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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Democrats Threatened; Doctor Shortage; Obesity Aging Kids Prematurely; Marked Mayor of Juarez
Aired March 24, 2010 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: We've got breaking news tonight on Democratic security concerns, new information tonight about one of the main reasons why Democratic lawmakers have been talking to Capitol police and the FBI and why they met today to talk about their safety since voting to pass health care reform.
Now, we want to be very careful reporting all of this tonight and making sure not to raise the temperature because, frankly, it's simply too hot as it is. In just the last few days we've seen racist and bigoted slurs hurled over the issue, we've seen lawmakers spat on and windows broken and death threats made.
Dana Bash has the breaking news tonight about what Democrats have been discussing behind closed doors -- Dana.
DANA BASH, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, I'm told that in a Democratic meeting today about those safety concerns, a House member specifically talked about this map. Check it out. It's on Sarah Palin's Facebook page. It has the top House Democratic political targets but they're illustrated with rifle crosshairs.
And when a member raised it in that meeting there was an audible groan, I'm told. And it's just one example how Democrats argue political rhetoric and imagery over health care has crossed the line. And they have now become real targets from citizens who are opposing them.
BASH (voice-over): It was anti-abortion Democrat Bart Stupak's 11th-hour deal that gave House Democrats the votes to pass health care. Listen to some messages on his voice mail.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stupak, you are a lowlife baby murderer and scumbag pile of semen crap. You are cowardly punk Stupak.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Think about this, there are millions of people across the country who wish you ill. And all of those thoughts projected on you will materialize into something that's not very good for you.
BASH: And he's gotten faxes like these, images of a noose and Nazi SS insignia. Stupak is hardly the only Democrat being threatened; vandalism at the Arizona office of Gabby Giffords and the New York office of House Rules Chairwoman Louise Slaughter.
REP. LOUISE SLAUGHTER (D-NY), HOUSE RULES CHAIRWOMAN: Someone hurled a brick through the window of my district office in the dark of night.
BASH: Whoever threw that brick is a mystery but one person encouraging such behavior is known. Mark Vanderboegh is a popular right-wing extremist who wrote on his blog last week, "So if you wish to send a message that Pelosi and her party cannot fail to hear, break their windows, break them now. Break them and run to break again."
During a radio interview yesterday, Mr. Vanderboegh urged further action.
MARK VANDERBOEGH, RIGHT-WING EXTREMIST: I'm advocating broken windows. I'm advocating I suppose, vandalism.
BASH: House Democrats are now so concerned about security, leaders called an emergency closed-door meeting with the FBI, Capitol police and sergeant-at-arms.
Do you feel that your members are really at risk in terms of their security?
REP. STENY HOYER (D), MARYLAND: Yes. I think we've had very serious incidences that have occurred over the last 48, 72 hours.
BASH: So how are you dealing with that? What actions are you taking?
HOYER: Well, we have the -- the Capitol police just briefed members. If they are in any way suspicious or fearful or see actions occurring, to report those immediately and the Capitol police will respond and try to determine whether crimes have been committed.
REP. STEVE DRIEHAUS, (D) OHIO: My wife and kids are at home. They're organizing protests in front of my house. We're getting death threats on the telephone.
BASH: Freshman Democrat Steve Driehaus also voted yes on health care. Before he did, the House Minority Leader, John Boehner warned, he may be a dead man.
Driehaus blames the GOP leader for stirring up some of the threats against him.
DRIEHAUS: They're engaged in rhetoric that goes way beyond the pale of what's responsible. They're inciting behavior and I think they should be held responsible for that.
BASH: Boehner declined our interview request to directly respond and instead, issued a statement. "I know many Americans are angry over this health care bill and that Washington Democrats just aren't listening. But, as I've said, violence and threats are unacceptable." He went on to say, "Go volunteer the political campaign, make your voice heard but let's do it the right way."
Still, Democrats are blaming Republican lawmakers for egging protesters on, maybe over the line like this over the weekend when Republican Steve King held up a poster of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, gave her a thumbs-down and made a slapping motion across her face. We asked King about that.
(on camera): There was a moment that we have seen you were up there right on that balcony up there with a picture of the House Speaker slapping it.
REP. MARK KING (R), IOWA: Well, that would be an exaggeration. But this is a melodrama. Keep in mind, this is a melodrama.
BASH: Can you tell me -- tell me what your goal was with what you did?
KING: My goal is to inspire people to stand up for the Constitution, to stand up for fiscal responsibility and stand up for the rule of law.
BASH: King walked away before we could get him to fully explain what he meant to do but he did say he condemns any threats of violence.
COOPER: Well, Dana joins us now along with John Avlon, senior political writer with the DailyBeast.com and author of "Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America".
