Weekly Wrap: DACA's Legal Future, The Lasting Impact Of Prop 187, And Local Politics The Supreme Court is set to consider the termination of the DACA — Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals — program, which the Trump Administration rescinded in 2017. What does the program's legal future look like? Plus, how Prop 187 — a California ballot measure from 25 years ago — has influenced how Americans view and legislate about immigration. Then, what effect is the national political discourse having on local politics? Sam talks with State College, Pennsylvania Borough Councilman Dan Murphy about how things are playing out in his town. Sam is joined by L.A. Times writers Gustavo Arellano and Cindy Carcamo.
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Weekly Wrap: DACA's Legal Future, The Lasting Impact Of Prop 187, And Local Politics

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Weekly Wrap: DACA's Legal Future, The Lasting Impact Of Prop 187, And Local Politics

Weekly Wrap: DACA's Legal Future, The Lasting Impact Of Prop 187, And Local Politics

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/777705049/777761462" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

AUNT BETTY: Hey, y'all. This is Sam's Aunt Betty. This week on the show, from the Los Angeles Times, feature writer and host of the podcast "This Is California: The Battle Of 187" Gustavo Arellano and immigration reporter Cindy Carcamo. All right. Let's start the show.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SAM SANDERS, HOST:

Hey, y'all. From NPR, I'm Sam Sanders. IT'S BEEN A MINUTE. Happy weekend to my listeners and to my guests. I'm so glad you both are here.

GUSTAVO ARELLANO: Oh, thank you for having us.

CINDY CARCAMO: Thank you.

SANDERS: Thanks for coming. To start the show, I want to play you both some audio, and I want you to guess where it comes from.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

BENJAMIN CRUTCHER: Oh, my God. There's food trucks here. There's two food trucks here. I shouldn't have to be waiting long enough for a car to order and get food. There are bathrooms here. I should be in a car. I shouldn't be going to the bathroom. There are camera crews here. I should be in a car, not on camera.

SANDERS: This is a place in LA where people are waiting for a car so long there are food trucks and restrooms.

CARCAMO: LAX.

SANDERS: LAX.

CARCAMO: (Laughter).

ARELLANO: Yeah, that's true.

SANDERS: Have you heard about this crisis at LAX?

CARCAMO: Yes.

SANDERS: So LAX, one of the biggest airports in the world, has been having really crazy congestion because of all the rideshares and Ubers and Lyfts. So - what? - a week or two ago, they decided to move the pickup for those rideshares to a place off of the airport, and you have to take a shuttle to get there. It's been hell. Have y'all heard about it?

ARELLANO: I might be the only person on the planet who has never had a problem with LAX.

SANDERS: OK.

ARELLANO: Do Americans not have cousins the way I do?

(LAUGHTER)

ARELLANO: Like, you always have a cousin to pick you up. You know, you call them. Primo, hey, can you pick me up? You live in Montebello. You can drop me off in Santa Ana. Like, OK. Sure. Do it. So...

SANDERS: That's a good cousin.

ARELLANO: Yeah.

SANDERS: I don't have a good cousin like that.

CARCAMO: That's a very nice cousin. No.

ARELLANO: (Laughter).

SANDERS: But this is crazy because, like, apparently, it takes an hour now to get your Uber. So that video was actually - that was Benjamin Crutcher. He made a video for the LA Times showing just how crazy LAX has become. This is what's really weird to me. This is not just an LA thing. So recently, the airport in San Francisco, SFO...

ARELLANO: Yeah.

CARCAMO: Oh.

SANDERS: ...They had to move their rideshare pickup 'cause it was getting too crazy. Boston Logan Airport had to move all of their ride-hail pickups to the top of a parking garage. And there's this larger issue with companies like Uber and Lyft. They totally screw up parts of cities or make congestion worse. And then when it gets really bad, they don't have to clean it up.

ARELLANO: No.

SANDERS: Someone else does.

CARCAMO: Oh, man. Yeah. Our colleague Laura Nelson's been covering that. And one of the things I heard was some people were taking, like, shuttles that go to the hotels.

SANDERS: Oh, my gosh.

CARCAMO: And they were Ubering (ph) from the hotels (laughter).

SANDERS: I guess for me, my question is, should I be more angry at Uber and Lyft for making this problem or for us lazy folks who want our rideshares to pick us up right at the terminal all the time? We've stopped taking shuttles. We've stopped taking buses from the airport. We want this instantaneous...

ARELLANO: Yeah.

SANDERS: ...On-demand car service.

CARCAMO: It's us, dude.

(LAUGHTER)

ARELLANO: It totally is.

CARCAMO: It really is. I mean, it's just demand, right?

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: If there weren't demand, then...

SANDERS: Yeah. Anyway, I digress.

We're going to pivot, talk about some heavier things. There are three cases hitting the Supreme Court this week that deal with immigration, specifically the so-called DREAMers and a program called DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. So with that, both of my panelists this week are going to have three words on immigration - again, my guests Gustavo Arellano, feature writer at the LA Times covering Southern California, also host of the podcast "This Is California: The Battle Of 187," and Cindy Carcamo, also a writer for the LA Times, covering immigration.

Cindy, what are your three words?

CARCAMO: My three words are, DACA might die.

SANDERS: First, I guess, let's make sure that folks know what DACA is.

