NYC: Boarded Up Again

*To see real-time footage of NYC, check out my Instagram stories: @beauty.beyond.bones*

Here we are: the day before the election. I’m sitting in my Manhattan apartment right now, overlooking the Empire State Building and the streets of Greenwich Village, and it’s one of those eerily beautiful days. The sun is shining brilliantly, but on the horizon, behind the Empire State Building’s spire, the clouds are super dark, ominous, and puffy. The wind is whipping, causing my prewar windows to rattle, as it appears, an afternoon thunderstorm is looming.

It’s as though Mother Nature is mimicking the state of the world with the election less than 24 hours away.

I was jogging this morning through the streets of midtown and downtown, and it was a bit of a surreal experience. A bit of “deja vu” if I actually believed in that sort of thing.

But it was an eerie sight. Because I’d say that 75% of the stores have all boarded up their windows in preparation for unrest at the election results. The sight took me back to June when NYC literally was ablaze with rioting and looting. I remember sitting in front of my window, in lockdown mode, watching as looters ran down the street below. Never again, I hoped. And sadly, here we are, it appears, yet again.

Just the past weekend, rioting exploded in our neighboring city, Philadelphia – to the point where the National Guard was deployed. Fifty-seven officers have been injured, and if that’s any indication of what’s to come after the election, I am highly concerned.

And New York City, still rebuilding after the previous bout of rioting and looting — is taking no chances, this time around. Macy’s Gucci, Bed Bath & Beyond, Staples, CVS, restaurants, high end and other retailers, bodegas – have all boarded up, in the hopes of fending off the angry mobs, come election night.

And jogging home, I couldn’t help but think, “Is this what we’ve come to?”


Is this what our nation has become? Our candidate doesn’t get chosen, so we take to the streets and riot because we didn’t get our way?! That is just wrong on so many levels. See

I just have to believe that we’re better than that. That we’ve got more of a moral backbone and spirit of cooperation than to raise fist and flame against our fellow Americans, all because of a difference in political ideology.

I seriously pray that all of this preemptive boarding up of businesses is in vain. And that our country can accept whomever is elected tomorrow. Because the truth is: at the end of the day…we are all just that: fellow Americans.

We’re neighbors, family, friends, co-workers, community members, — and at the end of the day, that’s really what matters. Not what side of the political aisle we may fall.

That’s one of the most important lessons I’ve learned living in NYC – arguably the bluest of the “blue” cities. It’s that at the end of the day, politics simply doesn’t matter. Not when it comes to relationships.

Because behind every vote – one way or the other – is a person. A person with dignity. A soul. A heart. And a will to do what they think is good for the world. Just like me and you. And if we spend all our time villainizing “the other” because of what we assume they believe or think — or if we spend all our time focusing on what makes us different, then we miss out on the opportunity to love them. We miss out on all the good things that get filtered out when we fixate on the differences.

This election has torn this country apart at the seams. Literally. Look at NYC. Look at Philly. Look at Seattle. Look at your community.

Tomorrow night (God willing), there will be a “winner” and a “loser.” But if we respond in the way NYC is preparing for, then we all lose.

Are there great issues at stake? Yes. Are there matters of great importance that could be gravely impacted by the election of one candidate verses the other? Absolutely.

But people matter over policies. And I pray that, come tomorrow night, when all is said and done…we can remember that.

Choose light over dark. Always.

“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5


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165 responses to “NYC: Boarded Up Again”

    • Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I do pray that goodness wins tomorrow. Especially for the protection of life in the womb! Hugs and love xox

      • AP Fact Check:

        Michelle Obama assailed President Donald Trump for ripping migrant children from their parents and throwing them into cages, picking up on a frequent and distorted point made widely by Democrats.

        She’s right that Trump’s now-suspended policy at the U.S.-Mexico border separated thousands of children from their families in ways that had not been done before. But what she did not say is that the very same “cages” were built and used in her husband’s administration, for the same purpose of holding migrant kids temporarily.

        THE FACTS: The reference to cages is misleading and a matter that Democrats have persistently distorted.

        Trump used facilities that were built during the Obama-Biden administration to house children at the border. They are chain-link enclosures inside border facilities where migrants were temporarily housed, separated by sex and age.

