TONIGHT ON METROFOCUS

The NYPD’S secret files unlocked! BuzzFeed gained unprecedented access to documents revealing disciplinary action, misconduct, and lack of transparency among New York’s finest. We have the full report as told by the BuzzFeed reporters behind the story. The statistics on anti-Semitism are sobering. Join us as we take a look at being Jewish in America in the age of President Trump.  Former ACLU President Nadine Strossen is back with more on your personal freedom and your right to free speech. We’re celebrating cinema uptown. The 13th annual Harlem International Film Festival hits screens this weekend. We’ve got your preview!

Aired on May 02, 2018.

TRANSCRIPT

> TONIGHT ON METROFOCUS, THE NYPD SECRET FILES UNLOCKED.

BUZZ FEED GETS UNPRECEDENTED ACCESS TO DOCUMENTS COVERING DISCIPLINARY ACTION, MISCONDUCT AND TRANSPARENCY AMONG THE FINEST.

A FULL REPORT IS MOMENTS AWAY.

ANTI-SEMITISM AND SOBERING STATISTICS.

AHEAD A LOOK AT BEING JEWISH IN AMERICA IN THE AGE OF TRUMP.

> PLUS FORMER ACLU PRESIDENT NADINE STROSSEN IS BACK WITH MORE ON YOUR RIGHT TO FREE SPEECH.

> AND CELEBRATING CINEMA UP TOWN.

THE 13th ANNUAL HARLEM INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL THIS WEEKEND.

WE HAVE THE PREVIEW.

> THOSE STORIES AND MORE AS METROFOCUS STARTS RIGHT NOW.

ANNOUNCER: THIS IS METROFOCUS, WITH RAFAEL PI RAMAN, JACK FORD AND JENNA FLANAGAN.

FUNDING FOR THIS PROGRAM WAS PROVIDED BY --

ANNOUNCER: CORPORATE FUNDING FOR METROFOCUS WAS PROVIDED BY MUTUAL OF AMERICA, YOUR RETIREMENT COMPANY.

AND BY PSE&G, SERVING CUSTOMERS, STRENGTHENING THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY AND INVESTING IN THE FUTURE.

> WELCOME TO METROFOCUS.

I'M JACK FORD.

A BOMBSHELL REPORT ON MISCONDUCT AT THE NYPD.

ACCORDING TO AN INVESTIGATION BY BUZZ FEED NEWS HUNDREDS OF SECRET INTERNAL POLICE FILES WERE UNEARTHED, SHOWING POLICE OFFICERS, QUOTE, LIED, CHEATED, STOLE, OR ASSAULTED NEW YORK CITY RESIDENTS.

BETWEEN 2011 AND 2015 COMMITTING OFFENSES SERIOUS ENOUGH TO MERIT FIRING.

THE FILES WERE PROVIDED TO BUZZ FEED BY AN ANONYMOUS SOURCE AND ACCORDING TO THE DOCUMENTS THE OFFENDING OFFICERS KEPT THEIR JOBS UNDER A PROGRAM CALLED DISMISSAL PROBATION.

BUZZ FEED RELEASED THE FILES IN WHAT THEY SAID WAS THE OVERWHELMING INTEREST OF THE PUBLIC.

JOINING ME TO TALK ABOUT THIS THE TWO REPORTERS BEHIND THE INVESTIGATION KENDALL TAG ART AND MIKE HAYS WELCOME.

THANK YOU.

KENLE I'LL ASK YOU THE FIRST QUESTION.

EXACTLY WHAT ARE THE DOCUMENTS?

SO IN NEW YORK FOR THE MOST PART THE PUBLIC HAS NO ACCESS TO INFORMATION ABOUT HOW POLICE OFFICERS ARE DISCIPLINED.

AND WHAT MIKE AND I GOT THROUGH AN ANONYMOUS SOURCE SHOWS WHAT OFFICERS ARE ACCUSED OF AND WHAT PENALTY THERE WAS.

YOU MENTIONED THERE ARE OTHER STATES DO YOU HAVE ACCESS.

YES.

NEW YORK IS ONE YOU DON'T.

EXACTLY.

MIKE WHAT OFFENSES ARE WE TALKING ABOUT?

I MENTIONED IN THE INTROOFFENSES THAT COULD WARRANT FIRING WHAT ARE WE TALKING ABOUT.

EVERYTHING FROM SHOWING UP LATE TO WORK, FILLING OUT A REPORT WRONG, TO AS YOU SAID IN THE INTRO, EXCESSIVE FORCE, LYING TO A GRAND JURY WHICH IS VERY SERIOUS, LYING ON OFFICIAL REPORTS THAT SORT OF THING.

