Sen. Tom Cotton Has Appropriate Response to NYC Mayor Eric Adams' 'Solution' to Masked Crime

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer

Both New York Gov. Kathy Hochul and New York City Mayor Eric Adams, both Democrats, have recently taken to bragging about alleged strides the state and city have made respectively in combating crime.


But though “NYPD crime stats for February of this year compared to February of last year’s show a 5.6 percent decline,” store and shop owners in the Big Apple aren’t feeling the change.

In fact, the murder of a clerk inside a New York deli last Friday, with the alleged hazmat suit-wearing perp suspected of committing other robberies in the area, underscores the fact that the people in the affected communities do not feel safe.

That murder, along with a string of other crimes committed by masked suspects (as shown below), understandably has people upset and demanding answers from Adams and the NYPD.

Adams’ response? Advising businesses to not allow people inside unless they take off their masks first:

Not long ago, New Yorkers were required to wear a face mask if they wanted to enter a store. But Mayor Eric Adams has now said the city’s shopkeepers should adopt the opposite approach: People who refuse to pull down their mask when they first come into a store should be barred, in case they plan to rob the place.

“We are putting out a clear call to all of our shops, do not allow people to enter the store without taking off their face mask,” the mayor said in a radio interview on 1010 WINS on Monday. “And then once they’re inside, they can continue to wear it if they so desire to do so.”


Requiring shoppers to briefly drop their face masks would allow security cameras to get a clear view of a shopper’s face, the mayor said. And if a shopper refused to comply, Mr. Adams said store employees would know to keep an eye on them because “if someone is violating the basic rules, they may be there to violate a substantial rule as to commit a crime.”


Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) responded accordingly:

And there is no doubt that they are indeed fleeing New York City – in droves.

It’s fascinating to hear Adams saying what he did about mask-wearing considering that at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, one argument Republicans made against mandating masks was due to the fact that criminals would use the mandates to commit crimes while “legally” wearing masks inside of stores. Those arguments were rejected by The Usual Suspects on grounds that they were a flimsy excuse to try and get people out of doing their supposed civic duty by wearing a mask to keep themselves and others safe.

But as readers will recall, the mask mandates didn’t just set off a debate about whether or not they could effectively keep people from catching the virus; they also frustrated local businesses that were put in the unenviable position of having to self-police their customers, which led to many well-publicized conflicts that escalated into shouting matches and in some cases violence.

Taking into account the fact that a criminal is going to do what criminals do whether they’re wearing a mask or not – including assault any shop owner or worker who confronts them about mask-wearing, it seems like a risky move for Adams to advise them to tell customers they have to pull their masks down before they enter the establishment, and to monitor anyone who won’t.


The good thing is that at least it’s not mandated (anymore) that store employees have to ask patrons to mask up or leave. The bad thing here, though, is that Adams’ advice could end up backfiring and hurting people in the process.

I pray I’m wrong and that this actually helps catch perps in the act without anyone getting hurt, but I’m not optimistic.

Related: Democrat Heartbreak on Capitol Hill as Joe Biden Hands GOP a Gift Ahead of ‘Soft on Crime’ Debate


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