Dana, it's interesting, talking to this -- you're talking to Steve King, I mean, he clearly was slapping -- right or wrong or whether it's justified or not -- he was clearly slapping the picture of Nancy Pelosi. And for him to say that that's an exaggeration is just simply factually incorrect.
BASH: As you could probably tell, I was a little bit stunned. And then he said, well, I haven't seen the videotape. And I started to say, well, you were there and I sort of didn't get a chance to finish that.
Look, he -- what he said, the point he was trying to make, big picture, is that he believes that there were thousands of peaceful protesters and the media are ignoring them. But what I was trying to ask him about was the fact that he is one of the Republicans that Democrats say, "Wait a minute, if our leaders are going to do things like that, what do you expect from people out there?"
I want to sort of make one other point, Anderson. We said Mark Vanderboegh is the name of the blogger, and piece's name is Mike.
COOPER: Mike. John, it's interesting, I mean, people point -- apparently on Capitol Hill they were talking -- Democrats talking behind closed doors about Sarah Palin's Facebook page to show up that -- that map with the crosshairs on it. She also tweeted something I guess in which she said that -- she said, "It takes common sense conservatives and lovers of America. Don't retreat, instead, reload. Please see my Facebook page". Clearly, she was speaking metaphorically.
JOHN AVLON, AUTHOR, "WINGNUTS": Yes.
COOPER: And Republicans who see this and supporters of Sarah Palin who see this will say, well, look, this is Democrats overreacting, these are just crosshairs; it's symbolic on districts.
AVLON: Yes and that may have been a credible explanation or an excuse before today when we've seen 10 Democrats say they received death threats in the last day alone. At this point having crosshairs on a political map seems to me not only an act of poor judgment but I think she should be called on to take those crosshairs off. If she does not it's a sign of seriously insufficient judgment.
This is -- the politics of incitement of what we are dealing with. And this is in evidence of that at this moment.
COOPER: And it's interesting now, Dana, you have some Republicans saying that Democrats are actually you know, kind of fanning the flames over this. Where are they pointing to for that?
BASH: Well, look, Democrats were so blunt today that they believe that Republicans simply are not doing enough, especially the leadership to try to tamp down on some of this stuff. And the House Majority Whip, Jim Clyburn, he actually said on another network, that he believes that if people aren't condemning these actions, then you're aiding and abetting this kind of terrorism.
Well, Republicans said, "Wait a minute, if you're going to yell at us for using a rhetoric that's too hot, well, why are you calling us terrorists?" And I've talked to an aide to Clyburn, who said, look, that he called the protests over the weekend akin to terrorism and that speaks for itself.
But it just goes to show you that things are being ratcheted up. I can tell you, that there was actually -- there were actually closed door -- close door conversations Anderson, between Democratic leaders and Republican leaders in the hopes of maybe putting out a joint statement. That didn't happen today.
COOPER: We're going to have more from Dana and from John Avlon in just a moment. We're going to continue the conversation after the break.
Also, what's happening online; join the live chat at AC360.com. Talk to viewers watching right now around the world.
Also tonight, "Keeping them Honest", a legitimate problem we turned up that could leave seniors without their favorite doctors. Democrats promised to fix it. It's not in the new health care reform law and the question is why? And whether both parties are dodging responsibility on this one; we're "Keeping them Honest". And later, 360 M.D, Sanjay Gupta, on the toll obesity can have on a child's body and why it could cut their lives short; a 12-year-old boy more than 250 pounds.
COOPER: All right, continuing our breaking news, word that a Sarah Palin Facebook posting a map of Congressional districts with rifle crosshairs -- rifle scope crosshairs were taken up -- were taken up by the House Democratic leadership is one more threat in the wake of their vote on health care reform.
Now, as we've mentioned at the top Ms. Palin tweeting as well, quote, "Common sense conservatives and lovers of America, 'don't retreat, instead reload'". The tweet part of a string of headlines over the past few days that have outraged a lot of Democrats.
Back now with Dana Bash and John Avlon, author of "Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America". You've talked in recent months to this guy that Dana mentioned, Mike Vanderboegh.
And I want to just read some of what he has said on his blog, because it's pretty -- I mean, it's pretty stunning stuff. He says, "If we do a proper job, if we break the windows of hundreds, thousands of Democratic Party headquarters across this country, we might just wake up enough of them to make defending themselves at the muzzle of a rifle unnecessary". He's claiming credit for some folks throwing bricks through windows of Democratic offices.
