In recent weeks, we have seen the clear hypocrisy of Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio.
King Cuomo has continued his war on our small businesses that are trying to stay afloat with this pandemic. On July 30, the governor proudly announced more violations that his state Liquor Authority issued to bars and restaurants for violating his edicts related to the novel coronavirus.
We must remember that many of these businesses are owned by our neighbors and friends. They have done all they can to survive this ordeal. At first, they were ordered to close. Eventually, they were permitted to open for delivery and take-out only. If they survived up to this point, they were then able to serve their customers outdoors. They were under the impression that in the next phase, two weeks later, indoor dining would be allowed again.
Unfortunately, this last part has not happened yet, and who knows if and when it will. Therefore, businesses have to make the most out of their delivery, take-out, and outdoor dining options.
Cuomo is seemingly intent on creating as many obstacles as possible for bars and restaurants. Now, these establishments must also serve food with any alcohol ordered. The definition of what qualifies as as food is purely up to Cuomo, and it has evolved over the past two weeks.
But, the contagiousness of the coronavirus goes on hold for protests. How else do you explain the governor’s cracking down on small businesses, and not permitting New Yorkers to go to church and celebrate family events? Yet, he and the Democrats continue to cheer on mass protests.
To make matters worse for these entrepreneurs whose business skills are getting the test of a lifetime, Cuomo has requested that the NYPD step up its enforcement of social distancing and other regulations at these businesses.
Perfectly summarizing Cuomo’s misplaced priorities and mixed messages, Andrea Catsimatidis of the Manhattan Republican party tweeted, “So now the Democrats want the police? I’m confused…or do they just want the police to shut down businesses but not to protect people from criminals.”
Not to be outdone, the mayor bluntly said that matters surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement get preferential treatment and do not have to follow the same rules as everyone else.
When it was revealed that the city ignored its own permit process when painting “Black Lives Matter” on streets across the five boroughs, de Blasio responded by saying that this cause “transcends all normal realities, because we are at a moment of history when that had to be said and done. That’s a decision I made”
Meanwhile, he said, “the normal process continues” for everyone else.
We should not be okay with our city and state’s executives freely exercising such double standards.
Bob Capano has worked for Brooklyn Republican and Democrat elected officials, and has been an adjunct political science professor for over 15 years. Follow him on twitter @bobcapano.