A Brief History
One year ago today, on February 2, 2014, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio fumbled the unfortunate groundhog Charlotte, dropping the marmot on her head during a Groundhog Day ceremony.
Typical of politically-staged events, the lies started right away when the groundhog was called “Chuck,” when in reality it was a female named Charlotte who had been provided for the event by the Staten Island Zoo. Bad enough the public saw the mayor drop the hapless rodent, but the lies continued when the poor animal died about a week later. Although a necropsy revealed the cause of death to be injuries from being dropped, the zoo kept that information from the mayor’s office and the public, reporting the critter had died of “old age.”
The zoo reportedly plans on using Charlotte’s daughter as the 2015 “Staten Island Chuck.” For information about Groundhog Day, please read our article “First Groundhog Day Celebration in Punxsutawney.”
Of course, Mayor de Blasio also fumbled other things in 2014, notably his relationship with the New York Police Department, but that is another story…
Question for students (and subscribers): Do you think de Blasio was a good mayor? Please let us know in the comments section below this article.
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For more information, please see…
Viteritti, Joseph P. The Pragmatist: Bill de Blasio’s Quest to Save the Soul of New York. Oxford University Press, 2017.