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I'm Lee Cowan, and this is Sunday morning. This past week has been filled with still more racial unrest. This time in Kenosha, Wisconsin, where Jacob Blake was shot in the back multiple times by police. In the days since, the streets are filled with demonstrators, and police once again have used less lethal weapons against them. We've heard a lot about so-called rubber bullets lately, but for all the wrong reasons. People are going to be injured. That's that's what these munitions do. It's inevitable. It's inevitable. Increasingly, those getting injured aren't just violent agitators.
I don't see a way to use these weapons in any safe way that protects both human rights and health. The lethality of less lethal crowd control ahead on Sunday morning. With Chip Reid, we'll dip beneath the waves to meet some creatures who pretty much define the expression animal attraction. They're graceful, smart, and very unusual.
You would really have to go to outer space to come up with someone more different from us than this. They say this is like being kissed by an alien, and they are right ahead on Sunday morning. Auntie Giles tells us about the nation's newest remake, the return of the drive-in theater.
Martha Teichner offers up a taste of summer corn. Plus, Rita Braver, Steve Hartman, commentary from historian Jon Meacham, and a lot more on this last Sunday morning of August 2020. We'll be right back. It's been a summer of unrest in a number of cities across the country, and just how and when police use so-called less lethal force is a topic of much debate, as we report in our cover story. The demonstrations in Kenosha, Wisconsin streets in the name of Jacob Blake started as most protests do, peacefully. But as day turned to night, simmering tensions boiled over. Tempers were lost, and so was the message. For police, balancing the right to assemble with public safety is a delicate one. If and when crowds get out of control, the weapons at their disposal are designed to be less lethal. But in the weeks of unrest since the death of George Floyd, it's not just violent agitators being targeted by beanbag rounds and phone-tipped police. Beanbag rounds and phone-tipped projectiles, it's the innocent who are being injured as well. Take this protest in Fort Lauderdale, Florida back in May.
34-year-old Latoya Ratliff was there. Was it peaceful? It was very peaceful.
There weren't any issues for the most part of the day. But something changed. She wasn't sure just what at the time, but clearly the mood had shifted. We were kneeling on the ground a good distance away from the officers. And even as we were kneeling and chanting and being peaceful, at that time, we started to get tear gassed. The crowd dispersed, including Latoya. That's her wearing a pink backpack.
But watch what happens next. Latoya was shot in the head by a 40-millimeter foam-tipped round, fired, her attorney says, by a Fort Lauderdale police officer. The impact fractured Latoya's skull. She needed 20 stitches. And I remember people screaming and saying, help, she's been hit, call 911. In my mind, I'm not thinking that I was shot because why would the officer shoot me if I'm not posing any type of threat to him and I'm actually leaving? Hers is not a unique or isolated incident.
I didn't realize how big of a deal it was until there was like surgeons around me. Linda Tirado is a freelance journalist sent to cover the George Floyd protests in Minneapolis. She's a veteran of this kind of reporting. She was in Ferguson, Missouri, back in 2014 after another police killing. This one of Michael Brown. There's a space where the protesters are gathered in a group and police are gathered in their line.
And the people who are in between in that space are going to be media. And that's how you get that understanding of what's going on is you stand and you watch both sides. That's what she was doing in Minneapolis that night. This is the last photo she took, what appears to show an officer aiming directly at her. I think that not shooting people in the face for exercising the first thing we fixed about the Constitution should just be standard operating procedure. The non-lethal round shot at Linda that night blinded her in her left eye. So I can see to about here and everything past everything from here to here is just a blank. I'm assured that as I become used to having one eye I'll be able to do all the things I used to do without it being a problem.
But like the getting used to only having one eye is not a small task. To be sure, police have been injured in the protests too. Hundreds of them. More than 50 on one particularly violent night in Seattle recently. Crowds can be dangerous.
Dispersing them is often necessary. But the research on the lethality of less lethal weapons is pretty hard to come by. In 2017, a review of the available literature on the subject was published in the medical journal BMJ Open. Of the nearly 2,000 people since 1990 documented to have been injured by less lethal rounds, 300 suffered permanent disability.
53 of them died. These are large, dense, high-speed projectiles and they cause significant and severe injuries. Dr. Rohini Haar is with Physicians for Human Rights and one of the authors of that review. The basic rights like free speech and free assembly are being suppressed globally and the primary way that that's happening is because of crowd control weapons. In just the first week after the death of George Floyd, Haar documented at least 100 serious injuries to protesters and journalists.
