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Postpartum Depression, Kevin McCarthy, Norman Lear Tribute

CBS Sunday Morning / Jane Pauley
The Truth Network Radio
December 10, 2023 4:12 pm

Postpartum Depression, Kevin McCarthy, Norman Lear Tribute

CBS Sunday Morning / Jane Pauley

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December 10, 2023 4:12 pm

Guest host: Seth Doane. In our cover story, Tracy Smith looks at the tragedy of postpartum depression, and a promising new treatment. Also: Robert Costa interviews former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who this week announced his retirement from Congress; Ted Koppel looks at how black lung disease is worsening among ever-younger coal miners, and we look back on the lives of legendary producer Norman Lear and Oscar-nominated actor Ryan O'Neal.

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Insurance not available in all states or situations. Good morning. Jane Pauley is off this weekend.

I'm Seth Doan and this is Sunday Morning. You might think the days and weeks after the birth of a child would be a time of great joy for a new mom. But for far too many, it can be one of deep despair. Postpartum depression is an all too common condition that can sometimes even lead to suicide.

Tracy Smith will look into this age-old problem and share news of a promising new treatment. A turtle, do you see the turtle on there? For Lee said, Lopez Rose being a new mom was a lot harder than it looked. Did people tell you, oh, this is just the baby blues?

Yes. And I would ask like, is this normal? Like I'm crying so much. Then the question comes up, well, what's wrong with me? I'm not like the rest of them. And so who wants to share that?

The silent struggle of postpartum depression coming up on Sunday Morning. As you know, we lost a television giant this past week, the great Norman Lear. Mo Rocca offers us an appreciation of his remarkable career and colorful life. Everybody pulls his weight. Norman Lear made sure life on earth was funny for all of us. But he also had plans for what came next.

If I could introduce Carol O'Connor to the Bernard Shaw, that would be a dream. We remember a television legend ahead on Sunday Morning. Ted Koppel this morning is heading to coal country, where even as our dependence on coal declines, the deadly disease it causes in miners continues to take a terrible toll.

Kevin Weichel is 34. He used to be a coal miner. And you got black lung? Complicated black lung.

What do they mean by complicated? My lungs is turning a rock. Coal miners with black lung. More than ever, younger than ever. Later on Sunday morning. Also this morning, Lee Cowan helps us mark the passing of the Oscar-nominated star of the movie Love Story, actor Ryan O'Neill. Robert Costa is talking with just-resigned Congressman Kevin McCarthy about his rocky fall from grace. Plus a story of giving from Steve Hartman. And more on this Sunday morning for December 10th, 2023.

We'll return in a moment. Want flexibility? Take yoga. Want flexibility with your health insurance? Check out United Healthcare Insurance Plans, underwritten by Golden Rule Insurance Company. They offer flexible, budget-friendly medical, dental, and vision coverage that may be right for you.

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Join for free at or get the Rakuten app. That's R-A-K-U-T-E-N. It is a cruel irony that the gift of one life can potentially bring about the loss of another. Tracy Smith has our report on the debilitating effects of postpartum depression and news of a promising new treatment. High school sweethearts Mitchell and Brenda Encarnacion filled the early years of their marriage with excitement. So Ireland, Italy, you guys went everywhere.

Before embarking on another kind of adventure. How was she about looking forward to having the baby? Oh, she was super gung ho, just reading all these books.

It was like YouTube videos. She made me like a PowerPoint. So she watched all these parenting videos. It was like a full-time job for her.

In October 2020, Brenda gave birth to their daughter Evelyn, yet despite all their preparation, there was one thing they didn't see coming. Sometimes I'd catch her just like crying for no reason. And I would always ask her and she'd be like, yeah, it's just hormones.

She just kept calling it mommy brain. As a paramedic, Mitchell said he recognized the signs of postpartum depression and begged her to see a therapist, but things didn't improve. Was there a point when you knew something was wrong? The morning before, she looked different. I could see it in her eyes that there was something wrong. That day, nine months after giving birth, Brenda Encarnacion took her own life.

