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Hardball with Chris Matthews, Transcript 04/28/15

Guests: Rev. Jesse Jackson, Michelle Bernard

CHRIS MATTHEWS, HOST: The streets will be empty, and so will the stadium. Let`s play HARDBALL. Good evening. I`m Chris Matthews in Washington. Well, tomorrow afternoon at 2:05, a statement will be made 35 miles north of here. The Baltimore Orioles of the American League will host the Chicago White Sox with no one in the grandstands. Camden Yards, one of the most classic baseball stadiums in the country, will be closed to the public. A major American city has admitted it can`t keep peace, not even at a ballpark. Whatever else this is, it`s an historic and horrific failure of politics. See those kids rioting in the streets, the police officers wary of what`s next? See the world of failure in which this is all taking place? Where are the jobs and the training for jobs, the chances for a real life in west Baltimore? What has this democratic republic done for these people who live where people had not once just hope but real jobs? Oh, yes, they did. These rowhouses we`ve been looking at were built for workers, not unemployed people, for workers to energize the city of Baltimore. The city of Baltimore was built of houses just like these so people could live near factories that now no longer exist. Are the politicians going to do something about this? Are they going to create summer jobs and education that leads to full-time jobs? Are they? Because if not, these kids` younger brothers and their kids will be hanging on the same streets the next time this city explodes. So what happens tonight? Twenty-four hours ago, west Baltimore was a scene of protests, rioting, arson, looting and chaos. More than 200 arrests last night, nearly 150 vehicle fires, and we watched them, 15 buildings set ablaze, at least 20 police officers injured, and some very seriously. A thousand National Guardsmen right now are fanned across the city of Baltimore, 400 state troopers and law enforcement officers from all the surrounding counties, 300 policemen from Pennsylvania, 150 from Jersey, 45 from here in D.C. In fact, the U.S. Capitol Police, where I once served, are in Baltimore tonight guarding government buildings.   In just the last half hour or so, or hour or so, we`ve heard from both the mayor of Baltimore and the governor of Maryland. Here they are. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MAYOR STEPHANIE RAWLINGS-BLAKE, BALTIMORE: Last night was a very rough period for our city, but today I think we saw a lot more of what Baltimore is about. We saw people coming together to reclaim our city, to clean our city and to help heal our city. I think this can be our defining moment. GOV. LARRY HOGAN (R), MARYLAND: You can`t ensure that there`s not going to be any unrest. I`m not a magician. But what I can assure you is that we will put all the resources that we have at our disposal to make sure that the disturbances don`t get out of hand and we don`t get overwhelmed, like happened last night. (END VIDEO CLIP) MATTHEWS: NBC`s Peter Alexander is with us now from Baltimore with the latest. Peter, what`s it look like compared to last night? Where are we headed? PETER ALEXANDER, NBC CORRESPONDENT: Well, Chris, that`s a good question. Where we`re headed, I think nobody really knows right now. We certainly have our fingers crossed that this will be a quieter night. And given the police presence that you just laid out, very clearly the city believes it will be a quieter night, as well. Right now, in a variety of different places across this city, there are what appear to be peaceful protests, peaceful marches taking place. There are members of the clergy meeting in a variety of areas, as well, focused on getting the message across to so many of the young men and women who were involved as looters and as part of the riots that took place here. As one person described it, this was a combustible mix of poverty, crime and hopelessness. And the hope tonight is that it certainly doesn`t see a repeat of itself. What`s striking about this spot -- I`ve been to Baltimore many times -- is behind us -- we`re right here in front of the historic City Hall. And Chris, over my shoulder, you can see the number of National Guardsmen who are now on post at that site. They expect to be here throughout this evening, as well. We heard from members of the police, as well, saying that they`re going to be enforcing this curfew that goes into effect at 10:00 o`clock tonight until 5:00 o`clock tomorrow morning. And it remains to be seen exactly how strict they will be with that enforcement, but their hope is that that sends the message to the young people tonight to stay home. MATTHEWS: Well, you know, Baltimore -- Washington is a government town, but Baltimore is a real city. It really is. And I mean that in the sense it has neighborhoods, it clearly has a culture, it has an identity going way back. I was pointing out it was the one city in the United States that had the most political conventions in history going back to the beginning of the republic.   Can you feel the different shadings of attitude as you move throughout the city tonight? Is it all west Baltimore or is the whole city on edge? ALEXANDER: Well, I think the whole city is on edge. And let`s be clear while much of the focus was in west Baltimore, the area where Freddie Gray himself was put into the back of that police van and ultimately where he died, there are areas that have pocked this entire city where there was violence but also looting. I was in east Baltimore, a different area, several miles away from where the majority of the violence took place last night, and we went into a sporting goods store. This was a family-owned business, the Levy (ph) family. They have had the property for 35 years, Chris. And when you walk into that store, the place wasn`t just vandalized, it wasn`t just ransacked, it was gutted, more than $1 million in property loss there. There were boxes strewn, shoes that were gone. The entire episode was caught on surveillance tape that this family, three brothers and their father, who have owned this place for 35 years, were at home from 10:00 o`clock last night until 7:00 this morning, watching their surveillance cameras on their computers and on their phones as they saw young men just going in and out, in and out with their property. They were devastated. They said it felt like they got punched in the gut. They were nauseous as they returned to the property today. But it wasn`t just that family that was impacted. Also, a young black woman, a woman that we interviewed by the name of Trisi Joyce (ph) -- as we hear some honking go by -- this is some young individuals honking as they pass us by right here. We`re keeping our guard out just to see exactly what the circumstances are. This appears just to be, I think, some peacefulness (ph) as they pass by City Hall. But a young woman by the name of Trisi Jones -- Joyce, excuse me -- worked in that business for five years, Chris. She is the mother of three. And she said, This isn`t hurting the Levy family, this is hurting my family, too. She`s now out of a job. MATTHEWS: Are they going to prosecute these young people? Because they have cameras on everything. And I just -- people jumping up on top of police cars -- I mean, normally, these would be serious crimes, but in this mayhem, are they going to just move on and say, We`re not going to go back and look at pictures? Do we know what`s going happen in the aftermath of all of this? ALEXANDER: It`s a real good question. It`s the question, I think, the City Hall, the mayor herself is getting a lot of questions about right now because of the language they used in describing the way they wanted to handle the situation. They said, the police chief himself, commissioner himself, said that had we handled this situation differently, given it was so many young teens, 13, 14, 15 -- if we came out there with assault rifles and the like, we would be under fire for that. MATTHEWS: I agree with that. ALEXANDER: They say the circumstances were different because of the youth of these individuals, and it`s unclear exactly what they`re going to do in terms of prosecuting them.   