New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Thursday that he’s banning all large public gatherings to stop the spread of coronavirus, except for Black Lives Matter protests.
De Blasio made the curious comments while appearing on CNN with Wolf Blitzer on Thursday.
“It means things like parades, you know things that here in the city could mean not just thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of people,” said de Blasio of his ban. “It’s just not time for that now.”
“What about protests? If people want to march down Fifth Avenue, are they gonna be allowed to do so?” asked Blitzer.
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“Look, Wolf, this is always an area of real sensitivity. If you’re just talking about health, we would always say hey folks you know stay home if you can,” responded de Blasio.
“But we understand this moment in history people are talking about the need for historic changes,” he added.
“I mean today, in New York City, you know, recognizing the power and the meaning of the message Black Lives Matter, which we did in front of Trump Tower today, this is a historic moment of change,” de Blasio continued, “we have to respect that, but also say to people, the kinds of gatherings we’re used to, the the parades, the fairs, we just can’t have that while we’re focusing on health right now.”
The mayor was referring to his joining activists in trolling President Donald Trump by painting a large Black Lives Matter mural on the street in front of the Trump International Hotel.
De Blasio has been excoriated by his critics and even some on the left for his mishandling of the coronavirus response in New York City.