Seven years ago we responded to an “article” in The New York Times that asked the question, “Why can’t The Bronx be more like Brooklyn?”
Still to this day there are many that want our beautiful borough to be more like that other “B” borough and often call Mott Haven and Port Morris, “The Next Williamsburg”.
Stop the nonsense.
What good has Brooklyn’s transformation by way of gentrification actually done for the residents that were displaced and no longer live there? People throw around statistics that median incomes have risen for Brooklyn but what they forget to tell you is that it hasn’t really risen for the existing residents but that comes from the influx of gentrifiers who really didn’t and still don’t care for the culture that once existed there.
Do we want a prosperous Bronx with less crime, and higher incomes?
But we want that for our EXISTING residents and not a new wave of colonizers that will displace those who have been here and rebuilt our borough after everyone else abandoned it.
Give me bodega chopped cheese sandwich over artisanal vegan cheese shop any day.
Salsa, bachata, and merengue and dancing on Bronx summer streets any day.
Besides being the most Latino borough of NYC (fitting since we’re El Condado de la Salsa), we’re also home to the largest population of Albanians in the country, we’re the home of Little Ireland in the Northwest Bronx neighborhood of Woodlawn.
We’re also the home of Arthur Avenue in Belmont, NYC’s real Little Italy.
You see, gentrification and turning into Brooklyn will destroy all that we hold dear. We are a diverse borough and one of the most diverse counties in the country.
Are we really ready to give that up?
Again, to think that being anti-gentrification means that one is anti-progress and pro everyone being stuck in poverty or crime is ridiculous.
One can strive for the betterment of their community and economic outcomes of their fellow residents without calling for the destruction of the very fabric and cultures that make our borough so great.
We’re perfect in our own imperfections and let’s continue to improve our communities for us and not greedy developers.
So the next time you say or think that The Bronx should be more like Brooklyn, think again.