Perhaps it is too early to draw definitive conclusions, but the vibes we are getting from mayor-elect Adams are encouraging and vindicate our having endorsed him for mayor. Despite his being largely a product of the overwhelming liberal Democratic-oriented New York City political establishment, he continues to speak as if he shares our view that what sunk Democrats around the country last week was broad disdain for the Bill De Blasio-style “Tale of Two Cities” thinking.
We mean the sort of thinking that calls for a result-oriented agenda of arbitrarily seeking “social and economic justice” rather than focusing on opening the doors of opportunity to all and building the city’s economy. The kind of thinking that would close programs for gifted and talented children because members of certain groups were not meeting entrance standards rather than focusing on helping them meet those standards.
It was the kind of thinking that urged closing down highly successful charter schools because they provided a better education than the public schools but where there were not enough seats for everyone, rather than support their expansion.
It was the kind of thinking that called for dumbing down standards in public schools because some kids couldn’t cut the mustard, rather than helping them to excel.
It was the kind of thinking that supported novel decarceration plans that would arbitrarily cap the city’s jail population and close down of Riker’s Island, relying on alternative, noncustodial approaches – rather than continuing with successful approaches of the past.
It was the kind of thinking that wanted a war against the police through defunding whole departments, and arguing for presumptive police guilt in excessive force controversies because some chafed under rigorous enforcement of the law. It was the kind of thinking that sought the end of “stop and frisk” despite its demonstrated usefulness in preventing gun violence and crime in general.
It was the kind of thinking that got rid of cash bail because members of certain groups couldn’t make bail, no matter that it predictably spawned turnstile justice and the wholesale release of criminals to the street.
The result of this sort of misplaced idealism is now plain for all to see. We didn’t buy into it and it seems most voters agreed with us. Let’s hope that as mayor, Eric Adams follows through beginning on January 1.