BALTIMORE, Md. (WJZ) — Baltimore Mayor Jack Young hopes President Donald Trump changes his mind about visiting Baltimore’s Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine this Memorial Day and instead remains at home.
The White House announced President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump would be visiting Baltimore on Monday.
Young said he wished the President would set a better example as Baltimore remains under a stay-at-home order due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“The City of Baltimore remains under a Stay at Home order that was put in place to help safeguard our residents from the dangers associated with COVID-19,” He said. “We have worked closely with our health professionals to educate the public about the benefits of social distancing and staying home, unless leaving for an essential reason, like visiting a doctor or picking up groceries.”
Trump deciding to pursue non-essential travel sends the wrong message to residents, Young said, many of whom have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 virus.
“I wish that the President, as our nation’s leader, would set a positive example and not travel during this holiday weekend,” Young added.
He added that the President’s visit also requires personnel and equipment at a price tag the city “can’t afford to shoulder” as its dealing with a loss of $20 million per month.
“I would hope that the President would change his mind and decide to remain at home. If he decides, however, to move forward with his scheduled trip to Baltimore we will, of course, be prepared for his visit,” Young said.
Gov. Larry Hogan won’t be meeting up with the President at Fort McHenry Monday as Memorial Day also marks the governor’s birthday, which he’s like to spend with his family.
Hogan’s office issued this statement about the President’s visit to Maryland:
“We are honored that the President and the First Lady have chosen to spend Memorial Day at Fort McHenry. Although Marylanders are encouraged not to gather in large numbers this year – now more than ever – it’s important to reflect on the American heroes who sacrificed their lives for our freedom. Monday is the governor’s birthday, and he has plans to mark the day at home with his family.”
The White House said the Trumps would be coming to Fort McHenry “to honor the American heroes who have sacrificed their lives serving in the US Armed Forces.” The hoisting of the American flag after the fort defended Baltimore Harbor during the War of 1812 inspired the poem that came to be known as “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
The President and First Lady will be joined by Defense Secretary Mark Esper; Interior Secretary David Bernhardt; Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and military ceremonial units.
On Thursday, two Osprey aircraft and Marine One were seen practice landing at Fort McHenry ahead of the president’s arrival Monday.
WJZ’s Chopper 13 was over the scene.
Some Associated Press reporting was used in this article.