On Monday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo condemned a concert in Southampton for “egregious social distancing violations” while he maintained silence over a social justice march involving hundreds the very next day in Manhattan.
“Videos from a concert held in Southampton on Saturday show egregious social distancing violations,” Cuomo tweeted. “I am appalled. The Department of Health will conduct an investigation. We have no tolerance for the illegal & reckless endangerment of public health.”
Videos from a concert held in Southampton on Saturday show egregious social distancing violations. I am appalled.
The Department of Health will conduct an investigation.
We have no tolerance for the illegal & reckless endangerment of public health.https://t.co/gf9kggdo8w
— Archive: Governor Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) July 28, 2020
On Sunday, the very day after the Southampton concert that featured the D.J. duo The Chainsmokers, hundreds of people, many walking in close proximity to each other, marched past Grand Central Station in Manhattan for a protest called the “March for Black Womxn.” Cuomo did not condemn the marchers.
In early June, after massive protests had already been held in New York, Cuomo lauded the protesters, stating,”They’re white people, they’re African-American people, they’re Latinos, they’re young people. They’re people who want change.” He added, “If you have been at a protest, get a [coronavirus] test, please.”
Before that, in late May, Cuomo said of the protests following the death of Gerorge Floyd, “It is this nation’s history of discrimination and racism dating back hundreds of years. That is the honest truth and that’s what is behind this anger and frustration and I share the outrage at this fundamental injustice. I do. And that’s why I say I figuratively stand with the protestors…”
Cuomo recently traveled to Georgia, where he hugged Savannah Mayor Van Johnson and stood close to him without wearing a mask. The two men also elbow-bumped without masks on at the end of the briefing, triggering criticism.
Johnson confessed the elbow-bump at a press conference on Tuesday, although he did not mention the hug. He stated:
We messed up. I mean, yeah, we messed up. I mean, no big deal, in this case. We, if you noticed, and for those of you who were there, if you noticed, for those of you who were there, this was a socially distanced event. Everyone sat six feet away from each other and for the duration of the event, everyone wore a mask. When I was speaking, I took my mask off. When I was not speaking. I put the mask on.
When it was over, I stood up to make my presentation to the governor, and in the moment, gave out presentations. Then he gave a presentation. And then the infamous bump occurred without me realizing that my mask was on the table and where he didn’t realize his mask was on the table. Um, so we’re human. We made a mistake, and I mean, I think now, for people who want to take the significance of that entire day, the significance of this massive donation, the significance of this wonderful friendship and partnership and want to delineate (sic) it to a picture, I think they need other stuff to do.
“Cuomo, a Democrat, also declined to self-quarantine after returning to New York, despite his emergency orders dictating quarantine protocols for many New York residents who have traveled to Georgia and other states,” Just The News reported.
The April order from Cuomo stated: “Effective at 8 p.m. on Friday, April 17, 2020 any individual who is over age two and able to medically tolerate a face-covering shall be required to cover their nose and mouth with a mask or cloth face-covering when in a public place and unable to maintain, or when not maintaining, social distance.”