TONIGHT ON METROFOCUS

A recent report by the New York state comptroller revealed that the railroad’s on-time service is the worst it’s been in almost two decades. But, the MTA is still looking to raise fares. Now, elected officials vow to put the brakes on that plan until on-time performance and customer satisfaction improves. A new study by North Shore Child & Family Guidance Center in Roslyn Heights, Long Island, has found that it’s increasingly difficult to find mental and addiction healthcare specialists who accept commercial insurance. But there’s hope. Find out about a new project designed to help those in need. On this Jewish High Holiday of Yom Kippur we go in search of spirituality in the digital age. Is it impossible for millennials to put down their phones, disconnect and actually be fulfilled? We’ll find out. The beloved actress and Hollywood icon considers herself “the luckiest old broad on two feet.” Now, PBS pays tribute to the “First Lady of Television.”

Aired on September 19, 2018.

TRANSCRIPT

TONIGHT ON 'METROFOCUS', THE GOP TAKES ON THE LIRR.

ACCORDING TO A RECENT NEW YORK STATE CONTROLLER REPORT, ON TIME SERVICE ON THE LONG ISLAND RAILROAD IS THE WORST IT'S BEEN IN ALMOST TWO DECADES.

NEVER THE LESS, THE MTA IS STILL PLANNING TO RAISE FARES AND NOW SOME REPUBLICAN ELECTED OFFICIALS VOW TO PULL THE BRAKES ON THE FARE HIKES UNTIL PERFORMANCE AND CUSTOMER SATISFACTION IMPROVE.

WE WILL HAVE THE LATEST.

> PLUS ON LONG ISLAND IT'S YOUR MONEY ON YOUR MENTAL HEALTH.

WE WILL EXPLAIN.

> IT'S YOM KIPPUR AND ON THIS HIGH HOLY DAY WE DISCOVER HOW THE WISDOM OF THE TORAH AND THE JEWISH SAGES CAN ENRICH OUR LIVES EVEN IN THE DIGITAL AGE.

> AND BETTY WHITE, THE BELOVED ACTRESS AND HOLLYWOOD ICON CONSIDERS HERSELF, QUOTE, THE LUCKIEST OLD BROAD ON TWO FEET, UNQUOTE.

NOW PBS PAYS TRIBUTE TO THE FIRST LADY OF TELEVISION.

THOSE STORIES AND MORE AS 'METROFOCUS' STARTS RIGHT NOW.

♪♪

Announcer: THIS IS 'METROFOCUS' WITH RAFAEL PI ROMAN, JACK FORD AND JENNA FLANAGAN.

'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY JAMES AND MERRILL TISCH, BERNARD AND IRENE SCHWARTZ, ROSLYN P.

WALTER, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG AND BY --

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.

> GOOD EVENING, WELCOME TO 'METROFOCUS.'

THANKS FOR JOINING US, I'M JACK FORD.

FOR COMMUTERS USING THE LONG ISLAND RAILROAD THEIR COMMUTE WHICH OFTEN COMES WITH DELAYS WILL SOON ALSO COME WITH A LARGER PRICE TAG.

IN AN ANNOUNCEMENT LAST MONTH, THE LIRR CONFIRMED ITS PLAN TO GO FORWARD WITH A 4% FARE INCREASE EARLY NEXT YEAR.

BUT COMMUTERS AND LAWMAKERS AREN'T ALL ON BOARD WITH THE TAIR HIKE, ONE OF THOSE ISLANDERS WHO IS MOST VOCAL IS STATE SENATOR ELAINE PHILLIPS WHO IN A LETTER ASKED THE RAILROAD TO, QUOTE, STEP UP ITS GAME BEFORE STEPPING UP ITS PRICES AND SHE JOINS US NOW TO TALK ABOUT THIS.

SENATOR, WELCOME TO YOU.

NICE TO HAVE YOU HERE WITH US.

LET ME START OFF THIS CONVERSATION, IF I CAN, WITH AN AUDIT THAT WAS DONE BY THE COMPTROLLER, AND CLEARLY THERE WERE SOME SIGNIFICANT FINDINGS IN THAT AUDIT.

GIVE US A SENSE OF ONE OF THE ONES -- SOME OF THE ONES THAT YOU THOUGHT WERE MOST SIGNIFICANT.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME HERE TODAY.

THIS IS AN EXTREMELY IMPORTANT ISSUE.

SO THE COMPTROLLER DID AN AUDIT.

HE FOUND THAT 21,000 TRAINS LAST YEAR WERE LATE.

YOU KNOW, WHEN YOU LOOK AT PRODUCTIVITY OF THAT, IT COSTS BUSINESSES $75 MILLION IN PRODUCTIVITY, BUT BEYOND THAT, THINK OF ALL THE PARENTS THAT WERE LATE FOR GAMES OR THE NANNIES THAT COULDN'T GET BACK TO THEIR HOMES BECAUSE THEY HAD TO STAY.

SO THIS REALLY IMPACTS PEOPLE IN SO MANY DIFFERENT WAYS.

I WILL TELL YOU OF THOSE 21,000, HALF OF THEM WERE A TRAIN LINE THAT IS IN MY SENATE DISTRICT, THE PORT WASHINGTON TRAIN LINE.

