Tonight, last week, a 13 year-old Staten Island boy committed suicide, claiming in a note that he was bullied and although he sought help at his school, there was no intervention. The boy, Daniel Fitzpatrick, is sadly just one example of the high costs of bullying. Nearly six years ago, 18 year-old Tyler Clementi became the victim of bullying when his roommate at Rutgers University publicly outed his sexual orientation online. The ridicule proved to be too much for Tyler and he ended his life. Tyler Clementi’s mother, Jane, and older brother, James, join us to talk about their personal tragedy and how through their tragedy, they hope to teach tolerance. For more information and resources on bullying, please go to MetroFocus.org/bullying.
Next, although a motive is still being sought in the murder of an Imam and his assistant in Queens, mosque officials and those within the community are certain that the killing was carried out as an act of hate. And if that, in fact, is true, this would not be the first event of its kind in this borough of New York. In June, a man was beaten outside of his mosque in Jamaica, and two Muslim women were harassed on the subway for wearing hijabs. A new Huffington Post initiative is tracking these acts of Islamophobia across the U.S. in the hopes of confronting the hate that drives these attacks. Two journalists spearheading the initiative, Rowaida Abdelaziz and Christopher Mathias will join us to talk about their work and what they hope to achieve with it.
Finally, in April of this year, we reported on 50 New York millionaires who wrote a letter to Governor Cuomo asking to pay higher taxes to provide public programs and revitalize infrastructure. Among those signers was notable filmmaker and heir to the Disney empire, Abigail Disney, who shared her thought with us earlier this year. But is that solution realistic? Tonight we talk to Travis Brown, author of the book “How Money Walks,” and he’ll lets us know why this tax, although it sounds good, might cause more harm than good.