American Cities Take Double-Barreled Hit; How Will They Look in the Future?

Rod Dreher of The American Conservative wrote a post titled “The iPad Thieves,” which began with video of a Muslim-immigrant-owned computer store in Minneapolis being looted…before concluding with a look at the riots and looting in Manhattan. Dreher concluded, “When I moved to New York City in 1998, it was so, so common to hear people say that Rudy Giuliani, who had been elected in 1994, had made such a difference in the life of the city. ‘You can’t imagine what it was like before,’ they would say. That was a long time ago. Now, it’s back to the 1980s.”

(Ed Driscoll – PJ Media) The June issue of Commentary, likely assembled in early-to-mid-May, contained an article written by John Podhoretz and illustrated by Daniel Rose headlined “The Empty City.”…

Podhoretz selected ten eerie photos of a depopulated Manhattan shot by Rose, whom Podhoretz describes as “a businessman and amateur photographer whose stunning images you are seeing here and on our cover, used the time to document this unnerving reality:”

And it turns out it is never not unnerving to be in these deserted urban Bryce Canyons, these areas marked by the absence of bustle and the whistling of the wind uninterrupted by a mass of human bodies, no matter how many walks you take through them. Another pop-culture reference, this one from Bill Murray trapped in his perpetual Groundhog Day, delivering the existential weather report from his endless purgatory: “It’s gonna be cold, it’s gonna be gray, and it’s gonna last you for the rest of your life.”

Or until Monday, June the 1st, when a different type of Groundhog Day may have begun for New Yorkers: “The Empty City” repopulated itself – with a massive amount of rioters and looters, all-but-endorsed by a leftist mayor who not only refused to call in the National Guard, but whose own daughter was arrested during a Manhattan protest the previous Saturday. Notice that the photos collated for Podhoretz’s article show few buildings boarded up, demonstrating that business owners still believed that the police would protect them. As Reason’s Nick Gillespie wrote on Tuesday at Spectator USA, “Until a few nights ago, at least Manhattan was safe. You might not see anyone else on the street, but you didn’t feel worried, either. Stores were closed, but their windows weren’t covered in plywood:”  View article →


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