LET'S TALK ABOUT THIS PROGRAM.

ALL RIGHT THIS DISMISSAL PROBATION PROGRAM.

WHAT DID YOU LEARN ABOUT THAT?

SO THIS IS THE PROGRAM WE NEVER HEARD OF BEFORE WE STARTED REPORTING.

IT'S KIND OF A WONGY TERM.

BUT IT MEANS AN OFFICER HAS BEEN FIRED EXCEPT THEY'RE NOT TAKEN OFF THE FORCE AND THEY'RE LEFT ON THE STREET TO DO THEIR JOB BUT THEY ARE UNDER A YEAR OR SO WARNING PROGRAM WHERE THE DEPARTMENT SAYS IT'S VERY SERIOUS.

THEY HAND IT OUT FOR THE MOST SERIOUS OFFENSES LIKE WHAT MIKE WAS TALKING ABOUT LYING.

BUT AT THE END OF THE DAY IT SEEMS TO NOT REALLY AFFECT AN OFFICERS'S JOB AND IF AN OFFICER IS ACHED OF BEATING ONE THEY ARE STALE OUT MAKING ARRESTS

ANY LOSS OF RANK OR PAY IN THE PROGRAM, ANYTHING YOU COULD SEE.

NOT NECESSARILY.

THE NYPD TOLD US THAT THEY TRY TO KEEP THE OFFICER IN THE SAME SORT OF ROLE IF THEY CAN POTENTIALLY, WHILE ON DISMISSAL PROBATION.

SO YOU KNOW PART OF THE POINT OF PROBATION IS TO REHABILITATE.

SO PUTTING AN OFFICER ON A DESK ISN'T NECESSARILY GOING TO DO THAT.

WHAT HAPPENED AT THE END OF THE PROBATIONARY TERM?

THEY GO BACK AND CONTINUE TO DO THE JOB THAT THEY'VE BEEN DOING THE PAST YEAR.

AND I IMAGINE THAT -- AND I HAVE SEEN SOME OF THIS IN THE REPORTING.

NYPD SAYS WE HAVE 50,000 EMPLOYEES HERE.

AND I THINK THE NUMBER THEY SAID WAS MAYBE 700 OR SO PEOPLE INVOLVED IN THIS PROGRAM OF WHICH YOU GOT ACCESS FROM ABOUT 400 OR SO.

AND MY SUSPICION IS THE NYPD WOULD SAY, IT'S A SMALL NUMBER.

WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE, IT'S A SMALL NUMBER.

AND YET I WOULD ASSUME THEY WOULD SAY THE DISCLOSURE OF THIS INFORMATION ON A SMALL NUMBER OF PEOPLE JUST HAS AN IMPACT ON THE CONFIDENCE THAT THE PUBLIC HAS IN THE NYPD.

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THAT?

I THINK THAT POLICE OFFICERS HAVE SUCH AN IMPORTANT JOB THAT THEY'RE NOT NECESSARILY LIKE AN EVERY DAY CITIZEN.

AND TO THE EXTENT THAT THEY ARE ARRESTING PEOPLE, AND BEING PUT ON THE STAND TO TESTIFY, IT'S THE KIND OF THING WHERE WE -- IF I WERE ARRESTED AND FACING CRIMINAL CHARGES WOULD REALLY WANT TO BE ABLE TO ABLE TO INTERROGATE THE OFFICER'S CREDIBILITY.

I HEAR THE ARGUMENT THIS IS DEFINITELY IN THE EVERY POLICE OFFICER.

LIKE YOU SAID THERE ARE 50,000 NYPD EMPLOYEES.

BUT FOR THE HANDFUL OR HUNDREDS REALLY THAT WE FOUND OUT ABOUT, I THINK THE PUBLIC HAS A RIGHT TO KNOW.

AND IT'S IMPORTANT ALSO FOR OFFICERS THEMSELVES.

-- WE HAVE HEARD FROM SOME THEY THINK THE DISCIPLINARY SYSTEM SUN FAIR.

I'M WONDERING IF YOU THINK FROM YOUR REPORTING THAT WE MIGHT SEE DOWN THE ROAD MORE OF THESE DOCUMENTS BEING DISCLOSED TO FOLLOW UP WITH WHAT THE PERSON THAT YOU TALKED TO SAID, WHICH IS LET'S GET IT OUT THERE SO WE CAN GET RID OF THE BAD ACTORS AND BE ABLE TO SHOW PEOPLE, LOOK, WE ARE ALL DOING A GOOD JOB HERE.

DO YOU GET THAT SENSE?

WELL, I THINK THAT THERE -- THE DEPARTMENT AND THE MAYOR HAVE SAID THAT THEY WANT MORE TRANSPARENCY.

