TONIGHT ON METROFOCUS

We explore the state of hate in the tri-state. Evan Bernstein, regional director at The Anti-Defamation League, joins us with some troubling statistics. As The Great American Read goes in search of heroes, we head to Harlem to learn more about literary giant and social activist, James Baldwin. Actress Edie Falco has played a mafia wife, an addicted nurse and now she’s taking the stage right here in Manhattan as “The True” political force. Edie is here with her insights into all of these roles. New York City has its Little Italy and its China Town, but are you ready for a spice of Little Haiti? Tonight, we take you inside this up-and-coming community.

Aired on September 25, 2018.

TRANSCRIPT

> TONIGHT ON METRO FOCUS, THE STATE OF HATE.

WE HAVE STATISTICS.

WE TRAVEL TO HARLEM TO LOOK AT THE LIFE OF LITERARY GIANT AND PASSIONATE SOCIAL ACTIVIST, JAMES BALDWIN.

ACTRESS SPDS EDY FALLCO HAS PLAYED -- SHE'LL JOIN US.

THEY HAVE THEIR LITTLE ITALY AND CHINA TOWN BUT DID YOU KNOW ABOUT HAITI IN OUR OWN BACKYARD?

THOSE STORIES AND MORE AS 'METROFOCUS STARTS STARTS RIGHT NOW.

THIS IS 'METROFOCUS' WITH JACK FORD, AND JENNA FLANAGAN.

IT'S MADE POSSIBLE BY JAMES AND MERYL TISH, SUE AND -- BERNARD AND IRENE SCHWARTZ, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG AND BY

GOOD EVENING AND WELL DOOM 'METROFOCUS'. SWASTIKAS AND HATE-FILLED MESSAGE SAID IN PUBLIC PLACES.

INTOLERANCE IN OUR REGION AND INDEED OUR COUNTRY.

ALL AGAIN ON THE RISE.

THE QUESTION REMAINING HOW BAD HAS IT GOTTEN AND HOW BAD MIGHT IT CONTINUE TO GET?

THERE WAS AN 87% INCREASE IN TOTAL INSTANCES IN NEW YORK STATE LAST YEAR AND EVEN LARGER DISTURBING UPTICK IN 90% INCREASE IN JEWISH CRIMES.

ALMOST TWO-FOLD FROM YEAR TO YEAR.

LONG ISLAND, UPSTATE, NEW JERSEY.

AND WHO EXACTLY IS BEHIND IT?

DAUNTING QUESTIONS.

BUT NOW THERE'S GOOD NEWS ON THE HUNT TO ROOT OUT THE HATE.

F THE ANTIDEFAMATION LEAGUE TO HELP STEM THE TIDE.

THE REGIONAL DIRECTOR.

ILI IT'S GOOD TO HAVE YOU BACK.

SEEMS WE HAVE MORE AND MORE DISTURBING NEWS TO TALK ABOUT.

I KNOW.

WE WERE TALKING BEFORE WE GOT ON THE AIR SOME INSTANCES IN THE PAST WEEK OR SO.

ITS TLR JEWISH HOLIDAYS AND YOU THINK HOPEFULLY THERE WOULD BE LESS ACTS OF HATE AND ANTI-SEMITISM AND IN THE LAST THREE DAYS ALONE SEEN SEVEN DIFFERENT INSTANCES IN NEW YORK AND NNL NJ.

WE HAVE A SUPERVISOR IN CHESTER, NEW YORK THAT MOD HORRIFIC ANTISIMETTIC STATEMENTS ABOUT JEWS MOVING TO HIS COMMUNITY AND WE HAD THE CEMETERY -- COUNTY ON THE DAY JEWS GO TO VISIT CEMETERIES AND VISIT THEIR LUBBED ONES, AN EXPLOSIVE DEVICE PUT ON ONE OF THE HEAD STONES.

THAT'S JUST A HANDFUL OF THINGS AND THAT'S IN THE LAST SEVEN DAYS.

THIS TREND HAS REALLY TAKEN PLACE SINCE THE ELECTION SEESZEN AND WE'VE SEEN THIS DRAMATIC UPTICK OF THESE ANTISIMETTIC INSTANCES.

