Should he hang on to his Primary Day lead, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams vowed Thursday, he will bring back the magic to New York City as a place where dreams are made of and anything is possible.
Speaking to a gaggle of reporters outside Brooklyn Borough Hall for the first time since winning the most first-choice votes in the Democratic mayoral primary on Tuesday, Adams said he aims to change what he believes to be a current, fearful collective psyche into one of fearlessness.
“New Yorkers are gritty. Don’t ever take that away from New York, and know what we have lost. You’ve lost that mojo. This used to be the city where you come here and you will dream big. So when I’m talking about bitcoins and cryptocurrency and drones and technology, when I talk about vertical farming. These [are] ideas we are losing out to other states because we are afraid,” said Adams.
While espousing lofty ideals, Adams also noted that if Democrats nationally do not address the urban problems plaguing many American cities — such as growing crime rates and homelessness — in a very real concrete way, they risk losing more seats around the country during the next midterm elections.
Adams gave kudos to President Biden for his recently announced plans to address public safety. In order to do this, Adams believes New York City needs a joint gun task force similar to the joint terrorist task force in which the NYPD works in tandem with the FBI and other federal agencies.
“America has betrayed the inner city cities in this country. The Black and Brown brown problem in America has never been assault rifles, that is an issue we have to address because of the mass shootings, but we need to deal with the real crisis that has always been here. If you go to the south side of Chicago, Brownsville, Detroit, Atlanta. Ninety-five percent of the victims have been Black and Brown and 95 percent of the shooters have been Black and Brown. No one dealt with this. So we kept raising this voice here in New York. I’m glad the President heard it,” Adams said.
If he becomes mayor, Adams said that he plans on hiring a female police commissioner and has already spoken to three possible candidates.
Adams also looked ahead to the general election, and a possible matchup against Republican nominee, Curtis Sliwa. They’re not strangers to each other from their past history in protecting the transit system — Adams as a transit cop, Sliwa as founder of the civilian Guardian Angels program.
While Sliwa seeks a campaign focused almost entirely on public safety, Adams stressed that the job of mayor is far more complex.
“But this city is about more than just public safety. It’s about the economy. It’s about education. It’s about affordable housing. So all of those things come together. There’s a qualitative difference between Eric Adams and Curtis Sliwa, and we will see that in the next couple of months,” he said.