“And no religion, too.”
Drastic times call for drastic measures. Bill de Blasio now understands that the city he is mayor of, which is currently the epicenter of the coronavirus in the U.S., is in the midst of drastic times. He didn’t always understand that. Earlier this month, he encouraged New Yorkers to get on with their lives — to go to shows, restaurants, and other destinations where people are in close proximity to one another.
But now he knows better. At a press briefing on Friday (video below), he had stern words for houses of worship that were not heeding his shutdown order:
A small number of religious communities, specific churches and specific synagogues, are unfortunately not paying attention to this guidance even though it’s so widespread. I want to say to all those who are preparing for the potential of religious services this weekend: If you go to your synagogue, if you go to your church and attempt to hold services after having been told so often not to, our enforcement agents will have no choice but to shut down those services.
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But then he went on to say something truly bizarre:
If that does not happen, they [law enforcement] will take additional action up to the point of fines and potentially closing the building permanently. [Emphasis added]
Permanently? Is he saying he will require churches and synagogues to remain shuttered even after the pandemic is brought under control? Isn’t that rather extreme?
As Jazz Shaw notes at Hot Air, de Blasio is being arbitrary in his enforcement of which venues to close. Public parks remain open … and in use.