After recent protests at the Hampton homes of figures such as New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, real estate developer Stephen Ross, and CEO Steven Schwarzman, the New York Post reports that many wealthy Hampton residents are hiring security guards to “protect” themselves (and their homes). The co-founder of one security consulting company, Charlie McArdle, says that business in the Hamptons has been on the rise ever since the shut-down first started. According to McArdle, his customers were worried about burglaries as unemployment started to rise months ago, and now their concern has shifted to protestors.
“My clients range from the 1 percenters to people who are concerned about the political climate and what’s going on today,” McArdle said.
“We make sure there are no trespassers when they are away from their homes and when they are in them too.”
Concerned about the political climate? I know a dog-whistle when I read one.
It’s laughable to think that any of the millions of people who have been laid off across the country would decide to spend their free time planning to burglarize a home in the Hamptons, instead of, I don’t know, trying to find a way to feed their families and pay rent in the midst of a global pandemic. Also, if he’s working in the Hamptons, I’m pretty sure most of McArdle’s clients are “one-percenters”.
“The protesters are so crazy,” said one Hamptonite, who declined to be named. “I first hired armed guards around two weeks ago, when the protests began, and put a fence around my property to defend it. This is happening all over the country.”
Hmmm, no wonder this person declined to be named. I can’t possibly imagine why people would be coming to protest near your home when, instead of even pretending to care about the reasons for the protests, your response is to put a fence up around your property and hire armed guards to intimidate them. Considering the protests are about police brutality and the prison industrial complex, it’s telling that the response of those with wealth and power was to hire private armed guards to protect their property... even if they’re not currently living at that property.
But it’s not just Hamptonites who are having their privileged peace and quiet disrupted by protestors. Earlier this week, people began protesting outside of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’s home in Washington D.C., placing a guillotine on his front yard with a sign that reads “Support our poor communities, not our wealthy men.”
Perhaps the rich really should be scared.