Author Archive

A Constituency Of None

Written by Alexis Grenell on . Posted in Opinion

The First Amendment is clear that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” yet the practical separation between church and state is anything but. Public life is saturated with references to God, from the courts to the Pledge of Allegiance. Right or wrong, candidates are required to negotiate through the religious beliefs of others and account for their own. In 1954 the phrase “under God” was added to the Pledge in… [More]

The Scorsese of Sexual Harassment

Written by Alexis Grenell on . Posted in Opinion

Dennis Gabryszak is truly the Scorsese of sexual harassment. In a grainy cell phone video, the disgraced former assemblyman appears to be either vacating his bowels, masturbating or simulating receiving oral sex. At one point he asks, “Is this what you wanted?” in the creepy warble of a man who wears a leather jacket to relieve himself. It’s a challenge to decide what’s most horrifying about the film, to say nothing of his other alleged misconduct. But Gabryszak doesn’t get… [More]

Zoning In: De Blasio’s Vision for Affordable Housing

Written by Alexis Grenell on . Posted in Opinion

Since he became mayor-elect, Bill de Blasio’s oft-criticized progressivism has met with increased cries of caution from editorial boards, industry and others concerned about fiscal policy in the post-Bloomberg era. While the Bloomberg administration sometimes seemed to emphasize progress for the private sector, de Blasio’s progressivism dares to challenge the primacy of supply side economics to suggest people before profits. Alexis Grenell (Illustration Credit: Lisanne Gagnon) To that end, de Blasio’s plan to create 50,000 units of affordable housing through… [More]

The Tokenization Of Tish James

Written by Alexis Grenell on . Posted in Daily, Features, Opinion

Alexis Grenell
(Illustration Credit: Lisanne Gagnon) Thanks to the election of Letitia James as the Democratic nominee for public advocate, the career prospects of white men are on the rise. And it’s just in the nick of time. With nearly every citywide office and all statewide offices currently in their possession, white males need all the help they can get. So it makes perfect sense that James’ victory now clears the way for a continuation of the status quo. Having paid lip service to women and… [More]

Lhota Must Be His Own Man

Written by Alexis Grenell on . Posted in Opinion

The result of the Democratic primary was shocking, not because Bill de Blasio won, but because it represented a referendum on the limits of Michael Bloomberg’s money and influence. Despite the mayor’s open disdain for de Blasio’s campaign and desperate efforts to elect Christine Quinn, voters had the last word over a man more accustomed to manipulating systems of democracy than conforming to them. De Blasio might not have outperformed expectations quite so dramatically, and avoided a runoff, had the… [More]

Anti-Spitzer Attacks Patronize Prostitutes

Written by Alexis Grenell on . Posted in Opinion

Just days after jumping into the race for New York City comptroller, Eliot Spitzer was interviewed by Susan Arbetter, who asked him: “You solicited prostitution. Does your candidacy send a positive message to women who no longer want to be seen as objects?” Although provocative, the question assumes an attitude about sex work as inherently degrading to women. The theme has been repeated by Spitzer’s opponent, Scott Stringer, and his supporters, as well as by the National Organization for Women.… [More]

The Gospel of Anthony Weiner

Written by Alexis Grenell on . Posted in Opinion

In the early weeks of his re-entry campaign into public life, Anthony Weiner has asked for something as humble as it is chutzpadik: a second chance. The concept of a second chance is deeply rooted in the religious notion of redemption; a belief that is ingrained in American politics, and encapsulated by F. Scott Fitzgerald’s oft-misquoted line: “I once thought that there were no second acts in American lives.” Alexis Grenell (Illustration Credit: Lisanne Gagnon) But of course, the nation’s… [More]

Crimes and Misdemeanors

Written by Alexis Grenell on . Posted in Campaigns/Elections, Daily, Features, Government Operations, Opinion, Trials/Hearings

We repeatedly see policies and proposals put forth with no rational basis aside from personal gain. U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara may have exposed some of the more egregious examples of political corruption in the recent round of arrests, but in reality there are other pervasive and subtle forms of self-dealing which are doing long-term damage to the public interest.… [More]