I’ve been wondering lately how and when most of Manhattan became one social class. It didn’t use to be that way at all. There was so much diversity that it was dizzying at times. One main block would be upscale, say Broadway, and then just one cross town block away, things could be remarkably different. Amsterdam and Columbus Avenues on the Upper Westside in the 1970’s and 80’s were very rich culturally. Bodegas, delicatessens, Irish pubs and Italian restaurants selling fresh pesto and homemade pasta were a part of many blocks. People with low incomes lived in neighborhoods with millionaires, and we all had a common living room…the street.
This was the way it was in The Villages East and West too, and on the Upper, Upper Eastside called Yorktown. The last statistics report that Manhattan is severely stratified…poor people and rich people…and more rich people. The article in the New York Times I read said that New York City, especially Manhattan, replicates the culture of a third world country.
In the section of the New Testament called the Beatitudes, Jesus teaches the paradoxical truths that really undergird his philosophy. He says that the blessed are the poor, the meek, and others who probably can’t afford to live in Manhattan these days.
At Sanctuary NYC we are very conscious of these inequities, and make a real effort to bring a dialogue to the table about food equity, human rights, civil rights, and we endeavor to learn how we might be part of a more just world.
We hope you will join us for one of the “Hear It out” new play series, for next weekend’s triple header Friday night choir concert, Saturday night screening of “Call Me Kuchu’ at the Quad Cinema on 13th St, and a Sunday discussion about global human rights the following Sunday.
We will be contemplating the theme,”Who Is Your Neighbor?” this week, and we look forward to seeing or meeting you soon.
Be the change.
We love to see your face.