My friend Robin, a Brooklyn girl through and through, called me today from her home in L.A. to see how I had weathered the storm. Thank goodness, we had no damage and only suffered through the relative inconvenience of having no power for four days. Compared to what some in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and New Jersey lost, I'm one of the lucky ones.
I reminded her that Springsteen, Bon Jovi and Billy Joel headlined the fundraiser on NBC. Others have, I'm sure, offered financial help, even if they haven't publicized it. And some, like Barbara Walters, George Stephanapolous and Diane Sawyer did publicize their donations -- which I feel diminishes the act of giving -- but they gave, nonetheless. (Perhaps ABC pushed the word out, so their stars would look good after NBC hosted the on-air fundraiser.)
But Robin reminded me that one prominent New Yorker -- who NEVER forgets to publicize anything he does -- was silent and invisible after our ordeal here. Where, she asked, was Donald Trump, who has made his riches from real estate in New York and also in Atlantic City. His wealth, in fact, came largely from his father, who owned many apartment buildings in Queens -- one of the harder-hit boroughs. We haven't heard a word about any money from Trump to help his fellow New Yorkers.
Instead, it seems, he's been busy touting his friendship with Mitt Romney and then, following the election, crying like a spoiled baby who didn't get his way. For a man who had been considering a run for the nation's top office, he has not acted Presidential or even like a responsible leader by making crazy statements like "the election is a sham and a travesty" or calling for "a revolution in this country."
He took his crazy tweets down after there was a public outrage, but still... he made these and other divisive statements publicly.
When NBC's Brian Williams called him out for this, he started name-calling and compared the ratings for his "Apprentice" show to Williams' newscast, saying, "Wouldn't you love to have my ratings?"
Trump would better serve his own reputation and his brand if he reached out to help the get the city that made him rich through the aftermath of the hurricane. I've heard from many people who would never choose to live in a building bearing his name, because he has done such damage to his name. To many, rather than representing luxury and elegance, Trump represents tackiness and hucksterism.
By the way, I do agree that the Electoral College system is antiquated and needs to be replaced by a simple popular vote. But calling for a revolution is not the way for a supposed leader to try to bring about change.