An unmasked straphanger berated an older woman on a Q train in an apparent dispute over his lack of a face covering, according to video.
“I wish the police would come and give you a $50 fine,” the woman can be heard telling the man at the outset of the undated video, which was filmed by an Instagram user and posted to the site Monday.
A man getting into an argument with a woman who asked him to put on a mask on the Q subway train.Subway DJ/Instagram
Masks are required on public transit by federal law. In New York, refusing to mask-up on MTA trains and buses is a $50 violation.
The man replies with a mocking squeal as he leans over the lady, “I’m so afraid.”
The woman replies, “Please get away from me, sir.”
This spurs her adversary to chant, “1776!” for the year America was founded.
“Respect your elders!” she fires back, to which he replies, “I respect freedom!”
MTA Acting Chairman Janno Lieber on Monday called the man “completely out of line.
“This is outrageous. No. 1, the guy is a jerk. Every New Yorker who gets on the subway knows one of the first principles is you treat other people respectfully,” Lieber said when asked about the video during an unrelated press conference in The Bronx.
“This is an incredible, egregious violation of basic human respect,” he said.
The MTA’s most recent survey of subway mask usage, conducted July 26 to Aug. 6, found that 14 percent of riders were not wearing face coverings, according to the authority’s Web site — up from just 2 percent in surveys conducted in March, April and May.
MTA Acting Chairman Janno Lieber said that the man in the video was “completely out of line.”Subway DJ/Instagram
“We’ve had great success with mask compliance,” Lieber insisted. “We’re going to make sure that mask compliance happens. We’re not going to yield any ground to people who want to bring whatever political ideology or theory they have … into our system.”