Eric Adams quotes Bible for why he’s best for NYC mayor, takes dig at Maya Wiley

Exclusive: NYC mayoral candidate Eric Adams said his background as a retired NYPD officer who later pursued a career in politics makes him uniquely qualified to address the city's dueling issues of crime and policing.

The crowded race for New York City mayor has been declared the city’s most unpredictable mayoral contest in 50 years. Still, frontrunner Eric Adams is confident that he will come out on top as the Democratic nominee, and for all intents and purposes, the next mayor of Concrete Jungle.

In an exclusive interview with theGrio, Adams said his background as a retired NYPD officer who later pursued a career in politics having been elected to the New York State Senate and as Brooklyn Borough President, makes him uniquely qualified to govern over city hall and address New York City’s dueling issues of crime and police brutality and misconduct.

Eric Adams,
New York City mayoral candidate Eric Adams speaks during a Get Out the Vote rally on June 21, 2021 in the Prospect Lefferts Gardens neighborhood of Brooklyn borough in New York City. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

Adams even quoted scripture to drive home his point.

“Ester 4:14 in the Bible stated, ‘God made me for such a time like this,’ Eric Adams told theGrio. “The uniqueness of my experience will allow me to ensure we could have both those entities.”

Eric Adams’s opponents have taken him to task for his plan to “laser-focus” on crime, which in a city marred by the now unconstitutional stop-and-frisk department policy, could be interpreted as another regime of over-policing in Black and brown communities.

But Adams insists that while crime intervention is not necessarily popular among the Democratic base — especially its liberal wing — following last year’s global demonstrations against police brutality in the wake of George Floyd‘s murder, it is a necessary component to public safety.

Adams said his crime intervention plan includes targeting the proliferation of guns and gang violence.

“No one is going to come to the city as a tourist if a 3-year-old child is shot in Times Square, no one is going to ride our subway system to open our businesses if we have people with mental health illnesses pushing people on the tracks and slashing them,” said the mayoral candidate.

“And so the difference between Eric Adams and other people who are running is I know how to keep us safe based on my knowledge of public safety and I know how to rebuild the department to get the trust we need and weed out those bad officers.”

Adams even went so far as to call out his opponent Maya Wiley for her proposal to slash $1 billion from the police budget. “Maya Wiley talked about taking down the number of safety and officers, but she has private security in her community. What are we saying? Safety is for the affluent? Safety is for every New Yorker, and that is what I’m going to make sure we do,” said Adams, who appeared to be referring to a report that the neighborhood association in Wiley’s neighborhood pays for private security in the area.

NYC Mayoral candidate Maya Wiley
NYC Mayoral candidate Maya Wiley speaks during a New York Working Families Party GOTV Rally for their endorsed candidates in Fort Greene Park on June 11, 2021 in the Fort Greene neighborhood of Brooklyn borough in New York City. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

In an exclusive interview with theGrio, Wiley called out Eric Adams for his past statements on stop-and-frisk, suggesting that he was inconsistent on the matter. The two leading Black candidates in the race have sparred throughout the campaign trail over the issue of policing.

“I can’t speak for Eric, but maybe one of the things that made him feel like he had to attack is that I have been very clear and have been unwavering on this issue of stop and frisk and bringing back an anti-crime unit that, frankly, was the last vestige of a racist, unconstitutional set of practices and policies in the police department that did not prevent crime,” said Wiley. “I want to be very clear and have been very clear, [it] will not come back on my watch.”

Eric Adams emphasized that he is the best candidate to address New York City’s rising crime rate and turn the city around amid the devastating impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This is a multibillion-dollar industry. We want tourists to come back, fill out hotels. Safety means that we don’t have murals all over our community where we are dedicating walls to people who have lost their lives … being safe is the foundation and it’s a prerequisite to prosperity,” said Adams. “If it’s on Park Avenue in Manhattan or Park Place in Brooklyn, people want to feel safe. They don’t feel safe. Now we’re going to turn that around.”

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