AVLON: That's right and just subsequently we've seen four different instances of bricks and broken windows at Democratic county headquarters or Congressman's district offices. This is clearly an incitement. Some people have taken up that mantle. And Vanderboegh is part of this growing movement we've seen in America which I call the hate-riot movement. But it's a rebirth of the militia movements from the 1990s. We've seen a 300 percent increase in the first year of the Obama administration. And he is a leader in that movement.
COOPER: And he was in the militia movement back in the 90s?
AVLON: That's exactly right, he was a leader. It -- when I spoke to him it's an unexpected story. He was a '60s leftist, who became a radicalized second amendment activist and then a militia leader. And now he was one of the co-founders of this group call the Three Percenters, which is one of these groups that are out there.
But through his blog, he's really been inciting and appears to be successfully inciting acts of violence that we've only just begun to see and he has a larger agenda than just these broken windows.
COOPER: I want to play a clip of him warning people about a violent confrontation with the government. Let's listen.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
VANDERBOEGH: Folks you need to be getting ready. You need to be forming neighborhood defense organizations. You need to be looking to your larders. You need to be looking to your -- to your arsenals. You need to be looking to your physical fitness. You need to be looking toward your neighbors and who can you count on, and how do you -- how do you build small fire teams and things like that. These are the things that you must be doing now because events will overtake you if you do not.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
COOPER: I mean, these are kind of -- there are a lot of blowhards out there and this guy sounds like one of those blowhards who normally we just kind of like dismiss as an armchair warrior, but clearly, he seems to be taking credit for some of this violence.
AVLON: That's right. And you know when blowhards meet with paramilitary organizations which are what these hate-riot groups are, all of a sudden you've got real problems. That's the language of a survivalist school.
These folks -- he's been telling on survive -- his folks on his blog for some time now to get ready for what he called TBD, the big die-off. He's been saying we're going to be -- heading towards a real conflict with the government.
These are the folks who've been predicting martial law. And they see themselves as patriots resisting the federal government. But they have been predicting a violent conflict with the government over the whole first year of the Obama administration.
And now he seems to be getting some folks to begin act out in small ways. He sees himself as a patriot trying to stop a civil war but it's indicative of these groups who want to defend the Constitution by doing violence to it.
COOPER: Dana, we were talking earlier about security on Capitol Hill. And not just concern there, though, Members of Congress are about to go home for spring recess and that's where we've been seeing a lot of these incidents.
BASH: That's right, Steve Driehaus that you saw in the piece earlier, he is a freshman from Ohio. He told me that not only have there been protests already at his house in Ohio, that there is actually a protest planned specifically at his house, that somebody -- he's not alone in this, somebody published on a blog the home address. And he said to his wife and kids, look, you've just got to stay inside. And he said he's a little worried about it.
I actually asked Steny Hoyer, the Majority Leader about this today, you know, what are you telling these members to do? And what specifically did they hear from the security folks that they brought in to talk to them. And they just said, look, just do the best you can to protect your families, to protect your kids. And obviously if there are real incidents, you've got to report it so we can come out and help you.
COOPER: Dana Bash, I appreciate the reporting. Thanks so much. John Avlon, as well.
Up next tonight "Keeping them Honest", why starting next week, seniors might not be able to see the doctor they want to. How the health care reform law might have fixed the problem but didn't and whether Democrats broke a promise by taking it out of the bill; we're "Keeping them Honest".
And later, he's got what might just be the most dangerous job in North America. The Mayor of Juarez, Mexico, the drug war raging and he got a death threat warning he would be dead in two weeks unless he quit. Two weeks later, he is still Mayor, and we'll see how he is doing tonight.
COOPER: We're "Keeping them Honest" tonight on a huge piece of the health care system that the new reform law does not reform. Now leaving it unfixed could make it harder for millions of Americans on Medicare to find a doctor. We're going to show you why it was left out of the bill that President Obama signed yesterday.
Today the signed Executive Order reaffirming existing limits on federal funding of abortion. That of course was the price for Congressman Bart Stupak's support. Meantime, Republicans took loud aim at the new law from the well of the senate.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: You can put lipstick on a pig, Mr. President, but this is still a pig.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That's Senator John McCain trying to block the package of fixes to the main bill.
I want to take you over the wall tonight because there are some new polling information. It's really interesting. It gives you a real sense of where people stand on the health care changes.
Take a look at these numbers. Now, we showed you this USA Today/Gallup Poll yesterday: 49 percent say that passing the bill was a good idea versus 40 percent who say it was a bad idea. But let's look closer at the numbers, how they break down by age and income, because you get a very different picture.
For people earning less than $24,000 a year, there's a lot in this bill for them. So it's not surprising they like it, 65 percent to 23 percent, a 42-point margin. Then for -- the same goes for people with no coverage now, they like it, 58 percent to 29 percent. That makes sense.