She was 30 years old. In the United States, one in seven women experience postpartum depression. More new moms die from suicide or overdose than anything else. Their main complaint is, I'm feeling overwhelmed, and that should really be a signal for us to dive deeper. Dr. Christina Delegenides is the director of women's behavioral health at New York's Zucker Hillside Hospital. Feeling overwhelmed, feeling consumed. She researches and treats depression in pregnant and postpartum women. There is this phrase out there, the baby blues, which makes it sound like it's just normal and it will go away. Yeah. This is not the baby blues, right?

So they both exist, and that's part of the confusion. So the baby blues are really this normal physiological adaptation to delivering a baby. And so our brain needs to reset, and sometimes that can affect our moon, and it never lasts more than two weeks.

It does not require any treatment at all. Postpartum or perinatal depression does not go away after two weeks, and the symptoms are often more severe than feeling a little sad. Many women will withdraw from the things that they used to enjoy. They'll also report just feeling drained of energy. PPD is triggered by factors like genetics, stress, and changing hormones. Dr. Delegenides says you can actually see it when looking at the brain.

This area, the medial prefrontal cortex, really important for emotion regulation, cognition, and this is the area that we're finding really has much more activity, more fired up than postpartum depression than in women without any symptoms at all. It just makes it so real, and it dispels the stigma that this isn't a true medical illness. You can see it is.

Exactly. A turtle. A turtle. Do you see the turtle on there?

Lissette Lopez-Rose didn't need a brain scan to tell her something was wrong. I like to use the analogy of like shells, so like a crab shell. I felt like the meat is the baby. It was picked out, and then I'm just discarded.

That's really how I felt. In the months after she gave birth to daughter Sybil in November 2020, she began to have suicidal thoughts, but her doctors never knew. Everything's about the baby, and it's never about the mom. It's never about like, how am I doing?

So I never had a conversation. I think if I did, I might have been a little bit more truthful. Was there a part of you that was scared to say, hey, I'm not fine?

Yes. I'm a woman of color. I'm Latina. If I say something like, I want to take my life or something like that, I feel like they would have taken my baby away. That was my mentality, and that's why I was not honest about disclosing how those thoughts were affecting me. Six.

Yup. Lisette eventually found help, and now shares her journey on social media, hoping to destigmatize PPD. But experts say only about 6% of diagnosed women receive treatment, and thousands more never come forward at all. I think we're likely underestimating the population that's suffering. Joy Burkhard is the executive director of the Policy Center for Maternal Mental Health.

Why are so many women falling through the cracks? Here in the United States, our system doesn't hold any one provider responsible for maternal mental health disorders. The problem really lies in accountability, who's responsible for detecting and developing some treatment plans to support women. And right now, you have the woman being passed from one provider to another provider.

Indeed. Traditional treatments like antidepressants take time, something new moms don't really have. But starting this week, moms may have another option, a new FDA-approved drug, Zerzouveh, the first-ever pill specifically for postpartum depression. Dr. Delegenitis ran one of the trials and says the pill, taken for 14 days, provides almost immediate relief. What's it like for you, as a clinician, to see a woman who came in suffering from perinatal depression boom in a couple of days? Goosebumps. It was a little unreal, because we're just not trained in this way, to think that our therapies can work so quickly.

The overall price tag on the treatment is around $16,000, and it's unclear at this time if or how much insurance will cover. There are other unknowns as well. You can't take it if you're breastfeeding?

No. We just don't have data because it's not even out yet. We don't know if there are effects on the baby. In time, we'll have information to help patients who are lactating make those decisions. But experts like Joy Burkhard say it's a reason for hope. It's a game changer. But what we don't want to overlook is the fact that women still need support. We need the pill, but we need much more. Thank you, baby.

How perfect is that? Who's that? Mitchell Encarnacion likes to share happy memories with his daughter, Evie. It's mama.

But he's willing to talk about the painful ones, too, with the hope that by looking back, he can encourage more women with PPD to come forward. I didn't think it would happen to me. I didn't think it would happen to somebody that happy. Maybe if people knew, they'd still have their mom.

Because now all Evie has is pictures. You're doing a lot of shopping this holiday season. But are you saving a lot? With Rakuten, you can save big on holiday gifts from your favorite brands. They give shoppers like you cash back on top of the biggest sales of the year.

