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Quick Guide & Transcript: 9/11 anniversary, Hurricane Katrina

SPECIAL REPORT

• Rebuilding: Vital signs
• Gallery: Landmarks over time
• Storm & Flood: Making history
• I-Report: Share your photos

(CNN Student News) -- September 12, 2005

Quick Guide

9/11 Anniversary - Remember a tragedy that affected millions of lives four years ago.

Project Backpack - Meet a group of students who are helping hurricane victims by packing more than books into backpacks.

Roberts Hearings - Find out what factors in to the confirmation process for a Supreme Court nominee.

Transcript

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

JUDY FORTIN, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Thanks for kicking off your school week with CNN Student News! I'm Judy Fortin. In the midst of one tragedy the nation pauses to remember another that claimed thousands of lives, four years ago. In the spirit of goodwill, a trio of sisters, packs a few thousand bags with provisions for function and fun. And in a working example of advice and consent, The senate takes up the possibility of appointing Judge John Roberts, to the highest seat in the nations highest court.

First Up: 9/11 Anniversary

FORTIN: Flowers were laid, prayers were said, and tributes were made across the country yesterday to the 2,749 people killed in the September 11th terrorist attacks. Most of the victims died when two planes crashed into the towers of the world trade center and they collapsed four years ago; Others were killed in the attack on the Pentagon or died aboard a jet that crashed in rural Pennsylvania. Tim Rury has more on how the nation marked the somber anniversary amid the efforts to deal with a new national tragedy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TIM RURY, CNN REPORTER: Head bowed... President Bush, Vice President Cheney and their wives stood silent at the White House remembering the devastation befallen on the United States four years ago.

This anniversary, when Americans are facing the aftermath of hurricane Katrina, the sense of unity in the face of disaster has again resurfaced.

MAYOR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG, NEW YORK CITY: We are reminded that there are ties between all men and women, that we are all linked to one another in our common humanity, that in a fundamental way, we are all brothers and sisters. To Americans suffering in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina our deepest sympathies go out to you this today.

RURY: Bells tolled and four moments of silence observed. Brothers and sisters of those who perished on 9/11 read the list of names; one by one.

CHRIS BURKE, LOST BROTHER AT WORLD TRADE CENTER: Love you, and I'll see you just a little further down the road. If it's a boy in December we're taking your name... we love and miss you

RURY: From the reflecting pool at ground zero to Arlington National Cemetery, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Gen. Richard Myers honored lives lost at the Pentagon and echoed the military's mantra that "failure is not an option."

And in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, passengers and crew of flight 93 were remembered as heroes like their counterparts in New York and Washington. Tim Rury, reporting from Atlanta.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

Fast Facts

AZUZ: Time for some Fast Facts!

  • Arlington National Cemetery was established in 1864.
  • More then 300,000 people are buried there, from veterans of every U.S. war to former slaves to astronauts.
  • An average of 28 funerals take place there per day.
  • Its Tomb of the Unknowns houses the remains of soldiers from World Wars I and II and the Korean Conflict.
  • Promo

    FORTIN: Those buried at Arlington played an important role in the shaping of a nation. And taking a deeper look at some of U.S. history's most significant events, is what today's learning activity is all about. Find it for free at CNN.com/EDUCATION!

    Katrina Update

    FORTIN: As of last night, 40 percent of New Orleans remained under water, down from 80 percent in the days that followed Hurricane Katrina. Drying out the city is the main priority of Vice Admiral Thad Allen, who recently took over the job of overseeing relief efforts. FEMA Director Michael Brown was called back to Washington on Thursday night. Meanwhile, two-thousand-dollar debit cards were handed out to evacuees staying in shelters in Texas; other families will receive the money through mailing addresses or bank accounts.

    Project Backpack

    FORTIN: Thousands of hurricane victims your age are getting a sack-full of help from three sisters in Maryland. The oldest of the girls, who's 14, decided that packing a bag full of needed and wanted supplies, would carry a special kind of assistance to kids who need it. Here's Gary Nurenberg with a story of student-driven charity.

    (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

    MELISSA KANTOR, PROJECT BACKPACK: Do we have any books for like, kids?

    JENNA KANTOR, PROJECT BACKPACK: What are you doing?

    JACKIE KANTOR, PROJECT BACKPACK: I'm going to have a problem getting back in there.

    MELISSA KANTOR: Here's two to five unisex, right here

    JACKIE KANTOR: I have a lunch box

    GARY NURENBERG, CNN REPORTER: This is project backpack. It started with three sisters trying to decide what they could do to help kids displaced by Katrina.

    MELISSA KANTOR: I would want something to comfort me and something to make me feel better.

    JACKIE KANTOR: I've got Barbie dolls.

    JENNA KANTOR: We wanted them to have something with them that they know is theirs and that they can carry around

    NURENBERG: So they made an appeal on three school listservs for backpacks, supplies, and volunteers.

