Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot [D] attempts to crack down on people who violate the city and state’s ‘Stay-at-Home’ order despite violating the order herself back in early April when she visited a stylist for a haircut.
Over the weekend, the mayor called a news conference at “Springfield Avenue and Adams Street in the East Garfield Park neighborhood, where police were tipped off that a large party was planned for Saturday night,” CBS Chicago reported. Lightfoot took a harsh tone and even harsher message to residents who either had violated the stay at home order or were planning on doing so.
“We are not playing games. We mean business. The time for education into compliance is over. Don’t be stupid,” the mayor said as she noted compliance for the order dropped from 82% to 77% over the last week. Nationwide, NPR reported social distancing and stay-at-home compliance dropped from an Easter high of 50% to 37% in late April.
“I’m not going to allow any individuals to upend the progress. I can’t make this any clearer. You absolutely must stay home, and that means your home, not somebody else’s home, not an Airbnb.”
Laying out potential consequences for violators, CPD superintendent David Brown said, “CPD has the ability to arrest offenders that adamantly refuse to observe the stay-at-home order,” he said. “We’ll be towing cars if necessary.”
Lightfoot took a much more direct and threatening message to the public, “we will shut you down. We will cite you, and if we need to, we will arrest you. And we will take you to jail.” The CPD is ready to detain and arrest individuals who willingly assemble in private quarters.
Lightfoot’s directive goes further than most state’s enforcement which draws the line at enforcing business closures and enforcing public space social distancing.
Lightfoot gave no indication of how long these draconian policies will be enforced, saying “we’re going to stay in the status quo as long as we need to.”
Ironically, Mayor Lightfoot said, “your actions are going to make a difference whether we get out sooner or later, whether we have a summer or not.” Adding that going out to non-essential businesses during the pandemic will only prolong the outbreak. I say ironically because when the pandemic was just beginning to ramp up in April, Mayor Lightfoot visited a hair stylist for a haircut. Hair salons and barbers were shut down by the state as they’ve been designated “non-essential.”
According to NBC, a stylist who had done the Mayor’s hair “posted photos with the mayor on Facebook last weekend, thanking her for her hard work and saying she had the ‘pleasure of giving Mayor Lightfoot a hair trim.’” The stylist was wearing PPE in the photos.
Mayor Lightfoot said in defense of her own violation of the stay-at-home order, one which she later threatens violators of with jail time, “I’m the public face of this city. I’m on national media and I’m out in the public eye.” To divert attention, the Mayor added, “I think what really people want to talk about is, we’re talking about people dying here. We’re talking about significant health disparities. I think that’s what people care most about.”
While all of us want a haircut, Mayor Lightfoot thinks her hair falls under the same essential service designation which encompasses first responders, doctors, and food supply chain workers, which is a level of egocentrism few politicians can attain.