COLLINS: And sometimes they don't find out until years and years later, when they become into adulthood and try to get their own credit.

So certainly something to watch out for today.

Cheryl Casone, appreciate it very much.

CASONE: You bet.

HARRIS: Kind of an overcast day in Washington, D.C.

Let's take you back to look at the live pictures now of the ceremonial groundbreaking. Underway now, the ceremonies leading up to the actual groundbreaking, the remembrances, the actual ceremony to run-through the noon hour today. The event organized by the Washington, D.C. Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial Project Foundation, Incorporated.

This will be the first monument to be built on the National Mall honoring an individual African-American.

We will talk to a woman who knows the King family very well.

What's the family thinking on this day?

She's in THE NEWSROOM -- Mayor Shirley Franklin, the mayor of Atlanta.

Strategy session -- new options on Iraq.

Does a bipartisan study group have answers?

A closer look in THE NEWSROOM.


HEIDI COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR, CNN NEWSROOM: All right. This happened just a couple moments ago. We always look for fun and exciting shots at the opening bell at the NYSE. So, there we have, today, the Pink Panther. Did you know, he's the mascot of Owens- Corning? See that? And he's very happy to be there.

TONY HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR, CNN NEWSROOM: Da-da, da-da, to-do, ta- da...

COLLINS: Thank you. Background music here, too.

The Dow closed on Friday at 12,108, opening up right around that level. Of course, we will be watching it, down about 17 points or so. But watch it throughout the day for you.

HARRIS: Realizing a dream. A national memorial honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We will talk with a woman who knows the King family very well. She is in the NEWSROOM.


ANNOUNCER: Live in the CNN NEWSROOM, Heidi Collins and Tony Harris.

COLLINS: What the to do about Iraq? President Bush says he welcomes new ideas and he's about to get the some. The president is meeting today with the key advisory group on the war, will it be the first step toward changing course? CNN's Dan Lothian now, with a closer look.


DAN LOTHIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT, CNN NEWSROOM (voice over): The war Iraq, as Donald Rumsfeld now admits, is not going well enough and the pressure is mounting to find a solution. Staying the course, no longer seen as an option. BRIG. GEN. JAMES MARKS (RET.), CNN MILITARY ANALYST: We can't, number one, go catatonic and freeze in the headlights. Number two, we can't just do an about-face and march out of country, say, adios, my friend, this is your problem.

LOTHIAN: James Baker and Lee Hamilton heading the 10-member, bipartisan Iraq study group, have been meeting since April to find a strategy for moving forward in Iraq, consulting with military and political leaders in the United States and Iraq. CNN's military analyst, retired Army General James Marks, says options such as more troops on the ground, or pulling back forces into Kuwait, should be part of a broader policy.

MARKS: It has to be about the greater Southwest Asia -- and the key player, clearly, is Iran in terms of how we move forward in Southwest Asia.

LOTHIAN: In addition to Baker, a former secretary of State, and Hamilton, a former long-time congressional expert in foreign affairs, the group includes other prominent figures who have been working behind the scenes. Retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, long time civil rights leader and Washington power broker Vernon Jordan and Secretary of Defense Nominee Robert Gates, a former CIA director poised to take his homework from the study group to the Pentagon.

LINDA ROBINSON, "U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT": He's been getting the full range of briefings, but he's also been reaching out to some people. Some of the sources I have been talking to, he has been talking to them privately, to try to get more understanding of exactly where the Iraqi players are willing to go, and not willing to go.

LOTHIAN: Gates and other members recently visited Baghdad to get a closer look, trying to develop new options for ending a complicated war.

ROBINSON: There is no panacea, and this Baker-Hamilton group is not going to magically come up with a solution that solves all problems tomorrow.


HARRIS: We need to get to Chad Myers now.



COLLINS: Hey, you know what? Later in the NEWSROOM we are going to be focusing on some medical news. This one will hit you in the gut. Pain, gas, cramps, but it's actually more than that. It can lead to malignancies, anemia, osteoporosis, some neurological diseases. And if you don't know you have it, which apparently 97 percent of Americans don't know that they do, folks who may be affected by gluten.

You can't have bread, you can't have pasta, but that's the easy part. We will be talking about Celiac disease. Go ahead and send your questions to us, coming up in the 11:00 hour we will be talking to a leading doctor in this disease. Again, Celiac disease, go ahead and send in your questions to this address here. We will get them answered for you.


HARRIS: Back to Washington, D.C. now. A big day along the Mall there in Washington, ground breaking for the memorial for Martin Luther King, Jr. President Bush will speak. So will former President Clinton. Shortly, we understand, Oprah Winfrey, Maya Angelou, Senator Barack Obama, many other prominent Americans. Tommy Hilfiger, the designer, heads up the big Hilfiger Design company --

COLLINS: Part of it.

HARRIS: Absolutely, part of it. He's speaking now, and he has been instrumental in getting us to where we are on this day in terms of donating to this huge effort. This is the first memorial built honoring an African-American right there in the Mall, right there along the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C. Quite a remarkable day. Our very own Soledad O'Brien, co-hosting the festivities today.

