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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Coverage And Analysis Of Massive Protests Around New York City
Aired December 3, 2014 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Police officer in the death of an African American man after the officer put him in a chokehold. The man was ruled to have died from the result of that neck compression and chest compression. Officers were actually kneeling and sitting on him as well.
Eric Garner, 43 years old, the father of six. He was unarmed. Died in July after a scuffle during an arrest for allegedly selling tax free cigarettes outside a store in the City's Staten Island Borough. Word of the Grand Jury decision came down this afternoon. By early this evening, crowds began forming in Staten Island, up in Harlem as I said, Union Square, spots around Midtown. We also learned the Justice Department is investigating the incident. President Obama weighing in so did New York's Mayor.
That's the original video. That so shocked many in this city and frankly around the country where Eric Garner is seen. It's a lengthy video, more than 10 minutes long. And finally the videographer is kind of pushed away. But -- and then gets it from a different angle. Eric Garner brought down by police officers. Then apparently unconscious he died later.
The family spoke out tonight so did filmmaker Spike Lee. In our last hour, we'll bring you all of that. I want to go right now to Alexandra Field who is standing by. Where are you in terms of- where is the protest right now that you have been following?
ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We're just about at Rockefeller Center. We are actually started down in Union Square. The protest group -- demonstrators assembled down there. They have been walking all the way up town, a couple of miles now over the last hour. And this group has started to change and shifted and they picked people along the way. You can see them starting to sort of bottle neck as we get up towards Rockefeller Center.
You can hear these chants. They've been doing this for better part of an hour now. Right now, they are yelling as you can hear it. "How do you spell racist? NYPD." We've heard a lot of "Hands up. Don't shoot". And of course "I can't breath." Those words that we heard Eric Garner say at the end of that video, shot by bystanders, who was wrestled in Staten Island.
This group had assembled down in Union Square. This is actually started as a silent protest people with their hands up in the air saying nothing at all. As the group grew they decided to walk up toward the tree lighting in Rockefeller Center. And they've just sort of stopped here for the first time. We've really been walking for the better part of an hour. But as the crowds become more congested they had to stop.
We'll try and get a little bit closer to the streets so you can what's going on here. I want to show we've got the NYPD officers who are lined up here. And what they've actually done is driven the entire route of this protests where they can. But when traffic changes direction they've got to get out of their vehicles. They've been walking on foot along side the protesters. So you've seen all these NYPD officers walking in the street. The protesters are being told stay on the sidewalk.
No confrontations, a couple of blocks to go. People stop, the protesters got closer to police. They continue to chant and to shout. Police not engaging with them in any way -- no reason to -- but escorting essentially this demonstration as they make their way uptown, Anderson.
COOPER: It's fascinating for a life long New Yorker to actually see this in New York City because this is a city which usually protests are actually quite tightly controlled. You need to have a permit. The police designate what route you can actually use. We're now seeing protests in different parts of the city seemingly kind of moving at will to various areas.
Deborah Feyerick as we just saw was on the West Side Highway. We're going to try to make contact with her. And an extraordinary scene the West Side Highway, one of the major roads around the island of Manhattan -- protesters moving through traffic -- traffic that it looks like because it comes to a complete stand still. Deborah Feyerick where are you now?
DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson.
COOPER: You're on the air, Deborah.
FEYERICK: Anderson, can you hear us? Anderson, hey listen. This is remarkable. We were actually on the West Side Highway following the protesters walking amidst traffic. Some are honking in support, other are just honking because they're blocking traffic. It's interesting.
We spoke to one man and he said he did see a police officer beating some demonstrators with a baton. But it only seemed to be one officer. The rest have actually been watching the demonstrators as they protest. You can't see but on the other side there are police officers.
So they are monitoring this. We are told that there was one arrest. Somebody was put in a corrections van. We were also told that there are legal monitors on scene so then if any one does get arrested they can immediately get legal help.
So again nothing like this ever before walking up the West Side Highway against traffic heading north following what appears to be several hundred demonstrators, Anderson.
COOPER: Do you -- so you're saying there's about several hundred demonstrators. This is a group which is separate than the one that we just saw Alexandra Field in, also separate than we saw earlier in the night moving up from Columbus Circle heading towards Harlem. So right now this group, are they -- they're heading north? Is that correct?
FEYERICK: They are heading north, exactly against traffic. And that's what we're being told by a New York official and that is there are numerous groups all across Manhattan that are pockets o demonstrators really. Several hundred strong and they are taking over different areas of the city. They are protesting. They are chanting, "No way to cops." They are chanting, "Hands up."
They're really just talking about the fact that they want justice. And I have to tell you given the sheer volume of police presence. We've see the police on scooters. We have seen police walking. We've seen police running and right now they're really letting the demonstrators do what need to do without trying to spark any kind of confrontation. But you can see this gentleman here with his sign "I can't breathe."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do we want?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do we want?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When do we want?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do we want?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When do we want?
