Amid a new surge of COVID-19 in New York’s Orthodox Jewish communities, many members are reviving health measures that some had abandoned over the summer — social distancing, wearing masks. For many, there’s also a return of anger: They feel the city is singling them out for criticism.
What a difference a race makes. When Black Lives Matter and ANTIFA terrorists came to New York City, neither of the city’s feckless leaders, Cuomo and De Blasio, said anything at all about the dangers of the thousands of rioters amassing together, not wearing masks and absolutely doing no social distancing. In fact, they both applauded the ‘free expression of speech’ of the rioters. But now, Cuomo and De Blasio have discovered the real “COVID threat”, orthodox Jews.
Not only that, De Blasio began an immediate push to defund the New York City police force, removing over a billion dollars from their budget. De Blasio said “There’s a poison of structural racism,” de Blasio said. “It haunts the lives of people of color everyday in this country in this city.” Hmm, what about the “structural racism” you and Cuomo are exhibiting to the Orthodox Jews? Why are they being singled out and the rioters never were? I think we all know the answer to that one. Never again.
Some Orthodox Jews bristle at NYC’s response to virus surge
FROM THE AP: The latest blow: an order Monday from Gov. Andrew Cuomo temporarily closing public and private schools in several areas with large Orthodox populations. It will take effect Tuesday.
“People are very turned off and very burned out,” said Yosef Hershkop, a Hasidic Jew from Brooklyn who works for a chain of urgent-care centers. “It’s not like we’re the only people in New York getting COVID.”
Over the past few weeks, top government officials, including Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio, have sounded the alarm about localized upticks in COVID-19 after several months in which the state had one of the nation’s lowest infection rates. Officials say the worst-hit ZIP codes overlap with large Orthodox Jewish communities in the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens and in a couple of nearby counties.
— Yaakov Pollak (@Yanky_Pollak) October 7, 2020
Under the shutdown plan submitted to Cuomo by the mayor, 100 public schools and 200 private ones would be closed in nine areas that are home to close to 500,000 people. Those areas represent 7% of the city’s population but have been responsible for about 1,850 new cases in the past four weeks — more than 20% of all new infections in the city during that span.
De Blasio had proposed the shutdown on Sunday, the second day of the Jewish holiday Sukkot, when Orthodox Jews would not be using telephones or computers and thus wouldn’t have heard the news until sundown.
“Announcing this in the middle of a Jewish holiday shows City Hall’s incompetence and lack of sensitivity towards the Jewish Community,” tweeted Daniel Rosenthal, a state Assembly member from Queens. De Blasio said he was aware of the holiday but felt obligated to announce the plan as soon as it was developed.
The emphasis on the Orthodox communities rankled many of their members, even as civic and religious leaders acknowledged the dangers posed by the new outbreak and urged compliance with guidelines. Many say they are already straining to balance rituals and traditions centered on communal gatherings with health rules.
HAPPENING NOW: Orthodox Jews take to the streets of Boro Park, Brooklyn, in New York, to peacefully protest new lockdown restrictions by @NYGovCuomo on places of worship, saying they single out Jews. pic.twitter.com/Y3kGnWQcyC
— SV News 🚨 (@SVNewsAlerts) October 7, 2020
The latest developments have rekindled friction that surfaced in March and April, when some Orthodox neighborhoods in and around New York City were hit hard by the coronavirus. Hundreds of people died or were hospitalized, and lockdowns closed many Jewish schools and businesses.
In April, de Blasio oversaw the dispersal of a big Hasidic funeral in Brooklyn and took heat over a tweet warning “the Jewish community, and all communities” against large gatherings. Some community members accused him of a double standard because of his support for gatherings linked to the Black Lives Matter movement. READ MORE
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