SO MUCH OF HATE IS EMBOLDING PEOPLE TO DO CERTAIN THINGS AND WHETHER IT'S ANTI-SEMITIC OR LIES ABOUT MINORITY GROUPS, THEY'RE OUT THERE.

THEY'RE ABLE TO TAKE IT AND MAKE IT THEIR OWN VOICE AND THEY'RE SEE THING UPTICK AND -- ESPECIALLY THE WHITE SUPREMACIST GROUPS, THEY'RE TRYING TO FIND THE PEOPLE THAT ARE GOING TO ACT IN HATE, NOT IN GOOD AND THAT'S THE CHALLENGES WE'RE SEEING.

VERY HARD TO POLICE EVERYTHING ONLINE.

YOU JUST PAZZED THE ONE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF CHARLOTTESVILLE.

WERE YOU SURPRISED THERE DIDN'T SEEM TO BE ANYTHING --

I DON'T THINK WE'RE SURPRISED THE NUMBERS WEREN'T AS LARGE AS THEY WERE IN CHARLOTTESVILLE, SIMPLY BECAUSE SO MANY PEOPLE LOST THEIR JOBS IN CHARLOTTESVILLE.

THAT WAS THE LARGEST GATHERING IN WHITE SUPREMACISTS IN A 10-YEAR PERIOD.

WITH SOELCIAL MEDIA AND MASSIVE COVERAGE THE MEDIA PUT ON IT, MANY PEOPLE THAT ATTENDED LOST THEIR JOBS BECAUSE THEY WERE ATTENDING THIS WHITE SUPREMACIST RALLY.

THEY SAID WE'RE GOING TO TAKE OUR HATE, PUT IT ONLINE AND GO TO TWITTER, ON FACEBOOK AND WE'RE GOING TO PUSH, PUSH, PUSH TO GET AS MANY PEOPLE ACTVATED TOWARDS HATE IN THAT FASHION AND NOT THE PUBLIC SQUARE AND IT'S WORKING.

HAVE YOU SEEN AN UPTICK IN NOT JUST THE EXPRESSIONS OF HATE BUT THE EFFORTS TO RECRUIT NEW PEOPLE?

WE'VE HAD RECRUITMENT SINCE 17th OF SEPTEMBER, 17 DIFFERENT INSTANCES OF RECRUITMENT FLYERING.

AND THEY'RE -- IT'S A BROAD BASE, A WIDE NET THEY'RE TRYING TO CAST.

WE'RE NOT AS WORRIES ABOUT THE CONSTRUCTION GROUPS AND WE'RE WORRIED ABOUT THE LOAN WOLF THAT'S GOING TO GET ACTIVATED BY THAT FLYER.

HEAT MAP IS NOW AN EASY WAY FOR SOMEONE TO BE ABLE TO SEE WHERE THESE INSTANCES OF WHITE SUPREMACIST ACTIVITY ARE TAKING PLACE.

AND IF YOU LOOK THAT, I DON'T THINK THERE'S SURPRISE IT'S IN THE TRISTATE AREA, CONNECTICUT.

IT'S THE LARGEST AMOUNT OF JEWS THAT THERE HERE.

AND WHEN YOU TYPICALLY HAVE A LOT OF MINORITIES OR JEWS, YOU'RE GOING TO HAVE LAT OF ACTS OF HATE AND WHAT IT MEANS ALSO IS WE HAVE TO BE KEENLY AWARE.

PEOPLE THINK NEW YORK IS THIS MELTING POT AND WE DON'T HAVE THESE ISSUES AND EVERYONE HUGS AND LOVES EACH OTHER.

BUT THIS MAP SHOWS THERE ARE AREAS THAT ARE DIVERSE AND THERE'S LOT OF HATE ACTIVITY TAKING PLACE.

I THINK IT'S EYE OPENING AND VERY HELPFUL.

IT'S ALWAYS PLEZ TONIGHT TALK WITH YOU, ALTHOUGH WE'RE TALKING ABOUT THESE INCREASES.

PERHAPS YOU AND I CAN BE BRINGING BETTER NEWS.

ALWAYS GOOD TO SEE YOU.

THANK YOU.

AND A REMINDER IF YOU WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE INTERACTIVE MAP, YOU CAN VISIT US AT METROFOCUS.ORG.

