MetroFocus: August 1, 2022

Encore: November 22, 2022

EXPLORING HATE SPECIAL REPORT

As the country continues to grapple with a rise in right-wing extremism, many are left to wonder, “Why are so many young people seduced by so much hatred?”  Joanna Schroeder is a writer, editor, media critic, and a mother of three – who focuses on gender and parenting issues.  In her New York Times op-ed piece, “Racists Are Recruiting.  Watch Your White Sons.”, she lays out how a combination of cultural changes, social media and the awkwardness of adolescence have created a fertile ground for extremists to feed off of.  Tonight, Ms. Schroeder joins us to the discuss ways to protect young people from being indoctrinated into violent white supremacist groups – before it’s too late.

A recent report by the Anti-Defamation League Center on Extremism and the Community Security Initiative titled, “Hate in the Empire State: Extremism & Antisemitism in New York” details a disturbing snapshot of increasing extremism across New York, bolstered in part by widespread campaigns of disinformation and conspiracy theories.  Scott Richman, the New York/New Jersey Regional Director of the ADL, joins us to break down this report and share what we can do to reverse these trends.

TRANSCRIPT

> TONIGHT, EXPLORING HATE.

HOW EXTREMIST GROUPS ARE USING THE INTERNET TO TRY TO BRAINWASH OUR KIDS.

'METROFOCUS' STARTS RIGHT NOW.

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

> 'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY -- SUE AND EDGAR WACHENHEIM III, SYLVIA A. AND SIMON B. POYTA PROGRAMING ENDOWMENT TO FIGHT ANTI-SEMITISM, THE PETER G. PETERSON AND JOAN GANZ COONEY FUND, BERNARD AND DENISE SCHWARTZ, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG, THE AMBROSE MONELL FOUNDATION.

AND BY --

> GOOD EVENING, AND WELCOME TO 'METROFOCUS.'

I'M JENNA FLANAGAN.

AS THE COUNTRY CONTINUES TO GRAPPLE WITH A RISE IN RIGHT-WING EXTREMISM, MANY ARE LEFT TO WONDER, WHY ARE SO MANY YOUNG MEN BECOMING SEDUCED BY SO MUCH HATRED?

AS PART OF OUR EXPLORING HATE INITIATIVE, EXAMINING THE ROOTS AND RISE OF ANTI-SEMITISM, RACISM, AND OTHER EXTREMISM IN AMERICA, OUR NEXT GUEST HAS A THEORY SHE'S BEEN SOUNDING THE ALARM ON FOR THE PAST SEVERAL YEARS.

JOANNA SCHRODER IS A MEDIA CRITIC LOOKING THROUGH THE LENS OF PARENTING AND GENDER.

IN 2017 SHE WROTE A 'NEW YORK TIMES' OP-ED ENTITLED 'RACISTS ARE RECRUITING, WATCH YOUR WHITE SONS'. IN IT SHE LAYS OUT HOW A COMBINATION OF CULTURAL CHANGES, SOCIAL MEDIA, AND THE AWKWARDNESS OF ADOLESCENCE CREATED A FERTILE GROUND FOR EXTREMISM TO SEED.

THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HAVING ME.

FIRST I WANT TO GET INTO THE SUBJECT, BECAUSE ACE MENTIONED IN THE INTRO, A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE INGREDIENTS FOR EXTREMISM, THE ROLE OF SOCIAL MEDIA AND ALGORITHMS A LOT OF THESE PLATFORMS PLAY.

BUT HOW DID YOU COME TO UNDERSTAND THIS?

IT CAME TO ME VERY PERSONALLY, BECAUSE IT CAME THROUGH MY OWN KIDS' INSTAGRAM PAGES WHEN THEY WERE YOUNG.

AND WHAT ENDED UP HAPPENING IS THEY -- I ALWAYS MONITORED THEIR 'FOR YOU' PAGED AND WHATEVER THEY WERE LOOKING AT.

IN FACT, I EVEN HAD A -- I EVEN HAD A MIRROR FOR MY YOUNGER KIDS ON MY PHONE WHERE I COULD SEE WHAT THEY WERE DOING.

I ORIGINALLY STARTED MONITORING THEM TO PREVENT THINGS LIKE BULLYING AND ANY KIND OF PREDATORY BEHAVIOR.

BUT WHAT I SAW THAT CONCERNED ME THE MOST WAS THAT THEIR 'FOR YOU' PAGES AND EXPLORE PAGES WERE JUST FULL OF VERY SUBTLE BUT VERY TROUBLING HATE FILLED CONTENT.

SUDDENLY ANTI-SEMITIC, SUBTLY RACIST, ANTI-WOMAN, ANTI-TRANS, ANTI-QUEER, EVERYTHING, AND IT WAS MIXED WITH MEMES THAT ARE -- I REALIZED THIS IS A SERIOUS PROBLEM.

