Parents and officials agonize over school reopening plans. Biden calls school reopening crisis a national emergency. Trump campaign is happy to ignore the pandemic and economic fallout. U.S. has 6.1 million coronavirus cases and 186,000-plus deaths. Biden says, America is paying the price for the administration's pandemic response failures. President Trump denies having mini-strokes despite no one saying he had mini-strokes. Pence says he doesn't recall being on standby during Trump hospital visit.
ARI MELBER, MSNBC HOST: You just press the cable home page, search Melber or THE BEAT, press DVR for the show. We want you to do that because then you won't miss any episodes of THE BEAT. We even made this special graphic to remind you.
I'll be back here at 6:00 P.M. Eastern. But right now, it's "THE REIDOUT" with Joy Reid.
JOY REID, MSNBC HOST: Tonight, millions of parents across America are facing growing anxiety about sending their kids back to school amid an unchecked and highly contagious virus. Teachers tasked with educating those kids are also fearful about what a return means for the health and safety of themselves and their families.
Much of that anxiety is fueled by the laissez-faire attitude of the Trump administration. So, today, it was left to Joe Biden, the former vice president, to reassure the country and to say what everyone else seems to know, which is that reopening schools safely is a national emergency.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: If President Trump and his administration had done their jobs early on with this crisis, American schools would be open and would be open safely. Instead, American families all across this country are paying the price for his failures.
President Trump may not think this is a national emergency, but I think going back to school for millions of children and the impacts on their families and the community is a national emergency. I believe that's what it is.
Mr. President, where are you? Where are you? Why aren't you working on this? We need emergency support funding for our schools and we need it now. Mr. President, that's your job. That's your job.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Today, Jill and Joe Biden were touring schools and talking to health officials. Trump, by contrast, seemed to pay little attention to the issue. He traveled to North Carolina and made remarks at what could be a super-spreader event, a hallmark of his 2020 campaign.
But this is par for the course for the golfer in chief who spent the spring ignoring the problem, and then spent the summer declaring victory over the crisis he refused to acknowledge.
Now, despite what he would like you to believe, here are the actual numbers, 186,000 dead and 6.1 million infected. So far this week, more than 2,000 Americans have died, let that sink in, 2,000 Americans in just three days.
Trump has spent the past two weeks focused on a cynical bid to foster fear and loathing in America, but apparently it's not working. A new Reuters/Ipsos poll shows that 78 percent of Americans remain very or somewhat concerned about the coronavirus. Nearly 60 percent find Trump at least partially responsible for the current situation. When asked what the top issues are going into the election, 30 percent said the economy, and 16 percent said health care. Only 8 percent said crime.
For more, let's turn to Dr. Vin Gupta, pulmonologist at the University of Wisconsin Medical Center, Jonathan Lemire, White House Reporter for the Associated Press, and my friend and colleague, Nicolle Wallace, Host of Deadline White House.
And, Nicolle, I'm going to start with you. It's great to see you. Thank you for sticking around. And I know you've done a two-hour show already, so I am beyond appreciative of you for taking a little extra time.
And I want to start with you on just this question. My kids are older, so I only have a college student to worry about in terms of going back to school.
But, you know, both as a former political operative, as somebody who has been in this position of trying to work on a campaign and just as a human being and a parent, can you understand or make sense of the idea that Donald Trump seems to be just pretending coronavirus is gone while literally parents are sitting home terrified to send their kids back to school and teachers are scared to go back, as well?
NICOLLE WALLACE, MSNBC HOST: Well, first, I'm back because I missed you after spending two weeks -- hours, and it seems like -- last week alone seemed like three weeks but they were actually just two calendar weeks all together. So, thanks for having me.
Here is my thought about the dangers of divorcing yourself from a reality that the whole country is experiencing. Trump has been a little bit like a political Houdini, and not in that voters have signed up again for him, because in the midterms, he was rebuked. So he hasn't stood before the voters since the 2016 election. But he's going to in 60 days.
And here is the danger for him. COVID affects everybody. And I know he put on a convention in which COVID wasn't happening. His, in some cases, very elderly attendees at his events and Mike Pence's, they were not socially distanced, they were not wearing masks and they all seemed to be talking and shouting and cheering, which, as we know from Dr. Gupta, is precisely how the coronavirus spreads.
But the danger for him is that every person, especially every parent, is living with the reality. And the reality is that most parents, if you have the luxury of making a choice or facing two terrifying choices, one, that your child doesn't go back to school, they don't benefit from the brilliant teachers teaching them in the classroom, and you're struggling too, if you have a job that you're lucky enough to get to do it at home, you're doing it at subpar capacity, because right next to you is your child and his Zoom classroom.