THEY'RE VERY OPEN ABOUT THAT.

WE DON'T KNOW EXACTLY WHAT THEY MEAN BY THAT YET.

BUT A COUPLE DAYS AFTER OUR ORIGINAL INVESTIGATION CAME OUT, I WAS AT A PRESS CONFERENCE AND I ASKED COMMISSIONER O'NEILL, YOU KNOW, ARE YOU GOING TO BE RELEASING MORE DOCUMENTS NOW?

AND HE SAID THAT HE WAS LOOKING INTO IT.

AND SINCE THEN THE DEPARTMENT HAS COME OUT AND SAID THAT THEY'RE CONSIDERING RELEASING SOME DOCUMENTS WHICH WOULD BE ANONYMOUS, WOULDN'T HAVE THE OFFICER'S NAME IN THERE BUT WOULD HAVE SOME INFORMATION ABOUT WHAT THEY'RE CHARGING PEOPLE WITH AND WHAT SORT OF PENALTIES THEY ARE DOLLING OUT.

I THINK THERE IS A GOOD POSSIBILITY WE MIGHT SEE MORE, PARTICULARLY FROM THE NYPD IN THE FUTURE.

I WILL ADD TO THAT THOUGH THAT WE FACE REAL LEGAL THREATS FROM THE LARGEST POLICE YOU KNOW 199NEW YORK AROUND OUR REPORT PG.

THE POLICE UNION, PBA ASKED TO GET A COURT INJUNCTION.

TO KEEP YOU FROM PUBLISHING.

TO KEEP US FROM REPORTING.

TO THE STENT MORE INFORMATION IS GOING TO BE PUBLICLY RELEASED I DON'T THINK IT'S HAPPENING WITHOUT A FIGHT.

WELL I THINK IT'S INTERESTING.

THE SENSE IS THAT THE MOVEMENT IS TOWARDS MORE TRANSPARENCY AS YOU MENTIONED TALKING TO THE POLICE COMMISSIONER ANT HIGHER UPS.

THE QUESTION IS WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

WE'LL LOOK TO REPORTERS LIKE TO YOU HELP US ANSWER THAT QUESTION.

KENDALL, MIKE, THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

GOOD REPORTING WE APPRECIATE YOU SHARING YOUR THOUGHTS.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING US.

YOU TAKE CARE.

> HATE CRIMES ARE SKY ROCKETING IN THE NATION AND IN NEW YORK CITY.

A RECENT REPORT FROM THE ANTI-DEFAMATION LEAGUE NOTES THAT THE NUMBER OF ANTI-SEMITIC INCIDENTS IN NEW YORK ROSE BY OVER 90% IN 2017 COMPARED TO 2016.

90%. ACCORDING TO A NEW BOOK TITLED SEMITISM, BEING JEWISH IN THE AGE OF TRUMP, THE SITUATION COULD GET WORSE AND POTENTIALLY MORE DANGEROUS.

IN HIS BECOME, JONATHAN WEISSMAN, THE DEPUTY WASHINGTON EDITOR OF 'THE NEW YORK TIMES,' DESCRIBES HIS OWN ENCOUNTERS WITH WHITE NATIONALISTS AND LOOKS AT THE CONNECTION BETWEEN THEM AND THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION IS MAKING US FACE A RISING TIDE OF HATE.

AND WE ARE DELIGHTED TO HAVE SERGEANT JONATHAN WITH US.

THANKS FOR HAVING ME.

I WANT TO GET TO YOUR OWN EXPERIENCE THAT ARE A BIT OF A SPRINGBOARD FOR ALL OF THIS.

BUT I WANT TO ASK A FIRST QUESTION ABOUT THE TITLE.

I'M CURIOUS.

YOU CAN LOOK AT IT HERE.

SEMITISM, BEING JEWISH IN AMERICA IN THE AGE OF TRUMP.

AND SEMITISM HAS THREE PARENTHESES AROUND IT AND WHAT'S THE SIGNIFICANCE.

DURING THE 2016 CAMPAIGN I WAS ON TWITTER AS I OFTEN AM.

AND I SENT SOMETHING OUT ONTO AT WHICH TIMER AND GOT A APPLY BACK FROM SOMEBODY CALL THEM THEMSELVES CYBERTRUMP.

SAYING HELLO WISEMAN BUT MY NAME WAS IN THREE PARENTHESES.

I INTUITED I HAVE A JEWISH SOUNDING NAME.

I WONDER WHAT IT MEANS.

I REPLIED, CARE TO EXPLAIN.

'I KAEM BAKE WHAT HO THE ASHKENAZI INTELLIGENCE.