Also young people, ages 18 to 34, many of whom can now stay on their parents' insurance, they also like the new law by a 27 point margin. But this is where it gets interesting, seniors, 65 and up, the opinion does a 180, only 36 percent there call the bill's passage a good thing; 54 percent say otherwise. They already have government provided Medicare, of course, in other words, they have something to lose.
So "Keeping them Honest" tonight, there is something they could in fact lose and lose it as early as next week. We're talking about access to doctors because doctors are actually going to lose federal money for treating seniors and deciding not to take Medicare patients anymore.
So that is -- if Congress doesn't do something about it soon, doctors could decide not to see them because they don't get a Medicare reimbursement. Democrats have promised to do something about it. And in fairness, both Democrats and Republicans created the problem in the first place, and they have been temporarily fixing it, kicking the can so to speak down the road avoiding accountability for about 18 years now.
But this time around, Democrats and the White House they did have a chance to fix this thing for good in the health care reform bill and critics say they blew it.
Tom Foreman tonight is "Keeping them Honest".
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Doctors who treat Medicare patients say they are facing a fiscal emergency decades in the making, a 21 percent cut in what the government pays them for that care; 21 percent. By almost all accounts, that could mean fewer doctors taking such patients and yet Democratic supporters of reform allowed that time bomb to keep ticking although "Keeping them Honest", they could have fixed it in the new health care bill.
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), HOUSE SPEAKER: The bill is passed.
FOREMAN: But they did make a promise.
PELOSI: It's not in this bill but we will have it soon.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Medicare will become law.
FOREMAN: Back in 1965, when President Johnson created Medicare for the elderly, doctors were allowed to charge pretty much whatever they thought was fair. But over time, the cost ballooned.
(on camera): So in 1992, they came up with a formula that almost every one now calls a mess, because while the cost of care has steadily risen, the amount being paid to those doctors has fallen. Time and again, Congress has approved quick payments to keep physicians from bailing out of the program all together.
But Dr. Cecil Wilson with the American Medical Association says that's like paying the interest on a credit card debt, the principle owed to those doctors keeps climbing.
DR. CECIL WILSON, AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION: Four years ago, the cuts were three to four percent; they could have fixed this with $48 billion. Now they're 21 percent, $210 billion to fix it. So each year they postpone it makes it even more difficult.
FOREMAN: The problem is that price tag, $210 billion. If that had been part of the health reform bill, it would have pushed the total tab over a trillion, pushed up the deficit and almost certainly hurt the chances for passage. And Democrats didn't want any of that.
So now, they're considering a fix before an election and with a public already nervous over spending.
PELOSI: Thank you all very much.
FOREMAN (voice-over): The House has passed a measure. But the senate, well, convincing them is one reason Dr. Wilson was in Washington.
WILSON: Both sides of the aisle, both Houses of Congress, the administration knows, everybody understands this is a problem that needs to be fixed and it's up to them.
FOREMAN (on camera): But they also know it's an expensive problem. So how confident are you that they will deal with it now?
WILSON: Well, they have to because if they don't, this program is going to fall apart.
FOREMAN (voice-over): We'll see. For now, the formula says the next big cut is coming at month's end and the doctors are in the waiting room.
Tom Foreman, CNN, Washington.
COOPER: Well, under the new health care reform law, 32 million uninsured people will now be able to get health insurance, that's the idea, right? In theory, 32 million new patients will be able to go to a doctor when they get sick.
But here is the thing, it's actually not certain that all these people will really get to see a doctor. That's because there is a serious shortage of primary care doctors across the country. It's no secret why the shortages exist, fewer new doctors are entering primary care. The question is what is driving them away?
When 360 MD, Sanjay Gupta has that story.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): They are part of American lore, the country family doctor, primary physician, making house calls, fixing whatever is broken. That version of the primary care doctor has long since faded away.
(on camera): And the thing is the modern day version may also be close behind which makes the woman you're about to meet, Nakato, an even more rare breed.
DR. NAKATO KIBUYAGA, MOREHOUSE SCHOOL OF MEDICINE: Hi. Dr. Gupta, nice to meet you.
GUPTA: Nice to meet you.
Well, part of the reason I wanted to come meet you was because you're going into primary care.
GUPTA: I guess there's fewer and fewer of you. Why aren't more of your colleagues choosing this as a profession?
KIBUYAGA: Well, I think there's several reasons. One of the main reasons is that the prestige, the spotlight is just not on family medicine physicians. We don't have the same reputation like some of the other doctors do in the subspecialties.