Now, if you don't have the good fortune, the privilege to be able to work from home, then you're scrambling to find child care if schools aren't open. And this is where the divide has really exacerbated and low income students and low income parents are going to suffer the brunt of this failure. And the failure is 100 percent on President Trump.
We could have dealt with the pandemic in a way that got the country to a place where opening schools may not have been possible everywhere, but it could have been a debate. It could have been a conversation. We're now looking at one of the five largest school districts that can even contemplate it, and that's New York City.
So I think the failures really cross pressure the attempt to live in an alternate reality, because most parents, most moms and dads, and I think college kids are getting screwed just like the rest of kids. I don't think that's a time in your life when you should have to take on the failures of an American president. You have enough to worry about it. You're making tough choices about classes and careers, and those are tough years.
So I think it's anyone -- and, listen, I think you're right to start calling teachers essential workers. We're asking them to risk their lives in this sort of half-baked idea that President Trump has that all schools should open for in-person learning.
REID: Yes. And, Jonathan, let me bring you in. Because the thing that's confounding to me, even more than Donald Trump, who has his own sort of peculiar way of thinking about things, that so many governors are willing to take the risk to walk that plank with him and are not saying, okay, whatever Donald Trump does or doesn't do, I need to say to the people of Florida or the people Texas or the people Georgia. So many people are going along with this.
We have already seen the first deaths from this Sturgis motorcycle rally. I had never heard of the Sturgis motorcycle rally, but apparently it's a thing that happens in Minnesota. We've already seen the first person die from having attended it.
I want to play really quick, this is a guy called Kirk Cousins, you know, pro-athlete. He is a quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings. And this is how he is talking about the coronavirus.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KIRK COUSINS, MINNESOTA VIKINGS QUARTERBACK: For me, personally, if you're just talking, no one else can the virus, what is your concern if you could get it, I would say I'm going to go about my daily life if I get it. I'm going to ride it out. I'm going to let nature do its course, a survival of the fittest kind of an approach, and just say, if it knocks me out, it knocks me out. I'm going to be okay, even if I die. If I die, I know of have peace about that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Okay. This is somebody with a lot of influence. And there are a lot of people who are taking that kind of advice. And so we don't have the president saying that's not a way to think about this virus, and governors aren't either. Is there some explanation that you can see in the reporting, are governors just afraid to do something different than Donald Trump or is this Donald Trump attitude more pervasive in the Republican Party than just fear of him?
JONATHAN LEMIRE, WHITE HOUSE REPORTER, ASSOCIATED PRESS: Well, certainly. First of all, what a reckless statement there from Kirk Cousins, who is someone who is looked up to, not just in Minnesota but I'm sure NFL fans across the country. And I think what you have identified the states in particular you named, Florida, Texas, Georgia, these are all Republican governors who really latched themselves to the president, who are in lockstep with him on nearly every issue, including this.
All three of those states reopened, perhaps sooner than they should have, against the advice of some of the public health officials. All three states had to walk back at least portions of their reopening after the virus surged again during May, June, July. And yet they continue to, as you say, move in tandem with the president, that they are taking their cues from the White House opening schools as part of their effort to reopen broader society, which includes, of course, the economy, because, as Nicolle pointed out correctly, that a lot of people can't fully function in their jobs if they're home with their kids, if they're fortunate enough to have a kind of post (ph) where they can do that, but, obviously, they're not working at the maximum capacity.
And the president himself -- it's interesting. A few weeks ago, it seemed like this was an issue he really wanted to fight about with schools. And we're certainly hearing some of it but it's been de-emphasized. That's mostly because, as we have now reached the conventions and the general election sort of reaches, it is embarked and earnest here, fully joined.
The Trump campaign team, and they've said this to me privately in the last few days and we've reported it, they want to talk about anything other than the pandemic. They feel like any day, where COVID-19 is not the dominant storyline is a pretty good day for them, or at least a day in which they have a fighting chance. And that's why we're seeing them lean so heavily into law and border recently and they've abandoned some of the COVID rhetoric, including on schools, because they simply just don't want to have that conversation right now, as reckless as that is.
REID: Right. They don't want to have it. Well, they don't want to have it, but they want to have like sort of a fanciful conversation about it. You've got this talk of a vaccine by the end of the year. There's no -- I don't think anyone really believes that's really going to happen. And I guess I'll just ask you, Dr. Gupta, does that sound realistic to you? They don't want to talk about it, and yet, they say, oh, by the way, there will be a vaccine.