Most to the head and neck. The narrative is that they're not lethal, they're not dangerous, that police need a continuum of use of force and that these are really excellent options for them to be safe while at the same time controlling riots. And that's not the case?
It's absolutely not the case. While most police departments have access to Leslie the weapons, experts say few are offered any significant training on just how to use them. I've talked to agencies, we've never seen crowd control before, we didn't even know what to do. These are 40 millimeter impact munitions. Travis Norton is an instructor with the California Association of Tactical Officers.
He specializes in Leslie the weapons, not only how to use them, but when. How do you deal with a group of agitators in the middle of peaceful protesters? There are a lot of different tactics you can use. Unfortunately, a lot of those departments don't know what those tactics are. What are we trying to accomplish with what we're trying to do? Are we just standing here on the skirmish line and deploying impact munitions at protesters hoping they'll go away?
Or do we have an actual strategy here? Rules of engagement, he says, have to be set because the risk of injury is almost inevitable. Unlike live ammunition, less lethal projectiles are unpredictable.
Where an officer aims and where the munitions hit can be two different things. Law enforcement is screaming for something better for us to use that's out there. In the last 20 years. We have had no new less lethal come out other than prototypes and pilot projects. Until something better comes along, he says, less lethals will likely remain a crowd control option for police departments.
What doesn't have to remain, he says, is the cloud around their use. A lot of times what happens in law enforcement is these things will happen, and then we just forget about them because we're on to the next emergency. And it's not purposeful.
It's just we don't have a lot of time to reflect on things, and we have to do better at that. Despite her injuries, Latoya Ratliff has kept demonstrating peaceful protest is in her DNA. Literally Fannie Lou Hamer, a hugely influential civil rights leader back in the 1960s, is Latoya's great aunt.
She too was bloodied in her battles. Less lethal munitions were meant to be a step forward from those dark days. But like the fight for civil rights itself, that work is not over. It was always taught to me early on that if you want to see change, if you want to see good in your community, that you have to be a part of it.
I do think it's important to continue to participate because there's still so much change that needs to happen. Thank you. Join us for a drive down memory lane to take in a summer pastime that Nancy Giles tells us is making a comeback. Good evening.
How many tonight? Paul Geisinger was just 17 years old when he started working at Shankwiler's drive-in theater in Orfield, Pennsylvania. I hated drive-ins with a passion. He even told his manager he wasn't going to stay long.
I was only going to give him two weeks and it's now 2020. Paul and his wife Susan ended up running the place, now considered America's oldest operating drive-in. We have people that come now with their children that came here as children. And their grandparents and their parents.
There's like three or four generations of people here. Shankwiler's opened in 1934, modeled after the very first drive-in that lit up Camden, New Jersey the year before. There were over 4,000 drive-ins across the country in the 50s.
That number faded away to 305 as of last year. Unfortunately, the land was worth more, and it most likely is in a lot of places, worth more than what the drive-in business is worth. It seemed drive-ins were parked only on memory lane.
Welcome back, until this year, to the drive-in. With the pandemic, how has that sort of changed things? Has that revitalized people's interest? You know, we all have to stay distant. We have a lot of people that have never been out here before, that have been coming out. For us, it has worked out very, very well.
We've truly been very, very fortunate. These days, because the coronavirus and social distancing shut down nearly all indoor entertainment, going to a drive-in may be just the ticket. It's a communal effect without being overly social.
I mean, that's what it's all about. Have you ever been to a drive-in movie before? No.
Wow! This is your first time? Yes. You remember drive-ins? Did you ever go to drive-ins when you were a kid? I always wanted to. You've never gone? I've never gone. What about you, right? Never.
It's my first time. Yeah. What's old is new again. Only drive-ins aren't just off the interstate highways like they used to be.
Like this wide open waterfront in Brooklyn, New York. Normally a backdrop for filming blockbusters, now the property has been screening blockbusters every night since June. And in other New York City boroughs, Rooftop Films, a nonprofit used to showing independent movies on, well, rooftops, turned to drive-ins after film festivals were canceled this year. Sixty percent of our programming is new independent films, and those are the movies that really would have no way to be seen whatsoever if not for what we're doing.
