Bar owner declares he’s lost faith in NY leadership after Cuomo implies he deserved arrest
Back in the summer, when Antifa radicals set up an “autonomous zone” in downtown Seattle, liberals, including the city’s leadership, and the media cheered. Severing from everyday society was viewed in Seattle and by the media as a blow struck against “systemic” racism and police brutality.
Yet on the other coast this week, authorities were not amused when Danny Presti and Keith McAlarney, the long-suffering owners of Mac’s Public House in Staten Island, declared their bar an autonomous zone – a la the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone in Seattle. Because they dared to swerve around overly restrictive and seemingly arbitrary COVID-19 regulations in order to pay their bills and feed their families, Mac’s was raided and closed, Presti was arrested and the pair faced steeps fines and the loss of their liquor license for defying those who will not be defied.
“This owner is learning that actions have consequences,” Cuomo said in a statement. “Breaking the law and putting your neighbors’ lives at risk during a global pandemic to make a political statement is simply unacceptable.”
But they appear unbowed by the strong-arming forces of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio.
“At this point,” Presti told “Fox & Friends” Friday morning, “we are losing faith, and kind of lost faith in the ability for our local and city governments to help us.”
“We have lost faith in the ability for our local and state governments to help us:” Staten Island bar owner arrested for defying NYC lockdown orders speaks out on his fight against the latest restrictions. @foxandfriends pic.twitter.com/vtCrmpM6FL
— Brian Kilmeade (@kilmeade) December 4, 2020
In an interview earlier this week with Fox’s Tucker Carlson, Presti’s lawyer, Lou Gelormino, shared how asinine the Cuomo-de Blasio crackdown is.
He noted that his client’s business is in a designated hot zone where indoor dining and drinking are banned, but less than two blocks away, he said, “you can sit down (and) have a burger and a beer.”
“We’ll all use common sense and we’re going to assume – I’m not a scientist, I’m an attorney – that the COVID virus doesn’t stop at the railroad tracks where you can go eat a block away. I’m assuming the COVID virus doesn’t stop there,” Gelormino said when Carlson asked if there was a scientific basis for closing his client’s pub. “But in Gov. Cuomo’s wisdom, I have no idea what science they used.”
Gelormino also pointed out that the south side of Staten Island, where his client’s bar is situated, did not vote for either Cuomo or de Blasio.
In his interview on Friday, Presti continued, “We just need in some way to either be assisted or to get our places open and these state agencies and city agencies that come in and threaten to fine us or pull our licenses every single day, it’s not right.” Instead, government agencies are “kicking open the door and then threatening tens of thousands of dollars of fines every day,” he added.
“This is what we’re saying to our governments, and Governor Cuomo and the mayor, is you have to stop this and you need to assist us,” Presti said.