Dumb And Dumber-2

We’ll start with New York City.  You’ll recall that when NYC was hit hard early on with the coronavirus, with hospitals being overrun and with medical professionals unable to keep up with demand, NY Governor Cuomo made an urgent call, across the land, for doctors and nurses to come and assist.  And come they did.  In great numbers, helping immeasurably to ease the strain of coronavirus patient overload and help provide welcome relief for resident heath care staffs.

And by way of a “thanks” for their incredible outpouring of rescue effort relief, coming from near and far, these visiting medical folks have been advised by the Governor that they will have to pay New York State income tax for any earnings received! Apparently, a nonresident working in the state for more than 14-days must pay the tax. Mr. Cuomo indicated that the state has a $13-billion budget deficit and needs the money, if federal salvation funds don’t magically appear.  Beyond belief to treat those medical professionals who came to NYC voluntarily, amidst a crisis, in such a demeaning manner. Pretty sure that if the income tax thing had been revealed upfront, the response to his call would’ve been far less enthusiastic. Really bad public relations. And, in a word, absurd!

Caught in the same state tax fishing net, were the good people who came to NYC with Samaritan’s Purse. Led by Franklin Graham (Billy’s son), the Samaritan’s Purse team is a Christian relief organization that functions to provide medical assistance around the world in times of extreme challenge, such as this virus epidemic.  They set-up and staffed a tented field hospital, specifically a respiratory care unit, in NYC’s Central Park, as they were doing in Italy to assist with that nation’s coronavirus crisis. In NYC, that team treated 190 coronavirus patients, thanks to their relief specialists, at the park facility, working around the clock in partnership with near-by Mount Sinai Health System.

Once again, as a special thanks for their extensive work, not only did the organization get hit with the state income tax penalty, but in a double whammy, it also managed to ran afoul of the NY City Council Speaker, through no relief-effort fault of their own.  You’ll recall that Samaritan’s Purse is a Christian organization, and with its leader, Rev. Graham, operates under the teachings of their faith. And just as soon as they were no longer needed, it was game over. Reportedly, the Speaker tweeted: “Their continued presence here is an affront to our values of inclusion and is painful for all New Yorkers who care deeply about the LGBTQ community.  Hate has no place in our beautiful city.”

Deceitful that this objection hadn’t surfaced until the SP folks had worked their butts off caring for his city’s virus sufferers, working day and night without stopping, to relieve the strain on at least one slammed NYC hospital. Apparently, as so often happens, those who proclaim progressive tolerance and inclusion, in the end, don’t really seem to practice it themselves.  The Samaritan’s Purse people came there to help in a time of dire need.  Rather than being demeaned, they deserved huge thanks from all of those who don’t live in that “beautiful city,” where we’re told there’s no “hate,” unless you’re a Franklin Graham Christian.

And, finally, in New York City, this unconscionable blunder. In late March, the city’s Health Commissioner received an emergency request from the NYPD for 500,000 face masks to help protect their police officers from being infected by the coronavirus, as well as members of the public they encountered.  Her response to that plea was reportedly as follows: “I don’t give two rats asses about your cops. I need them for others.”  Unbelievable! Who other than medical personnel would be in greater need of masks than the police out constantly dealing with the public?

The Commissioner later apologized and did provide the NYPD with 50,000 masks, which was not nearly enough (NYPD: 55,000 officers). Regardless, considerable relationship damage had clearly been done.  “Five brave NYPD detectives died while officers searched for protective equipment to purchase, while we waited for the city to distribute masks,” said the police union head.  “She has brought great shame to New York City government and every medical professional who is courageously fighting the coronavirus pandemic alongside our cops.”

What amazing disrespect, in the midst of a massive, emergency health epidemic, toward the dedicated men and women of law enforcement in that huge city, out working around the clock to help protect the public, as well of themselves, from this insidious virus. By mid-May, it was reported that, to date, the city’s police officers had come down with 5,490 coronavirus cases, resulting in 41virus-related deaths. An intemperate outburst, in the midst of a crisis, from a seemingly disrespectful public official, with life and death on the line.


(Cuomo tax via dailycaller.com, Marlo Safi, 5-6-20; Samaritan’s Purse via daily signal.com,  Nicole Russell, 5-15-20; NYC Health Commissioner via nypost.com, Andrea Peyser, 5-14-20).