In a protest of Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo's resurgent coronavirus lockdowns, a Buffalo gym owner staged a "protest inside" Friday, and the gathering told Sheriffs deputies and a health inspector to "get out."
The tense exchange was recorded and posted on social media, but the officials were forced to leave and no arrests were made, The Buffalo News reported.
"It absolutely was a protest – inside my building," California Road gym owner Robby Dinero, a Marine who served three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, told the News.
After rejecting the officials' presence and accusing them of trespassing, the group at the gym chanted, "Get out, get out!" the video shows.
"I called this meeting together so we could protest the closing of small businesses, the handpicking of winners and losers," Dinero added to the News.
Gov. Cuomo has ordered "high-risk" businesses like gyms, barbershops, and salons to shutter, including in Erie County's "orange zone," where this gym is located.
Dinero has already been threatened by local officials earlier this year during pandemic shutdown orders, he told the News, including shutting off his utilities and threatening his occupancy permit.
"What kind of tactics are those?" Dinero lamented to the News.
The state Health Department is preparing a Monday news conference to respond to the protest and others, including Thanksgiving orders issued by Gov. Cuomo.
"We are gathering information and will have more to share in our press conference on Monday," Health Department spokeswoman Kara Kane wrote to the News in an email.
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