Remember: Brooklyn is a Borough, Not a Brand

Since tonight’s Democratic debate is in my old neighborhood, I just wanted to write a quick post about the state of Brooklyn.

Despite what HBO, Comedy Central, Fox, CBS, Urban Outfitters, American Apparel, the NBA, Taylor Swift, et al. try to make you think, Brooklyn is not a brand. It’s a borough first and foremost, and a big one. Huge, actually! More New Yorkers – over 2.5 million of them – call Brooklyn home than anywhere else in NYC. On its own it is a larger city than Houston, and is only one-seventh of the size. And every one of its inhabitants brings his or her own personal history, struggle, triumph, artistry, intellect, sadness, and beauty to one specific splotch of land on the globe, giving Kings County that unique, unidentifiable air of independence through togetherness. Brooklyn is people.

CNN Brooklyn debate

So when CNN takes over some empty garage space or whatever in the Navy Yard tonight to host the “Brooklyn Democratic Debate” (which should have just been called the New York Debate as there are no other debates scheduled in the state before the convention, but ok, it’s FINE), just remember: Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are both out-of-touch politicians that spent an insane amount of time and money this past week trying too hard to convince New Yorkers that they are still New Yorkers, too. (Harder than any NY transplant, six months in, that you unfortunately found yourself talking to at a cocktail party. You know who I am talking about.)

Yet I’ll watch. Maybe even live tweet it. We’ll all watch. As people, independently but together. That’s the Brooklyn way.

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