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Bagel Protest Plans to "Schmear" NYC Mayor

Bagel Protest Plans to "Schmear" NYC Mayor

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New York City HIV/AIDS activists plan to protest the annual World AIDS Day Bagel Breakfast to be held by Mayor Michael Bloomberg next month with a "schmear" campaign.

According to Housing Works, "dozens of outraged bagels," or activists, will picket the breakfast on December 1 outside the Brooklyn Public Library. Then the "bagels" will join the 24-hour vigil in City Hall park, where New Yorkers read the names of those lost to AIDS.

The angry activists intend to "schmear" the mayor, they say, for professing commitment to AIDS funding for the past three years at the breakfast, only to propose budget cuts shortly afterward that disproportionately threaten low-income New Yorkers living with the disease.

"Mayor Bloomberg is like Marie Antoinette. His attitude to poor people with AIDS is 'Let them eat bagels!'" said Housing Works CEO and president Charles King, who provided the middle name of "Sesame." "We bagels refuse to be implicated in the mayor's World AIDS Day hypocrisy. I invite all New Yorkers to join us on December 1."

Among their grievances, the activists say that Mayor Bloomberg pressured Gov. David Paterson this year to veto a bill that would have ensured that low-income people living with HIV spend no more than 30% of their salary on rent. The mayor and governor argued the city could not afford the measure. Activists, joined by out state senator Thomas Duane, staged a die-in last week to protest the veto.

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Bagel Protest Plans to "Schmear" NYC Mayor

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