    JACKIE KANTOR: And from there people just sent it to their churches, their synagogues. Someone sent it to the Australian embassy. I mean it was just ridiculous how far it went and by that time we started getting volunteers.

    KANTOR: Want to take some more of this stuff for the older children in?

    NURENBERG: Lots of volunteers and a mountain of backpacks--stacked in corners, sliding on floors, filling buckets flying through the air

    KANTOR: They're desperate please come and help!

    NURENBERG: The backpacks are stuffed with essentials in a production line with a plan.

    MELISSA KANTOR: Kids would know what other kids want so we're trying to encourage like 11 year olds like me to pack for an 11 year old.

    NURENBERG: But its more than toothpaste and pencils.

    JACKIE KANTOR: I just hope they have fun with this..they open it up and go oh that's so awesome, I'm so excited! I just hope they have fun that's what I hope for.

    NURENBERG: Response has been so overwhelming the project hopes to employ for one week 20 evacuees from this shelter in Washington to help pack more backpacks. For the kids its been a lesson.

    MELISSA KANTOR: Giving money to the Red Cross is good but it didn't make me feel like I did anything. But if you make a backpack then you are actually able to put the love and care into the backpack that kids will get.

    NURENBERG: The first shipment left Maryland over the weekend, bound for Houston, Louisiana and Mississippi, an attempt by kids to make it easier for other kids to shoulder the burden of life after Katrina. Gary Nurenberg, Washington.

    (END VIDEO CLIP)

    ID Me

    AZUZ: See if you can ID Me! I was born in 1955 and graduated from Harvard Law School 24 years later. As a government and private practice attorney, I argued 39 cases before the Supreme Court. I was nominated to become chief justice of the United States on September 5th. John G. Roberts once worked as a clerk for the late Supreme Court Justice William Rehnquist.

    Roberts Hearings

    FORTIN: Roberts is also President Bush's nominee to fill an opening at the nation's highest court, which starts its fall term on October third. Since appointments to the bench are for life, senators will be looking very closely at Roberts' record before they make a decision. Deanna Morawski elaborates on what will factor in to their vote.

    (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

    DEANNA MORAWSKI, CNN STUDENT NEWS REPORTER: It's been more than 11 years since there's been a vacancy on the Supreme Court, and now there are two. In July, President Bush announced he wanted John Roberts to fill the first one - left open by the retiring Sandra Day O'Connor. But when Chief Justice William Rehnquist died earlier this month, Bush nominated Roberts to succeed him instead.

    U.S. PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: It is fitting that a great Chief Justice be followed in office by a person who shared his deep reverence for the constitution, his profound respect for the Supreme Court, and his complete devotion to the cause of justice. Congratulations.

    MORAWSKI: Article Two of the Constitution gives the president responsibility for appointing Supreme Court justices, it also says that his pick needs "the advice and consent of the Senate."

    That means that key senators - especially those on the Judiciary Committee - are usually consulted in advance about potential nominees. After a nomination's been made, the judiciary committee holds a public hearing. That's what starts today in Washington.

    But before that happens, senators study up on the candidate. In Roberts case - as with others - that included a committee request for documents relating to his government service - documents that Democrats have accused the White House of being slow to provide.

    SENATOR CHARLES SCHUMER (D-NY): Because of the unilaterally restricted documentary record of Judge Roberts, the upcoming hearings in the Judiciary Committee will be vastly more important than usual.

    MORAWSKI: Democrats say the 65,000-plus pages of documents that were provided indicate that Roberts holds strongly conservative views on issues, including prayer in public schools and abortion. But hard-line conservative critics say Roberts has supported more liberal causes, citing his pro bono work for gay rights activists.

    The debate between supporters and critics will play out during Roberts' hearing, with opponents asking tough questions..the candidate wording answers carefully in an effort to avoid controversy.

    When the hearing ends, the committee will vote and report to the full Senate. To be confirmed, Roberts needs a majority there as well. President Bush has made it clear he wants a quick confirmation.

    BUSH: It is in the interests of the court and the country to have a chief justice on the bench on the first full day of the fall term.

    MORAWSKI: It's anyone's guess how long Roberts' confirmation will take; though it took less than a week for five of the last six candidates. It's possible he could be sworn in by the end of this month. For CNN Student News, I'm Deanna Morawski.

    (END VIDEO CLIP)

    Before We Go

    FORTIN: Before we go... A few residents of New Orleans Aquarium of the Americas, have been transferred to other locations. Others were released into the Gulf of Mexico; this guy and a bunch of his pals, flew to California's Monterey Bay Aquarium on a plane, of course -- penguins are flightless. 19 black-footed penguins and two sea otters got to travel in style, aboard a private, chartered jet.

    Goodbye

    FORTIN: The VIP treatment, with a "p" for penguin! Thats all for CNN Student News-- I'm Judy Fortin.

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