Again, as you hear behind us right now, over the course of the last couple minutes, we hear just loud honking just around the corner from this location. As soon as we`re done with you, we`re going to check out exactly what that`s about. But at least at this time, it appears just to be a form of a peaceful protest. MATTHEWS: Yes, and I wonder, like all of us do who think about these things, where would our kids be in that crowd? Would they go with the crowd? Kids tend to go with crowds. They don`t think individually at the age of 14 and 15. They`re moved by others. Anyway, thank you, NBC`s Peter Alexander, for a great report. Now let`s go to our star. Lester Holt is with us now from Baltimore. He`s been covering this story. Lester, give us your sense of this story as it`s developing into the evening. LESTER HOLD, ANCHOR, "NBC NIGHTLY NEWS": Well, first of all, let me set the scene. Behind me is the rubble from that community center, a church-sponsored community center, senior center that went up last night. We watched it burning throughout the night. ATF was here. They still haven`t determined if it`s related to the riots. But we`re on the east side of Baltimore versus the west side, where the bulk of the rioting you saw last night occurred. I spent most of the day over there talking to people, trying to get a sense of how does this relate to Freddie Gray. Explain the roots? What caused that eruption of violence? Of course, no one can make an excuse for it, but they can certainly try to explain the environment, an environment where more than 50 percent of the people don`t have jobs, a food desert, a place where a third of the residential housing is abandoned or empty, all the things that have fueled it. And I made a note on "NIGHTLY NEWS" a few minutes ago that a couple of people stopped me and said, Where was everybody? Where was all this attention before Freddie Gray? These issues here were bubbling for decades. And of course, it puts a spotlight, and now they are in a spotlight for all the wrong reasons in terms of what happened here. And as I was talking to a community leader today, he said, you know, no one is talking about Freddie Gray. We`re talking about the violence now. So it has shifted, certainly, the conversation. And the point being that you`ve got to get to the younger people who don`t really have a sense of the history. They don`t remember the riots here in the `60s and what it cost these communities in terms of stores and vital services that they lost.   So a lot of the older people are shaking their heads, and of course, the younger people say, Look, we`re angry over what we believe has been a pattern of neglect, a pattern of police abuse a pattern of oppression. So it`s a very multi-generational view... MATTHEWS: Yes. HOLT: ... of all that`s happening here, Chris. MATTHEWS: You know, the most -- one of the most iconic pictures last night -- because every kid growing up, especially boys, can understand what it`s like to have your mother hitting on you, hitting you on the head and saying -- trying to rip off the hoodie or whatever -- You come back home! In fact, she`s using some pretty graphic language, that woman. There she is. I mean, this is -- look what she`s doing! She`s, like, manhandling this kid! What about the generational rift? Is there one, or is it everybody realizing they live in a hell hole? Where are they on this? HOLT: Well, you know, I think that particular picture kind of pointed out something that -- you know, in the context of all the young people who were, you know, behind this violence, they look one way. But then when you see it separated as a mother and her son, trying to set that son right, you see it in a different perspective. MATTHEWS: Yes. HOLT: A lot of people say that`s what`s needed here, that they need adults. I mean, I talked to one man. He`s been in prison. He`s a recovering substance abuser. But he said, Look, I`ve got a daughter, and I`ve got to be there for her, and we don`t have enough men in this community anymore. Too many men are looked up. Too many men are dying. And he says, If more of the kids that you saw rioting yesterday had men in their life, perhaps we wouldn`t see that. I mean, all these social issues bubble up when you have something like this. Suddenly, everything comes under the microscope, and we wake up to these issues that are festering not only in communities like west Baltimore, but in communities like it all across the country.   MATTHEWS: Lester, I was just thinking those same kids at 2:00 o`clock yesterday were trying to figure out algebra. You know, they`re trying to do their homework in school. HOLT: Yes. MATTHEWS: They`re trying to -- and then an hour later, because the word got out that there`s something happening, they all got involved. Now we see a parade going on... (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: Lester Holt -- go ahead. HOLT: All right. MATTHEWS: Lester Holt, thank you so much for joining us, from "NIGHTLY NEWS." Joining me right now is civil rights leader the Reverend Jesse Jackson. He spoke at Freddie Gray`s funeral yesterday. Reverend Jackson, it is great to have you on tonight. REV. JESSE JACKSON, RAINBOW/PUSH COALITION Yes, sir. MATTHEWS: Take a couple minutes, put this all together, if you can -- if you can put this thing together. JACKSON: Well, it`s structural injustice. We`re bringing in troops but police are who -- police in Baltimore don`t have to live there, so they work there as occupiers and not as neighbors, whose children don`t go to school there, who don`t shop for groceries there. There`s 18,000 vacant homes and abandoned lots. You bail out the banks, the lot (ph) of the people who are victims of subprime lending and predatory spending. You have a case of 30 percent unemployment.   And so you just have a combination of structural injustices, and so we need to see HUD come to town, Department of Housing and Urban Development, secretary of commerce and treasury and labor and job skills training. This is time for the government to put forth a Kerner report, which is already written, and a plan for urban reconstruction. MATTHEWS: Well, let me ask you about the politicians. We`ve got a very strong black caucus in D.C. here in the Congress. They`ve represented these neighborhoods forever. They have a lock on them politically. Are they doing the job? Is the black caucus doing -- let`s start on the community level. Is anybody making enough noise... (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: ... and to the Republicans. Yes or no. JACKSON: They advocate, but the power to transfer the funds are not there. You look downtown, beautiful downtown, the riverfront, tif (ph) money, pension money, banking money, all the financial stuff is in one slot. So you have the Ravens and you have the Orioles. But what it shows when the ballpark is empty tomorrow is that whatever happens directly to one group affects the others indirectly. You`re either going to have an even playing field or no playing field at all. MATTHEWS: But you know leverage. You understand leverage. Why is there no leverage from the urban population and their elected officials that has influence? I mean, every presidential election is decided by the Electoral College. Every Electoral College majority comes from the big cities, especially when the Democrats win. There`s a lot of power there. You know that. You know it better than I know it. JACKSON: It certainly puts a lot of weight on -- none of the candidates have been discussing or even reacted yet to the crisis of the urban policy of (ph) poverty. I mean, poverty itself, Chris, is a weapon of mass destruction. You have food deserts and health deserts. MATTHEWS: Yes. JACKSON: Even when they begin to rebuild, these kids don`t have the trade skills to rebuild where they`ve lived. I`ve walked down the streets in Baltimore just earlier today and see blocks and blocks of boarded houses when there should be windowpanes, jobs in removing lead paint, jobs removing wood and putting up windowpanes.   