Dan Nuxall is the artistic director. In a way, it's almost like a really pleasant traffic jam where we can all enjoy a movie while we're jammed in traffic. There's usually only a traffic jam right when the movie ends, otherwise traffic is nice and smooth.
So, get the picture? Drive-ins are back, big time. I have a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore. And they're popping up in all sorts of places, from parking lots and shopping centers, to restaurants where they serve more than just popcorn, to the ocean. Even the retail giant Walmart put up free films outside 160 of their stores. I came to my husband and I said, hey, I want to do a pop-up drive-in movie theater. And he was like, okay.
And I was like, this is why I married you. And Siri and Aiyana Morris of Newark, New Jersey, saw their chance with this old, demolished baseball stadium. Or rather, they saw a need.
Because of the racial tension during this time, I wanted to be able to create a space that highlights the beauty of Black people and give us the opportunity to see something, see a positive image of ourselves. Now, don't project your love of these new pop-ups back at Shankwiler's in Pennsylvania. Good evening, folks, and a hearty welcome to our drive-in theater. Paul Geisinger is a bit of a purist. If you really want to experience a drive-in, go to a real drive-in. That's just my opinion. Sitting in the middle of a McAdam parking lot just doesn't do it for me.
Paul, I've got to tell you, sometimes it's kind of groovy. Many of the pop-ups say they'll stay open long after summer, even as indoor theaters slowly return. So, who knows?
Drive-ins might not fade to Black after all. But the point isn't the end. The point is winning.
Yes! There are bad people in the world. The best way to protect the good people is to convict the bad. So here's to us.
The Good Fight, the final season, now streaming exclusively on Paramount+. August is just about over, but there's still plenty of time to enjoy a great taste of summer, corn. Martha Teichner is our reporter in the field. The Warrensburg, Illinois Corn Festival was more corn than festival this year, due to COVID-19. Make sure you're responsible.
Make sure you're wearing your mask when you can. There weren't the usual big-name bands. But there was corn. Lots of corn. Which, after all, is the point of a corn festival.
And some might say, the point of summer. It's pretty juicy and pretty sweet. So what are you going to do with all that corn? I'm going to make a big barbecue and give it away to some family members.
Aha! Corn is certainly the point of summer at the Harbs Family Farm in Mattituck, on New York's Long Island. I'm going to take three bushels of corn. That's a lot of corn. Yes, it is. Where you can buy it by the dozen or the bushel to take home.
Thank you. Or you can stick around and eat it roasted. And have you ever had corn ice cream? It's got big pieces of corn in it. It is corn ice cream, all right.
It's really good. In 1989, Ed Harbs, a 12th generation farmer, and his wife Monica, decided raising sweet corn was a better way to support eight kids than potatoes, and switched. This is truly the farm that corn built. Now a farm experience, complete with several corny things to do, including three corn mazes in the fall.
Some people just wanted to spend some extra time in the country, have some country food with their family, spend an hour or two, and head off whenever they like. The Harbs Family Farm produces half a million ears of sweet corn a season. Impressive. Here's another number, 92 million acres, an area nearly the same size as the Harbs family farm. An area nearly the size of Montana. That's how much corn is planted nationwide. Only about one percent of it's sweet corn. The rest is field corn, mainly used for animal feed, ethanol, or as a sweetener. It's at least a five or six thousand year old's crop. Corn was domesticated by the peoples of Mesoamerica from its wild ancestor teosinte, which looks like this. Now look at corn. The cornerstone not only of Mexico's cuisine, but of its history, mythology, and art.
I mean if you hold a tortilla you're holding 3,000 years of history in your hands. Mexican entrepreneur Francisco Musi and his partners tracked down a few dozen farmers who still grow increasingly scarce traditional varieties of corn. On tiny plots throughout Mexico. They started Tomoa hoping that by selling this corn to restaurants around the world they could improve the farmer's lives and convince them to continue raising it. Corn fits in as the backbone to the restaurant.
Justin Bazdarek co-owns Oshomoco, a Michelin starred Mexican restaurant in Brooklyn. The Tomoa corn is ground, then this mushy dough called masa is formed into tortillas. So we've taken fresh corn, added it with all those ingredients, cotija, mayo, epizote, herb, and lime, spread that on, added the cheese. If only you could smell how good this smells. Bazdarek is creating his corn on corn version of a Oaxacan street snack called its lauda. And then we add our Oshomoco hot sauce.