OF COURSE, AND SO I THINK A LOT OF PARENTS OF, PERHAPS, TEENS AND TWEENS MIGHT HAVE COME OF AGE BEFORE SOCIAL MEDIA, AND SO A LOT OF THE TRADITIONAL WARNING SIGNS THAT THEY MIGHT BE LOOKING FOR, THEY DON'T MAN TEST IN THE SAME WAY.

CAN YOU EXPAND ON THAT?

I'M GENERATION 'X,' AND WHEN I WAS YOUNG, YOU COULD TELL SKINHEADS FROM EVERYBODY ELSE.

THEY STOOD OUT.

OR PEOPLE WOULD WEAR STAWASTIKA OR OTHER SYMBOLS.

NOW THESE HIT-FILLED GROUPS LOOK LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE AND THEY'RE RECRUITING PEOPLE WHO LOOK LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE.

THAT ALLOWS THEM TO BE MORE FESK AND APPEALING THEM GENERATION DON'T START OUT WANTING TO BE DANGEROUS RACISTS OR ANTI-SEMITIC.

THEY DON'T START OUT WANTING TO BE HOLOCAUST DENIERS.

THEY ARE LURED AND ROMANCED INTO IT, AND IF THEY WERE APPROACH BID SOMEONE EXTREME LOOKING THEY'D PROBABLY BE LESS LIKELY TO BE LURED IN.

I WAS WONDERING IF YOU COULD GET A LITTLE MORE INTO THE EXPLORE PAGES, DISCOVERY PAGES, 'FOR YOU' PAGES, BECAUSE AGAIN, I THINK PERHAPS -- I'M NOT A PARENT MYSELF, BUT PERHAPS A LOT OF PARENTS -- YOU KNOW, MY KIDS ARE FRIENDS WITH THEIR FRIENDS ON SOCIAL MEDIA, AND THEIR FRIENDS ARE FINE, SO IT SHOULD BE FINE, BUT HOW DOES THE ALGORITHM -- HOW COULD IT SUCK YOU INTO SOMETHING THAT'S MORE VIOLENT AND MORE DANGEROUS?

YEAH, THAT'S THE TRICKY THING.

WE THINK WHENBY WE SET UP A PRIVATE ACCOUNT FOR OUR KIDS AND CHECK WHO THEY'RE FOLLOWING, KIDS FROM SCHOOL, THEIR AUNTS AND UNCLES, THEY'RE SAFE.

THE REALITY IS, THEIR EXPLORE PAGES OR FOR YOU PAGES, BASICALLY WHAT WE WOULD CALL THEIR TIME LINE, IS FILLED WITH STUFF THAT'S NOT JUST FROM THEIR FRIENDS.

IT'S FROM EVERYWHERE OUTSIDE OF THE INTERNET, OUTSIDE THEIR PRIVATE PAGE.

SO WHAT HAPPENS IS -- AND I FIGURED THIS OUT KIND OF BECAUSE I WAS DOING MEDIA BUYING OR AD BUYING FOR THE COMPANY I WORK FOR AND I LEARNED HOW PEOPLE TARGET ADS AND POSTS TO DIFFERENT DEMOGRAPHICS.

AND I REALIZED THAT THESE KIDS THAT ARE ON PRIVATE ACCOUNTS ARE SEEING THINGS THAT ARE TARGETED TOWARD KIDS THAT WATCH MINECRAFT VIDEOS.

AND MINECRAFT IS A WONDERFUL GAME.

IT'S TOTALLY INNOCUOUS, IT'S SAFE FOR KIDS GENERALLY, AND SO PARENTS HAVE NO IDEA THAT THERE'S THESE BAD GUYS OUT THERE THAT ARE USING THEIR KIDS' INTEREST IN VIDEO GAMES TO SHOW UP IN THEIR TIME LINES ON A PRIVATE ACCOUNT, WHERE THEY'RE NOT EVEN FOLLOWING HETHESE PEOP.

AND OF COURSE WITH THE WAY THAT A LOT OF THE ALGORITHMS WORK, BECAUSE THEY WANT TO YOU STAY ON, IF YOU ENGAGE WITH SOMETHING, EVEN IF IT'S INNOCENTLY, YOU SEE MORE OF IT, IS THAT CORRECT?

ABSOLUTELY.

THE WAY I FOUND THIS WITH MY OWN SON, THEY SCROLL REALLY FAST THROUGH THEIR TIME LINES.

IT IS LIKE SCROLL, CLICK, SCROLL CLICK, AND THEY LIKE EVERYTHING THAT THEY SEE, ESPECIALLY THE YOUNGER KIDS.

AND I SAW HIM HAVE THIS IMAGE COME UP, THIS HISTORICAL PICTURE OF HITLER.

