American Morning

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November 17th, 2009
01:50 PM ET

We Listen – Your comments 11/17/2009

Editor's Note: Part two of Jim Acosta’s series on the militia movement had Tuesday’s American Morning audience evenly split on such groups’ legitimacy and relevance. Those for allowing such organizations viewed them as “misunderstood” because they provided needed assistance in emergencies. Those opposed termed militias as “dangerous whackos.”

  • Linda: On the Militia, many states have their own militia. They pick up the ball in an emergency, when or if, the national guard is elsewhere. There is a big difference between being part of a militia, and being an unbalanced person with murder in his (or her) heart. Don't start demonizing the good guys.
  • Todd: Patriots or extremists: militias are misunderstood, because there are also constitutional rights to form militias. The National Guard is considered a militia, most importantly there are State Defense Forces in most states, which are directed by their state Governors. I think if more was said about the State Defense Forces people would be more understanding about the concept of militias.
  • Orville: Concerning the feature on militias. I don't belong to one, however, I have a license to carry a concealed handgun(one of over 60,000 in the state of Arkansas alone). I don't even go out to the curb to get my mail without carrying a semi-automatic handgun. And at home, I have an even bigger handgun for home security. When the news reports children getting beaten to death or a 15 year old girl being raped for over 2 hours with multiple onlookers doing nothing, I wish that I had been there. Things would have been different. Am I a gun "nut"? No, I'm a realist.
  • Dan: Why in the world would you go out of your way to soften the image of the militia movement? How hard did you have to search to find a "reasonable" militia member? This is a dangerous movement made up of delusional people who think the government is out to take away their rights. For every "reasonable" member, there are probably a hundred skinheads, Aryan supremacists, and other assorted whackos. It is irresponsible to pander to these people.
  • Joe: The American militias that we have been seeing and hearing about on CNN are militant extremists. They say they think Obama my be dangerous. What the hell did they think about Bush and Cheney, the two most dangerous persons to walk the face of this planet since Adolph?
  • Joel: Why in the world are you featuring 100% certified paranoiacs like the Miracles? 22 guns and 8 kids?? Insanity and paranoia. Full camo and shooting trips with a 6 year old? You are aiding and abetting the right wing crazies and crypto nazis. Why not a full hour on the Aryan brotherhood or whats left of the kKan; sometimes I wonder about you people […].

What do you think of the militia movement? Continue the conversation below.

Filed under: We Listen
November 17th, 2009
09:12 AM ET

AARP: Brand-name drugs up 9% in past year

When it comes to health care reform Democrats and Republicans don't seem to agree on much. One thing they do agree on is making a new system more affordable.

While Americans wait for Washington's health care overhaul, prescription drug prices are rising faster than they have in years, and it's calling into question the drug industry's promised "partnership" on reform. CNN's Alina Cho reports.

Filed under: Health
November 17th, 2009
08:11 AM ET

Task force rejects routine mammograms for women age 40-49

A government task force is changing the guidelines for breast cancer screening, and the major medical reversal could affect millions of American women.

For years women over 40-years-old were told to get a mammogram every year because early detection saves lives. Now experts are saying they're not effective and lead to unnecessary biopsies.

Women are being told to wait until they're 50-years-old to start getting screened, leaving many scratching their heads. CNN's Kiran Chetry reports.

Read more: Task force changes mammography guidelines

Filed under: Health
November 17th, 2009
07:41 AM ET
November 17th, 2009
07:22 AM ET

Sarah Palin: 'She’s not retreating, she’s reloading'

By Nailah Ellis Timberlake

Before the release of Sarah Palin’s book on Tuesday, it was already listed as the number one bestseller on and Barnes & Noble’s online. Palin was paid an estimated $1.25 million for her memoir, "Going Rogue: An American Life," by publisher HarperCollins. She collaborated with author Lynn Vincent to completed her 423-page book in four months.

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show on Monday."]

The first stop on her multi-city book tour will be on Wednesday at a Barnes & Nobles in Kentwood, Michigan where manager Danett Mae said, “The response has been phenomenal. We’ve gotten inquiries from customers across the country and we plan to accommodate as many people as possible.”

Mae couldn’t estimate the amount of people they were expecting to come out but the hope is that everyone who lines up will be able to meet Palin and get their book signed. Currently the schedule released by the publisher shows that Palin’s book tour is only stopping in small cities throughout the country, but more cities are expected to be added at a later date.

In addition to her book tour, Sarah Palin appeared on Oprah Winfrey’s show Monday afternoon where she discussed her White House run as a vice presidential candidate, her family, her politics and her future. Many think it’s a positive and strategic move for Palin because Oprah’s selling power is unquestionable. Palin supporter and attorney Marianna Picciocchi thinks that it was an excellent idea to go on Oprah. Picciocchi said, “I’m glad she did it. It was a good idea because of widespread coverage and she got to speak on her history and what she’s done. Her track record in Alaska shows that she’s an effective leader and people will have more insight into her now.”


Filed under: Politics
November 17th, 2009
06:00 AM ET

Patriots or Extremists? Growing up in a militia

By Jim Acosta

If there's one thing militias and their critics can agree on, it's the fact that this pro-gun and anti-Obama movement is growing in the United States. That begs the question, "who are these guys?"

We try to answer that in part two of our series, "Patriots or Extremists," by going home with the leader of a militia in Michigan.

Lee Miracle may run training exercises for the Southeast Michigan Volunteer Militia once a month in a rural area outside of Flint, but he's just as busy at home. He and his wife Katrina have eight kids, and there are more than 20 guns in the house. This explains why Lee refers to the family as "Lee and Kate plus eight plus a gun rack."

Make that several gun racks. The Miracle children are very much growing up in the militia. They take part in militia training exercises, including the weapons training.

We were there when 13-year-old Megan fired off her shotgun, but even the couple's six-year-old has had her share of target practice.

Share your thoughts right here on our blog

Filed under: Patriots or Extremists