Office of the Mayor
City of New York
Whereas: Healthy debate. Consistent reflection. Diverse voices. Nuanced perspectives. Institutions that hold us accountable. My administration operates on the core belief that all of these ingredients are crucial in protecting our civil society and sustaining a robust democracy. Thankfully, we are not alone. On July 6, 1865, a group of committed abolitionists launched a rousing periodical, which would elevate our country’s political discourse long into the future, with these famous words: “The Nation will not be the organ of any party, sect or body. It will, on the contrary, make an earnest effort to bring to the discussion of political and social questions a really critical spirit, and to wage war upon the vices of violence, exaggeration, and misrepresentation…” A century and a half later, the integrity and audacity of America’s oldest weekly magazine are still very much intact.
Whereas: As a global hub with strong progressive roots and a distinguished journalistic tradition, New York has served as The Nation’s home and history-making partner through Emancipation, the Great Depression, two world wars, the civil rights movement, and into the age of technology. Whether taking politicians to task, exposing the lasting effects of war, profiling our state’s progressive labor movement, highlighting the intersection of economic justice and criminal justice, critiquing the rising cost of higher education, reporting on conflicts in Syria or South Sudan or outlining strategies for keeping hope alive, The Nation continues to shed light on the disenfranchised, mobilizing its readers to articulate and reaffirm their values and to take action in the name of progress (necessarily ruffling not a few feathers along the way).
Whereas: With new and archival material by some of our nation’s most revered trailblazers and most skilled wordsmiths, including Toni Morrison, Tony Kushner, Hannah Arendt, James Baldwin, Howard Zinn, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Naomi Klein, the 150th-anniversary issue of the magazine is full of reverberating prose that showcases its legacy as a champion of the grassroots. I am delighted to seize this milestone occasion to applaud The Nation’s contributors, columnists, staff and supporters and to commend Katrina vanden Heuvel, whose 20-year tenure as editor has ushered this critical…institution into the future. In this fast-paced, media-saturated moment, The Nation is a welcome reminder that longevity is the byproduct of holding high standards and taking bold risks—and that the voice of the people will always prevail.
Now therefore, I, Bill de Blasio, Mayor of the City of New York, do hereby proclaim July 6th, 2015, in the city of New York as: “The Nation Day.”
Bill de Blasio