COLLINS: From the East Coast now to the West Coast. A new investigation into a violent arrest by Los Angeles police. The officers were originally cleared, but that was before this videotape showed up on the website YouTube. That's led to a call for action. CNN's Chris Lawrence has the story.


CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN CORRESPONDENT, AMERICAN MORNING (voice over): The L.A.P.D. is investigating whether there are any discrepancies between what this videotape shows and what the officers wrote in their police report.

The video shows Officer Patrick Ferrell punching William Cardenas six times. The report counts only two punches. Well over half a million people have now watched the 20-second clip on poplar web site, YouTube, including the FBI., which just launched a separate investigation from the L.A.P.D. Police say William Cardenas is a known gang member who ran when ordered to stop and resisted arrest. His attorney says he's not in a gang and had reason to struggle.

KWAKU DUREN, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: The resistance you see, or interpreted from that video, is simply because Mr. Cardenas is unable to breathe because of the knee that's on his neck.

LAWRENCE: The police chief warns against a rush to judgment.

CHIEF WILLIAM BRATTON, LOS ANGELES POLICE: There is a presumption of innocence until show otherwise, that applies to the police officers as well as defendants.

LAWRENCE: The court of public is another matter.

NAJEE ALI, PROJECT ISLAMIC H.O.P.E.: This is Rodney King all over again.

LAWRENCE: But is it?

CONSTANCE RICE, CIVIL RIGHTS ATTORNEY: It's more complicated than any video is going to tell you.

LAWRENCE: Civil rights attorney Connie Rice puts the latest video in perspective.

RICE: It's probably comparable to the Englewood case where the teenager who is unresponsive got slammed on the hood of a car by an officer who was twice his size. It's not on the order of the Rodney King or the Stanley Miller, when there were 11 strikes with a deadly weapon.

LAWRENCE: Rice says it's time to examine the L.A.P.D.'s overall attitude.

RICE: There's a deeper problem here, which is a use of force culture that seems at odds with what normal folks see through their eyes. We are not looking through cop eyes. We are looking through lay folk eyes.

LAWRENCE: It's a difference investigators will have to reconcile. Chris Lawrence, CNN, Los Angeles.


COLLINS: Quickly take you directly back to Washington, D.C., at the memorial for Martin Luther King, Jr., the groundbreaking ceremony today. We see former President Bill Clinton at the microphone. Let's listen.


BILL CLINTON, FMR. PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: ... members of the King family, reverend clergy, lawmakers, ladies and gentlemen, it is my great honor to sign the legislation approving this memorial in 1996, and in 1999 to have the National Capital Planning Commission approve the construction of the King memorial on the National Mall.

It belongs here. Proof of Dr. King's famous injunction that the arc of history is long, but it bends toward justice. Not far from here is the memorial to Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence. Who told us that we are all created equal, and pledged along with our other founders their lives, fortunes and sacred honor, to form a more perfect union.

But on the walls of Mr. Jefferson's memorial are his famous words that when he thought of slavery, he trembles to think that God is just. He knew we had left much undone.

We are in the shadow of Mr. Lincoln's memorial. Lincoln saved the Union for future generations, and abolished slavery, but left much undone. Here there will be a memorial to Martin Luther King, the voice and spirit of the movement to lift the last legal, racial barriers to our more perfect union.

The monument, however beautiful it turns out to be, will be but a physical manifestation of the monument already constructed in the lives and hearts of millions of Americans. Who are more just, more decent, more successful, more perfect because he lived.

It will also be a reminder of Martin Luther King's conviction that in the struggle for freedom, equality and justice, non-violence, his passion for peace, is the most effective strategy. When the real battlefield is the human heart, civil disobedience works better than suicide bombing. Fighting your opponents with respect and reason works better than aspersion and attack.

In this last years, Dr. King expanded his non-violent crusade to embrace the struggle for economic justice and world peace, as the logical extensions of his efforts to create the beloved community. Those struggles and the honest debate over how best to pursue them, and the continuing temptation to abandon respect and reason for aspersion and attack, all that is still with us.

I suspect if he were here speaking at his own dedication, Dr. King would remind us that the best way to honor him is to pursue his dream, and embrace his means, to combat terror and create a world with more partners and fewer terrorists; to grow the economy and provide more equal opportunity for all to benefit from it, in incomes, health care and education.

To be faithful to our love of family, community and nation and open our hearts to all who seek to belong to communities of the common good. To use the resources God has so graciously bestowed on us, and still preserve God's Earth for all future generations.

As Dr. King wrote from the Birmingham jail, "Progress never rolls in on wheels of inevitably. It is made by people who do not grow weary in doing good, secure in the knowledge," as he said, "that the time is always right to do right."

Let us build this monument and keep the monuments in our heart and remember if he were here, he would remind us that the time remains right, to do right. Thank you very much, and God bless you all.



HARRIS: Former President Clinton at the groundbreaking ceremony today for the MLK Monument, the memorial there in Washington, D.C., on the Mall.

With us here in Atlanta, Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin. Good to see you. Thank you for coming in this morning.

