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Haitian Refugee Issue Brings up Immigration Debate; Should the U.S. Allow More Haitians into the Country?; Those Reporting on Haiti Have Tough Time; A 24-Year-Old Man Buried Alive Nearly 12 Days; President Obama Year in Review

Aired January 23, 2010 - 17:00   ET



DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, how in the world can anyone survive for almost 12 days buried beneath mountains of rubble? One man did, and we're going to show you how live.

The president one year later, his State of the Union in just a few days. His health care reform plan killed by a republican who replaced one of his biggest allies.

And the reporter story, one of our very own takes us behind the scenes of covering Haiti. One of the biggest natural disasters ever.

And he made women swoon, Teddy Pendergrass, a musical sex symbol, laid to rest today in Philadelphia.

Hello everyone, thanks for joining us.

We begin with breaking news tonight out of Haiti. A man who was buried for nearly 12 days was pulled out alive just within the hour. He was trapped inside a huge pile of bricks and concrete which used to be a hotel in Port-au-Prince where he worked. And incredibly, he does not have any serious injuries. Can you believe it?

Cnn's Hala Gorani on the scene. Hala, what's going on?

HALA GORANI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi there, Don. Just a few minutes ago, the crowd just erupted into spontaneous applause. Journalists, rescue workers, ordinary Haitians gathered here were all clapping because to hear positive news is something everybody here savors. You said it, a 24-year-old man survived for almost 12 days under the rubble of a collapsed hotel. (INAUDIBLE). We understand he might have had access to water. There were other people he was with. (INAUDIBLE)

Now here's what is absolutely amazing. And I'm not using this word lightly. Apparently he was able to move around. His arms, his legs, his toes. He had his clothes on. He even had socks on. He looked like he was OK. And he was speaking to rescue workers throughout the operation. He was in verbal contact with them the entire time. So, as you mentioned there, Don, almost 12 days after the earthquake struck. And as I stand here in utter devastation in this center of Port-au-Prince, at least one positive story emerging. Back to you. LEMON: Unbelievable. Thank you so much.

How exactly does this happen? How does one survive really for 12 days? I want to go now to Dr. Panchali Dhar, she is a medical doctor and anesthesiologist. How do you survive for 12 days? Because usually for 12 days without food or water, most people say, is pretty much impossible.

Panchali Dhar, MEDICAL DOCTOR AND ANESTHESIOLOGIST (via telephone): Well, the main thing is the human body can continue without food for days and weeks but what the danger lays is not being able to drink water. Everybody has minimum fluid requirements on a daily basis, on a narrowly basis. But when you're in that kind of heat, you need more water because you're perspiring and you're under rubble. So, what happens is, without access to water, your urine output decreases and your kidneys begin to shut down because you want to conserve fluid in your body.

Most of these people that are buried under the rubble I would imagine have some kidney failure or kidney injury going on right now, renal failure. When you crush your muscles under rubble, the muscle breakdown products also cause further injury to the kidneys. When your kidneys shut down, when you're dehydrated, you begin to perhaps lose consciousness even.

LEMON: Well, Dr. Dhar, here's my question. We're seeing -- when we've gotten official word that this is now really turning into -- instead of rescue, into recovery. This is the man that you see, you're watching video of him being pulled out as we said almost 12 days. It's a recovery now sadly and most people had perished. That's what they do believe. But there can be a number of survivors who are still there. It depends on their health, how healthy they are, correct?

DHAR: Right. Your health to begin with depends on your ability to survive. The stronger you are, the greater your ability to tolerate such injury, lack of food and water. If you're old and frail and you're buried under rubble, there's a good chance if you had any pre- existing illnesses that you're not going to be able fight all of that type of stress in the body from lack of food and water.

LEMON: Does this surprise you to see someone coming out after almost nearly 12 days after this happened?

DHAR: You know, the young kids, they could probably make it more likely than the old and frail. The healthier people will likely make it. It's not absolutely unusual. I would imagine that even after they're brought out of the rubble, they would still have a long way to go because they still are dehydrated. They need fluid. They need nutrition, and they have to be restored to their baseline health, which is going to take a while.

LEMON: Dr. Panchali Dhar, thank you very much for helping us get through this story and our Hala Gorani who is there in Port-au-Prince. You're looking at video of a man who was buried, you can see for 12 days under that rubble. The weight of that concrete steel wood. He's under there. And we're told that he did because it was a market somehow that he may have survived by eating some of the things inside of that market.