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That's R-A-K-U-T-E-N. I'm CBS News correspondent Major Garrett, host of the podcast, Agent of Betrayal, The Double Life of Robert Hansen. During the Cold War, FBI agent Robert Hansen traded classified secrets to the Kremlin in exchange for cash and jewels. In the podcast, you'll hear from Hansen's closest friends, family members, victims, and colleagues for the most comprehensive telling of who Robert Hansen really was. Binge the entire series now.

Agent of Betrayal, The Double Life of Robert Hansen is available on the Wondery app, Amazon Music, or wherever you get your podcasts. It happened on Friday. If we were running out of Bibles, you should have told me we were running out of Bibles. Well, we're running out of Bibles. Well, then we've got to get new ones.

Then let's get new ones. The passing of actor Ryan O'Neill, a giant of movies in the 1970s. With Lee Cowan, we'll look back. Ryan O'Neill probably wouldn't mind if the first thing you think of is his role in Love Stories, a tearjerker defined by its soundtrack and its catchphrase. Love means never having to say you're sorry. Words that turned out to be oddly prophetic in O'Neill's life.

I've had to say I'm sorry a lot in my life. That's all I know. He was talented, but troubled. Here is my toast to you, Captain John Quinn. He was cast as the lead in Stanley Kubrick's Barry Lyndon. He played opposite Barbra Streisand in What's Up, Doc? What's up, Doc? Did you happen to know that I love you? He even helped make his daughter Tatum an Oscar winner at the age of 10 in Paper Moon. You my pa?

Of course I ain't your pa. But his boy-next-door image was sometimes at odds with his personal life, marked by a hot temper, drugs, and alcohol. The one constant, though, in his life was Farrah Fawcett. Their relationship was an on-again-off-again affair, but by most counts, always tender.

In 2001, when O'Neill was diagnosed with leukemia, she was there. Five years later, when Fawcett began her own three-year battle with terminal cancer, he was there for her. He even suggested that the hospital chaplain marry the two near the end.

She said, okay, let's get married. But by then, she was so weak that he was only able to give her the last rights. If you think about it, their relationship was, in a way, a love story.

Just as passionate, and in the end, just as cruel. Maybe the reason Ryan O'Neill's performance in that film has stuck with us for so long is because it represents a place we all hope we find before it's too late. Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has become the latest Washington lawmaker to head for the exits.

He spoke Friday with our Robert Costa about his tumultuous time in office, his fractured Republican Party, and what comes next. When you go into the Senate, it's like being in a country club, not a lot of people. The House, it's like you walk into a truck stop to have breakfast, right? But that's the way the founders designed it.

We're a microcosm of society, so everything good and bad in society is going to be here. It's rough. It's rough.

Truck stop, rough. But it's good. Eight of them kicked you out of the speakership. There are still those in the ranks who want to burn the House down.

I never said it'd be fair, but you know, I give as good as I get. California Republican Kevin McCarthy holds a place in history as the first ever Speaker of the House to be voted out of that position. Keeping government open and paying our troops was the right decision. Historic. Mr. Kevin McCarthy for Speaker of the House. But looking at how his tenure began, hardly a shock. A speaker has not been elected, not been elected, not been elected. Back in January, it took McCarthy 15 ballots, more than any speaker dating back before the Civil War to win the gavel.

Since he was elected to Congress in 2006 and rose as a so-called young gun, McCarthy has made no secret of his ambition. Did you ever say to yourself during that speaker vote, maybe I don't want this job? No, I never said I didn't want this job. I love the challenge. I knew at the time I probably wouldn't be able to end the job.

I mean, not on my terms. I knew who I was dealing with. I think history will say they were wrong in that decision.

I did love the job. Now the 58-year-old McCarthy is quitting Congress, a year before his term is out. He leaves Republicans with a slim majority that is struggling mightily to find consensus. Let me read you a quote from the famous speaker Sam Rayburn. Any jackass can kick a barn down, but it takes a carpenter to build it. Is he right, especially when it comes to this place, the House of Representatives?