COOPER: So Deborah where are -- I'm just trying to get a kind of sense of -- you have or do you say maybe several hundred -- and correct if I'm wrong protesters moving north up the West Side Highway of Manhattan. The police, how are they keeping up with these protesters? Are they walking? And are they walking up traffic as well?
FEYERICK: Yeah, they're walking too. They're walking too. They're on scooters. You know when we were by the Christmas tree lighting they had all these different barricades. And police were actually moving barricades while other were directing traffic and allowing the protesters to march. So clearly officials wanted to try to avoid this scenario. The last thing they wanted was to put any one in danger. And clearly this is a much more volatile situation because there are so many cars. I'm trying to see if there are more police officers. It's difficult to get a visual from where we are. There are some blocking the streets over in this direction. You can see where the salt mines are piled for waiting for the snow. But anyway...
COOPER: So it looks like...
FEYERICK: ... they're just marching. And...
COOPER: ... Deborah...
FEYERICK: ... the cars are waiting. And...
COOPER: ... and Deborah, it looks like traffic is able to move a little bit. Do you have any sense of how far traffic is backed up? I mean I'm trying to get a sense as to how big this demonstration is actually is.
FEYERICK: Yeah, well the interesting thing is when we got here at 47th Street all of these -- hold on. Let's see what's going on here. OK.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, hey, hey, hey.
UNIDENTIFED MALE: Folks take it easy. Take an easy. Let the car go in.
FEYERICK: All right, Anderson the cars are trying to make their way amidst the protesters. We can tell that when we got here at about 47th Street police had formed a blue line. They would not let the demonstrators anywhere far south of that. So it's unclear whether now that cars are sort of opening up whether they are going to be allowed to pass. But we just don't know how far their going to try to walk. But you can see they are taking on some of the drivers.
COOPER: And Deborah I'm curious...
FEYERICK: And that one man yelling right now wants to make sure that were safe that they're being peaceful.
COOPER: Deborah, I want to ask is there a -- somebody leading this? I mean is there a sense -- do you know where the protesters are actually heading? Do most of the protesters know where they are actually heading or is it somewhat haphazard kind of depending on the moment?
FEYERICK: You know, its haphazard. It's almost organic, you know, the people seem to gather. We can't tell whether this decentralized or whether there's a leader. But everybody seems to be lock step in terms of their signs, in terms being here. They were aware. This is not like a group that sort of came up spontaneously. It's organized in that sense. But we don't know exactly who is leading this particular demonstration. As I say, continuing up the West Side Highway -- you've been on the West Side Highway probably as many times as I have. And I can tell you, it's probably backed up at least up to 100th Street just by the flow of it.
Once the flow of traffic stops then everything else stops. And this is one of the most heavily traffic routes obviously in the entire city because of those around the West Side in Manhattan, Anderson.
COOPER: Yeah, I was going to say I've been on the West Side Highway. I have never walked up the West Side Highway against traffic when traffic is completely stopped.
FEYERICK: Yeah, me neither.
COOPER: So as a lifelong New Yorker, it's just kind of a stunning sight to see. I'm not sure if resonates for many around the rest of the country. Alexandra Field, do want to just check in briefly with you again. And explain where you are now in relation to where Deborah is.
FIELD: OK, we are east of Everest. We're by Rockefeller Center where the tree was lit tonight. This is the crowd that came up from downtown and prior walking up two miles up here. And this is really the person the crowds (ph) suffer a significant period of time. There are barriers. And we're sort hemmed in here. You know and we've got the police on the other side of the barrier. And there's a crowd sort of chanting and shouting at the police. Again the police are not reacting to this.
Anderson, I heard you asked Deborah if she could spend -- if there was a leader in the group. And in this group there basically been like there's definitely has not been a visible leader or an organizer driving this thing.
We've actually seen a couple sort spontaneous initiatives to move the crowd or generate some action. This all started when we were down in Union Square. And a woman just sort of stepped forward and said, "Who wants to have protest? Lets go." And two different people sort of take up that mantle as we walked up town at one point the crowd stopped to do something like this just sort of chanting. We got in the direction of the police. And they did that for a few minutes and then someone else sort forward in the crowd and said, "March, march, march." And we saw this group come forward again.
This is the first time though that was really been contained like we are right now. There hasn't really been an effort from the police to stop or limit anyone's from movement. But given that we are in town now, given the fact that we're just outside of Rockefeller Center where you had sort of security increase control the crowd towards the tree lighting. You are getting to this area where you have these barricades up and you have a lot of traffic.
