San Francisco Mayor London Breed defended her actions of last week where she went out to a nightclub and didn't wear her mask in spite of her own health orders requiring San Franciscans to mask indoors when not eating or drinking.
"Like, we don't need the fun police to come in and try and micromanage and tell us what we should or shouldn't be doing," Breed said in her defense. She went on to say that she "got up and started dancing because I was feeling the spirit. And I wasn't thinking about a mask. I was thinking about having a good time."
After video showed Breed dancing maskless with friends at The Black Cat, a famous San Francisco venue, she was unapologetic throughout her interview on the subject with a local news outlet.
According to the mask mandate in effect in San Francisco and instituted by Breed herself, it's a requirement that "everyone wear a well-fitted mask in indoor public buildings even if they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, except while actively eating or drinking."
"I had a good time at the Black Cat," Breed said in response to questions. "And I think it's sad that this is even a story. The fact is, there was something that was really monumental that occurred. And that is Tony, Toni, Tone, the original members, the brothers... who have not performed in public where I believe, at least over 20 years, they are just really some of the most incredible artists in the history of this country and the Bay Area in particular."The fact that that is getting lost here is very unfortunate." For Breed, the occasion warranted the violation of masking protocols.
"From my perspective," Breed said, "you know, I was there, I was eating, and I was drinking, and I was sitting with my friends, and everyone who came in there was vaccinated. So the fact that we have turned this into a story about being maskless, no, I'm not gonna sip and put my mask on sip and put my mask on sip and put my mask on, eat put my mask on. While I'm eating, and I'm drinking, I'm gonna keep my mask off. And yes, and in time, while we're drinking like everyone else there. We were all having a good time. And again: all vaccinated."
"So the fact that this is even a story is sad," Breed said, highlighting the newly allowed live performances that are making are return to the city. "This is now a distraction," she went on to say. "And I would hope that people would spend more time on enjoying San Francisco... And less about something that shouldn't even be a story in the first place."
As to how people are interacting with the reopened venues, Breed said "When you enter these venues, people are going to drink, people have to be vaccinated. And so it doesn't mean that like, you know, like sip and drink, that that is just not realistic. And when you go to restaurants, I was at a restaurant, same thing. I'm leaving my mask down while I'm enjoying my food. I'm not putting it on and taking it off putting it on, people are not doing that. So when that's just not realistic, you all know it's not realistic."
Breed said her message was that people should go out and patronize the venues in San Francisco, and that they must be vaccinated in order to do so.
"Go out and enjoy yourself," she said. "Make sure you are vaccinated because of the requirements. But don't feel as though you have to be micromanaged about mask wearing. Like, we don't need the fun police to come in and try and micromanage and tell us what we should or shouldn't be doing. We know what we need to do to protect ourselves."
"No one has been more conservative about protecting themselves than I have. Not just because I want to set an example, but because I don't want to get COVID and I know many people feel the same way. So let's focus on what's most important: that is getting reopened, supporting our nightlife enjoying our great city. Getting back to the normal we once enjoyed and having a good time," Breed said.
She was asked a final question about the video of her dancing. A reporter asked about this statement: "A video shows a massless Breed neither seated at a table nor positioned at a stationary counters standing and dancing without any food or drinks in her hand. She also posed for photos while not wearing a mask."
"Okay, so just to be clear," Breed said, "I was sitting at my table and... I got up and started dancing because I was feeling the spirit. And I wasn't thinking about a mask. I was thinking about having a good time. And in the process, I was following the health orders."
Then Breed pointed fingers at others who were not following her health orders. "Not to mention," she said, "the Chronicle reporter who walked up to me had no mask in sight. When I took the picture, as I do in any case, or do an interview. Yes, I take my mask off. When I want to take a picture. I don't need to—I'm vaccinated. I don't need to wear a mask and take a picture every single time I don't want to.
"But at the same time," she said, "I'm being careful to not only protect myself and to protect other people, this is nitpicking. This is really unfortunate. And let me tell you, when the spirit moves you because you are watching history in the making Bay Area royalty perform. I don't know about you, but I'm not going to turn around and look for where my mask is, or look to see and make sure I'm picking up a drink. I'm just going to let the spirit move me."