CARCAMO: DACA is Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. It was an executive action that Obama basically did in 2012. It protects a certain group of people - of immigrants who came here when they were younger, either legally or illegally, but are currently in the country without legal status. And it gave them protection from deportation and also the ability to work in the United States legally.

SANDERS: And it might die because the Supreme Court might say it's over.

CARCAMO: Essentially, the Trump administration can end DACA for any policy-based reason. But that's not what the administration did. What Trump did was, in 2017, he issued a memo stating that it would wind down DACA because, they argued, not for policy reasons, but because Obama overstepped his executive powers in creating the program. Basically...

SANDERS: So they said that Obama doing it was illegal.

CARCAMO: Yeah. Basically, that DACA's unconstitutional.

SANDERS: Got it.

CARCAMO: So if the administration were to write a memo announcing the end of DACA for any number of policy reasons...

SANDERS: It would just be done.

CARCAMO: ...They could do that. And the court wouldn't have to intervene. But - so you're like, OK. So why wouldn't they do that?

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: Well, some people say that it's strategic, that basically, they want the conservative majority of the Supreme Court to determine whether it's illegal to create DACA. And if it decides that the program is unlawful, that would bar future presidents for basically restoring DACA.

SANDERS: Oh. So if it goes through the Supreme Court and is killed there...

CARCAMO: Yes.

SANDERS: ...It stops it for good, possibly.

CARCAMO: Yes.

SANDERS: So they could've done a quicker end on it.

CARCAMO: Yes.

SANDERS: But it might've been picked up again by the next president.

CARCAMO: Yes, exactly.

SANDERS: And their hope now is that, if the Supreme Court says no to it, it's done for good.

CARCAMO: Yes. Yes.

SANDERS: OK.

CARCAMO: But even if, let's say, the court rules that it's constitutional - let's say they do that - they could, like, tomorrow, issue a memo with policy-based reasons.

SANDERS: And then end it that way.

CARCAMO: Yeah, exactly.

SANDERS: So what I find really interesting when I'm thinking about these DACA cases hitting the court - we haven't heard about the DREAMers for a while. It seems as if there was a moment where they were the focus of the immigration debate in the country.

CARCAMO: Right.

SANDERS: Then they kind of went away, right, Gustavo?

ARELLANO: Yeah. Part of it was because they renamed themselves. You can't call them DREAMers anymore...

CARCAMO: (Laughter).

ARELLANO: ...Because DREAMers infers that there's a good set of undocumented workers...

CARCAMO: Right. Right.

ARELLANO: ...And a bad set of undocumented workers. I think it's actually a very powerful argument because a lot of these people - yeah - it was very easy to like DREAMers. Oh, these young kids - yeah.

SANDERS: Look at these kids. They're, like, a high school valedictorian...

CARCAMO: Yeah.

SANDERS: ...Working three jobs. They just want to make it.

ARELLANO: They're going to...

SANDERS: And there's this image of, like, a model immigrant, almost.

CARCAMO: Yeah.

ARELLANO: Exactly. And that group bought that narrative for a little bit. But then...

CARCAMO: They fed into that narrative.

ARELLANO: They fed into that narrative.

CARCAMO: They wanted that.

ARELLANO: They wanted that. But then after a while...

CARCAMO: Yes.

ARELLANO: ...Some people, like - I think very brilliant minds within the movement said no. It can't just be us. What about our cousins who're just as brilliant as us. But then they caught up by the prison industrial complex. What about them? They also deserve to be in this country.

SANDERS: Yeah. How many people are recipients of DACA?

CARCAMO: Nearly 800,000. And most...

SANDERS: Eight hundred thousand.

CARCAMO: Yeah, nearly. And most of them are in California, actually - many of them in Los Angeles.

SANDERS: Yeah. Yeah.

CARCAMO: Yes.

SANDERS: So then these DREAMers have been around for a few years now. And I'm sure that...

ARELLANO: Oh, 15 years - long.

SANDERS: Yeah. And I'm sure the movement has changed over time.

CARCAMO: Right.

SANDERS: You talked to some of these kids and adults.

CARCAMO: Yes. They're...

SANDERS: What are they saying right now?

CARCAMO: Yeah. They're adults now. They're parents. They have children...

SANDERS: Oh, my goodness.

CARCAMO: ...Who are U.S. citizens...

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: ...You know?

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: So, I mean, it's a very diverse group and - yeah. And the thing is it's a mature movement now. So you have different schools of thought of - as to how to proceed. So it's a fractured movement, too. I mean, you have people who are like, look, DACA is not enough, first of all. And it's only a Band-Aid. We need something more permanent and not just for me, who's a DACA recipient, but also for my parents and for the larger population, for all 11 million who are here and also the asylum-seekers who are coming - basically everyone. But then there is, like, a whole - you know, there are other people who are like, wait a minute - you know, who are DACA recipients - let's start with us. And then we can see where we go from there.

ARELLANO: Piecemeal.

CARCAMO: Right. But the issue with that is that when DACA happened, there are - people who have been following this will say that that population of immigrant youth that received DACA became complacent, you know? They kind of got theirs - not all of them but, you know - that they got theirs and...

SANDERS: That got their status.

CARCAMO: Yeah. They got...

SANDERS: They're cool.

