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September 18, 2013

"Welcome To Fear City..." - A Look Into The World That Was NYC In The 70s/80s

As a proud, native NYer I often take a step back and enjoy how much my city has to offer. It is a great place to be on a regular basis. But as a 34 year old, I do remember when things were not so fantastic. Manhattan always had some attractions and great places to see, but it was quite seedy and crime ridden back in the 70s and early 80s. Gone was the golden era of Mad Men's 50s & 60s... the 70s ushered in an era of poverty, crime and utter disarray in the borough of Manhattan. But the best part about looking back at this down time in my city's history has to be that even the city's own unions were not above telling people how bad it was here! Yup, you read that right... the police, firefighters, and other civil service unions were frequently publishing and distributing pamphlets extolling the negativity of the city and teaching tourists how to stay safe. Yup, the same ladies and gentleman that are in charge with keeping everyone safe were telling people that the safest way to visit NY was to STAY THE F@%K OUT OF NY!!! This is crazy to me, but is directly correlated to the fact that the local government in NY was trying to lay off and underpay these civil servants, despite the fact that the cities state of affairs at the time definitely called for them to be in full force! So these unions decided the only way for them to be appreciated was to draw attention to how bad the conditions already were here in NY... and especially how bad it would get if their numbers were reduced. This a look at the type of pamphlets they were handing out... pretty out there, no? Doesn't sound like the cultural center that I know and love NY to be. Check out just how rough it was back in the day in NYC after the jump. Thanks to The Gothamist for a great article that provided me with this pamphlet....

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