SO HALF OF THE TRAINS OVER A COURSE OF A YEAR WERE LATE.

THAT'S ALMOST AN INCOMPREHENSIBLE NUMBER WHEN YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT 21,000.

WHAT SORT OF FACTORS WERE GIVEN TO EXPLAIN -- NOT EXCUSE, BUT TO EXPLAIN THESE EXTRAORDINARY DELAYS?

YOU KNOW, THERE'S ALL KINDS OF FACTORS.

SO OBVIOUSLY WEATHER-RELATED ISSUES, A LOT OF IT HAS TO DO WITH THE SWITCHES AND THE TRACKS THEMSELVES.

LOOK, THERE ARE ALWAYS GOING TO BE SITUATIONS WHERE THERE'S EMERGENCIES, A PASSENGER GETS SICK, AND WE UNDERSTAND THAT.

COMMUTERS UNDERSTAND THAT.

BUT THAT'S NOT THE TYPE OF ON TIME PERFORMANCE THAT WE AREN'T GETTING NOW.

YOU KNOW, FOR YEARS I WAS A COMMUTER AND I RELIED AS A MOTHER, A WORKING MOTHER OF THREE YOUNG CHILDREN, I RELIED ON THE RELIABILITY OF THE LONG ISLAND RAILROAD AND I HAVE TO SAY WHEN I WAS COMMUTING, I HAD GOOD ON TIME PERFORMANCE, BUT IN THE LAST COUPLE YEARS THAT HAS GONE DOWNHILL SIGNIFICANTLY.

WHY DO YOU THINK THAT IS?

BECAUSE I'VE HEARD THAT BEFORE, PEOPLE SAYING THAT IT HAD A HISTORY OF RELIABILITY, BUT ALL OF A SUDDEN THE BOTTOM HAS FALLEN OUT FROM IT.

WHY DO YOU THINK THAT IS?

I THINK IT'S THE REINVESTMENT IN THE INFRASTRUCTURE.

YOU KNOW, WE'RE TRYING TO DO A LOT OF PROJECTS RIGHT NOW, WE HAVE EAST SIDE ACCESS, WE HAD THE SECOND TRACK THAT WAS BEING DONE, WE HAVE THE THIRD TRACK THAT'S GOING THROUGH MY SENATE DISTRICT, WE HAVE POSITIVE TRAIN CONTROL.

SO THERE IS A LOT OF VARIABLES THAT ARE PULLING AT THOSE PURSE STRINGS OF THE LONG ISLAND RAILROAD.

AND, LOOK, I AM A FIRM BELIEVER THAT LONG ISLAND IS ABSOLUTELY DEPENDENT ON A 21st CENTURY INFRASTRUCTURE AND WE HAVE TO MAKE INVESTMENTS.

YOU KNOW, ADDITIONAL INVESTMENTS IN OUR INFRASTRUCTURE, BUT FIRST AND FOREMOST WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE WHAT WE HAVE RIGHT NOW IS OPERATING EFFICIENTLY.

SO WHAT, THEN, WOULD YOU SAY TO THE RAILROAD FOLKS WHO SAY, ALL RIGHT, WE ACKNOWLEDGE THESE PROBLEMS, BUT ONE OF THE REASONS WE NEED THIS FARE INCREASE IS TO IMPROVE THE QUALITY, IMPROVE THE INFRASTRUCTURE.

WHAT'S THE ANSWER TO THAT?

RIGHT.

I THINK THE ANSWER TO THAT IS, LOOK, THAT'S NOT THE WAY PRIVATE BUSINESS OPERATES.

YOU DON'T GET TO RAISE YOUR PRICE OF A CAR WASH IF YOU HAVE POOR SERVICE, RIGHT?

YOU DON'T GET TO DO THAT.

PEOPLE LEAVE AND GO FIND ANOTHER CAR WASH.

WELL, IN THIS CASE WE CAN'T GO AND FIND ANOTHER MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION OR THE OTHER MEANS OF TRANSPORTATION AND WE'VE SEEN THAT HAPPENING ON THE LONG ISLAND RAILROAD IS TO GET IN YOUR CAR AND DRIVE, AND THAT'S NOT WHAT WE WANT TO DO.

AS YOU KNOW AS A LEGISLATOR QUITE OFTEN MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC WILL POINT FINGERS AT THE LEGISLATORS AND SAY, ALL RIGHT, YOU INTO HE HAD TO FIX THIS.

IS THIS SOMETHING THAT THE LEGISLATION -- THAT LEGISLATION OR THE LEGISLATURE CAN ACTUALLY DO TO STEP IN AND HAVE AN IMPACT ON THIS?

SO LET ME TELL YOU WHAT I'VE DONE.

WHAT I'VE DONE IS WRITTEN A LETTER TO ALL THE 22 BOARD MEMBERS OF THE MTA AND MR. LODA HIMSELF AND I HAVE ASKED THEM TO SERIOUSLY RECONSIDER RAISING FARES UNTIL THE SERVICE IS AT THE LEVEL WHERE IT SHOULD BE.