CARCAMO: ...Their status. They're busy. They're working. I mean, people get burnt out by being activists, you know, and being out there in the streets and everything. And they just proceeded with their lives, knowing that it wasn't permanent, but it was something. And...

SANDERS: But it felt permanent? I mean, like, me watching...

CARCAMO: It did. It's kind of a mirage.

SANDERS: ...The Obama administration talk about DACA and the DREAMers, it seemed like, OK. Those - that group, they're fine. But, I mean, things change.

CARCAMO: Well, no. It's a mirage. It was always meant to be temporary and renewed...

SANDERS: OK.

CARCAMO: ...You know...

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: ...Every two years.

SANDERS: So these three cases, they were filed in California, D.C. and New York.

CARCAMO: Right.

SANDERS: They'll be heard this month. It will take...

CARCAMO: Yeah, oral arguments begin November 12.

SANDERS: OK. Do we have any way of knowing how this might shake out yet?

CARCAMO: (Laughter).

SANDERS: Probably not.

CARCAMO: Probably not. And I don't think it'll be the end no matter how it shakes out.

SANDERS: You're listening to IT'S BEEN A MINUTE from NPR, the show where we catch up on the week that was. I'm Sam Sanders, here with two guests - Gustavo Arellano, feature writer at the LA Times covering Southern California, also host of the podcast "This Is California: The Battle Of 187," and Cindy Carcamo, also a writer for the LA Times covering immigration. Gustavo, you have three words about Prop 187. What are they?

ARELLANO: It's easy - one, eight, seven.

(LAUGHTER)

ARELLANO: (Unintelligible) 187. No, it's the easiest thing. Cindy had it a little bit harder.

CARCAMO: You did your homework.

ARELLANO: I did my homework. I didn't even have to - no, it literally boils down to one, eight, seven. This whole argument that we're going to have with DACA, this whole issue about illegal immigration all dates back to this proposition that happened 25 years ago. This weekend is the 25th anniversary of Proposition 187. And that's the whole reason why I decided to do a podcast about that.

CARCAMO: Right.

SANDERS: Yeah. So let's tell folks who maybe aren't from California what Prop 187 was and how it affected the immigration debate for decades since then.

ARELLANO: Proposition 187 was a ballot initiative that did everything from if you were a government worker, if you suspected someone of being undocumented, you had to report them to the INS. You could not get any social services as an undocumented immigrant, except emergency health care.

SANDERS: Yeah.

ARELLANO: No more welfare, no more clinics, no more anything of that.

SANDERS: And you couldn't go to school either, right?

ARELLANO: And this is the most important thing.

CARCAMO: Right.

ARELLANO: This is what ties into DACA today. So what the 187 proponents wanted to do was make it illegal for undocumented children to get any public education - not just K-12 but all the way through college. And it passed by a 59-to-41% margin.

SANDERS: And this is what's crazy. So it passed. But it never ends up taking effect?

ARELLANO: It never went into effect because the day after 187 passed, seven lawsuits went on both the state and the federal level. December '94, a judge puts a stay to it; 1997, she rules it unconstitutional. And in 1999, you know - we'll talk about the governor who championed this, Pete Wilson, a little bit, but the governor that replaced him, Gray Davis, he decided to no longer pursue an appeal with 187. And it died.

SANDERS: So it died eventually. But the way that the debate over Prop 187 was framed kind of informed the way the rest of the country now talks about immigration, right?

CARCAMO: Right.

SANDERS: Because there was these visuals of, like, an immigrant invasion, right?

ARELLANO: Though the most notorious visual from that era was a commercial. It wasn't actually for 187. It was for the reelection campaign...

CARCAMO: Pete Wilson.

ARELLANO: ...of Pete Wilson. So he runs this ad. And it starts off with grainy footage of folks crossing the U.S.-Mexico border.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

UNIDENTIFIED NARRATOR: They keep coming - 2 million illegal immigrants in California. The federal government won't stop them at the border, yet requires us to pay billions to take care of them.

ARELLANO: It looked like "Night Of The Living Dead," even - so in my podcast, I talked to the founders of 187, the political consultants, Barbara and Bob Kiley. And they themselves said when they saw that commercial, their jaws dropped. They said, we were just trying to make 187 about numbers. And, you know, we could have a debate about that. But they said once that happened, it was over. People knew 187 was racist. People knew this idea about illegal immigration - it was all based on race in California.

SANDERS: But what happened after that - and we still see it now - there were these copycat bills that happened across the country - right? - even after Prop 187 never really takes effect.

ARELLANO: One eighty-seven has this amazing double-edged sword effect. The whole reason California is such a super progressive state is because the Democrats, they're all Latinos who came of age, who got radicalized during 187. So that's what makes us into the progressive paradigm, supposedly, that we are. On the other hand, though, the Federation for American Immigration Reform, the nation's top anti-immigration group, they learned from 187. I interviewed the president, Dan Stein. He said, yeah, we learned both that these initiatives have - people are going to vote for them. And we also learned since it got unconstitutional, we're going to make sure it does not get overruled - something like this doesn't get overruled by the courts anymore.

SANDERS: Yeah. So, Cindy, how do you see the shadow of 187 over these young folks and adults who are now waiting to see what happens to DACA? Does that kind of inform what they're dealing with today?