If you just have a plan, a commitment to reconstruction, you`ll put people back to work, and people really want to work. But some police actually live as far as Pennsylvania, as opposed to living -- I think residence is important. Police and firemen must be seen as neighbors, not as occupiers. MATTHEWS: Well, let`s talk a little bit about the incident that ignited all this, Freddie Gray`s death. What do you -- do you have any information on it? Are the police -- are they slow-walking this report? Or what do you know that other people don`t know, or is it just as frustrating for you to find out what happened in that police car? JACKSON: Well, he is not the first. He is the 111th victim of police killings since 2010, for example. He`s number 111. The difference is the camera, not the character. The police blue code or flu (ph). They will not tell -- police will not police police because they`re afraid of each other. They`re afraid if they expose somebody, that they will miss an appointment or they`ll miss a promotion. They could get hurt. They`ll take the bad assignments. So the corruption of the police department`s culture is a factor in this. Police know that this guy used excessive force before. He has a very bad reputation in the neighborhood. The guy saw him, and he started running. MATTHEWS: Yes. JACKSON: The guy -- the police walk him in as pallbearers (INAUDIBLE) with a broken spine. It`s taken three weeks to tell us what happened. You don`t have the capacity to break your spine. He was killed by police. And it will be interesting to see what the report will show on this coming Friday because that report will determine the next level of this tragic situation. MATTHEWS: Well, how do you bring that up to date, Reverend? Because you`ve been involved in civil rights advocacy since the `60s, but these police forces are pretty well integrated. There`s a lot of black officers out there on the street, involved in these cases. You can`t just say it`s white hate people -- hate black people. What is causing this? Is it police are afraid of these kids? Are they angry because they`re afraid? Are they angry because of the statistics? What generates this constant problem of police shootings that you talked about? And you`ve got the numbers. JACKSON: Well, the police... MATTHEWS: Why? JACKSON: ... problem tends to be a culture. For example, once you join the culture, you want to get promoted. You don`t want the worst detail. You want to be accepted in the group. It has its own culture.   But Chris, I want to go a step further. Yesterday around 2:00 o`clock, while in the funeral, we got the notice on social media that -- that there had been a threat on the police by some gangs coming together. MATTHEWS: The Crips and Bloods. Yes. Go ahead. JACKSON: They immediately cracked down, closed businesses, cut off public transport. So when those kids got out of school yesterday, they had no public transportation. MATTHEWS: I know that. JACKSON: There was no plan of exit for them, so they got out of school, thousands of them with no way to get home. They just joined the flow. So that was a very strategic mistake there. MATTHEWS: Right. So I knew about that at the time. I wish the police had known about how they were going to screw it up. They let the kids out of school because of the fear about the gangs. The kids are sitting there. Then they make sure the kids can`t get home, so they gather together and they`re led by the worst kids in the crowd, probably. Reverend Jesse Jackson, it`s great to have you on, sir, with your knowledge and history here. Thank you. JACKSON: Thank you, Chris. MATTHEWS: Hundreds of people are gathered outside the CVS drug store in west Baltimore. We watched that place get looted and burned last night, but we have been watching a parade now, a peaceful protesters marching, and in fact, dancing on the streets. MSNBC`s Thomas Roberts joins us now from Baltimore -- Thomas. THOMAS ROBERTS, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: Chris, I think you can see and hear me right now. I`m sorry...   MATTHEWS: Yes, I can. ROBERTS: ... I was talking to one of the people that had come out today. Darryl (ph)... (CROSSTALK) ROBERTS: Darryl, you were talking about the fact that this is a line of people behind us that have gotten -- it`s a lineup in front of the police, and right behind them is the police front. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right. And so what we`re trying to do is to stop any of the agitators that are coming out and want to irk (ph) the police on, myself and fraternity brothers and others out here, just trying to assist the mayor and to stop the violence, to stop the egging on of the police. They`re out here trying to do the job. And so they (INAUDIBLE) you know, some folks have decided, We`re going to take this as an opportunity to destroy our community. Hurt people hurt people, and there`s a lot of people that`s hurt in the community. So what we`re trying to do is -- to hear them, but there`s a right and wrong way to do things. ROBERTS: Do you think the curfew will work tonight at 10:00 o`clock for the city? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I hope so. It is my prayer. We`ve been praying all day that the curfew will work. So hopefully, with the additional police presence and other supports (ph) that we have in the city that it`ll work tonight. So you know, I hope that they will treat folks with dignity and respect and urge them to get off the street. ROBERTS: There were some bad actors that we all witnessed last night, the world has seen. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. ROBERTS: So how is the city trying to reclaim the narrative?   UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, again, this is Baltimore. You hear bands playing. You have all kinds of folks that are out here, community activists, pastors, fraternities. Everybody is out here tonight just trying to make sure that we self-police ourselves. And so hopefully, on Friday, we`ll get some answers as to what happened to brother Gray, and we can begin to heal, because a lot of times, there`s injustice that happens. We don`t want to have the tough conversations about race, racism, and all the other isms. And only until we have type of conversations will this community really begin to heal and also to move towards forgiveness. ROBERTS: You feel there`s an urgency that`s coming for May 1st, for the Friday deadline of when they`re supposed to reveal results of what happened with Freddie Gray. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, man, the timeline -- as each tick on the clock ticks, there`s definitely urgency that we need to get to the bottom and give this city answers because they`re crying out for answers right now. And so hopefully, on Friday, the mayor and police commissioner and others that`s going to make that decision on what happened, we`ll get those answers. ROBERTS: But do you think that the city can keep itself calm enough between now and then? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, we -- I don`t know. The honest answer to you is I don`t know. And it is my hope that we will be able to hold the composure and keep the city together. I was born and raised here, and so I don`t want my city to burn. And so that`s why you see pastors, other community-based organizations out here, community-based organizations, fraternities, sororities. We`re all out here just trying to make sure that we do our part because we`re not going to leave after the sun goes down. We`ll be out here. ROBERTS: All right, so, Darryl (ph), thank you very much. So, Chris, you`re hearing this is the tone from most of the people that we have had an opportunity to speak with today about taking back the narrative, that they aren`t going to let a few bad actors overtake the story of what this is really about, about Freddie Gray and about finding out what exactly happened to this 25-year-old man after he was taken into arrest on April the 12th and then died a week later. The intersection where we are now at North and Pennsylvania, it was much more crowded earlier. The crowd has shifted a little more to our left down this way. As you can hear, a band is coming through, but there`s been a little thinning, almost a low tide of the evening. We`re in front of the CVS that was burned out. But the curfew goes is going to go into effect coming up tonight at 10:00 p.m. Most people that I have had the opportunity to speak to feel that that curfew is needed and necessary, and they are OK with being home by 10:00 p.m. -- Chris, back to you. MATTHEWS: Thank you so much, Thomas Roberts, for a great interview with that fellow.   Anyway, NBC`s Gabe Gutierrez is on the streets where protesters have gathered. Gabe, fill us in. GABE GUTIERREZ, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: Hey there, Chris. Good evening. I`m not too far where Thomas just was, but if you can see behind me, there are hundreds of people that have just come up on this intersection. This is the intersection of West North and Pennsylvania, where that CVS was burned and looted yesterday. The crowd now moving into the intersection. Over here on this side, that`s where police in riot gear had been for much of the afternoon. There had been a larger crowd there earlier this afternoon. That crowd moved out and moved to a different location. We heard that they were marching towards a park. At least some of them have returned here. And now you see the music and these protesters, these peaceful protesters right now. I want to bring in Anthony, who is a resident here of Baltimore. Anthony, tell me, what do you think when you see this? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, we`re here just to show that we can be peaceful at the same time of getting our point across. We need answers. But at the same time, yes, last night was not Baltimore City. Last night was anger and pain showing up in one night, but we`re here to show that you we`re here to be peaceful and at the same time we still need answers, sir. GUTIERREZ: Anthony, I have been hearing over and over again today that what people wanted to shift the focus back to Freddie Gray. Do you think that that focus -- how much was it lost last night?   UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Last night, the protesters -- the protesters or the riots and the -- quote, unquote -- "thugs" were sensationalized, when, at the end of the day it`s all about Freddie. At the end of the day, it`s all about these mishaps that keep happening. At end of the day, it`s all about the disenfranchised youth that`s not being heard, sir. We need to be heard, and we`re showing it right now in a peaceful manner. GUTIERREZ: How long have you lived in Baltimore? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My entire life. I`m from East Baltimore, sir. GUTIERREZ: How much does it hurt to see those images last night? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It pains me. But at the same time, it pains me to know that a life is missing. It pains me that we destroyed our city, but at the same time, we need answers and we really -- we really want -- we need answers. GUTIERREZ: So this protest right now is peaceful, has been peaceful throughout the afternoon. What happens at 10:00 with this curfew? What do you think will happen? Do you think that this crowd will disperse? Do you think it should disperse? Or do you think that the curfew should not have been imposed? What are your thoughts on that? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I understand why they implemented the curfew, but at the same time, I guarantee you there will be a couple knuckleheads. In every religion, every sect, every race, there are knuckleheads, but at the same time, focus on what`s going on right now, hundreds of people out here showing us how to do it correctly. Yes, I think we should disperse at 10:00 because that`s the law. And I don`t want to see anybody in any more pain. But I totally understand a the people who will not obey the law. But they should. GUTIERREZ: And, Anthony, one last thing before I let you go.   Earlier today, I saw some residents here. They were walking up to the police and thanking them. Some were thanking them for keeping the peace and for -- now we`re hearing this police helicopter overhead. They are asking people to get off the road. OK, well, Anthony, earlier today, we did hear people thanking some of the police officers, saying thank you for keeping the peace. Others felt that the police presence, at least here in this neighborhood, shutting the street down, that it was a little too much. What do you think? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think that the people who thanked the police officers needed to, because yesterday was a little bit over the top. But at the same time, this is just pain being released. This isn`t just a week of -- weeks of turmoil. This is decades of mistreatment to minorities. It`s not a black thing. It`s not a race thing. It`s -- it`s the police department treating American citizens. We`re all humans. GUTIERREZ: Anthony, thank you so much for talking to us. We really appreciate you taking the time. So, Chris, the crowd here has gathered and dispersed just a little bit ago. Now it`s back here, several hundred strong again, very peaceful protests for now, a lot of people wondering what will happen though at 10:00, when this curfew takes effect -- Chris, back to you. MATTHEWS: Yes, great. Thanks so much, Gabe Gutierrez. Let me go and bring in some of my people here, my friends. We have all been sitting watching every single thing since 7:00 now, Michael Steele, of course, and Michelle and Eugene Robinson. Eugene, this is -- this is a -- I kept thinking of Ralph Ellison and "Invisible Man," like, who is paying to West Baltimore until now? EUGENE ROBINSON, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, exactly. I spent a few hours in West Baltimore earlier today right at that intersection to see, you know, where the CVS was burned out. That`s a busy place, right? That`s not -- that intersection is by far not the worst of Baltimore. It`s kind of a transit hub and there are a lot of small businesses.   But I parked about, you know, two blocks away in front of a row of just derelict, bombed-out row houses. MATTHEWS: Yes. ROBINSON: So, you know, Baltimore can switch just like that. And it was a reminder of just how depressed the city is. This was a huge, bustling, thriving city when I was a kid. MATTHEWS: Yes. ROBINSON: And its population has been close to cut in half probably. It`s certainly gone way down. It`s -- it`s amazing. Right across North Avenue from that CVS is a branch of the Enoch Pratt public library. MATTHEWS: I have been there, great, great library. (CROSSTALK) ROBINSON: One of the great public libraries in America. MATTHEWS: Yes, it is.   ROBINSON: Completely untouched. MATTHEWS: They respected that. ROBINSON: Absolutely unscathed, not -- and open for business today. MATTHEWS: I love that. ROBINSON: Which I thought was fascinating. MATTHEWS: Every time you have a book to sell, you go there. I know that. (LAUGHTER) ROBINSON: Oh, yes. (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: Michelle, I was -- I was thinking about this, and even in the roughest neighborhoods, there`s families and there`s a mother with a little bit of income and maybe not a husband around. MICHELLE BERNARD, FOUNDER, BERNARD CENTER FOR WOMEN, POLITICS AND POLICY: Yes.   