Frankly people who weren't out here to protests who may have been for the tree lighting, some of them are joining the group. Some of them are hearing people chant and behind they could just sort of stop and join. And it's easy to break off and come in to some that we're seeing the entire time that we've been with this group which is about two hours now, Anderson.
COOPER: All right. And it's fascinating to see. Again, we are on till 10:00 tonight. And obviously coverage in CNN story is going to continue well beyond that. So we're going to continue checking with Alexandra and Deborah and other correspondent Chris Cuomo is out there as well, others who are following the number of protest which are taking place in this city. A quick reminder, make sure you set your DVR. You watch 360 whenever you want.
Coming up as we continue to watch the protest make its way around Manhattan, we're going to check in shortly with our panel here. We'll also hear from filmmaker's Spike Lee and others. A quick break first.
COOPER: We're talking you back to protest in the West Side Highway. I understand protesters had been lying down in some cases. Police had been arresting them. Deborah Feyerick is there. She joins us now. So Deb, what's going on?
FEYERICK: All right. So we want to show you, we are at 57th Street in the West Side Highway. You can see that police have formed a barricade. The protesters are confronting them right now. This is of course direct confrontation that we have seen with protesters yelling directly at the police officers. You can see they're now starting to -- they're starting to -- some of them laying down on the West Side Highway.
You see a man right here. He is actually sort of showing that he can't breathe -- obviously Eric Garner representative there. And they're moving peacefully. The police has started to arrest individuals. We have seen a couple of people who had been handcuffed with the plastic handcuffs. We have been told by police that if we don't get out of the way that we will also be arrested.
So right now we've got a couple of cars that are being blocked by protesters laying in front of them. But this is really where the majority of the police action has happened. What you can't see is here are some of the protesters. Well, now they're starting to sit down, Anderson, as you can see.
COOPER: So Deborah, are they sitting down on the Highway?
FEYERICK: So just lay down for a second. They are sitting down on the highway. The side of the highway that they are on is heading north. Traffic heading south completely blocked, complete standstill as these protesters have taken over the West Side Highway. It's something that officials did not want to happen. But it has now happened in force. The entire West Side pretty much shut down in terms of traffic moving in either direction, Anderson.
COOPER: And can you tell approximately how many demonstrators there are at this point?
FEYERICK: It looks like there are a couple of hundred here probably between 300 protesters conservatively.
COOPER: Within your eye sight? OK.
FEYERICK: And I've got an equal number of police officers. Yes. And that's what I'm looking at right now between the people that are sitting on the ground and also that are standing on the divide as well as those that are laying down in front of police cars. So everything pretty much stopped right now. Police are letting it play out.
We heard one officer earlier basically telling another officer, "Just let happen. Just let it happen." So they're arresting people who are disobeying but they are not scooting in and they are not engaging and they are not escalating the situation. Right now they want it to play out, Anderson.
COOPER: It does seem, Deborah, that the strategy for the Police Department perspective is to kind of let this breathe as much as possible. And that's a poor choice of words. I mean to let this play out as much as possible to kind of let people blow off steam without actually trying to escalate it by either engaging directly with the demonstrators or making arrests unless they feel its absolutely necessary.
FEYERICK: That's exactly right, Anderson. That's exactly right. They are letting them blow off steam. That's a very good analysis. The police are ready and do they have their batons out. They're wearing riot helmets. Some of them have those riots -- some of them have the shield down. But they are standing there. And you can see they are two and three and four deep. There are police officers who are also on scooters. They are very, very mobile. This is a very mobile situation.
Police responding as needs be. And you've got a lot of commanders. And that's also quite impressive. Anderson. You've got a lot of commanders who are making sure that these officers know exactly what it is they are supposed to be doing.
There is a helicopter, Anderson. It's shining a light on the protesters. The police -- it's hard to see from where we are. But by -- just as the fact that there is a light on these protesters, it's likely that that is one of the NYPD helicopters. We've got helicopters who can keep eyes on the ground -- situational awareness. And those helicopters can really zero in very closely.
We are now walking. We are heading north now. They have stopped sitting and we are now going to walk north. And Walter (ph), if you can show just -- we are right there at the Hudson Parkway. We're now heading up towards Harlem and the Bronx if police will allow that.
So, right now we are just walking.
COOPER: So, Deborah, had -- that line was to stop protesters from heading further south but earlier you've said the protesters were heading north. So at some point did they move over the highway and start to fight ahead south again? FEYERICK: Yes, that's exactly right. That's exactly right. First, we were heading against traffic. Now technically, we would be heading in the direction of traffic. So, both sides of the highway were close but it's very interesting strategy because what police are doing is almost if they're using themselves as sort of human barricade to make sure that the protesters are contained.
So they're stopping the flow. They want to be able to keep everybody in the same general area because it is easier for them to move with a single crowd than it is for the crowd to go in all different directions and then it becomes sort of a cat and mouse game.