Yeah, and it takes a lot of builders. I mean, I've had the privilege of being here 17 years, and I've got to be a part of building two majorities. I come from California. I grew up in a family that were Democrats. I applied for an internship in a congressional seat. I got turned down. And now I got elected to that seat I couldn't get an internship for, and I got to be the 55th Speaker of the House. Tell me, any other country is that possible in? But at the same time, how do you reconcile all of that good feeling with the eight who pushed you out, and they showed the country they don't really want to govern?

They like chaos. That's true. You're going to have that in any industry, in any place that you live.

I think this is pretty particular to this place. Yes, but remember this, for everybody in America, we don't get to hire who works with us, and we don't get to fire who works with us. But it wasn't hard for rank-and-file Republicans to fire him. In October, when McCarthy struck a deal to keep the government funded, eight Republicans responded by pushing him out.

The office of Speaker of the House is hereby declared vacant. His chief antagonist, a congressman from Florida. When you hear the name Matt Gaetz, what word comes to mind?

Look, I think history will show who Matt Gaetz really is. Will you support a primary challenge against him and the others who went against you in 2024? I'm not focused on that. You're not ruling it out.

Look, we have too many challenges. And you know what, that doesn't determine the future. Of course, Kevin McCarthy does have a focus these days on the prospects of another Florida resident. Will Donald Trump be the nominee? Yes. And the Republican Party? Yes. And if Biden stays as the nominee for the Democrats, I believe Donald Trump will win.

I believe the Republicans will gain more seats in the House and the Republicans will win the Senate. Can he count on your support? Yes. That's an endorsement. I will support the president. I will support President Trump. Would you be willing to serve in a Trump cabinet?

In the right position. Look, if I'm the best person for the job, yes. I worked with President Trump on a lot of policies. We worked together to win the majority.

But we also have a relationship where we're very honest with one another. That relationship with Trump has become a central part of McCarthy's own political story. The president bears responsibility for Wednesday's attack on Congress by mob rioters. His stark reversal after the January 6th insurrection, going from blaming Trump to standing with him, drew scorn from Democrats and some Republicans who saw him rehabilitating a dangerous figure. You went to visit Trump at Mar-a-Lago. You threw him a lifeline. He might have been finished if you didn't go. Would you do it again?

No, that's your opinion, Dad. I know a lot's been written about that. I think at the day I'll write a story about all about it in the book. What are you holding back? I'm not holding anything back. You praise Trump's policies. You say he's a good guy. But many Americans, they look at his language, they listen to his speeches, and they hear an authoritarian, some say even a fascist, on the horizon in this country. What do you say to those people who have those real concerns?

I don't see that in... This is what I tell President Trump, too. What President Trump needs to do in this campaign, it needs to be about rebuilding, restoring, renewing America. It can't be about revenge.

He's talking about retribution day in, day out. He needs to stop that. He needs to stop that. You think he's going to listen to you saying, stop that, stop that? He hasn't listened to anybody before.

That's not true. He will adapt when he gets all the facts. He's not backing away from his calls for retribution? Yeah, but remember, you have a check and balance system, and I think at the end of the day- Where's the check and balance on him and the Republican Party?

America doesn't want to see the idea of retribution. If it's rebuild, restore, and renew, I think he'll see that. Look, that's him, but I'm not going to change who I am, and I'm not going to stop giving him the advice. Listen, look, I lost the job as Speaker.

Maybe I don't have the best advice, but I know one thing is I love this country. I want tomorrow to be better than today, and I'm going to do everything in my power, and I'm going to be engaged in the process to make it better. I'm Mo Rocca, and I'm excited to announce season four of my podcast Mobituaries. I've got a whole new bunch of stories to share with you about the most fascinating people and things who are no longer with us.

From famous figures who died on the very same day to the things I wish would die, like buffets. Listen to Mobituaries with Mo Rocca on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. I'm Keri Mulligan, the host of I Hear Fear, a new anthology series of terror. You and I know that the best scary stories are the ones we tell each other in the dark, so turn off your lights and close your eyes.

