Radio show callers rant to de Blasio on just about everything


Mayor de Blasio got an earful on his weekly radio show Friday, first from a Crown Heights resident who tore into him for planning another homeless shelter in the neighborhood and then from a Bronx smoker who accused him of turning into nanny-like Mayor Bloomberg.

The first caller to WNYC complained that Crown Heights was overburdened with homeless shelters — unlike Hizzoner’s home neighborhood of Park Slope — and questioned why her sons couldn’t have the same opportunity as his son Dante.

“Why do we continue to perpetuate the tale of two cities by having homeless shelters in black minority, low-income communities?” she asked.

“We want the same opportunities his son has.”

De Blasio responded that every community must do its share.

He said that Park Slope has a shelter four blocks from his home and that the neighborhood would see the number of shelter beds increase under his new plan to create 90 shelters across the city over five years.

“These are her neighbors we’re talking about who are going to live in that facility… Being in your own community is the best way to do it,” the mayor said.

“If they’re unwanted, then that’s a moral question.”

When the caller asked for proof that those who will be housed in Crown Heights shelters were from the community, Hizzoner chided her for not knowing her facts.

“Opponents love all over the city to throw down this card: ‘Oh, they’re really not from the community,’” he said. “Yes they are from the community. We know exactly how many people are from each community,” he added.

“And it’s just a smokescreen. People should step up and recognize that we have to serve people in need.”

The next caller, identified as Trey from The Bronx, said he was “distressed” by the mayor’s plan to hike the minimum cost for a pack of smokes from $10.50 to $13.

“I’m grown. I pay my taxes. If I choose to smoke a cigarette I should not have to break my bank account — because I’m on a tight budget — because I want to smoke a cigarette as a grown adult,” the caller said.

“And for you to turn into Mayor Bloomberg, which is what you’re doing right now, and say, you know what, you people don’t need all this sugar. I’m going to cut out sodas… why don’t you do that as well?” he added. “So we can be miserable and go kill ourselves. Because if the only joy in a person’s life is smoking a cigarette when they get home from work after a hard day, who are you to take that away?”

De Blasio responded that, “No one’s going to accuse me of turning into Michael Bloomberg on a whole host of levels.”

But he noted that he agreed with much of Bloomberg’s policies on public health.

“You can say, ‘Oh, you know, it’s OK, we’re in America we have a right to do something horrible to ourselves,’” the mayor said.

“That’s not my interpretation,” he added. “I don’t buy this as an individual rights question. I think this is a public health question.”



Source link