We try to make little flavor explosions of things. Mmm, may I? Please.
As my father always used to say, Oh, I guess I'll have to sacrifice myself. It is really good. Thank you.
Somebody's got to do it. Time now for Steve Hartman with a story of a very special serenade. Joe and Sharon Korst of Raleigh, North Carolina, just celebrated 63 years of wedded bliss. Wow. And to mark the milestone, Joe gave his bride one of the best anniversary presents ever. Of all the things that he could have done, that was probably the most meaningful.
I love you. To fully appreciate the gift, you first need to hear the song. Their song.
It's a Kenny Rogers tune called Beautiful, All That You Could Be. And for years, Joe sang it to Sharon on birthdays, anniversaries, and so many other occasions that eventually friends and family memorized it, too. Teresa Kostrava is their daughter.
She is the number one thing in his life. Here's to you, Sharon. And singing that song was the way to say it. Teresa says it was the way to say it. Yeah, I get tired.
Joe recently suffered two strokes. How do you spell up? Which left him at a terrible loss for language. I'm lost.
I have trouble calling my wife's name or the children's name and. So you lost the song? Yeah.
So I just accepted it and didn't really think about it till this past anniversary. And and then he started singing it. Mostly unbeknownst to Sharon, Joe had been working hard to rescue their song. Whenever a line came back to him in the hospital, he jotted it down in a notebook and listened to the melody on a loop.
I wanted to relearn it and to give it to my wife. Just like he always did. And that's how the best anniversary present ever turned out to be the same anniversary present as always. I love you.
I love you, too. Thank you. With the political season officially now in full swing, we have thoughts this morning from historian John Meacham. His new book about the late Congressman John Lewis is called His Truth is Marching On.
In the months before he died, John Lewis contributed an essay to conclude a book that I was writing about him. It is, in a sense, his last testament, one that, like John himself, looks forward, not backward. He wrote, There are forces today in America trying to divide people along racial lines. There are forces today that are still preaching hate and division. There are forces today that want us to return to the old ways, to lose ground, to take our eyes off the prize. It makes me sad, for we don't want to go back. We want to go forward and create one community, one America.
Ready, step. John Robert Lewis died in July and was given a saint's farewell. To press forward in his spirit isn't easy, just look around. Murderous shootings of black men by police, violent protests in American cities, righteous fury at the existing order, but uncertainty about how to respond and seek reform. John Lewis would understand. We do not want our freedom gradually, but we want to be free now. At the 1963 March on Washington, in the shadow of the Lincoln Memorial, John Lewis deplored patience. He wanted freedom now.
He didn't want to burn America. He wanted to rebuild it, as he said, in the image of God and democracy. It was the noblest of goals, and Lewis knew, as we must know, that the single greatest one in the world, the one that will be the greatest one in the world, the greatest form of nonviolent protest, is the vote, the right for which he fought and bled and nearly died.
And so we must exercise that sacred privilege with care and vigilance. It's the least we can do for John Lewis, and the most we can do for ourselves. Lewis was hopeful to the end, and he always led by love. He wrote, There's something brewing in America that's going to bring people closer and closer together. Adversity can breed unity. Hatred can give way to love. A leadership of love. How wonderful that would be. And leadership in a democracy is as much a function of our hearts and minds, yours and mine, as it is a president's.
In the last lines, John wrote, When I was growing up, there was a song that people would sing in the church. You have to believe that. You have to believe it. It's all going to work out. As ever, John Robert Lewis was right.
But it will only work out if we speak up, speak out, and vote. I'm Lee Cowan. Please join us when our trumpet sounds again next Sunday morning.
Until then, be safe, be well, and enjoy the rest of your weekend. Hi, podcast peeps. It's me, Drew Barrymore.
Oh my goodness. I want to tell you about our new show. It's the Drew's News Podcast. And in each episode, me and a weekly guest are going to cover all the quirky, fun, inspiring, and informative stories that exist out in the world because, well, I need it.
And maybe you do too. From the newest interior design trend, Barbie Corps, to the right and wrong way to wash your armpits. Also, we're going to get into things that you just kind of won't believe and were not able to do in daytime television, so watch out. Listen to Drew's News wherever you get your podcasts. It's your good news on the go.
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