I AM ALSO WORKING ON LEGISLATION RIGHT NOW TO HELP THEM ACHIEVE YOU WILL SEE A RELEASE IN THE NEXT TWO WEEKS FROM US, I'M GOING TO NEED ASSEMBLY SUPPORT, AND I BELIEVE I HAVE THE GOVERNOR'S SUPPORT.

THE GOVERNOR IN HIS DEBATE THE OTHER DAY, A QUESTION WAS ASKED ABOUT DELAYING THE FARE INCREASE UNTIL THE ON TIME PERFORMANCE WAS BETTER AND HE SAID HE THOUGHT -- HE THOUGHT THAT WAS A GOOD IDEA.

SO I HOPE HE STAYS WITH THAT AND SUPPORTS THIS LEGISLATION THAT I WILL BE COMING OUT WITH.

WELL, STATE SENATOR ELAINE PHELPS, I WANT TO THANK YOU AGAIN FOR JOINING US.

THIS IS AN ISSUE, AS YOU SAID, THAT IS SO IMPORTANT, SO SIGNIFICANT TO SO MANY PEOPLE WHO ARE COMMUTERS.

AND OUR HOPE IS WE WILL GET YOU BACK AND TALK A LITTLE BIT MORE AS THIS MOVES DOWN THE LINE, SO TO SPEAK.

GREAT.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

THANK YOU AGAIN.

PLEASURE.

TALK TO YOU SOON.

YOU BE WELL.

OKAY.

♪♪

> A NEW FRONT ON THE BATTLE AGAINST MENTAL HEALTH DISORDERS AND DRUG ADDICTIONS EMERGES.

PARODY FEDERAL AND STATE LAW MANDATES THAT FOR MENTAL HEALTH ADDICTION AND PHYSICAL HEALTH COVERAGE BUT HEALTH INSURERS MIGHT NOT BE FOLLOWING THE LAW.

RIGHT HERE IN NEW YORK A LOCAL NONPROFIT MENTAL HEALTH CARE AGENCY, NORTH SHORE CHILD AND FAMILY GUIDANCE CENTER, CONDUCTED A STUDY ON THE ISSUE.

THEIR FINDINGS THAT MENTAL HEALTH AND ADDICTION CARE IS GETTING DIFFICULT TO ACCESS.

THEY CLAIM THAT COMMERCIAL INSURERS ARE SHORT CHANGING THE INDUSTRY AND YOU, THE ONE WHO PAYS FOR THEIR SERVICES.

JOINING US TODAY IS THE CEO OF NORTH SHORE CHILD AND FAMILY GUIDANCE CENTER, WHERE THE STUDY WAS CONDUCTED, ANDREW MALEKOFF AND SOCIAL WORKER CARRIE ELLER.

I'D LIKE TO WELCOME YOU BOTH TO THE PROGRAM.

FIRST I JUST WANT TO GET AN UNDERSTANDING AS TO HOW THIS STUDY EVEN CAME INTO EXISTENCE.

WELL, JUST TO PROVIDE A LITTLE CONTEXT, IN 2008 THE MENTAL HEALTH PARODY AND ADDICTION EQUITY ACT PASSED, IT WAS A BIPARTISAN BILL SPONSORED BY TWO SENATORS, ARCH CONSERVATIVE PETE DEMENECHI AND ARCH LIBERAL PAUL WELLSTONE BOTH OF WHOM HAD EXPERIENCED THE IMPACT OF MENTAL ILLNESS IN THEIR FAMILIES.

SO THIS LAW THAT WAS PASSED IN 2008 MADE IT VERY CLEAR AND PROHIBITED TREATING THE CARE OF PEOPLE WITH MENTAL ILLNESS OR ADDICTIONS DIFFERENTLY THAN PEOPLE WITH PHYSICAL HEALTH PROBLEMS.

AND WHAT THAT MEANS IS THAT THERE WOULD BE A PROHIBITION AGAINST LIMITING THE NUMBER OF VISITS THAT SOMEONE WITH A MENTAL HEALTH ISSUE MIGHT HAVE, PROHIBIT DIFFERENTIALS IN TERMS OF COPAYS OR IN TERMS OF DEDUCTIBLES, AND IN ADDITION TO THAT, IT MANDATED THAT INSURANCE CARRIERS WOULD HAVE AN ADEQUATE NUMBER OF PROVIDERS IN THEIR NETWORK FOR PEOPLE SO THAT THEY COULD EASILY ACCESS AFFORDABLE CARE WITHIN THEIR GEOGRAPHIC AREA.

THAT'S AN INCREDIBLY WHAT WAS IT THAT TIPPED YOU OFF THAT SOMETHING WAS AMISS?

SO ANDY ALLUDED TO THE IDEA THAT YOU CALL YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY, YOU ASK THEM WHO TAKES MY PLAN, WHO IS COVERED BY MY INSURANCE.

THEY WILL GIVE YOU A LIST OF NAMES AND YOU CALL THE PROVIDERS AND SOMETIMES THEY ARE NO LONGER IN THE NETWORK OR THEY ARE ONE OF THE FEW PROVIDERS THAT DOES STAY ON THE NETWORK AND SO THEY HAVE LONG WAITS FOR CLIENTS TO BE ABLE TO ACCESS THE CARE.

