The class watched a few scenes from West Side Story which is set in the 1960's as well as a video on a community garden by NYRP
and drew conclusions.
Today, New York City is safer and more pleasant for the inhabitants because some things have changed in the five boroughs. For example, buildings have been restored. A dump has disappeared and a community garden has been created. People can hang out with friends, relax after work, and do outdoor games. Mixing in this oasis gives people the sense of belonging to a community so that the atmosphere is more peaceful.
However the situation has not always been the same. At the very beginning of West Side Story, a helicopter flies over Manhattan and we can see the tall skyscrapers and imagine how crowded the streets must be at the peak hours. After we discover the dirty and unhealthy environment because there is garbage piled in the streets.
People from different origins were enemies. For example the Jets didn’t stand the Puerto-Ricans even if live in the same blocks. That is the reason why there was a lot of violence.
The NYC mayors had to spend money and offer community services to stop the vicious circle and bring people together. Thanks to their actions, people from different origins get on well.