        At the height of the controversy over Trump’s zero-tolerance policy at the border, photos that circulated online of children in the enclosures generated great anger. But those photos — by The Associated Press — were taken in 2014 and depicted some of the thousands of unaccompanied children held by President Barack Obama.

        When that fact came to light, some Democrats and activists who had tweeted the photos deleted their tweets. But prominent Democrats have continued to cite cages for children as a distinctive cruelty of Trump.

  1. Ma’am, I do not know you, but please stay safe tomorrow night. I will be praying for your safety and the safety of others and that cooler heads prevail. I don’t think it’s likely that people stay calm, but I hope and pray they do. Take care 🙂

    • Thank you Luke for your incredibly kind words and prayer. Yes I do not plan on leaving tomorrow night. Or even Wednesday night. I will be staying safe. Thank you so much. I pray they do too! Hugs and love xox

  2. A sad state of affairs where friends and neighbours can be so polarized as to wreak havoc on each other and their cities. We need a return to civility and unity, where news is reported without bias, judges are appointed for their skills, not their political affiliation and where friends and neighbours can discuss the matters while listening to opposing views, agreeing to disagree, but agreeing to stay civil and remain friends. Lies, innuendos, aspersions and postal disruptions should not be used to deter voters and one parties supporters should not try to run another’s off the road. It is just exhausting to watch. Stay well, stay safe, be brave and be kind. Allan

    • I so agree Allan. Exhausting to watch and so so so sad. You’re right about that. Thanks for stopping by. Hugs and love xox

  3. Wishing I had something thought-provoking, some sage thought. Like you, I’m left with “Is this what we’ve come to?” Right now I think prayer is the only answer. Pray for God’s choice to be elected. Pray for civility in a time when civility is increasingly rare. Pray for our friends – like you – who live in these urban battle zones. Stay safe, my dear friend!

    • Thanks Jeff – yeah it is emotionally and spiritually draining to really take an inventory of the state of things. Amen. Prayer is all we can do. Pray and vote and pray. Yes! Going to the store right now to pick up dinner to tomorrow night so I don’t have to go out 😬 thanks for stopping by. Big hugs to you and your girls!! Xox

  4. This is written beautifully. It’s obvious you wrote from your heart. I share your concerns. Peace to all tomorrow and every day. I pray for our nation and our people…

    • Thank you so much John, I appreciate that. Yes. Joining you in that important prayer! Hugs and love xox

  5. It makes me feel very sad to see your photos of the boarded up shops. More than ever, I am thankful that we live in the country where we don’t have such sites. We are attending a service to worship tomorrow night. Breaking out the music and just going to praise God, no matter what the election outcome. He is still in charge. And he is always good. Bless you. Praying for NYC.

    • Hi Linda, thank you so much for sharing yourheart. me too – it is such a heartbreaking sight. yes, me too. joining you in that imortant prayer. thanks for stopping by!! God is in control! xox

  6. This is happening all over. Obviously those doing the boarding up are confident about who will win. Those making the threats (and they have) are trying to make people afraid to vote their choice. We must not give in to this fear. We must prayerfully consider our vote and then vote accordingly. Vote early and stay safe. Love your blog.

    • Thanks for this great insight, Mel. You’re right – there is a lot of fear mongering going on. And yes. voting matters! Hugs and love xox

  7. As usual, you provide us with thought provoking comments. We need to pray for civility and moral judgment and decision making. We can lead our neighbors by example; “love thy neighbor”. Nowhere are we told we have to like everyone and/or their actions. We are to “Love” them which also includes respecting them. You, all Americans, and our future are in my prayers. Hugs yo you.

    • thank you so much HJ! you’re absolutely – prayer is the best thing we can do for tomorrow. i appreciate your prayers — joining you! Hugs and love xox

  8. Yeah. This is very sad. No matter who wins or what happens, God is in control. Christ is still on the throne. It’s sad to see Americans destroy their own cities. As you said, we are better than that. As a nation we have overcome many tough times and historical events. No matter what happens, good or bad, it’s not anything we won’t be able to overcome again. Praying for a peaceful evening and week (as we may not know who wins tomorrow night) no matter who wins.