Although I Hear Fear on the Wondery app or wherever you get your podcasts. In this season of giving, here's a little inspiration, compliments of Steve Hartman. Here at Teacher's Treasures, a free store for educators who need school supplies, Executive Director Margaret Sheehan is still stunned at her good fortune. It was an act of amazing kindness. After someone called to offer her nonprofit more than a million dollars. To which I responded, I need to sit down.

And it wasn't just her. For the past two years, across the city of Indianapolis, dozens of other nonprofits have gotten the same call. The first thing he said is, what would you do with a million dollars? We hovered above our own bodies thinking like, is this real? The man making the calls was attorney Dwayne Isaacs, and he says just about everyone had that same reaction.

Some wouldn't even hear him out. Probably three or four different entities that lost out because they just didn't take my call. Lost out on a million dollars? Yeah. It was that unbelievable.

Mm hmm. And you still haven't heard the most unbelievable part. The money isn't his. He's just the executor. The money belonged to a guy named Terry Kahn.

Terry worked 30 years for the Veterans Administration. He had no immediate family. And most importantly, he just was unbelievably frugal.

Terry lived in this modest house in South Indianapolis, drove an old Honda and refused to carry a cell phone because he said they cost too much. Even when he died back in 2021, he wanted no announcement because who would spend good money on an obituary? The man was Pennywise, but pound generous. Everything was directed to charity, but Terry didn't specify what charity, so Dwayne called around to see who wanted it. And in the end, about a dozen nonprofits took his call and got a share of the $13 million estate. So yeah, it's crazy.

Including $1.5 million for Teachers Treasures, roughly double their annual budget. Forever changed because of his choice of how he lived. He's smiling someplace, there's no doubt about it. He would be getting the kick out of this.

Yes. Because he just got a glowing obituary on CBS News and it didn't cost him a dime. Hey, I'm Arisha. And I'm Brooke. And we're the hosts of Wondery's podcast, Even the Rich, where we bring you absolutely true and absolutely shocking stories about the most famous families and biggest celebrities the world has ever seen. Our newest series is all about the royal spare Prince Harry. Stalked by grief and terrorized by the press, he grew up as the black sheep of the British royal family, but when he finally pushes through his stoic exterior and lets his feelings in, he'll have to make a choice he never thought he'd face. In our series, Prince Harry Windsor of Change, we'll tell you how Harry discarded years of tradition to find the happiness he always craved. Follow Even the Rich on the Wondery app or wherever you get your podcasts. You can binge Even the Rich and Prince Harry Windsor of Change early and ad free right now on Wondery Plus. Hey, everybody, Stephen Colbert here.

I have my own. The show has a podcast, The Late Show Pod Show, and I'm here with the producer, Becca. Becca, what are we doing?

What is this? So The Late Show Pod Show, it's everything you love about The Late Show, the monologue, the lead guest. And am I correct about this, that you actually get things in the podcast often that aren't on the show because we had to cut things for time. And so you get more guests or you might even get some jokes or some more meanwhile or something like that.

We didn't get a chance. We had conversations with Lewis and the band that you don't get. So you get more stuff. So if you don't listen to the podcast, you're losing money. It's true. It's true TV.

You can only put so much. You got to get those commercial breaks in. But the podcast, we can keep going. That's the great thing is about podcast is that the real estate is enormously cheap.

And so you could just shovel anything in there. People go, thank you. Listen to The Late Show Pod Show with Stephen Colbert wherever you get your podcasts.

I use the Internet. We head off to coal country now with senior contributor Ted Koppel, who's found that an age old problem is afflicting even the young. West Virginia, October, Friday Night Football. The Oak Hill Red Devils are hosting the Buchanan Buccaneers. Long before game time, the littlest fans dressed to the teeth, are trotted out one by one by a succession of cheerleaders. When the cheerleaders crank up their own routine, a few veterans of the squad from a generation or two ago are discreetly keeping pace in the back row. In small town America, Friday Night Football is a family event, and it remains a big deal.

Zach Davis here, he's head coach for the Buccaneers. Our kids, some are going to go to college and then go into some sort of professional career. A lot of them will go be a blue collar worker, whether that's at Walmart or a local business or some sort of convenience store. I notice you're not mentioning the mines. This used to be, this is coal country right here.

