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Immediate Blowback on Hochul’s NYC Subway Plan to Ease Fears.

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Governor Kathy Hochul’s decision to deploy the National Guard and State Police in the New York City subway system to address fears of crime has sparked immediate backlash from various corners just 24 hours after the announcement. Critics from both the left and the center have raised concerns about the militarization of the response and the potential negative impact on public perception.

Public Advocate Jumaane N. Williams warned that the plan could criminalize the public on public transit, while Assemblywoman Emily Gallagher criticized it as a ham-fisted and authoritarian response that could validate GOP propaganda. Centrists also expressed worry that the presence of armed troops might actually make people feel less safe.

Even top brass from the New York Police Department, including Chief of Patrol John Chell, took issue with the deployment. Chief Chell pointed out that transit crime had already been declining due to increased police presence and questioned the need for outside law enforcement assistance. He also suggested that state leaders should focus on repealing or overhauling criminal justice laws instead.

The rare public disagreement between the Police Department and political leaders highlighted the divisions within New York as it grapples with a pandemic-related crime surge. Mayor Eric Adams, who had requested more funding for police overtime to increase underground presence, reportedly disagreed with Governor Hochul’s approach and skipped the announcement.

Governor Hochul defended her plan as a way to reassure New Yorkers of their safety and send a strong message ahead of upcoming elections. The move comes as the city faces a spike in subway crime and violent incidents that threaten the region’s economic recovery.

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While some subway riders and moderate Democrats supported the plan, critics raised concerns about civil liberties and questioned its effectiveness. Even Republicans, who typically advocate for more policing, remained skeptical of the deployment.

Overall, Governor Hochul’s subway plan has sparked intense debate and highlighted the complexities of addressing crime in a major metropolitan area. The disagreements underscore the challenges of balancing public safety with civil liberties and political considerations.

The immediate blowback to Governor Kathy Hochul’s decision to deploy the National Guard and State Police in the New York City subway system to address fears of crime underscores the complexities of addressing public safety in a major metropolitan area. Just 24 hours after the announcement, critics from various corners, including both the left and the center, have raised concerns about the plan’s potential impact on public perception and civil liberties.

While some subway riders and moderate Democrats have expressed support for the plan, others have questioned its effectiveness and raised concerns about the militarization of the response. The rare public disagreement between the New York Police Department and political leaders like Governor Hochul highlights the challenges of balancing public safety with civil liberties and political considerations.

Overall, the intense criticism of Governor Hochul’s subway plan underscores the need for a nuanced approach to addressing crime in New York City and highlights the ongoing debate surrounding law enforcement and public safety in urban environments.

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Black couple overcomes racism to rent to Chinese family, who show gratitude by paying rent.

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Decades ago, in the early 1900s, racism and discriminatory housing practices plagued the town of Coronado, barring many individuals from living in certain neighborhoods based on their race. In the midst of this oppressive era, an inspiring story of resilience and generosity unfolded between two families — the Thompsons, a Black couple, and the Dongs, a Chinese family.

Gus and Emma Thompson, who were among the few Black families to own property in Coronado before racial restrictions took hold, defied the norms of the time by renting their house to the Dong family. Lloyd Dong Sr., a Chinese immigrant, and his wife found solace in the Thompsons’ willingness to offer them a place to call home despite the racist barriers they faced.

Fast forward 85 years later, the sons of Lloyd Dong Sr., Ron Dong, and Lloyd Dong Jr., have decided to pay forward the kindness shown to their family by donating $5 million from the sale of the house they eventually owned to San Diego State University’s Black Resource Center. This generous gift will help expand scholarships for Black students and fund renovations at the center, creating a lasting impact on the community.

Exterior view of a single-story home

The Dongs’ family house in Coronado, originally the home of the Thompsons.

(Courtesy of Janice Dong)

This heartwarming tale of intergenerational gratitude highlights the resilience and spirit of unity that transcends racial boundaries. Brandon Gamble, the director of the Black Resource Center, expressed the profound impact of this donation on the community, emphasizing the importance of stories that challenge racism and foster a sense of camaraderie.

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Reflecting on the legacy of his father and the Thompsons, Ron Dong shared, “That was the big plus for our family, because it has made all the difference for us.” The intertwined histories of the Thompson and Dong families serve as a testament to the power of empathy and solidarity in the face of adversity.

Gus Thompson’s journey from slavery to becoming a respected community leader in Coronado, coupled with Emma Thompson’s advocacy for civil rights, exemplifies the resilience and determination of marginalized communities to thrive in the face of oppression.

Gus Thompson in 1947.

Gus Thompson in 1947.

(Norman Baynard Collection / San Diego History Center)

The legacy of allyship and support exemplified by the Thompsons extends to their willingness to assist Asian Americans facing similar discriminatory practices. This act of solidarity echoes the sentiment that in times of oppression, helping others regardless of race is not just a gesture but a necessity.

As the Dong family embraced their new home in Coronado, overcoming discrimination and forging their path to homeownership, they carried forward the spirit of resilience and unity shown to them by the Thompsons. The bond between these two families serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration in a society marred with division and prejudice.

The Hotel del Coronado, a Victorian-style beach resort outside San Diego, and tent city on the beach, 1908.

The Hotel del Coronado, a Victorian-style beach resort outside San Diego, and a tent city on the beach, 1908.

(Smith Collection / Gado / Getty Images)

The resilience and determination displayed by the Dong family in the face of discrimination, coupled with their unwavering commitment to education and community upliftment, exemplify the triumph of the human spirit over adversity. The decision to give back to the community through education underscores the transformative power of generosity and empathy in creating a more inclusive and equitable society.

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As the Dongs’ generous donation paves the way for future generations to access educational opportunities and resources, their story serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration for all who strive to overcome adversity and champion unity in the face of division.

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