GUPTA (voice-over): Which is going to make finding doctors to fill rooms like this, even harder. Now, it's been 17 years since I finished medical school. And over that time, the number of medical student choosing primary care has slipped by more than 50 percent. If you want more of a scale of reference, at the nation's largest medical school at the University of Illinois, they graduated 314 medical students last year, only 20 chose primary care.
Last year, the American Academy of Family Physicians predicted a shortfall of 40,000 primary care doctors. And that was before the signing of the health care bill. So what will health care reform look like without enough primary care doctors?
DR. LORI HEIM, AMERICAN OF PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIAN: We have nowhere near the number of primary care or family physicians that we need to take care of the public. Simply having an insurance card may not guarantee that there is a physician whose practice will be open to new patients.
GUPTA: So why is that happening? One reason is plain and simple. It's money. The average primary care doctor makes $173,000 a year. Compare that to $419,000 for cardiologists or $335,000 for oncologists treating cancer.
(on camera): How much of this is about money? Just compensation?
KIBUYAGA: I think that's a major reason why a lot of medical students aren't choosing family medicine. The potential for financial gain is just not the same as those other fields. GUPTA (voice-over): Now, the health care bill does try to fix that. There's a 10 percent pay bump to family physicians through Medicare and the add-on bill which is now being considered in the Senate has an even bigger increase for doctors taking Medicaid and low income patients.
The bill that passed has other incentives as well. It expands the program to forgive loans to some medical students who go into primary care. Now, even before all of that goes into effect, there had been some signs of change. In fact, last week, when medical students around the country picked their specialty, the number picking primary care was up, for the first time in 13 years.
HEIM: We've had a huge debate about health care reform. What do we need to do to get this country on a healthy track? Well, the foundation of that is primary care and family medicine. Students took notice of that. They became excited, thinking about that -- that primary care was once again a viable career choice for them.
GUPTA: A viable career choice, because it may be attitude more than money. And that's the real hope for fulfilling the promise of health care reform.
COOPER: Up next, helping the people of Haiti struggling after the earthquake and one simple thing to get them clean drinking water, when we continue.
COOPER: I'll be heading back to Haiti in a few weeks to see firsthand what progress has been made and what challenges persist since the catastrophic earthquake.
My return is part of our continuing promise to report on the situation in Haiti. Tonight, we bring you a story of hope and how a group of Americans is helping Haitians get safe, clean water to drink. And as you'll see they're doing it with "One Simple Thing".
The numbers are simply staggering, children dying every day in Haiti due to water-borne illness. That was before the earthquake. There is no accurate count now. But there is hope.
That's because Dr. Richard Wukich and his organization called Potters for Peace are now in the country. Their fix, an ingenious hybrid, part clay pot and part water filter.
DR. RICHARD WUKICH, POTTERS FOR PEACE: It's made out of clay and sawdust and it's formed on a machine, it's made upside down. It's mixed with approximately 50-50 clay and sawdust. You pour dirty water in the top and as the water flows through these various cracks and crevices, it inevitably has to be passing by these particles of silver.
These particles of silver, when they go by, it's like a light turns on. They radiate and they kill the bacteria.
COOPER: The bottom line --
WUKICH: It saves lives.
COOPER: The clay filtration device is portable, can clean up to 2.5 liters of water per hour and costs as little as $15 to make. And Potters for Peace is not the only organization getting ceramic water filters like this to the people of Haiti. A group called Filter Pure which uses a different mixture for its pots has expanded its operations from the Dominican Republic across the border into Haiti.
So how effective are these pots? According to the two organizations that make them, water passed through the pot comes out 99.9 percent clear and 100 percent drinkable. The filtration pots are now being used in hospitals and temporary tent villages in Haiti. The device is also around the world in Sudan, Honduras and Afghanistan.
WUKICH: I started thinking, you know what, if you made one filter and saved one life one day, that would be statistically insignificant. Except if it was your kid. If it was your kid, that would be a great statistic. My kid lived.
COOPER: "One Simple Thing": cleaning water and hoping to make the lives of the Haitian people better than before.
COOPER: Amazing, "One Simple Thing".
We'll be right back.
COOPER: This week in our series, "Kids in Peril: Obesity in America", we're taking a close look at a crisis that may be killing America's kids. Now if that sounds over the top or extreme, it's not. A new Kaiser Permanente study predicts that soaring rates of extreme obesity may be cutting decades off the lives of kids. In the simplest terms, they're eating themselves to death.
We wondered though what does that really mean. What is going on inside a young child's body who's obese. What kind of damage is all that food doing?
You're about to see and so is a 12-year-old boy. Again, here's 360 MD Sanjay Gupta.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: As a father of three, it's especially hard for me to hear these stories. Children dying far earlier than they should; in some cases, their lives cut short by decades. These are children, the worst case scenarios of the nearly one-third of American kids who weigh too much. (on camera): But you see the thing is, behind all those stats, behind all those numbers are real stories. People are worried that what we're describing could happen to them. Let's go meet somebody.
