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Home Coronavirus Governor Cuomo Tweets "Don't Make Me Come Down There" after seeing crowds on St. Marks

Governor Cuomo Tweets “Don’t Make Me Come Down There” after seeing crowds on St. Marks

Governor Cuomo Tweets “Don’t Make Me Come Down There” after seeing crowds on St. Marks

On June 12, a video would be posted on Twitter showing hundreds of folks congregating and socializing outside of bars and restaurants along the St. Marks section of the Village. Governor Andrew Cuomo responded the following day by tweeting: “Don’t make me come down there…” With New York City having just entered Phase 1 Reopening Status and other regions in Phase 2 and 3, social distancing and face coverings adherence are still required guidelines for the state of New York.

It would be the second time that the Governor’s complained about population density. On March 22 he complained about that which he witnessed in the streets of NYC.

Today, the Governor announced that business would be shut down if they did not adhere to guidelines and those violating the Open Container Law should be fined.

In past days and weeks there’s been reports of New Yorkers congregating and socializing outside of bars and restaurants. When one member of the press,  Sydney Kashiwagi, of the Staten Island Advance (SILive), brought it to the Mayor’s attention, that reporter would be shot down for bringing it up due to the then ongoing George Floyd protests and looting. “The NYPD was dealing with a lot of very complex issues all over the city, protests, peaceful people, not peaceful people, that was their focus, not bars wherever you were with all due respect. We will go back to enforcing on bars and restaurants as we were many times very effectively. We’ll go back to that,” said the Mayor.

Days prior to Ms. Kashiwagi’s question, I would ask the Mayor if he had any concerns of folks imbibing and forgetting themselves if/when outdoor dining became a reality. He would brush it off by first acknowledging that, “Of course, if people are under the influence, they’re going to think differently.”

The full transcript of our conversation and other related items can be found farther down along the page.

Although, the Mayor would declare his confidence in establishment owners being vigilant about their patrons behaving and adhering to the city and state COVID-19 guidelines, that would not address the issue of what an intoxicated individual does after they’ve left said establishment. Nor does that do anything about those folks congregating outside of established outdoor eating areas as they’re already doing these days on the sidewalks and streets.

The following is a timeline of related events:

May 2 – Violent incident involving civilians and police acting upon supposed social distancing non-adherence

May 15 – Mayor declares reset on NYPD approach to Social Distancing enforcement to focus mainly on large gatherings

May 28 – City Council announces Proposed Outdoor Dining Legislations

May 28 – First George Floyd protest in Lower Manhattan

May 28 & 29-

    • May 28: I directed a question to the City Council about alcohol and adherence to rules and guidelines
    • May 29: I asked the Mayor the same question

June 1 – First day of Curfew beginning at 11:00 pm

June 2 – Curfew to begin earlier (at 8:00 pm) due to looting and unrest

June 2 – Sydney Kashiwagi, of the Staten Island Advance (SILive) question to Mayor concerning what’s being done about crowds outside bars and restaurants

June 3 – Governor announces outdoor dining allowed for those regions in Phase 2

June 4 – Mayor de Blasio press release about plans for Outdoor dining for Phase 2 Reopening

June 7 – Curfew ends yet protests continue in much smaller capacities.

June 8 – Mayor reiterates he made a mistake with use of NYPD for social distancing enforcement. (Contextually speaking, meaning smaller than large gatherings)

June 8 – First day of NYC’s entry into Phase 1 Reopening Status

+++

Related items as they pertain to the imbibing of liquor:

May 28: My question directed to NYC Council Speaker Corey Johnson, but answered by an unnamed Council Member:

Question: Considering how we have no Perfect clue as to what a Phase 3 scenario would look like and what sort of social distancing rules would still be in place. I’d like to ask about those restaurants with alcohol licenses. Most individuals when drinking tend to lose themselves and considering the situation we’re in, are there any concerns about people drinking, forgetting themselves and doing that which may defeat the ultimate aim of public safety? I’m wondering if you’ve considered limiting the consumption of alcohol where this subject is concerned?

