De Blasio: Protests on ‘400 Years of American Racism’ Are ‘Not the Same Question’ as Opening Stores or Religious Services

During a press conference on Tuesday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) said that while he is concerned that protesting in New York City might cause a resurgence of coronavirus cases, “grappling with an extraordinary crisis, seated in 400 years of American racism…is not the same question as the understandably aggrieved store owner or the devout religious person who wants to go back to services.”

De Blasio was asked why he was merely recommending that protesters stay home, while retail stores were banned from opening and religious services with more than 10 people were banned and whether there were different rules for different people.

He responded, “We’re in the middle of a national crisis, a deep-seated national crisis. There is no comparison. I’m sorry, I do feel for the store owners. I really do. … And I’m so happy that on Monday, we’re going to start to open up.”

After talking about the coronavirus numbers, de Blasio said that religious leaders in the city have said they wouldn’t move prematurely. He also expressed concern that there might be a resurgence of the coronavirus because of the protests, and that he wishes people would stay home in the name of health.

He added, “But this is the other piece of the equation, when you see a nation, an entire nation, simultaneously grappling with an extraordinary crisis, seated in 400 years of American racism, I’m sorry, that is not the same question as the understandably aggrieved store owner or the devout religious person who wants to go back to services.”

De Blasio also stated that the protests have only taken place over a few days are taking place outdoors and there’s less risk than having people indoors.

(h/t Newsday)

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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