Phil’s Steaks Declared A Terrorist Threat By The FDNY?

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse for food trucks… according to an article on Gizmodo yesterday, the NYC Fire Department has declared food trucks to be a legitimate terrorist threat. I mean while we’re at it, why don’t we ban all delivery trucks too. Couldn’t any of these be carrying lots of propane or drive through a building or wreak just as much havoc as a food truck? At best, singling out food trucks seems like just another attempt by the city to get food trucks off the street.  At worst, it kind of reeks of racism. Unsurprisingly they use incorrect facts to exaggerate the problem, claiming that there are 3100 food truck permits, when in fact there are 3100 total food vendor permits, and the majority of those are used on carts not trucks. The best part is their “internal use document” shows photos of trucks like Phil’s Steaks, Rickshaw Dumpling, and Kelvin Slush, as if these are the trucks they’re talking about.

Do we need to remind the FDNY that it was a Muslim street vendor who pointed out that car bomb to police a few years ago in Times Square?


  • Laughable at best. I saw this yesterday, and that powerpoint looks like it was made by a 6th grade, and on top of that their conclusions could be applied to any truck, not just food, on the street.

    Way to hype some more fear assholes.

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    It’s like everyone forgot about the rental truck that was used in the 1993 attacks.

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    Slightly reckless of you to accuse the FDNY of racism. Exactly who are they racist against? I didn’t know Food Truck was a race. If anything, there are more Asian and White food truck vendors than there are Muslims.

  • It’s a silly grasping at straws. By their reckoning the homeless are a terrorist threat.

    Also, thank you for using wreak and reek correctly.

  • That’s that bullshit. And this goes for both sides of this ‘argument.’

    Okay, yes, this was put together by/for the FDNY Center for Terrorism and Disaster Preparedness, but this could have been taken completely out of context. These are just bullet points. No one here knows what was actually said during those meetings. These trucks are still as legitimate a threat as Ryder rental trucks and smoking Nissan Pathfinders. Gizmodo are the ones scaremongering. FDNY are just doing their due diligence.

    Also, stop viewing everything through a prism of racism. You are in New York City. You should know better.

  • So what kind of food would the al-Qaeda truck serve? al-Shabab Kabobs? Zarqawi Zliders? Jihad Juice?

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    To the people who are questioning the racism card being brought up do you, honestly, believe that this would have even been an issue with the FDNY if all the food vendors in NYC were white Americans?

    I mean what’s next? That the NYPD’s subway stop and frisk aren’t racially/ethnically motivated either?

    • Mandatory ID cards.


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      Wow, that’s quite the hypothetical …but let’s all be honest, never mind realistic.

    • Based on our recent history and the testimonies of people who believe they have been racially profiled, yes, it would be a bit absurd (to me) to believe the FDNY would label truck owners as terrorists if they were all white. However, the absurdity only serves to diminish your perception of their level threat. The risk, albeit miniscule, of these carts exploding or being used for acts of terrorism is still the same as it always has been.

      Crying racism is misguided because you’re already assuming all terrorists are a certain race. This has more to do with taxes, fearmongering, and unjust persecution of something we food-lovers love than racism. And it would have remained that way if you all hadn’t peppered this post with it.

      • Not racism, but there is definitely something amiss here.

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        >Crying racism is misguided because you’re already assuming all terrorists are a certain race.

        We are not assuming this, the FDNY are which is why they included this bullet point in their power point presentation in the first place. We are just calling it for what it is, racism. You, otoh, are pointing fingers at the wrong people.

        Acknowledging how American society likes to treat and regard entire groups of people simply based on race/ethnicity isn’t being racist. It’s called not being ignorant. Example: Assuming that all people of Latin descent are ‘illegals’ is racist & ignorant. Otoh, acknowledging that people are quick to assume that anyone of Latin descent is an ‘illegal’ even when they are not ISN’T racist. The latter is accepting the reality of the situation at hand as opposed to the aforementioned.

        So if you are going to point fingers at least point them in the right direction. Otherwise it would seem, that you are giving the FDNY the benefit of a doubt rather than the people who are being targeted.

      • Your breakdown of minutia in my poorly worded response still doesn’t take away from the fact that brianhoffman is assuming the FDNY are being racist because they used the word ‘terrorism.’

        To carry on the pedantry, I’ve already pointed my fingers where I intended to — straight at the people reporting on this story who play up what they perceive to be a racially motivated presentation.

        Race was never an issue in the first place. It was added to make things seem worse than they really are; it;s just one more level of sensationalism thrown in to rile us up. I’m calling the press out on their knee-jerk cries of racism.

  • Death by cheesesteak…at an elderly age would not be so bad.

    Maybe they have no love for “healthy” portions of street food. Just like how they want to control our soda intakes.

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    Access and long duration stays? Anyone they are serving will have access to wherever these food trucks are and can stay as long as they’d like, so anyone who eats at a food truck would be considered a terrorist threat as well. The problem isn’t weather this is only a bullet point presentation, or how seriously it’s taken so much as the dangerous precedent things like this can set. We have to be really careful going into the future that certain things aren’t worded in a way that exploit us and our freedoms, this is definitely a step in the wrong direction, whether the concern is real or not.

  • The NYPD and other agencies who are fighting the so called “war on terror” are in many ways taking action that i believe is unconstitutional BUT….i think targeting food trucks is all about getting rid of the competition. Don’t believe me? Look at this link below:,0,6041707.story

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    >Race was never an issue in the first place.

    To think, all this time so many people were under the impression and have been declaring that the war on ‘terror’ was racially motivated and just another excuse to racially profile another group of nonwhites. Glad you proved them wrong.

    • You were doing so good with being informative. Not sure why you moved on to confirmation bias, citing, of all things, occurrences of groupthink. Also loved the arg. ad hominem cherry on top.

      I guess we’re done here. Thanks for playing along.

  • Greater danger here is not the terrorist threat from the trucks themselves but the terrorism they propagate…

    Food truck lunches are dispensed to hundreds of asymptomatic carriers who then disseminate biohazardous bomblets throughout midtown, including but not limited to, sulphuric gas release, torrents of poisonous diahrrea and explosive excreatory cathartheses

    A nefarious scheme… be careful out there

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