Episode
July 12, 2016 at 5:30 am

Tonight, the events of last week concerning the police shooting in Dallas and the deaths of 37 year old Alton Sterling in Louisiana, and 32 year old Philando Castile in Minnesota still affects the nation as it mourns and struggles with what comes next. Sterling died after being pinned down and fatally shot by police officers, and nearly 24 hours later, Castile was shot during a traffic stop and passed away shortly after. In response to the loss of those lives, protests erupted across the country, including Dallas, Texas, where a march for peace turned deadly when 25 year old army reserve veteran Micah Johnson gunned down and killed five police officers and injured more. Johnson was taken out by law enforcement shortly after, and bomb-making material was confirmed to have been found in his house over the weekend. Tonight, we have Manhattan Institute Fellow and author of War on Cops: How the New Attack on Law and Order Makes Everyone Less Safe Heather MacDonald and NYPD veteran Darrin Porcher to put these events in perspective. Finally, sometimes, it’s good to get out into nature and get some fresh air, and that’s what Emmy award-winning journalist Michael Schneider is encouraging people to do with a new series on NJTV. On the Trail with Mike Schneider will guide viewers through the flora and fauna of America’s most iconic and breathtaking scenery. Schneider joins us to talk about this new series and how it’s looking to leave an impact. The first premieres and brings the great outdoors to your home on Wednesday, July 13 at 8 p.m. on NJTV.

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Episode
July 09, 2016 at 5:31 am

It is the worst attack on our nation’s law enforcement since 9/11, the result of 2 police shootings, 2 videos and 2 black men dead. A peaceful protest in Dallas, Texas turned deadly last night when shots were fired in what appeared to be an orchestrated sniper attack. 12 officers were struck, 5 were killed and 2 civilians were wounded. The protest was one of many across the nation, in reaction to two officer involved shootings of African-American men in just two days. Those men were, 37 year old Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and 32 year old Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota. The gunman, who died in a standoff with police, was ID’d as a 25 year old Army reservist who had served in Afghanistan. The first of his victims to be identified, was a former U.S. Marine and veteran cop who ironically had trained local police in Iraq and Afghanistan. And while the gunman claimed to have worked alone, police are still investigating possible suspects who may or may not have been complicit. Here in New York, dozens were arrested last night as more protests are expected this evening. We’ll speak with retired NYPD lieutenant Darrin Porcher, Vice President of Stratfor Intelligence and Former State Department special agent Scott Stewart, and Brooklyn NAACP President L. Joy Williams to discuss the effects of this tragedy on law enforcement, the black community and the nation. And we’ll go to Dallas for a report by WFAA’s Ron Corning on the latest on the sentiment within the community in the wake of this tragedy.

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Episode
July 08, 2016 at 5:30 am

Tonight, former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson filed a sexual harassment claim against her former boss Roger Ailes, one of the most powerful media executives in America. Tonight, Gretchen gets real and shares in detail about her past personal journey as the victim of the sexual assault she was subjected to as she built her early career in television. Next, every June, the New York Yankees reach out to shine a spotlight on five people, families, or organizations that are giving back to the community and impacting them in a positive way. This year, one of the honorees Alvin Irby has been recognized for starting a non-profit called Barbershop Books, which helps young boys connect and get excited about reading. We were invited to help tell that story and get in on the fun as a group of school children were surprised by several Yankee players at a Harlem Bookshop. Then, more and more families are turning to New York City’s homeless shelters as an affordable housing crisis grips the region. In fact, the city’s 2016 Social Indicators Report shows that nearly 65,000 people entered city homeless shelters in 2015, and more than two thirds were families with children. Now, the NYC Department of Social Services has partnered with WNET Public Media to open a children’s waiting room in the homeless services intake center. MetroFocus contributor Andrea Vasquez takes us to the new space, designed to let children play and learn while their parents undergo the long process of entering the homeless system. Finally, every once in a while, a band comes together and redefines an entire genre of music that influences a generation. In the 50’s, there was the Four Seasons, in the 60’s there was the Beatles, and in the 70’s there was the Ramones, and they took punk to another level. The band took shape in Forest Hills, Queens, and their 1976 debut album titled simply “The Ramones” launched a career that spanned two decades. Although the four original Ramones from Forest Hills have since passed away, their music and their fans live on. Now, the Queens Museum is displaying their art and other memorabilia in an exhibit called “Hey! Ho! Let’s Go: The Ramones and the Birth of Punk.” We take you through the exhibit and talk about the illustrious career of these punk rockers.

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Clip
July 07, 2016 at 6:27 pm

More and more families are turning to New York City’s homeless shelters as an affordable housing crisis grips the region. In fact, the city’s 2016 Social Indicators Report shows that nearly 65,000 people entered city homeless shelters in 2015, and more than two thirds were families with children. Now, the NYC Department of Social Services has partnered with WNET Public Media to open a children’s waiting room in the homeless services intake center. MetroFocus contributor Andrea Vasquez takes us to the new space, designed to let children play and learn while their parents undergo the long process of entering the homeless system.