I HAVE BELLED THE CAT FOR MY FRO GOYIM.

WHAT IS IT IS, THOUGH THREE PARENTHESES WERE USED TO MARK JUICE ON SOCIAL MEDIA AND THEN THESE NEAT KIND OF SWARMS OF NEONAZIS THIS SPECIAL SOFTWARE CALLED THE COINCIDENCE INDICATOR AND THEY COULD DOWNLOAD IT AND SEARCH FOR THE TARGETS BELLED TO GO AFTER.

THOSE SIGNIFY WHO WAS TARGETED ONLINE.

IS IT TOO HYPERBOLLIC TO SAY A MODERN DAY ARP BAND.

THEY CALL IT THAT ACTUALLY.

THEY DO.

THEY SAY THIS IS OUR WAY OF SLAPPING THE YELLOW STAR ON THEIR CHEST.

THAT'S CERTAINLY WHAT THEY WOULD CALL IT.

LET ME TALK MORE ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCES THEN.

AS A JOURNALIST YOU ARE ACTUALLY FAR MORE PUBLIC CERTAINLY.

AS YOU SAID YOU ARE ENGAGED ON SOCIAL MEDIA.

ONE DID YOU FIND THEN THAT YOU WERE BEING SUBJECTED TO?

WELL, I MEAN, THE UGLINESS OF THE ANTI-SEMITISM AND THE HATE REALLY TOOK ME ABACK.

OBVIOUSLY WE KNOW THERE IS BIGOTRY IN THIS COUNTRY.

BUT HAVING YOUR FACE PHOTO SHOPPED ON A PICTURE OF SOMEBODY -- A CONCENTRATION CAMP VICTIM OR SOMEBODY KNEELING DOWN ABOUT TO BE SHOT IN THE BACK OF THE HEAD BY A NAZI, OR BEING IN A GAS CHAMBER WITH A DONALD TRUMP FIGURE IN NAZI REGALIA ABOUT TO TURN ON THE GAS.

IT WENT ON AND ON AND ON.

THERE WAS ONE GUY SENT ME AN IMAGE OF THE VERY FAMOUS GATES OF AUSCHWITZ BUT INSTEAD OF SAYING WORK MAKES YOU FREE IN GERMAN IT SAYS MAKAN AMERICA GREAT AGAIN.

AND THIS WEIRD MOTIF OF THE HOLOCAUST WSH PERSECUTION OF THE JEWS AND TRUMPISM KEPT RECURRING OVER AND OVER.

IT TOOK ME SO ABACK THAT I REALLY TRIED TO SEND IT OUT INTO THE WORLD AND SHOW WHAT WAS REALLY OUT THERE.

WOULD YOU CHARACTERIZE WHAT YOU WERE DOING AS IN A WAY FIGHTING BACK WSH O, PUSHING BACK OR JUST TRYING TO ILLUMINATE THIS.

YOU KNOW, I THINK I WOULD SAY I WAS PUSHING BACK.

MY MAIN GOAL WAS TO SHOW JUST THE LEVEL OF HATRED OUT THERE THAT I'VE BEEN STIRRED DURING THIS CAMPAIGN.

AND IN SOME WAYS ADMIT -- IN SOME WAYS I WAS PLAYING INTO THE NEONAZI TRAP HERE.

HOW?

YOU KNOW, LOOK, I HAVE A LOT MORE FOLLOWERS ON TWITTER OR FACEBOOK THAN THEY DO.

AND SO BY SEN GOING OUT I WAS SOMEWHAT AMPLIFYING THEIR MESSAGE.

I DID IT IN BURSTS BUT DIDN'T DO IT IN A SUSTAINED WAY.

IN FACT THE HEAD OF THE AND I DEFAMATION LEAGUE SAID I GET WHAT YOU'RE DOING MAYBE YOU SHOULD COOL IT DOWN FOR A ZBLIEL BECAUSE YOU WERE GIVING A VOICE TO FOLKS THAT DIDN'T HAVE NEARLY THE VOICE ESSENTIAL THAT YOU OR OTHERS DID.

I THINK THAT THAT WAS HIS THOUGHT.

YOU KNOW, IT WAS IMPORTANT TO RAISE AWARENESS.

BUT THAT AT SOME POINT YOU MAY BE GIVING THEM TOO MUCH OF A PLATFORM.

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THAT?

IT'S SOMETHING I WRESTLE WITH A LOT.

IN WRITING THIS BOOK I HAVE A CHAPTER ABOUT HOW TO CONFRONT THIS RISING WHITE NATIONALISM.

