A reader writes:
Believe it or not, those who have been hating on NYC in the blogosphere recently, and those who have tried to defend NYC, have a lot more in common than they know: Both groups think that Manhattan is the only part of NYC that matters. This could not be further from the truth.
New York is a city of 8.3 million people and five - not one - separate boroughs. Only 1.6 million of those people live in Manhattan - the rest live in Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx, and Staten Island. Eighty percent of New Yorkers lives outside of Manhattan, yet you would never know it because the rest of the world shares a Manhattan-centric view. Did you know that Brooklyn would be the 3rd (!) largest city in the United States if it were independent? (And some experts say that 1/5 Americans can trace their roots back to Brooklyn, someway somehow!) Did you know that Queens is considered the most diverse county in the United States, with over 140 languages spoken in the borough!? Did you know that the Bronx is home to one of the greatest inner city resurgences in the country? Or that Staten Island is the birthplace of celebrities such as Christina Aguilera, Buster Poindexter, and the Wu-Tang Clan?
Criticize Manhattan all you want. I think some of the criticisms you have aired on the Dish have some validity - Manhattanites can be smug and obnoxious, cold and unfriendly, self-centered and self-absorbed. But the rest of our great city isn't like that, and it's time people stop lumping the rest of the city in with Manhattan.