‘We are being subjugated’: Mac’s Public House protest draws large crowd to Grant City

SI Live

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Twenty-four hours after the owner of Mac’s Public House was led away in handcuffs for allegedly refusing to close his pub during the pandemic, a large crowd of Staten Islanders assembled outside the Grant City establishment to protest the state’s coronavirus restrictions.

A crowd of about 60 began assembling just after 5 p.m., with many carrying American flags and signs. One read: “Lock up criminals, not Americans.”

By the time the rally’s program started after 6 p.m., the crowd had swelled to several hundred, and a portion of Lincoln Avenue in front of the establishment was closed to traffic due to the crowd.

Protesters sang “God Bless America” as the rally’s 6 p.m. start time neared. The crowd also sang the chorus of “We’re Not Gonna Take It,” by Twisted Sister.

One man, Michael, a Westerleigh resident, carried an American flag upside down, a sign the nation is in distress.

“We are being subjugated by our own government,” he said.

News helicopters hovered over the demonstration and there was a large media presence.


“To me this is a revolution,” said Christine Salica of Westerleigh, a make-up artist who has been out of work since March. “[Gov. Andrew] Cuomo and his legislators are collecting our paychecks and they are putting us out of work.”

One man in the crowd barked at members of the Sheriff’s office posted outside the restaurant.

“I hope your pensions work,” he said. “You sold out your own people. You are enforcing the laws of the same guy who spits on you.”

Controversial artist Scott LoBaido, who has been a visible presence at Mac’s Public House as the controversy heated up in recent days, spoke to the crowd shortly after 6 p.m.

“Patriotism is not just hanging your flags out on the Fourth of July,” he said. “You know what’s patriotism? This is f***ing patriotism.”

He led the crowd in a chants, including “Fight!” and “Don’t give up the ship!”


Mac’s Public House first found itself at the center of controversy when it said on Nov. 20 that it planned to continue indoor dining despite being in a state-designated coronavirus micro-cluster orange zone, where it is illegal.

Tension between the restaurant and state officials erupted Tuesday night when the Sheriff’s office executed a law-enforcement action and arrested owner Danny Presti and issued a partial vacate order for the business.

Keith McAlarney, who owns the tavern with Presti, was not taken into custody.

“That was a first,” Presti said of his arrest. “I probably have 15 fines in my pocket right now. I don’t even know what they’re for.”

Presti spoke to the crowd at about 6:45 p.m.

“We are a community,” he said. “We take back Staten Island tonight. We take all the states back. This is how we take our country back.”


The drama at Mac’s Public House had continued earlier on Wednesday when state Sen. Andrew Lanza was restrained and nearly arrested for trying to enter the restaurant despite the partial vacate order.

Lanza was told only lawyers representing the business were allowed to enter. He hastily arranged a deal to offer his services free of charge, but was told that wasn’t sufficient.

“I took a step toward the door, so they started to grab me and I said ‘OK, I won’t go in,’” he said.

As he addressed the crowd on Wednesday evening, Lanza said “the city is in a death spiral.”

“We want to be safe. But we deserve the truth too,” he said.

He said that Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo split the borough in half when he designated zones as part of his micro-cluster strategy, and noted that the half with more severe restrictions — the orange zone — is on the South Shore, where representation is Republican.

Councilman Joseph Borelli and Assemblyman Michael Reilly also addressed the crowd, and Congresswoman-elect Nicole Malliotakis was patched in by phone.


5 thoughts on “‘We are being subjugated’: Mac’s Public House protest draws large crowd to Grant City

  1. As good as this feels, I look at the crowds and see a whole lot of fks wearing Masks…..??? I mean really, so they actually believe there is a COVID-Pandemic Threat???

    It defies common sense, if you believe there is a real pandemic, then you should be out there supporting your slave masters, not claiming you are or are going to Rebel and then Strapping on your fkn mask…!

    There is no threat it is a Flase flag event. The NWO has gone into Motion forward. Thats all.

    Time for Rebellion, now if all these crowds would arm up and then open the business and await a response, i don’t think there would be one, Like Bundy ranch, they’d stand down until the threat on them dissipates, the trick is to not let that happen.

    Open it every day & have more and more armed folks show up. Just saying! but they going the Legal route, yeah, that’ll work!

  2. I’m waiting to see a sign that says ‘kill a commie for mommy’
    Do these people even understand ?

    1. Do these people even understand ?

      Sadly, their insignificant epiphanies will only be realized when faced by the the Point of Hollow.
      But it will be too late.
      Life will be spilled out as Scarlet.

  3. Now some products are saying they help stop the virus that causes COVID-19.
    So if something causes COVID what is the definition of COVID-19?

    Kind of like hiv aids.

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