Come out to Broadway sometime this autumn and prepare yourself for the revival of the century. I’m sure you’re all bored of the phantoms in their operas and the Lion King on DVD will satisfy your craving for Disney just fine.
It’s a 1930s revival and not a great work by Eugene O’Neil or an extravagant musical production. In fact, it’s by any theater. If you look hard enough on the sidewalk, you can see the players asking for money for a bite to eat at the nearest bodega. They’re dressed in authentic rags and they do not act; their suffering is not for our enjoyment, but no one, pedestrian or government official does anything to participate. This show is New York City, Bill de Blasio’s New York City, where the mayor’s approval ratings have dropped to an all time low of 38 percent, according to CBS.
To understand why his ratings are so low, one must only take a trip down Broadway to get a glimpse of what the city has become. From Brooklyn, you see the large city buildings; and, from a distance on any city block, you can see the bright city lights at night that illuminate the lives of people without shelter, food and adequate life on the city streets.
In this city, 59,305 are without homes and 23,923 of people sleeping in homeless shelters are children. The overall number is nearly 20,000 more than the peak amount of homeless during the Bloomberg administration, according to the Coalition for the Homeless, an administration whose policies Bill de Blasio is trying hard to overturn.
There’s a major crisis happening in the city and whether you’re native to New York City or just dorming for the next four years, you cannot deny the impact of it around you.
Presently, while we go down to the financial aid office to fight for a problem on our large tuition bill, the homeless ascend from the welfare and unemployment offices losing a fight for a morning bagel and maybe a sip of clean water. While we sleep cozy in the uncomfortable conditions of Donovan, the homeless will sleep in the uncomfortable conditions of concrete beds. While we go to the dining hall for a bite to eat and complain about the food, the homeless will spend starving days begging for a dime to deaf ears, a feeling of loneliness and despair that no cheerful Salvation Army Santa can lift.
We live under the administration of a man without the slightest regards to these human lives. While president Obama successfully increases the number of jobs throughout the nation, our mayor successfully allows the numbers of people without jobs and housing to increase in the city that boasts itself on Frank Sinatra’s lines “if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere.”
Old Frank may have remained the greatest spokesman for the city had not the Hobbesian thumb of Bill de Blasio prevented even the slightest hint of success from happening in these past months. That New York is not so far in the past, and if we reach our hands out far enough, maybe we can bring its reign over New York and allow it to prosper once again. At the very least, maybe we can get 59,000 individuals a home and a basic breakfast every morning.