THE GREAT AMERICAN READ HAS BROUGHT ME HERE TO HARLEM, THE BIRTH PLACE OF PROLIFIC WRITER AND HERO, JAMES BALDWIN.

HIS 1952 NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER LIST, A BETTER COUNTRY LED HIM TO 100 MOST LOVED NOVELS.

TIME AND EDUCATION HAVE CHANGED MUCH OF HARLEM FROM THE 1930s AND '40s.

THIS BUILDING BEHIEBD ME WAS A PLACE WHERE COMMON THINKERS ALSO CONG REIGATED.

IT STILL REMAIN AS RESOURCE FOR THE BLACK EXPERIENCE IN AMERICA.

AND HOME TO THE LARGEST COLLECTION OF ORIGINAL WORKS FOR BALDWIN WHICH MAKES IT THE BEST PLACE TO EXPLORE HIS ROLE IN THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT AS WELL AS THE GAY RIGHTS MOVEMENT.

LET'S GO INSIDE.

THIS IS THE POPULAR EXHIBITION ABOUT THE BLACK POWER MOVEMENT.

BUTTONS, FLYERS AND EVEN WANTED POSTERS FROM THE LATE 1960s.

ON THE WALL IS ALSO A PICTURE OF AUTHOR, AND CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST, JAMES BALDWIN.

KEVIN YOUNG TOOK ME ON A TOUR OF THE CENTER AND SHOWED OFF HIS COLLECTIONS OF WORK BY WHAT SOME WOULD CALL A HERO OF HUMANITY.

HERE'S A WANTED POSTER WHICH I THINK IS A REALLY POWERFUL POSTER.

THAT'S ANGELA DAVIS.

AND HERE WE HAVE JAMES BALDWIN WITH BOBBY SEAL IN THE SAN FRANCISCO COUNTY JAIL.

AND BALDWIN'S RELATIONSHIP TO THE MOVEMENT I THINK IS REALLY INTERESTING.

IT'S COMPLICATED, IT'S CRITICAL, SUPPORTIVE.

IT'S ALL THE THING I COULDN'T SEE EXPECT OUT OF BALDWIN BECAUSE BALDWIN IS OF COURSE ENTRANCED FOR MOST OF THIS TIME BUT HE'S WRITING AND THINKING ABOUT THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT AND THAT'S EXTENDED LIFE IN THE BLACK POWER MOVEMENT IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

IT IS AN HONORABLE TRUTH ALL MEN ARE ARE BROTHERS.

THAT'S THE BOTTOM LINE.

YOU CAN'T TAKE IT FROM THERE, YOU CAN'T TAKE IT LAT.

HE WAS GREAT AT TALKING ABOUT BROTHER HOOD AND WE'RE ALL BROTHERS AND SISTERS.

WE'RE ALL COMMUNICATING AND ALSO ENTER RELATED.

HE'S TRYING TO HELP US UNDERSTAND THE WAY SEXUALITY AND RACE ARE TOGETHER AND HAVE LONG BEEN THAT WAY AND I THINK THAT CONECATIVITY AND CONSISTENCY IS VERY IMPORTANT.

AND YOU SEE IT IN HIS ESSAYS.

ONE OF HIS BEST SELLING WORKS OF FICTION IS SET IN THE EARLY 1960s SPANNING HARLEM AND FRANCE.

MANY THEMES THAT WERE TAB OO TO TALK ABOUT, SUCH AS INTERRACIAL DATING.

HE'S TALKED ABOUT THE PAIN AND JOY OF BEING IN LOVE AND REMEMBER THIS IS NEARLY 70 YEAR BUSINESS OR THE SUPREME COURT RULES TO GIVE SAME-SEX COUPLES THE RIGHT TO MARRY.

I KNOW I LOVE PEOPLE AND PEOPLE LOVE ME.

IT WAS A BOOK I READ IN COLLEGE.

I THINK IT WAS VERY MUCH A BOOK THAT SPOKE TO ME AT THE TIME BUT IT THINGS ABOUT IDENTITY IN MANY DIFFERENT WAYS.

IT THINKS ABOUT THE WAYS THE DEATH OF A BLACK MAN IN THIS CASE, IN THE NOVEL, CAN EFFECT OTHER PEOPLE.

IT CERTAINLY IS THINKING ABOUT THE WAY BLACK LIVES MATTER AND IN THAT WAY IT'S A REALLY IN INTERESTING TIE TO OUR TIME.

