The Alyona Show: Haves and Have Nots
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities has reported that the income gap between the rich and poor in America is at an 80 year high, the largest differential since the period immediately preceding the Great Depression. This report only extends until the end of the 2007 economic cycle, before the current recession took full effect. RT Correspondent Lauren Lyster joins Alyona to explain what factors contributed to this divide.
Then, the final version of the financial reform bill received the 60th vote it needed to pass the Senate now that Republican Senators Olympia Snowe (Maine) and Scott Brown (Massachusetts) said they would support the legislation. Alyona asks Gregory White from the Business Insider if this bill will change anything or will Wall Street continue to rule America? Gregory White breaks down this bill.
The bizarre story of Shahram Amiri, an Iranian nuclear scientist, who went missing in May 2009 during a pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia, continues. During the past few weeks, a number of conflicting videos have appeared on the web claiming that he was captured and held here by the CIA. Other videos claimed that he was in the US of his own free will. Last night, the scientist appeared at the Pakistani Embassy's Iranian interests section in Washington, D.C. But that doesn't mean any questions have been answered. RT Correspondent Kristine Frazao explains the theories floating around this story.
Later, as the NAACP’s annual convention takes place in Kansas City, a resolution has been introduced to condemn the Tea Party as racist. This isn't the first time the issue has been brought up. Earlier, a number of racial slurs were written on signs at Tea Party rallies, and African American congress members have been spit on for voting for health care reform. The Tea Party is denying these claims, and is saying they've been inspired by the Civil Rights Movement. Alyona asks is anyone buying it. Joining Alyona is J.P. Freire from the Washington Examiner and Georgetown University Professor Christopher Chambers.
Finally, the NAACP California Chapter announced their unconditional endorsement for Proposition 19 on the November ballot that would legalize the recreational use of marijuana in the state. President Alice Huffman explained this is a civil rights issue. They claim African-Americans are disproportionately prosecuted for drug related offenses for marijuana, despite studies showing lower rates for marijuana use among African-Americans compared with whites. Bishop Ron Allen, leader of the International Faith-Based Coalition and member of the NAACP is outraged by the endorsement, and has called for Huffman to resign. Alyona asks him if he agreed with the NAACP that African Americans are disproportionately affected by the criminalization of marijuana.