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Episode
July 02, 2016 at 5:30 am

Tonight, every weekday over 200,000 people use the “L” train to shuttle between Brooklyn and Manhattan, and now, talks of a shutdown could mean that all of them would need to find another way to get around. The reason? The tunnel linking the two boroughs has needed repairs since Superstorm Sandy flooded the city in 2012. And while another option is on the table, that plan would take twice as long as a full tunnel shutdown and drastically reduce service on one of the city’s busiest subway lines. Vincent Barone, a transportation reporter for amNewYork, is on top of this story and joins us tonight to break down both options and tell us what a shutdown could mean for the city.

Next, the Orlando massacre was a harrowing reminder of the legitimate safety fears that members of the LGBT community face every day. For LGBT youth, these alarming challenges of harassment, abuse, and bullying can be part of their daily lives as they go to school. Research shows that more than 81 percent of LGBT youth reported being harassed because of their sexual orientation. Now, New York City’s Department of Education has taken an important step in providing positive and supportive school environments for LGBT students. For the first time, the department is hiring an LGBT community liaison to facilitate making schools an inclusive space for these students and developing an LGBT curriculum for teachers. New York City Council Member Daniel Dromm spearheaded this initiative and he joins us tonight to talk about it.

Finally, Political commentator and #1 New York Times best-selling author Brad Thor has written over 16 books featuring Scot Haravath, a former navy seal turned espionage and counter-terrorism operative. In his latest installment to this thriller series, Foreign Agent, the story continues as Haravath goes on a journey to track down a dangerous terrorist. It’s certainly a story that bears relevance to current events, and Thor is with us today to talk about the Orlando terror attacks, his latest novel, and to speak on some controversial statements he made on the Glenn Beck Show

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Clip
July 01, 2016 at 6:28 pm

The Orlando massacre was a harrowing reminder of the legitimate safety fears that members of the LGBT community face every day. For LGBT youth, these alarming challenges of harassment, abuse, and bullying can be part of their daily lives as they go to school. Research shows that more than 81 percent of LGBT youth reported being harassed because of their sexual orientation. Now, New York City’s Department of Education has taken an important step in providing positive and supportive school environments for LGBT students. For the first time, the department is hiring an LGBT community liaison to facilitate making schools an inclusive space for these students and developing an LGBT curriculum for teachers. New York City Council Member Daniel Dromm spearheaded this initiative and he joins us tonight to talk about it.

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Clip
July 01, 2016 at 6:27 pm

Political commentator and #1 New York Times best-selling author Brad Thor has written over 16 books featuring Scot Haravath, a former navy seal turned espionage and counter-terrorism operative. In his latest installment to this thriller series, Foreign Agent, the story continues as Haravath goes on a journey to track down a dangerous terrorist. It’s certainly a story that bears relevance to current events, and Thor is with us today to talk about the Orlando terror attacks, his latest novel, and to speak on some controversial statements he made on the Glenn Beck Show.

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Episode
June 29, 2016 at 5:30 am

Some of New York’s top politicians – both past and present – have been making headlines for all the wrong reasons as of late. Tonight we’ll begin a new series called Corruption Watch, which takes you inside the most prominent public corruption cases from our area. Former federal prosecutor Jennifer Rodgers is the executive director of the Center for the Advancement of Public Integrity, and she joins us with her take on the ongoing investigations of Mayor Bill de Blasio and his administration. Rodgers will also tell us what a U.S. Supreme Court decision could mean for former state lawmakers Sheldon Silver and Dean Skelos, who were convicted of corruption in separate cases and sentenced to federal prison last month.

Then, a Frontline documentary, airing tonight at 10 p.m. on PBS, takes a look at one police department that has been asked to change their process of policing. The force in question is that of the one in Newark, New Jersey. A three-year probe found that 75% of stops by officers in that city had no legal justification. New Yorker writer, Jelani Cobb, had the chance to spend time with the force on the frontline and he joins us to discuss his provocative documentary which explores whether the police department in Newark is changing its ways amid violent crime that continues to plague their city.

Finally, it seems the world still cannot believe that its beloved ‘King of Pop,’ Michael Jackson, has been dead for just under seven years. Mystery still surrounds the final days of this international pop star’s life, and the events that led up to his demise. Host of The Tavis Smiley Show and author of Before You Judge Me: The Triumph and Tragedy of Michael Jackson’s Last Days, Tavis Smiley is a huge fan of MJ himself, and he joins us to discuss the final days of this legend’s life, and how he continues to impact his fans years later.

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Clip
June 28, 2016 at 6:29 pm

Some of New York’s top politicians – both past and present – have been making headlines for all the wrong reasons as of late. Tonight we’ll begin a new series called Corruption Watch, which takes you inside the most prominent public corruption cases from our area. Former federal prosecutor Jennifer Rodgers is the executive director of the Center for the Advancement of Public Integrity, and she joins us with her take on the ongoing investigations of Mayor Bill de Blasio and his administration. Rodgers will also tell us what a U.S. Supreme Court decision could mean for former state lawmakers Sheldon Silver and Dean Skelos, who were convicted of corruption in separate cases and sentenced to federal prison last month.

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MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, the Anderson Family Fund, Judy and Josh Weston, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Rosalind P. Walter, The Dorothy Schiff Endowment for News and Public Affairs Programming, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Jody and John Arnhold, the Tiger Baron Foundation, the Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation, the Metropolitan Media Fund, Laura and Jim Ross, the Dorothy Pacella Fund, in memory of Vincent Pacella and Shailaja and Umesh Nagarkatte.

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