During a short introductory speech at Miami NFT Week, Mayor Francis Suarez said NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, "are going to change the world."
"These kinds of democratizing tokens, like non-fungible tokens, are going to change the world," Suarez said to a room full of NFT and cryptocurrency enthusiasts. "They're going to create access for everyone. And as a country, as a city, as a world, we have to take advantage of it. We cannot create regulation that stifles it."
With his son, Andrew, and daughter, Gloriana, in mind, Suarez spoke to the ways in which NFTs and crypto can positively impact future generations.
"[NFTs and cryptocurrencies] can create prosperity for another generation," he said. "It may sound dramatic to some. It may sound unrealistic to others. They may not understand it, and that's okay. We do. We understand this opportunity. We embrace this opportunity."
Suarez, who won reelection for Miami mayor in November 2021 with over 75 percent of the total vote, is only one of many elected government officials embracing this new technology.
Mayor Scott Conger of Jackson, Tennessee pledged to give city employees the option to convert their paychecks into Bitcoin and wants to install a digital mining network in City Hall.
Mayor Eric Adams of New York City accepted his first paycheck in Bitcoin and Ether, Ethereum's native token.
NFTs and cryptocurrencies are impacting international politics, too, with South Korean President-elect Yoon Suk-yeol promising to allow ICOs, or initial coin offerings, and provide tax breaks on cryptocurrency earnings.
There are also, of course, crypto and NFT adversaries in politics. Sen. Elizabeth Warren spoke harshly of crypto and NFTs, recently saying buying Bitcoin is the equivalent of buying air (perhaps a good investment depending on circumstances?).
Entire countries, including China, Russia, and others, have restricted access to or banned cryptocurrencies entirely.
The future of crypto and NFTs is up in the air, but their impact on the world is certain. Policymakers will continue to shape the industry, and the next few years will be crucial for the mainstream adoption of these life-changing technologies.
"I call upon all of you to continue to raise your voice," Suarez urged the audience in the final seconds of his speech. "Continue to believe. Continue to build, to create, to innovate. Because it is that fundamental belief that is going to propel our city, our country, and our world forward."