City of Philadelphia vs. storekeepers with protective-glass barriers

The city of Philadelphia may force certain storekeepers to remove protective-glass barriers in their stores, on the basis that such bullet-resistant glass is racially offensive by stereotyping customers as potential threats. (Story link here)

(Additional info: The vast majority of these shop owners are Chinese or Korean, and also according to the article and this additional linkhere, one Asian man was shot to death by robbers at a convenience store, another man was shot six times during a robbery at a deli, another storekeeper was attacked by a customer who flung bleach at him (but the bleach was blocked by protective glass), another store faced a theft and there were other attempted crimes, etc.)

IMHO, what the city is doing is essentially telling these storekeepers, “You need to make yourself vulnerable to robbery and violent attack.” Sure, the councilwoman who is pushing for this measure says that such stores could still protect themselves by installing cameras and hiring guards - but there’s a problem with that - cameras can watch for crime but won’t lift a physical finger to intervene and stop a crime in progress, while security guards cost a lot more money than bulletproof glass because their salary is a constant ongoing expense, whereas the protective glass is a fixed one-time expense - once it’s installed, it’s installed.

This councilwoman is the problem with poliricians. She’s more worried about people getting their feelings hurt than she is about thugs actually hurting people.

I have a thought Mrs. Moron Councilwoman, how about you go and work a few weeks worth of night shifts in one if those stores. Then let’s see if you change your opinion.

“Customers” are a protected class now?

That is just crazy talk.

How does protective-glass racially offend but not the presence of cameras and bodyguards?

From the Pennsylvania state constitution:

(my bold)

That would put a wrinkle in he city’s plans, and surely invite litigation.

Volokh on the topic:

That’s what I wondered, too. Here’s a quote from the second article:

If those barrier are a symbol of distrust, what do the metal detectors and body scanners at every single U.S. airport represent? Does it create alienation in air travelers who are good, but apparently can’t be trusted to not bring bombs and other contraband onto aircraft?

What about the metal doors that are put up outside of businesses to secure them? Or security bars on windows of residences? Don’t these things alienate members of a community because they represent distrust of one’s neighbors? Living in a high crime area doesn’t work on your psyche but these crime prevention tools do?

Just to be clear, the final bill removed the ban, as noted in this link within the cite linked to in the OP:

If I read the article correctly, they are targeting just one particular type of shop which they want to get rid of anyway because they don’t think they are good for the neighborhood.

So reading between the lines, the city council is hoping the shopkeepers will give up if it becomes too unsafe.

What’s a “beer deli” anyway? From the one picture I saw, it looks like a convenience store or “package store”.

Such strange rules about seats in a store. I guess they are the remnants of the anti-alcohol prohibition laws.

The amended bill leaves enforcement of unspecified new regulations up to city inspectors.

Meantime, the state could pre-empt any city regulation.

“A bill in the state legislature would counteract the city ordinance: State Rep. Todd Stevens (R–Montgomery County) is pushing legislation that would prohibit municipalities from making certain “workplace safety” decisions.”

I wonder if they’re like those crazy Pizza/Daiquiri places in New Orleans. They’re on pretty much ever corner, and sell pizza by the slice and they have these slurppy-type machines with different flavored daiquiris you can get.

From what I understand, the bulletproof partition bit is just a symptom. The real target is the places that are low end bars serving beer and shots and pretending to be restaurants. Obviously such places are mostly in poor neighborhoods and a source of and target for bad behavior. The whole bulletproof barriers are racist thing is a gross simplification.

They would hire guards who are black, thus free of racial biases and incapable of microagressions.

Although they have been loosened recently, Pennsylvania has had really restrictive alcohol-sales laws. Generally, I think beer for offsite consumption could only be sold in large quantities in specialized beer-distributor stores. Some sort of workaround to a loophole in the beer-sales laws has arisen in recent years involving grocery stores that have a table or two supposedly for serving meals on-site. I’m not exactly sure what a beer deli is, but my guess is that it’s a convenience store that similarly feints toward being a restaurant.

And the city might be okay with that, but I don’t it’ll past muster with the EEOC.

Presumably, an easier fix would be to address the licensing of these establishments as opposed to taking the stand that the owners of these establishments not be allowed to implement effective security measures. But would that be something the city can do or does it have to go through the state?

Pushed heavily by Sheetz, who wanted to sell alcohol in their gas stations due to their pre-existing freshly-prepared food sales. The first one, I think, where they managed to get approved for sales is a large location in Altoona.

That’s what I’m seeing. This isn’t really a racial issue. The City Council is trying to shut down a type of business that it doesn’t like.

But they’ve chosen a really bad way to go about it. Instead of just enacting laws to shut down the “beer delis” they’re apparently driving to drive them out of business indirectly by increasing the danger the employees in these businesses face.

The usual snowflakes are missing the actual story and making their complaints about how terrible it is that other people are snowflakes.