AND THERE CERTAINLY ARE VERY STRONG SMART VOICES WHO SAY, THE BEST WAY TO DO IT IS JUST IGNORE IT BECAUSE THESE PEOPLE WANT THE ATTENTION.

WITH YOU I REMEMBER TALKING TO A RABBAI IN WASHINGTON WHO SAID, YOU KNOW, YOU HAVE TO LOOK TO THE TORAH TO -- THE RELIGIOUS BOOKS.

AND IT SAYS WHEN THE JEW FINDS INJUSTICE, THE JEW MUST STAND UP TO INJUSTICE.

SO, YOU KNOW, IF YOU LOOK TO OUR TEACHINGS, YOU COME AWAY WITH THINKING WE DO HAVE FIGHT BACK AND SHOULDN'T PUT OUR HEADS IN THE SAND AND HOPE IT ALL GOES AWAY.

WHAT IS IT YOU WANTED TO DO WITH THE BOOK?

WHAT ARE YOU HOPING COMES FROM IT?

YOU KNOW I WANTED TO SEND OUT A WAKE UP CALL.

BECAUSE I JUST FEEL LIKE THERE HASN'T BEEN A LOUD ENOUGH RESPONSE TO THIS RISING BIGOTRY.

AND I THINK THAT JEWS AND MUSLIMS AND LATINOS AND IMMIGRANTS AND ALL OF THESE PEOPLE -- ALL THESE GROUPS THAT HAVE BEEN TARGETED IN THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS REALLY NEED TO SPEAK TOGETHER.

THIS ISN'T A QUESTION OF, YOU KNOW, DECIDING WHO HAS IT WORSE.

IT'S REALLY A QUESTION OF UNIFYING AROUND THIS NOTION OF DEMOCRAT PLURALISM, THAT WE'RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER AND THE UNITED STATES IS NOT A WHITE HOMELAND.

AND WE HAVE TO STAND UP FOR THAT.

AGAIN, IT'S CALLED SEMITISM, BEING JEWISH IN AMERICA IN THE AGE OF TRUMP.

JONATHAN, IT'S A MARVELLOUS AND COMPELLING AND VERY PROVOCATIVE WORK HERE.

WE APPRECIATE YOU SPENDING TIME WITH US.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME.

YOU BE WELL.

> I CONTINUE MY CONVERSATION STARTED LAST NIGHT WITH FORMER ACLU PRESIDENT NADINE STROSSEN.

SO TAKE US INTO YOUR BOOK.

WHY NOW?

WHY NOW IS PRECISELY THE REASON THAT YOU MENTIONED JENNA.

HARDLY A DAY GOES BY WITHOUT THERE BEING CHARGES AND COUNTERCHARGES OF PEOPLE ENGAGING IN HATE SPEECH.

AND REALLY IGNORANT OR SHOULD I SAY UNINFORMED STATEMENTS SUCH AS HATE SPEECH IS NOT FREE SPEECH.

WE ARE HEARD MANY POLITICAL LEADERS MAKE THAT STATEMENT OR EQUALLY UNTRUE.

HATE SPEECH IS ABSOLUTELY PROTECTED.

IN FACT, OUR LAW IS VERY NUANCED AND COMMON SENSICLE.

GOVERNMENT CAN'T PUNISH THE SPEECH JUST BECAUSE THE MESSAGE IS HATED BY THOSE WIELDING POWER.

THAT'S ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL.

THE PEOPLE IN THE DMZ NEED TO MAKE DECISIONS ABOUT WHAT TO READ, LISTEN TO, REFUTE.

BUT IF HATE SPEECH OR ANY MESSAGE FOR THAT MATTER IS CONVEYED IN A CERTAIN CONTEXT WHERE IT DIRECTLY CAUSES IMMINENT, SERIOUS HARM SUCH AS A TRUE THREAT, SUCH AS TARGETED HARASSMENT, SUCH AS INTENTIONAL INCITEMENT OF IMMINENT VIOLENCE, THEN IT CAN AND SHOULD BE PUNISHED CONSISTENT WITH LONGSTANDING FREE SPEECH PRINCIPLES.

I THINK THAT'S SENSIBLE.

AND THE OTHER ASPECK OF OUR STP, THE SPRURT HAS SAID IF YOU JUST DISAGREE WITH THE IDEA OR EVEN LOATHE THE IDEA THEN THE CORRECT RESPONSE IS NOT TO SILENCE IT BUT TO ANSWER IT.

SO THAT'S THE IDEA OF COUNTERSPEECH.

AND WHEN YOU THINK OF THE STRIDES WE HAVE MADE IN THIS COUNTRY -- WE HAVE A LONG WAY TO GO -- BUT THE ENORMOUS PROGRESS WE MADE TOWARD FURTHERING THAT NATIONAL IDEAL OF LIBERTY AND JUSTICE FOR ALL, IT'S BEEN DONE THROUGH VERY ROBUST SPEECH.

