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New York City Sees Significant Rise In Violent Crime; U.S. Records Lowest Number Of New COVID Cases In Seven Months; Kentucky Derby Winner Tested Positive For Elevated Levels Of Betamethasone. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired May 9, 2021 - 15:00   ET


FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN HOST: Hello again, thank you so much for joining me this Sunday, Mother's Day. I'm Fredricka Whitfield.

All right, we begin this hour with a weekend of violence in several American cities. A shooting erupting in one of the most recognizable places in the world, Times Square.


WHITFIELD: Three victims including a four-year old girl seen in this video being carried away to safety by police. Investigators are still searching for the gunman.

But this was far from the only violence taking place across the country this weekend. A shooting at a mall near Miami on Saturday, leaving as many as five people wounded. Several suspects are now in custody there.

And then just today, a man was shot and killed by police in Massachusetts. Officers say he rammed his car right into the front doors of the police department before they opened fire.

And then in Arizona, one person was killed and at least seven others wounded when a shooting broke out at a Phoenix hotel this morning. Investigators say there were multiple shooters all involved in what they call an isolated fight.

Shootings like these that happen almost daily now that have so many asking: when will this endless cycle of violence end?

Let's start with that terrifying ordeal playing out at the crossroads of the world, Times Square. CNN's Evan McMorris-Santoro is there with more. Evan, tell us more about what we know about the circumstances, the victims -- everything?

EVAN MCMORRIS-SANTORO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fred, the victims really are just the kinds of people who are down in Time Square on a Saturday afternoon in broad daylight. This happened yesterday, right around five o'clock. Let's watch that video again.

It really is the best way of understanding what this look like. Okay, it's a crowded street, one of the most crowded streets in the city, usually. And just to put this in perspective for you, this is the corner where the theater that plays "The Lion King" on Broadway is. It is a very, very popular spot with tourists.

As you can see shots ring out, police say it was a disagreement between some people that were not involved with the ones who got shot, and three innocent bystanders were hit including that four-year-old girl who went to the hospital to get surgery on her leg where she got hit.

The other two people were a tourist from Rhode Island, who was in town to see the Statue of Liberty that was closed, so she came down to the Times Square to look around and a 43-year-old woman from New Jersey, who was also down here doing what people do in Times Square, which is you know, wander around, look at the site, look at the lights.

Police have released this image of someone they say they want to talk to in relation to this incident. They are still actively investigating it. It's just a moment that really strikes at the heart of what things can be like when you see this gun violence.

People are just standing where they should be standing out on Saturday afternoon, enjoying themselves at Times Square, when bullets ring out and hit innocent people -- Fred.

WHITFIELD: And then Evan, New York has seen crime and shootings soar, particularly in the last year. What are police saying about that?

SANTORO: Well, that's right. We're in a moment here in New York City where we are trying to get back to normal. We've been hit, obviously by the pandemic, and now we're trying to reopen and we're seeing this rise in crime. It's making a lot of people very, very nervous.

Let me show you a quick graphic and I'll explain this a little bit. Look at that number from April 2020 to April 2021, a hundred and sixty-six percent rise in gun violence and you might say to yourself, look all right, well, April 2020 was the height of the pandemic. Maybe that's not a time -- maybe that's not a great comparison.

Well, there's a way of looking at this number, which is that between January and March 30th of 2021, nearly 300 shootings in New York City. The police are absolutely frustrated by this.

They blame politicians. They say that basically, people in this city need to wake up, politicians need to wake up and change some policies to get at this gun violence and try to prevent it.

Here is the Commissioner of Police from the press conference last night just after the shooting here in Times Square.


COMMISSIONER DERMOT SHEA, NEW YORK POLICE: How many more kids do we need to be shot before we realize that bad policies have consequences? And we need action and we need policies regarding laws to have consequences.