AT NORTH SHORE CHILD AND FAMILY GUIDANCE CENTER WE TURN NO ONE AWAY FOR INABILITY TO PAY, SO WE DO HAVE OPEN ACCESS, BUT WHAT WE KNOW IS THAT PEOPLE WITH THESE KIND OF ISSUES, MENTAL ILLNESS AND SUBSTANCE USE DISORDERS, ARE ALSO DEALING WITH STIGMA, WHICH MEANS THAT THEY HAVE A VERY DIFFICULT TIME PICKING UP THE PHONE, ASKING FOR HELP, WAITING DAYS, WEEKS, MONTHS AND SOMETIMES YEARS AND SO WHEN THEY FINALLY PICK UP THE PHONE AND THE PERSON AT THE OTHER END SAYS I NO LONGER ACCEPT YOUR INSURANCE, THAT'S SO DEMORALIZING AND SO DIFFICULT THAT SOMETIMES PEOPLE RETREAT.

THAT'S AN INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT POINT AND I ACTUALLY WANT TO BUILD ON THAT FOR MY QUESTION FOR CARRIE BECAUSE AS A SOCIAL WORKER I'M SURE YOU'RE SEEING A LOT OF THE EFFECT FIRSTHAND.

I WORK IN THE COMMUNITY ALL OF NASSAU COUNTY, I SERVICE, YOU KNOW, MANY POPULATIONS THAT HAVE STRUGGLED TO ACCESS MENTAL HEALTH CARE UNTIL THEY FINALLY FOUND THEIR WAY TO NORTH SHORE CHILD AND FAMILY GUIDANCE CENTER, AND I ALSO HAVE A UNIQUE PERSPECTIVE BECAUSE I'M ALSO THE SISTER OF A TEEN WHO STRUGGLES WITH MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES AS WELL AS CHEMICAL DEPENDENCY.

AND I CAN ATTEST THAT THE STIGMA ASSOCIATED TO THAT MAKES IT INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT FOR PEOPLE TO REACH OUT FOR HELP.

SO WHEN THEY FINALLY DO YOU HAVE SUCH A SHORT WINDOW TO ENGAGE THESE CLIENTS SO THEY FEEL COMFORTABLE AND READY TO ACCESS THEIR TREATMENT, BUT UNFORTUNATELY THAT'S NOT THE CASE WHEN THEY'RE HAVING GREAT DIFFICULTY GETTING CONNECTED TO PROVIDERS WITHIN THEIR NETWORK.

SO, ANDY, WE'VE BEEN TALKING A LOT ABOUT PEOPLE WHO HAVE HEALTH INSURANCE, BUT I'M WONDERING IF YOU'RE UNINSURED HOW DOES THAT CHANGE THE DYNAMIC OF PEOPLE'S ACCESS TO MENTAL HEALTH CARE?

IF SOMEONE HAS MEDICAID OR IF THEY APPLY FOR SOMETHING LIKE, FOR EXAMPLE, CHILD HEALTH PLUS, WHICH MANY DO, THOSE WOULD BE INSURANCES THAT WOULD ALLOW THEM TO ACCESS CARE.

THE PROBLEM IS BECAUSE OF SIGNIFICANT CHANGES IN THE LAST TEN YEARS IN NEW YORK STATE WITH THE WAY THEY FINANCE OUTPATIENT MENTAL HEALTH AGENCIES, THAT MANY OF THOSE AGENCIES HAVE TURNED AWAY COMMERCIAL HEALTH INSURERS AND WILL ACCEPT ONLY MEDICAID, NOT UNINSURED.

IN NEW YORK STATE MOST OF THE FOCUS FROM THE GOVERNMENT IS ON MEDICAID.

YOU KNOW, I WILL TELL YOU A VERY BRIEF STORY.

MANY YEARS AGO I WAS IN THE OCEAN, I LIVE IN LONG BEACH, AND I SAW THREE GIRLS DRIFTING OUT TOWARDS THE JETTY.

I SWAM OUT AND I PUT MY ARMS AROUND THEM.

IN A VERY SHORT PERIOD OF TIME THE LIFEGUARDS CAME AND HELPED.

CAN YOU IMAGINE IF I SWAM OUT TO THESE THREE LITTLE GIRLS, MAYBE SIX, SEVEN, EIGHT YEARS OLD, I WAS SO CLOSE I COULD SEE THEIR FRECKLES AND IF INSTEAD OF PUTTING MY ARMS AROUND THEM I TREADED WATER JUST A FEW FEET AWAY AND SAID, HEY, GIRLS, DO YOU HAVE MEDICAID?

THAT'S THE SITUATION THAT WE FACE RIGHT NOW IN NEW YORK STATE.

SO IT'S THE MIDDLE CLASS AND THE WORKING POOR THAT SUFFER MOST FROM THE IMPACT OF NOT BEING ABLE TO ACCESS CARE THROUGH THEIR COMMERCIAL INSURANCE.