DR. VIN GUPTA, PULMONOLOGIST, UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON MEDICAL CENTER: Good evening, Joy. What I would say is in normal times, using normal metrics, and a normal phase three study, which is where a few companies are at, so they're trying to assess their vaccine candidates across tens of thousands of individuals for effectiveness and safety, the answer is definitely not, Joy.
Definitely not are we going to have a vaccine by the end of October or early November. And making the American public think that that's reasonable expectation is just going to loosen -- it's going lower our guard, it's going cause to think that a miracle is on the horizon, and it's just not right.
And so there is nobody who is credible who thinks that that is a realistic expectation.
REID: And back to you, Nicolle, for just a moment. There are new polls that are out in some of these swing states, Arizona, I think we have, we can put Wisconsin. And it shows that nothing changed from the week that we spent watching the convention. Nothing has really changed. Donald Trump is still in the 40s. Joe Biden is still in the 50s. We spent that entire week apparently for nothing, because nothing has changed in terms of the polls.
But what has changed is the rhetoric out of the White House, the things like herd immunity, maybe we'll do herd immunity, maybe we'll do a vaccine. Just as a pure political operative, does any of this make sense as a re-election strategy, to say nothing about the vaccine except fanciful things and to try to refocus the country away from it when people in their real lives can't get away from it?
WALLACE: So, what it says to me is that they're not playing for more than the 40 percent. I mean, what it says to me is they see the same polls we see. I'm told that the campaign is very concerned about its standing in Arizona, that they view that as a real sign of trouble that Joe Biden is as far ahead in Arizona as he appears, that the public polling matches up to their internal polling. And there is some concern that in places where his old build the wall message as collided with the COVID death toll and infection rate, it has really hurt him.
But I think that if you need an explanation for why he says things so crazy that Laura Ingraham has the face, it's because he's not playing to expand the coalition. He's playing to harden his faction of the electorate, to make them more mad, more afraid, more frothed up than they were four years ago, if you can fathom what that might look like. I think we're seeing it on the streets of Portland and other places. And then to delegitimize enough of the vote that he can sort of fog up or fuzz up the rest of it.
But I think that with Trump, we often look for a hidden strategy, something hatched down in the sit room. He lets it hang out. And Jonathan Lemire knows this better than anybody. It's all on his Twitter feed. He's seeking to make it harder to mail-in ballots absentee ballots. He is seeking to delegitimize whatever mail-in vote does come in.
He's taking anything he can get from Vladamir Putin. That's why we saw today, ABC broke this story, that a bulletin that was meant to go out to all law enforcement agencies and warn them against malign interference from Russia, it was scuttled, it didn't go out. So I think that what we see is exactly what their political strategy amounts to.
REID: Yes. If you think you can win with 40 percent, you have got to take a lot of people off of the table on the other side to get yourself a victory. And it's pretty frightening to think about that.
Dr. Vin Gupta, Jonathan Lemire, my friend, Nicolle Wallace, until next time for the trio, thank you for being here tonight. I really appreciate it.
And up next on THE REIDOUT, new reporting on Donald Trump's secret visit to Walter Reed Medical Center last year, and he's getting very defensive about it.
Plus, Joe Biden heads to Kenosha tomorrow, bringing a message of unity, while President Trump stokes fear with bizarre stories about mysterious people on a plane, emerging from the dark shadows, preying on the defenseless masses with bags of soup?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: And then they have cans of soup, soup. And they throw the cans of soup.
And you have people coming over with bags of soup, big bags of soup. And when they get caught, they say, no, this is just soup from my family.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Bags of soup.
THE REIDOUT continues after this.
REID: Donald Trump loves to traffic in conspiracy theories, but now he's up in arms about a rumor about himself that he appears to have started. Yesterday, Trump tweeted, unsolicited, mind you, something about a surprise trip he made to Walter Reed Medical Center back last November. Trump accused a vague and nebulous they, of falsely claiming that the visit was because he was having suffered a series of mini-strokes.
Now, it wasn't clear what he was referring to per se, but in his new book called Donald Trump versus the United States, New York Times Correspondent Michael Schmidt writes, quote, in reporting for this book, I learned that in the hours leading up to Trump's trip to the hospital, word went out in the west wing for the vice president to be on standby to take over the powers of the presidency temporarily if Trump had to over go a procedure that would require him to be anesthetized.
The passage was exerted in a New York Times review of the book, but, here is the thing, as Schmidt himself pointed out, the book says nothing about mini-strokes. And as NBA News noted, no major media outlet appears to have reported in recent days that Trump had a series of mini-strokes.
