I saw some of last night’s protests in New York. Claiming that they were protesting the death of Jordan Neely and the lack of charges (so far) for the man who put him into a chokehold, a large group of activists decided to stand on the tracks and bring the New York subway system to a halt.
It was dumb. First off, there was no guarantee that the trains were going to be able to stop before rolling over the protestors. One idiot was actually filmed jumping up and down on the electrified third rail. If the rail’s cover had slipped in the slightest, both he and his Che Guevara shirt would have been fried. Secondly, standing on the tracks isn’t doing anything to inconvenience the powerful. Kathy Hochul was not on the subway. Leticia James was not on the subway. Eric Adams was not on the subway. Alvin Bragg was not on the subway. The people who write the laws of the city and the state were not on the subway. The whole reason most people pursue positions of power is exactly so they’ll never have to ride the subway again. Instead, the people on the subway were largely working class people who were either returning from or going to their job. Inconveniencing them accomplished nothing, beyond making the protestors look bad.
But when protests are more about getting social media engagement than actually brining about change, these are the things that are going to happen.
Lee Zeldin has tossed his hat into the ring to run for governor of New York. He says his platform will be that New York can’t afford any more of Cuomo. Personally, I think he’s right. I also find it interesting that he’s apparently assuming that Cuomo is going to be the Democratic nominee.
If Cuomo is the nominee, I think he’d still have a fair shot of winning because that’s the way New York is. New York is bluer than it’s ever been. It probably doesn’t help that the GOP use it and California in much the same way that the Democrats used Texas and Florida. When you continually tell a state that you think it represents everything bad about America, you can’t be surprised when your candidates struggle there.
Still, Cuomo would definitely be at his weakest and I get the feeling a lot of Democrats would prefer to see him step aside in 2022. What if Cuomo refuses to retire, though? Do the Democrats bite the bullet and renominate him? Do they try to impeach him? My guess is that they would try to beat him in a primary but that’s always a difficult thing to do with an incumbent and it would mean that a Democrat would have to step up and say that everyone in the party was wrong when they spent 2020 saying that Cuomo was the best governor in the country. And what if multiple serious candidates run against Cuomo and make it onto the primary ballot? What if Bill De Blasio somehow sneaks away with the nomination? (That’s a result that certainly would make Republicans happy.)
Personally, I’m hoping the best for Lee Zeldin but he’s got an uphill climb in front of him.
As a result of the fallout over the deal his office cut with pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, Labor Secretary Alex Acosta has resigned. That’s a good thing.
Now, how about Cy Vance?
If not for the man’s name and his parentage, Cyrus Vance, Jr. would just be another obscure attorney in New York. Because he was born with the right connections, Cy Vance is now Manhattan’s district attorney. Since that time, his record has been one of putting the poor in jail while looking the other way for the rich and powerful. Along with not pursuing a case against Harvey Weinstein (until the pressure of public opinion forced him to do do), Vance’s office also continually sought reduced sex offender status for Jeffrey Epstein. Looking over Vance’s record, it is easy to see a pattern where, as long as you had enough money and influence, you could get away with almost anything. Instead of protecting the victims, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office has a history of protecting the predators.
By all means, Acosta should have resigned. New York’s Democratic Party should pressure Cy Vance to follow his example.