First, they came for pizza ovens. Now, they’re coming for ice cream trucks.
New York City Democrats have decided to take down what they’ve identified as the city’s—make that, the planet’s—biggest threat.
If you thought that meant that they were finally going to go hard after crime or ditch Manhattan’s soft-on-crime district attorney, Alvin Bragg, then the joke is on you for thinking they suddenly stumbled upon common sense.
No, they want to make sure it isn’t just cannabis trucks going green, but every ice cream truck in the city.
New York City Democrats have drawn up a proposal to force ice cream truck drivers to use solar or electric power for their vehicles, rather than fossil fuels. The bill would prohibit ice cream trucks from using “a generator or engine that is powered by any carbon-based fuel to provide electrical power for food equipment.”
Lincoln Restler, a member of the New York City Council from Brooklyn, introduced the measure.
The noise from ice cream trucks is being labeled a public nuisance. Fair enough. They do play an annoying tune over and over. But bad air quality?
The perpetual stench of marijuana that wafts through every public place in New York City—the smell of American decline—is apparently no big deal to city leaders, who would apparently rather have people do drugs than get ice cream from a non-“sustainable” truck.
“In the dog days of August, it’s hard to imagine more of a killjoy than putting one’s climate bull’s-eye on our iconic ice cream man, but behold, I give you Councilman Lincoln Restler,” said City Council Minority Leader Joe Borelli, a Staten Island Republican, according to the New York Post.
Remember when Democrats and their media allies kept insisting—evidence to the contrary notwithstanding—that they weren’t coming after gas stoves and all that nonsense? If you believed them, I have a sustainable, eco-friendly, biodegradable bridge to sell you in Brooklyn.
Restler’s proposal would likely take a bite—or perhaps a big Joe Biden lick, to be more precise—out of the ice cream truck business.
“You can’t even have solar in a home if you have trees that are too tall. How are you going to drive around the city and have a solar-powered truck in the concrete jungle?” Ice Cream Emergency owner Ed Lachterman, who is also a member of the Town Council in Yorktown, New York, about 45 miles north of the city, said on “Fox & Friends” on Monday. “It’s just ridiculous. You’re going to have product costs going through the roof.”
New York City, like many other cities in America, is dealing with several acute challenges. None of them involves ice cream.
The biggest issue is the explosion of crime in the past few years. New York experienced a huge increase in burglaries, assaults, and car thefts to begin the year. Liberal media sources keep trying to downplay the problem, but the fact that crime is elevated—though isn’t quite at all-time highs—is hardly something to celebrate or be proud of.
Another huge problem is the drug crisis. The latest craze is a sedative called xylazine, often called “tranq,” which, when mixed with fentanyl, frequently causes users to overdose. This new drug craze puts people in a stupor as they walk around the cities like zombies. It also causes their flesh to disintegrate like one.
New York’s “harm reduction” strategies aren’t working. Big surprise there.
Finally—and New York Democrats can thank their friends in the White House for this one—the city is now being overrun by illegal immigrants. There reportedly are plans to turn beautiful Central Park into a migrant camp, though New York City Mayor Eric Adams hasn’t committed to that drastic step quite yet.
These aren’t inherent, unavoidable “city” problems. I recently traveled to Poland and noticed that in addition to its cities having virtually no violent crime concerns, I didn’t see drugged out and mentally ill people lying all over the sidewalks.
If a country that went through half a century under the deprivation of communism can figure it out, then surely the richest, most powerful city in the richest, most powerful country in the world can figure things out, too.
Unfortunately, ideology trumps all else.
Instead of addressing the issues that really matter, New York City Democrats want to whack hardworking ice cream truck drivers with a big bill to make an at-best negligible reduction to carbon dioxide emissions.
Crushing the ice cream truck business isn’t necessarily the biggest issue in the grand scheme of things (although the 5-year-old me might have disagreed with that statement). Still, this petty legislation does say something about Democrats’ priorities.
Jarrett Stepman is a columnist for The Daily Signal. He is also the author of the book “The War on History: The Conspiracy to Rewrite America’s Past. This first appeared in the Daily Signal.