Unnamed Council Member: 

On background

We can’t legislate to allow people to drink outside. But we believe the state will change the rules so restaurants can serve alcohol. We’re optimistic. We hope amid a global pandemic, New Yorkers will take their own and their neighbors’ safety very seriously, and be smart if they order alcohol. We certainly don’t want NYPD to get involved unless a crime has taken place.

May 29: My question to Mayor Bill de Blasio

Question: Good morning, Mr. Mayor. My question concerns the push for restaurant outdoor dining by the City Council and how your own team is examining the possibilities thereof. Considering how we have no perfect clue as to what a phase three scenario would look like and what sort of social distancing rules would still be in place, I’d like to ask about those restaurants with alcohol licenses, and I guess bars. Mr. Mayor, you’ve often spoken of New Yorkers doing the right thing, yet even when one half intoxicated, it’s kind of hard to do the right thing. Are there any concerns about people individually and collectively forgetting themselves and doing that which may defeat the ultimate aim of public safety?

Mayor: Of course. Now, Luis, you’re – you know, every-day New Yorkers and everyday humans. Of course, if people are under the influence, they’re going to think differently. And you know, look, I’m the guy who said we had to shut down our restaurants and bars back in March, because it was clear that we needed to do something different. And, obviously, we know, particularly in bars, there’s not only a space issue, there is the fact that if people under the influence are not going to follow rules as well. But I’ve got to tell you, I think having talked to a lot of people in restaurant and bar industry, folks want to come back, they want to come back responsibly. They understand it’s a different reality. And everyone talks from the perspective of understanding there has to be social distancing. And, you know, one of the things I’ve heard from a lot of the restaurant bar owners is that there’s a conundrum for them because they want to bring back this part of New York City we all cherish and yet they also are concerned it has to be an atmosphere people want to be a part of – that if it feels too artificial and feels too difficult, you know, people are not going to feel comfortable. So, it’s a really tough balance. But what we know for sure is we’ve got to get this industry back, we’ve got to do it with social distancing for the foreseeable future. We’ve got to come up with smart standards. Restaurants I think have an easier situation than bars in, we’re going to have to figure that out and the outdoor piece is very, very appealing and I feel good that we’ll be able to find some solutions there. But it’s also going to require the restaurant owners and the bar owners to be really vigilant that their patrons follow the rules. And if not, we’re going to do enforcement. And I think everyone’s gotten the point about that and that’s why we see very, very little noncompliance. The vast majority of restaurant and bar owners throughout this whole process, the ones that have stayed open in various ways, everyone’s been doing the right thing almost to a one. But enforcement helps to remind people, so it’ll be there.

Related items pertaining to Social Distancing:

May 15: Mayor’s daily COVID-19 Response Press Conference

Mayor: And so, I want to talk about a reset in our approach today, … we start with the fundamental notion – the NYPD is here to protect lives, to save lives, and where we see the greatest danger to lives in terms of the Coronavirus and the area where we can enforce is around gatherings, particularly large gatherings. So, that’s where we’re going to focus, wanting to give people this clarity. And it’s literally the bigger the gathering, the more that needs to be done by the NYPD to make sure that gathering either never get started to begin with or is quickly broken up.

June 8: Mayor’s interview with Errol Louis of “Inside City Hall”

Mayor: Obviously with social distancing, we were wrong. I want to take full responsibility, Errol. I was so concerned about the coronavirus, I tried to apply the abilities of the NYPD to make sure there was social distancing. That was a mistake. And I quickly changed it, Commissioner Shea, we quickly changed it. We sent civilians and instead we sent the Cure Violence Movement in instead. That’s a very good example of something that actually could be done better by civilians. So, we have to look at those kinds of solutions.

 

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