“#Pitchfork-wielding protesters descend on wealthy Hamptons estates”
July 1, 2020 | 7:18pm
More than 100 drivers and about 200 marchers paid a visit to the homes of some of the world’s wealthiest people, including ex-New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg.
“Tax the rich, not the poor!” the protesters chanted outside Bloomberg’s $20 million Southhampton mansion, with some calling the failed presidential candidate a “looter.”
Protesters, several who came in from the Big Apple, 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.
The group is taking issue with Cuomo’s pitch 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 and communities of color, the wealth of US billionaires has surged.
“Enough is enough — it’s time for New York State to raise taxes on the rich instead of cutting services for working people,” said Alicé Nascimento, Director of Policy & Research, New York Communities for Change, which helped organize the action.
Organizers also included the New York Taxi Workers Alliance, with about 40 medallion cabs taking part. The cabbies were already in a debt crisis before the virus emerged, and have been hard-hit by the pandemic.
They lead a chant of “No more suicides. No more bankruptcies,” at one point during the march.
Members of the Shinnecock Indian Nation also took part in the protest, including Rebecca Genia, who said in a statement that “Billionaires take our land to build golf courses and mansions, profit from the ravages of coronavirus, and exploit our labor.”
“It’s clear the real looters in New York are billionaires — and it’s time to make them pay their fair share so we can all thrive.”
The group also stopped by mansions owned by Blackstone CEO Steven Schwarzman and real estate developer Stephen Ross, and had planned to visit the estate of investor and hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb.
“Billionaires are experts in social distancing,” Nascimento told The Post. “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.”
Taking the protest to the wealthy enclave shows that, “We are here. We are affected and not going to stand down. We’re going to make sure our voices are heard.”
Additional reporting by John Roca
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