So, we're going to check back with our Hala Gorani to get the story behind it and hopefully this gentleman can talk and give some information. We can find out exactly how he survived and we hope -- we hope that there are more survivors buried beneath the rubbles of course still alive, obviously survivors buried beneath the rubble in Haiti. Get back to this story a little bit. Thanks to both of them.

Meantime throngs of mourners turned out today for an outdoor funeral mass for the archbishop of Port-au-Prince. Monsignor Joseph Serge Miot's body was recovered from the ruins of the National Cathedral two days after the quake. The president of Haiti attended the funeral. Also killed in the quake was Vicar General Monsignor Charles Benoit.

Fires remain an ongoing hazard in the severely damaged city there. This one broke out, look at the ruins of a textile factory and quickly grew out of control. Can you believe that? That's the last thing that they need on top of this natural disaster. Haitian fire crews chose to let it burn and try to keep it from spreading to other buildings.

For many Haitian immigrants, the U.S. has a giant keep out sign on it. That's the truth. But some say, it's time to be more welcoming.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: So, that's how it helps. Haitians are going to be in a position financially to help Haiti themselves.

LEMON: All right. So, what should we do here? What's the real truth? What's going to happen to these people? Are they going to be able to come to the u.s.? My question, is this the new immigrant? We're talking to people on both sides of this issue.

And after a tough week, President Barack Obama gets real about the future of his health care reform plan. We'll talk about that.

And make sure you join us. Looking at Twitter right now and at Facebook as well, MySpace, Sends us at I-report, we'll put that on as well.


LEMON: You know, we've said this a lot but I think we can continue to say it. If you were paying attention to politics this week, especially what happened in Massachusetts because it spreads across the country. One election changed so much this week in Washington and again, around the nation.

Scott Brown, a mostly unknown republican, took Ted Kennedy's senate seat in Massachusetts. He campaigned on a pledge to kill the president's health care reform bill. And by taking away the democrats' 60-vote advantage in the senate, Brown may have done exactly that. Some democrats face a new reality now. There he is meeting with Harry Reid. That happened on Thursday in Washington. But, you know, democrats now vow to respect the voters who sent Brown to Washington, to regroup as a party and to pass some form of health care reform, even if it has to be scaled down.

The president's signature issue on life support, really. He is headed to the heartland. He did head to the heartland, acknowledging in Ohio that he would run into a political quote, "buzz saw," but he is vowing to press ahead. The president delivers his State of the Union on Wednesday night. He has been in office almost exactly one year, really exactly one year now and he is facing some real tests not only at home but overseas, including two wars. We'll have that for you right here 8:00 p.m. Wednesday night on cnn.

There appears to be some good news, though, in Iraq in what was once really among the deadliest zones for insurgents and American troops. U.S. marines officially pulled out of the region today wrapping up a seven-year mission in the area. In a statement, the u.s. military called today's pullout a significant milestone. It is the first Sunni province -- the first Sunni province to be returned to control of Baghdad's Shiite controlled government. Very interesting.

In Iraq today, Vice President Joe Biden announced the justice department will appeal the dismissal of charges against five former Blackwater security guards. The security contractors were guarding u.s. diplomats in Baghdad back in 2007 when they opened fire in a crowded intersection, killing 17 Iraqis. A federal judge threw out the charges last month saying prosecutors mishandled evidence and violated the guards' constitutional rights.

While President Obama marking one year in office this week, we decided to see how his presidency is viewed around the world. Our international unit is on top of that for us, and there's some very interesting responses. So, we start now in Iraq.

DIANA MAGNAY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I'm Diana Magnay in Baghdad. Now, the most significant contribution that President Obama has made to U.S. Iraq policy so far has been his announcement that the u.s. would withdraw all its comeback troops from this country by August, 2010. And there's still a little questions marks here whether that date is suitable, especially so soon after the March elections, whether the security situation will have stabilized itself significantly by then for that to happen.

There's still very much a sense here that Afghanistan is President Obama's war and he's not as involved in Iraq as his predecessor was, despite the fact that there are still many issues here that need to be resolved. But there's very much a sense on the streets, too, that President Obama has good intentions, that they are to bring peace to this region, unlike his predecessor, George Bush, who was, of course, extremely unpopular here.

LEMON: It's interesting because of our presence internationally, we can bring you those kinds of stories. We are going to bring you more throughout the night here on cnn.