BRIAN GREENE, TIGER GREENE'S DAD: How are you?
GUPTA: How are you all doing?
B. GREENE: Good.
GUPTA: Just 12 years old and 250 pounds. Tiger Green has a story. Call it the new American story.
TIGER GREENE, 250 POUND 12-YEAR-OLD: In our family, when you're happy, we eat. When you're sad, you eat. And when you just are watching TV, you eat.
GUPTA: What do you eat?
T. GREENE: Lunch, I have like a big 15-ounce steak or something and like five Sprites and stuff like that.
GUPTA: Five Sprites, one meal.
I'm almost scared to ask about dinner. What was that like?
T. GREENE: Take lunch times five.
GUPTA (voice-over): It's hard not to smile but also important to realize that Tiger didn't get here by himself. He had help from the people who care the most.
(on camera): I have three kids so, I'm the last guy in the world who preaches about anything nowadays because I know the reality. But I mean what were you thinking when you saw him eating that much?
B. GREENE: As a parent, you know, you want to see your kids happy. And mistakenly, horribly mistakenly, when we were eating, we were happy and somehow that computed to be good parenting.
GUPTA (voice-over): Tiger's dad wishes he would have known this one startling fact: children with an obese parent are 50 percent more likely to be obese themselves, 50 percent.
GUPTA (on camera): I think a lot of people focus on what's happening, what you look like on the outside of your body. Have you ever thought about what's going on in the inside of your body?
T. GREENE: Not much.
GUPTA: Well, there's something I think I want to show you today. In fact, that's why we brought you here to this hospital. We're going to go and take a look and see what's happening to your heart, what's happening to your liver and see what you think. Ok?
T. GREENE: Ok. GUPTA (voice-over): It's hard to believe this is a child's liver, all that white filled with fat; fat, not just on the outside of your body.
(on camera): That's happening inside your body.
(voice-over): For me as a doctor, this is especially disturbing, because we see this with patients who are typically decades older.
(on camera): That's the top of your femur that's the bone right here that goes into your hip. It is pushing the bone over here. You should have a nice layer of cartilage in between here, nice cushion. And because it's so much weight that bone is literally pushed back and into that joint. That's going to hurt.
(voice-over): Of course your joints hurting is not nearly as frightening as what all that fat is doing to your heart.
(on camera): This heart is having to work so hard, that muscle is just getting bigger and bigger and bigger which in the heart is a bad thing. After a while, it's just not going to be able to work as well.
T. GREENE: It's scary because I know that could be happening to me right now.
GUPTA: What we're talking about isn't theoretical. This is really happening right now.
In fact Tiger told me a story that really stuck with me. When he was in second grade, just 7 years old, he started to have chest pains. And doctors were concerned enough about his heart that he ended up in a place like this. Doctors checking his heart, doing procedures, doing tests to try and figure out what was going on; a second grader -- and all of this because of overweight and obesity.
Can you imagine as a child ending up in a room like this, doctors are worried you might not even be able to survive?
DR. STEPHANIE WALSH, CHILDREN'S HEALTHCARE OF ATLANTA: One of those kids who has an early death from cardiovascular disease.
GUPTA: So when you say early death, are you talking about people in their 30s having heart attacks? What does that mean?
WALSH: Well, this is pretty unprecedented. We haven't really seen 8 year-olds with type 2 diabetes before, so we don't actually know what's going to happen. But it's very concerning.
The good news is we can do something about it.
GUPTA (voice-over): Tiger has already started.
(on camera): This is a pretty good-looking refrigerator. I mean you have a lot of fruit; you have blueberries, you have strawberries, you have fresh vegetables down here. (voice-over): For tiger, it's a point of immense pride. He's now 30 pounds lighter. He has another 40 to go. And all those lost pounds are adding years to his life and changing his body on the outside and the inside as well. They were rapidly aging a boy into a sick old man, way before his time. And that smile, well, it means he's peeling off the pounds and those years.
COOPER: It's great he's been able to lose 30 pounds so far. I mean a lot of this obviously has to do with parents and what kind of food they're buying and giving to their kids. In this case, did his folks just not realize that their son was getting overweight?
GUPTA: Yes. I mean and that's going to sound sort of silly after having watched that piece but about half of parents that have an overweight or obese child, they simply look beyond it. Not to say they don't see it, but they kind of ignore it. In part they think it's the culture, in part they see a lot of their kids' friends looking the same way and partly think it's baby fat that may eventually disappear.
