Dear people of New York City: We do not understand. Some of us who live upstate. We do not understand.
Wait. Let me put that into Big Apple lingo: What??? Are youse nuts or sumpin’?
I refer to your upcoming election. You are going to elect a new mayor who is so liberal Fidel could take lessons from him. And he is promising to reverse basic policies that have made the City easier to visit and live in. And safer. Don’t forget safer.
Apparently you have. This guy says he will sack Police Commissioner Kelly. He wants to kill “stop and frisk” policies that have helped bring your murder numbers down and down. They have taken truckloads of weapons off your streets. He wants to reverse policies of Bloomy and Giuliani that rescued your streets from thugs.
We don’t understand.
Used to be a battalion of squeegee guys would extort cash from us when we drove into the City. Used to be we did not park on your streets. Because we enjoyed our car having a radio. Used to be we didn’t dare break down on the Henry Hudson Parkway. Leave for thirty minutes, we came back to a car without wheels. Leave for an hour, no doors! Today we can park and leave the car unlocked.
Used to be New York was about the most dangerous city in the western world. Today it is the safest. Used to be we wore bullet-proof undies to walk your streets at night. We looked over our shoulder constantly. These days, none of that.
Used to be we went to Toronto to watch musicals. Rather than chance a mugging or two on Broadway. Now we come to New York.
Used to be waiters and hotel clerks and people on your streets abused us. They abused each other. They were nasty. Because in such a wretched atmosphere they trusted no one. Today, we find friendliness everywhere in the City.
Used to be we could spot the city folks when they arrived upstate for vacations and weekends. They looked hunted. They looked like they had escaped a jungle. Which they had. These days they tell us they love the upstate quiet. But they love the city too.
You know all those busloads of pink-haired ladies coming into town to lunch and catch a matinee? In the bad old years the buses were carrying pink-haired ladies out of the city.
So what is it with you people and your election?
Finally, you have seen some improvement in your schools. Led by charter schools. Charter schools have made big and positive differences in the lives of your kids.
And you are going to elect a guy who hates them? He promises to make it more costly for charters to operate.
Maybe this is our fault. You drink water from upstate. Maybe we’ve got rabid raccoons peeing in the water. They do that, you know. Can’t stop ‘em.
Maybe some of our new upstate distilleries are dumpin’ hootch into the streams that feed your reservoirs. And we grow a lot of weed up here. Maybe… ? Who knows?
We are simple folks up here. We don’t understand complicated things like running a big city. But this much we do understand: The Big Apple used to be the Big Cesspool. We avoided it and you fled it. Because it had four or five times the murders it now has. It had muggings by the tens of thousands. It had areas where cops dared not drive through at high speed. Nastiness to visitors was its middle name.
Today it is much, much, much improved. And now you want to elect a guy who promises to dismantle the very programs that worked for you?
Are youse guys whacky or sumpin’?
From Tom...as in Morgan.