I should start by saying that never in my 4 years of living in Brooklyn, have I ever attended, or even considered attending, a local debate. Like the majority of Brooklynites, or, let’s be honest, people in general, (only 1 in 5 registered voters turned out in 2009), I have never gotten involved in local politics.
This could get confusing… Stephen Levin and Stephen Pierson are going head to head at the Polish Slavic Center (176 Java St) tonight, Wednesday August 21, 2013 (7-8:30pm) for an epic STEPHEN VS. STEPHEN showdown.
FYI – Stephen Levin is our Council Member for the City Council District 33 (since 2009), which covers Greenpoint, Brooklyn Heights, Dumbo, Boerum Hill, and parts of Williamsburg and Bed Stuy. His interests include transportation safety, education initiatives, and fighting against the effects of lead poisoning (he started his career by running a program for children with lead poisoning in Bushwick).
But Stephen L might have some serious competition from Stephen P, who is getting a lot of buzz lately for being young, hip and according to the NY Times, expertly dressed. Times reporter, Gina Bellafonte, wrote back in April, that Pierson “looks like modern Brooklyn.” What does modern Brooklyn look like?
When I met him for breakfast last week he was wearing low-slung skinny jeans, untied desert boots and a snug wool coat and carried with him another accessory of the moment — his 2-year-old daughter’s lunch. To support himself several years ago while he was writing a novel, he started to play poker and turned out to have a talent for it.
So this guy has written a novel, fathered a 2-year old daughter (so trendy right now), and wears tailored wool? But, wait, there’s more. He also started an art and literary magazine called Canteen, featuring contributors with tattoos (thanks NY Times, for pointing that out). AND he developed Canteen Arts, an after-school program for teens in Harlem. Conclusion? He’d do really well on eHarmony.
The two Stephens have a lot in common. They both went to Brown. They’re both in their 30’s. They’re both liberal Democrats. And they’re both incredibly white in appearance.
But the major difference lies in their allegiances. While Levin used to serve as Vito Lopez’s chief of staff (and is seen by some as Lopez’s political puppet), Pierson has voiced his opposition, criticizing Levin for never publicly condemning Lopez’s alleged sexual harassment of female staff members. Pierson even went so far as to tell the NY Observer that he believes Lopez to be”the most vile politician in Brooklyn politics.”
The Stephens have also managed to secure the alliances of two rivaling hassidic groups in Williamsburg. This could get ugly.
This debate is sure to have it all: angry Hassids, sex scandals, promising young white men, AND a Brooklyn fashion showdown. Sounds like a good pitch for a Williamsburg nightclub. But, let’s take a moment to address the real question at hand–which Stephen is the most eligible bachelor? The sweater-wearing, sensitive, artsy, Stephen P, or the classic navy suit sporting, non-profit poster boy, Stephen L? You decide, Brooklyn.