Our next mayor, Akeem Browder


An open letter to Akeem Browder: 

Now that it appears likely that your name will appear on the ballot in November as the Green Party candidate for mayor of the city of New York, I urgently call upon you to speak out clearly and unequivocally on two issues of the most pressing concern and immediacy to the community of Riverdale-Kingsbridge-Spuyten Duyvil.

Namely, as our next mayor, it is imperative for you to immediately address in a constructive manner the critical, far-too-long neglected problem of intolerable overcrowding at P.S. 24 Spuyten Duyvil in the Bronx. Over many decades, P.S. 24 has been, and still is, an exceptional public school with an outstanding record of educational excellence.

P.S. 24 is now one of the most successfully integrated and diverse public schools in the city. P.S. 24 cannot be allowed, and must not be allowed to fail. The ceaseless rounds of finger-pointing and frivolous lawsuits around senseless side issues at this school must end. The long-running divisiveness and polarization, arising through insidious racist and xenophobic innuendo, must end pronto.

You, Akeem, as our next mayor, have the power to make this happen. And, truth be told, you have the power and the opportunity to make this happen now.

Quite frankly, Akeem, our community in the northwest Bronx has had its fill of the outrageous shenanigans of P.S. 24 assistant principal Manuel Verdi, and of attorney Ezra Glaser.  

Therefore, I call upon you, Akeem, to now step up to the plate to resolve the divisiveness and polarization that has long plagued P.S. 24 by calling upon all sides to seek a constructive solution — forthwith and without delay — to the longstanding gross overcrowding at P.S. 24.

It is also imperative and of the utmost urgency that you, as our next mayor, immediately address the present mayor’s intolerable and totally unacceptable non-solution to the rapidly escalating scourge of homelessness that is afflicting all of our communities. In particular, I would call your attention to the construction of temporary shelters, especially in the outer boroughs.

Particularly outrageous and scandalous is the attempt by the city’s homeless services department — operating by means of stealth and deception — to open a temporary homeless shelter to house up to 80 families at a newly constructed facility on Broadway between west 234th and 236th streets in Kingsbridge.

The latest shameless ploy by the DHS displays a level of haughty arrogance and sheer contempt for the community that simply boggles the mind.

Although not a member myself, I call upon you, as our next mayor, to join with the unanimous voice of Community Board 8 in the Bronx to demand the immediate resignation of the city’s commissioner and assistant commissioner of the social services department.

Furthermore, inasmuch as the practice of constructing temporary homeless shelters without prior consultation with the community is utterly unacceptable, I call upon you, Akeem, to join with me to demand the immediate resignation of the city’s administrator of the homeless services department.

Should the above-named commissioner and assistant commissioner and administrator refuse to resign, I call upon you, Akeem, to pledge to fire them on your first day in office as mayor, and to replace them with public servants who are ready, willing and able to engage in honest and straightforward dialogue with the community.

The author states he speaks on behalf of the Bronx Socialist Political Opposition.

John H. Reynolds