Eric Adams gets caught calling white police officers 'crackers'

Is New York City's new mayor, Eric Adams, who he says he is?

Adams ran for office as the anti-de Blasio, a non-cop-hater, a man who understands and advocates for law and order, a man who thinks "defund the police" is garbage, and who knows very well what unchecked crime does to a city, particularly its poor black citizens.

He was no cop-hater.  He had actually been one of them.  Nor was he an Ivy-League elitist.  His bio shows a true bootstrap story of an inner-city kid with no credible father around, a bit of a criminal background, some bad experiences with bad cops, who nevertheless focused on becoming a constructive contributor to society and rose to the top, one educational rung and scrappy job at a time.  His story was the story of thousands of New Yorkers, actually.

So now we have this, according to Fox News:

An unearthed video of newly-minted New York City Mayor Eric Adams shows him using a racial slur in a talk on policing.

The 2019 video shows Adams speaking to a crowd at the Harlem Business Alliance about his rise through the ranks of the New York Police Department (NYPD).

While speaking to the crowd, Adams uses a racial slur to refer to the White officers he outperformed as he grew his career as a police officer.

"Every day in the police department, I kicked those crackers' a--, man," Adams said in the video reviewed by Fox News Digital. "I was unbelievable in the police department."

"I became a sergeant, a lieutenant, and a captain, you know the story," Adams also said. "Some people oversell it trying to reinvent me, but the reality is: what I was then is who I am now."

In his defense, it wasn't the grossest thing that he could have possibly said — he was marginally focusing on the race of the white officers in order to brag about his swift rise to the top.  He was the topic, not the white officers.  It was obnoxious because he implicitly suggested that his white competition had it easy while he had it hard because he was black, and pay no attention to those affirmative action practices that helped propel him forward.  No recognition from him that among white cops, or cops of any color, there are few who come from elite backgrounds, and all must scrap to get what they get.  "Cracker" is a demeaning term that implicitly recognizes the lack of privilege of the kind of whites he'd been around, basically calling them low-class and backward, but he still seemed to suggest that there was a good ol' boys' club in the heart of ultra-blue progressive New York City that he managed to beat.  So it was negative.  Didn't think he'd be that kind of guy, but he is.

To his credit, he apologized for the 2019 remarks:

"Should not have been used. Someone asked me a question using that comment and, playing on that word, I responded in that comment," Adams said. "But clearly it is a comment that should not be used, and I apologize not only to those who heard it, but to New Yorkers because they should expect more from me and that was inappropriate."

To his credit, he didn't double down or offer up some sanctimonious justification as a lot of them do.  Some commentators attributed the use of the epithet to "family talk" among Black Americans, although the statement was not made around family.  He was a pol trying to seem like family to his Harlem audience in order to win political support, which suggests some political opportunism.  But there's probably some truth to that explanation, given that Tom Wolfe has written that in New York, a city where different ethnic groups jostle constantly, it's not uncommon to see the locals play fast and loose with the racial epithets.  That goes over badly in the snowflake age of political correctness, but it was the prevalent sentiment even in the 1990s, having lived in New York to see it.

Practicing authentic journalism, Wolfe told Rolling Stone:

I'll never forget working on the Herald Tribune the afternoon of John Kennedy's death. I was sent out along with a lot of other people to do man-on-the-street reactions. I started talking to some men who were just hanging out, who turned out to be Italian, and they already had it figured out that Kennedy had been killed by the Tongs, and then I realized that they were feeling hostile to the Chinese because the Chinese had begun to bust out of Chinatown and move into Little Italy. And the Chinese thought the mafia had done it, and the Ukrainians thought the Puerto Ricans had done it. And the Puerto Ricans thought the Jews had done it. Everybody had picked out a scapegoat. I came back to the Herald Tribune and I typed up my stuff and turned it in to the rewrite desk. Late in the day they assigned me to do the rewrite of the man-on-the-street story. So I looked through this pile of material, and mine was missing. I figured there was some kind of mistake. I had my notes, so I typed it back into the story. The next day I picked up the Herald Tribune and it was gone, all my material was gone. In fact there's nothing in there except little old ladies collapsing in front of St. Patrick's. Then I realized that, without anybody establishing a policy, one and all had decided that this was the proper moral tone for the president's assassination. It was to be grief, horror, confusion, shock and sadness, but it was not supposed to be the occasion for any petty bickering. The press assumed the moral tone of a Victorian gentleman.

That was in the 1960s, and now the Victorian Gentleman has triumphed, but we have seen lingering evidence of it, even in some of the things President Trump has been accused of saying in his long-ago, although he's pretty clean.

The New Yorkers will likely forgive Adams, especially since he said he was sorry, and the police officer's union in the city has made it clear that they know about this stuff and forgive him.

New York Police Benevolent Association president Patrick Lynch addressed the mayor's previous comments in a Friday statement, saying "whenever a controversial video of a police officer surfaces online, we ask for fairness instead of a rush to outrage."

"We will apply the same standard here. We have spoken with Mayor Adams about this video," Lynch continued. "We have spent far too many hours together in hospital emergency rooms these past few weeks, and we've worked together for decades before that."

"A few seconds of video will not define our relationship," he added. "We have a lot of work to do together to support our members on the streets."

The cops likely have made deals with Adams that satisfy them, so they don't want to wreck things, given that they still have traumatic memories of the odious Bill de Blasio and all his ideologically ingrained hatred for cops.

All it highlights is that Adams has a way of disappointing.  He disappointed with his COVID restrictions, he disappointed with his illegals voting stance, he disappointed with hiring his brother to a $200,000-a-year sinecure, and now he's been caught bad-mouthing white cops like a street tough, some of whom will be the very cops he is going to need to restore law and order in New York. 

How does he fix this, and all the other stuff?

He needs to start delivering the goods before it happens that the only stories being reported about him are negative ones.  He needs to start getting rid of crime and focusing on improving health and education.  That's the only real way to make these stories blow over into "meh" stories instead of snowball into an accumulation of them.  Right now, he's behind on the score.

Image: Office of the House speaker via Wikipedia (extracted), public domain.

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