American Morning

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June 30th, 2009
04:00 PM ET

We Listen – Your Comments 6/30/09

Editor's Note: American Morning's Tuesday viewers were glad to see Madoff sentenced and none cared how he would fare in jail.

  • Nick:  Why would anyone be worried about bernie after he ripped off so many people,who cares what is life would be like in  prison.  he did not care about the people he ripped off.
  • Drew:  Your interview with Larry Levine on how life in prison will be with Madoff I felt was pretty weak.  Where were some of the harder questions, such as should he stake out the biggest guy in prison and start a fight...or should be become someones bitch in order to get protection.  Larry Levine's insight in the prison was pretty weak.
  • Julio:  I just heard a "Prison Consultant" speaking on what Bernard Madoff should expect in prison. This guy is more of a con than anything else and should probably be returned to prison for his bogus consulting business. Although not impossible it is highly improbable that any harm will come to  Bernard Madoff from other inmates as he will most likely be in protective custody or a form of it. An if the consultant want to argue the point, I too spent time behind bars a combined total of 11 years and 9 months in 3 different states. Shame of this so called Consultant for getting on National Televison and talking as if he were an authority in the matter subject. Are there murderes and rapist in prison? Of course, but I stand on my ground that Mr. Madoff will not be allowed to interact with most of the population. Federal Prison Officials will not just carelessly put Madoff in harms way and it would be ridiculous to think so unless you want attention or are coning people by means of fear.

Do you believe Mr. Madoff should receive special protection in jail because of the nature of his crimes?  Comment here or follow the story.

The pastor supporting guns in church was poorly received, as most felt church was no place for guns.

  • Gary:  God and Guns.  Just shows how some Christians have perverted the teachings of Jesus.  Arent ministers supposed to be Christlike?  I cant even imagine Jesus carrying a gun, concealed or otherwise.  It is totally contrary to what he taught.

How would you feel in a church where everyone was openly carrying guns?  With the recent shootings in churches, is this an appropriate alternative?


Filed under: American Morning
June 30th, 2009
01:01 PM ET

Anti-social networkers

You might say they are an endangered species. Folks who could care less about twitters, tweets and pokes. They're the last of the social network holdouts and they're proud of it. CNN's Christine Romans has the story.


Filed under: Technology
June 30th, 2009
11:42 AM ET

Hispanic leaders want immigration reform now

President Obama got elected with a huge boost from Latino voters. Now some Hispanic leaders are demanding that the president make good on a campaign pledge to take on the politically charged issue of immigration reform.


Filed under: Immigration • Politics
June 30th, 2009
11:07 AM ET

Iraqis cheer-and fear-U.S. pullout from cities

Iraqi soldiers join in a parade Tuesday in Karbala to mark the withdrawal of U.S. troops from cities and towns.

Iraqi soldiers join in a parade Tuesday in Karbala to mark the withdrawal of U.S. troops from cities and towns.

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN)  - Tuesday marked the deadline for American troops to pull out of Iraq's towns and cities - a long-anticipated date that has been met by street festivals in Baghdad.

Celebrations were tempered, however, by fears of renewed violence as insurgents seek to use the date to stage new attacks.

Newscasters on state TV network Al-Iraqiya draped Iraqi flags around their necks as an on-screen clock counted down to midnight Monday (5 p.m. ET). Earlier Monday evening, hundreds of people danced and sang in a central Baghdad park to mark the U.S. pullout.

"I feel the same way as any Iraqi feels - I will feel my freedom and liberation when I don't see an American stopping an Iraqi on the street," said Awatef Jwad of Baghdad.

There were no columns of tanks rolling out of Baghdad or thousands of troops marching out of other cities as the deadline approached. The U.S. military gradually has been pulling its combat forces out of Iraq's population centers for months, and they already were gone by the weekend, Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell told reporters in Washington.

But Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and other Iraqi and U.S. officials had warned of an increase in attacks around the withdrawal date as insurgents attempt to re-ignite the sectarian warfare that ravaged the country in 2006 and 2007.

Keep reading this story »


Filed under: Iraq
June 30th, 2009
10:38 AM ET

Pro-gun pastor says come armed to church

Pastor Kenneth Pagano is a gun rights advocate who encourages his parishioners to bring their firearms to church.

Pastor Kenneth Pagano is a gun rights advocate who encourages his parishioners to bring their firearms to church.

You may not think that God and guns go together, but a pastor in Kentucky certainly does. He's encouraging his congregation to embrace their Second Amendment rights by coming to church armed.

On Saturday, Pastor Kenneth Pagano sponsored an “open carry celebration” at his church. He spoke to John Roberts on CNN’s “American Morning” Tuesday.

John Roberts: A question a lot of people might have is – what do God and guns have in common?

Kenneth Pagano: Well, the idea that a deep-seated belief in God and an appreciation for firearms, which was the basis for the founding of this country, which was also settled by very religious people evidently has not - has historical precedence for not being incongruous, and we also agree with the same.

Roberts: But the question is do guns belong in church? Even in the frontier days there were many churches that said to people, “Leave your weapons outside. No firearms inside the church.”

Pagano: There were also many churches that said you can have them. There are still congregational buildings in New England that go back to the colonial eras where there are actually gun racks that are there. It was also mandated that you had to bring your firearm with you with ammunition when you went to church, if not, you would have been fined. So this is not something new. It’s new in our generation, but it's not a new concept at all. We're trying to promote responsible gun ownership, that there are community-minded, legal law-abiding citizens such as myself and others who appreciate firearms as a sports tool, but also believe in the right for self-defense and self-protection. Church is not a building. A church is a gathering of people. People have the right to defend themselves wherever they are.

Roberts: Pastor, I was doing a lot of looking around this morning at the reaction to the event you had on Saturday night and some of the critics were asking things like “Would Jesus carry a weapon?” And “What would Jesus think of a pastor who beat plow shares into swords?”

FULL POST


Filed under: Gun rights • Religion
June 30th, 2009
10:11 AM ET

Ex-con: Bernie won’t be too popular behind bars

Going from a Park Avenue luxury apartment to a federal prison is going to be quite a change for Bernard Madoff. He was sentenced yesterday to 150 years in prison. What's life going to be like for him behind bars?

Larry Levine served ten years in prison and is now a consultant for white collar criminals preparing to go to jail. He spoke to Kiran Chetry on CNN’s “American Morning” Tuesday.

Kiran Chetry: What do you fill people in on as they get ready to go to prison?

Larry Levine: Well, I do damage control. Once the judge slams down the gavel and sentences you, the lawyer has no idea what's going to happen. So I prepare people for going into custody. I teach them everything they need to know from the time they go in, until they get out. If they get in a jam while they're on the inside, their families can get a hold of me and we can straighten things out.

Now in Madoff's case, he doesn't have an out date. What, 150 years from now? So he really has nothing to look forward to. I see them possibly putting him on suicide watch and/or protective custody because people are going to want to get to him. On a lighter side, he will get about 19-and-a-half years off on good time. They will give him that even though it'll never apply.

Chetry: In a way you're saying he doesn’t have hope for an appeal or hope to get out if he does well?

Levine: You have to prove that the judge abused his discretion by sentencing him to 150 years. Well, Madoff's off the charts as far as the dollar loss and the U.S. sentencing guidelines. They could have given him 200 years, although it wouldn't really make a difference. The judge had the latitude to do that, so an appeal really is going to go nowhere.

Chetry: What's daily life going to be like for Bernard Madoff in a federal penitentiary?

FULL POST


Filed under: Controversy • Crime
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