WE MAKE AN ACTIVE FAITH RISKING MY WOMAN, MY CHILDREN IN SOME IDEALISM I HAVE NEVER SEEN.

MANY OF HIS FIERY INSIGHT SAID ARE BASED ON HIS TIME IN NEW YORK.

IT WAS HIS WINDOW TO THE OUTSIDE WORLD AND HE WANTED TO BE A PART OF THE AND WRITE ABOUT IT.

AND NOW THE VERY SAME PLACE JAMES BALDWIN'S SEEDS OF GREATNESS WERE PLANTED.

THESE ARE SOME OF MY FAVORITES TOO.

THESE ARE NOTES FOR A NOVEL HE WAS WORKING.

HERE IS MAKING NOTES ABOUT THE NOVEL ITSELF.

THESE TWO HE CLEARLY WAS AT A BAR OR A CLUB THAT HAD A TWO-DRIRNG MINIMUM PER PERSON PER SET AND THIS ONE HAS A HOTEL STATIONARY AND IT GIFBS YOU A SENSE OF HIS TRAVELS, OF WHAT HE WAS UP TO BUT HE WAS WRITING ALL THE TIME.

SOME ARGUE THAT PROLIFIC WRITER THAT DIED IN THE 1980s, THAT HIS POPULARITY HAS GROWN.

I THINK BALDWIN WAS ALWAYS CENTRAL TO OUR UNDERSTANDING OF OURSELVES SOME OF THE IS PEOPLE HAVE REDISCOVERED HIS WRITINGS AND SEEN HOW PROFETIC, THEY ARE.

AND YOU GET TO SEE BALDWIN'S WRITING UP CLOSE FROM HIS FIRST NOVEL ALL THE WAY TO HIS LAST WORKS, ONE OF HIS LAST PIECES WAS A PLAY CALLED 'THE WELCOME TABLE' THAT NEVER GOT PRODUCED.

AND TO HAVE THAT SCRIPT AND LOOK IT OVER IS REALLY POWERFUL.

AND YOU GET TO SEE IN A BOOK LIKE 'ANOTHER COUNTRY' THE WAY HE WORKED.

HIS FIRST THOUGHT WAS OFTEN HIS BEST THOUGHT BUT IT'S BECAUSE HE'S THINKING AND THINKING AND THINKING.

THEY'RE THE CLEANEST MANUSCRIPTS I'VE SEEN BECAUSE HE'S SO GOOD AT CONJURING THE BIBLICAL LANGUAGE.

THE THOUGHTS OF THE CHURCH, THE THOUGHTS OF DARE I SAY A PROFIT, SOMEONE THINKING ABOUT THE FUTURE BUT WHERE WE ARE NOW.

EDIE FALC OO WITH OUTSTANDING PERFORMANCES PORTRAYING DYNAMIC AND STRONG WOMAN CHARACTERS SUCH AS CARMEN SOPRANO AND NURSE JACKY.

SHE PORTRAYS ANOTHER FASCINATING WOMAN, PALLY NEWMAN WHO WAS A CLOSE POLITICAL CONFIDENT OF ALBANY MAYOR, ONE OF THE LONGEST SERVING MAYORS IN AMERICAN HISTORY.

AND THE BOUNDS OF LOVE, LOYALTY AND FEMALE POWER.

IN THE MALE DOMINATED WORLD OF PATRONAGE POLITICS.

THAT'S NOT THE WAY IT SHOULD WORK, BILL.

RESPONSIBLE FOR EVERY SINGLE ONE, REPUBLICAN, WHATEVER, COMMUNIST.

MAYBE NOT COMMUNIST.

BILL, AS A COMEDIAN, YOU ARE THE BACKBONE OF THE PARTY, OKAY.

THE ASSISTANCE YOUR AUNT GOT THAT YOUR MOTHER SHOULD HAVE GOT.

NOW THE PEOPLE IN THE COMMITTEE WHO KNOWS THEIR NAME, HE KNOWS THEIR CHILDREN'S NAMES.

RESPONSIBLE FOR BRINGING IN THE VOTERS AND HE MAKES SURE THOSE VOTERS ARE DEMOCRAT.

EDIE FALCO JOINS US NOW.