MAYOR SHIRLEY FRANKLIN, ATLANTA: It's good to be here. And it's wonderful to see this live from Washington, D.C.

HARRIS: Yes. Four minutes for a Clinton speech. That might be a record, four minutes.

I have to ask you, though, on this day, such a huge day in Washington, what are your thoughts?

FRANKLIN: Well, I'm thrilled. Here we have a Georgian, an Atlantian, who has had tremendous impact on civil rights and human rights around the world, and to have a memorial that we can celebrate and really find inspiration in, is wonderful for us. I think it's a historic day not just for America, but also for Atlanta.

HARRIS: Let me pick up on that. It's something for us, it can be inspirational for us. Do we need a monument like this, $100 million there on the mall in Washington, D.C.? Martin Luther King lives here for me, in your heart as well, in the hearts of millions of people, not only here in the United States, not only African-Americans, but people around the world. Do we really need an edifice, a monument, a memorial of this kind? Certainly it will be spectacular.

FRANKLIN: I don't think there's any question we need to memorialize and to demonstrate in concrete terms the legacy of the civil rights movement and Dr. King's leadership needs to be memorialized. I traveled to China recently, and I was in the town of Wuhan (ph), the city of Wuhan (ph), 8 million people. And one of the investments of the Chinese government, in recent years, has been to tell the history in monuments.

So that people can come, school children and visitors can come to their parks and to their public spaces to learn the history. So you can read the history and you can also learn it through the visualization.

HARRIS: You have a little bit of flexibility. You can stay with us for a few minutes?


HARRIS: OK, let's do this. Let's take a quick break, and we will come back and spend some more minutes with Mayor Shirley Franklin, as we remember Martin Luther King, Jr., in Washington, D.C. today. The groundbreaking for the King memorial in Washington. You are in the NEWSROOM.


HARRIS: Send you back to Washington, D.C. now. CeCe Winans, singing there now. Let's listen for just a moment.

CECE WINANS, GOSPEL SINGER (singing): He's going to bring us to the shores ...

HARRIS: Obviously a big day along the Mall in Washington, D.C., groundbreaking for the memorial for Martin Luther King, Jr. President Bush will speak in just a few minutes. We've heard from former President Bill Clinton.

With us, in studio, on the set with us, Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin. Why aren't you there, Shirley?

FRANKLIN: I very much wanted to be there. I feel as if I'm there in, in spirit, and I will follow the development very closely of the monument. But I had to be here to host a conference of women, from around the world, a small conference of 40 women under the auspices of the United Nations UNITAR, to discuss gender equality. So I think those leading the civil rights movement would understand and give me an excused absence.

HARRIS: Yes, absolutely.

I have to ask you, $100 million is a lot of money, and that's the price tag for this monument. Boy, were you able to help the brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha when they made this decision some 20 years ago, that they wanted to build this memorial? Did they seek out your counsel?

FRANKLIN: In recent years they did. I have spoken with Harry Johnson out of Texas and the Alphas.

HARRIS: Shirley, if I could, let's listen for just a moment to Oprah Winfrey.


OPRAH WINFREY, TALK SHOW HOST, CIVIL RIGHTS ADVOCATE: Where I am alone, and so today, to Martin Luther King and all of those who walked the line for us, the boycott line and the sit-in lines, the protest lines, from Montgomery to Selma to Birmingham to Cicero, they were insulted and brutalized and hosed and humiliated again and again. But in the words of Sterling Brown (ph), "They kept a coming on.""

He said, "Strong men, keep a coming on, keep a coming on, keep a coming on stronger. Strong men getting stronger." That's what they did.

And because of them, led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., it's why I do what I do. It's why I say what I say to millions of people all over the world every day. It is because of Dr. King, and all those who worked with him, that I stand. And because of them, I have a voice that can be heard.

And I want you to know that I do not take that for granted, not for one breath. Not for one breath. I live in a state -- I live in a state of reverence for where I have come from and for the price that was paid for me to be here.

Because he was the seed of the free, Dr. King, I get to be the blossom, and live the dream had a he dreamed for his children, for Dexter, Yolanda, Bernice and Martin. And we all are the children of his for fortuitous dream.

I remember when I was 16 years old and in an assembly program -- you all remember that, right, assemblies? I don't know if they do that anymore. But I will never forget the day I was going to have an algebra test, and I knew I wasn't ready. And I got called to auditorium and Reverend Jesse Jackson was speaking.

And in that speech he said, "Excellence is the best deterrent to racism. Excellence is the best deterrent to sexism. Therefore, in all things be excellent," he said. And that speech had a profound impact on me. I was never not prepared for an algebra test or any other test after that. And I started to seriously, after that speech, look at my history and all the forbearers whose lives had been testimonials of excellence, Frederick Douglass, and all the slaves before him, whose names we never knew. Sojourner Truth, Mary McCloud Bethune and, of course, Martin Luther King, Jr., who unleashed the power of hope through his will to love, and for his love of all people.

And so as we break ground on this memorial today, we participate in an act of love, as well as a great civic ritual, one that powerfully connects us to the river of American history. And we take our place along with generations