Protesters descended on the wealthy Hamptons Wednesday to highlight the nation’s rising income inequality.
“More than 100 drivers drove around the community in Long Island and about 200 marchers, some wielding plastic pitchforks, paid a visit to the homes of some of the world’s wealthiest people, including ex-New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg,” the New York Post reported.
“We are here. We are affected and not going to stand down. We’re going to make sure our voices are heard,” protest organizer and director of policy and research for New York Communities for Change, Alicé Nascimento told the Post.
Pitch forks are out at @MikeBloomberg’s Hamptons house.
— New York Communities for Change (@nychange) July 1, 2020
“Tax the rich, not the poor!” protesters chanted outside former Democratic presidential candidate and billionaire Mike Bloomberg’s $20 million Southhampton mansion, with some calling the failed presidential candidate a “looter,” according to the Post.
“Enough is enough — it’s time for New York state to raise taxes on the rich instead of cutting services for working people,” Nascimento said.
The protesters demanded that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo raise taxes on the state’s 118 billionaires to make up for a steep revenue shortfall amid the coronavirus pandemic and disagreed with Cuomo’s plan to cut 20 percent in state funding from schools, hospitals and housing agencies. They noted that while the virus outbreak has deeply impacted low-income people and communities of color, the wealth of US billionaires has surged.
“Billionaires are experts in social distancing. They’ve chosen to live in their own world and are separate from realities of everyday people and the people whose lives they have a tremendous impact on,” Nascimento said.
The wealthy second home owners from New York are rushing to hire security guards to keep them safe in the Hamptons from the threat of unrest, The Post has learned.
Charlie McArdle, co-founder of CM Security Consulting, says business is booming in the moneyed enclave, and that he’s gotten a flood of calls after Thursday’s protests
“My clients range from the 1 percenters to people who are concerned about the political climate and what’s going on today,” McArdle said.
“We make sure there are no trespassers when they are away from their homes and when they are in them too.”
“The protesters are so crazy,” one Hamptonite told The Post and declined to be named. “I first hired armed guards around two weeks ago, when the protests began, and put a fence around my property to defend it. This is happening all over the country.”