Used to be. I think a couple of our kids I know of have been in the mines since I've been here, but not very many. These kids who are out in the field right now, 20 years ago, half of them at least would have ended up in the mines.

That's a fact. Today? Today, no chance of going in a coal mine. I graduated high school on a Friday, Monday morning, I was in a coal mine. My dad worked a coal mine, my granddad worked a coal mine, my brothers worked a coal mine. Still is coal country, but not like it used to be. Don Barrett used to be a miner. 23 years in a coal mine. Everybody was working, there was jobs everywhere, people buying new homes, new cars. Life was good.

That was the upside. Mining, of course, was always a dangerous job, and one in every five miners has for years ended up with black lung. Black lung is a bad disease.

I have problems with breathing, you have coughing, you just suffer where you can't do the things that you used to do. Kevin Wankel is taking what's called a pulmonary function test. Big deep breath in, blast it out hard. Keep pushing. It identifies just how badly impaired his lungs have become.

The test confirms what he and respiratory therapist Lisa Emery already know. Almost there. Big breath in, suck in, suck in. Good. Take a break.

You can take your notes. Kevin's black lung is so severe that he can no longer work in the mines. Yeah, these things are tough. What's different about Kevin is his age. Used to be black lung didn't force a man out of the mines until he was in his late fifties or early sixties. Kevin is just thirty-four.

Kevin has been a coal miner almost half his life. There he was at age eighteen suddenly making more money than he ever dreamed possible. The first six months underground at twelve dollars an hour made seventy-six thousand dollars. In six months?

In six months. That's how much I worked. Sometimes I wouldn't even go home. I'd go out and sleep in the parking lot, get back up and go back in.

I was told that I'd break myself long before I broke the company, so I could borrow as much as I wanted. I'm guessing there was a truck in your future there somewhere. Yeah. Yeah. Was that the first thing you bought? Yep.

I went and bought a brand new F-250 diesel. You know, you grow up with little, so when you start making that kind of money. Those were the good days. Yeah.

Yeah. Those were the good days. When did life start getting serious?

When my son was born. Then you look at stuff different. How? You really realize the dangers when you have something to live for instead of just yourself. It's something that you expect to get when you're old, not thirty-four. You're thirty-four?

Thirty-four. And you got black lung? Complicated black lung.

What do they mean by complicated? My lung is turning a rock. Kevin is just one of many young miners showing up at the New River Health Clinic. This is a complicated pneumoconiosis, so he has the worst form of black lung. That's respiratory therapist Lisa Emery again. Our rates of black lung in central Appalachia are skyrocketing.

Why is that, Lisa? It seems that the miners are having higher exposure levels to silica dust. You tell me if I'm oversimplifying it, they're having to drill through more rock to get to the coal.

Absolutely. And the rock dust, paradoxically, is more damaging to the lungs even than the coal dust is. It's small. It's small. It's smaller.

It's finer. It's a dust called silica dust. This is the second of three public hearings that MSHA is holding on the proposed rule lowering miners' exposure to respirable crystalline silica. MSHA, the Mine Safety and Health Administration, has proposed a new rule that would lower miners' exposure to that silica dust. And I'm happy to see this included in the proposed rule. It's a rule that needs congressional approval but still faces Republican opposition. It needs to be reinforced by MSHA and not by the coal companies. We contacted several mining trade associations, all declined the opportunity to comment. We've already got the limits for black lung coal dust.

This is silica dust, which has been there present all the time, and it cuts your lungs. William Bolts Willis retired from the coal industry years ago, but he's still in the union. In fact, he's president of United Mine Workers Local 8843. But this, in and of itself, is going to change nothing.

It may not because there's an IT in what they're doing to make the companies comply with this. Coal mining isn't a bad job. I do love coal mining, but it doesn't have to be the way it is. Roscoe, that's not his real name, is a 34-year-old working coal miner who fears that he already has black lung. The reason we're obscuring his identity is his contention that the mines routinely break the rules. What would happen if your name came out? Probably never have a job in the coal industry again. Are you serious?

100%. Roscoe explains what happens when an inspector comes on mine property. Everybody's crossing their T's and dotting their I's. Everything's done right. When we're underground and an inspector pulls up on that property, before he ever gets out of the vehicle, the dispatcher calls underground and lets every section know that there's an inspector on the property.