(END VIDEO CLIP) SANTORO: So look, as I mentioned, just about 24 hours after that

shooting, things are pretty much back to normal here in Times Square, rain is on its way, so things are emptying out.

But there's a fear that this shooting could have a long term impact on this city's reopening and on New York getting back to normal -- Fred.

WHITFIELD: All right, Evan McMorris-Santoro, thank you so much for that.

All right, former F.D.A. Commissioner, Dr. Scott Gottlieb says the risk of coronavirus spread has been reduced substantially here in the United States. With more than a third of the population now fully vaccinated, Dr. Gottlieb believes it is time for some places to start lifting indoor mask requirements.

Dr. Anthony Fauci agrees, adding that the U.S. can avoid a future case surge if the vaccination goals are met.


DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: The fact that we have vaccines right now, Chuck, is really a game changer. I mean, if we get -- which we will -- to the goals that the President has established, namely, if we get 70 percent of the people vaccinated by the Fourth of July, maybe one single dose, and even more thereafter, you may see blips, but if we handle them well, it is unlikely that you'll see the kind of surge that we saw in the late fall and the early winter.



WHITFIELD: All right, despite the push to get more shots in arms, the vaccination rate has dropped by more than 30 percent in the U.S. over the last two weeks. President Biden worked to reassure skeptical Americans yesterday.


JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You know, we can't let up now. The vaccines are safe. I promise you, they're safe. They work.

Everybody in America, 16 years old and older is now eligible to get vaccinated for free now.


WHITFIELD: All right. Joining me now to discuss is Dr. Zeke Emanuel, a former Obama White House health policy adviser. He's also the author of the book, "Which Country has the World's Best Healthcare?"

Dr. Emanuel, so good to see you.

DR. ZEKE EMANUEL, FORMER OBAMA WHITE HOUSE HEALTH POLICY ADVISER: Nice to be here with you, Fred. Thank you for having me.

WHITFIELD: So I've read that -- I've read that Netherlands is the answer to your title. But we still have to read the book to find out why. Why the Netherlands is doing it right?

All right, so talk to me about your thoughts. Do you believe mask restrictions ought to be lifted everywhere? Are we there yet?

EMANUEL: Well, we're not there yet. With a third of the population vaccinated, we're not quite there. You look at other countries like Israel, you're really pushing to over 50 percent when you can really feel like normalcy has arrived and returned.

With only a third of the population fully vaccinated, I don't think we're quite -- can be quite comfortable, and then also in other areas where they haven't gotten a lot of vaccine, where the vaccine hesitancy is a lot higher, it should be slower, because you don't have as many people vaccinated. But I think we're moving in the right direction.

What worries me is what you mentioned, the drop in the number of people getting vaccinated.

WHITFIELD: Why do you think that is, by the way? What's your theory?

EMANUEL: Well, I think we got this big surge of people who are very eager to get it like myself, and really want that vaccine and want that protection. And then I think there are probably two groups waiting behind. One is the never vaxxers, something like 20 percent of the population, which is unfortunate.

And then there are the people where it is not convenient, I don't know if I want to take a day off of work when I get sick because of the vaccine; if I get sick because of the vaccine, you know, people have sort of mouthing the line. Well, it we need more proof it was rushed through.

Let me just say to the people listening, over 1.2 billion doses have been delivered around the world. We have people now out more than six months from being vaccinated. We know a fair amount about this vaccine. We don't know everything, but we do know a lot.

And this is very safe, certainly much safer than COVID and it is the kind of thing that you do for yourself, so that you can get back to normal, you can have that sort of burden off you. You do it for your family, you do it for your community.

And this idea that it was rushed through or that we don't know how safe it is, we have enough data and it wasn't rushed through. It was done quickly, but very, very thoroughly in the usual manner of careful examination of whether this thing is safe and whether it works.