    • Hi Mike, thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. very sad indeed. but you’re right on the money – God is in control! Joining you in that imporatnt prayer! Hugs and love xox

      • Yeah I just take hold of the fact that we can trust God and in His word He says in 2 Timothy 1:7 – For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. My faith stands in the one who died for each of us and was raised from the dead. In dark times, it is so important that followers of Christ be the light of Christ to those who are living in darkness looking for hope.

      • Amen to that – that is one of my alltime favorite verses. so empowering! Hugs and love xox

  9. Oh this election has my nerves on end. I keep telling myself it will be fine but at the same time I hope people vote with their best interests and not vote against the candidate they really don’t like. Thankfully i voted early but I also am taking the election day and the next day off just to make sure things don’t get out of control.

    I work in Manufacturing near Chicago and while I get there at 5am, the Target across the street from the plant I work at (well a little further away) got hit by looters during when the riots first started. Even though I live in the suburbs 30 miles away I pray everything will be ok. The last thing I need is some people wrecking my daily driver car or my home.

    So taking the day off just to keep an eye on my place to make sure everything is alright. I have a cat that i will protect if I have to but the neighborhood is generally quiet but unfortunately people threatened to riot/loot suburban areas. Thats if the election results are out and someone is nominated president.

    I don’t understand why people need to make life more difficult for others. We need to work together, not against one another. The 2016 election I thought was a circus but this one is seriously insane.

    • I so agree — i pray people vote for issues, not for or against vertain personalities. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. Oh gosh – i will be praying for your safety! that is wise to take the day off for sure. Hugs and love xox

      • Yeah its scary that some people’s mindsets of voting for who’s personality is better.

        Its paid vacation time and I really don’t want to get stuck somewhere on the highway, that’s my main concern next to I can stay up late tomorrow to monitor who will be president and I can keep up any developments that may happen suddenly. I just hope that the results will be on time and not delayed like some news reports are saying may happen.

  10. I am praying for peace for this country. Things have certainly gotten out of control. We should be so much better than this. It’s beginning to look like the years I thought I’d left behind and I pray I never have to see again. What has happened to our country. Our country, not just one person but all of ours. So I pray for us all. Be safe, stay safe. God Bless.

    • I will join you in that important prayer!!! thank you so much for sharing your heart. You’re right – it is our country, and we need to remember that we’re all in this together. sending big hugs and prayers! xox

  11. Living where I am, I’ve never seen such sights. Suffice to say it’s pretty sobering to see pictures of stores in NYC hoarded up like that. Sending you prayers from Singapore; may God’s calming presence restore the peace all Americans (and everyone else) need this season, more than ever before.

    • Thanks for sharing that. yeah, it is a surreal sight. thanks for your prayers! joining with you in them! Hugs and love xox

  12. I pray that we can “make America God again”! I pray for safety no matter what conclusion, which God already knows the outcome. I believe we are all on edge, as world has gotten very dark in recent days. I just keep looking up knowing my redemption draws nye. Blessings, and stay safe at the cross! We may be voting for President, but God is King over His nations! Keep on keeping on 🙏🏻💓🇺🇸

    • Hi Lisa, thank you for sharing that. yes – me too! i will join you in those important prayers!!! yes – stay safe too! Hugs and love xox

  13. Amen. Great post. I will be joining in that prayer of peace and civility. We all need to look at people as fellow Americans and not as the enemy. This has all gotten terribly out of control. Be safe everyone!

    • thank you so much! yes! prayer is what we need big time right now! you’re right about that! Hugs and love xox

    • Thank you Paula — you too my dear friend. stay safe! praying for our nation! Hugs and love xox

  14. I blame the Democrats for this. The Party of Tolerance isn’t so tolerant. That’s why I no longer support them and their extremist ways. I wish there were more good people like you around. Who don’t give a crap about this nonsense. That it’s the way we treat each other. Respect different opinions. I put up a post on my blog about it the other night. How we must be more. Do better. I wish that we could go back to the way we once were as a society. I’m ashamed to be a New Yorker. Be careful Caralyn. Stay safe. 💜

  15. Well-said! I couldn’t agree more. I blogged on the same thing the other day. Let’s leave the divisiveness to the politician’s and lock arms as Americans to move forward together…regardless of who is elected!

    • thank you so much Brent. you’re right – we need to come together and move forward as one, no matter what! Hugs and love xox

  16. I really appreciate your thoughts on this. There is POWER in unity! Violence and hate are never the answer, and I’ve never seen it make anything bad go away. You are an amazing blogger ,with some great insight!