MATTHEWS: And they got to keep life. BERNARD: They got to keep life. And I will tell you, a few years ago, I spent a lot of time going from neighborhood to neighborhood in Baltimore talking to mothers in East Baltimore about what their hopes and dreams and aspirations were for their children. And despite all of the stereotypes that people are accustomed to, I didn`t meet any single individual who didn`t say, I want my children to get out of here, to have a better life than me, to have an education. But the question then becomes, is the American dream, is it failing? MATTHEWS: Yes. BERNARD: Is our promise of equality for all failing? And how do we get to a point in time where we can make sure that everyone has equal access to an education? MATTHEWS: But, you know, in other ethnic groups, they escape Brooklyn. From the time they are 15, all these guys, you read their books and their movies, I can`t wait to get out of this hellhole. BERNARD: Yes. MATTHEWS: And they go live in Michigan. They go to the University of Michigan. They go to University of Wisconsin. They go to University of Tennessee. They go to university -- these guys go to University of Utah. Just blacks can`t get away, can they? Is that part of it? They get stuck in the old neighborhoods? (CROSSTALK)   BERNARD: It`s not that you can`t get away. We have a conundrum in this country where we`re dealing with the sins of the past and the sins of today. MATTHEWS: I mean out of a bad neighborhood. I know. BERNARD: And there are people who cannot escape poverty because there are no jobs. There`s no education. Where are you going to go? MATTHEWS: Nowhere to go when you -- OK. (CROSSTALK) ROBINSON: And, Chris, remember, a lot of African-Americans did -- did get away. BERNARD: Yes. ROBINSON: But that`s part of the -- that`s part of the problem. The sort of professional class, the educated class of people... MATTHEWS: They split. ROBINSON: ... who had the opportunity to leave, many of them left.   MATTHEWS: The A-students. ROBINSON: Exactly, exactly. (CROSSTALK) ROBINSON: People prepared to take advantage of... (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: Let`s go -- let me go back to my Marxist analysis of things, because I`m not a communist, but I do believe economics explains a lot. You`re looking at me. I know that look. (LAUGHTER) MATTHEWS: You know, these houses, these row houses were sturdily built, most of them. They`re like in D.C. They`re built for the ages, these row houses, good housing stock. They were built for workers` families. They were not built for unemployed people on unemployment -- on unemployment or on welfare. The people that live there don`t have the job opportunities that people used to live there have. And that`s a fact. And something`s got to be done with summer jobs, real jobs, training. You talk to people like Mayor Nutter of Philly, they wish they had the money to do this, to train people, so they can move on. MICHAEL STEELE, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, a big part of this, a big part of frustration that touches on what was just said is the economics.   Underlying all of this is Baltimore trying to emerge into the 21st century better, bigger, stronger than its past. And the reality of it is as they have pushed that development east, and I served on the East Baltimore Development... (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: You mean the harbor. STEELE: Yes, heading east out, Hopkins and all the corporate interests had begun to redevelop and redesign that area. The one question I asked in my very first meeting as lieutenant governor, as chair of that committee, was, so what happens to the 75-year- old grandmother when we redevelop this area? What happens to the house that she`s been in for the last 45 or 50 years? That balance is the one that... MATTHEWS: It gets gentrified. And she can`t afford to live there. STEELE: She gets gentrified. And this is where it becomes generational, because you have these 16-, 17-year-old kids having watched their parents and grandparents get pushed out and pushed to the side. And their frustration is rooted in that. ROBINSON: And I heard a lot of people talking about this morning, actually. I heard people talking about Freddie Gray, about police violence and about gentrification and about... (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: Gene, let`s talk 14th Street in D.C.; 14th Street was bombed out because of Martin Luther King`s assassination. So, it was torched and for the middle-class and working-class black people to live there, it was hell on wheels.   And then now the whites have moved in, nothing -- I mean, it`s economic development, but pushing out people. BERNARD: Well, when I was in -- a student at Howard University, that whole neighborhood, 14th Street, that area, you didn`t walk the streets of D.C., even as a student at Howard. It`s completely down. ROBINSON: Well, you might run. (LAUGHTER) ROBINSON: You might run those streets, but you would not walk them. (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: When I saw "The Godfather" at the Republic Theatre on 14th and U, I was the one white guy in... (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: When they made that comment about blacks in that movie -- remember that one? ROBINSON: Yes. (CROSSTALK)   MATTHEWS: Oh, yes, you remember it. (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: That`s when I wanted to get out of there. (LAUGHTER) MATTHEWS: And, anyway, still ahead, the unrest in Baltimore is a test of political leadership for local leaders, don`t you think, and national leadership alike, don`t you think? And back with more on how we continue to watch these parades of protests. It looks pretty good right now. Last night, it was rioting and tonight it`s dancing and almost cheerleading here. It`s a mixed bag, of course, tonight. These are -- look like regular neighborhood people who have come out of all ages, not just kids, and that`s a good sign, when the parents are out. This is HARDBALL, the place for politics. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) MATTHEWS: You`re watching these incredible pictures of parades, of course, the excitement and positivity of some of this here, as the bands are on the streets of Baltimore tonight and people are taking to the streets. But, look, it`s a lot of different age groups. It`s not a bunch of kids running wild. It seems to be socially positive, from what we`re watching so far. Let`s be honest about it. This is like a block party, is what it looks like. Well, anyway, the curfew in Baltimore goes into effect tonight at 10:00. And that`s serious business. Illegal for anyone of any age. They have long had a curfew for kids under 14, but this is everybody has to be off the streets by 10:00. And we`re learning right now about protests, actually a protest group. It seems like an organized group, peaceful group heading toward the Baltimore Inner Harbor, which is the new development has been over the last couple of decades.   