So we're now essentially walking back up to West Side Highway towards Harlem, Anderson.
COOPER: All right. I want to -- Deborah, while we continue monitor that, I want to go to our Chris Cuomo who is making his way up with another group of protesters toward the West Side Highway -- west apparently from New York's Times Square.
Chris, where are you now and about how many people are you with?
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN CO-HOST NEW DAY: We are -- about 500 people. They came back to Time Square. They had left. And there are very good reasons that you see groups moving around.
This is a very coordinated effort, Anderson. It's very different than what we saw in Ferguson both in tone and tactics. So what you have is the groups figuring out where to go, where to go, where it to be -- hold on a second.
The -- there are a lot of people here with different points of view. That's what's going on. But there is a big coordinated effort, Anderson, that get to the same spots. They try to move around and create more effectiveness for the protest in terms of amount of time they can be in one place.
So right now we're leaving Time Square and moving toward the West Side Highway. The obvious concern there is about disrupting, you know, rush hour traffic which about over now. But we also know from the police perspective not only they are walking with them. They're walking among them in uniform and large numbers of plain clothes officers -- something we also didn't see in Ferguson where they're literally step for step with the protesters hearing where they are going so they can anticipate the policing needs.
So you're literally listening to these groups of organizers saying, where we going to go, how do we get there, how many are there, and they are coordinating as we walk, Anderson.
COOPER: And Chris, the scene that we're watching on the other side as you were talking is where Deborah Feyerick is where your group -- that the group that you're reporting on is heading toward and it seems like the West Side Highways largely shutdown by protesters.
I want to go to Deborah again because Deborah it looks like the -- what's going on there now? It looks like while Chris was talking, things shifted.
FEYERICK: Yeah, that's exactly right. We -- so, you've got -- this is the -- this is heading uptown. This is heading downtown. The protesters are going back and forth from each side. A lot of people were told, "Walking in traffic, walk in traffic, move north to north." And that is exactly what they are doing.
But the interesting thing is north bound, there are absolutely no cars. So it's actually quite safe, quite peaceful. On the south bound side heading downtown towards Wall Street, the cars are waiting. They've got no choice because the police are blocking everything from about 57th Street.
So it's unclear when the cars will be allowed to move most likely once all the protesters sort of get out of their range. It's going to be sort of a slow movement to get these cars back running.
So we're heading north and that police helicopters still overhead, still shining at night. There are organizers and that's kind of interesting, Anderson. There are people who were telling the group, "Keep in tight, keep in tight to move north, to move north." So, there is organization here.
And it seems that everybody is just doing what they've been instructed to do moving to make a statement that they want justice for Eric Garner and for Michael Brown and the other people who have...
COOPER: And Deborah, you're not clear...
FEYERICK: ... taking down by ...
COOPER: ... you're not clear Deborah. Where exactly -- or is the crowd clear, where they are headed at this point?
FEYERICK: We don't know where they are headed but I think the organizers had a pretty good strategy because everybody seems to know what they are supposed to be doing. This isn't just sort of a spontaneous demonstration. It certainly doesn't feel like that. Earlier we were told by one of the protesters that the older people and high school kids came out. They're the ones who came out at 5:00.
This is a little bit mellow (ph) crowd, alot of college students, a lot of young people. So we're trying to figure out exactly who organized this but it is orderly and it is peaceful. And police are letting It happen and letting it happen in a way that these protesters can do
what they need to do and get where they're going. We just don't exactly know where that is, Anderson.
COOPER: Well, Deborah Feyerick, I can tell you and I'm not sure if you're aware of this. On the left hand side in our screen and our viewers are seeing another group of protesters. Chris Cuomo estimated it to be as many as 500 or so people. They apparently have now reach West Side Highway further south I believe of where you are. So they will be now be walking up in the same direction that you are now walking. So obviously, that protest that you were with, if they join up that's about to get a lot bigger. We're going to be join -- we're going to join our Chris Cuomo in just a moment.
We're going to take a short break. We're going to see where this thing is going. We're going to be joined also by our panelist Michaela Angela Davis and Charles Blow.
We'll be right back.
COOPER: Welcome back. We have been watching the largely peaceful in fact it seems like overwhelmingly peaceful shutdown of a major highway here in New York Manhattan's West Side Highway. Protesters making their way north. Second way of marchers now joining the first group. Chris Cuomo is with that second group.
Chris, where are you? And are you guys already on the highway?
CUOMO: Yes. We're on the West Side Highway. We're on 49th Street on the West Side Highway. Traffic is closed here. You can see we have the three lines of police but very civil here.
There's -- there no altercation that we've seen between both police and protesters. Protesters were pushed on to the sidewalk. They took the direction. They're now walking up the sidewalk trying to join up with the other group.