Security officials in British says, a terrorist attack is highly likely but they stopped sort of saying, an attack is imminent. Yesterday the terror alert level in the U.K. was raised to severe, its second highest. They don't take that lightly there. They usually don't move it up and down. That matches the alert level right here in the United States now. British authority said, there was no specific intelligence of any planned attack but they urge residents to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activities.

And you're hearing a lot about how Americans view year one of the Obama presidency. We'll have more reports on what they are saying in other countries, as I said, we are going to take you over seas. See the difference, is there a difference between what the people are saying here versus overseas? We'll see.

Also, some counterfeit diet capsules could kill you. And the interesting thing is these are diet capsules, they are kind of a capsules of ones you can see every day in your local supermarket or pharmacy, right on the shelf, over the counter. So, you want to pay attention. We'll tell you where the fake versions are being sold.


LEMON: I want to say buyer beware. You see right there over my shoulder -- this side. Those pills you have seen them on the shelves and you've seen in the commercials, right? But really be careful. This is a buyer beware if you're taking alli, it's called alli, the diet pills or you've just bought a bottle, you need to make sure they're not the fake ones. They have to be the real ones because fake ones can actually make you very sick and they could actually kill you we're being told.

The fda warned consumers counterfeit versions of the over-the-counter drug are being sold mainly online on auction sites. The fake pills contain excessive amounts of a prescription drug and a controlled substance that can put people with cardiovascular disease at risk. Make sure you check those pills and if you didn't buy them from a legitimate store, shouldn't take them. You can go to, for more information on this warning. So be careful.

We are going to turn now to our Jacqui Jeras. There she is. Pop Jacqui up in our cnn severe weather center. This is some severe weather. Jacqui, when I hear about a tornado warning in California, it's always very interesting. But is that over now?

JACQUI JERAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's over now. Yes, the tornado warning is over but if you lived around the Brentwood area, I'm sure you heard the sirens going off. You can see the scattered showers here around the San Francisco Bay area. And here's the cell that we're talking about right there. The sheriff's department did report a couple of funnel clouds with it but no touchdowns and no damage. The cell has dissipated and is no longer severe. So, we'll continue to monitor this area. If we get any additional spin ups, but we don't anticipate this could be a big deal for you this afternoon.

Our next specific storm is witting in the wings. There you can see it over the open waters. And this is going to be arriving late Monday and into Tuesday for much of California. Not nearly as strong as the last storm that we dealt with. So, that is a little bit of good news. But we could see another half of an inch to an inch of rainfall or so. And in our I-reporters have been sending us in a lot of videos from the southwest. This one is from Mary Davis in Prescott Valley in Arizona. And all the snow, stayed there about 14 inches, then they had rain and then they had snow. Not fun because she says, very icy right now but you saw her dog pepper there apparently having a good time.

Check out these pictures, by the way too that we have for you, from Hesperia, California. Just gorgeous pictures of that snow in the mountains. We have some incredible snowfall totals from you coming out of California. As much as seven feet of snow has fallen. But avalanche warnings are in effect. They used a lot of caution if you're thinking about trying to go out there and joy some of this weather. OK. That's just some of the nation's myth section. And we're real concern about severe weather developing here this afternoon at evening.

We're watching a line right here around Texarkana. If this intensifies anymore, the sbc said that they could issue a tornado watch with that. So, we will continue to watch that situation of course, as necessary, we'll break in, Don. And that storm moves east for tomorrow. Some really heavy rain up and down the east coast. One to three inches. We got flood watches from New York State all the way down to Florida.

All right. Thank you very much, Jacqui. We'll come back if we need to, OK.

LEMON: You know, if public education gets an f, right, then waiting for superman, that's the name of this, a documentary, could be the cinematic dissertation as to why that is. Why it gets an f?

And you know that documentary has getting a major nod at the Sundance Film Festival this week. I talked to Singer John Legend, who recorded a song for that film. But before we got into what we talk about the song that he sang, we talked about the song he sang last night at the help for Haiti fund-raiser. Take a listen.

So John, we know there's a huge tragedy happening in Haiti right now and you are very interested in that. But you took some time to go to Sundance to talk about this. Why is this so important to you?

