lBLACK LIVES MATTER l de Blasio finally gets things right!


But he can do even more

New York City mayor, Bill de Blasio. has taken his lumps lately.

New York Magazine‘s July 5 edition’s cover was “How the Mayor Lost the City.”

The accompanying article was entitled, “Everybody Hates Bill – The mayor who thought he deserved to be in the White House suddenly can’t even manage City Hall.”

New York went on to say, “Weeks into the George Floyd protests, Mayor de Blasio has alienated his constituents, the police, and even his own staff,” going on, “the mayor, who stormed into office in 2014 promising to make the city more equitable and fair and who was buoyed by dissatisfaction with the liberal status quo, seemed exposed and out of touch. It began even before this recent spate of protests, as the police began enforcing social-distancing guidelines and 90 percent of those arrested were Black or Latino. Social media was awash in images of crowded parks in white neighborhoods of Manhattan, where friendly police officers handed out masks to those who didn’t have them, while a young Black mother was pinned to the ground in a Brooklyn subway station after cops attempted to get her to cover her face and, on the Lower East Side, an officer was videotaped with his knee on the neck of an African-American man for the crime of failing to keep six feet apart.”

And then, he did something right.

He authorized the painting of one block of Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, between 56th and 57th streets with the following mural:


de Blasio even rolled up his sleeves and painted a bit of the mural, too, clad in a mask and flanked by civil rights leader, the Rev. Al Sharpton.

Mayor Bill de Blasio with Rev. Al Sharpton to his right

“President Trump said we would be denigrating the luxury of Fifth Avenue. Let me tell you: we’re not denigrating anything, we are liberating Fifth Avenue, we are uplifting Fifth Avenue,” de Blasio said on Thursday in response to Trump’s tweet last week criticizing de Blasio for “denigrating” the area.

Now, for those of you who haven’t been to NYC recently, the 700 block of Fifth Avenue is the block where Trump Tower is. The mural was positioned on the street so that if you’re in the Trump Tower looking out any Fifth Avenue facing window, you will see it. It is, perhaps, the first step in the “redemption of Bill de Blasio.”

I would suggest that there is one more thing that Mayor de Blasio should do to continue his redemption – rename the 700 block of Fifth Avenue, the block that now has “Black Lives Matter” painted in the center of the street right in front of Trump Tower. And the name he should authorize? “Barack Hussein Obama Way!” And with that simple stroke of a pen, all mail going to Trump Tower will forever be addressed, not to 725 5th Ave, New York, NY 10022, but to 725 Barack Hussein Obama Way, New York, NY 10022.

Isn’t that special!

Published by Ted Block

Ted Block is a veteran “Mad Man,” having spent 45+ years in the advertising industry. During his career, he was media director of several advertising agencies, including Benton & Bowles in New York and Foote, Cone and Belding in San Francisco; account management director on clients as varied as Clorox, Levi’s and the California Raisin Advisory Board (yes, Ted was responsible for the California Dancing Raisins campaign); and regional director for Asia based in Tokyo for Foote, Cone where he was also the founding president of FCB’s Japanese operations. Ted holds a Bachelor’s degree in communications from Queens College and, before starting in advertising, served on active duty as an officer on USS McCloy (DE-1038) in the U.S. Navy. Besides writing Around the Block, Ted is also a guest columnist for the Palm Beach Post.

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