WHITFIELD: And he just wrote a piece in "The Wall Street Journal" really emphasizing that, you know, we're living in a global world, right? I mean, calling on the U.S. to begin exporting the Pfizer and Moderna and the Johnson & Johnson vaccines right now saying that, "Stopping outbreaks elsewhere would also serve U.S. interests. Uncontrolled spread of the virus breeds variants, which can come to the U.S." I mean, after all, isn't it everywhere because people are everywhere? People travel.

EMANUEL: Fred, you're the expert. You've just summarized the argument perfectly.

You know, the fact is that we do have a vaccine anywhere would be a problem. I'm not sure why there's an echo. But --

WHITFIELD: I can hear you okay.

EMANUEL: Well, the fact is that we do have to prevent outbreaks in other places, especially Latin America. We have 65 million doses waiting for American. We have spare doses that we can send overseas and help other people in other places in the world that are experiencing severe COVID.

WHITFIELD: Thank you, Dr. Zeke Emanuel for hanging in there. I know we got a little audio problem. It did just crop up, but we heard you loud and clear, even though it's been difficult for you to perhaps hear us. Thank you so much. Good to see you.

EMANUEL: Thank you. Take care.

WHITFIELD: All right. Well, between the looming eviction crisis and the still struggling U.S. economy, the COVID pandemic has underscored the importance of organizations who help America's most vulnerable.

And on this Mother's Day, the nonprofit, Freedom and Fashion wants to make sure mothers in women's shelters are not forgotten.

The group has spent the weekend delivering gift bags to shelters and homes in Southern California. CNN's Paul Vercammen joins me now from one of the stops in Pasadena.

So Paul, what's going on?

PAUL VERCAMMEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: In just a few moments, Laverne Delgado is going to deliver one of her gift bags filled with these great personal care products for women and other things, but let me just show you what the reaction has been because when we were at Alexandria House in Los Angeles the other day, Mimi and others got their bags and these moms are just euphoric to receive a gift, many of them had been in shelters or were homeless. Let's listen to what she had to say after getting her bag


MIMI BANGU, SINGLE MOTHER: To be a single mother of three kids, and you do everything by yourself. So to get this treat, she is amazing. It is like, we don't get this often. You know, I like gold -- and to have these on Mother's Day, whoo, it made my day.

(END VIDEO CLIP) VERCAMMEN: Mimi refer to the gold because gold is her favorite color.

Now, we're going to try something live, Fred, brace yourself. Laverne Delgado is here right now as we speak, and she's going to deliver yet another one of her bags. What inspired you to do this?

LAVERNE DELGADO, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, FREEDOM AND FASHION: Well, being a mother is really hard. I'm not one, but I appreciate them and I'm a survivor as well. So I just want to bless all the women who are working so hard, especially during a pandemic to bring themselves and kids out and through this crisis.

VERCAMMEN: We'll tell them more of your story while you go ahead and knock.

So what she had told us is, she was both a sexual assault survivor and a domestic violence survivor. And she estimates that she is going to drop off more than 700 of these bags this Mother's Day weekend.

This is all Freedom and Fashion. And many of these, as I said are personal care products. But -- someone is going to open the door here.

DELGADO: Hello, Happy Mother's Day. Give me some elbow. How are you?


DELGADO: This is your Mother's Day bag. We just heard about you and your story and just how beautiful you and your children are -- you and your babies. Now, this is from Freedom and Fashion and our friends at T3 Micro and Be Social. And if you want to open it, you can now or later, but we just want to appreciate you this Mother's Day.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you so much. I really appreciate that.

DELGADO: Yes. Check it out. I want to know if you like if you it -- if like this stuff.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh my gosh. Thank you so much.

DELGADO: Here is a straightener and a brush and then you got the whole -- you got the whole collection of Kylie in here.


DELGADO: Yes, so --

VERCAMMEN: We'll let Laverne continue to show that off. Happy Mother's Day to both of you.

Well, there you have it. This is a continuing effort. As Laverne crisscrosses Los Angeles, delivering all that goodwill.