WELL, LISTEN, I WANT TO THANK YOU BOTH FOR JOINING US ON THE PROGRAM AND OF COURSE FOR CONDUCTING THIS STUDY THAT EVEN ALERTED US TO THE PROBLEM TO BEGIN WITH.

OKAY.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU.

♪♪

> FOR MANY JEWISH NEW YORKERS THE HIGH HOLY DAYS OF ROSH HASHANAH AND YOM KIPPUR ARE A TIME FOR PRAYER, REFLECTION AND FAMILY.

BUT HOW CAN THE WISDOM OF THE TORAH AND THE JEWISH SAGES GUIDE THE LIVES OF THOSE WHO ARE TODAY A MESH IN A FRIEND ZEED AND DISCONNECTED SOCIETY THAT'S WARPING ALL THE CORE VALUES.

THAT'S THE QUESTION THAT RABBI MARK WILDES ATTEMPTS TO ANSWER IN HIS NEW BOOK 'BEYOND THE INSTANT: JEWISH WISDOM FOR LASTING HAPPINESS IN A FAST-PACED SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD.'

HE JOINS US NOW.

RABBI, WELCOME BACK TO THE PROGRAM.

THANK YOU FOR HAVING.

SO, RABBI, AS YOU POINT OUT IN YOUR BOOK, IN THIS COUNTRY AND BASICALLY IN ALL DEVELOPED COUNTRIES AROUND THE WORLD WE HAVE MORE COMFORT, MORE FREEDOM, MORE OF EVERYTHING THAT MONEY CAN BUY, JUST ABOUT, YET WE ARE MORE DEPRESSED AND MORE ANXIOUS THAN EVER BEFORE.

HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN THAT?

IT'S A GREAT QUESTION AND IT'S THE REASON I WROTE THE BOOK.

MONEY AND AFFLUENCE, FINANCIAL SECURITY, ARE ALL IMPORTANT THINGS, BUT ALL THE STUDIES SHOW THAT THEY ARE NOT FACTORS.

THEY ARE NOT DETERMINING FACTORS IN HAPPINESS.

PROVIDED YOU HAVE YOUR BASICS, FOOD, SHELTER, CLOTHING, THOSE TYPES OF THINGS ARE NOT GOING TO PROVIDE HAPPINESS BEYOND THE INSTANT.

WHAT WILL PROVIDE HAPPINESS BEYOND THE INSTANT ARE VALUES.

A VALUE-DRIVEN LIFE THAT HAS PURPOSE AND MEANING.

ALL THE STUDIES DEMONSTRATE AND THIS IS WHAT JUDAISM HAS BEEN TEACHING FOR CENTURIES, IS THAT IF YOU LIVE A LIFE BASED ON CERTAIN VALUES AND YOU FOCUS ON THOSE VALUES, ONE OF WHICH I START THE BOOK OFF BY TALKING ABOUT GIVING AND PROSPEROUS MORE DEVELOPED SOCIETIES WE TEND TO FOCUS MORE ON OURSELVES, MORE ON OUR OWN PROFESSIONAL ADVANCEMENT AND YET GIVING AND DOING FOR OTHERS ACTUALLY PRODUCES MORE LONG LASTING CONTENTMENT AND HAPPINESS.

AND THAT'S WHY YOU'RE NOT GOING TO NECESSARILY SEE HAPPINESS FLOURISHING MORE IN A MORE DEVELOPED PROSPEROUS COUNTRY.

YOU TALK ABOUT THE VALUES AND THE VALUES THAT COME FROM TRADITIONAL RELIGIOUS BELIEFS, BUT YOU ALSO WRITE ABOUT HOW WE BECOME SKEPTICAL OF RELIGIOUS BELIEFS IN OUR AGE.

YOU KNOW, IN AN AGE WHERE RELIGION IS USED AS AN EXCUSE FOR TERRORISM OR AS A COVER FOR SEXUAL PREDATION JUST TO CITE TWO VERY AWFUL EXAMPLES THAT WE ARE FAMILIAR WITH, DOESN'T IT MAKE SENSE TO BE SKEPTICAL OF RELIGION?

YOU KNOW, WE'RE THROWING OUT THE BABY WITH THE BATH WATER.

THERE ARE A LOT OF REASONS TO HATE RELIGION TODAY.

YOU JUST MENTIONED TWO OF THEM.

THERE'S MORE BLOOD SHED IN THE NAME OF ALLAH, GOD, HOWEVER YOU WANT TO REFER TO THE ALL MIGHTY, AND THE OTHER EXAMPLE YOU JUST GAVE.

THEY ARE TRUE.

I CAN'T DENY THAT.

BUT I ALSO CAN'T DENY THAT RELIGION HAS PROMOTED VALUES FOR CENTURIES THAT HAVE KEPT PEOPLE NOT ONLY HAPPY, BUT PRODUCTIVE.

THERE ARE ACTUALLY UNFORTUNATELY HAS BEEN MORE BLOOD SHED IN THE 20th CENTURY NOT DUE TO RELIGION, DUE TO OTHER FORCES, BUT IF YOU STRIP DOWN WHAT RELIGION IS SUPPOSED TO GIVE, IT'S SUPPOSED TO GIVE ETERNAL VALUES AND YOU RAISED A VERY IMPORTANT POINT WHICH IS HOW DO YOU DO THAT IF EVERYONE IS SKEPTICAL?