For more on that, let`s check in with Ron Allen, who joins us by phone -- Ron. RON ALLEN, NBC CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Chris. Yes, we`re down near City Hall, not far from the Inner Harbor area. And there`s a group of, oh, about 100 people or so who are converging there. The area is very barricaded off. There are a lot of police. It`s almost like a staging area. And we went behind where the crowd was and we could see some of the police operations happening. And we saw a line of perhaps several dozen officers with riot gear sort of moving into position just in case. Right now, things are very calm. It`s not yet nightfall here, and it all seems to be going well. Of course, this is the countdown to the curfew. But this area is very barricaded, a lot of police on alert, just making sure of things right now, though. MATTHEWS: What age group is it? Is it a mixed age group or is it kids? Is it adults? ALLEN: Yes, younger people, it seems, for the most part, not adults, younger people. They have been walking into this area. We heard the reports of crowds moving towards the Inner Harbor area, and we have been trying to get a grasp of what`s going on downtown. I got to tell you, downtown is very quiet. There`s not a lot of activity going on. I think a lot of these businesses are shutting down. We know the Orioles game was postponed, so there won`t be that crowd down here. A lot of people I think are just trying to get out of town and get home and get out of way of anything that might happen down here. Last night, when we were down here, downtown, it was like a ghost town and I think that is going to happen again. But, again, the police here, it`s a very significant police presence. There are a lot of government buildings down here. Police headquarters is not far. And, of course, the Inner Harbor, which this city is famed for, is not far away. Last night, we watched that senior center that was under construction burning. And in the distance, you could see downtown Baltimore. So a lot of concern about where all this might move, if it moves tonight, and if it grows, but right now, it seems under control, and the police are watching it very, very closely, a lot of helicopters flying overhead as well, keeping track of things MATTHEWS: OK.   ALLEN: And you might hear in the background some sirens as there -- some sirens, as there`s more police activity just moving into position -- Chris. MATTHEWS: OK, thank you so much, NBC`s Ron Allen, who is on the scene now down at the Inner Harbor. And this -- during this time of turmoil, elected officials are facing a test of leadership, of course. The city`s mayor, Stephanie Rawlings- Blake, has been criticized for remarks she made, perhaps by accident, over the weekend, in which she appeared to signal that law enforcement intentionally allowed demonstrators to become violent in a certain area. Here she is. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) STEPHANIE RAWLINGS-BLAKE (D), MAYOR OF BALTIMORE, MARYLAND: I have made it very clear that I worked with the police and instructed them to do everything that they could to make sure that the protesters were able to exercise their right to free speech. It`s a very delicate balancing act, because while we tried to make sure that they were protected from the cars and the other things that were going on, we also gave those who wished to destroy space to do that as well. (END VIDEO CLIP) MATTHEWS: Well, since then, Rawlings-Blake has tried to clarify those remarks. Here she is. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) RAWLINGS-BLAKE: Listen, I`m going to protect people`s right to protest. But the fact that people exploited that does not mean that I -- I do not have an obligation to protect people`s right to protest. I never said, nor would I ever say that we are giving people space to destroy our city, so my words should not be twisted.   (END VIDEO CLIP) MATTHEWS: Well, Baltimore City Councilman Carl Stokes criticized the mayor to "The Washington Post" saying: "She wasn`t acting like we were in an emergency situation." Well, Chuck Todd is moderator of "Meet the Press" and political director for NBC News, of course -- or NBC News. Thank you so much for being here, Chuck. I have to say the beat that I cover and you cover most of the time, which is politics, you just wonder, where are the Senate candidates tonight in the state of Maryland? CHUCK TODD, MODERATOR, "MEET THE PRESS": Sure. MATTHEWS: Where are the people that normally rush to get to the cameras? If seems it seems to me they don`t want to be on camera right now. Just that`s my estimate of the thing right now. Your thoughts? TODD: Well, it`s an interesting way to put it. And, by the way, we just saw a parade of about 60 cars of what appears to be residents just standing up in their car through their sunroofs, holding up their hands, honking their horns, heading towards downtown, just something worth keeping track of and worth following. But, look, to your other question, I did run into -- for what it`s worth, Chris, I ran into Martin O`Malley over here around the corner about a half-hour ago. He`s been driving around the city. He`s, of course, former mayor, former governor. I don`t know whether he was looking for TV cameras or not. I didn`t - - he didn`t necessarily seem overly anxious to go to -- but I think he would have gotten in front of a camera. I just look at it in a larger sense here.   To hear the president today -- and he was very passionate and spoke about it for 15 minutes, but he ended his comments that came across a little bit exasperated, as if, you know, we have tried to do a lot of these programs, but there`s only so much you can do. And, you know what, it`s up to the public to try to do more and to try to create more -- and it just struck me as like, well, should the president use the symbolism of his presidency a little bit more? He`s always been hesitant to do that in incidents like this. He never walked the streets of Ferguson, never did go down to Sanford, Florida, or North Charleston, or does he walk the streets in Baltimore here when things calm down and talk to small business owners? MATTHEWS: Yes. TODD: I think there`s something to be said about that as only being a positive, not a negative especially if he`s trying to bring attention to the needs and the plight, because as you pointed out, I talked to the pastor here of this church. This is 50 years of this. This corner here behind me that burned yesterday, I was told it burned 50 years ago in `68. So -- MATTHEWS: Yes. TODD: -- you know, this isn`t a new problem. MATTHEWS: Well, you know, most people they go through a tough neighborhood just wish they could get through it faster, let`s be honest about it, because you don`t want to get stop if you have flat tire (ph) -- TODD: They speed through a neighborhood, right. MATTHEWS: That`s the problem. Here`s my question about jobs. Those homes were built, those homes in that neighborhood were built for factory workers, for people to work. They weren`t built for the unemployed or the welfare purse. They were built for the workers. But the jobs that the workers once had in those neighborhoods are gone now and we can cry about the trade deals and all that, but the fact is kids are growing up with two routes to go, really, really. One route if they are "A" students and there aren`t many of them, "A" students they get to be professors, I`m sorry, teachers, they get out, they go become a doctor or lawyer, they split.   