New York City Mayor Eric Adams and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) are in a heated dispute over the death of Jordan Neely, a schizophrenic homeless man who had over 40 arrests and suffered a mental breakdown on a subway. Neely was choked out by a former Marine who was trying to subdue him, and he ultimately died as a result of the chokehold. While some believe that the chokehold was justified as Neely was allegedly threatening other passengers on the subway, others argue that it was excessive force.
Mayor Adams has been cautious in his comments on the matter, likely due to the previous Black Lives Matter riots that devastated New York City in 2020. He has prioritized getting mental health care for those who need it, but Ocasio-Cortez disagrees, calling any further policing efforts a “militarization” of the police force.
According to the Daily Wire:
Witnesses said Neely embarked on an aggressive rant in a subway train on Monday afternoon, moving erratically and allegedly screaming that he did not care if he went to jail, according to video footage obtained by freelance journalist Juan Alberto Vazquez and a report from the New York Post. Another unnamed passenger, who sources said is a Marine veteran, placed Neely in a chokehold with the help of at least one other passenger. The New York City medical examiner confirmed on Wednesday that Neely’s cause of death was a “chokehold.”
Adams remarked in a statement that the death of Neely underscores the need to assist unwell homeless people rather than permitting them to remain on the streets. “Any loss of life is tragic. There’s a lot we don’t know about what happened here, so I’m going to refrain from commenting further,” he said. “I need all elected officials and advocacy groups to join us in prioritizing getting people the care they need and not just allowing them to languish.”
Ocasio-Cortez emphatically disagreed with the statement on social media and countered that “not being able to clearly condemn a public murder because the victim was of a social status some would deem ‘too low’ to care about.” She said Adams had “cut the very services that could have helped him” and said in another social media post that Neely was “houseless and crying for food in a time when the city is raising rents and stripping services to militarize itself.”
At a time when crime rates are on the rise in many major cities in the United States, subway attacks have become a regular occurrence in New York City. However, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) has taken a stance on a recent incident that has been controversial. Ocasio-Cortez is facing criticism for removing any nuance from the story and framing it as if a black homeless man was killed for no reason. Some have accused her of refusing to acknowledge that his death was not the intended outcome of the attacker’s actions.