Mayor Eric Adams oversees the NYPD, the largest law enforcement partner that the local U.S. Attorneys’ Offices have. Their mutual reliance is predicated on suitability.
By LOUIS FLORES
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for New York’s southern district is ignoring the potential for a vulnerability that may compromise the security of Government operations after a report published by POLITICO revealed that there was a man, who extensively shares in the personal life of Mayor Eric Adams (D-New York City). Mayor Adams has never acknowledged or denied being gay or bisexual. In response to that report, the New York City Hall press office would not answer questions posed by Progress New York about whether Mayor Adams was gay or living “in the closet.”
Holders of Government jobs that require security clearances undergo background checks in order to meet a suitability review that determines whether individuals will execute their office with integrity. A desired outcome seeks to avoid risks or vulnerabilities that would compromise the security of their jobs or functions, or higher Government operations.
Before nondiscrimination laws and regulations were expanded amongst Federal Agencies, the concealment of homosexuality was regarded as a “vulnerability to compromise,” because “concealment of any personal behavior that could result in exploitation, blackmail, or coercion” was viewed as the basis for “a security concern,” according to a March 1995 U.S. General Accounting Office report to Congress. Greater protections against discrimination over sexual orientation have, over time, eroded concerns about the vulnerability to compromise security. But nondiscrimination protections don’t eliminate the potential for risks or threats. The New York Police Department is the largest law enforcement partner that the two, local U.S. Attorneys’ Offices have in New York City. Because Mayor Adams oversees the NYPD, he is in a position to access important, nonpublic Government information that may impact the work of Federal law enforcement. He also regularly meets with other top Government officials, including President Joseph Biden (D).
A spokesperson for the Manhattan Federal prosecutors’ office, the dominant U.S. Attorney’s Office in New York City, declined to answer questions for this report.
Visit C’est Vrai for a sneak peak at advanced network analysis about Eric Adams . C’est Vrai is a computer-assisted Web application that provides transparency metrics about Government officials.
Ed Koch blazed the trail so that successive New York City mayors could remain closeted.
The POLITICO report established that Mayor Adams had been misrepresenting himself as a vegan, and the political fallout of the report has, thus far, solely focused on that. But the concealment of the truth about his diet triggered questions about whether Mayor Adams was concealing the truth about other aspects of his life. Mayor Adams has gone to great lengths to keep details about his private life secret, even though he has told journalists that he has a girlfriend, who lives in New Jersey. He has fathered a child out of wedlock.
Despite the change in Federal standards for suitability, the public still use character questions as a basis to challenge a politician’s authority. It’s not what Mayor Adams eats, or who he spends his life with, but the concealment of the truth that creates a potential risk. By embracing such secrecy, Mayor Adams puts himself in a situation that anybody with information about his private life might threaten his secrecy.
Apart from the risks to security, when the concealment of a top Government official’s sexuality is based on shame, other lives can be put in danger. When the vote for marriage equality failed in the New York State Legislature in 2009, one of the Legislators, who voted down the civil rights bill was then State Sen. Carl Kruger (D-Brooklyn), who was later outed as a closeted gay man upon the revelation of a corruption scheme. Then State Sen. Kruger thought nothing of denying equal marriage rights to some New Yorkers, and this prolonged state-sanctioned discrimination in New York State for an additional two years.
When Mayor Adams was reportedly arrested as a teenager at age 15, U.S. Rep. Edward Koch (D-Manhattan) was midway through in his career between a Manhattan District Leader and the 105th mayor of the City of New York. Throughout Mr. Koch’s political career, he refused to acknowledge his sexual orientation. During that time, Mr. Koch transitioned from a liberal, who supported progressive reforms in the early part of his career, to a conservative, who opposed a public housing development in Forest Hills, Queens, and who held regular meetings with President Ronald Reagan (R), the latter whose administration joked about the AIDS pandemic.
As mayor, Mr. Koch was blamed for doing a lot of damage to gay men for refusing to formulate aggressive policies to fight HIV/AIDS early in the pandemic. As mayor, Mr. Adams is looking to expand policing, which, historically, has been used to oppress the LGBTQ community. To stop such types of damage, the social movement for equal civil rights for members of the LGBTQ community has often resorted to outing closeted politicians. In the face of the political duplicity created by closeted politicians, then U.S. Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), an out Federal Legislator, once said, “[Y]ou have a right to privacy, but not a right to hypocrisy.”
- Security Clearances : Consideration of Sexual Orientation in the Clearance Process (March 1995) [U.S. General Accounting Office]
- Mayor Eric Adams refuses to admit or deny that he’s gay after a POLITICO report detailed a close relationship he has with another man [Progress New York]
- New York mayor holds court in swanky restaurant alongside friend with checkered past [POLITICO]
- Ed Koch : 12 Years as Mayor, A Lifetime in the Closet (Feb. 2013) [Gay City News]
- FBI Settles Gay Agent’s Suit, Vows Reforms (Dec. 1993) [The Los Angeles Times]