Urban Dove Charter School, a sort of 2nd chance charter school for students that fail the 9th grade, is currently experiencing a type of racism that no one wants to discuss. The Orthodox Jewish folks in Crown Heights Brooklyn does not wish to this school with its demographics in their neighborhood. A recently released article captures the sentiment of the Orthodox Jewish community perfectly.
Urban Dove Mission.
Why are you going so hard for this school?
Honestly, I knew very little about the school. But after researching it more, it began to appeal to me. The city I grew up in is very sports orientated. Many people that made it out, did so by utilizing an athletic gift. I’m thinking about what if my town had an Urban Dove? It could have quite possibly changed the trajectory of a lot of people in my city and gave them a chance at life. Here’s more info on Urban Dove Charter School.
Moreover, this goes way beyond the type of racism that you may think. It brings you back to the Civil Rights Movement and the vitriol racism blacks faced by whites in the South. But let’s remember this is NYC. The progressive North is usually responsible for subtle versions of racism. The type of racism that you know is there but often hides under layers of formalities and nuance. Whereas the Overt Southern racism is the type of racism that figuratively punches you in the face, and is all too obvious.
Nigger Boy Email.
The following is an email that was sent to the inbox of the Empire Charter Consultants group. Now, I have to warn you, as someone that was born in the South, I have never heard or saw the words “Nigger Boy” used together. I have heard of stories, but this is a first for me. Orthodox Jews feel about black students from Urban Dove inhabiting a space in Brooklyn. If roles reversed, this would surely have the optics of a hate crime. These kids want a good education, and they deserve it.
No one (regardless of race or creed) should be able to stop this. It is beyond me why the Jewish community feels this way about Black kids. These racist underpinnings may be deeper rooted than a simple eye test.
These are Kids.
However, my point is these are kids. And the response and actions to deny these black students access to space based on the fact that they are black are beyond racist.
These kids have already fallen through the cracks. Their focus needs to be on schooling and credit recovery. Orthodox Jews that live in the community should accept and embrace these students. This story should be getting a lot more attention than it is receiving. It is a painful reminder of how insignificant blacks are in the lens of others.