Monday, December 22, 2014

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NY1 Political Director Bob Hardt's daily look Inside City Hall.

NY1 ItCH: An Unconventional Call for a Boycott in Brooklyn

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Readers of The New York Times and the New York Post yesterday morning may have been shocked to see a full-page ad taken out in their papers by the Sergeants Benevolent Association, telling the Democratic National Committee not to bring its convention to Brooklyn in 2016.

“Mayor de Blasio has not earned the right to play host to such an important event,’’ says the union’s president, Ed Mullins, who described the city as “lurching backwards to the bad old days of high crime, danger-infested public spaces, and families that walk our streets worried for their safety.”

If the SBA’s only goal was to grab people’s attention, they got it. But the ad was more “Batman” ransom note than a thoughtful attempt at trying to clear the air in Gotham City.

Since 1976, New York has hosted four political conventions and the crime rate – particularly in 1992 – was far higher than it is now. And yet all of the conventions were logistical successes – with three of the four nominees winning the White House. (It was a tough year for Jimmy Carter in 1980.)

And it’s unclear how a boycott of the city by the DNC helps anyone – except the residents of another town where the convention would then be held. This isn’t exactly Sun City.

If the SBA wants to blast de Blasio, Al Sharpton, and anyone with questions about the killing of Eric Garner, that’s up to the union. But declaring the city unsafe at any speed isn’t part of the NYPD’s job description. Mullins should take a deep breath before he starts writing another letter.

Bob Hardt

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