Reporting from Pasadena, Paul Vercammen.

WHITFIELD: I love it.

VERCAMMEN: Now back to you WHITFIELD: All that stuff to get dolled up and we all love that so --

and I'm feeling the love for the ladies who are getting to feel the love there. That's so nice.

Paul Vercammen, thank you so much.

All right, and then there is drama at the derby. The winning horse from last week's race at Churchill Downs is now facing possible disqualification after a blood test showed too much of an anti- inflammatory drug, the drug that is legal, but in certain quantities.

Famed trainer Bob Baffert is fighting back.

And the House is officially divided. Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy confirms he is supporting Congresswoman Stefanik over Liz Cheney in a leadership contest.



WHITFIELD: All right, a shocking day in the sports world. The winner of last weekend's Kentucky Derby is now being accused of cheating.

Race officials say Medina Spirit tested positive for an elevated level of a drug that could give him an unfair edge. The horse's trainer says test results show the colt had more than twice the legal limit of the drug, which is an anti-inflammatory after the race.

That trainer now vowing to appeal those results and fight back against the allegations.

CNN Carolyn Manno joining us with more on this. Carolyn, help us understand how this could happen.

CAROLYN MANNO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fred, good afternoon to you. I mean testing is something that Churchill Downs takes very seriously the likelihood that a trainer would come in and try to use some kind of performance enhancing substance in a race as prestigious as a Kentucky Derby is probably pretty low.

But like you mentioned, what we're talking about here is a regulated, commonly used anti-inflammatory drug, essentially a corticosteroid and what it does is reduce joint inflammation in horses. And of course, when it is misused, it can lead to problems. It can mask a lot of problems.

The way that Bob Baffert described it to me when I spoke to him a short time ago, he said, look, horses don't live in bubbles, they get exposed to a variety of substances. But he still maintains that he did not administer this drug to the Kentucky Derby winner and that he does not know of anyone who administered this drug to the Kentucky Derby winner.

He said he is frustrated, disappointed. He plans on fighting this. There is going to be additional testing. He has requested DNA testing to try to get some more answers here. And he spoke with the public earlier this afternoon. I want to play a little bit of that for you.


BOB BAFFERT, MEDINA SPIRIT'S TRAINER: It's disturbing. It's an injustice to the horse. I don't know what's going on in racing right now, but there's something not right and I don't feel embarrassed, I feel like I was wronged.

I do not feel safe to train and it is getting worse. How do I, you know, move forward from here, knowing that something like this can happen? And it is just -- it is a complete injustice. And -- but we're going to -- I'm going to fight it tooth and nail.


MANNO: And Fred, what Baffert is alluding to there is what he feels is an endemic problem within the sport that there needs to be more regulation here and there is more regulation coming from the federal level. A bill was passed in order to try to get a little bit more regulation with some of these commonly used drugs.

But he told me when we spoke that, you know, he welcomes a higher standard, but feels like he endures more scrutiny than most and he has won seven, Kentucky Derbies. There are a lot of people you know, who look at his success and are quick to point a finger, but there is going to be additional testing and until that testing comes back, his horse who went wire to wire is the one who is the Kentucky Derby winner.

We're just going to have to see if in fact, there's something that's going to prevent that moving forward.

WHITFIELD: All right, Carolyn Manno, thank you so much for that.

All right, coming up in the CNN NEWSROOM, Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger compares his party to the Titanic as the fight over Liz Cheney's leadership position gets ugly. More on the party in peril, next.



WHITFIELD: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is throwing his support behind Elise Stefanik to replace Liz Cheney for the number three Republican leadership post.

House Republicans are poised to vote this week on whether Cheney should lose her leadership role in the party. Stefanik has a more moderate voting record than Cheney, but the Wyoming lawmaker's criticism of former President Trump and Cheney's attacks on Republicans who push false claims about election fraud have created friction with many of her G.O.P. colleagues.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA): Everyone in the leadership serves at the

pleasure of the conference. And as you know, there's a lot at stake, Democrats are destroying this nation.

