Volume 22, Number 21 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | October 2 - 8, 2009
Chinatown protestors at Bloomberg event
Mayor Michael Bloomberg could avoid seeing the protestors in Chinatown this week, but he couldn’t avoid hearing them.
When word spread that Bloomberg was going to host a free breakfast for seniors at the Jing Fong Restaurant Tuesday morning as part of his reelection campaign, the Civic Center Residents Coalition and other Chinatown groups decided to stage a protest. They gathered about 100 people outside Jing Fong on Elizabeth St., waving signs reading “Chinatown Not For Sale” and chanting “Dump Bloomberg.” Some of the protestors’ top concerns are the closure of Park Row after 9/11, the Chatham Square street reconfiguration plan and the over-development of Chinatown.
Bloomberg skirted the protestors by pulling up to the restaurant’s back entrance, but a few of the demonstrators followed him around and started yelling at him there, said Paul Lee, a neighborhood activist.
“Bloomberg just cruised right in,” Lee said. “He looked very stern. He didn’t look like a happy camper.”
Inside, nearly 1,800 people gathered to eat breakfast and meet Bloomberg, his campaign said. The campaign did not directly address the protest, but said in a statement that the event was a success and that Bloomberg hopes to win Chinatown on Nov. 3.