HE HEARTED IT, HE MOVED ON.

I SAID, WAIT.

WHEN I LOOKED AT IT, THERE WAS A SUBTLE MESSAGE THAT WAS PROFOUNDLY PRO-HITLER AND HOLOCAUST DENYING, AND THIS CHILD HAD NO KIDEA.

HE HAD NO IDEA.

THAT WAS WHEN THE LIGHTBULB WENT INTO MY HEAD, PARENTS ARE TOTALLY UNPREPARED FOR KID BEING EXPOSED TO THIS, ESPECIALLY KIDS WHO HAVE NO INTEREST IN HISTORY, IN POLITICS.

THEY'RE JUST PLAYING VIDEO GAMES.

THIS KID'S SUDDEN INTEREST IN DEEP PRIDE MEMES, IRREVERENT GOOFY CONTENT AND VIDEO GAMES, SOMEONE KNEW TO SEND THESE KIDS THIS CONTENT.

AND IT KEEPS THEM ENGAGED, SHOWS THEM MORE.

BUT THEY'RE CLEVER AND THEY MIX IT WITH STUFF THAT'S NOT OVERTLY ANTI-SEMITIC AND HOLOCAUST DENYING.

YOUTUBE CAN BE EVEN WORSE, BECAUSE THEY AUTOPLAY VIDEO AFTER VIDEO AFTER VIDEO, AND OUR KIDS SIT DOWN, AND THEY WATCH AN AWESOME YOUTUBE BLOGGER PLAYING VIDEO GAMES THAT MAYBE AS A PARENT YOU'VE SCREENED AND FEEL TOTALLY COMFORTABLE WITH, AND THEY'RE ENJOYING THAT.

AND ANOTHER ONE PLAYS BY THAT PERSON.

THE THIRD VIDEO THAT MIGHT PLAY MAYBE WHEN YOU WALK OUT OF THE ROOM OR START LISTENING TO YOUR OWN PODCAST MIGHT BE SOMEBODY WHO WANTS TO TEACH YOUR KIDS THAT HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH VIDEO GAMES THAT INDOCTRINATE THEM WITH VALUES THAT DON'T JIVE WITH YOUR FAMILY.

FOR ME, I REALIZE THAT JORDAN PETERSON WAS A PROBLEMATIC -- HE'S A PSYCHOLOGIST IN CANADA, BUT HIS THEORIES ARE VERY ANTI-FEMINIST, ANTI-TRANS, VERY SUBTLY PROBLEMATIC IN MANY WAYS WHEN YOU'RE JUST BEGINNING WITH THEM.

HE WAS AUTOPLAYING, AND I KNEW ABOUT HIM BECAUSE OF MY WORK, AND IT WAS LIKE A CARTOON.

I RAN IN THE ROOM AND LIKE SCREECHED TO A STOP, AND I WAS LIKE -- WHAT IS THIS?

AND HOW DID IT GET HERE?

AND I DON'T KNOW THAT PARENTS REALIZE THEY'RE STARTING SO INNOCENT AND THEY'RE GETTING EXPOSED TO THAT STUFF THAT WAY, SLOWLY.

SPEAKING OF STARTING SO INNOCENT, I ALSO MENTION, AS FROM YOUR ARTICLE, THE AWKWARDNESS OF ADOLESCENCE.

IT'S UNIVERSALLY UNDERSTOOD THAT THAT PERIOD IN YOUR LIFE, PUBERTY IS UNPLEASANT TO PUT IT MILDLY.

WHAT MAKES THAT A UNIQUE TIME FOR BOYS TURNING TO MEN?

IF YOU RAISED A BOY OR GIRL, YOU KNOW IT'S HARD.

THEIR BRAINS CANNOT UNDERSTAND THE GENDER POLITICS AT WORK.

THE WAY THEY PROCESS THAT IS I DON'T HAVE A PLACE IN THE FUTURE.

THE FUTURE IS FEMALE AND I'M MALE AND I DON'T KNOW WHERE I BELONG.

AS A CONSEQUENCE OF THAT.

ON TOP OF THAT, WHAT THEY SEE HAPPENING IN THEIR OWN SCHOOLS IS THERE'S A LOT OF RAH, RAH, GO GIRLS, WHICH IS A GREAT THING.

AND THE FUTURE IS FEMALE IS A GREAT MESSAGE.

BUT UNLESS THEY'RE IN SPORTS OR OTHERWISE VERY MAINSTREAMED, THEY'RE NOT GETTING THAT MESSAGE SO.

THEY THINK GIRLS HAVE IT ALL GOING FOR THEM, AND THERE'S ALL THIS POSITIVITY FOR EVERYBODY BUT THEMSELVES.