JOHN LEGEND, SINGER: Even before the earthquake, there was a lot of suffering going on there. There was a lot of neglect by the international community there and certainly it's an urgent priority right now that we help Haiti and that's why I was at the telethon last night. But I feel like here in the United States, we still have a lot of people who were being denied opportunity and a big reason for that is a lack of access to a quality education. And this film, I feel like really explores that issue in depth and proposes some possible ways out for us, some ways forward. Some great examples of schools that are working around the country and ideas that we need to replicate around the country.

LEMON: How do you write a song for a movie about education?

LEGEND: Well, obviously, you don't want to get too heavy in the policy area when you're writing a song. You want to write something that's emotional, that's inspiring and connects to the issue but doesn't feel too preachy. And I really just tried to think about the kids when I was writing the song. Think about the kids in the film. I got to see a lot of clips from the film when I was writing the song. And they're really inspiring. The stories are inspiring.

They're kind of gut wrenching and frustrating at the same time as well. Because some of these kids are applying to lotteries to get into these great schools and some of kids in the film don't win the lottery. They don't get into the schools that they are trying to get into and they end up stuck in failing public schools. And when I was writing the song, I was thinking about the plight of those kids in wanting to do something to, you know, plead their case. And my first line of the song is, "They wait to plead their case." Because I really felt like that's what the song was supposed to do.

LEMON: Most of the problems in the country or in the world really can be solved through education. Everybody says, knowledge is power. Is that one reason that you're so focused on this and this is so important to you? Do you think that can take care of poverty?

LEGEND: At the root of poverty is lack of access to education, a lack of a way out, a lack of a way to break that cycle. And you empower people to break the cycle of poverty when you educate them. Otherwise, they don't have the power to do that. And so, I feel like all of the work I have done on poverty, I have seen that the education is the way out for a lot of these kids. And we need to make sure they have that opportunity.

So, there are so many great movies out there, "Avatar," a number of movies and it's expensive to go to a movie. So, why should I go? Why should the viewer to go to see this movie?

LEGEND: Well, I think, first of all, the stories are very interesting. You get to see these kids that come from different backgrounds who are all trying to have a better life than their parents had. And then the issue is so important and urgent in our time. I feel like not only will you, you know, be inspired and you learn a lot but you'll really connect to it. And I think you'll leave the film kind of heartbroken for some of the kids but also optimistic that we can make a difference and there's something to be done. So I believe it's definitely a film worth seeing.

LEMON: John Legend at Sundance today doing really two greats things, not only singing great music but helping Haiti and trying to help education, kids get an education around the country. Good job, John Legend, thank you for doing that. We look forward to that movie.

You know, it took an earthquake for the u.s. to give Haitians temporary protective status, OK. So, this story is a bit controversial. Should it stop there or does America have a bigger responsibility here? We'll hear from both sides of this debate. And we want you to weigh in on it as well. So, send me some of your comments on Twitter, on Facebook or send us at I-report. Again, we'll get on any part of the conversation.

And cnn correspondents have been all over the Haiti earthquake story. Right all over the region covering. It's tough to do. Look at them. They're pulling bodies out of there, right. People are suffering there. Can you imagine covering these scenes every day and trying to keep your composure? Well, one of our reporters back from the quake zone shares her experiences with us


LEMON: We've been hearing a lot of, you know, political pundits, a lot of people here in America, average everyday citizens talk about the president's performance one year -- one year after he took office. So, President Obama this week marked his first year in office, right. And today we're checking to see how his presidency, not only playing out here in the u.s. but around the world. Now our opinions from Russia.

MATTHEW CHANCE, SENIOR CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm Matthew Chance in Moscow. And President Obama's first year in the white house is seen here as having a positive impact on relations with the Kremlin. He abandoned the controversial missile defense plans that Moscow opposed. Vowed to reset the strained relationship with Russia and it's in the midst of negotiating a cold war strategic weapons treaty that could signal a new era in arms control. But critics argue the concessions made by Washington are one-sided, and that President Obama in his first year has got very little from his Russian counterparts in return.

LEMON: All right. We want to give you some of the top stories right now. Some say it is a miracle, and I guess we can really say that, or either some really good luck. Either way, a 24-year-old man was pulled alive, out alive today from earthquake rubble in Port-au- Prince. Despite being trapped for nearly 12 days, he had no serious injuries. It took French rescuers about four hours to dig him out once they discovered that he was still alive.