To defeat Nancy Pelosi and the socialist agenda, we need to be united and that starts with leadership. That's why we will have a vote next week and we want to be united in looking moving forward.

MARIA BARTIROMO, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: Do you support Elise Stefanik for that job?

MCCARTHY: Yes, I do.


WHITFIELD: All right, Max Boot is a columnist for "The Washington Post" and a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He's also the author of "The Corrosion of Conservatism: Why I Left the Right." Amanda Carpenter is a CNN political commentator and a political columnist for "The Bulwark." She's the author of "Gaslighting America: Why we Love it when Trump Lies to Us."

Good to see both of you.

All right, so Amanda, you first, you know, McCarthy was asked and didn't even answer the question about whether the votes are there to replace Cheney. So, is this a done deal for Cheney? And what does all of this say about the direction of the G.O.P.?

AMANDA CARPENTER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, let me make the strange case for optimism in this scenario. Never before have we had a person in a leadership position willing to force the conversation about the costs of Trump's lies and how it led to now the insurrection.

And so I think Cheney is poised to lose this post, but what makes this different is that we have someone who is willing to stand and fight. Before we had people who disagreed with Trump, who just walked away. You know, Paul Ryan left his speakership. You had senators like Bob Corker and Jeff Flake, just decide they're not going to run again, and Cheney is digging her heels in.

And so, what people like me, never Trump Republicans, people who are disillusioned after seeing what happened on January 6th need someone to rally around, and I think Liz Cheney can be that person.

WHITFIELD: You think that she has support and perhaps just in terms of elected Republicans, and that they're just for now being silent?

CARPENTER: No, I mean, I don't think she is going to keep her position. But nationwide, Republicans have been losing people. I mean, look, you had people who voted for Trump in 2020, like Adam Kinzinger, like Michael Wood, who ran down in Texas, who, after seeing what happened on January 6th, something broke. They said, "We cannot do this again." And that is where the majority of the conference was, immediately

after January 6th, even you had Lindsey Graham standing on the Senate floor saying --

WHITFIELD: And then he seemed like he had amnesia though.

CARPENTER: Yes, I'm out. And Kevin McCarthy was saying Donald Trump bears responsibility for this. So even his strongest supporters know this in their hearts, and so we're going to have this conversation.

But what Kevin McCarthy is doing now, by installing Elise Stefanik into leadership, he is saying he wants the party to tether itself to Trump and his lies. There are many people who don't agree with that direction, and so let this play out.

WHITFIELD: Max, listen to what Republican Congressman Jim Banks said this morning about why Cheney has to be removed from the G.O.P. leadership.


REP. JIM BANKS (R-IN): The reason, Chris, that you and I are talking about Liz Cheney on this important program on a Sunday morning, is exactly -- the exact evidence that she has failed in her mission as the chief spokesperson of our party. We shouldn't be talking about Liz Cheney, we should be talking about pushing back against the radical Biden agenda and this is all a distraction from our ability to be able to do that.


WHITFIELD: So Max, she is the distraction, Trump is not the distraction or hasn't been the distraction?

MAX BOOT, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Well, Republicans are clearly living in this upside-down world where lies become the truth and that's essentially the reality they have embraced over the last four- plus years. And, you know, I wish I could be as optimistic as Amanda.

But I just think what's happened in the last four years is that the Republican Party has been increasingly hostile to the truth and in fact, to democracy itself, where Donald Trump has steadily eroded all of the principles that the Republican Party used to stand for and that's why I can no longer be a Republican.

I just think that you know, people like -- you know, I applaud people like Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger, and others who are fighting for the Republican Party. But I think at this point, it's a lost cause.

I mean, 70 percent of Republicans in a recent CNN poll said that Joe Biden was not legitimately elected as President. It's clear that the vast majority of the party is where Donald Trump is, which is denying reality, which is attacking the very foundations of our democracy and that's sad for me to see, but I think that's just the reality.