But to back up his denial, Trump had the White House physician put out a statement. Dr. Sean Conley stated that Trump had not been evaluated for a stroke or a mini-stroke, quote, as have been incorrectly reported in the media.
Again, no one reported this. A White House staffer claimed Trump was referring to a tweet from Bill Clinton's former press secretary, Joe Lockhart, which did not mention mini-strokes.
On Fox News last night, Vice President Mike Pence was asked about Schmidt's reporting that he was put on standby for the visit.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRET BAIER, FOX NEWS: He says in the book that you were put on alert to take control, to take office, essentially, if he went under for anesthesia.
Is that true?
MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: President Donald Trump is in excellent health.
And, Bret, I'm always informed of the president's movements. And whether it was on that day or any other day.
There was nothing out of the ordinary about that moment or that day. And I would just refer any other questions to the White House physician.
BAIER: But as far as being on standby?
PENCE: I don't -- I don't recall being told to be on standby.
I was informed that the president had a doctor's appointment.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
Now, here's what we do know. Trump's unplanned visit to Walter Reed last November did raise a lot of questions at the time. Trump claimed at the time that it was to start his yearly physical.
Then, in June, the White House released the results of that physical, making his new, new explanation for the trip all the weirder, that the visit was to complete my yearly physical.
I'm going to talk to Michael Schmidt about this reporting on this and his new book -- when THE REIDOUT continues.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSEPH BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm not going to speculate on what it means.
All I -- what I can say is that nothing this administration does is normal. The only time that I have been on notice is when the president is out of the country, and I'm in the country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Unlike Donald Trump, Joe Biden wasn't going to take the bait and speculate on his opponent's health, stating the obvious. Nothing this administration does is normal.
Biden was responding to a revelation in Michael Schmidt's new book, "Donald Trump V. the United States," that Vice President Mike Pence was told to be on standby during Donald Trump's unannounced visit to Walter Reed last November.
That passage wasn't getting a ton of attention, until Trump tweeted yesterday that the visit wasn't for mini-strokes, something Schmidt never alleged.
Joining me now is Michael Schmidt, Washington correspondent for "The New York Times" and author of "Donald Trump V. the United States: Inside the Struggle to Stop a President," a pretty daunting title.
And, Michael, let's talk just a little bit about this mini-stroke thing.
At the time that you were reporting on the Walter Reed visit, was there any talk whatsoever of the cause of the visit, of mini-strokes or strokes or any other ailment being associated with that visit?
MICHAEL SCHMIDT, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": I put everything I knew about this in the book. And there's nothing about a stroke or anything along the lines there.
And, for me, it was sort of the ultimate Trumpian moment of, I guess, putting out a book. I spent all this time working on a book, trying to understand how the president uses his power, this highly unique phenomenon where the people around him are trying to stop him, something that we have rarely, if ever, seen in American history.
And you do all this work, and you talk -- spend hours with people, talking to them. You spend so much time trying to understand what it's like to be in the shoes of Don McGahn, the former White House counsel, or Jim Comey, and then something that's not in your book becomes the thing the president picks up on.
And it just brought so much more attention to this issue than it ever would have gotten.
REID: Do you -- now that Donald Trump has brought it up himself, like repeatedly brought it up, to the point where now people are like, wait a minute, did he have mini-strokes, do you go back and think, well, maybe this is something, maybe "The Times" should have just put it out, like, maybe at the time?
Did you get the sense when he went to the hospital that this was something like a big deal that probably needed to be reported at the time?
SCHMIDT: Look, this is a very curious hospital visit.
It's been very curious for sometime. It's been a very -- people have had questions about it. It hasn't made any sense.
And if you look at Pence's answer yesterday, and you look at how he tries to explain himself, you can see him sort of going back and forth. His initial instinct, in response to that question, looked like it was to not answer the question and just give a sort of broad point, sort of talking point about how healthy the president was or -- and certainly is.
So, this visit has been something that just hasn't made sense for a long time. It didn't make sense at the time. And, still -- we still do not have an answer for it.
We don't -- as in the book, I say, don't know what it was. And in the end, Pence did not assume the powers of the presidency.
REID: Yes, there's a lot in this book to get to, but I do want to talk -- because it is "Donald Trump V. the United States." And protecting the nation from what is like the dot, dot, dot.
I want to bring up one of the other revelations that's in your book. There is this memo from former White House counsel Don McGahn, who you mentioned earlier, to the former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly that raised concerns about Jared Kushner and his security clearance.
Here is what McGahn wrote: "The information you were briefed on a week ago and subsequently relayed to me raises serious additional concerns about whether this individual ought to retain a top security clearance until such issues can be investigated and resolved. Interim secret is the highest clearance that I can concur until further information is received."