WE DON'T BELIEVE IN OBJECTIVE MORALITY ANYMORE.

WHAT I'M TRYING TO ARGUE IN THE BOOK IS THAT WE NEED TO GO BACK AND WE NEED TO ASCERTAIN THAT THERE ARE CERTAIN TRUTHS.

THERE ARE CERTAIN RIGHT AND WRONGS.

WHEN WE CAN EMBRACE THOSE AND WE CAN LIVE OUR LIVES ACCORDINGLY, WE WILL BE HAPPIER.

ONE OF THE STUDIES THAT I DEMONSTRATE IN THE BOOK WAS ROSETTA, PENNSYLVANIA.

THE MOST STUDIED TOWN IN THE UNITED STATES.

IN THE 1950s THEY HAD LESS THAN HALF THE RATE OF HEART DISEASE OF THE REST OF THE NATION.

THERE WAS NO SUICIDE, THERE WAS NO ALCOHOLISM, THERE WAS NO DRUG ADDICTION.

NOBODY WAS ON WELFARE, VERY LITTLE CRIME.

IT WAS A VERY BORING PLACE TO LIVE.

AND THEY DISCOVERED SOMETHING VERY, VERY SIMPLE.

ROSETTA, PENNSYLVANIA, WAS SETTLED BY ITALIAN IMMIGRANTS FROM SOUTHERN ITALY, A PLACE CALLED ROSETTA, AND THEY BROUGHT WITH THEM A TREMENDOUS SENSE OF VALUES AND COMMUNITY.

THEY WOULD STOP TO EACH OTHER AND TALK TO EACH OTHER ON THE STREET IN ITALIAN, EVERYBODY ATTENDED THE MASS EVERY SUNDAY THERE, THEY ALL WENT TO CHURCH.

THEY COUNTED 22 CIVIC ORGANIZATIONS IN A POPULATION LESS THAN 2,000, WHICH MEANS EVERYBODY WAS VOLUNTEERING.

EVERYBODY WAS PRAYING AND EVERYBODY WAS LOOKING OUT FOR EACH OTHER.

AND THEY WERE HAPPIER.

SO WHAT DO YOU SAY -- I'M SURE YOU HEARD IT, PEOPLE TELL YOU, YOU KNOW, RABBI, I WANT TO BELIEVE WHAT YOU SAY.

I WANT TO BELIEVE, FIRST OF ALL, I WANT TO GIVE OF MYSELF MORE THAN I EVER HAVE, I WANT TO CONNECT MYSELF TO SOMETHING GREATER THAN MYSELF, BUT I JUST CAN'T DO IT.

I CAN'T CHANGE.

SO I HAVE A CHAPTER DEVOTED TO THAT.

THE POWER OF CHANGE.

IF JUDAISM STANDS FOR ANYTHING AND THE HIGH HOLIDAYS ARE UPON US NOW, ALL ABOUT CHANGE.

WHY GO AND PRAY IF YOU CAN'T CHANGE?

WHY GO FOR THERAPY?

I LIKE TO QUOTE MY FAVORITE JEWISH PHILOSOPHY, HE WAS GRAPPLING WITH THE PREDETERMINISTS, THE EXTREME ASTROLOGISTS HOBBLED EVERYTHING WAS IN THE STARS AND YOU COULDN'T SHAPE YOUR OWN FATE, YOUR OWN DESTINY, AND WE BELIEVE YOU CAN.

YOU CAN CHANGE.

JUST TAKE BABY STEPS.

DON'T TRY TO DO EVERYTHING OVERNIGHT.

AND WE HAVE A VERY IMPORTANT PRINCIPLE IN JUDAISM THAT AFTER ONE'S BEHAVIOR FOLLOWS THE HEART.

YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE FEELING EVERYTHING, JUST PERFORM AN ACT OF KINDNESS.

DO THE RIGHT THING.

THE MORE RIGHT THINGS A PERSON DOES, THE MORE WE DEVELOP, THE MORE WE'RE SHAPED.

YOU KNOW, IT'S JUST A QUESTION OF TAKING ONE LITTLE STEP.

WELL, RABBI, THE BOOK IS 'BEYOND THE INSTANT: JEWISH WISDOM FOR LASTING HAPPINESS IN A FAST-PACED SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD.'

AS I TOLD YOU IN A PRIVATE CONVERSATION, THE BOOK ALREADY AFFECTED ME PROFOUNDLY.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

IT'S REALLY AN HONOR.

PLEASURE.

THANK YOU.

♪♪

> AT 96 YEARS OF AGE TV LEGEND BETTY WHITE SHOWS LITTLE SIGN OF SLOWING DOWN.

THIS YEAR WHITE CELEBRATES AN AMAZING 80 YEARS IN SHOW BUSINESS OFFICIALLY THE LONGEST CAREER IN THE HISTORY OF TELEVISION.

KNOWN FOR HER ROLES IN 'THE MARY TYLER MOORE SHOW,' 'THE GOLDEN GIRLS' AND MORE RECENTLY 'HOT IN CLEVELAND,' WHITE WAS ALSO A TRUE INDUSTRY PIONEER.

