It turns out that even Michael Bloomberg is not that tone deaf. Per the Wall Street Journal:
Mayor Michael Bloomberg and organizers of New York City Marathon cancelled the race Friday amid growing concerns that holding the event would divert resources from cleanup efforts in the wake of superstorm Sandy.
Workers assemble the finish line for the New York City Marathon on Sunday.
Mr. Bloomberg had said as recently as early Friday afternoon that the marathon, scheduled to start Sunday morning, would go on and serve as a demonstration that the city was recovering from the storm and moving forward.
But other elected officials from around the city said holding it so soon after a major storm would be an insult to hard-hit residents still cleaning up and worried that it would get in the way of recovering from a storm that killed at least 41 people in New York City alone.
Or is he? Note the language of his explanation:
“We would not want a cloud to hang over the race or its participants, and so we have decided to cancel it,” Mr. Bloomberg and the organizers said in a joint news release. “We cannot allow a controversy over an athletic event—even one as meaningful as this—to distract attention away from all the critically important work that is being done to recover from the storm and get our city back on track.”
I see. It’s not that holding a marathon in such circumstances would be a bad and tasteless idea per se, but that now the people have gone and complained about it they’ve made holding the race impossible. If only, as Stephanie Cutter might say, that damn American public didn’t go and politicize everything.