CARCAMO: It definitely informs them. I think why we even have DACA is because you have immigrant youth who basically took the reins of the immigrant rights movement at a point where it was, like, dwindling, basically. Like, they basically said, look, you older folks in the immigrant rights movement are not doing what you're supposed to be doing. We're going to take control here. And they staged civil disobedience sit-ins...

SANDERS: Against both parties.

CARCAMO: ...Against both parties, right. They basically said, look, we're going to - we're not going to call out our - you know, just Republicans. We're going to call out our supposed allies like Obama.

SANDERS: Yeah. And that's how DACA happened.

CARCAMO: Yeah, right. And that's how DACA...

SANDERS: DACA happened because they pressed Obama

CARCAMO: Yeah. They pressed him. And it's really because of immigrant youth that we have DACA. I mean, I believe it, and some people will argue with me about it. But really, it's because of them. And so it really did help inform this generation of youth.

SANDERS: Yeah. What is the biggest lesson of Prop 187?

CARCAMO: For me, 187 was really interesting. I think I was telling Gustavo this because I went to Chatsworth High School, and a lot of my friends were Anglo. And I didn't realize how racist some of them were until 187 happened.

SANDERS: Oh.

CARCAMO: Yeah.

SANDERS: That's when the cat came out of the bag.

CARCAMO: Yeah. And I'm, like, wait a minute. Look at me. Like...

SANDERS: I'm your friend.

CARCAMO: Yeah, I'm your friend.

(LAUGHTER)

CARCAMO: I look a little white. It's true.

ARELLANO: You're one of the good ones.

CARCAMO: I know. Yeah. That - you know, you become an exception, right...

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: ...Sort of thing. Although we didn't - I just heard what they were saying...

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: And I was, like, whoa. And I didn't - I just don't even mention it.

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: But, you know, I think I grew up kind of in a bubble in regards - I didn't think there was that much racism. I didn't think that I would be ever alienated in that way. But I was. It didn't want to - make me become a journalist or anything along those lines. But it definitely became a handy thing to know about...

SANDERS: Yeah.

CARCAMO: ...Covering immigration (laughter).

SANDERS: Yeah. yeah.

(SOUNDBITE OF FLEVANS' "FLICKER")

SANDERS: All right. It's time for a break. Coming up, we're going to talk with a listener about how our national political debate has affected his local politics. He's a local elected official in Pennsylvania, and he says in many ways, the tenor of local politics is directly driven by the fights happening in D.C. After the break. You're listening to IT'S BEEN A MINUTE from NPR. We'll be right back.

(SOUNDBITE OF FLEVANS' "FLICKER")

SANDERS: We are back. You're listening to IT'S BEEN A MINUTE from NPR, the show where we catch up on the week that was. I'm Sam Sanders here with two guests - Cindy Carcamo, writer for the LA Times covering immigration, and Gustavo Arellano, feature writer at the LA Times, also host of the podcast "This Is California: The Battle Of 187." Before our next segment, question for you both.

ARELLANO: OK.

SANDERS: When is it OK to start playing Christmas music?

ARELLANO: It depends on what the song is.

SANDERS: OK.

CARCAMO: After Thanksgiving.

ARELLANO: Yeah.

SANDERS: Thank you - after Thanksgiving.

CARCAMO: No, not before Halloween, not after Halloween.

SANDERS: I just - like, there's a pace and an order of things...

ARELLANO: Yeah.

SANDERS: ...And Thanksgiving deserves its due.

CARCAMO: I agree. No, I really do.

ARELLANO: See, I never liked Thanksgiving, so I have no sympathy.

CARCAMO: Oh, really?

SANDERS: Why don't you like Thanksgiving?

CARCAMO: I love Thanksgiving.

ARELLANO: I never liked turkey. And my...

SANDERS: Turkey is a bad word.

ARELLANO: One day I'm going to write about this. Thanksgiving was the one day out of the entire year that my mom decided to be an American.

(LAUGHTER)

ARELLANO: We're going to do the turkey, the cranberry, the stuffing. I'm, like, no, the ham. The only thing I liked was the ham, the ham and the little rolls.

CARCAMO: Oh, yeah.

SANDERS: Yeah, turkey and ham.

ARELLANO: Yeah, exactly. But everything else - like, no, why can't we make tamales? Why can't we - like, Mexican Christmas is way better - the tamales, the pozole, the bunuelos. - all of that stuff. Turkey - nah. But that was the one thing.

CARCAMO: Wait - she didn't Mexicanize the turkey?

ARELLANO: No, she...

CARCAMO: We would Guatemala the turkey.

SANDERS: How would you Guatemala the turkey?

CARCAMO: It was - my mom had this special stuffing that was made out of minced meat. It was basically minced meat, so it was meat on meat on meat...

(LAUGHTER)

CARCAMO: ...With olives.

SANDERS: Olives - oh, my God.

ARELLANO: No, Central Americans - they rule the turkey game. Oh, my God.

CARCAMO: We do?

ARELLANO: Oh, yeah.

CARCAMO: I had no idea.

ARELLANO: Pan con chumpe (ph)...

CARCAMO: Oh, I guess so.

ARELLANO: Yeah.

SANDERS: Cranberry sauce in a can or homemade?