WELL I WAS GOING TO SAY BECAUSE THAT SEEMS TO BE ONE OF THE ISSUES WHERE PEOPLE HAVE THE MOST CRUX IS WHEN THAT SPEECH IS INTENDED TO INCITE OR ENCOURAGE PEOPLE.

UP MUM.

I DIDN'T A SEGMENT SPEAKING WITH THE ADL.

AND THEY WERE SAYING UNFORTUNATELY SOMETIMES YOU'LL SEE IN COMMUNITIES WHERE SOMETHING WILL JUST START WITH HATE SPEECH AND MOVES TO GRAFFITI AND THEN FROM GRAFFITI TO ACTUAL PHYSICAL ASSAULTS.

AND THERE IS A PATTERN OF THEM BUILDING.

WELL LET'S MAKE NO MISTAKE ABOUT IT.

GRAFFITI IS USUALLY VANDALISM, ACTUAL ASSAULTS CLEARLY CRIMINAL.

AND WITH MANY THANKS TO THE A DCHT L, WHICH HAS OPPOSED CENSORING HATE SPEECH, BUT IT WAS -- TOOK THE LEAD A COUPLE DECADES AGO TO HAVE ENACTED AT EVERY STATE LEVEL AND AT THE NATIONAL LEVEL OF GOVERNMENT SO-CALLED HATE CRIMES LAWS, THAT IS A LEGALLY RECOGNIZED CONCEPT.

IF YOU ENGAGE IN CONDUCT ALREADY A CRIME, SUCH AS VANDALISM, THE GRAFFITI OR AN ASSAULT, THEN THAT CAN AND SHOULD BE CONSIDERED A MORE SERIOUS CRIME, A SO-CALLED HATE CRIME OR BIAS CRIME, THAT CAN INCUR AN ADDITIONAL PUNISHMENT BECAUSE OF THE VIEW THAT IT -- WHEN THE VICTIM IS SINGLED OUT FOR A DISCRIMINATORY REASON.

RACE, RELIGION, GENDER AND SO FORTH.

BECAUSE THEN THAT CRIME CAUSES MORE HARM NOT ONLY TO THE INDIVIDUAL VICTIM BUT TO SOCIETY AS A WHOLE.

SO WE RECENTLY HAD ANOTHER TWITTER FIGHT OVER I HATE TO SAY IT BUT THE CELEBRITY KANYE WEST.

UM-HUM.

AND HIS THOUGHTS ON THE PRESIDENT.

PEOPLE WENT BACK AND FORTH, ET CETERA.

THERE WAS A LOT OF CRITICISM OF WHAT HE WAS DOING BY SAYING, YOU KNOW, YOU'RE CONTRIBUTING TO A TOXIC ENVIRONMENT IN THE WAY PEOPLE INTERACT WITH EACH OTHER, EVEN THOUGH, YES THAT'S NOT HOW HE SAW IT.

BUT THAT'S WHAT A LOT OF PEOPLE WERE CRITICIZING THAT.

BY SUPPORTING THIS MAN YOU SHOW SUPPORT FOR WHAT HAS BECOME AN INCREDIBLY TOXIC DIALOGUE.

AND THAT'S A LEGITIMATE CRITICISM AND I DEFEND AND CHAMPION'S PEOPLE'S RIGHT TO TRY TO DISCOURAGE HIM FROM EXPRESSING THOSE VIEWS.

I'M NOT TAKING AN OPINION ONE WAY OR THE OTHER ON THE MERITS.

BUT THEY ARE APPROPRIATELY EXERCISING THEIR FREE SPEECH RIGHTS TO CRITICIZE HIM.

SO I THINK WE HAVE TO HAVE MUCH MORE CONFIDENCE, JENNA, IN THE ABILITY OF ALL OF US THROUGH WHATEVER MEDIA OR SOCIAL MEDIA WE USE TO -- TO BE INDEPENDENT THINKERS.

WE DON'T NECESSARILY ACCEPT AN IDEA THAT'S OUT THERE.

FAR FROM IT.

WE HAVE THIS ROBUST -- THIS IS WHY I SAY I THINK DEMOCRACY IS WORKING.

VERY MUCH THE WAY THE FRAMERS INTENDED IT.

IN THE FOUNDING ERA THEY HAD THE EQUIVALENT OF TWITTER.

A LOT OF PAMPHLETS FLYING BACK AND FORTH WITH A LOT OF REALLY STRONG, HAMP CRITICAL LANGUAGE.

VERY CRITICAL OF GOVERNMENT FORBEARS.

