Mayor Bloomberg announced today after meeting with a delegation of Aztec Priests, representing the Mexican-American community, that he will allow them to use the Observatory deck of the Empire State Building to perform their religious Chalchihuatl ceremony. During the ceremony, West 33rd Street between 5th and 6th Avenues will be closed to all traffic, and a Sanitation Department cleaning crew will be standing by to clean West 33rd Street. The mayor acknowledges that his critics will claim he is permitting human sacrifice. However, the mayor believes the First Amendment (freedom of religion) gives the Aztec Priests the right to perform the Chalchihuatl ceremony. The mayor pointed out that a live person will not be thrown to street since the ritual requires a beating heart be cut out before the body is discarded.

This is a follow up to last week's announcement that Mormons would be exempt from the bigamy laws. Mormons will be issued as many marriage licences as they wish and there will be no restrictions on the age of the brides.

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