Again, very different from Ferguson in tone and tactic. This is very coordinated. You have people within each group. This is probably the biggest group of protesters. They coordinated with other people to know where they are, to find ways to be most effective in a city that is highly policed, right? I mean the culture here is that protests have to be very kind of sequestered and this is different.
They're becoming much more free flowing by being mobile, Anderson. The police are dealing with that by having officers in plain clothes not riot gear walking with them step for step. There also a lot of plain clothes officers. You can see regular uniforms like you're seeing right now from Frank's (ph) shot.
You're also at plain clothes guys within the ranks of the protesters themselves. So they're literally step for the step with them movements here. The chance or what you'd expect -- but I think what's different here, there's anger, there's the same issues that are going on because what happened with Eric Garner but there's a big coordination of this, Anderson, to try to get maximum effectiveness with minimum disruption. That's what one of the guys said to me who's one of the organizers.
"We don't want to cause trouble. We want to exercise our rights and we want to have impact."
COOPER: And then certainly on this city tonight having impact -- and obviously, a lot of people watching around the country -- and from tweets I'm getting even around the world where you continue to join in with Chris Cuomo and Deborah Feyerick.
Joining us though is cultural critic Michaela Angela Davis, CNN Commentator and New York Times columnist Charles Blow and Dan Bongino a former Secret Service Agent and a former New York City Police Officer.
Michaela A, as you watch those protests, your thoughts. And also more, you know, immediately you're thought on the lack of an indictment of the officer in the killing of Eric Garner.
MICHAELA ANGELA DAVIS, CULTURAL CRITIC AND WRITER: Well first, this is stunning. You know, we're all New Yorkers and we've never seen this kind of organic protest with the -- I think it's emblematic of the frustration and the confusion that people are saying the same these things happen in all these different areas. It's really illustrating how our feeling because I think even though we're suspicious, we thought that -- I think we thought that there was going to be a indictment because there were so much evidence.
You saw it. You heard it. He was unarmed. He wasn't resisting. So I think that people were in -- earlier today, we're in a state of shock and a lot of pain and fear. And now, you see they're moving into action and strategy.
And also, I think that perhaps the Police Department has also had some time to think about it. And the world is watching and the government is watching that they also have strategy which shows us the difference between what can happen when the police are aggressive and what can happen when the police are letting the process leave it self out.
So, but in terms of how it felt, I think what we're seeing Anderson is this like cycle of fear on both sides. You see the police are acculturative fear black men and now the community is cultured to fear the police. And so, what we saw happened with Eric Garner is an illustration of that. And it's -- we're in a dangerous place right now where both sides are having such a hard time knowing who each other are. And there are families and communities broken. And it was no relief which is keep having one after the other.
COOPER: And Charles Blow. I mean, I saw some of your tweets earlier today. I mean the one point you tweeted, "I feel like I can breath."
CHARLES BLOW, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I mean I think it's really hard to watch this and be able to comprehend it because in a way it's not -- it's incomprehensible. It is -- it's not even something you want to have a debate about because it's not a debatable fact.
We keep seeing the same sorts of people who looked alike either the -- on the losing end of violence by police. And we keep seeing them not be held accountable for those deaths. And then, this is not like, "Oh, we're not bumping to you and we'd had a bad situation and you'll recover from it. You'll bounce back if it was just the moment of your life."
The life is over. This is not -- this is the ultimately kind of sentence and we're having death and it's just passed out on the street before you could even -- no matter what the person may have done or not, the person is now dead. So if they are -- if they have, you know, violated the law, the justice system should deal with that. That should be dealt with on the street with a death -- ending in the death of the person.
And that is a problem I think. I think a lot of people are offended by that. I think we are -- America...
BLOW: ... America in general is a offended by inequity. It goes against the very grain of what we believe we are as a people.
COOPER: Dan, you're former NYPD Officer. I know you've been getting a lot of calls from police officers you know. What are they've been saying to you about the (inaudible)?
DAN BONGINO, FORMER SECRET SERVICE AGENT: Well, they're quite surprised. There wasn't an indictment either. I think for opposite reasons, some of them but given the spectrum, Anderson, of the charges that were out there from reckless and danger and all the way up to men slaughter, I think a lot of them were surprised. But one quick thing, Anderson. I can't let your guest say is without challenging.
Police officers are not trained to fear black men. That's just not true. I don't know why you would say that. I work in the community as a police officer. That was probably 85 to 95 percent black. I wasn't trained to fear black men. I was trained to fear man who presented a danger to me. If they were black, white, or Hispanic, it didn't, you know, it didn't matter. That's just not true.
DAVIS: Well, this is how it feels as a community. When you see a 12- year old -- to me -- be shot to death in front of as in three seconds...