SO THEY FEEL DISENFRANCHISED, THEY FEEL MARGINALIZED, WHETHER THEY ARE OBJECTIVELY OR NOT, WE CAN'T SAY.

BUT THAT PAIN POINT, THAT AWKWARDNESS, EVEN THE PIMPLES, THE CHANGE HORMONES, THE TESTOSTERONE, ALL OF A SUDDEN FEELING DESIRE, MAKES THEM FEEL LIKE LOST.

AND THAT'S WHERE THESE PEOPLE WHO, IT'S NOT EXTREMIST THE SAY THAT THEY'RE RECRUITING.

THESE PEOPLE RECRUITING INTO THIS IDEOLOGY, THEY HIT OUR BOYS.

THEY TARGET THEM.

THEY SAY, YOU CAN'T JUST SAY WHATEVER YOU WANT ANYMORE, AND YOU'RE BEING POLICED, AND GIRLS HAVE HAVING, AND WHITE BOYS ARE BEING HARMED BY SOCIETY SILENCING THEM.

AND IF YOU DON'T KNOW YOUR KIDS ARE BEING EXPOSED TO THIS, YOU DON'T KNOW HOW TO CHECK THAT NARRATIVE AND COUNTER IT IN A WAY THAT'S LOGICAL FOR THESE KIDS.

SO FOR PARENTS THEN OF THESE YOUNG MEN, IS IT JUST AS SIMPLE AS TELLING THEM, DON'T DO THIS, DON'T SAY THIS?

OR DOES THE APPROACH NEED TO BE A LITTLE MORE NUANCED?

THEY ARE GETTING A LOT OF FEELINGS OF BEING SILENCED AND SHAMED, AND YEAH, AS ADULTS WE MIGHT BE ABLE THE SAY, YOU'RE NOT BEING SILENCED, BUT THEY FEEL THAT WAY, AND IT'S IMPORTANT TO MAKE SURE WE'RE NOT ADDING TO THAT FEELING.

SO FOR INSTANCE, WHAT YOU WANT TO TELL YOUR KIDS IS THERE'S A LOT OF STUFF GOING ON ONLINE THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE FALL FOR, AND PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO TRICK KIDS AND ADULTS, AND IT'S NOT JUST YOU WHO MAY BE TRICKED INTO IT, AND I WANT YOU TO KNOW YOU'LL PROBABLY SEE THINGS THAT AREN'T HONEST, THAT AREN'T REAL, AND I WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT IT'S OKAY IF YOU FALL FOR IT, BUT I'D RATHER HAVE YOU COME TO ME FIRST SO WE CAN TALK.

IF YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND WHAT'S HAPPENING IN A MEME, COME TO ME.

LET'S TALK ABOUT IT.

I'M NOT GOING TO JUDGE YOU.

I'M NOT GOING TO BE MAD.

LET'S JUST GO OVER IT.

BECAUSE IT'S NOT YOUR FAULT THAT THERE'S THESE GROWNUPS OUT THERE THAT THINK THEY CAN TRICK YOU INTO THINKING SOMETHING YOU DON'T BELIEVE, THAT CAN TRICK YOU INTO THINKING SOMETHING YOU NORMALLY WOULDN'T BELIEVE, AND I'M JUST HEAR TO HELP WITH YOU THAT.

DYOU DID OFFER ONE GREAT SUGGESTION, AND THAT WAS TEACHING KIDS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BAD WORDS AND HARMFUL WORDS.

WITH ABOUT A MINUTE LEFT, CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHAT THAT IS AND HOW YOU IMPLEMENT THAT WITH YOUR KIDS?

FROM THE TIME THEY'RE LITTLE WE TELL THEM, THAT'S A BAD WORD, NAUGHTY WORD, DIRTY WORD.

AS THEY GET OLDER, THEY HEAR THE NAUGHTY WORD.

OOH, THAT'S A BAD WORD, AND THERE'S A LITTLE ZING AS THEY GET OLDER TO SAYING THE WORD THEY'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO SAY.

OF COURSE.

YEAH, AND WHAT END UP HAPPENING IS THEY GET TO MIDDLE SCHOOL, THEY WANT TO PUSH BACK AT THE NORMS AND EXPECTATIONS FOR THEM, AND THEN THEY KNOW THERE'S WORDS THEY'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO SAY, BUT THEY'RE HURTFUL WORDS.

SO FROM THE TIME THEY'RE VERY YOUNG, YOU HAVE TO TALK TO THEM ABOUT, LIKE, THIS IS A NAUGHTY WORD SOME PEOPLE FIND RUDE.

THAT'S A HURTFUL WORD THAT CAN MAKE PEOPLE FEEL UNSAFE OR LIKE THEY'RE IN DANGER OR LIKE YOU DON'T CARE ABOUT THEM.

