In an editorial, Joshua Sotomayor-Einstein states his case why the Hoboken Spaghetti Dinner Block Party should not only be open to guests that have received their COVID-19 vaccination.
Mayor Bhalla’s latest decree, announced by another of his many abuses of the emergency alert system, is the same safety theater he has peddled over the last year.
The decree, that attendees of the annual Spaghetti Dinner must have vaccination ID paper to enter the cordoned-off outdoor area that is the dinner and children 12 and under must wear a mask upon entrance, is part and parcel of Mayor Bhalla’s fear-over-facts “leadership” style over the last year-plus of pandemic.
The facts are clear – nearly 100 percent of Hoboken senior citizens, the majority of attendees of the dinner, are vaccinated.
Less than a tenth of a percent of fully vaccinated people have gotten covid (including the Delta variant) a second time and the vast majority of those have been non-life-threatening mild cases.
Moreover, outdoor transmission rates, outdoor transmission from children under vaccination ages, and by vaccinated carriers are almost non-existent and range from less than 1 percent to .01 percent.
Be they scientifically verified or merely common sense, from the beginning of the pandemic Mayor Bhalla has not been interested in facts. Rather, he is interested in engaging in the most amount of fear mongering to create the greatest possible image of himself as hero-savior of the public.
Bhalla attempts to make the public act like the children’s story character Chicken Little and fear the sky falling because when it fails to do so, he will claim responsibility for saving the day.
But if Bhalla really believed people who gather outside should bring their vaccination ID with them, why would he not have made that a requirement of his fundraiser a mere few weeks ago?
Bhalla’s insincerity doesn’t end there, rather according to his statements, whenever he is virtue signaling for the media, he believes in “disparate impact” – that a policy is racist based not on whether it explicitly targets people based on race but on the racial breakdown of its results.
By Bhalla’s past logic, his restricting the Spaghetti Dinner to the vaccinated is racist because more white people are vaccinated than Blacks and Hispanics. Is Mayor Bhalla actually racist? Who knows?
What we do know is that because (disparate impact is intellectual garbage and) he applies one set of standards to policies he doesn’t like and a different rubric to his own, Bhalla is a hypocrite.
This is not the first, nor will it be the last, example of a politician creating rules for the public that they do not apply to themselves.
Bhalla is far from the only politician to have no standards but double standards, but the public should long remember the inane policies of this mayoral administration.
It was Mayor Bhalla who attempted to impose an illegal curfew and banned people from public parks early in covid when everyone knew outdoor transmission rates were much less than indoor and that chasing people indoors would spread Covid.
While it is true Bhalla has been working with local healthcare providers to distribute the shot, it is also true that every mayor in almost every municipality across the county, if not the world, has been doing the same.
What is false is the image of imminent danger the minority of the population that remains unvaccinated is to those who are vaccinated. This divide and conquer attempt at inducing fear is as pathetic as it is disturbing.
All the vaccinated (myself included) must remember that in Hoboken over 80 percent of those 30 and older are fully vaccinated – numbers that do not include those who have natural immunity (which is believed to last longer) due to previous Covid-19 infection.
Statistically the unvaccinated present almost an absolute zero chance of Covid related threat to those who are vaccinated. In fact, the chances of getting run over by an out-of-control bicyclist or driver on Washington St is likely greater.
The fear mongering, virtue signaling, next level hypocrisy, double standards, and messianic complex of Mayor Bhalla must end.
Not only is he wrong in attempting to instill a sense that the sky is falling in the Hoboken public – it isn’t, but we are at the safest time in Hoboken since COVID-19 began.