Do you have a sense of what -- what might McGahn have been nervous about regarding Jared Kushner?
SCHMIDT: So, there was these questions about Kushner's background check. His FBI background check went on for a very, very long time.
There were problems with the initial forms that he filled out, where, under -- you're supposed to be putting forth your truthful list of your contacts with foreign officials. And, in this case, it drags and drags and drags, and it's over a year into the presidency, and that background check has still not been completed.
The White House is doing -- under Kelly, Kelly came in, he realized that the security clearance system was not up to snuff and was sort of out of control, and there was a bunch of people with interim clearances. And they're trying to put that process back on track.
And it is in that process that there is this thing that Kelly is briefed on that relates to Kushner. And whatever it is -- it's not laid out in that memo -- whatever it is -- and I do not know what it is -- was very concerning to them and was part of their rationale for why they did not think that Kushner or Ivanka Trump should have top-secret security clearances.
And what you see going on here, in a larger sense, is the wrestling between sort of the institutionalists, the Kellys and the McGahns of the world, who were trying to keep the White House on a legal footing and following norms, going against the family.
And Kelly and McGahn suffered because of that. They suffered. And you can read in the book Kelly's own words to file about how Trump told him, ordered him, instructed him to give Kushner and Ivanka their clearances.
REID: Yes, the whole the family vs. others and wanting to prosecute Hillary Clinton and on and on and on, it's fascinating stuff. It's a spooky history, but a good one to have.
Michael Schmidt, thank you very much. Really appreciate your time. Best of luck with the book.
And still ahead: Joe Biden heads to Kenosha, Wisconsin, on the heels of President Trump's inflammatory visit yesterday.
REID: After Donald Trump's divisive visit to Kenosha, Wisconsin, where he laid on the support for law enforcement, but didn't even utter Jacob Blake's name, Joe and Jill Biden will head to Kenosha tomorrow.
And, unlike Trump, the Bidens will meet with members of Blake's family.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: What we want to do is, we got to heal. We got to put things together, bring people together.
And so my purpose in going will be to do just that, to be a positive influence on what's going on, talk about what need be done, and try to see if there's a beginning of a mechanism to bring the folks together.
We have to heal.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: It will be Biden's first trip to Wisconsin this year.
And when the Bidens arrive, they will greet a community that is very united behind the Blake family. It's also where Trump continued his theatrics yesterday, staging an event in front of a burned-down business, not with the business owner, who declined to participate in the photo-op, but with its former owner, who was willing to heap praise on Donald Trump.
Joining me now is Wisconsin Congresswoman Gwen Moore.
And, Congresswoman, I want to ask you about that, about the Donald Trump staging here with this business owner. It's a gentleman named Tom Gram, who owns this camera shop.
And he said the following. He said: "I think everything he," Trump, "does turns into a circus, and I just didn't want to be involved in it. I think he needs to bring this country together, rather than divide it."
And so since he wasn't willing to play ball, Donald Trump just found the owner of the land, who doesn't own the business, and portrayed him as the business owner.
What's been the reaction of Trump's visit to your fellow members of your state? Like, what has been the reaction to all of that theatrics?
REP. GWEN MOORE (D-WI): Well, thank you, Joy.
And that's exactly what it was. It was stagecraft. And his whole purpose for coming to Wisconsin was to set the stage, and he hoped to set the stage for the second civil war, so that he could rationalize his law and order agenda.
And the Kenosha community was very smart about this. They collaborated, and they got together and ahead of time, the mayor, good friend of mine, the faith-based community, other community leaders, and said, we do not want to feed the fuel of violence.
And so what they decided to do was to have a Jacob Blake community day. And they registered people to vote. They gave free COVID tests, free haircuts for the kids, free food, music. They had a no protest day.
Meanwhile, down the road, we saw the heavy presence of the National Guard. We saw a lots of folks with Trump signs. And we saw Trump meeting with local law enforcement.
And it's interesting, because the ACLU of Kenosha and ACLU of Wisconsin, they're now trying to get the Kenosha sheriff in particular to resign.
I know, Joy, that you know all about the craziness revolving around the vigilante groups who've been forming. And really encouraging that kind of behavior is something that is of concern to people in that region. They do not -- they did not want Trump there.
REID: There's -- on the other side of that, there is the -- I want to let you listen to Anthony Davis. He is the president of the Kenosha chapter of the NAACP.
And this is what he said about the candidate visits, both Donald Trump and Joe Biden.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANTHONY DAVIS, PRESIDENT, KENOSHA NAACP: I would not like to see either candidate here.