They simply don't see it. So therein lies part of the problem. It also seems to be this idea of eating as comfort.
GUPTA: And they both talked about this quite a bit. In anxious times, people tend to eat more and we've been through some pretty anxious times so far.
COOPER: But I mean to hear of 6 and 7-year-olds going to the emergency room with chest pains or type 2 diabetes, how common is that?
GUPTA: It's getting increasingly common. I don't want to overstate this by any means but it is becoming increasingly common. In fact, you hear about people even under the age of 10 starting to have evidence of coronary artery disease. We found a study I was preparing for this segment tonight of a 3 years old that had evidence of coronary artery disease for this reason.
Type 2 diabetes -- when I was in medical school, we referred to that as adult onset diabetes. It is now often seen in children because of simply being overweight.
COOPER: And just that video of the fat inside the liver, I didn't even realize livers get --
GUPTA: I know. It's remarkable that fat can really permeate just about every organ in the body and in a lot of places you wouldn't notice it. But with the liver, for example, it leads to significant inflammation throughout the body, stops your ability to clot.
You know Anderson, statin drugs -- that's a medication we talk about quite a bit --
GUPTA: It was approved by the American Academy of Pediatrics for children as young as 8 years old a couple of years ago.
COOPER: Wow. That's incredible.
GUPTA: So they say, you know what, we know it's unprecedented but we also know that we're at this unique time in our history when they think it.
COOPER: The fact he's been able to lose 30 pounds, he seems highly motivated. Let's hope he makes it. We'll keep on following him.
GUPTA: Yes. We'll keep an eye on him.
COOPER: Yes. Sanjay thanks very much.
GUPTA: Thank you.
COOPER: Our "Kids in Peril" series continues tomorrow with my interview with celebrity chef and dad of three, Jamie Oliver. He's been recognized for his work in leading the fight against childhood obesity in England. Now, he's here in the United States.
Here's a quick preview.
COOPER: One of the big things you did in England was encourage and really pressure the British government to change the food that they serve to kids in schools.
And in your TV shows here, you've actually gone around to schools in the United States. I want to show our viewers what you found in talking to kids in schools.
JAMIE OLIVER, CELEBRITY CHEF: Yes. Cool.
We're going to do a little test. All right. Who knows what this is?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Potatoes.
OLIVER: Potatoes. You think these are potatoes? Not potatoes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know.
OLIVER: Do you know what that is? Do you know what that is?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Broccoli. OLIVER: What about this? Good old friend, do you know what this is?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Celery.
OLIVER: No. What do you think it is, darling?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Onion.
OLIVER: Onion, no.
Immediately you get a really clear sense of do the kids know anything about where food comes from.
Who knows what that is?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A pear?
OLIVER: A pear, no.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A turnip.
OLIVER: No. I'm going to give you the first word. Egg --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Eggshell.
COOPER: I'm going to say, I'm embarrassed. I didn't know what the thing with the stalk was.
OLIVER: A beet.
COOPER: That was a beet. All right.
But I mean to see kids who don't know what a tomato is, it's pretty scary.
OLIVER: And the other clip as well, they didn't know what a potato was but as soon as you say fries, French fries, they're all over it.
I think we're in an important time in American history I believe. Governments need to start really investing in some of the damage that's been done over the last 30 years.
COOPER: You can see the full interview with Jamie Oliver tomorrow on 360.
Join the live chat right now at AC360.com.
Next on the program, the chilling deadline for a big city mayor; he's the top politician in Juarez, Mexico. The drug cartels say he has to leave office tonight. Our interview with the mayor and the latest on the drug violence, coming up. Also tonight, the killer whale's deadly attack on a SeaWorld trainer caught on tape. We know that but will a judge let the world see it? We'll tell you tonight, ahead.
COOPER: Tonight an interview with a marked man in charge of perhaps the most dangerous place on earth right now. He's the mayor of Juarez, the Mexican border city that's been terrorized, torn apart by drug cartels.
And this year alone more than 500 people have been murdered in Juarez and the drug lords have warned the mayor that he may be next. They've given him two weeks to leave office. Tonight is the deadline.
With our "Crime & Punishment" reporter, here's Gary Tuchman.
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The mayor of Juarez, Mexico, hates the drug cartels that have turned the city into a dangerous and violent place, a city with the highest murder rate in the world. The cartels want him gone permanently.
MAYOR JOSE REYES FERRIZ, CUIDAD JUAREZ, MEXICO: The threats are real. They're not just intimidating; they're real. And I have to take it very seriously.
TUCHMAN: Mayor Jose Reyes Ferriz was told two weeks ago that if he didn't quit his job by today, he would be assassinated. For added emphasis, a bloody animal head came with the note.
