New York, N.Y. — New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is in the news again for all the wrong reasons…again! He chastised the local Jewish Community for attending a funeral gather during the coronavirus stay-at-home orders.
His tweet reads: My message to the Jewish community, and all communities, is this simple: the time for warnings has passed. I have instructed the NYPD to proceed immediately to summons or even arrest those who gather in large groups. This is about stopping this disease and saving lives. Period.”
My message to the Jewish community, and all communities, is this simple: the time for warnings has passed. I have instructed the NYPD to proceed immediately to summons or even arrest those who gather in large groups. This is about stopping this disease and saving lives. Period.
— Mayor Eric Adams (@NYCMayor) April 29, 2020
There’s no way to read this tweet from Tuesday night in an exculpatory fashion.
On Tuesday night, there was a Hasidic funeral in Williamsburg. De Blasio’s own NYPD helped arrange street closures for this funeral. Despite showing up in greater numbers than was safe, but the Jewish people of that community came to show their respects to the dead and they were wearing masks. Given that information, the NYPD were responsible for organizing pylons for the funeral.
As of Thursday morning, a Brooklyn rabbi issued an apology. “We understand Mayor Bill de Blasio’s frustration and his speaking out against the gathering. As said, we thought that the procession will be in accordance with the rules, and we apologize that it turned out otherwise.”
Twelve people were issued summonses for violating social distancing orders and failure to disperse, according to NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea.
A local news site called “Yeshia World” calls out the mayor’s alleged double standard.
But where was the NYPD and Mayor de Blasio when tens of thousands of New Yorkers were packed into parks and other locations to watch the Thunderbirds and Blue Angels today?
People gathered on city streets and in New York parks to watch the Blue Angels flyover, many in proximity to each other and not wearing masks.
A NYC Democratic city council member, who represents a section of Brooklyn with a large Orthodox Jewish population also expressed his disbelief of the mayor’s statement on Twitter, writing “This has to be a joke.”
This has to be a joke. Did the Mayor of NYC really just single out one specific ethnic community (a community that has been the target of increasing hate crimes in HIS city) as being noncompliant?? Has he been to a park lately? (What am I saying – of course he has!) https://t.co/LYKnUZm2Mc
— Chaim Deutsch (@ChaimDeutsch) April 29, 2020
Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) also questioned the mayor in a tweet. “Would DeBlasio have sent this identical tweet with the word ‘Jewish’ replaced by any other religious minority? If not, why not? Laws should be enforced neutrally w/o targeting religious faith.”
Would DeBlasio have sent this identical tweet with the word “Jewish” replaced by any other religious minority? If not, why not? Laws should be enforced neutrally w/o targeting religious faith. #ProtectFreeExercise https://t.co/dMVcX0bin4
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) April 29, 2020
Just months ago, the city and its surrounding area saw a wave of physical attacks and harassment against Jews. De Blasio was asked about whether his words could pose danger to the city’s Jewish residents.
The mayor said that while he will not tolerate incidents like those that happened Tuesday, he also “won’t tolerate anti-Semitism.” The city of New York is home to 1.2 million Jews. In 2019, there was an increase in anti-Semitic hate crimes by 29% in all 5 boroughs. In December, Mayor de Blasio stated, “An attack on the Jewish community is an attack on all New Yorkers.”
What is abundantly clear, is the mixed messaging coming directly from the de Blasio and the mayor’s office at City Hall.