AND THAT DISTINCTION WILL HELP YOUR CHILD GROW THEIR EMPATHY AND UNDERSTAND THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BEING SILENCED AND BEING THOUGHTFUL, BEING ASKED TO BE THOUGHTFUL ABOUT WHAT THEY SAY.

WELL, I THINK THAT'S A GREAT PLACE TO LEAVE IT FOR US.

JOANNA SCHRODER, WRITER, MEDIA CRITIC.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING SCHOOL BUS GIVING US SOME VERY INSIGHTFUL WAYS TO LOOK AT THE CHANGES THAT ARE HAPPENING IN OUR COUNTRY AND CULTURE, SO THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

HAVE A GREAT DAY.

> NEW YORK STATE HAD MORE ANTI-SEMITIC INCIDENTS OF HATE THIS PAST YEAR THAN ANY OTHER STATE IN THE NATION.

THAT ACCORDING TO A NEW REPORT BY THE ANTI-DEFAMATION LEAGUE TITLED 'HATE IN THE EMPIRE STATE, EXTREMISM AND ANTI-SEMITISM IN NEW YORK'. THE REPORT SHOWS THAT HATE CRIMES HAVE INCREASED AGAINST ALL MINORITY GROUPS, BOTH IN UPSTATE NEW YORK, LIKE PAINFULLY IN BUFFALO, WHERE HE JUST WITNESSED RACIST CONSPIRACY THEORIES, DIRECTLY LEADING TO THAT MASS SHOOTING, AND IN NEW YORK CITY, WHERE HATE CRIMES WENT UP A STAGGERING 196% FROM 2020 TO 2021.

JOINING US NOW TO TALK ABOUT THESE DISTURBING TRENDS AND RECOMMENDATIONS ABOUT WHAT WE CAN DO TO HOPEFULLY REVERSE THEM IS SCOTT RICHMOND, THE NEW YORK AND NEW JERSEY REGIONAL DIRECTOR FOR THE ANTI-DEFAMATION LEAGUE.

SCOTT JOINS US AS PART OF OUR EXPLORING HATE INITIATIVE, EXAMINING THE ROOTS AND RISE OF ANTI-SEMITISM AND EXTREMISM IN AMERICA.

THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

THANKS SO MUCH FOR HAVING ME ON.

LET'S START WITH THE REPORT AND GIVE US A SENSE OF STRUCTURE AND CONTENT.

WHAT IS THE TIME FRAME THAT IS INCLUDED HERE, AND WHAT WAS THE FOCUS OF THE INVESTIGATION THAT LED TO THIS REPORT?

SO, THIS IS A REPORT THAT'S NOT JUST ON ANTI-SEMITISM.

ADL RELEASED ITS ANNUAL AUDIT OF ANTI-SEMITIC INCIDENCES A FEW WEEKS AGO.

THIS IS DIFFERENT.

THIS IS A REPORT ON EXTREMISM AND ANTI-SEMITISM.

IT'S A BROADER LOOK AT HATE IN THE STATE.

NOT JUST HATE FOCUSED AT JEWS, BUT HATE FOCUSED ON MANY GROUPS.

WE DON'T LIVE IN A VACUUM HERE.

WE'VE SEEN A GENERAL RISE IN HATE AGAINST THE BLACK COMMUNITY, AGAINST THE LATINO COMMUNITY, AGAINST MUSLIMS, AGAINST CERTAINLY THE ASIAN VIOLENCE WE'VE SEEN, AND AGAINST THE LGBTQ PLUS COMMUNITY.

THESE ARE SOME OF THE COMMUNITIES THAT ARE PRIMARILY TARGETED.

THE PURPOSE OF THIS REPORT WAS REALLY TO LOOK MORE BROADLY AT THIS ISSUE OF HATE IN NEW YORK STATE AND FOCUS SPECIFICALLY ON EXTREMISM FROM 2020, JANUARY 2020 TO THE END OF 2021.

LOOK AT A DISCRETE TWO-YEAR PERIOD.

WHEN WE'RE TALK ABOUT THE NOTION OF HATE INCIDENCES OR HATE CRIMES,ER IN THE REPORT, WHAT'S THE DEFINITION THAT'S BEING USED.

SO, LOOK, THERE IS A DIFFERENCE HERE BETWEEN HATE INCIDENTS AND HATE CRIMES.

REALLY IMPORTANT TO TALK ABOUT THAT.

HATE CRIMES ARE BIASSED, MOTIVATED INCIDENTS THAT RISE TO THE LEVEL OF A CRIME, SOMETHING FOR WHICH YOU'D NEED TO CALL THE POLICE, SOMETHING FOR WHICH YOU'D NEED TO BE ARRESTED.