AND THAT'S DEMOCRACY IN ACTION.

GWEN, THAT'S ONE OF THE DEMOCRATIZING ASPECTS OF SOCIAL MEDIA.

IS IT ALLOWS ANYBODY LITERATE AND TECHNOLOGICALLY SAVVY HAVING A VOICE.

LOOK AT THE HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS.

YES.

THEY HAVE SUCH POWER, NOT ONLY TO REALIZE THEIR OWN INDIVIDUAL CHOICES AND STRENGTHS BUT ALSO TO EFFECT THEIR GOVERNMENT.

THEY CAN'T VOTE YET THEY HAVE AN INFLUENCE.

SO I AM PRETTY MUCH OF AN OPTIMIST ABOUT FREE SPEECH BEING THE MOST EFFECTIVE METHOD FOR ADVANCING WHATEVER GOAL YOU HAVE, CERTAINLY INCLUDING RACIAL EQUALITY.

GENDER EQUALITY AND HUMAN RIGHTS IN GENERAL.

I THINK THAT MIGHT BE ONE OF THE MOST POSITIVE TAKE AWAYS OF THIS BOOK, WHY WE SHOULD RESIST HATE -- EXCUSE ME WHY WE SHOULD RESIST IS WITH FREE SPEECH AND NOT CENSORSHIP THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR EFFECTIVE EXERCISE OF YOUR FREE SPEECH.

THANK YOU.

> FOR MORE INFORMATION ON NADINE STROSSEN'S NEW BOOK, HATE, WHICH WE SHOULD RESIST WITH FREE SPEECH NOT CENSORSHIP, VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT METROFOCUS.ORG.

> CELEBRATING THE ART OF CINEMA IN THE HOME OF THE HARLEM RENAISSANCE, THE GOAL OF THE HARLEM INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL IS TO HONOR EXCEPTIONAL FILM BY ANYONE FROM ANYWHERE ABOUT ANYTHING UNTHE SUN.

BUT IN ADDITION TO SHOWCASEDING SOME OF THE BEST TIMES AND TIME MAKERS AROUND THE WORLD, THE FESTIVAL FOCUSINGS ON HARLEM RESIDENTS OR FILMS SHOT IN HARLEM OR ABOUT HARLEM ON THE LEGEND ARROWARY HISTORY.

JOINING US TO TALK ABOUT THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE 13th ANNULAR LEMM INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL WITH THE FESTIVAL'S DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS B. LORENZO ROACHE AND IT'S PROGRAM DIRECTOR.

THANK YOU IT FOR JOINING US TODAY.

IT'S AN HONOR.

THANKS FOR HAVING US.

LORENZO, LET ME START WITH YOU, THIS FILM FESTIVAL WAS BORN IN 2005.

HOW DID IT HAPPEN AND WHY DID IT HAPPEN?

WELL, IT HAPPENED BECAUSE WE SAW THAT -- WELL FIFRLT WE HAVE A BUNCH OF FRIENDS IN FILM SCHOOL, INCLUDING THE THREE WERE IN FILM SCHOOL.

AND THE FILMS THEY WERE MAKING WEREN'T BEING SEEN.

YOU WOULDN'T SEE THEM IN HOLLYWOOD OR GOING TO A THEATER.

WE THOUGHT, THESE FILMS NEED TO BE SHOWN.

AND HOW CAN WE GET THEM OUT THERE?

AND THAT'S KIND OF THE CATALYST OF IT.

AND GOT TOGETHER AND STARTED WORKING AND WE WERE LIKE, OKAY, THIS IS A LOT OF WORK BUT I THINK THAT THIS IS SOMETHING THAT HARLEM WOULD DESERVE.

AND A LOT OF PEOPLE THINK THAT IT'S JUST A HARLEM-BASED FILM FESTIVAL.

AND THEY LEAVE OUT THE INTERNATIONAL.

THAT'S -- THAT WAS GOING TO BE MY QUESTION.

I'LL BRING THAT TO YOU.

I HAVE TO SAY THAT I WAS ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE BEFORE I STARTED READING UP ON IT.

I HEARD HARLEM INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL.

I DIDN'T HEAR THE INTERNATIONAL.

I HEARD HARLEM, RIGHT?

RIGHT.

BUT THIS DOES -- AS I SAID IN THE INTRODUCTION, YOU SHOWCASE HARLEM FILMS.

BUT IT'S AN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL.

IT'S MORE INTERNATIONAL THAN MANY FILM FESTIVALS AROUND THE COUNTRY.

WHY THAT GLOBAL VISION AND MISSION?