So by the time the inspector comes up to the section, everything's right. How many years has that been going on? That's been going on since I've been in the coal mine. Forever, huh? Yeah.

Yeah. They keep raising these dust laws and these ventilation laws for these coal companies, thinking that it's going to help this black lung matter, but it's not. Because? Because the laws that are in effect now would work if coal companies actually obeyed them and took care of their men full-time instead of whenever there's just an inspector on the section. That's the only thing that mining companies understand is money. Sam Petsock represents miners in their lawsuit seeking benefits for black lung. Coal companies rarely provide such benefits without being sued. We are seeing many young miners, hundreds in this region where I practice law, as young as their 30s, losing over a quarter of their lung to pure rock dust. It's a crisis.

We've never seen so many young miners with such short exposures becoming so extremely sick. So for years now, you've been trying to get an improvement in the regulation, which you now have. Unfortunately, the rule lacks any significant enforcement mechanism.

Before the rule was finalized, the Department of Labor must add significant enforcement mechanisms and specified monetary penalties for violating this rule. Or else? Or else, unfortunately, we have no reason to expect that the rate of black lung and silicosis will decline in this country. There's some kind of a gauge that measures a dust pump that measures the dust in the air. It takes in that dust and traps it in a filter. Kevin Weichel explains how, he says, the mines stack the deck when it comes to testing for air quality. Kevin Well, company pumps, you'd keep them in clean air to make sure that they passed. Kevin So really, what the inspectors were seeing was- Kevin Was not a normal shift. Kevin Was not a normal shift.

If the inspectors had actually seen what the real reading was, what would the difference have been? Kevin Significant. Kevin And what would that have meant? Kevin A lot of changes.

I mean, them ventilation that ate up the air required on each machine. Kevin It would have been more expensive for the company? Kevin Yeah.

It would have been more expensive and a great loss of production. Kevin You think that happens a lot? Kevin I know it does.

And anybody says it don't, so why? Narrator The disease, as Kevin knows, is not reversible. Kevin It's progressing, it will progress, whether I'm in the dust or not, it's still going to grow and lead to probably a lung transplant at some point in time. Kevin If you're lucky. Kevin If I'm lucky, yep. Kevin Expensive? Karen Very. Kevin Have you got any idea what it costs? Karen I don't. Kevin Tens of thousands of dollars. Karen I'd say it's close to a million. Kevin Really? Karen Yeah. Narrator And the money is only part of the problem. There are wait lists and limited locations where lung transplants are performed, which can mean moving entire families for months at a time.

Television programs don't dwell much on what comes next. The unexpected expenses, the likely relocation, the shifting responsibilities. Kevin and his wife, Megan, have four young children, what lies ahead is daunting for all of them. You've been silent throughout this whole thing. Megan Yeah. Kevin Tell me a little bit about how this has been for you. Megan It's been really depressing. Kevin Yeah. All of a sudden you got a lot more responsibility than you ever thought you were going to need, huh?

Megan A lot of stress. Kevin Yeah. The company laid it out for Kevin half a lifetime ago.

He'd break himself before he broke the company, and that's pretty much how it is. Narrator The word prolific more than applies to television legend Norman Lear, the visionary behind any number of memorable TV shows. But prolific hardly conveys the pivotal role he played in transforming this medium, even our culture.

Mo Rocca has our appreciation. Norman Lear, who died at the age of 101, didn't invent the situation comedy, but more than anyone else, he made sure that it said something important. Norman My slide rule is if I care, you care if I laugh, you laugh.

If I think it's serious, you'll think it's serious. Narrator Without him, it's unlikely we would have ever met Sanford and Son, Maude, The Jeffersons, the families from good times, and one day at a time. Just remember, I hate change, or that grumpy grandstanding daddy of them all. Norman When I began to cast all in the family, my first thought, the only one I had in mind that was a name I knew and a face I knew and a personality I understood was Mickey Rooney. And he thought it was ridiculous that I was thinking of doing a show about a bigot. You're going to get killed in the streets, he told me, they're going to shoot you dead.