A LOT OF TIMES WHAT HAPPENS ON SOCIAL MEDIA, WHAT HAPPENS ON THE STREET, SOMEBODY CALLING YOU HATEFUL, CALLING SOMEBODY A DIRTY JEW ON THE STREET OR GAS THE JEWS OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT, ALL OF THESE ARE ISSUES OF SPEECH.

THEY'RE NOT HATE CRIMES.

THEY'RE HATE INCIDENTS.

REALLY IMPORTANT TO MAKE THAT DISTINCTION.

AND HATE CRIMES ARE NOT ALWAYS SO EASY TO PROVE, BECAUSE YOU NEED TO PROVE BIAS MOTIVATION.

YOU NEED TO SHOW THAT SOMETHING THAT THEY SAID OR SOMETHING THAT THEY DID OR SOMETHING IN THEIR SOCIAL MEDIA FEED SHOWS THAT THEY'RE BIASSED, NOT JUST THAT THEY TARGETED AN ASIAN PERSON, OR NOT JUST THAT THEY TARGETED AN AFRICAN AMERICAN PERSON.

THERE HAS TO BE MORE THAN THAT.

SO NOT ALWAYS SO EASY TO PROVE A HATE CRIME.

NEVER NEVERTHELESS, WE'VE SEEN -- AND THIS REPORT SHOWS -- THAT FROM 2020 TO 2021, HATE CRIMES DOUBLED IN NEW YORK, WHICH IS VERY, VERY DISTURBING, AND THAT'S ACTUALLY COMING FROM THE NYPD DATA, NEW YORK POLICE DEPARTMENT DATA.

AND THAT THE GROUPS THAT PRIMARILY WERE TARGETED WERE THE LGBTQ PLUS COMMUNITY, THE AFRICAN AMERICAN COMMUNITY, AND MUSLIM COMMUNITY, AND THE -- SORRY, THE ASIAN COMMUNITY, AND THE JEWISH COMMUNITY.

LET'S TALK ABOUT THE STATISTICS AND THE INCREASE AND SEE IF WE CAN FOCUS ON SOME UNDERSTANDING OF WHY.

BECAUSE CLEARLY WE NEED TO KNOW SOME ANSWERS TO THAT BEFORE WE MOE ON TO HOW DO WE REMEDY THIS.

LET ME START WITH A STATISTIC I BROUGHT UP IN THE INTRODUCTION, WITH NEW YORK STATE HAVING MORE INCIDENTS OF ANTI-SEMITIC HATE THAN ANY OTHER STATE IN THE NATION.

VERY DISTURBING.

YEAH.

WHY DO WE THINK THAT'S HAPPENING?

I'LL TELL YOU AS THE DIRECTOR OF ADL'S OFFICE COVERING NEW YORK -- WE HAVE 25 OFFICES AND I'M THE DIRECTOR FOR NEW YORK AND NEW JERSEY, AND NEW YORK IS NUMBER ONE ACROSS THE COUNTRY WHEN IT COMES TO ANTI-SEMITIC INCIDENCES AND NEW JERSEY IS NUMBER TWO.

NOT THE EASIEST THING TO DEAL WITH.

IN YOUR FUNCTION -- ANECDOTALLY, WE HEAR STORIES ALL THE TIME, SADLY, ON THE NEWS.

WHEN YOU SAW THAT STATISTIC, MORE THAN ANY OTHER STATE IN THE NATION, DID THAT SURPRISE YOU?

I WILL SAY THAT IT SURPRISES ME FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF, YOU KNOW, I LIKE TO THINK WE LIVE IN A DIVERSE METROPOLIS, ONE THAT'S TOLERANT, BUT ON THE OTHER HAND, THERE IS A CORRELATION.

THERE IS A CORRELATION BETWEEN THE NUMBER OF JEWS, AND THE NUMBER OF ANTI-SEMITIC INCIDENTS.

THERE ARE MORE JEWS IN THE NEW YORK AREA THAN ANY OTHER ACROSS THE COUNTRY, 1.75 MILLION WITH ANOTHER 600,000 IN NEW JERSEY.

SO IT'S NOT SO SURPRISING.

YOU DON'T NEED JEWS FOR ANTI-SEMITISM NECESSARILY, BUT WHEN YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT ATTACKS ON JEWISH INSTITUTIONS, THERE ARE MORE INSTITUTIONS HERE THAN ANY OTHER PLACE.

WHEN YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT ASSAULT AGAINST JEWS, YOU DO NEED JEWS FOR THAT.

VISIBLY IDENTIFIABLE JEWS SOME WE SEE MANY ATTACKS AGAINST JEWS ARE AGAINST THOSE WHO HAVE SOME SORT OF MARKER.

THEY'RE WEARING A YARMULKE, THEY'RE WEARING SOME SHIRT, HASIDIC JEWS DRESS.

THERE IS SOME CORRELATION, BUT THERE ARE OTHER FACTORS AT PLAY.