SHE WAS THE FIRST WOMAN TO PRODUCE A NATIONAL TV SHOW, THE FIRST WOMAN TO STAR IN A SITCOM AND THE FIRST WOMAN TO RECEIVE AN EMMY NOMINATION.

AND NOW EIGHT DECADES INTO HER STORIED CAREER, BETTY WHITE HAS COME TO PBS.

BETTY WHITE, FIRST LADY OF TELEVISION, A DOCUMENTARY TEN YEARS IN THE MAKING CHRONICLES WHITE'S IMPRESSIVE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE SMALL SCREEN.

HERE IS A PREVIEW.

IT'S HUMILIATING.

I TOLD YOU I'VE GOT A LUNCH DATE.

YOU CAN GO TO LUNCH ANYTIME.

HOW OFTEN DO YOU GET A CHANCE TO WEAR A WEDDING GOWN?

SHE CAN DELIVER A LINE LIKE NOBODY, AND THEY CREATED THAT CHARACTER AND SHE DID THAT WHOLE DIMPLES THING.

SHE ALSO HAD A LITTLE PROBLEM THAT SHE LIKED MEN, ANY MEN, ANYBODY'S MEN, SHE JUST LIKED MEN.

AND THAT WAS -- THAT WAS SORT OF WHAT MADE THE CHARACTER KIND OF FUN.

AND JOINING US NOW IS THE DIRECTOR OF THE DOCUMENTARY, STEVE THETCHER.

STEVE, WELCOME.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

GREAT TO BE HERE.

STEVE, THIS IS A WONDERFUL DOCUMENTARY THAT YOU MADE.

WHAT GOT IT STARTED AND WHY DID IT TAKE YOU TEN YEARS TO COMPLETE?

FIRST OF ALL, IT TOOK US LIKE TEN YEARS TO CATCH UP TO BETTY'S CAREER TO BE HONESTLY.

CONSTANTLY FOOT ON THE GAS, NO BRAKE, AND, YOU KNOW, WE DID AN INTERVIEW WITH HER ABOUT 12 YEARS AGO AND KIND OF SLOWLY STARTED DEVELOPING THIS PROJECT OVER THE COURSE OF LIKE TEN YEARS AND WHAT A CAREER SHE'S HAD.

WE COULD HAVE DONE FOUR HOURS ON HER LIFE, QUITE HONESTLY.

12 YEARS AGO YOU MET HER, SO YOU KNEW HER WHATEVER YOU STARTED THE PROJECT.

WHAT SURPRISED YOU ABOUT HER DURING THIS LONG PERIOD THAT YOU SPENT SO MUCH TIME WITH HER?

GREAT QUESTION.

WHAT I THINK I LEARNED ABOUT BETTY IS WHAT YOU SEE IS WHAT YOU GET.

ETERNAL OPTIMIST AND EVERY CREW MEMBER OR ANYBODY SHE MEETS ALONG THE WAY, SHE WILL FIND OUT WHAT YOUR PET IS, WHAT THE NAME OF YOUR PET S SHE'S JUST SO GENUINE AND SO SINCERE AND I THINK THAT'S REALLY WHAT THE FILM KIND OF REFLECTS, TOO, TO SOME DEGREE THAT SHE IS WHAT SHE -- AND THE REASON SHE'S LASTED FOR EIGHT DECADES AND STILL WORKS IN THIS BUSINESS, THERE IS A REASON FOR IT AND THAT'S BECAUSE SHE'S JUST GENUINE.

OKAY.

SO YOU KNOW, WE ALL KNOW ABOUT ALL THE GREAT SHOWS THAT SHE WAS IN, BUT ONE OF THE MANY THINGS THAT I LEARNED THAT I DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT BETTY WHITE, I HAD MENTIONED IN THE INTRODUCTION, SHE WAS THE FIRST WOMAN PRODUCER ON TV.

NOW, THAT SEEMS LIKE A VERY BIG DEAL.

HOW COME MOST OF US AND I THINK THAT'S FAIR TO SAY THAT MOST OF US DON'T KNOW THAT.

YEAH, IT'S KIND OF INTERESTING.

I THINK HER CAREER GOES BACK TO 1939, IT WAS EXPERIMENTAL TELEVISION IN LOS ANGELES, THIS HE SET UP A BUNCH OF CAMERAS, THE ENGINEERS NEEDED TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO MAKE IT WORK SO THEY NEEDED SOMEONE IN FRONT TO KIND OF JUST SHOOT WHILE THEY WERE WORKING OUT THE ENGINEERING OF IT AND BETTY CAME OVER FROM HIGH SCHOOL, IN HER HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION DRESS AND SANG AND DANCED IN FRONT OF THE CAMERAS.

FROM THAT MOMENT I BELIEVE THE ENGINEERS REALIZED THIS MEDIUM HAS TO WORK BECAUSE BETTY IS SO GOOD.

SO TV WAS INVENTED BECAUSE OF BETTY.

