[UPDATE: Restaurant owners Malcom Sanz and Otis Lockett offered an apology to DNA Info, telling the website that “It was supposed to be like ‘stop’ and get a drink; ‘stop’ and get something to eat,” and that “The only thing we wanted to promote was good food and good service, and unfortunately this has been an enormous distraction from what we are trying to do. It’s absolutely regrettable and we apologize.”]
Oh Brooklyn. One day you’re seeing a beautiful tribute to Eric Garner outside 40 Acres and a Mule’s production studio. Then today, word comes down from community activist Imani Henry that the above sign was featured outside Crown Heights’ Chop Chop Grub Shop (683 Nostrand Avenue) this past Sunday. Looks like someone there decided to draw inspiration from the NYPD for their latest adorable chalk sign, but beyond being in questionable taste, it also makes no goddamn sense. How on earth do you stop and frisk an appetite? Do they want us to harass and humiliate our appetites? Racially profile our appetites? Instill a climate of fear in our appetites? Come on, Chop Chop, we need more direction here!
We (and apparently plenty of other people) made repeated efforts to reach the owner of Chop Chop Grub Shop to learn how exactly one stops and frisks her appetite, as well as how the hell something “cute” like this ends up on a giant sign in the middle of a Crown Heights sidewalk, but have not heard from them yet.
An angry comment from one community member gives a good tone of the discussion:
“You need to publicly apologize for the cruelty of the sign you put out in front of your restaurant, to “stop and frisk your appetite.” This is racist at worst and insensitive at best. People have died because of stop and frisk in the very community where you operate. Suck it up and do what’s right: publicly apologize.”