It was once one of Iraq's deadliest zones for American troops. Well, today, u.s. marines officially pulled out of the Anbar province, they pulled out of there, wrapping up a seven-year mission in the region. U.s. army soldiers will remain posted in Anbar but today's pullout is considered a big step in the complete u.s. withdrawal from Iraq.

Great Britain raises its threat level from substantial to severe. And that means a terrorist attack there is now highly likely. According to the country's Home Security Secretary Alan Johnson. He says, there is no intelligence right now suggesting an attack is definitely coming soon.

Americans open their hearts and they've opened their wallets and they're continuing to open their hearts and their wallets. But they aren't opening their borders, right? Not for sure -- we're not for sure yet what's going to happen in that perspective. I have a guest and I'm going to talk to him in just a bit.

When it comes to the earthquake victims -- we're talking about Haiti. As our Ed Lavandera tells us, some says this is a time to start changing our immigration policy. Take a look. We will talk about it, too. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ED LAVANDERA, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is the frenzy inside a Catholic church inside the heart of Miami's Little Haiti neighborhood. Thousands of Haitian immigrants, many in the United States illegally, are applying for Temporary Protective Status, or TPS. It allows Haitian internationals to live in the U.S. legally for the next 18 months.

For years, Haitian-Americans lobbied for TPS. but many advocates now see an opportunity to make bigger changes, to ease years of immigration restrictions towards Haitians coming to the United States.

IRVIN DAPHNIS, HAITIAN LAWYERS ASSOCIATION: This now is an opportunity for Haiti to change. This is the time right now. And many feel this is a last time. A lot of people feel like this is our time.

LAVANDERA: Horrifying images like these have been common in the ocean waters between the United States and Haiti. It's a dangerous and deadly journey for many who try to make it to American shores. Every year U.S. Coast Guard officials say about 1,600 Haitians are stopped on the high seas and sent back home.

Irvin Daphnis, with the Haitian Lawyers Association in Miami, says if more Haitians could work legally in the U.S., it would help their country recover from decades of poverty and corruption back home.

DAPHNIS: So that's how it helps. Haitians are going to be able to be in a position financially to help Haiti themselves.

LAVANDERA (on camera): When the Obama administration approved temporary protective status for Haitians already in the U.S. before the earthquakes, it was expected that some 30,000 people would apply. But immigration officials now say that number could top 200,000.

(voice-over): U.S. officials have been quick to temper any hopes of vast changes in immigration laws towards Haitians, who may now try to come to the United States.

HILLARY CLINTON, SECRETARY OF STATE: We are not going to be accepting into the United States Haitians who are attempting to make it to our shores. They will be interdicted. They will be repatriated.

LAVANDERA: U.S. officials say emergency plans are in place to handle a mass exodus of Haitians fleeing the earthquake-ravaged Haiti. But so far, there have been no signs of Haitians jumping on boats.

LT. CHRIS O'NEILL, U.S. COAST GUARD: It's very, very dangerous and dynamic. And I can't stress enough how important it is for people in Haiti to stay home, stay safe, help rebuild your country. And we'll help you rebuild it.

LAVANDERA: But many Haitian-Americans say help rebuilding should include opening more doors to their beleaguered countrymen.

Ed Lavandera, CNN, Miami.


LEMON: Listen, this is -- it's being debated now, but this is going to become an even bigger debate, because a lot of people could end up here. So after this massive tragedy of the earthquake in Haiti, should the U.S. allow more Haitians into the country? Let's talk about it now.

Phil Kent joins me here. He is executive director of the American Immigration Control Foundation; and Wilfredo Allen is an immigration attorney joining us live from Miami.

Thanks to you, sir, in Miami.

Thank you here.

I'm not going to pretend. I'm not an immigration expert but I do hear people talking about this. What do you do when you see people -- their hearts are going oh, my gosh, look at these people. And a lot of people are saying let them come in because they need the help. What do you say to that? Are you for that?

PHIL KENT, IMMIGRATION CONTROL FOUNDATION: That's why America does have TPS, Temporary Permanent Status, for people that are in need. And, yes, you're right, there is a humanitarian concern. You're going to have, for 18 months, a lot of Haitians applying for TPS.

LEMON: When you said we could end up with as many as 200,000 people.

KENT: Yes.

LEMON: Is this a new immigrant into the country?

KENT: Yes, it is. And also, with unemployment at 10 percent, we don't want people taking American jobs. That's a huge concern, especially down in Florida. And we don't want criminal aliens coming in here or not being deported. One thing I don't like about the Obama administration is they seemed to be stopping all deportation of criminal aliens.