CARCAMO: Homemade.

SANDERS: Yeah.

ARELLANO: I think my mom made it homemade. Again, I didn't eat it, so I'm just, like, trying to remember.

(LAUGHTER)

SANDERS: What's y'alls favorite Christmas song when it gets to that point?

CARCAMO: Anything non-Mariah Carey.

SANDERS: (Gasping).

CARCAMO: Sorry.

ARELLANO: I like...

CARCAMO: I can't stand the Mariah Carey...

SANDERS: What?

ARELLANO: "All I Want For Christmas Is You" is a beautiful song.

CARCAMO: I know. I know. It's, like...

ARELLANO: I like that song.

SANDERS: Why don't you like it?

CARCAMO: Because they play it over and over again, and it gets stuck in my head. Like, seriously - like, the radio just plays Mariah Carey Christmas songs a lot.

SANDERS: We're going to get hate mail (laughter).

CARCAMO: I know. Sorry.

SANDERS: (Laughter).

CARCAMO: Yes.

SANDERS: All right. Let's pivot. I want to talk now about local politics. Every week, we hear from our listeners. But recently, we heard from a listener with a very interesting problem. His name is Dan Murphy. He reached out to us after we talked about Mayor Pete - Pete Buttigieg of Indiana. We talked about how in one of the recent Democratic debates, Mayor Pete took a more combative tone with the other candidates. And it got Dan Murphy thinking about the way that he approaches politics where he lives.

Dan is an elected official. He's a member of the Borough Council for State College, Pa. That's like city council. That's the town where Penn State is. And he wrote us to talk about how the tenor of our national politics is affecting him and his local politics in places like State College. So we called him up. Heads up for listeners - there's a bit of offensive language in this conversation ahead. All right, here's our chat.

(SOUNDBITE OF FLEVANS' "FLICKER")

SANDERS: Hey, Dan, how are you?

DAN MURPHY: I'm good, Sam. How are you?

SANDERS: Pretty good. So when you wrote us to talk, you said that you were actually elected as both a Democrat and a Republican. How does that work?

MURPHY: So when I put in my petition to be on the ballot, I got petitions from my Democratic neighbors and friends. And so I found myself on the primary ballot on the Democratic side. But in the process of campaigning and getting to know members of the community, I also asked for my Republican colleagues and neighbors to consider writing me in as a candidate for Borough Council.

SANDERS: And they did.

MURPHY: And they did.

SANDERS: OK.

MURPHY: And I am actually the third top vote-getter on the Republican ballot, in addition to being the third top vote-getter on the Democratic ballot. So I actually went on the general election ballot listed as both a Democrat and a Republican.

SANDERS: That seems like a rarity these days, given our politics.

MURPHY: Indeed. And especially, I think, given the current context, it's difficult to maintain that balance as I approach my work locally, for sure.

SANDERS: Has your style and the way that you talk about politics changed as our national politics has just gotten nastier? Like, do you find yourself a little more strident, a little more loud, a little more combative?

MURPHY: I have my moments (laughter).

SANDERS: When's the - yeah.

MURPHY: I...

SANDERS: When's the last time you yelled?

MURPHY: I yelled on Twitter a couple weeks ago.

SANDERS: (Laughter).

MURPHY: Which I have not - I don't believe that I've yelled in person, though, I think the last couple of weeks locally has been a little bit of fun for us as we go about the process of appointing an interim mayor. I've been accused of yelling.

SANDERS: You've been accused of yelling.

MURPHY: Yes. And I was perhaps highlighting language that was coded in ways that is meant to exclude people from being involved in the local process.

SANDERS: Explain.

MURPHY: It's part of selecting a mayor. We - appointing a mayor. You know, we wanted to have a conversation around what kind of guidelines or considerations we wanted to have for the person who would be appointed to fill out a two-year term.

As I reviewed them, I found that some of the guidelines would not only render me kind of ineligible to serve as a potential mayor based on my employer and based on my years of service in the community and based on my lack of experience in certain areas of local government, but they really were kind of intended to maintain a status quo. And that kind of started a whole thing. So that's when I yelled into the Twitterverse about...

SANDERS: What did you yell on Twitter?

MURPHY: Well, I dropped my first F-bomb. Sorry, Mom.

SANDERS: Oh.

MURPHY: You know, I...

SANDERS: Read the tweet. Read the tweet. Can you read the tweet? I'm curious.

MURPHY: I can.

SANDERS: OK.

MURPHY: Yeah, want me...

SANDERS: Let's do it.

MURPHY: Oh, here it was. I said (reading) wrote a thread, but [expletive] it. To suggest a full-time employee of Penn State is incapable of serving as mayor of State College because of conflict of interest, bias or bias is an ignorant and seriously misinformed take. Just because it's a take shared by many doesn't make it any less so.

SANDERS: Do you think that tweet was good for the discourse or bad for the discourse?

MURPHY: I hovered over the Tweet button for a very long time admittedly because I see what someone tweeting has done to the political discourse. But I also know that I tweet out the agenda every single week for our council meetings and still only get one or two people to show up or get only a handful of people to pay attention. And that tweet itself got more engagement than just about anything else I have tweeted about in public service.

SANDERS: (Laughter) Wow.