BONGINO: Hey, just so you know...
DAVIS: ... a 12-year old, so what I'm trying to communicate is how we are feeling as community, as a result of seeing one after the other after the other.
BLOW: Right and that's -- yeah.
DAVIS: That it seems like a threat for us. My grandfather was a police officer for 33 years in Philadelphia and as a black officer, he walk to street. He knew the community. He took kids to play basketball, you know, the police...
DAVIS: ... athletic league so this is not, not -- I have police man in my family.
BONGINO: Right but that's not -- right.
DAVIS: We're seeing now this is a very different temperature. This is very different relationship. We are in so much pain. We can even recover.
BONGINO: I understand and I'm not disputing that the black experience in America has been far different. I'm white. I cannot comprehend what it was like to live under Jim Crow, to have suffered some of the indignities. I can't comprehend that. You are absolutely correct but that's not what you've said.
You said that there is somehow a culture in Police Departments to fear black men, that's not accurate. That's a different argument.
DAVIS: What I said is how this feels to us. I'm not saying that as fact. I don't know how you're trained and how you're cultured. This is how it feels.
BLOW: And I think we should also broaden it to say, you know, not necessarily the people are trained but that society kind of acculturates us to fear.
BLOW: And that's not necessarily just a specific to police officers but I think that that is all of us. And so, that is how the whole justice system becomes corrupted and bias because we make up the justice system. We are the jurors. We are the people who pass judgment. We are the judges. We are the police officers.
All of the bias that exists within in society comes out and we are not always even aware that we have the bias. That is the sad part of that. That is extension.
COOPER: Dan, you don't believe that?
BONGINO: No, I think that's just an easy excuse. And for you to say that and say that -- and just make a massive stereotype and somehow there is this latent bias. And everybody instinctively because they watch the movie once or twice fear someone who happens to look different in them is utterly absurd. That's ridiculous.
BLOW: Do you have any knowledge of the social science on implicit bias in America? Do you have any knowledge or whatsoever...
BONGINO: Listen, you can talk to me every scientific study...
BLOW: ... there is a mountain of...
COOPER: One at a time. One at a time.
BLOW: ... that backs up the notion that there is implicit and explicit bias in American Society and for you to suggest that that is not true is ridiculous. And it is offensive on a night like this for you to suggest...
COOPER: Dan, respond.
BONGINO: I think it's ridiculous that you stereotyping and basically all of America and say that somehow that -- and I'm not denying again for the second time that the black experience in America is far different. I don't know what it's like to have a hoodie on in Manhattan and not be able to get a cab. I don't.
I will never understand that but for you to stereotype the entire country and quote a few footnotes in social online...
BLOW: That's not foot notes.
BONGINO: ... no, listen, I...
BLOW: Those are major studies. And don't try to talk on a both of sides of you mouth and say that you recognize the bias and then that you deny the bias. You cannot have them both ways. There is bias in America. You cannot deny that.
BONGINO: You're trying to make an overly simplistic argument.
BLOW: And you cannot deny science. And this is not a night on which you're going to be able to deny science.
BONGINO: Right, so explain to me please the science that everyone in America has some...
BLOW: No one said everyone...
BONGINO: You just said that.
BLOW: Whenever people talks, saying everyone, and no one, there is always and there is never. They have already stepped outside the boundaries of social science...
BONGINO: You just said that.
BLOW: ... again, that is not the way science works. Science never says always, never, everyone and no one. It says, that there is a bias and it tilts one way or another and there is mountain of social science that said that they are bias and it tilts and they tilt against everyone.
COOPER: Dan, there are tons of tons of studies...
BLOW: (Inaudible) but other ways.
COOPER: ... I mean there are tons of studies that are done where people are showing photographs of other people and have to make split second judgments of those people. And -- I mean, there are many, many studies showing there is inherent bias in many people.
BONGINO: Right, but how does that relate to the specific case today? We can have a very sensible, reasonable argument about why he was confronted over selling loosey cigarettes in the street, show colds in policing. But to make this big, bold statement that there's somehow a latent bias that may have contributed...
COOPER: Right. I heard you on this. Charles, how do you respond to that? BLOW: That is how data is collected. It is collected in the aggregate. If you just try to look at individual cases, you can always make an argument back and forth. What we have to do is to look all the data and look at all of the cases and look and see if there is bias in all of the cases.
If you can show me the same numbers of people not only in America but also right here in New York City who are all -- who are white, who have been shot by police officers and you can show me that it is equitable then I will listen to that argument. But you cannot do that because that is absolutely not true.
BONGINO: Are you the person -- you don't want to listen...