The other route is a "C" student, what`s he got facing him? Especially the boy who becomes a man -- the drug trade. That`s all there is. That`s the only business plan floating in his direction. They don`t have the local factory jobs that my uncle had, my grand pop had when they lived in a city. There`s a factory job within two subway stops. They are not there anymore. And so, I -- I remember Rahm Emanuel used to say, don`t let a crisis go unexploited. We`ve got a crisis. Who is going to exploit it, except the kids causing trouble? (CROSSTALK) TODD: Right, that`s my point. I think that`s what, you know, use this moment, if you want to bring attention of how you`re going to get real investment in urban communities, that isn`t just what you talked about on the panel earlier, which isn`t just about gentrification that`s essentially pushes poor people out of neighborhoods and makes it too expensive for them to live here, but actually figure out urban renewal that brings new jobs here, invest in the education system. I mean, ultimately -- look, politicians can`t create jobs. The biggest myth -- mythology you`ll always here in the campaign is about how some politician creating this job. Politicians don`t create jobs, but they can invest in better education, better local education, better access to community college, things like that, and, yes, safer communities. And in order to create the environment that allows for -- look, if somebody wants to get an education and get out, that`s fine or to get an education and find out that there`s something to do right here in Baltimore. Look, I think the frustrating, you`re a Philly guy. Philadelphia`s rebuilt itself, refashioned itself, Washington, D.C. has. For some reason, Baltimore`s been behind sort of the East Coast urban renewal -- and I think there`s a lot of reasons for that. MATTHEWS: Chuck Todd, great having you on. We`ll see you on "Meet This Press" this Sunday. Joining me right now is the host of "ALL IN", my subsequent colleague after me every night, Chris Hayes. He joins us from outside that CVS that was set afire last night. So, Chris, same name as me, what are you learning that we didn`t know last night? What`s it feel like to be on that site that we watched last night for hours together? CHRIS HAYES, "ALL IN" HOST: You know, it`s -- it reminds me of the Thursday after Michael Brown was killed which was the -- the first night after two -- two consecutive nights of rioting, two consecutive nights of not even rioting so much as massive police presence, tear gassing, massive amounts of arrests, huge, huge tactical vehicles. And on that nurse night, the fever kind of broke. Ron Johnson took over, and there was this kind of almost release of cathartic energy in the air. It felt like a block party. It felt like some kind of neighborhood festival, and that`s what it feels like right now.   I mean, frankly, you`ve got people black and white, young and old, men and women, across different ages, you`ve got step groups out here, you`ve got drummers, you had a second line that had come out with a brass band. So, there`s been a huge kind of boisterous atmosphere here that I feel like is a representation of people feeling a real intense sense of ownership of this neighbor. I mean, there`s tremendous local pride here, a lot of frustration, a lot of anger at the cops, a lot of anger at the mayor, and the governor and the members of the city council and the entire political class, but fundamentally a very deep loyalty, a very, very intense defensiveness over what this neighborhood is and who lives here. MATTHEWS: Well, you know, it reminds me an old phrase of Nixon, the silent majority. I mean, that neighborhood, instead of locking their doors tonight, maybe it`s the weather. Tell me why you think they are out rather than at home with the door locked. Because they had so much trouble last night, you`d think they would be hovering in the living room instead of out in the streets dancing. (CROSSTALK) MATTHEWS: These people don`t look happy, but they don`t look exactly intimidated. HAYES: Well, I mean, I think that`s the point. I think there was a real concerted effort. I mean, let`s remember, this area right around here burned down in 1968 and it burned for two weeks and it burned for two weeks and Spiro Agnew called in the National Guard, as you know, Chris, and you wrote about this period. He called the National Guard that made him a national star, he would be on the ticket based on his performance during those riots. I mean, people remember, this neighborhood had really burned and burned for two weeks and it was pretty grisly. There was a real determination and nothing has settled yet, this is only the second night. MATTHEWS: Yes. HAYES: It`s the first night after last night`s riots -- a real determination starting first thing in the morning to make today different. You saw elders out here and preachers and people in the crowd trying to manage the young people. That has been the theme throughout the entire day. MATTHEWS: OK. Chris Hayes, thanks so much for reporting. "ALL IN" coming up right after this. Let me go to Gene on this.   You and I have been through this -- EUGENE ROBINSON, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes. MATTHEWS: -- in `68. You`ve been writing about this practically since then. ROBINSON: Yes. MATTHEWS: You know, what`s coming to your head now? ROBINSON: Well, you know -- what is old is new again, right? MATTHEWS: Yes, yes. ROBINSON: The -- the echoes, the history`s echoes are very strong. I come back to something that Chuck Todd said about Baltimore. Baltimore is 40 miles up the road from the headquarters of the U.S. government and almost more important the headquarters of political media in this country. MATTHEWS: Yes. ROBINSON: It`s on the Acela corridor. There`s an opportunity perhaps to bring a kind of -- a degree of attention to these urban problems in Baltimore that may not have been there with St. Louis, may not have been there with some of these other cases. MATTHEWS: Yes.   ROBINSON: So -- so, you know, I think chuck makes a good point. This could be a moment to be seized. MATTHEWS: It`s a real city. I don`t want anybody to feel bad about that part. It`s culture. It`s a real city. ROBINSON: Oh, absolutely. MATTHEWS: You go and don`t feel like you do in D.C. sometimes, downtown D.C. sort of transients and business and politics. This feels like Baltimore. MICHELLE BERNARD, BERNARD CENTER: Well, just looking at the pictures, you can see, you can feel it. I`m looking at that and I`m thinking about Barbara Jordan`s old statement that there`s no law or executive order that can force us to be a national community, but we can do it as individuals and that`s what we`re seeing now. MATTHEWS: Baltimore, pronounced Baltimore. Baltimore Colts. Much more ahead from Baltimore. We`ll be back with the protests. They don`t look that bad right now. We`ll see as 10:00 arrives, and just a little over two hours before the curfew, as I said, goes into effect. And this is HARDBALL, the place for politics. (COMMERCIAL BREAK) (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JAY MORRISON, COMMUNITY LEADER: I love my city. I love the people that live here.   REPORTER: You sound pained, even this morning. MORRISON: I -- I am. I am. I am. I just want peace. Just, everybody. Just, this is not the way. (END VIDEO CLIP) MATTHEWS: That was face of pain, wasn`t it? Welcome back to HARDBALL. Baltimore residents are trying to take back their city tonight. They`re out on the streets tonight in a very almost merry way in some cases, trying to bring back peace to the streets. Let`s go back right now to NBC`s Peter Alexander. He`s down at city hall in Baltimore, where protesters have gathered. Peter, what kind of a protest does it look like right now? PETER ALEXANDER, NBC NEWS: Yes, Chris, the protesters wrapped up in this spot literally within the last five minutes in the commercial break. We saw several hundred people marching here. They came several miles from where Freddie Gray was picked up earlier this month and lost his life in police custody right now. I`m joined by one of the men who organized this. This is Jay Morrison. Jay, I appreciate you`re being with us right now. I want to get a sense from you -- you came down as a community organizer because you said the priority was to put the energy that you witnessed last night to good use. What are you trying to accomplish?   