LEMON: Here's what you're saying. There is the assumption, when you say that, that these people will come here and not be a productive part of society or they will be criminals. And I think that offends people when they hear that because that the not necessarily so.

KENT: It's any group. You have your good and your bad. We're the most generous country when it comes to legal immigration, when it comes to granting temporary permanent status. We have a million people coming in annually, every year, legally. So we have a legal right to set the limits.

LEMON: But we have a million people coming in annually legally, we get to decide, and it depends really on what country that person's from. Some people say it has to do with ethnicity and what have you as to how we let them in. Let's get Wilfredo's response on this.

What do you think? Jump in to this debate any time here. You're free to jump in here. Do you agree with any part of what Mr. Kent is saying here?

WILFREDO ALLEN, IMMIGRATION ATTORNEY: I agree with part. I don't know of anybody that advocates for illegal criminal aliens to stay in the United States. I believe if you're a criminal, you should be deported. Doesn't matter what country you're from. It's a privilege to live in the United States. When you commit a crime, you violated that privilege.

But now, the Haitians are a different category right now. Temporary Protective Status, it begins now for 18 months. It would allow close to 60,000 Haitians, who are already here. Now, Temporary Protective Status does not provide protection for criminal aliens. It provides protection for those aliens who are here who have good moral character.

LEMON: All right, Mr. Allen, Wilfredo...

ALLEN: Two things -- two things right now.

LEMON: I will let you finish. But I want to get in here. Go ahead.

ALLEN: Two things. Number one, a work permit. With that work permit, they could have a driver's license and live a normal life. Once they have a work permit, they can work legally, produce legally, have bank accounts, be able to send money to their families in Haiti.

LEMON: And number two, go ahead, what's number two?

ALLEN: Temporary Protective Status provides a way for them to travel back to Haiti and come back to the United States. So many people who lost parents and children can go to Haiti, bury them, help rebuild their country and come back and continue from here to help redevelop.

LEMON: Mr. Allen, I understand. Again, everyone has watched these horrible pictures. We showed a rescue after somebody being there almost 12 days being buried beneath the rubble. We all get it. It's heart-wrenching.

But Mr. Kent does have a point here when you say the United States -- we're already dealing with a terrible economy, a bad job market. When you add possibly 200,000, if not more people on top of that, that affects everyone. That affects the economy. That affects the job market. That affects this country.

ALLEN: You make a good point. Let me take you back to 1980. In 1980, within a four-month period, 125,000 Cubans and 50 Haitians came into the United States in a mass exodus that nobody every wants to see again. And yet, that short period of time, when there was an economic crisis, or short period of time when there was a lot of fear, ended up being that 95 percent of these people were productive. They have provided services. (CROSSTALK)

KENT: And there were serious crime waves that occurred, too.

LEMON: You know what? Go ahead.

ALLEN: No only a crime wave. There was a crime wave that was, in great part, a little bit brought out of proportion because of the way it was publicized. But the crime wave ended up fairly quickly. And what happened was the people who came in, integrated.

KENT: That doesn't help the earthquake victims at all. That doesn't help your crime victims that the crime wave ended quickly. We have a rule of law here in America, and most people...

ALLEN: I believe in the rule of law. If you look at the numbers of Haitians right now living in the United States who are criminal aliens in comparison to the population that they are, it is insignificant. Haitians do not commit....

KENT: You don't know that. You don't know that and I don't know that. I'm here to tell you though...

ALLEN: I'm here in south Florida. I see it every day.

KENT: You have some of those vicious gangs of Haitians in south Florida.

ALLEN: You know, I see people who produce. I see people who work. You know, the sign of criminal, criminals, criminals, is a great fear that creates a fear in the community. But in this community, the fear is not criminals, because nobody advocates for criminals.

KENT: Illegal...


ALLEN: I don't know anybody that say bring in criminal aliens...

ALLEN: Illegal immigrants unfortunately can game the system under Temporary Protective Status. They can have anchor babies. They can marry. So it is a huge burden on American society and American taxpayers who are already straining and we're drowning in red ink.

LEMON: Let me jump in here.


ALLEN: You know, most immigrants right here produce. They pay their own way and they do not remain...

KENT: Not illegal immigrants.

ALLEN: They do not create anchor babies. If a child is born, it's a U.S. child. The people are already here. Temporary Protective Status... (CROSSTALK)

KENT: Legal immigrants, yes. Illegal immigrants, no.

