The Democrat mayor of Boston has claimed that patriots are driven by “hatred,” “fear, and confusion” when they chant “USA” and sing the Star-Spangled Banner.
Mayor Michelle Wu (D) made the remarks while speaking on Boston public radio.
She attacked the patriotism of demonstrators who had gathered at city hall earlier this week to protest her vaccine mandate.
The public voiced their opposition while she announced the new mandate that requires city workers to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and businesses to require patrons to be fully vaccinated as well.
The mayor also claimed that people are opposed to her strict measures because of anti-Asian sentiment.
“I’ve grown up my whole life knowing what it feels like to feel invisible or othered, and this is an experience that far too many Americans share,” Wu told GBH.
“Standing at the podium, hearing the demonstrators who were opposing our policies singing patriotic songs and chanting ‘USA’ — the message was clear that we don’t belong here in their eyes, and shouldn’t be trying to take away something that they perceive they have and are losing.”
On Monday, Wu announced a new string of vaccine mandates and was bombarded immediately by union protesters and city employees.
“It’s a very sad situation,” she continued.
“Because we’ve gotten so far from the American values that brought my family and so many families here, amidst tremendous sacrifice, to be part of this special place.”
Wu also said that it was wrong for protesters to equate being anti-vax with being patriotic.
“There is still a part of our society, even in this state, even in this city, that really feels like something is being taken away from them,” Wu also said.
“That is based in misinformation, it’s based in, I think at some level, hatred, and fear and confusion.”
Wu told Boston radio that she has experienced hateful messages online from users who called her a “communist.”
However, there was no evidence of racism at either Thursday’s rally or at the one earlier in the week at Boston City Hall.
While there were signs on Monday and Thursday calling Wu communist or comparing the mandate to communism, those are not jabs directed solely at Wu.
Those opposed to vaccine mandates across the country have compared the government restrictions to communism.
It should also be noted that the crowd of protesters Monday was diverse.
On Thursday morning, a separate protest formed outside of Boston Police Precinct Number 3, where Wu was scheduled to speak.
Chair of Boston Catholic Radio, Louis Murray, documented the protest:
In a moment that might undercut Wu’s claims that anti-vax mandate protests are done out of ignorance, Wu said that the city in part had to implement the mandate so that businesses that might have done so on their own would not face similar backlash.
Of course, that might indicate the protesters were motivated not by bigotry, but by opposing what some characterize as “forced” vaccinations and a dwindling of freedoms.