WELL, WE FELT DEFINITELY FROM THE BEGINNING LIKE LORENZO SAID THE SECOND PART OF FOUNDING THE FESTIVAL WAS ACTUALLY -- WE SAID IS THERE A FESTIVAL -- A HARLEM FILM FESTIVAL.

AND WE MEANT AN INTERNATIONAL ONE BECAUSE WE HAD BEEN TO SUN DANCE AND ALL THE GREAT INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVALS.

WE FELT THERE WAS SOMETHING WE COULD ADD WITH HARLEM IN THE INTERNATIONAL NAME THAT WOULD MAKE IT DESERVING OF AN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL.

YOU TALKED ABOUT FILMS THAT YOU WERE HOPING THAT THIS WOULD BE A VENUE FOR NIM FILMS YOU CONSEE JUST WALKING INTO A THEATER.

BUT -- BUT IT'S -- IT'S MORE THAN JUST FEATURE FILMS AND FEATURE LENGTH DOCUMENTARIES.

GIVE US THE GAMUT OF THE.

WE HAVE EVERYTHING.

YEAH, WE HAVE VIRTUAL REALITY, EXPERIMENTAL, MUSIC VIDEOS.

ANIMATION.

ANIMATION.

YOU KNOW, FROM WHAT I READ THERE WAS SOMETHING LIKE 1,200 FILMS SUBMITTED TO THE FESTIVAL.

YES.

BUT 75 WERE SELECTED.

YES.

TALK ABOUT MANY ARE CALLED THE FEARED CHOSEN.

YES.

WHO SELECTS AND HOW ARE THEY SELECTED.

WE HAVE AN EXTENSIVE PROCESS.

WE HAVE A REVIEW COMMITTEE.

AND THEY WATCH -- THERE IS ALSO PEOPLE WATCHING EVERYTHING FIRST.

AND THEN THERE IS THE COMMITTEE THAT WATCHES THE SELECTS.

AND THE SAD THING ABOUT IT IS -- IT IS SAD BECAUSE WE HAVE SO MANY FILMS THAT WE TURN AWAY, NOT BECAUSE THEY'RE NOT GREAT FILMS.

WE COULD HAVE TWO OR THREE FESTIVALS A YEAR IF WE HAD.

DEFINITELY.

BECAUSE OF THE MATERIAL.

IT'S EXCITING BECAUSE IT MEANS.

THERE IS A LOT OF GOOD STUFF THAT YOU CAN'T SEE.

THIS INDEPENDENT FILM FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD IS ALIVE AND KICKING.

THE SAD THING IS WE CAN'T SHOW EVERYTHING.

BY THE WAY, LORENZO YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT THE HISTORY OF THE FESTIVAL.

HOW HAS IT CHANGED FUNDAMENTALLY?

OBVIOUSLY THERE ARE SOME FILMS THAT DIDN'T EXIST 13 YEARS AGO.

BUT WHAT IS A FUNDAMENTAL CHANGE OF FESTIVAL OVER THE YEARS?

I WOULD SAY THAT ON THE INCEPTION OF THE FESTIVAL THE KIND OF THINGS THAT WE GOT WERE STUFF THAT YOU REALLY WOULDN'T SHOW.

IT WAS REALLY BAD.

IT WAS BAD.

IT'S GOTTEN BETTER THAT'S GOOD.

THAT WAS IN 2005.

ALL OF YOU SUBMITTING STUFF 13 YEARS AGO FORGIVE LORENZO.

NOTHING PERSONAL.

I THINK HE MEANS THERE WAS MORE HOME VIDEO KIND OF STUFF.

PEOPLE JUST KIND OF.

NOW YOU GET.

THERE ARE SO MANY THAT ARE SO GREAT.

YOUR CLOSING FILM IS THE ONE THAT CAPTURED MY ATTENTION.

TALK ABOUT THAT ONE.

YES THE WORLD PREMIERE OF MANDELA'S GUN.

IS A FASCINATING BUY OPIC PLAYED BY AN ACTOR PLACING NELSON MANDELA FOR THE FIRST TIME.

FROM TAMISHI MASHA.

ABOUT THE PERIOD BEFORE MANDELA WAS KRPED WHERE HE WAS UNDERGOING SMIRLT TRAINING AND GOING IN THAT VAIN.

THAT'S FASCINATING.

THAT'S PART OF HIS HISTORY PEOPLE DON'T KNOW ABOUT.

WITH THE PASSING OF WINNIE MANDELA A COUPLE WEEKS AGO IT'S TIMELY TO REVISIT.

WE HAVE 30 SECONDS LEFT.

WHAT IS THE CONTRIBUTION OF THE FESTIVAL TO THE LARGER HARLEM COMMUNITY?

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