We have our own issues here in Kenosha. We're somewhat of a bedroom community. And we need this time. We don't need to be having candidates come here and talking to the people or hearing this or that or about what they're going to do.
We just need some time for ourselves.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: So, I mean, obviously, both Donald Trump and Joe Biden are -- they're thinking about Wisconsin as an electoral state. I mean, Donald Trump won Wisconsin literally by 1 percentage point, by 23,000 votes, in 2016.
So, obviously, there's a -- that's the reason he's there. Biden is there for the same reason. But is -- does that make sense to you as an argument from the NAACP chapter president that Biden wouldn't go?
I mean, Trump has already gone. It's a fait accompli. Does it make sense to you that he's saying Biden shouldn't come?
MOORE: Well, you know what? I'm not going to argue with the president of the NAACP in Kenosha, because, I mean, he is absolutely right.
It is a -- I was born three miles from there, and it's a close community, and people do need to heal.
The only thing that I would say is that the family themselves are taking comfort in Joe Biden. And I don't think that Joe is going to have a big -- there's not going to be a big public event, a big gathering.
I think Joe is going there. And I wouldn't be surprised if he masked up and gave Blake Sr. a great big old bear hug, just a hug of comfort, even notwithstanding our COVID situation, because I think that that's part of the healing.
The -- the father of Jacob Blake has said it felt like he was talking to one of his uncles to talk to Joe. And I know that they have talked several times back and forth over the phone.
And -- and, you know, so, they could both be right. The president of the NAACP could say, stay away, we don't need anybody campaigning and giving us their platform. We need to heal. But Joe Biden is coming, and it's not going to be a big public affair. He won't be touring the damage.
REID: Yeah. We'll -- we will definitely be paying attention to what happens tomorrow.
Congresswoman Gwen Moore, thank you so much. Always great to talk to you.
REID: Up next, what does the radicalization of -- thank you -- of Muslim extremists, why does that get so much more attention than the radicalization of white domestic terrorists, like the Boogaloo boys?
My next guest will help us unpack that dual reality.
We'll be right back.
REID: For decades, America's Muslim community has endured blanket portrayals that focus on one thing, not their families or individual achievements, or even anything about Islam.
No, just one thing, terrorism. Particularly after 9/11, profiling became a near American obsession for anybody brown, God forbid with a beard or head scarf, whether they were Muslim or not, traveling through an airport could be hell.
Physical attacks on not just Muslims but also Sikhs who are not Muslims increased. And TV shows about Muslims like "Homeland" and "24: Legacy" pounded the terrorism theme 24/7.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm a soldier.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're a terrorist.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'd like to acknowledge the many dedicated people at CTU, and the six Army Rangers who risked their lives to stop the attack on this country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Average American Muslims been for two decades now been pressed to answer for every act of terrorism committed by anyone, anywhere in the world, who claimed to be a Muslim. They're constantly asked, are you going to condemn terrorism, are you, are you?
And, unfortunately, that has too often been true of the media. According to a 2018 Institute for Social Policy and Understanding study, someone perceived to be Muslim, accused of a terrorism plot who receive 770 percent of the media coverage as somebody not perceived to be Muslim.
To be clear, the vast majority of the more than 1 billion Muslims on the planet, and the millions in this country are decided unradical, everyday people just living their lives when they're not getting profiled by the NYPD or banned by the Trump administration. It's the misportrayal that's the problem. Not the people.
And we're all too quick to call out those who radicalize the small number of mostly young men who are vulnerable to being co-opted by violent people. There have been lengthy treatments of this all over cable news for years. But when white Christians are radicalized, we don't react the same way. When is the last time President Trump or anyone in his campaign was asked if they are willing to condemn the Boogaloo Boys by name? Does Bill Barr ever get asked about them?
I mean, one of them literally allegedly killed a federal agent in Oakland using a Black Lives Matter rally as cover. Experts, including the FBI, have been warning for years about the radical right wing, and white nationalist groups seeking to radicalize white Americans and posing a threat of domestic terrorism, including using Black Lives Matter rallies as a scare tactic and physical cover to wreak mayhem.
Rather than stand up to that threat, the president of the United States is accelerating it. We are living in a time when the president is the fire starter. He is helping to radicalize his own followers, to try to help his re-election. The same way that he gleefully encouraged violence during his initial presidential run.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Oh, get out of here. Get out of here. Look at these people. Get out of here. Get out! Out, out, out!
In the old days, which isn't so long ago, when we were less politically correct, that kind of stuff wouldn't have happened. Today, we have to be so nice, so nice.