    • Thank you Diyana. (Beautiful name btw!) you’re right – power in unity!! I so agree. Thanks for your kind words!! Hugs and love xox

  17. My prediction is that if Trump does win another term, you can certainly expect the Democrat party to do exactly the same as what they have done for the past 4 years – try do distract and detour him with a number of allegations, impeachment processes, etc.
    Since they control the media, they are certainly in control of public opinion. I am saddened to see many of my friends completely fooled by the media – not even thinking for themselves.
    You can be sure that the rioting will increase and the civil unrest will be there as well. If the Democrat party can’t have control of the country, they would rather see it burn to the ground and destroyed – one way or another. Well.. that’s my political rant for the day.

    It would seem that current events are just pushing our thought patterns towards the negative spectrum. News, social media, etc., are just full of it. If its not the Plandemic, its the riots. If its not the riots, its the election.. etc., etc., etc. It seems that there’s no news, if its not bad news.
    On my birthday this year, I had to ask the question, do I really need to count this year, because I never got to live it. I would say that all of us have had this time stolen from us – our lives held hostage by one thing or another.
    In a recent conversation with a friend, we both discussed about actively tuning out everything negative around us and only just keeping the positivity in our minds. With our senses being constantly bombarded with negative imagery, it would be a challenge but it is still doable.
    Not a new idea and its biblical. “dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” – Philippians 4:8

    • you bring up a lot of really great points here. thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. you’re right. – the media is in the Left’s pocket. i pray that tonight will be peaceful. big hugs to you xox

  18. I never understood the rioting mentality. It’s like group-think on steroids. Why can’t humans act civil? People need to realize that not everyone can win… some will win and some will lose. Regardless of which side wins, America will need to “reset” itself, whatever that entails.

    I thought you moved back home for a longer period of time. I’m sorry that you have to endure the less-than-ideal circumstances of NYC. I visited NYC once and it was bustling with life. Now I can’t even imagine what NYC is like these days.

    • Thanks Hilary for sharing your heart on this. I am right there with you. i don’t get it. it doesn’t make sense at all. you’re right! what ever happened to respect!?! yeah NYC is crazy. i’ve been posting updates on my Instagram if you’re interested in seeing live footage. big hugs xo

  19. “Me and you — God only knows, it’s not what we would choose to do […] Haven’t you heard it’s a battle of words (The poster bearer cried)” — Pink Floyd, “Us & Them”

      • There’s a movie called “Pompeii” (Live, 1972) which includes that track + also many quotes from the bands members… excellent for understanding what the band was all about (IMHO) — I wasn’t “there”, but I listened to their albums a LOT! B-)

  20. Grew up in decades of socialist-communist inspired unrest, rioting, destruction – always the same faces present. Their “reasons” all rather invalid as others suffer the same fate but don’t go out destroying. Same people wear choir robes and sing their halleluja’s so passionately. I fail to see their much proclaimed Jesus in their actions. And they don’t see their error. Innocent people suffer because others thrive on hate – there is no dignity in that, just ego.

  21. Sadly all great empires come to an end. And like all great empires they cannot lose power from attack, they are too powerful. They crumble from within. If the United States doesn’t join as one soon then their main competitor, China will rise to power.

    Will it be better or worse, its hard to know, but Americans need to wake up to this reality before it’s too late.

    • thank you for sharing that. Gosh, what a sobering thought. God bless America! Hugs and love xox

      • Praying for America at the moment, and that you are safe in New York. The media over in the Ireland are not showing a pretty picture. Hard to know what is going on as media have a habit of making things worse but Mr Trump coming out saying he has already won is not good at all. Take care of yourself.

      • Thank you again. Yeah, thankfully right now things are quiet and peaceful. But give it another 24 hours and I pray that’s still the case! Hugs and love xox

    • thank you so much Heather for your prayers. joining you in them! they are much needed! Hugs and love xox

    • thank you so much Rolain for your prayers and concern. Definitely will be a big night. Please stay safe as well! Hugs and love xox

  22. Well said Caralyn. Keep writing and editing from the heart. It dang near broke my heart when you were forced to lift your fist in solidarity. To see NYC has been on my bucket list. Your front row report’s have moved that check mark down a little bit. God sees you, he knows you, he hears you, and he loves you.

