Looking outside the box

Most of the TV shows or movies shot in New York depict New Yorkers in a way that makes an out-of-towner like me feel apprehensive about going to NYC, let alone live in it. There are stories about muggers & sexual predators, workaholics in business suits, consumers who spend so much on Blahnik & Choo and make anyone who can’t afford them feel truly inferior.

True. NYPD has a lot of work cut out for them.

True. New Yorkers work very hard to buy what they want.

But what out-of-towners don’t see on TV or in the movies are men who give up their seats in the subway or bus for the elderly; a shopper holding the door and not just leaving it to slam on somebody’s face; a teenager returning something that was dropped by the person in front of him; a woman who greets her neighbor as they run into each other in the supermarket aisle.

Once in a while, I get a glimpse of the New York that’s outside the stereotype placed by society. It still surprises me whenever I see a man in a business suit give up his seat in the subway or train for an elderly or a middle-aged woman. I forget sometimes that New Yorkers are human, too. And humans are innately kind.

Even with the negativity all around us, there’s still kindness left in this world. No matter how bad things get, a small act of kindness becomes a beacon of hope for peace.

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