GothamistThe last time we checked in with the newish East Harlem liquor store Freeland Liquor & Wine, the very vocal members of the Mount Morris Park Historic District had pressured the owners into getting rid of their bulletproof glass, and metal “riot gates,” which some neighbors deemed “ghetto” and bringing “down everything we are trying to build up.” So the owners of the store—who were also in trouble with the Buildings Department and Landmarks Commission—cooperated and got rid of the plexiglass. Then they got robbed. Twice. “If I had the other gate [in], this wouldn’t have happened,” owner Berihu Mesfin tells DNAinfo, referring to the riot gates that outraged some locals. “I put [in] the chain gates and they cut it. I put the chain gate again and they cut it,” he explained. “Now I’ll put [in] the metal gates.”

I don’t care what any Historic Districts have to say. I don’t care what the Building Department says. Don’t give one fuck what the Landmarks Commission says. If I own a liquor store in east Harlem, I’m having bulletproof fuckin everything in my store. Bulletproof glass covered in riot gates covered in Teflon doors. Whatever. Don’t care about the neighborhood or gentrification and whatever the locals are trying to “build up.” I’m trying to not get robbed and shot every night at closing.

Same thing goes for any White Castle or Popeye’s Chicken in Harlem as well.