One, two, three. Narrator But Norman Lear understood that the America of 1971 was ready for the warts and all realness of Archie Bunker. The very first script from all in the family.

Oh, for crying out loud. Narrator As he told CBS News chief medical correspondent and his own son-in-law, John Lapook. There's nothing that unites people more or better than laughter. Narrator And all in the family in particular, when I think about that, there were people on either side of the political spectrum who saw something in it for them. I like to think what they saw was the foolishness of the human condition.

I ain't over the hill, but you can certainly see the top of it. Finding the funny in the serious began early for Norman when he was growing up working class in Connecticut. You're nine years old and you find out that your father is going to prison. What is that like? It's terrible.

It's terrible. I adored him. His father, convicted of selling fake bonds, was sent away to prison for three years. Lear still remembers a neighbor's words of wisdom. He puts his hand on my shoulder and says, well, you're the man in the house now, Norman. And there, there, a man doesn't cry. Nine years old.

I'm hearing that. Ultimately, it taught me there's humor everywhere in every situation. Lear's world view was also shaped by trips to New York City, looking out the train window into the apartments of Harlem. They felt like they were eight feet away. They were probably 30 feet. They were very close.

And the windows leading into the apartments were very visible and life inside those windows. And they were largely African-American. And I used to wonder about them. Who were these families? Who were these families?

What were they thinking? What were their problems? I also had something in common with them. I knew by then that as a Jewish kid, there were people who hated me simply for that reason. And I understood by, certainly by then, that black people had it worse than I had it.

Just a few years later, Lear would look out different windows a world away. How are you doing, buddy? Hi, Hugg. Hey, good to see you.

Hi, Hugg. Yes. During World War II, Lear served as a radio operator and gunner, flying more than 50 bombing missions over Germany and Italy. His escort during some of these dangerous flights, the famed all-black Tuskegee Airmen. So it's 70 years later. In 2015, Lear met one of them, Professor Roscoe Brown, face-to-face for the first time. I shot down a jet over Berlin on a mission that you were on, March 24, 1945.

How amazing is it that the two of us flew the same mission over Berlin the same day? Norman Lear understood the price of freedom and was willing to pay real money for it. In 2000, he and Internet entrepreneur David Hayden spent over $8 million for one of 25 surviving copies of the Declaration of Independence. This is an investment in sharing something that's a part that belongs to all of us. Not for himself, but for the public. It was exhibited across the country for more than three years. The price of freedom is citizen participation, not 8.4 or whatever million dollars it is. In 1981, Lear founded the progressive advocacy group People for the American Way. The pleasure of being part of 250,000 people who are seeking to remind America of the tradition of religious liberty and pluralism and diversity in this country. I know my group ran public service announcements to spread their message.

So maybe there's something wrong when people, even preachers, suggest that other people are good Christians or bad Christians, depending on their political views. That's not the American way. Norman Lear was not the retiring type. Where does the tension sort of build up for you?

Head to toe. On most mornings, well into his 90s, he was up early working out. I get applause doing this. And he kept close connection with his large extended family, including his wife, Lynn, his six children and four grandchildren. The soundtrack of my life has been laughter.

And laughter for you is a kind of medicine, isn't it? Well, I happen to believe it has everything to do with a long life. Norman Lear kept creating to the very end. Three of them I wear all the time. One of them just kind of hangs around, keeping the others company. During the pandemic, inspiring his followers over social media.

I'm in my 99th year and it feels remarkably like my 98th year. Sharing this with his daughter, Kate, and his son-in-law. When they're thinking about death, I don't mind the going. It's the leaving that is the problem for me. Going who knows what's out there that it can't be all bad.

But leaving, I can't think of anything good about leaving. I'm Seth Doan. Thank you for listening. Please join us when our trumpet sounds again next Sunday morning. Hey, Prime members! You can listen to CBS Sunday Morning with Jane Pauley ad-free on Amazon Music. Download the Amazon Music app today. Or you can listen ad-free with Wondery Plus in Apple Podcasts. Before you go, tell us about yourself by completing a short survey at slash survey.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-10 18:11:13 / 2023-12-10 18:29:46 / 19

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