Things have been exceedingly tense between New York mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York City Police Department following the shooting deaths of Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos. After Liu's funeral Sunday, that controversy extended to de Blasio's wife, Chirlane McCray, who NYPD officers accused of wearing disrespectfully wearing jeans to his service.
NYPD officers turned their backs on de Blasio as he spoke at both Ramos and Liu's funerals, fuming over what they see as his lack of support for police officers. And now, evidently, they're furious at McCray; a police source told the New York Daily News that she appeared to be wearing jeans at Liu's service on Sunday and "We found it disrespectful."
So disrespectful, in fact, that later that afternoon a meme was already circulating, blasting McCray, one that reads, "Nothing says disrespect like rocking jeans to a cops [sic] funeral."
But the News spoke to the designer of McCray's clothes, Anni Kuan; Kuan said the "jeans" were in fact slacks and a blazer. She called them "polished and elegant," but added, "In the photos, it does look like jeans."
City Hall has also been forced to issue a statement on Jeansgate, with de Blasio spokesperson Rebecca Katz telling the News, "The dark pantsuit the First Lady wore to Detective Liu's funeral was somber and appropriate," said Rebecca Katz, a de Blasio spokesman. "We should be talking about Detective Liu and his family, not fabric and fashion."
Besides fulminating against McCray's jeans, NYPD officers are also pretty clearly in the middle of a work slowdown following Liu and Ramos' deaths, as well as the non-fatal shooting of two officers in the Bronx. Officers have been issuing far fewer tickets and showing a lessened police presence in many parts of the city. Police union president Pat Lynch denies there's any kind of slowdown, writing in a statement, "Our members are out there doing their jobs and putting themselves in danger to keep this city safe just as they always do."
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