They're not protesters. Those aren't -- those are anarchists. They're agitators.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Anarchy and chaos on our streets.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The NYPD is reporting 28 shootings from just over the weekend. That's a 600 percent increase.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: We have never had a president do that. And he's getting help from his party and his media outlets who are literally celebrating vigilantism, and turning an alleged killer into their version of a hero.
If Trump was a Muslim leader, not the leader of the Christian right, how would we in the media describe what he's doing? I asked that question on Monday, and there was a lot of conversation, particularly online after the segment aired, some of which was frankly not in good faith.
But some of the conversation reflected the genuine feelings of people who have been subjected to the kind of stereotyping that I just described. And who take matters like this to heart because of it. And we should all be sensitive to that, and I certainly should have been sensitive to that.
So let's talk about it now. Joining me now is Naveed Jamali, "Newsweek" editor at large, and my guest on Monday. And Dalia Mogahed, director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding.
Thank you both for being here.
Naveed, I'm going to back to you and just play really quickly the section of the interview that was in question.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REID: When leaders let's say in the Muslim world talk a lot of violent talk, and encourage their supporters to be willing to commit violence, including on their own bodies, in order to win against whoever they decide is the enemy, we in the U.S. media describe that as they are radicalizing those people, particularly when they're radicalizing young people that's how we talk about the way Muslims act. When you see what Donald Trump is doing, is that any different from what we describe as radicalizing people?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: Not exactly the most artful way of asking that question, obviously, based on the reaction. But, Naveed, can you just contextualize a better way of sort of making that point, just from a national security point of view?
NAVEED JAMALI, NEWSWEEK, EDITOR-AT-LARGE: Let me just tell you what it meant to me and the actual visuals that I had in my mind. I am someone that came of age as a 9/11 generation. When I think of being a brown man in America, there are two way points that define what it Americans for me. And that is 9/11 and then the Muslim ban.
And after 9/11, you know, when you talk about being radicalized, we all know the 19 hijackers, who they were and what they were, I felt a very strong urge to counter this, that it wasn't enough to stand up and say something, but I wanted to do something. And the best way I thought I could do that is join the military, and that's exactly what I did. I'm not alone. There are plenty of brown and Muslim men and women, whether they joined the military or anything else, wanted to speak out and address this.
So to me what I took that to be is a question of, you know, this double standard that exists when we talk about brown and Muslim people in this country and how we hold us to a monolithic standard. You know, as you said, when there is a terrorist act within our community, we are all expected to apologize, to condemn it, which we do because it is the right thing to do.
And that same standard is not often applied to other communities. And it should be a standard that should be applied universally. So, I took what your question, not just with a national security standpoint, but I think it as a brown man whose father is Pakistani, whose father is Muslim, and by the way, who watched that segment. And I wanted it to answer in that vein, that I think took it exactly, this idea that really we are a country that has a double standard, that has double standard, and even someone who can serve and prove his loyalty, be patriotic, is then thrown a Muslim ban in his face, just like the fellow members of my community.
And that's really that double standard that I think we really have to address. I thought that was what the question was and I think it's an important one to ask.
REID: Well, and I want to let you in this and let you respond however you want to respond as well. By the way, for the audience, that was not what the entire segment was about. The segment was actually about Donald Trump radicalizing people and his rhetoric, and you can go all the way back to, if you talk about Muslims, him lying about saying that I know that Muslims were celebrating 9/11. I mean, he's done a lot of it.
But in that particular instance it was about his relationship to the far, far, far right that he is not discouraging, we'll put it that way. But just to let people know that was not the entire subject of the piece because this would have been the panel and not the panel that we had yesterday that was about a different thing. But it did come up, and, Dalia, and, you know, I -- that question to Naveed. It is something he and I have talked about and both, you know, been angry about for a long time.
But I guess the way I framed it obviously did not work. I want you to respond to me how that was taken and how that can really be brought up and do you think it is a fair analogy to make or a fair question to be asked?
DALIA MOGAHED, INSTITUTE FOR SOCIAL POLICY & UNDERSTANDING DIRECTOR OF RESEARCH: Well, thank you so much, Joy. I want to first say that I have been on your show before and you have always given --
MOGAHED: -- Muslim voices a fair shake. You are a fair reporter. You give us air time to make our case. You let us speak for ourselves and you're fair to us when we are on your show.
So I think that that's an important point to make. The way that I heard your statement was intended to make the analogy, which is a fair one, between radicalization of Muslim extremists and the radicalization of young white men in this country. The way that it came -- the way that it landed and the way that it was heard by some people, many people, in fact, was unintentionally saying that Muslims were inherently violent or that Muslim society -- the way in which Muslims act is violent.
