A Mexican food truck out of Buffalo, New York, came under fire for serving federal immigration agents outside an ICE building last week.
You read that right. A taco truck, whose sole purpose is to sell food to hungry people, found itself at the point of a public gun after they dared to hand certain people some tortillas and sour cream.
The New York Times reports the Lloyd taco truck, apparently a staple in immigrant-heavy Buffalo, was asked to park outside a certain building in Batavia around midday so the workers there could have Mexican food for lunch.
Unfortunately for this small business, that building was a federal detention center for immigration violators run by ICE, landing the food truck smack dab in the center of a social media maelstrom for agreeing to serve food – Mexican food, of all things – to immigration officers.
So the company did what most do these days when the lynch mob fires up their Twitter app: they apologized, saying in a lengthy statement that agreeing to park in front of a federal detention center showed a “lapse in judgment” and promising to never, ever, ever do such a horrendous thing again. The company also promised to donate the lunch profits to a local immigration advocacy organization.
We're sorry. pic.twitter.com/chKkSGwwBr— lloyd (@whereslloyd) October 24, 2019
In turn, that apology sparked a similar response from critics on the other side of the aisle, who slammed the company for caving to the outrage machine.
In what world does a company feel the need to apologize for serving food to federal law enforcement officers who work in dangerous conditions? Pathetic pandering. The men and women who work to enforce our immigration laws and protect us deserve better. https://t.co/0LUqpxrDZn— Rob Ortt (@SenatorOrtt) October 24, 2019
So the company apologized again -- this time, for offending law enforcement.
“We serve all communities, we go to all neighborhoods. We are not political. Why would we be?” Lloyd co-owner Pete Cimino, said at a news conference on Monday, the Times reported. “How can any business choose sides in our politically divided country and ever hope to succeed?”
“We make tacos, not war,” he said.
“Honestly, we were not prepared for the anger directed at us. It was surprising, and demoralizing,” Cimino added.
Thanks to the backlash – again, simply for serving some people tacos – the company has already lost business, being forced to cancel three catering visits. The Times reports the small business' Facebook page has already taken on more than 5,000 angry comments.
At this point, it seems pretty safe to say that the Pitchfork Brigade has gotten inexcusably out of control. National outrage over shoes and chicken sandwiches may be annoying, but when you start threatening the tacos, we've got a problem.