BLOW: The New York Times has it on in site two nights -- every notable case of police killing in New York City going only about 1990 and it is full of black and brown faces. And you cannot look at that list and say, you can go -- one is situation after another and say, "Well I can figure out what might -- well, listen, this officer might have been afraid, this officer might have tried to do something, throughout that might have been justified."
But when you look at that in the aggregate, you look at all of the data you cannot come away from that suggesting that there is equity in the number of people who are shot and killed...
BONGINO: Who's saying that?
BLOW: ... by police officers. That is simple not the case.
COOPER: Dan, you can respond.
BONGINO: Charles, you don't appear to be open as any argument I make, so it really doesn't matter...
BLOW: I'm not open to people being killed on a street.
BONGINO: Who said that? Are you just making this up as you go along?
BLOW: No. Nobody is making it up. But we're not ...
COOPER: Let Dan respond.
BONGINO: Yeah, am I allowed talk? Charles, no one is saying that more black men may not have been shot. I don't have that data. What I'm saying is if we are interested in solving the problem generated from this case which I agree from both perspectives -- there are some very serious problems here with what happened. But you're saying that there is a latent bias here and if that there may have been some racist in this case without any evidence of it in the specific case has nothing to solve the problem.
BLOW: I'd never even drilled down on the specific case. I said you have to look at it in the aggregate. You have to look at all the data and have to look at society as a whole. If we can acknowledge that there is bias in the society we have to be able to acknowledge that that bias can create into our justice system.
That is what I have said. And I had nothing more than that and you will not put words in my mouth.
BONGINO: Charles, you've done that for me. I'm not saying. I just got done explaining it to you. I am not saying there is not bias, that would be ridiculous. It's not bias in society. Of course there's mesogenic, racism, xenophobia. Of course we're at society of men and women, we're all sinners.
That's not what I'm saying. I'm saying you don't seem to have any interest in solving the problem in this case generated going forward other than making bold claims about some cultural problem in America that you can pinpoint existing in this case. You can't.
DAVIS: So, why wasn't he just written a ticket, right? So, there are some things that are just very simple that are causing trauma and pain in a way that is sometimes inexplicable. This is a very simple question to...
COOPER: Given to what he was alleged who have done.
DAVIS: Right. If you're selling loosies, if you are selling, you know, knockoff handbags, right? When you're selling petty little things on the street, typically you're giving us citation. And -- so in this instance, we can't manage what happened. Particularly, you hear the fellow who was videotaping and he just broken up a fight.
Eric Garner had just stopped violence on the street in his community. Then you pick up where they're approaching him for loosies. So this idea of his humanity not being considered and not being given something simple like a ticket rather than being killed.
COOPER: Dan, how important to you do you think it will be -- like if a judge allows it to hear what the Grand Jury actually heard? Because Grand Jury was seated for some three months. They heard an awful lot of witnesses. They heard an awful lot of testimony. We don't know what they heard. And the prosecutor says they're going to appeal to a judge to try to release that information. To you, is that going to be critical in trying to determine what happened?
BONGINO: Absolutely, Anderson. In this case, you know, the old adage they say you can indict a ham sandwich. You probably heard in 1,000 times. It's absolutely true. Very rarely in my experience in the Federal Law Enforcement System and with the N.Y.P.D. that someone not get indicted. I was kind of surprised. Again, I'm not getting in to the specific of it but most people get indicted just the -- all you're doing is the establishing probable cause that a crime did in fact happen. And they charge so many different reckless -- from engagement to manslaughter.
I think a lot of police officers were surprised as well. So, I think exposing the evidence the Grand Jury saw would be very helpful because there are maybe something you and I and your audience here doesn't know...
COOPER: Charles, anything -- final...
BLOW: Again, that does not follow the science, right? So the Wall Street Journal has up a study on its site two nights. It publish two nights. Only 41 officers left seven years have been charge with either murder or manslaughter. It is shooting on duty shootings in the whole United States.
This is not -- it's a very rare thing that people -- that officers actually get held accountable for killing people on the street. That is -- that is what...
COOPER: In general, not necessarily against police officers clearly against police officers and we've seen time again the studies jurors often give their presumption of doubt to police officers. So that's not exactly what Dan was talking about. But Charles, I appreciate you've been on, Michaela as well, Dan Bongino as well.
I want to go back to our Chris Cuomo who was in the West Side Highway. What's happening where you're at and where are you, Chris?
CUOMO: Hey, Anderson. How are you? They got coralled of 12th Avenue which leads to into the Henry Hudson. It's not traffic lessen obviously. But that's what happened. They got put into this side road here and this is become a mass organization point for them. There's a free lines of officers here not in riot gear. They're just in regular uniforms.