THERE'S A CAMPAIGN THAT YOU'RE PARTICIPATING IN.

BUT WHY YOU LOVE NEW YORK IN 25 WORDS.

I ONLY HAD FIVE.

GETTING TO SEE THE TRUTH.

IT WAS WONDERFUL.

YOU'RE SO NICE.

WE WERE KNOCKED OVER.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

AND WHO WOULD HAVE GUESSED IT, A PLAY ABOUT 1977 ALBANY POLITICS.

BUT IT'S WONDERFUL.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

SO THE PLAY IS BASED ON A REAL HISTORICAL CHARACTER.

YEAH.

AND IN FACT ALL THE MAJOR CHARACTERS HAVE BEEN WRITTEN ABOUT A LOT AND NOT ONLY THAT THE GRANDDAUGHTER OF THE CHARACTER YOU PLAY IS OUR VERY OWN JUNIOR SENATOR, KIRSTEN JILL BRAND.

I HAVE TO TELL YOU WHEN I READ THE SCRIPT WRITTEN BY SHARA WRIGHT, FIRST OF ALL I WAS FAN OF 'THE OTHER PLACE' THAT LAURIE MET CALF WAS IN AND SHE'S ONE OF MY ALL-TIME FAVORITE ACTRESSES.

I TRREAD IT AND RESPONDED TO TH SCRIPT AND THE CHARACTERS AND RELATIONSHIPS, ALL THE STUFF I ALWAYS RESPOND TO WHEN I'M DECIDING WHETHER IT'S SOMETHING I WANT TO WORK ON AND IT WAS ONLY SOME TIME AFTER THAT I WAS TOLD THIS IS A TRUE STORY OR BASED AT LEAST ON TRUE PEOPLE.

HOW DO YOU USUALLY PREPARE FOR A CHARACTER?

I HAVE NO IDEA.

I GOT TO TELL YOU I HAVE NO IDEA.

THE SAME WAY I PREPARE FOR ANYTHING.

IT WAS SOME TIME AGO WHEN I READ THE SCRIPT AND SAID YES.

IT HADN'T BEEN CAST.

WE DIDN'T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT IT.

ALL I HAD WAS THE DIRECTOR SCOTT ELLIOTT AND I DON'T READ IT AGAIN.

I LEAVE TULOAN UNTIL ALL THE PIECES ARE TOGETHER, UNTIL WE'RE IN REHEARSAL BECAUSE YOB KNOW MY BRAIN WILL START TO WORK ON IT IN SOME WAY BEFORE EVERYTHING'S BEEN PLACED.

SO I LEAVE IT ALONE AND WHEN WE'RE ALL TOGETHER AND WE WANT TO BUILD THE THING TOGETHER IS WHEN I START.

I HAD AN OPPORTUNITY TO SNEAK WONDERFUL LINDA JACKSON.

AND I ASKED HOW SHE PREPARES AND SHE SAID SHE STARTS TO LEARN HOW TO LOOK THROUGH THE CHARACTER'S EYES.

I WONDER HOW THE WORLD LOOKS THROUGH HOLLY NEWMAN'S EYES

I WOULD SAY SHE HAS AN IDEA OF THE WAY SHE WANTS THINGS TO BE AND THINKS IT MUST BE THE BEST WAY TO PEOPLE.

THERE IS GENERAL ALTRUISM THERE.

SHE MENTIONS A NUMBER OF TIMES THAT DEMOCRATS ARE PEOPLE WHO CARE ABOUT PEOPLE AND I THINK THAT AT LEAST WAS THE ORIGIN OF HER INTEREST IN POLITICS.

I IMAGINE MAYBE EVERYBODY'S ORIGINAL INTEREST.

THE CONSISTENT UNDERCURRENT IS YOUR RELATIONSHIP OR PALLY'S RELATIONSHIP WITH THE MAYOR.

THEY'RE, AS IN REAL LIFE, THE PLAY TALKS ABOUT HOW THERE ARE RUMORS THAT THEY WERE LOVERS BECAUSE SHE WORKED FOR HIM FOR 40 YEARS.

THE PLAY SEEMS TO PUNCTUATE THAT.

WHAT KIND?

I THINK IT'S THE KIND THAT EXISTS ALL OVER THE PLACE THAT IS CATEGORILESS.