And though that was not your intention, it is important to correct that notion for your millions of viewers. And that's why I think it's so important to have this conversation because what the facts are is that while Muslims receive the vast majority of media coverage when it comes to ideologically motivated violence, they are by no means the majority of -- they are not the ones that are committing most terrorism in America. The vast majority of terrorists' casualties at the hands of terrorism are at the hands of white supremacists and far right extremists in the United States. Most people don't know that.
Not only that, but Muslim publics around the world and in the United States are more likely than the general public to actually reject violence against civilians. So you have this media portrayal on one hand implying and reinforcing the stereotype while the reality on the other hand says the exact opposite.
REID: Yeah. I mean, and I guess this is why it annoys me to see the way that Donald Trump has talked about it because you are absolutely right. Here is some statistics. This is from a Georgia State University study. Muslims, 80 percent, are more likely to reject violence targeting civilians carried out by an individual or small group. That is just actual facts.
Attacks by Muslims perpetrators received on average 357 percent more coverage than other attacks. So, you know, Dahlia, it is vexing because when I see the Boogaloo Boys, you have an officer who Donald Trump sometimes cite who was gunned down. They never tell you who gunned this person down.
It was a Boogaloo Boys member, sounds like a silly name, but they are actually quite dangerous, using nearby peaceful protests that black lives matter were holding as a cover. Federal authorities have identified this man as Air Force Sergeant Steven Carrillo (ph), he's 32 years old. He's a member of this group.
I -- I mean, I guess when I don't hear that just described as domestic terrorism in the same way, it irks my spirit and I wonder for the Muslim community how does that land? How does that not say immediately terrorism?
MOGAHED: Well, I think that many of us don't necessarily want everyone to be called a terrorist. And that is a legal term that the media really shouldn't be throwing around against anyone. What we want, though, is simply objective fair coverage of all communities, of all acts of violence, whether they're ideologically motivated or not.
And what we often see however is that the term terrorist is only used against Muslims, no matter what their motivation might be and before there is a legal assessment. And that really hurts ordinary people. I mean, we know from our research, Joy, that Muslim children are the most likely group, twice as likely as other children, to be bullied in school and for their faith.
And as Naveed mentioned, people who aren't Muslim who are perceived to be Muslim received the same treatment. So, it has real world consequences.
Muslims are also the most likely faith group to report religious-based discrimination. It matters how the media talks about these things because it impacts ordinary people.
REID: Yeah. And, Naveed, it also matters how our political leaders, and I think Dalia is absolutely right, let's take that whole terrorism conversation off the table, just encouraging violence when it comes from a leader with as much power as the president of the United States, it feels, to me, more dangerous.
You've had -- let's just show this. People don't often show the two men who were killed in Kenosha. These were two innocent young men. Their names were Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum. They were the victims in this case.
They died as a result of somebody who came from out of state, allegedly, and shot three people, and they died. One of them was a dad. One of them was a young skateboarder.
You have Donald Trump sharing a video on CNN, a white nationalist video that he retweeted falsely blaming Black Lives Matter for a 2019 subway assault. So, it is everybody it's in on getting blamed for things that they haven't done.
I want you to listen to an ad by a woman named Elizabeth Neumann who left the administration. She was a former assistant secretary for threat prevention in the Department of Homeland Security, and then I want to give each of you a response to respond, Naveed and then Dalia.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, POLITICAL AD/ REPUBLICAN VOTERS AGAINST TRUMP)
ELIZABETH NEUMANN, FORMER DHS OFFICIAL: From January until March 11th, what you saw instead was a number of good public servants attempting to do their job and the president telling them to stop because he didn't want the economy to tank and he didn't want a distraction from his campaign. I'm sorry, Mr. President. You're hired to handle America's worst day. And you have absolutely failed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
REID: I'm up against very little time. But, Naveed, a very quick reaction from you and then I'm going to give Dalia the last word.
JAMALI: So, this is all about dehumanizing people, right? And, you know, when Trump goes on TV and talks about a man shot in the back seven times by a police officer and compares that to choking playing golf, that's who we're dealing with. It is important to understand that really when we talk about this, that brown people have been dehumanized. The only way to solve that is by treating us like equals.
REID: Yep. Dalia?
MOGAHED: Joy, fair coverage is important for democracy overall. It is not just about how Muslims are portrayed. It is about informing the public and giving them facts.
REID: Indeed. Naveed Jamali, Dalia Mogahed, thank you both very much. I really appreciate you guys being here tonight.
And tat is tonight's REIDOUT.
"ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" starts right now.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
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