MURPHY: And, you know, instead of a handful of people at council meetings, last week and this week, there were maybe 20 to 30 individuals there who all had opinions and really...

SANDERS: And you think because of the F-bomb tweet?

MURPHY: I don't think it's the tweet itself that did it, but I think the tweet caught the attention.

SANDERS: Yeah.

MURPHY: But I did think a great deal about it before I hit send.

SANDERS: Yeah. Hearing you tell this story, it seems like a microcosm for all of our politics right now. We're in this moment where everyone is angry - it seems. Everyone kind of wants to yell because we feel strongly about this stuff. We know that the yell may get more attention than not yelling, but we also know ultimately if everyone is yelling all the time that just is bad (laughter).

MURPHY: Oh, yeah. Absolutely.

SANDERS: So, like, what is the way forward in that kind of environment?

MURPHY: You ask a great question that I'm trying to navigate and figure out for myself. You know, the House of Representatives and the Senate, they've got these large number of people who all need to vote. And they need to get to consensus on something. We've got seven, right? These are people I know. We shop at the stores together. We work together. Like, you know, these are people that I can't just kind of stoke the conversation and then throw my hands up of any and absolve myself of any responsibility to help guide us forward. I need to be part of the solution.

And so, you know, will I ever - will I never drop an F-bomb again in a tweet? I can't make that promise. But the fact that it was the first time I've done it in two years and I'm clearly still thinking about it, might suggest that, you know, I'm going to check myself. And I'm going to understand that while I might be using some of the angst of the moment politically to help engage more people in the conversation, I also have a responsibility not to go too far with that because what we can't have is the same level of animosity locally that we're experiencing kind of exponentially as a country.

SANDERS: Yeah. I do want to ask about what it's like to be you where you are right now as an elected official who may very well see some of the folks that were yelling at you at the meeting at the grocery store. Is it weird sometimes, especially in this moment of seemingly endless political acrimony?

MURPHY: It certainly is weird. And one of the things I've learned through this whole process, though, is that because I have this immediate accountability that I don't think exists in state capitals or in Washington, it has forced me to be much more thoughtful about my decision making before I vote or take action on something. And as long as I'm able to have a quick conversation where I'm able to explain myself, to be able to take in the feedback that they're providing to me and, you know, committing to making sure that I keep that in mind but also not allowing the conversation to just continue unproductively.

SANDERS: Yeah.

MURPHY: I'm always eager to engage someone in productive conversation that moves us forward.

SANDERS: Yeah. Last question for you.

MURPHY: All right.

SANDERS: You're someone who deals with politics a lot - more than most people. What advice would you have for folks like me out in the world who feel like all of our politics right now is a little bit too nasty and a little bit too loud? What advice would you give to people who say, hey, I still want to stick to my ideals when it comes to politics and stand on what I believe, but I also would like if the temperature were lowered?

MURPHY: I think one of the first pieces is if you're interested in - if one of your concerns about engaging in the political conversation or the political discourse is about the temperature of that conversation, the first thing we need to do is do a self-assessment and figure out where - what our read is. What's our temperature? The other piece is - I have found that the young people in our community, they give me so much incredible hope. I was actually meeting with a class of sixth-graders a couple weeks ago. And they just asked some of the most thoughtful questions that I've been asked in two years. And I - in that moment, I was like, I need to spend more time with you all. Or like I need to spend more time around the people that are trying to tackle these issues and the challenges in a way that's not just getting caught up in the news cycle but is really thinking about, where do we go from here? And who do we position next to lead us there?

SANDERS: Yeah. What I hear you saying is that you believe the children are our future. Que Whitney Houston.

MURPHY: I - it's true. I do believe that. Yeah.

SANDERS: (Laughter) Dan, I am so glad that we got to talk. And I hope you have a really wonderful weekend.

MURPHY: Thank you. I really appreciate the opportunity to talk with you. And you do the same.

SANDERS: All right. Thank you so much.

MURPHY: All right. Thank you, Sam.

SANDERS: Bye-bye.

MURPHY: Bye.

(SOUNDBITE OF FLEVANS' "FLICKER")

SANDERS: All right. Thanks again to Dan Murphy. He's a member of the Borough Council for State College, Pa. Time for a break. When we come back, my favorite game, Who Said That? You are listening to IT'S BEEN A MINUTE from NPR. We'll be right back.

(SOUNDBITE OF FLEVANS' "FLICKER")

SANDERS: You're listening to IT'S BEEN A MINUTE from NPR, the show where we catch up on the week that was. I'm Sam Sanders, here with two guests - Cindy Carcamo, writer for the LA Times covering immigration and Gustavo Arellano, feature writer for the LA Times covering Southern California. All right. It's time for my favorite game, Who Said That?

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF ATLANTA")

KANDI BURRUSS: Who had been saying that?

PORSHA WILLIAMS: Who said that?

KENYA MOORE: Who said that?

SANDERS: Cindy, you've played before.

CARCAMO: Ah, this stresses me out (laughter).

SANDERS: Gustavo, it's your first time.

ARELLANO: This is my first time playing. But I hear it.

SANDERS: The game is really simple. I share three quotes from the week of news.

CARCAMO: Right.

SANDERS: You guess who said that.

CARCAMO: We're ready.

SANDERS: Or get the story I'm talking about. The winner gets nothing.