I THINK, YOU KNOW, JUST EARLY ON SHE JUST SAID WE DID WHATEVER JOBS NEEDED TO BE DONE AND FIRST WOMAN PRODUCER, YOU KNOW, STARTED HER OWN SITCOM, SHE STARTED WITH FIVE AND A HALF HOURS OF TELEVISION ON THE WEST COAST AND JUST, YOU KNOW, THE FIRST OF EVERYTHING.

RIGHT.

SHE WAS BEFORE LUCILLE BALL AS A PRODUCER OF A TV SHOW AND IS THE PRODUCER OF HER TV SHOW WHICH WAS SYNDICATED NATURALLY.

SHE MADE A CONTRIBUTION TO THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT.

TALK ABOUT THAT.

YEAH, BACK IN 1950s SHE HAD HER OWN SHOW ON THE AIR, IT WAS ON NBC AND SHE HAD A YOUNG DANCER ON THE SHOW THAT SHE LOVED, ARTHUR DUNCAN.

HE WAS AN AMAZING DANCER, AMAZING GIFTED MAN AND SINGER AND DANCER AND THE SOUTH DID NOT LIKE HIM.

SOME OF THE SOUTHERN STATIONS DIDN'T LIKE HIM BECAUSE HE WAS AFRICAN-AMERICAN.

BETTY STOOD UP FOR HIM AND KEPT HIM ON THE SHOW, NO QUESTIONS ASKED, AND THE INTERESTING THING IS HE KNEW NOTHING ABOUT THIS OF ALL THE SCUTTLEBUTT, HE JUST WOULD SHOW UP EVERY WEEK AND DO HIS PART ON HIS SHOW.

BETTY HANDLED IT OFF CAMERA AND IN THE BACKGROUND AND NEVER MADE A BIG DEAL OUT OF IT AT THE TIME AND I THINK THAT SAYS SOMETHING ABOUT BETTY THAT SHE WASN'T LOOKING FOR THE ATTENTION OR THE MEDIA TO BACK HER, SHE JUST TOOK ON THE TASK AND DID THE RIGHT THING.

LET'S TALK ABOUT THE LOVE OF HER LIFE, ALLEN LUDDEN.

TALK ABOUT THE RELATIONSHIP.

HOW DID IT GET STARTED AND HOW IMPORTANT WAS IT IN HER LIFE?

ALLEN WAS THE HOST OF 'PASSWORD.'

BETTY LIVED IN LOS ANGELES, 'PASSWORD' WAS DONE IN NEW YORK.

HER AGENT SAID SHE STARTED MAKING A LOT OF TRIPS IN AND OUT OF NEW YORK TO BE ON 'PASSWORD' AND I THINK THEY LITERALLY FELL IN LOVE IN FRONT OF THE CAMERAS ON 'PASSWORD.'

I THINK THE AUDIENCE KNEW IT EVEN BEFORE ALLEN AND BETTY DID.

YOU CAN SEE IT ON YOUR DOCUMENTARY, I THINK.

YOU CAN SEE THE LOVE AND THE CONNECTION THAT THEY HAVE AND JUST THE PLAYFULNESS THEY HAVE TOGETHER ON SET DURING THE SHOW.

BETTY HAS A REALLY AMAZING STORY, A CUTE STORY ABOUT HOW SHE KIND OF REJECTED HIM AND HE KEPT WEARING THE ENGAGEMENT NECKLACE AND A RING AROUND HIS NECK EVERY TIME SHE WENT OUT WITH HIM AND SHE SAID NO FOR A YEAR AND FINALLY SHE SAID EVERYWHERE WE GO I SEE THIS NECKLACE AND THIS RING, ENGAGEMENT, AROUND HIS NECK AND FINALLY BETTY HAD TO SAY YES.

FINALLY, WHAT WAS HER REACTION TO THIS DOCUMENTARY AFTER SHE SAW IT?

WE SHOWED IT AT HER 96th BIRTHDAY WITH LIKE 400 OF HER CLOSEST FRIENDS, IT WAS KIND OF A SURPRISE, SHE DIDN'T KNOW IT WAS COMING.

WE HAD A SCREENING FOR THE FILM.

SHE LOVED THE FILM, THE ONLY THING SHE SAID TO ME WAS, STEVE, IS IT TOO MUCH BETTY WHITE?

SHE LOVED IT, I THINK.

SHE REALLY DOES.

THAT'S GREAT.

I THINK SHE'S AN ENSEMBLE PLAYER SO IT'S ALWAYS ABOUT THE CAST AND EVERYBODY ELSE AROUND HER.

SHE DOESN'T REALIZE SHE IS A LEADING LADY.

STEVE, THANK YOU SO MUCH AND THANKS SO MUCH FOR THE WONDERFUL DOCUMENTARY.

I APPRECIATE IT.

THANKS FOR THE TIME.

BETTY WHITE, FIRST LADY OF TELEVISION IS AIRING NOW ON PBS.

CHECK YOUR LOCAL LISTINGS FOR MULTIPLE VIEWING OPPORTUNITIES.

Announcer: 'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY JAMES AND MERRILL TISCH, SUE AND EDGAR WALKEN HIEM III, BERNARD AND IRENE SCHWARTZ, ROSLYN P.

WALTER, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG AND BY --

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