ALLEN: If I may finish. Temporary Protective Status provides protection for those folks who were here before January 12, 2010. They're already here. They have been here for many years and they have been living in substandard conditions by living away from society, by hiding away, by living in the shadows.

LEMON: OK, listen. Mr. Allen?

ALLEN: TPS provides a chance for them to come out of the shadows and help rebuild their country.

LEMON: That will have to be the end of it there. I know we're going a little long here, but I think this is a debate that a lot of people are having. Thank you guys for being so honest.

When you said, you know, there are Haitian gangs, but there are gangs of blacks, Hispanics, whites.

KENT: Yes, there are all kinds of gangs.

LEMON: But the assumption here is that you're bringing someone in who is automatically going to be a criminal. I mean, not everyone...

KENT: No, there's no -- there's no assumption there.

LEMON: OK. So I agree with you there. Here's my thing -- and I really have a quick answer. When you talk about the TPS, Temporary Protection Status, once you get someone into the country, it's really tough to get them out. That's just the beginning. Do you agree or disagree?

KENT: Yes, but especially it's tough to get the criminals out. And it's a small percentage, but it's still people we don't want in this country.

LEMON: Yes. Last words. I just have a few seconds and I'll give it to you.

ALLEN: TPS protects people who are already here. It's not TPS for people who will come in later. TPS is for those who are already here.

LEMON: All right. Thank you so much. I appreciate both of you, Wilfredo Allen and also Phil Kent.

Great discussion. Great discussion. Thank you so much.

KENT: Thank you.

LEMON: Signs of hope amid Haiti's anguish. Our Susan Candiotti, our reporter on the scene. She saw it all. She was one of the first reporters to make it to Port-au-Prince and she's going to join me to talk about it. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: We want to go back now to Port-au-Prince and the dramatic moment just a short time ago when a young man was pulled out alive from the ruins of a hotel that collapsed in the earthquake. French rescuers spent about three hours digging him out. Except for being dehydrated, the 24-year-old man has no apparent injuries. We're told he worked as a clerk in the Hotel Napoli. And when it crashed down on top of him during the quake, he apparently was trapped in a small space that allowed him to move around. We're going to get more information on him and find out exactly how he survived, what were the conditions.

The images out of Haiti have been really, really hard to watch. I have to be honest, sometimes I can't look at it anymore. Our hearts go out to them but it's tough to watch.

Susan Candiotti was one of the first reporters to make it into Port- au-Prince after that quake. She's back now.

We're so glad to see you back here in one piece. And we know it's really tough. We know the people who live there, right, it's tough for them. But I would imagine reporting it and trying to remain calm and keep some sense of balance without breaking down, Susan, is really quite tough.

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT: It's difficult. And you almost feel guilty coming back, Don, because there's so much more to do down there. And, of course, our team and so many others are watching it and reporting on it.

It's hard to believe that one week ago my team and I were still on the ground reporting in Haiti this night after flying there the night of the earthquake. From the start, we steeled ourselves for images we knew would last a lifetime.


CANDIOTTI: We're finally getting onto a helicopter in Santa Domingo to make our way to Port-au-Prince. Let's go.

(voice-over): From the second we boarded a helicopter heading across the Dominican Republic into Haiti, our team braced for the worst. Imploded buildings on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince, the first sign of even more devastation to come.

Once we landed, the dead. Block after block, on sidewalks and streets, victims and no one to collect them, to count them, to identify them.

In those first hours and days, more corporations everywhere. Crushed inside a hotel, we wondered was this victim a worker, a visitor, a guest? Would his family ever find him?

In the streets confusion, fear. A few scavengers pulled chairs from the ruins of a hospital. A children's center next door -- gone. Running down the street, men carrying wooden coffins.

An anguished mother took us to a music school where her son was last seen. Mark is only 12 years old. She clung to a text message he sent her shortly before the earthquake. He tells her he'll see her after class. But the next day, no one can find Mark.

Yet, we hear other voices at the school. a young man is pinned under the wreckage of a five-story building. We stretch our microphone into a cavernous hole.

(on camera): What are you saying to yourself?

UNIDENTIFIED HAITIAN MALE: Myself? As I'm a Christian. I say, Jesus, you know my life is in your hand.

