In 2018, the Queens Tribune celebrates its 48th birthday. At the time that it was founded by former U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman, the Vietnam War was raging and, several years later, the Watergate scandal would engulf U.S. politics. It was an important era for the news media.
As the Tribune nears its 50th year in existence, we find ourselves in another period during which newspapers and online media play a vital role. As the current White House administration labels any news organization that doesn’t bow down to President Donald Trump as “fake news”—and Congress enables such behavior by doing absolutely nothing to rein him in—the news media are more important than ever.
The press is often referred to as the “fourth estate” since one of its roles is to investigate and report on our leaders—both locally and nationally—in government to keep their power in check. At the Queens Tribune, we take this role seriously and intend to continue doing so in the years to come.
Each year, we pick a theme for our anniversary issue. Last year, we covered Queens’ immigrant population in the wake of Trump’s ban on people from seven Muslim countries and hard-line immigration policies. This year, we have put together a list of 48 reasons why Queens—which is the world’s most diverse county—is unique. The issue celebrates our borough—from its cultural institutions to its cuisine—and aims to draw visitors to Queens to find out what we’re all about.
With nearly 140 languages spoken in our borough and residents from approximately 190 nations, Queens is a microcosm of the world. So, while our anniversary issue zeroes in on some of our favorite borough sites, there are clearly more than 48 reasons why Queens is unique. It is this paper’s intent to reflect year-round what makes the borough such a special place.