New York City Bill de Blasio became enraged over the weekend when throngs of city residents emerged from their two-month hibernations and went (gasp!) outside.
New Yorkers packed the sidewalks, flocked to the beaches and gathered outside of bars, many of which are still closed but are still allowed to serve drinks.
The mayor didn’t like people living their lives — not one bit. So on Sunday, he threatened city residents.
“The police department will be out, the sheriff’s office will be out watching very carefully on the Upper East Side in particular,” he said. “We’re not going to tolerate people congregating. It’s as simple as that.”
“If we have to shut places down, we will,” de Blasio roared.
To help further shut down the city, de Blasio asked New Yorkers to tattle on their neighbors if they see restaurants or bars where people are not adhering to his social distancing edicts.
“If we have instances where there is not compliance I want to know about it,” de Blasio said. “I want any New Yorker who sees any place allowing dining in to call 311 immediately and they will be visited immediately with inspectors and there will be serious fines. If we have to shut places down we will.”
De Blasio went further on Monday, declaring that there will be “no swimming” at any of the city’s beaches and warning residents that they would “be taken right out of the water” if they even dip a toe into the water.
“If you want to walk on the beach, fine,” de Blasio said. “But no swimming, no parties, no barbecues.
“Anyone tries to get in the water they’ll be taken right out of the water,” he said, adding that there will be “fencing” that would “be in position,” but said it “doesn’t have to be put up unless we have to take tougher measures.”
“The fencing, again, is available, but we don’t want to use it if we don’t have to,” de Blasio said. “The goal is not to have it implemented.”
De Blasio added: “No swimming, no sports … Use common sense and observe social distancing.”
The mayor said that the New York City Police Department would work to “avoid” crowding on beach boardwalks. “It is not beach season like normal. It is a pandemic.”
“It’s not safe” to reopen now, he said. “It’s not the right thing to do.”