CANDIOTTI (on camera): After about an hour and a half, a little more progress was made. These men using chisels and a blowtorch have freed him up just a little bit more.

(voice-over): We learned the Creole word "crombeet" (ph), people working together for a common goal. In this case, an impromptu assembly line for buckets of water to soothe the man's burning skin.


CANDIOTTI: He is saved.

JOEL RATHON (ph), HAITIAN MALE: I need some help to help them. Don't have enough tools.

CANDIOTTI: Joel Rathon (ph) crawled into a five-story apartment building to rescue his wife after 25 hours. But with no one to help her, she died within minutes. Even worse, he could not dig out his little boy and three other relatives.

(on camera): They are digging deeper and deeper.

(voice-over): Nor could the heroic efforts of this team find a woman in a bank, who texted a message that she was alive. Cameras saw only the dead.

(on camera): Look at the expanse of people.

(voice-over): On a mountain overlooking the city, the 82nd Airborne brings hope four days after the quake.

(on camera): Obviously, there are a lot more people than MREs but so far they handed out, they said, around 2,000 of them.



CANDIOTTI: Oh, I feel very well, too.

(voice-over): Amid the destruction, a moment of tenderness. A mother washes children from a small jug of water. Yet we wondered, can she wipe away the fear of what's to come?


CANDIOTTI: And despite the death and the destruction, other lasting images, children smiling who had nothing left. And a little boy, who amid all of the dirt, offering to shine our dusty boots.

And tonight, the best news of all, of course, another survivor, that 24-year-old young man.

LEMON: That 24-year-old, yes. Unbelievable. Unbelievable. It's Wismond -- Jean-Pierre. W-i-s-m-o-n-d. Not exactly sure if it's Wismond or Wiseman. Anyway, Mr. Jean-Pierre pulled out just a short time ago, 24 years old.

Susan, really unbelievable. And one of the last moments that you showed us there was when you were standing on top -- remember the live shot you did at 10:00 last weekend...


LEMON: Standing on top and the guys were trying to get through. What happened with that particular case?

CANDIOTTI: They were trying so hard and they worked for hours and hours. And then, in the middle of the night, they brought in a huge drill and they went into the side of that building, more towards the bottom. And from there, they could see. they opened up a space and they could see that there were bodies and there were not survivors. They dropped another listening device that could really hear a pin drop. Nothing.

LEMON: Real quickly, are you OK? Do you think -- honestly, I'll be honest with you, do you think you'll have to talk to someone about what you saw?

CANDIOTTI: Oh, for us.

LEMON: No, no, no. For what you've saw. Really, the images are so horrible.

CANDIOTTI: This is something that everyone -- every reporter who covers this kind of a story, naturally the images are in your mind. And you talk it out and people who need extra help will get extra help. But really, I keep coming back to what the Haitian people are going through and their resiliency. And those are the people we really need to worry about the most. But thank you for asking.

LEMON: Yes, We understand. Listen, we get that part of it. But it's true, if you see those things, it's going to affect you. I was just wondering how you were doing.

Thank you so much, Susan. We really appreciate it.

Nice job, by the way.

CANDIOTTI: You're welcome.

LEMON: It could have been a bitter, bitter send off for Conan O'Brien, and who could blame him, right? But his last "Tonight Show" was billed with humor, sadness, and a bit of optimism. We'll hear his parting words to fans.


LEMON: If you're a frequent viewer of CNN, you know we have a thing called "CNN Heroes." This one is a little bit different so watch this one this week. Tonight, something new as we name our "CNN Hero" of the week. Rather than honoring one everyday person who does something extraordinary to help others -- that's important -- we are taking a slight turn to recognize everyday people helping each other.

We simply could not ignore the courage and the resilience of the Haitian people. So "CNN Heroes" salutes the survivors of the Haiti earthquake.


LEMON: The more than six million survivors of the Haiti earthquake are still in dire need of food, water and medical supplies. So for more information on how you can help, visit and click on "Impact Your World."



LEMON: Thank you very much for that, Dr. Gupta.

Last night, Conan O'Brien said goodbye to "The Tonight Show" and hello to a severance package of -- get this -- $45 million, including $12 million for his staff, almost 200 other people. So good luck to Conan O'Brien. It has been big news.

Also, before we go away, I want to say good-bye to a man who was really a sex symbol and a soul singer, Teddy Pendergrass. More of him, more about this life coming up here at 7:00 p.m. Eastern here on CNN. We'll see you then.