[15:30:37] BOOT: And the fact that Liz Cheney is being toppled for telling the

truth and Elise Stefanik is being installed for lying, I think that's just a snapshot of where the Republican Party is, which is that it is a threat right now to American democracy and it is getting worse.

WHITFIELD: So Amanda, is it that those 70 percent that Max is talking about, are they just trying to please Trump? Or is he simply, I guess, the instrument that these Republicans are using in order to keep their own political lives alive?

CARPENTER: Well, it's a little bit of a chicken or the egg thing. What I think it comes down to is that no one has challenged Trump's message. I mean, essentially, what we saw after the election was a bunch of leadership Republicans laying back and saying, let Donald Trump have his day and day and day and day in court.

And somehow they thought once that would be settled, he would go away magically. That just is never going to happen. And so there is no reset and what I am hopeful about that, if Liz Cheney does get cut from leadership, by then she'll be free to pursue the January 6th Commission.

She made a strong case for this in her op-ed. I think it would be a really good thing for democracy and restoring trust in institutions if a number of Cheney aligned Republicans would work with the Democrats to get this passed.

There is no reason the January 6th Commission cannot be passed when Democrats control both Houses and Joe Biden is President, and if you look at the language that she laid out in that, she said, specifically, no Member of Congress should be on this Commission.

And so you get it out of Congress and then you get a number of competent, smart professional Republicans who can lay the record out with the facts about what led to January 6th, and that would be a good baseline for everyone to get on board with.

WHITFIELD: So listen to Maryland Governor, Larry Hogan. This is what he had to say this morning.


GOV. LARRY HOGAN (R-MD): It just bothers me that you have to swear fealty to the Dear Leader, or you get kicked out of the party. It just doesn't make any sense.

Well, it's sort of a circular firing squad where we're just attacking members of her own party, instead of focusing on solving problems or standing up and having an argument that we can debate the Democrats on some of the things that the Biden administration is pushing through.


WHITFIELD: So Max, I'd love your thoughts on that, you know, and it's been a few years since you famously made waves with your book, "The Corrosion of Conservatism." Many of the things that you criticize then are still happening to the party today.

BOOT: It's getting worse and worse, and as we are seeing with Liz Cheney, anybody who stands up to Trump is getting purged from the party.

Now, what's interesting here, Fred, is that there was a "Washington Post" story yesterday on Liz Cheney and the fact that she found out that the National Republican Congressional Committee was actually withholding polling from its own congressional members, which shows that Donald Trump is viewed very unfavorably, even in the core districts around the country that the Republican Party has to contest.

So there is no question that the course they are on is not a winning one in the country at large, because Trump is so unpopular, and rightfully so. He is one of the worst Presidents in our history. But the problem is that all these Republican members in the House, they don't care about general elections, they only care about primary elections, because most of them are in gerrymandered seats. The only way they can lose is if there is somebody running to their right, who is endorsed by Trump and so they're terrified of standing up to Trump.

So what they're doing is not in the interest of the country. It's not in the interest of the Republican Party, but is in their narrow self- interest because they are basically trying to protect their seats because they are cowards. They will not stand up for the country. They will not stand up for the Constitution, because all they care about is avoiding a primary challenger from the right.

WHITFIELD: Power over policy is what I'm hearing you say. All right, Max Boot, Amanda Carpenter, thank you so much.

BOOT: Thank you.

WHITFIELD: All right, we are all familiar with the racist legacy of Jim Crow, but what about Jim Code? We'll talk to W. Kamau Bell about how racial bias informs technology and preview of the next episode of "United Shades of America," next.



WHITFIELD: W Kamau Bell is back tonight with an all new episode of "United Shades of America" and he is looking at the role race plays in the STEM field, STEM standing for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Here's a preview.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Welcome to your digital world.

