Free New York

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Episode #836: Easy Access
First Broadcast: 8/12/19
Two mass shootings within 13 hours of each other--one in El Paso, Texas, and one in Dayton, Ohio--sparked another national discussion about how this uniquely American problem can be solved. Since the El Paso shooter published a manifesto that repeated white supremacist talking points, and since the Dayton shooter expressed left-wing views on social media, some people saw this as evidence that the problem of mass shootings goes beyond ideology, so no ideology is to blame, and if it is to blame, then the left wing is just as responsible for encouraging violence as the right wing. This combination of theories has some giant problems, however. For one, most of the modern left-wing movements in this country do not encourage mass violence towards others, while white supremacist movements by their very definition encourage mass violence towards non-whites. For another, these explanations completely ignore the one factor present in almost all mass shootings in this country, namely: guns that are capable of firing multiple rounds at such high rates and velocities that mass death is almost guaranteed every time they are used against people. So, you have weapons that enable mass death on side, and an ideology that encourages mass death on the other. Together, they provide racist white men (it's almost always white men) both the tools and the rationale to murder whomever they deem undesirable at the time, a situation that certainly isn't helped when you have a President and an entire cable network that both constantly repeat white supremacist talking points and discourage enacting forms of gun control that might actually remove assault weapons from the public. It seems clear to me that confronting these twin issues is necessary to reduce the chances of more mass shootings in this country in the future. Will we as a nation actually do anything about it? That's the big question.

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So, what is Free New York anyway? The simple answer is that it's a this neat little public access TV show on Manhattan Neighborhood Network which I co-produce with the tremendous help of my camerawoman/editor/everything else, Kim. The complicated answer is that it's a project of mine to broadcast opinions and events which don't always appear within "the mainstream media" (like The New York Times, the major networks, local radio, etc.), and so far I think it's been working.

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Free New York
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And now, the "Thought of the Moment" . . .

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