Current State of New York City

I see two New Yorks, one for the rich and one for everyone else, and, as a direct result, two different realities. These two realities have made themselves very clear during the pandemic. On one end, there’s escapism, on the other, depression. NY is in an identity and existential crisis amplified by the global pandemic, the economic recession, social injustice, and political chaos.

The classic New Yorker social skills that drove so much serendipity, innovation and cultural openness seem to be less valuable today due to the inability to have human interactions in person. What is New York without these interactions? New York, in my opinion, is currently having high levels of mental illness: the poor have less money, which brings on anxiety, depression, dejection; and, many of the rich who have not already left New York seem to have a level of arrogance and coldness towards the less fortunate. The aforementioned circumstances have been amplified during COVID-19 and the general lack of positive human interactions hasn’t helped.

The current dark cloud that New York is under has replaced the ‘If You Can Make It Here, You Can Make It Anywhere’ narrative with ‘Too Bad.’

With all of that being said, there‘s an opportunity for a new vision of the city. There’s always a renaissance after darkness, and I see that we have an opportunity to make sure that all New Yorkers have a slice of equity in the ‘pie’ that is New York City. We can rid the city of just ‘the wealth’ controlling everything, and make NY a city of the people for the people – which still includes the rich, just not front and center.

NYC has to meet the demands of the 21st Century: wellness, education, technology, communication skills, culture, infrastructure, humanities, racial sensitivity, finance, and ethics.

New York has been known as the leader for trends and ideas. We were heading in the right direction when we did things like revitalize the highline and turn it into a functional communal space. We can do better, but currently NY lacks leadership and the toxicity is growing with economic uncertainty, a global pandemic, division, and anger. The City needs leadership who understands the New Yorkers who live here in every neighborhood.

Right now, we need leadership that is going to address our current issues and problems with real, long-term, deep-rooted, holistic solutions that put all of the people of this great city’s health and wellness first. Leadership that leads from kindness and empathy.