Op-LED: The King Is No More – An Open Letter To Mike Bloomberg

BY Led Black (@Led_Black)

I am SOOOOOO happy that you will no longer be the Mayor of this great city.

You have no idea.

I REALLY MEAN THAT! (All caps on purpose – so take that.)

I am ridiculously elated that starting tomorrow, I will no longer have to hear your incredibly annoying voice and deal with that “I am rich therefore I am better than you” vibe that you so noxiously exude and has ruinously become the very mantra and modus operandi of the greatest city on earth.

Even when I agreed with you on whatever the subject may be, your arrogant-rich-bastard persona is so off-putting and nauseating that it made me instinctively rethink my position.

As a Latino, I am especially glad that we will no longer be subjected to your routine and violent murder of the Spanish language at your press conferences.

I must say, however, that you did have some really cool Sign Language people present at those things. I have never seen people do sign language with such rhythm, soul and pizazz. It was truly mesmerizing. Kudos on that! Note to de Blasio – please re-hire them – they are amazing.

But in all seriousness, in the last 12 years, New York City, has become a polarized citadel of wealth, power and inequality. It has literally become a place, where there is the rich and then there is everybody else. Digest this: Almost half the city’s residents live in poverty, or too damn near it and the middle class is fast becoming an endangered species in NYC.

In a post on Income inequality, The New Yorker put it this way, “according to recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau, if the borough of Manhattan were a country, the income gap between the richest twenty per cent and the poorest twenty per cent would be on par with countries like Sierra Leone, Namibia, and Lesotho.”

And you could care less about income inequality as is made obvious from one of your many poor-people-go-f-yourselves quotes.

“If we could get every billionaire around the world to move here, it would be a godsend.”  

But it is not just what you have said that has offended but your actions that have been that more grievous. It is your “the rich are better” mentality, esprit de corps and alignment that have detrimentally permeated into and dictated your policies. You have purposely made poor people poorer. You have purposely made this a city where poor people cannot afford to live. You have purposely forced them to move further and further out. You have purposely made this a city where the rich live and play and the poor suffer and toil.

You are the living-breathing example, specimen and personification of the deleterious and democracy-killing notion that money matters above all. That the rich are to be obeyed, catered to and allowed to rule the roost unmolested. At one point in your tenure as mayor, you were not just the mayor of the city but also the richest man in the city. Conflict of interest much?

Not to mention that you also bullied, bribed and opened up the royals coffers to give yourself a third term. An election, I might add, you narrowly almost lost to William Thompson (who?), even though you outspent him $102 million (about $183 per voter) to less than $10 million.

The litany does not end there. Let’s discuss your blatantly racist “Stop And Frisk” policies that you are so fond of and that will forever tarnish your legacy. In a column on the very topic, Slate’s Justin Peters succinctly puts it this way, “Every year since 2003, blacks and Latinos have consistently accounted for around 85 percent of stop-and-frisk selectees; according to 2010 census data, blacks and Latinos make up 52.6 percent of New York City’s total population.”

“Even in neighborhoods that are predominantly white, black, and Latino New Yorkers face the disproportionate brunt,” reports the New York Civil Liberties Union. For example, in 2011, Black and Latino New Yorkers made up 24 percent of the population in Park Slope, but 79 percent of stops.”

Try this little morsel on for size on marijuana arrests in New York City, courtesy of NY Times writer Jim Dwyer, “About 87 percent of the marijuana arrests in the Bloomberg era have been of blacks and Latinos, most of them men, and generally under the age of 25 — although surveys consistently show that whites are more likely to use it.

When the ball drops tonight, I will be hopefully celebrating an end of era where avarice, money and prejudice determine our destiny. New York City is the capital of the world. If immigrants and working people don’t have a shot in New York City, then New York City doesn’t have a shot. We are New York City!

Long Live NYC!

Pa’Lante Siempre Pa’Lante

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