    • Thank you so much Dan. You’re so right – God is near and loves us. Yeah, that was quite the episode. i still sometimes think back in disbelief that that actually happened. 2020 – what an incredibly sad and wild ride. Hugs and love xox

  23. AMEN! I am praying and fasting today. My prayer is that the country will be restrained by the Spirit from chaos. And that God will have his way in the elections. I’ll pray for you too, sister!

    • thank you so much Amy for your prayers! Joining you! yes — there is power in prayer!!! God bless America! Hugs and love xox

    • oooh — thank you! i look forward to checking that out. i appreciate you passing that along! Hugs and love xox

  24. I don’t normally recommend books but “Gentle and Lowly – The Heart of Christ for Sinners and Sufferers” by Dane Ortlund is one of the most reassuring and inspiring I’ve read in many years (and I read a lot of books). It is beautifully written and a comfort to all who belong to Jesus.

    • oooh thank you Rollie for the reccomendation. i will definitely check it out. i could definitely use some reassurance and inspiration right about now! haha Hugs and love xox

  25. Choose light over dark. Always.
    Amen, Caralyn, Amen. I hope very much that the elections pass off peacefully and that the result is respected whichever way it goes.

    • Yes! Thank you Penny. I pray for peace tonight as well!! Glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  26. Hi Caralyn! It’s so sad about the boarding of businesses in NYC, in anticipation of riots and looting. Miami is a big city and there is ”none” boarded businesses here. One thing I can tell you is that the police here is honored, respected, and trusted to do what’s needed. The leaders have been ready from day one of the pandemic situation and the civil unrest in other states to give firm consequences to anyone who protests in an aggressive or destructive way. And it’s worked so far. We pray for God’s will to be done in today’s election; stay safe when you’re out and about by yourself on the streets of Manhattan. In Jesus’ name…amen! 🙏🇺🇸

    • Thanks Giselle – you’re so right, it’s heartbreaking. I pray for peace tonight. And respect. And a spirit of unity, healing and cooperation, no matter the outcome. And of course, that God’s will be done! Hugs and love xox

  27. Sad that to those of us outside the US, that the image of the land of the free, is tarnished by the thought that freedom means the option to riot if you don’t win.

  28. It’s sad that this is what we’ve come to both politically and as a society. We are boarding up our cities and towns because we are afraid of the outcome of an election; we have curfews in major cities because others might attack innocent people enjoying their evenings outside. All I think about when I see these things happen is Ephesians 6:12.

    • You’re right Joe, it really is so sad. Thanks for sharing your heart. Yes – that is a powerful verse! Hugs and love xox

  29. Great post. If you haven’t yet, you need to watch the Netflix documentary, The Social Dilemma. Social media platforms have torn this country apart. How can we find common ground if both sides buy into completely different realities? Sending love and hope for peace tonight.

    • Thank you so much! I have seen it!! It was so powerful and sobering for sure. I agree – we need an honest and straightforward source for unbiased news! Hugs and love xox

  30. Amen beautiful lady!!! Well said❤️
    God is in control no matter what..tough, sad times but we have a loving God ultimately seated on the throne of power. So thankful for my faith in Him in who I can find true peace.

    • Thank you Ali! You’re right – God is in control, and that’s what I’m clinging to. That comforting truth that we have nothing to fear because God has a good and perfect plan for His children. Amen – in Him we find peace! Big hugs to you xox

  31. What a conundrum facing our country. Great perspective. The good news to remember in all this is that God is bigger than presidents, He’s bigger than the nations. He’s just that awesome and we are under the shadow of His wings.

    • I think you’re right about that. Thanks so much for stopping by. Big prayers. Hugs and love xox

  32. Sorry to hear about what you have to go through in NYC but history repeats itself. Today is much like the 1960’s and the 1970’s. Or like all of the unrest in the 1770’s and 1780’s as our forefathers rebelled against the English King and gained independence from England. And then the 1850’s and 1860’s as the country was ripped apart with hatred and civil war. So endure dear heart and trust in King Jesus to see you though it all. For this too shall pass. Blessings to you.

    • Thanks friend. I appreciate your kind words. You’re right – every time period has seen it’s own strife. Amen – Jesus is with us always! Hugs and love xox

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