YOU KNOW SHE LOVED THESE TWO MEN BUT I THINK HER HUSBAND, PETER ALSO LOVED THE MAYOR IN HIS OWN WAY.

THEY HAD A THREESOME PACT, FRIENDSHIP AND WHATEVER ELSE THAT MIGHT BE.

THROUGH THIS SUBTHEME THAT YOU SEE THE VULNERABILITY OF HER WHICH ACTUALLY ACCENTUATES THE STRENGTH.

LIKE THE SALT IN THE CHOCOLATE.

WE'RE TALKING ABOUT THE STRENGTH THING CARE AND THE STRENGTH IN CHARACTERS YOU HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO PLAY.

ARE THEY JUST AS SCARCE IN YOUR EXPERIENCE AS THEY HAVE BEEN?

STRONG WOMEN CHARACTERS?

I GOT TO SAY I DON'T KNOW.

AND I'VE HEARD THAT THROUGHOUT ALL MY YEARS OF WORK THAT IT'S HARD TO FIND GOOD ROLES FOR WOMEN.

I HAVE BEEN EXCEEDINGLY LUCKY THAT I HAVE BEEN ABLE TO HAPPEN ABON AND I'M DRAWN TO THE KINDS OF ROLES THAT ARE COMPLICATED AND RICH AND -- IT SEEMS LIKE THEY'VE BEEN THERE WHEN I LOOKED FOR THEM.

AND I THINK THEY MIGHT BE MORE PLENTIFUL NOW, JUST BASED ON WHAT'S ON TELEVISION AND AROUND.

THAT STORIES ARE BEING WRITTEN ABOUT COMPLICATED PEOPLE THAT ARE LIKABLE AND AWFUL AT THE SAME TIME.

LIKE MANY PEOPLE I LOVE.

I WOULD BE REMISS IF I DIDN'T MENTION YOUR CAST MATES WHO ARE WONDERFUL AS WELL.

I LOVE THAT GUY.

I SEEN HIM ON THE SUBWAY ALL THE TIME.

THEY'RE GREAT.

COULDN'T HAVE DONE BETTER I THINK.

CONGRATULATIONS.

IT'S A WONDERFUL PLAY.

I MEAN IT WITH ALL MY HEART.

IT WAS A PLEASURE.

THANK YOU.

PLAYING THROUGH OCTOBER 28TH.

AS WE KNOW PART OF THE CITY PFSZ TREASURES ARE ITS DIVERSE COMMUNITIES.

FLAVORS AND TRADITIONS OVER FLOW BUT HAVE YOU HEARD ABOUT THE CITY'S LATEST EDITION, LITTLE HAITI.

IT WAS DESIGNATES THAT BECAUSE THE LARGEST POPULATION OF HAITIANS RESIDE THERE.

TRRS THE CITY COUNSEL DECIDED TO CO NAME A STREET IN LITTLE HAITI AFTER ONE OF THE NATION'S FOUNDING FATHERS, FORMER SLAVE WHO HELPED OVER THROW FRENCH COLONISTS.

SO YOU MIGHT SAY WHAT'S THE CONFLICT?

HERE TO DISCUSS IN LITTLE DETAIL THE ASSEMBLY MEMBER.

LET'S TALK ABOUT THE DESIGNATION OF LITTLE HAITI.

WHAT ARE YOUR DESIGNATION -- ACTUALLY A DESIGNATION CALLING IT LITTLE HAITI.

WHY IS THAT IMPORTANT?

THAT'S IMPORTANT BECAUSE OF WHO WE ARE IN NEW YORK CITY.

WE ARE A VERY DIVERSE CITY WHERE ALL IMMIGRANTS COME AND RESIDE AND WE HAVE AREAS AND POCKETS OF NEIGHBORHOODS WHERE YOU HAVE LARGE POP YLZ OF A CERTAIN GROUP.

IN MY AREA, WHICH IS FLAT BUSH, WE HAD A NUMBER OF HAITIANS WHO HAD MIGRATED IN THE LATE '60s AND MADE THAT AREA THEIR HOME AND OVER TIME THEY'VE BECOME THE LARGEST IMMIGRANT POPULATION, OVER 42% AND WE THOUGHT IT WAS TIME TO DESIGNATE THIS AREA AS LITTLE HAITI, TO RECLAIM OUR TERRITORY, ESPECIALLY GIVEREN ALL THE NATIONAL, DEROGATORY NAMES AGAINST HAITIANS AND WE FELT THAT IMMIGRANTS FELT THAT THIS WAS TIME TO RECLAIM OUR NEIGHBORHOOD AND BRING ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES, LET PEOPLE SEE WHO WE ARE.