ARELLANO: (Laughter).

CARCAMO: Sweet.

SANDERS: All right. Here we go. First quote - "It took me a long time. But I'm very happy being single. I call it being self-partnered."

CINDY CARCAMO AND GUSTAVO ARELLANO: Oh.

ARELLANO: Oh. Oh. Oh, my God.

CARCAMO: It's some celebrity.

SANDERS: Yes.

ARELLANO: It's the - she play - she was in the "Harry Potter" movies.

SANDERS: Yes.

ARELLANO: Emilia.

CARCAMO: Oh.

SANDERS: It starts with a E.

CARCAMO: Emily something. No?

SANDERS: You're close.

ARELLANO: Emily Blunt. Emily Stone.

SANDERS: No.

CARCAMO: Emma.

SANDERS: Emma what? (Laughter).

ARELLANO: Emma Wright? Emma Thompson?

CARCAMO: Not Watson?

SANDERS: Yes. Yes. Yes.

CARCAMO: All right.

(LAUGHTER)

SANDERS: That was Emma Watson in an interview with British Vogue, and she was talking about feeling stressed and anxious about turning 30 because of the pressures on her personal life and being single, et cetera.

ARELLANO: (Speaking Spanish).

(LAUGHTER)

SANDERS: But now she says she's happy with her life and where she is and she's happy being single. And she calls it being self-partnered.

ARELLANO: Good for her.

CARCAMO: Yeah.

SANDERS: It makes me think of the whole conscious uncoupling.

ARELLANO: Gwyneth, yeah.

CARCAMO: Yeah. Yeah.

SANDERS: Just call a thing what it is.

CARCAMO: Yeah, yeah, why do you have to put a label on it?

SANDERS: You're single, you're single. You're divorced, you're divorced. It's OK. Be happy. This next one's kind of hard, so I'll give you two quotes.

CARCAMO: OK.

SANDERS: The first quote is "OK, Burma."

ARELLANO: "OK, Burma?"

CARCAMO: Not OK, burmer (ph) - I mean, boomer.

ARELLANO: Not OK, boomer, yeah.

SANDERS: "OK, Burma," yeah.

ARELLANO: Oh, jeez.

SANDERS: The second quote is "We apologize for the error and have updated the captions accordingly. Clearly, we need to start doing all-office meme briefings"

ARELLANO: Oh, I heard about this one, too.

CARCAMO: I'm completely lost.

SANDERS: OK, just throw out what you heard about.

ARELLANO: It can't be The New York Times.

SANDERS: Yeah, this happened outside of the country.

CARCAMO: Spain?

SANDERS: It's where "Lord Of The Rings" was shot.

ARELLANO: Oh, New Zealand.

SANDERS: Yes.

ARELLANO: All right, one.

SANDERS: OK. OK. OK. Yes, so...

CARCAMO: All right, one-one (laughter).

ARELLANO: One-one, yeah.

CARCAMO: Barely.

SANDERS: ...So OK Burma was a misspelling of the catch phrase OK boomer. This misspelling came from the captions department of New Zealand's Parliament TV. So 25-five-year-old Chloe Swarbrick was making a speech about the climate crisis. She made a reference to her age and the average age of Parliament, and an older politician tried to heckle her.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

CHLOE SWARBRICK: In the year 2050, I will be 56 years old. Yet right now, the average age of this 52nd Parliament is 49 years old. OK, boomer.

ARELLANO: (Laughter).

SANDERS: And then the captions from the New Zealand Parliament TV service misspelled it as OK, Burma, which was not fun.

ARELLANO: Which is funny because you would expect it's the New Zealand - you know, it's in New Zealand, so you would understand New Zealand accents.

SANDERS: Yeah.

ARELLANO: It's one thing - because I heard it as, like, Burma (ph) you know?

CARCAMO: I could see that.

ARELLANO: Yeah, I could see that. But it's like, they should know their own accents, so they shouldn't have gotten it wrong. So I guess...

SANDERS: That's kind of a boomer mistake, no?

ARELLANO: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

ARELLANO: It's totally a boomer mistake.

CARCAMO: Yes.

SANDERS: So after this error, the New Zealand Parliament TV tweeted, quote, "we apologize for the error."

I think y'all are tied.

ARELLANO: Yeah, we are.

SANDERS: This is the last one for all the marbles.

CARCAMO: Oh, man.

SANDERS: You ready? And just guess what story we're talking about from the week for this one - "what was amazing to me was how few people wanted to go grab him."

ARELLANO: Oh, World Series.

(SOUNDBITE OF BUZZER)

SANDERS: That's over. Another sport, another sporting event.

ARELLANO: Grab him.

SANDERS: It happened during a football game this week.

ARELLANO: Oh, was it about a black cat?

SANDERS: Yeah.

ARELLANO: Yes.

SANDERS: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF VICTORY TUNE)

SANDERS: All right. All right.

CARCAMO: All right, Gustavo won.

ARELLANO: ESPN.

SANDERS: So that quote comes from Jerry Jones. He is the billionaire owner of the Dallas Cowboys, and he was commenting on a very strange thing that happened at an NFL game this week. A cat got on the field at MetLife Stadium during the Cowboys and Giants game. The game was delayed. It was crazy, crazy, crazy. We actually have some tape of the announcers talking us all through the cat on the field.