MORRISON: Absolutely, we want to organize the energy. So, we know our youth are -- the energy in our youth a revolution (ph). We want to draw global eyes on the injustices faced by not just Freddie Gray but many African-Americans in America. So, we want the world to see that our experience here is hurting us. It`s different. ALEXANDER: But as you said, all it takes is one person acting out to get these awful headlines and your priority is much greater than that. MORRISON: Yes, as you see, we have a great turnout. We marched several miles, hundreds of us and if our community leaders step up which is why I`m here, right, this is a new generation. The day of Al and those guys have done their due diligence, their work. For us, it`s time for us to step up, the next generation. I don`t want us burning buildings, causing distractions. I want to keep the focus of the world on the injustices of Freddie Gray, the six officers who know what happened to him and no one arrested, who are on leave now right getting pay, and the many other injustices and the back lack of independence for African-Americans in America. ALEXANDER: Is this going to be peaceful tonight? MORRISON: We`re rallying. Go to join We`re keeping a close knit on all of our constituents. And we were trying to keep it as peaceful as possible. I cannot control every human being and their action. But YMC Community Coalition, which you can find at, we`re about rallying people and organizing energy. ALEXANDER: Jay, appreciate it. Nice to meet you. Be safe, be peaceful, all right. MORRISON: Yes. ALEXANDER: Thank you very much. MORRISON: All lives matter.   ALEXANDER: As they`ve been chanting all day here and all evening here, Chris -- black lives matter, all lives matter. That was the message as they arrived with their fists in the air just outside city hall adjacent to all these National Guard members who`ve been holding this place as their post over the course of this day. There was a news conference that police held within the last several minutes. They talked about their desire to enforce that curfew tonight. It goes into effect two hours from now at 10:00. They say the curfew can be enforced at the discretion of officers. If you`re wandering around, you could be taken in. It is a criminal charge. You could be spending the night in police custody. They are serious about this. They say there are concerns, because in pockets of this city, they say the numbers are growing and in the words of one of the leaders of the local police department here in Baltimore, they say they`re increasingly angry and increasingly frustrated and their desire is that they don`t want to see a repeat of what happened here last night. MATTHEWS: Well said, that`s for that great report. Let`s go right now to MSNBC`s Joy Reid. She`s at the town hall meeting. She`s been covering that now since 7:00. It`s at the Empowerment Temple in Baltimore. Joy, nothing yet. What has happened there so far tonight? JOY REID, MSNBC NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Chris, I can tell you it`s a packed house here at the Empowerment Temple which is pastored by Reverend Jamal Bryant, and he, of course, is the pastor who preached Freddie Gray`s funeral. And this is one of the churches in the community, Chris, that opened its doors to some of the thousands and thousands of kids who were forced to stay home from school today. So, this church has been up and running since early this morning feeding kids. They also had a training session for high school students about 300 students came out to learn nonviolent civil activism and nonviolent resistance. They learned that from Ben Jealous, former NAACP president. Now, there is a packed house behind me, a town hall going on. It started with an interfaith prayer, Jewish, Muslim, as well as Christian prayer. So, this community is, as Chris Hayes said earlier, trying to take back the community. Retake the momentum here and really sending a message of unity and of getting together to do more than just improve police relations but also to improve the job situation, the economic situation. They want more from their leadership and I think even with the protests that we heard were coming down Primrose Avenue, which is right outside this church tonight, they are hoping for the best and expecting the best because they`re saying that they are taking control.   MATTHEWS: Thank you so much, Joy. We got to go right now to Toure, who`s right in the middle of a protest developing there. Toure, can you tell us what`s happening? TOURE, MSNBC`S "THE CYCLE": Yes, Chris, it`s pretty extraordinary scene going on. A man had a seizure in the midst of what was a marching band performance. And the police moved through in a formation, but it was to pick up the man who had a seizure. Now, they`re moving back. People jumped in front of the police at certain points and other people ran and grabbed them in a bear hug and threw them out of the way, and then were shaking hands with the police as they were trying to take care of the man who was having a seizure. Now they`re moving back to their formation that they were in before near Pennsylvania Avenue, right near where the CVS was looted. Pretty extraordinary situation of the cops trying to move in and take care of somebody who had gotten hurt in the midst of all this sort of peaceful celebrating and they`re just trying to out here show that this is not -- this is the Baltimore that they believe they are, not the Baltimore they say that we`ve been showing. Pretty extraordinary situation out here, Chris. MATTHEWS: Well, tell me about the crowd because you`ve opened the door for us. Looks to me from the crowd it`s almost like a block party. I mean, people are out there if not in a merry mood, certainly in a confident mood. They`re on the streets. The streets aren`t run by the young kids, some of them causing trouble. It`s just profound to me they were so ready to get out and be community leaders tonight, when they wouldn`t have done this a week ago. TOURE: Well, I mean, I wasn`t here. I don`t know what they would have done a week ago, but this has definitely been somewhat of a block party kind of atmosphere. Something of a joyous moment or at least an attempt to have a joyous moment within what is clearly a tense situation, what is clearly a situation where people have a lot on their minds, a lot on their souls. But they also wanted to show the world and show themselves that there is another part of Baltimore that is joyous, that is enjoying the moment, that is still happy and proud to be Baltimoreans. But that said, it is definitely a tense situation with cops all around, and people with a lot on their minds. MATTHEWS: OK.   TOURE: And people with talking about Freddie Gray quite a lot. MATTHEWS: Thank you. Toure, great reporting. What a scene to be on. Let me go back to the panel now -- Gene, Michelle, and Michael. Last thoughts, in that order. ROBINSON: Well, let`s hope it`s a quiet night in Baltimore. Situations tend to turn, often turn when it gets dark. So, we`ll wait. BERNARD: I`m hoping that everyone will remember why this happened and continue to ask the important questions, why was that young man`s spinal cord almost severed? Exactly, why did he have a crushed voice box? All the attention on the CVS and the home and anything else that`s been burned down, it`s important, but his life was more important. MICHAEL STEELE, FORMER RNC CHAIRMAN: For me, it`s Jay Morrison, the young man we saw the interview with who I think articulated the future of Baltimore. He is its future. I think I would rather put my trust in him and those who are working with him to grow -- MATTHEWS: I was impressed, too. STEELE: Very impressive. BERNARD: Absolutely. STEELE: He`s the future of Baltimore. It`s a great city with great people and he represented that tonight.   MATTHEWS: You know, it`s going to be the middle class of every ethnic group that makes the city work, the regular people -- the regular people who live in those houses that should be working for a living. There should be jobs. Michael Steele, my Republican brother, Michelle Bernard, and Eugene Robinson. That`s HARDBALL for now. Thanks for being with us. Coming up next, as I said, "ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" already there live in Baltimore. That`s how you say it, Baltimore. THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END Copyright 2015 CQ-Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of CQ-Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.>