W. KAMAU BELL, CNN HOST, "UNITED SHADES OF AMERICA": It looks like if I live here, I'm single. I got some tech money because there's a lot of space.

Oh, my hand -- I've got a white hand. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There you go. We're going to talk about why do you

have white hands as a black man in the whole space we are, right?

BELL: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is the default that the company has. If you don't press anything, give us any information, this is who we presume to be. And we're saying this is okay.

We've all lived and understand the premise of Jim Crow, but I think the new idea is this thing called Jim Code. With implicit bias, we are creating technology that is going to disenfranchise people, particularly black and brown people who simply aren't in the room when these things were being thought of.



WHITFIELD: The host of "United Shades" W. Kamau Bell joining us right now. Sometimes, Kamau, I think it's your expressions that are better than any words. They say so much.

All right, so let's talk. There we go. There it is right there. All right, so you call racism and lack of representation in STEM, one of the biggest civil rights issues facing us today, tell us why. You said, you've got one example.

BELL: Let me be clear that something that is being talked about by lots of black people in STEM who are talking about the idea, when you look at January 6th, a lot of the people who showed up to attack the White House or to attack the Senate on January 6th were people who had been given bad information by the algorithms in the internet.

And when you look at the number of black people who have STEM jobs or in tech jobs, it's really low. And so what you're seeing is that the system is set up that black people can't get into that industry and the algorithm isn't about truth, it is about engagement.

WHITFIELD: So you -- we just ran that clip, and we heard that word -- words -- Jim Code. So how do the algorithms that run so much of our lives kind of reinforce this implicit bias?

BELL: First of all, I'd encourage people to read "Race after Technology," Ruha Benjamin's book about this. But it's the idea that like -- just like our cities are designed and the way in which your city looks, you can tell where the poor black people live, and where the rich white people live. The internet streets are the same way, the way in which the internet drives your attention, what it drives you to.

A lot of times, those codes are created by white people who, again, they want your attention. They're not trying to get you to truth, they're not trying to help you. They just want your engagement and that's not a positive thing.

WHITFIELD: What did you uncover about the efforts to create more opportunities for people of color, particularly in STEM?

BELL: Well, I mean, you look at like we look at the last election, the election of Joe Biden and we were in Atlanta for this episode. And so you also talk about -- we talked about the two senators we got out of Georgia, that all happened because of the new Georgia project and Insay Ufa (ph) who we talked to tonight, where it's black people going, I need to get in these STEM streets, I need to learn about this so that I can actually counter all the negative and bad information that is out there.

So there are a lot of black folks who are engaged in changing this reality, but as we say in the show, this is a recruitment video to get more black people into this.

WHITFIELD: And we look forward to seeing a more Insay (ph). She has been a guest with us many times.

W. Kamau Bell, thank you so much as have you, thank goodness, okay. I get it.

Don't miss "United Shades of America" tonight at 10 right here on CNN. I think our friend John Collins is going to really appreciate that tap, too.

All right, we'll be right back.



WHITFIELD: Pope Francis today calling for an end to the violence in Jerusalem after a second night of protests.

At least 100 Palestinians were injured in clashes with Israeli Police Forces in Jerusalem. A Palestinian aid organization says demonstrators were hit with rubber bullets and stun grenades at several locations across the city.

Palestinians are protesting the potential eviction of some families in East Jerusalem.

Officials in Afghanistan now say at least 50 people were killed and more than a hundred others injured after an explosion near a girls high school in Kabul. Officials say the blast was caused by a car bomb. Two other IEDs exploded after the initial bomb went off.

Still, no one has claimed responsibility. A Taliban spokesman says the group denies any involvement.

The U.S. is in the process of pulling its remaining troops out of Afghanistan to meet a September 11th deadline this year.