FERRIZ: I know I have a lot of people that not only don't like me but would like to do something to me.
TUCHMAN: So that's why his driver carries an automatic rifle with him at all times.
And in public, like at this patriotic celebration, the mayor has elaborate security and he's not backing down. Not only does he continue to appear at public events, he talks a lot about how the bad guys have ruined his city.
FERRIZ (through translator): Juarez is a lover of peace, and peace is what we are lacking.
TUCHMAN: During his three-year term, the mayor has fired hundreds of cops. He believed they were in bed with the narco- traffickers. The city's police force is now considered much less corrupt, and that angers the cartels and has led to assassinations of police and several threats against the mayor, including this very specific one involving the animal head.
(on camera): Mayor, how scared are you personally?
FERRIZ: Well, I take all the necessary precautions I can take. TUCHMAN (voice-over): I asked the mayor if it's safe to tour the city a bit. So we go to a skateboard and bicycle park. It's not crowded, but there are some kids having fun. Nevertheless, even in this environment, he doesn't go anywhere without an armed guard, although here, the rifle is left in its case.
FERRIZ: It's hard to have a normal life. It's -- it's extremely difficult. I love playing tennis. I haven't played in a couple of years. I love going to the movies. I haven't gone to the movies in a couple years.
TUCHMAN: He's a family man, a lawyer by trade. The mayor could quit tomorrow and live a less stressful, financially lucrative life. As we travel in his armored vehicle, he says he's well aware a killer could target him at any time. So I asked him about quitting.
(on camera): Do you have any thoughts about that possibility?
FERRIZ: No. I won't step down my position. It's a very important position. What we're doing is extremely important for our city. If we don't do it today, it's going to be very hard to do it tomorrow. It's going to be double hard.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): The contrasts in his life are surreal: the law-abiding citizens of Juarez want him to succeed. The cartels want him punished, they want him dead.
Gary Tuchman, CNN, Juarez, Mexico.
COOPER: Well, Gary and 360 producer, Ismael Estrada (ph), give us a behind-the-scenes look at their harrowing trip through Juarez. You can check out the blogs at AC360.com right now.
Coming up next; why nobody will be seeing the video of that deadly SeaWorld attack any time soon, what a court had to say.
And then our "Shot": a reporter agreeing to get tasered. Rick Sanchez, you have some competition.
COOPER: There are a number of other stories we're following. Let's check in again with Christine Romans for a "360 News & Business Bulletin" -- Christine.
CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, a Delaware pediatrician accused of molesting more than 100 young patients pleaded not guilty in a Delaware court today. Dr. Earl Bradley is facing a staggering 471 charges in connection with his alleged crime. Prosecutors say all of Bradley's victims were girls except for one boy, and they say they have the evidence to prove it.
Video of a deadly whale attack of the SeaWorld trainer will not be released any time soon. A Florida judge today let stand an injunction preventing the footage from being made public. The tape shows the 12,000-pound whale, Tilikum, pulling Dawn Brancheau under the water. These photos were taken just moments before that attack.
A massive baby carrier recall: the Consumer Products Safety Commission is urging people to stop using Infantino Sling Rider and Wendy Bellisimo slings. The move follows reports that the sling may have suffocated three infants.
And see this guy? Police say he was one of the two would-be robbers who tried to phone in their heist. It happened yesterday in Connecticut. The suspects allegedly called the bank, demanding that $100,000 be ready for them when they arrived to pick it up. The money wasn't waiting, but the cops were.
It's called criminal Darwinism, isn't it?
COOPER: That doesn't make any sense to me.
All right. Tonight's "Shot", a Japanese reporter willingly agrees to be tasered. Now, who would ever do such a thing?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stand by.
It's all done. It's all over. Just relax.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: We found this clip on LiveLeak.com. The reporter was a little shaken up but otherwise OK, despite the fact she was zapped. And speaking of zapped reporters, I give you the man himself.
ROMANS: Of course.
COOPER: The one, the only Rick Sanchez.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICK SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: I'm about to receive 50,000 volts of electricity. Do it.
It hurts. It hurts.
I'm about to receive 50,000 volts.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Rick is truly the taser master. But let's just see how they both fare in a side by side match-up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ah UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's all over. Relax.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
SANCHEZ: It hurts.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: We didn't save the best line. Do we not have the final, the cherry on the cake? The icing. We don't?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: I'm about to receive 50,000 volts of electricity. Do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: What was the line?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: Do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROMANS: I never get tired of it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: It hurts. It's painful. But no one's dead.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: But no one's dead. There you go. Something to think about as you go to bed tonight.
Hey, that's it for 360. Thanks for watching.
"LARRY KING" starts right now.