Thursday’s Headlines: Welcome to the Mayoral Race, Eric Adams Edition

Mayoral candidate and Brooklyn Beep Eric Adams hands out literature in the subway. File Photo
Mayoral candidate and Brooklyn Beep Eric Adams hands out literature in the subway. File Photo

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams announced his run for mayor on Wednesday with a poignant biographical video that focused tightly on a message of police reform and public safety. The campaign advertisement tied vignettes from Adams’s boyhood growing up Black and poor in South Jamaica — as teens, he and his brother were arrested and beaten by police — with his decision to join the NYPD and fight brutality from within it.

Adams sought to position himself as a strong Black voice on public safety, though perhaps as a law-and-order voice and certainly not a “Defund” voice like others in the race. “The fight can’t only be in the streets; it must be also in the agencies that patrol the streets. That is how we change policing,” he says in the video — segueing to the uptick in gang shootings. 

Left unsaid was Adams’s position on another pressing public-safety question: traffic violence (and it didn’t help that Adams touted endorsements from car-loving Council Members Daneek Miller and Laurie Cumbo, and also was preparing to meet on Thursday with a clergy group headed by former Council Member [and unrepentant homophobe] Ruben Diaz Sr.).

But we expect that the beep, himself a cyclist, will (like Carlos Menchaca and, with hope, unlike placard user Maya Wiley) take up the issue soon when he and his rivals return Streetsblog’s mayoral candidate questionnaire (hint, hint). Until then, here’s the rest of Wednesday’s news:

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Edwin Ajacalon's uncle, Eduardo Vicente, broke down before he could speak at last night's vigil. Photo: Dave Colon

Brooklyn Electeds Pay Tribute to Edwin Ajacalon and Call on Albany to Prevent Deadly Speeding

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At a vigil last night, elected officials and street safety advocates paid tribute to Edwin Ajacalon, the 14-year-old from Guatemala who was killed by a teenage driver in Brooklyn Saturday night. Calling Ajacalon an "all-American boy" and "a vital thread in the beautiful tapestry that is New York City," they pressed for street safety improvements and a culture change among drivers after yet another death of a cyclist, the 20th in 2017.

With Mark-Viverito as Speaker, Who Will Chair Transportation Committee?

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Almost immediately after Melissa Mark-Viverito was elected city council speaker yesterday, she formed the council’s rules committee, installing her progressive caucus co-leader Brad Lander as its chair. Lander, like Mark-Viverito a livable streets stalwart who has also championed overhauling many of the council’s procedures, is now in a prime position to help pick who will […]

This is How State Senator Eric Adams Celebrates Bike Month?

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Sources say that first-term Brooklyn State Senator Eric Adams has delivered a lengthy letter to Department of Transportation Acting Commissioner Judith Bergtraum expressing opposition to DOT’s 9th Street traffic safety and bike lane plan. Though the Senator, a former cop, has no urban planning or traffic engineering background, he questions DOT’s assertion that its plan […]