Another New York City mayoral race is upon us, and there’s a wide variety of candidates from all kinds of backgrounds and ideologies vying for their spot atop the coveted stem of the Big Apple.
Sure enough, they’ve introduced all kinds of exciting policy proposals that would define their tenure if elected. But as can happen in a heated campaign, some topics have slipped through the cracks.
In particular, there’s been a vacuum of leadership on one crucial issue: How will our next mayor help hard-working New Yorkers keep Mom entertained when she visits the city?
First thing’s first: our new mayor must totally overhaul our education system. Specifically, we need increased funding towards programs that inform Mom that it’s totally impractical to visit the Statue of Liberty and the Apollo Theater on the same day. It takes seconds to get from one to the other in a travel series montage; it’s more like 48 minutes via the 3 train.
When it comes to arts and culture, having a plan to increase funding for the city’s museums is a great start. But New York’s next mayor should go a step further. Who will be the first mayoral candidate to pledge that they will personally spend an entire day taking Mom to the Cloisters so that she can have fun while we run a few errands? She’s gonna love it — just do us this solid.
Speaking of arts, New York has played a pivotal role in the shows we know and love. That is why we need a mayor who can explain to Mom that actually, Friends was mostly shot in Los Angeles, and the café where Ross and Rachel had their first kiss was really just a soundstage, so she’s better off wandering Central Park than hunting down Central Perk — even though Rick Steves didn’t mention the former in his guidebook.
Tragically, the pandemic exposed the gaping holes in our city’s healthcare system — including the health and fitness of those most vulnerable. Just look at Mom, who didn’t realize Manhattan had such long blocks, and would really rather just hop in a taxi to go from Columbus Circle to the Starbucks at 64th and Central Park West. Subsidized exercise programs could provide Mom — and countless moms like her — the YMCA Zumba classes she needs to get into walking shape.
What’s more, it’s encouraging that different candidates have offered their plans to combat climate change. But big challenges must be met with bold action — which is why our next mayor must provide New York residents with scarves to hand Mom when she gets a little chilly because her table at Junior’s Cheesecake is right by the air conditioner. We’ve offered to switch seats with her, but she’d rather not make a scene.
There’s no question that New York has a public housing crisis. The simple truth is, we need spacious, comfortable accommodations for all New Yorkers so that Mom doesn’t spend the entire trip repeating how big a house she could afford in Canton for the rent we’re paying in Brooklyn. Because avoiding an argument about how a dishwasher shouldn’t be a luxury, shouldn’t be a luxury.
Then there’s the question every New Yorker has asked themselves: If New York is the greatest city in the world, then why is its infrastructure so badly broken? If we want to keep pace with every other major metropolis, our next mayor must invest in the Subway — where Mom has insisted we get lunch even though there are literally hundreds of them in our hometown. Yes, she knows Lenwich is more convenient, and Katz’s is more authentic. But they don’t have Italian Herb & Cheese bread, and evidently, that’s her only criteria.
The next mayor of the city that never sleeps also needs to understand that support for small businesses and a strong platform of racial justice can be — and must be — deeply intertwined. For example, Mom desperately needs to be exposed to PSAs with messages like: “You can’t call every non-white person you see with a cart a ‘halal guy,’” “There are specific halal guys,” “It’s a brand, Mom,” “Mom, you’re talking really loud,” “They do so speak English,” and “The yogurt sauce isn’t spicy. Just try it.”
Finally, it’s an absolute must that whoever takes the helm of this city continues New York’s long-standing tradition of strict gun control. That way, we won’t make any hasty decisions when Mom insists that we walk through Times Square for the fourth time in a week.