CARCAMO: Oh, my gosh.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDIND)

UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER: Oh, there's a cat on - a black cat has taken the field. A black cat is running from the 20 to the near side, the 10...

CARCAMO: OK.

SANDERS: (Laughter).

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER: Now a policeman - a state trooper's come on the field. And the cat runs into the end zone. That is a touchdown.

SANDERS: I love it.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER: And the cat is elusive.

SANDERS: This is the only time in my life that I've liked a cat.

(LAUGHTER)

CARCAMO: That's so funny.

ARELLANO: Yeah, it got more rushing yards than both the Giants and the Cowboys this year.

SANDERS: (Laughter).

ARELLANO: So they should have signed him or something.

SANDERS: Signed the black cat.

ARELLANO: But I always love the stories. It comes out every couple years of just a random animal coming on the field and causing havoc. I remember - jeez, it must have been 20 years ago - during a New Year's Eve college football bowl game, a dog just got on the field. He just started running around, like no care in the world and no one could catch it. So God bless you black cat.

CARCAMO: (Laughter).

SANDERS: I'm happy to announce that Gustavo won the game.

ARELLANO: Yeah.

CARCAMO: It's all good. I knew it would happen.

(LAUGHTER)

SANDERS: You both did quite well. I promise, you did really, really well.

ARELLANO: Yeah, you have to spell out one of the answers for us.

CARCAMO: I know. We still did...

SANDERS: I helped y'all a lot. I helped y'all a lot. It's OK. It's OK. All right, that concludes Who Said That? Gustavo, congratulations, but you get nothing. Sorry about that.

ARELLANO: I get to be on this show, so it was awesome. That's my...

SANDERS: I appreciate that.

ARELLANO: ...That's my reward.

SANDERS: Now it's time to end the show as we always do. Every Friday, we ask our listeners to share with us the best things that have happened to them all week. We encourage folks to brag. They do. Let's hear it.

VINNY: Hey, Sam. This is Vinny (ph) from New York. And the best part of my week was I just finished the New York City Marathon. Every single time during my training runs, I would listen to your show and the best part of other people's week would always inspire me. So thank you for that. I love the show. Have a great day.

EMILY #1: Hi, Sam. This is Emily (ph) from the U.K. The best part of my week was going to see "Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire" in concert with my orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall.

KESENIA: The best part of my week was celebrating my husband's 27th birthday.

ASHLYN: I finally got my postgraduate job offer.

CHRISTIAN: After six months away, the best part of my week is finalizing a move to New York City to reunite with my husband, Jorge (ph).

KIMBERLY: My 8-month-old daughter took her first steps.

EMILY #2: My son, who's about to turn 1, said Mama. It's taken him a very long time, and it's been many months of Dada.

KATE: The best part of my week was when my 2-year-old came up to me and said love you (laughter). And then he says love finger (laughter), love door - but whatever, it's OK. It's cool. I'll take it. It was amazing.

DENISE: Hi, Sam. This is Denise (ph) from La Crescenta, Calif. The best part of my week was taking my 88-year-old mother, my 90-year-old father to visit my 97-year-old aunt. After lunch, we took a walk around her two-acre property. No one needed any assistance. And it made me smile and look forward to a future where I could do the same. Thanks.

KATE: Thanks.

CHRISTIAN: Thank you for everything that you do.

EMILY #1: Hope you're having a great week.

ASHLYN: Bye.

SANDERS: That's pretty awesome.

ARELLANO: That was awesome.

CARCAMO: That's great.

SANDERS: Really, really cool. Also kids, they sound kind of fun. One day I'll get one, I guess (laughter).

CARCAMO: First thing my daughter said to me, like, a full sentence was I see you.

SANDERS: Oh.

(LAUGHTER)

ARELLANO: Wow.

CARCAMO: I was like, yes, you do.

SANDERS: Yes, you do. Thanks to all those listeners you just heard. Vinny, congrats on finishing your marathon. And I was - I'm honored to have been a part of your process for that. Emily in the U.K., Kesenia (ph), Ashlyn (ph), Christian (ph), Kimberly (ph), Emily (ph), Kate (ph) and Denise - really loved hearing from y'all. We listen to all of these that come in, so keep them coming. Thank you for sharing them. You can share your best part of your week at any point throughout any week. Just record the sound of your voice on your phone and email that voice file to me at samsanders@npr.org, samsanders@npr.org.

Thanks again to both of you, Cindy Carcamo, writer for the LA Times, and Gustavo Arellano, also a writer for the LA Times, also host of the podcast "This Is California: The Battle Of 187." I'm so glad y'all made the trip from Orange County to hang out with me.

CARCAMO: Thank you for having us.

ARELLANO: Gracias.

SANDERS: Come back anytime. This week, IT's BEEN A MINUTE was produced by Brent Baughman and Anjuli Sastry. Our fearless editors are Kitty Eisele and Alex McCall. Our director of programming is Steve Nelson. Our big boss, NPR's senior VP of programming, is Anya Grundmann. Our engineer is Josh Newell. And we had special help this week from NPR intern Isaura Aceves.

Thank you for listening. Till next time, I'm Sam Sanders. Talk soon.

(SOUNDBITE OF FLEVANS' "FLICKER")

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