NYC’s first family marks a new day
Reginald J. Clyne | 1/16/2014, 9 a.m.
I watched the inauguration of Bill De Blasio as New York’s 109th mayor with my parents. To my parents, the inauguration of a white man married to a Black women with Black children is almost as amazing as having a Black president. Even after 5 years of the Obama Presidency, my father still states with amazement, “we have a Black president.” My father is a New Yorker, the product of a mixed marriage. His parents could not hold hands in public, because of the real fear that my grandfather would get beaten or lynched for being with a white
woman. My grandmother was spat on because she had the temerity to marry a Black man, and to proudly bear him two sons. To my father’s generation who grew up in a segregated America, who remember when Blacks could only hold certain jobs, when sitting in the back of the bus was the norm — the transformation of this country to one where a majority of the population will support a Black president and a white man married to a Black women — is surreal. Mayor De Blasio is an out and out liberal. He unabashedly supports workers, fights for better housing for the poor, disagrees with the stop and frisk policy, wants to improve traditional public education, wants to keep open public hospitals and wants to improve the lives of the poor. While Wall Street has been booming, the majority of New Yorkers, like the majority of Americans are still suffering. It is becoming harder and harder to make ends meet. As Mayor De Blasio puts it — New York is a Tale of Two Cities — a City where the very rich are getting richer and working class continues to see life become grimmer. New York, a liberal bastion, has not had a Democratic Mayor for over 20 years. New York is now in the hands of a liberal who wants to rectify years of social and economic inequality and make the lives of the working class better. He is starting by taxing those making between $500,000 and $1 million — a mere $973 per year, approximately $2.66 per day — the cost of a latte. With this sum, he intends to provide universal pre-Kindergarden education for every New York child and provide after school programs for middle school children. It is amazing what you can accomplish by taxing the very rich a cup of coffee per day. Hopefully, the social experiment about to be embarked by New York will be successful, and more importantly it will be emulated. It is time to stop bickering about race and gender, and to start addressing the real problem — social and economic inequality.