New York City Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott truly is the anti-Cathie Black.
Whereas Black's tenure as chancellor involved making tasteless Sophie's Choice jokes, Walcott has been busy keeping the NYPD on its toes, making "healthy soymilk-based banana-flavored waffles" for kids at P.S. 10, and dancing with first-graders. Today, he even broke up a fight!
While Walcott spoke at Mayor Bloomberg's painful budget briefing this morning, two cameramen, jockeying for position, exchanged some not-so-nice words.
In particular, two reporters – Dave Evans of WABC-Channel 7 and blogger Rafael Martinez Alequin – exchanged words as they fought for space.
When Walcott finished speaking, the two men resumed their angry discussion, with Evans – ABC’s political correspondent -- telling Alequin. “Don’t touch me. Don’t touch me like that again, or I’ll flatten you,” according to witnesses.
Alequin responded by calling Evans a “f---ing f----t,” witnesses said.
At this point Evans lunged at Alequin but Walcott stepped in and held the two apart. Even as they continued to yell and push towards each other, Walcott's cool-head prevailed and he stood his ground, preventing the two from coming to blows. The chancellor then took Evans further inside City Hall to calm him down while Alequin left the rotunda, according to the Daily News.
Gothamist has it that NY1 reporter Lindsay Christ tweeted, "There are tons of security guards around but it was the Chancellor who moved right in and got in the middle of the fight. He got shoved hard."
Looks like Walcott really might be the peacemaker he's made out to be.
According to the Daily News, Alequin later defended his actions, regretting only that he had said "that word" to Evans.