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We Focus On Religious Persecution with Local Imam and Rabbi

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  In the wake of the shootings at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, we’re zeroing in on religious persecution. The attacks killed 50 people, 29 remain hospitalized, and the first funerals take place today.

Also, today is Purim. The Jewish holiday celebrates the saving of the Jewish people from Haman, an advisor to King Xerxes of Persia. The account is recorded in the biblical story of Esther.

Imam Mohamed Al-Darsani and Rabbi Nicole Luna join us in the studio. Imam Mohamed of the Islamic Center for Peace and Rabbi Luna of Temple Beth-El - both based in Fort Myers - share their thoughts on anti-Semitism and Islamophobia during the rise of white supremacy.  

Rachel Iacovone is a reporter and associate producer of Gulf Coast Live for WGCU News. Rachel came to WGCU as an intern in 2016, during the presidential race. She went on to cover Florida Gulf Coast University students at President Donald Trump's inauguration on Capitol Hill and Southwest Floridians in attendance at the following day's Women's March on Washington.Rachel was first contacted by WGCU when she was managing editor of FGCU's student-run media group, Eagle News. She helped take Eagle News from a weekly newspaper to a daily online publication with TV and radio branches within two years, winning the 2016 Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award for Best Use of Multimedia in a cross-platform series she led for National Coming Out Day. She also won the Mark of Excellence Award for Feature Writing for her five-month coverage of an FGCU student's transition from male to female.As a WGCU reporter, she produced the first radio story in WGCU's Curious Gulf Coast project, which answered the question: Does SWFL Have More Cases of Pediatric Cancer?Rachel graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University with a bachelor's degree in journalism.