WHAT ABOUT THE PRESENCE AND GROWTH OF IDENTIFIABLE HATE GROUPS IN THE NEW YORK/NEW JERSEY AREA?

WHAT DID YOU FIND?

SO, YOU KNOW, THE REPORT LAYS OUT SEVERAL DIFFERENT TYPES OF GROUPS.

AND HERE WE'RE TALKING ABOUT NOT JUST ANTI-SEMITISM, BUT EXTREMISM IN GENERAL.

YOU HAVE THE GROWTH OF WHITE SUPREMACISTS GROUPS.

AND I WAS ON THE GROUND IN BUFFALO.

I WAS IN BUFFALO FOR THREE DAYS STARTING SATURDAY NIGHT ALMOST IMMEDIATELY OF THIS MASS SHOOTING THAT HAPPENED LAST WEEK -- A WEEK AND A HALF AGO.

AND THAT MASS SHOOTING WAS DONE BY A PERSON WHO BOUGHT INTO WHITE SUPREMACIST IDEAS, BOUGHT INTO THE GREAT REPLACEMENT THEORY.

THAT PERSON HAS NOT BEEN IDENTIFIED AS BEING PART OF A PARTICULAR GROUP, BUT THERE ARE PARTICULAR GROUPS THAT ARE WORKING IN NEW YORK STATE, LIKE THE PATRIOT FRONT, LIKE THE NEW JERSEY EUROPEAN HERITAGE ASSOCIATION, ACTUALLY A NEW JERSEY BASED GROUP, BUT THEY'RE QUITE ACTIVE IN NEW YORK.

AND THE WHITE LIVES MATTER MOVEMENT.

SO THOSE ARE THE PRINCIPLE WHITE SUPREMACIST GROUPS.

BUTS THE NOT JUST WHITE SUPREMACIST GROUPS WE'RE CONCERNED ABOUT.

IT'S ALSO THE NATIONALIST -- LET'S CALL THEM THE RIGHT-WING VIOLENT GROUPS OR MILITIA GROUPS, LIKE THE PROUD BOYS.

WE HAVE HEARD A LOT ABOUT THE PROUD BOYS AND THE OATH KEEPERS.

PROUD BOYS AND OATH KEEPERS ARE TWO GROUPS THAT ARE ASSOCIATED WITH THE JANUARY 6th INSURRECTION.

QUITE ACTIVE HERE IN NEW YORK.

YOU HAVE THE NEW YORK WATCHMEN, WHO ARE ACTIVE IN WESTERN NEW YORK WHERE THE SHOOTING TOOK PLACE IN BUFFALO.

SO, YOU KNOW, QUITE A NUMBER OF GROUPS, PLUS YOU HAVE GROUPS THAT ARE NOT ON THE FAR RIGHT.

YOU HAVE SOME ISLAMIST GROUPS.

YOU HAVE THE NATION OF ISLAM WHO ARE EXTREMIST GROUPS THAT HAVE BEEN RESPONSIBLE FOR CARRYING OUT ACTS.

WE'RE ALSO VERY CONCERNED ABOUT THAT.

YEAH.

WHAT DID YOU FIND WITH REGARD TO THE ROLE OF SOCIAL MEDIA?

WE HEAR THE EXPRESSION SOCIAL MEDIA IS WONDERFUL EXCEPT WHEN IT ISN'T.

THE ROLE OF SOCIAL MEDIA WHEN FANNING THE FLAMES OF HATRED?

SOCIAL MEDIA IS A PARTICULAR PROBLEM.

IT HAS A LOT OF BENEFITS.

IT GIVES PEOPLE A VOICE.

IT MAKES US A MUCH MORE DEMOCRATIC WORLD.

BUT THE PROBLEM IS IT GIVES HATERS A VOICE.

IT'S BEEN A HUGE DRIVER OF HATE.

WHEN WE TALK ABOUT THE RISE IN HATE OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS -- AND BY THE WAY, WE'RE NOT TALKING ABOUT MANY, MANY DECADES OF A RISE IN HATE.

WE'RE TALKING ABOUT PERHAPS A DECADE'S WORTH OF TIME HERE.

WE'VE SEEN HATE STEADILY RISE OVER THE COURSE OF A DECADE, AND SOCIAL MEDIA'S BEEN A BIG DRIVER OF THAT, BECAUSE IT GIVES PEOPLE WHO OTHERWISE WOULD HAVE HAD THEIR VOICE MARGINALIZED, THEY WOULD HAVE BEEN PUSHED TO THE EXTREMES.

IT GIVES THEM A PLATFORM FOR GETTING THEIR HATE OUT.

JUST THINK ABOUT IT.