This is tough for the police. They're head to head with a bunch of people who'd be very provocative or angry, you know, you hear the typical call of the things about the media but in the other half of them are asking us to be here to get the message out. And you have to play with -- if you allow we'll come back to you --
let me move to the crowd. Come with me Frank. So we'll move down. So you come down here. You see the police and then you see that there's a whole different range of people here. A lot of students are usually the most ugly in terms of what (inaudible).
They're getting to here. You get more people who are from this city. And they've got a different message which is more about the outrage of what's going on. And then you have different points of direct confrontation with the police officers where they're asking questions to the officers.
So there's a lot going on.
CUOMO: And, you know, you get a range of angers. Anger towards the media, that's anger towards the police but there is no violence here, Anderson. I think that's important. COOPER: All right. Chris Cuomo.
CUOMO: This man was the right to have his camera and say what he wants.
COOPER: Chris Cuomo, thank you very much. We'll continue to check back in with you. A lot of people playing the cameras.
We're going to take another quick break. We're going to bring you more from this night of protest in Manhattan next.
COOPER: Quite a night of protest here in New York. I want to go back to our Chris Cuomo who's with group of some 500 who has in moving at the West Side Highway. Chris, where are they now and what are you seeing?
CUOMO: We're still in the same place and there's something very important here. I want to meet somebody. His name is George (ph). He's been one of the organizers here tonight and again, this has been a very different set of tactics used here.
They've moved around and they have amassed in groups and then spread out and it's giving them a great deal of effectiveness and being able to continue to move and protest in a city where it's usually hard to do that.
So George, is my assumption correct that this was intentionally that you've been moving around on purpose and coordinating efforts to spread out the effort?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have. We want to be where we feel our message will be most effective. We want the NYPD to know how enraged we are, how upset we are. And we feel like if we move around -- you know what I'm saying -- we're actually picking up people who feel the same way we do and they're moving with us in solidarity and supporting the families of the victims. You know what I'm saying? The police are not the victims. Eric Garner and Michael Brown, Jewell Martin (ph) and so many more, they are the victims.
CUOMO: It's not just about one case for you. It's about issues of concern that you say again and again.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's about injustice. Everywhere is injustice anywhere. And we're going to be here regardless of how long it takes and so they get our message. We're not going anywhere.
CUOMO: But it seems that your intentions here are very much in line of, you know, your first amendment rights and straight civil disobedience. I don't see a lot of provoking of police officers. It's chance of message and just to be heard. What is your intention?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Our intention is to be peaceful, orderly, and share our message and make people recognize who we are and hear us, hear us. Listen and hear. CUOMO: George, I appreciate it. Listen and hear. I got the message. Thank you for letting me talk to you.
UNIDENTIFED MALE: My pleasure. Thank you.
CUOMO: And not having them shout me down at least for this one interview.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know what we appreciate you being here...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... this a way our story gets told around the world. So thank you...
CUOMO: That's my job. Anderson, back to you.
COOPER: All right, Chris Cuomo thanks very much. Chris we're going to continue checking with you. I also want to bring our Deb Feyerick. Deb, where are you? Are you still on the West Side Highway? How are you? It's still shutdown?
FEYERICK: No. It's very interesting. The police really had a beat on this whole thing. They stopped the protesters in about 72nd Street where there is an exit. The protesters exited 72nd Street. And then instead of going north, they were stopped by police and now everybody is moving south down towards the Lincoln Center.
Again, on Broadway middle of street traffic stop but the police escort really you've got community officers. You've also got vehicles that are undercover vehicle -- unmarked vehicles I should say -- marching peaceful but heading to Lincoln Center now, Anderson.
COOPER: All right, Deb Feyerick. I appreciate that. I do want to bring quickly Jeff Toobin, Sunny Hostin, Danny Cevallos.
Jeff, very quickly though, the likelihood of a federal case being made?
TOOBIN: Michael Brown in the Darren Wilson situation, I think it's very unlikely. In this case I think it actually is a good possibility. There are a lot of parallels in the police behavior here to the Rodney King case where there was a successful federal prosecutions so I think the Department of Justice will actually pursue this vigorously.
COOPER: We got to take quick break. More when we come back.
COOPER: It's being quite a day, now a quite a night here in New York City when the words began to filter through out the city and the country that a Grand Jury in New York have decided not to indict a police officer in the killing of Eric Garner after he was attempted to be arrested after allegedly selling loose cigarettes or loosies in Staten Island over the summer. We have seen a number of protests all through out the city tonight. The protests continue to go on. In some cases several small protest and others hundreds of people you're seeing marching up the West Side Highway essentially shutting down one of the largest highways that goes around the island of Manhattan down the West Side of Manhattan. It's one of the major roads. It's not only around Manhattan but many people used to get in and out of the city.
A rare night to see this kind of protest here in the city of New York.
Our CNN coverage continuous with these protests and more on the death of Eric Garner now with Don Lemon in CNN tonight.