Meantime, days of guessing and uncertainty are over. The out of control 20-ton Chinese rocket plummeted back to Earth overnight. U.S. Space Command confirmed the rocket reentered the Earth's atmosphere and likely plunged into the Indian Ocean. Images were posted across social media including these showing parts

of the rocket passing over the Arabian Peninsula. Most of it likely burned up as it passed through the atmosphere.

NASA is criticizing China for its handling of the rocket's crash back to Earth.

Some senior citizens in Southern California are getting their shot in the arm from firefighters going beyond the call of duty.

CNN's Stephanie Elam has the story.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You ready for your vaccine?

STEPHANIE ELAM, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): For Lili Shaw --


ELAM (voice over): Vaccination means freedom.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is that your IV in there?

ELAM (voice over): Now, thanks to her local firefighters, that's about to change.

STEPHEN ELLIOTT, FIREFIGHTER AND PARAMEDIC, GLENDALE, CALIFORNIA FIRE DEPARTMENT: The citizens we serve are like our family and just seeing the toll it took them was pretty tough.

ELAM (voice over): Glendale Fire Department in partnership with Dignity Health Glendale Memorial Hospital is offering free at home vaccinations for residents 65 and older who may need help.

CHIEF SILVIO LANZAS, GLENDALE FIRE DEPARTMENT: It makes sense to use the Johnson & Johnson for this effort. We come to your home one time. Each team has three people, two Fire Department employees and then a nurse.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's going to be a little shot here.

ELAM (voice over): Finding innovative ways to care for their community is what Glendale Fire does.

Last year, just as the pandemic began --

LANZAS: Food, medications or other special needs --

ELAM (voice over): The Chief asked the city's senior citizens to stay at home and let the firefighters do their grocery shopping.

LANZAS: We made a connection with them. We want to get vaccine into them and get them back to do all those type of things to be somewhat normal.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The vaccines are going to be in transport cases.

ELAM (voice over): An important step for a city slammed by the pandemic.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is something I've never seen in my career.

CAPTAIN SCOTT MOHLENBROK, GLENDALE, CALIFORNIA FIRE DEPARTMENT: Emotionally, it was extremely difficult call after call after call going on patients that were really sick.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He has been waiting to get his vaccine.

ELAM (voice over): With his shot in his arm, 69-year-old Nelson Navarro feel safer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For the City of Glendale to actually come here, it is a huge, huge service for us.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's it. You're all done.

SHAW: You're kidding.

ELAM (on camera): Now that you've got your shot, what is Miss Lily going to do?

SHAW: I wish I could drive to Malibu.

ELAM (voice over): Seeing people pass the pandemic is the payoff for the firefighters.

MOHLENBROK: Really enjoyable for my heart and for my head to be in the front of it.

LANZAS: It's at the core of what we do: saving people's lives and this vaccine is saving people's lives.

ELAM (voice over): Giving residents their freedom back, one house call and one shot at a time.

Stephanie Elam, CNN, Glendale, California.




WHITFIELD: All right. Hello again, everyone. Thank you so much for joining me on this Mother's Day.

Happy Mother's Day, everybody. I'm Fredricka Whitfield. President Biden has a big week ahead of him as he looks to push his

ambitious infrastructure bill. He will meet with bipartisan congressional leaders and separately key Republican senators over the next few days.

At $2 trillion, it won't be an easy sell, but the President will make the case that the moment calls for big investments in the future.

Arlette Saenz is at the White House for us. Arlette, how is the President preparing for this big pitch for us legislation?

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fred, President Biden is spending Mother's Day at Camp David, but he is gearing up for a pair of critical meetings this week as he is looking to push his infrastructure proposal and get some bipartisan sign on.

And the President has said that inaction on infrastructure just is not acceptable.

His first key meeting will take place on Wednesday when he hosts the so-called "Big Four." That's the congressional leaders from both parties here at the White House, the first time the President will be meeting with them.

They'll discuss a range of issues including the economy and COVID-19, but that meeting comes after Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has said that his focus is 100 percent on stopping this administration.