IF SOMEBODY IN 1995 WANTED TO GET THEIR VOICE OUT HE WOULD HAVE NEEDED TO APPROACHED A TELEVISION STATION, A RADIO STATION, A NEWSPAPER, AND THOSE ENTITIES WOULD HAVE SAID NO, THIS DOES NOT FIT WITH OUR VALUES.

YOU CANNOT PUBLICIZE -- YOU CANNOT PUT YOUR VOICE ON OUR RADIO STATION, TELEVISION STATION OR NEWSPAPER.

THAT'S TRADITIONALLY THE WAY THAT HATE IS CONTROLLED.

SOCIETY SOCIAL MEDIA PUSHES OUR SOCIETY TO THE MARGINS.

SOCIAL MEDIA HAS PLATFORMS.

THEY DON'T NEED TO ASK ANYBODY.

AND SOME OF THOSE PLATFORMS, THANKS IN PART TO THE WORK OF ADL NOW HAVE CONTENT MODERATION POLICIES.

POLICIES THAT SAY, NO, THERE ARE LIMITS TO WHAT YOU CAN DO, THE HATE YOU CAN PUT ON OUR SITE.

WELL, THE PROBLEM WITH THAT IS FIRST OF ALL, THEY NEED TO CONTROL THAT.

THEY NEED TO BE ON TOP OF THAT.

ADL HAS PLAYED A ROLE IN SEEING TO FACEBOOK AND SNAPCHAT AND INSTAGRAM AND TWITTER AND TIKTOK THAT YOU HAVE THESE POLICIES BUT YOU'RE NOT ABIDING BY ALL OF THEM.

WE PUT OUT A REPORT CARD ON HOW WELL SOCIAL MEDIA COMPANIES ARE DOING THAT.

THE OTHER PROBLEM WITH THAT IS THAT THERE ARE SITES LIKE TELEGRAM AND GAB AND PARLOR THAT DON'T HAVE CONTENT MODERATION POLICIES SO YOU SEE THAT MANY OF THESE EXTREMISTS GRAVITATE TO THOSE SITES.

WE SAW THAT WITH THE SHOOTER IN BUFFALO THAT HE WAS ON DISCHORD, THAT HE PUT THE -- YOU COULD FIND VIDEO OF HIM DOING THIS ATTACK ON THOSE FAR-RIGHT SITES.

IT'S STILL CIRCULATING AROUND.

S YOU SAID, THE MARGINS WE'VE SEEN DON'T EXIST ANYMORE.

I'VE GOT A MINUTE AND A HALF LEFT.

I KNOW THIS REPORT -- PEOPLE SHOULD READ IT.

THERE'S A SECTION ON RECOMMENDATIONS.

WE DON'T HAVE TIME TO TALK ABOUT ALL OF THEM, BUT GIVE ME IN THE MINUTE OR SO, HIGHLIGHTS OF RECOMMENDATIONS THAT ARE COMING OFF THIS REPORT.

SO, YEAH, THERE ARE QUITE OF NUMBER OF RECOMMENDATIONS, BUT ONE OF THEM IS TO FORM AN ANTI ANTI-SEMITISM COMMISSION AT THE STATE LEVEL, VERY IMPORTANT, TO INCREASE FUNDING FOR NONPROFIT SECURITY, TO DOUBLE IT FROM 25 MILLION TO $50 MILLION, TO FIND A WAY TO REPORT BETTER THE HATE CRIMES THAT ARE HAPPENING AND TO CREATE AN ENTITY WITHIN THE ATTORNE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE TO DO THAT.

SO, YOU KNOW, THERE ARE MANY CONSTRUCTIVE WAYS TO ATTACK HATE, BUT I WANT TO SAY, YOU KNOW, IN ADDITION TO ALL OF THOSE, THERE ARE MANY FAR-REACHING AND FUTURE PROACTIVE KINDS OF WAYS -- ANTI-BIAS PROGRAM, ANTI-BULLYING PROGRAMS IN OUR SCHOOLS -- INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT.

HOLOCAUST EDUCATION PROGRAMS IN OUR SCHOOLS.

THESE WILL LOOK FORWARD TO A FUTURE WHERE PEOPLE RESPECT ONE ANOTHER, CELEBRATE DIVERSITY.

THINGS WE CAN ALL DO AND ALL ENGAGE IN.

ABSOLUTELY.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US.

THE REPORT IS TITLED 'HATE IN THE EMPIRE STATE, EXTREMISM AND ANTI-SEMITISM IN NEW YORK'. APPRECIATE YOUR TIME.

YOU BE WELL.

THANK YOU.

> 'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY -- SUE AND EDGAR WACHENHEIM III, THE PETER G. PETERSON AND JOAN GANZ COONEY FUND, BERNARD AND DENISE SCHWARTZ, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG, THE AMBROSE MONELL FOUNDATION.

AND BY --

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