YOU LOOK BACK IN THE PAST AND SOMETIMES THE DESIGNATION OF THESE AREAS WERE NOT INTENDED TO BE COMPLIMENTARY.

YOU'VE SEEN WHERE AFRICAN AMERICANS WERE SECLUDED AND --

AND THERE ARE ARE A HORRENDOUS TRAGEDY.

THEY BURNED DOWN, THAT PEOPLE DON'T KNOW.

AND AS A RESULT HAITIANS COME INTO THE COUNTRY WITH ENGLISH BEING THEIR SECOND LANGUAGE.

SPEAKING A FOREIGN LANGUAGE.

NOBODY KNOWS WHAT HAITIAN CREOLE IS.

AND AS A RESULT OF LANGUAGE BARRIER, LOOKING DIFFERENT, BEING OF AFRICAN DESCENT, THEY WERE EXCLUDED FROM MOST GROUPS.

AND WE AS HAITIANS HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO BUILD OUR NEIGHBORHOODS.

AND OVER TIME WHEN HAITIANS STARTED GETTING ACCEPTED, IT BECAME PART OF THE -- OUR LITTLE HAITI.

IT WAS INFORMALLY REFERRED TO AS LITTLE HAITI WHERE YOU'RE WALKING DOWN THE STREET AND ALL YOU HEAR IS CREOLE.

YOU'RE WALKING DOWN THE STREET AND ALL YOU SEE IS HAITIAN CHURCHES AND HAITIAN RESTAURANTS.

WE FELT WHY DON'T WE MAKE THIS OFFICIAL.

LET'S TALK ABOUT THE CONTROVERSY.

WE TALKED ABOUT CO NAME THOICHK STREETS.

ONE OOF THE FOUNDERS.

HISTORY WILL TELL YOU IT WAS ESSENTIALLY HIS IDEA TO PURGE WHITE FRENCH PEOPLE FROM THERE.

THEY WERE FIGHTING GENSZ THE AMERICANS AND SAYING HEY WE'RE GOING TO TAKE BACK THOSE TERRITORIES AND ENSLAVE YOU.

WHAT WOULD WE DO?

WHAT WOULD YOU DO AS AMERICANS?

AND THEY MUST UNDERSTAND HE WAS BORN AS A SLAVE, WHO WAS THE FIRST RULER THAT LED US INTO THIS ENORMOUS VICTORY, MAKING HAITI THE FIRST BLACK REPUBLIC AND THE SECOND NATION AFTER AMERICA TO GAIN INDEPENDENCE IN THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE.

WE SHOULD RECOGNIZE THAT WE ARE CELEBRATING FREEDOM FIGHTER, NOT JUST FOR HAITI BUT OF THE WORLD, OF AMERICAS THAT PUT AMERICA IN THE POSITION TO PURCHASE LOUISIANA TERRITORY AND GAIN INDEPENDENCE FROM THE SPANISH.

SO WE NEED LOOK AT IT IN THE TIME FRAME THAT IT WAS

I THINK IT'S AN INTERESTING DISCUSSION.

OTHER AREAS WHERE THE NAMING BECOMES AN ISSUE AND WE CERTAINLY APPRECIATE YOU CAN COMING ON AND TALKING TO US.

THANKS FOR SPENDING TIME WITH US.

APPRECIATE IT.

THANK YOU.

> 'METROFOCUS' IS MADE POSSIBLE BY JAMES AND MERYL TISH, BERNARD AND IRENE SCHWARTZ, ROSALYNN P. WALTER, BARBARA HOPE ZUCKERBERG AND BY CORPORATE FUNDING WAS PROVIDED BY MUTUAL OF AMERICA, YOUR RETIREMENT COMPANY.

AND BY PSE AND G SERVING CUSTOMERS, STRENGTHENING THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY AND INVESTING IN THE FUTURE.

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Rosalind P. Walter, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Janet Prindle Seidler, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

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