We're back with "The roundtable." Donna, I want to get to developments in Ferguson, Missouri. It seems that every 12 months or so, there's some major issue that puts the issue of race front and center... See More
We're back with "The roundtable." Donna, I want to get to developments in Ferguson, Missouri. It seems that every 12 months or so, there's some major issue that puts the issue of race front and center nationally. Some had hoped that the election of president Obama would lead us to the goal of a post racial America. Are we ever going to get there? Of course we will. We have come a long way in the last 50 years. I often think about the sign of the civil rights act in July 1964. One generation, you're not going to erase centuries of dehumanization of racial animosity. You're not going to eliminate any of these issues overnight simply by proclaiming the country to be post racial. I think the country will -- we need to have moments like this when we can have an honest conversation about what is undergirding all of this. When you militarize the police, they look upon the citizens as enemies. Not law-abiding citizens. When you provide resources in a community that is often struck change, of people that can relate to them, you will have issues. I hope they resolve this. My heart hurts for the people of Ferguson, for the parents of Michael brown. For the community. My heart hurts also for every young man and woman today who are still being judged by the color of their skin. Jon, we have so much we can do together and no one person has all of the answers. But we have to have a conversation that goes beyond just these incidents. Let me ask you quickly. President Obama has been criticized by some for waiting too long the weigh in on this. Some thought he was too measured in his comments. Do you think he struck the right tone? Yes. He always strikes the right tone. I don't want president Obama nor do I want anybody else to have all of the answers. That's not going to solve the problem. We have to make sure we equip these communities so they can empower themselves. So children know they can grow up without being singled out by the police. If they're law-abiding, if they're doing wrong, we need to have the resources to deal with this. Rand Paul weighed in saying, he understands why african-americans can feel targeted with our justice system. Look what he said in "Time" magazine. If I had been told to get out of the street as a teenager, there would have been a distinct possibility that I might have smarted off. But I wouldn't have expected to be shot. What is up with Rand Paul? Is he an outlier on the republican side? Or are republicans taking a new approach? I have been very pleased not just with him but with a number of voices within the party that have taken a similar tack in recent months. It's not just Rand Paul. You also had senator mike lee, from Utah, who, in bipartisan effort with senators dick Durbin and pat Leahy put forward changes for sentencing reform. We're seeing bipartisan effort. This is one of those areas where you have the left and the tea party right coming together to support changes to policy that can hopefully fix our justice system. On Ferguson, does Paul represent where republicans are? Not necessarily. This is not the first time he's talked about this. He's doing speeches on sentencing reform. Trying to go into the heart of black communities. This is an important message. If you have a republican candidate, republican nominee, perhaps, talking about this, it is significant to the party. I'm not sure the base of the party is with him. But he's leading the way. We're seeing this liberal, libertarians coming together on this. We'll be back in 30 seconds.
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