Thursday, July 9, 2009

Post Racial America = 1945

Yesterday as I was swaying to the smooth grooves of Maxwell (FREE CONCERTS YES!) I read about an injustice so ridiculous I thought it might be a joke. No its a very real story read below:

View more news videos at:

Dymire Baylor says he overheard a woman ask, "What are all these black kids doing?" when he and his friends showed up.

More than 60 campers from Northeast Philadelphia were turned away from a private swim club and left to wonder if their race was the reason.

Pool Boots Kids Who Might "Change the Complexion"

Kids at Creative Steps Day Camp were thrilled to go swimming once a week at the Valley Swim Club. But after only one trip to the private club, they were...

"I heard this lady, she was like, 'Uh, what are all these black kids doing here?' She's like, 'I'm scared they might do something to my child,'" said camper Dymire Baylor.

The Creative Steps Day Camp paid more than $1900 to The Valley Swim Club. The Valley Swim Club is a private club that advertises open membership. But the campers' first visit to the pool suggested otherwise.

"When the minority children got in the pool all of the Caucasian children immediately exited the pool," Horace Gibson, parent of a day camp child, wrote in an email. "The pool attendants came and told the black children that they did not allow minorities in the club and needed the children to leave immediately."

The next day the club told the camp director that the camp's membership was being suspended and their money would be refunded.

"I said, 'The parents don't want the refund. They want a place for their children to swim,'" camp director Aetha Wright said.

Campers remain unsure why they're no longer welcome.

"They just kicked us out. And we were about to go. Had our swim things and everything," said camper Simer Burwell.

The explanation they got was either dishearteningly honest or poorly worded.

"There was concern that a lot of kids would change the complexion … and the atmosphere of the club," John Duesler, President of The Valley Swim Club said in a statement.

While the parents await an apology, the camp is scrambling to find a new place for the kids to beat the summer heat.

Wait so while I was swaying with Maxwell about doing a lil something something I entered some sort of time warp and was sent back to 1945.... This is the most absurdly racist thing I have ever heard. Let's dissect this shall we:

So 60 Black kids go to the pool to swim, and the Caucasian member of the club fear that they might hurt their kids, and change the complexion of the pool. ~ REALLY? This is the best statement they could release? What the F$%k does that even mean?

I'm no swimmer but I do know that my blackness doesn't rub off or run into the water and then attaches itself the the nearest person. This is ABSURD and RACIST to say the least and clearly the Valley Swimclub really could care less how this looks since they allowed that to be released as a statement. Did the kids not pay the $1900 it took to swim there, so was the green of the money they used not as green as the white members? Hey Valley Swimclub why not just hang a huge confederate flag and "Whites Only" sign because at least then prospective camps would know where they stand...

And what then do you tell your children, who at that age know very little about race issues? I know what I would tell CJ, and those of you that know me personally know exactly what I would say to him. My mind does not allow me to pussyfoot around race issues not even with my three year old. RACE is STILL AN ISSUE PEOPLE! And the longer we dance around it the more power we give it. The election of President Obama, the first Black President does not and will not wipe away the four hundred plus years of oppression and racism. And its time WE as a people embrace that and teach our kids about it..because only through their knowledge of their history will they learn how to handle these events.

Yes wipe your babies tears, but then look them in the eyes and explain the real racial dynamics of this country. So that when faced by the KKK whether in sheets or swim trunks they know. I am beside myself about this incident and how it is being handled, if the Valley Swimclub has not fired this moron manager/director than they are waving the flag pretty high and the people of the city of brotherly love need to raise their fist in protest.


Smarty Jones said...

*applause* Thank you for saying this. I was so gonna come out of hiatus for this nonsense, now, I don't have to.
As long as we draw breathe and we can see our differences on our faces, there will be racism in this country. As long as people refuse to get to know other people based on their skin color and ethnic background, there will be racism in this country.
Racism is older than we are and the bitch won't die. From Texas to Maine, folks of color will always be descriminated against, there's not a damn thing we can do about it.
All we can do, as you've pointed out, is remember what it is, what it looks like and teach our kids to recognize it. We are the first generation of Americans to grow up without segregation. I never knew what it was like to sit in a classroom full of people who looked like me until I got to my beloved A&T. I had the fortune of being raised by parents who spent the large majority of their school years in segregated classrooms (my father NEVER sat in a classroom with a white student).We were taught how to ID racism and descrimination when we see it.
These kids today are being raised by parents who grew up going to school with kids of other races and befriending them and often times, they get to a point where they think they are removed from racism and descrimination.
While kids today know of racism and descrimination, they don't know how to ID when they've been descriminated against and in turn can not process it when they have been.
As far as I'm concerned, forcing these paying customers, who happen to be black children, out of this pool is equivalent to telling a 4-year-old that Santa killed the Tooth Fairy! You've destroyed their innocence and everything good and pure about a kid going to the pool on a hot summer day.
I hope the parents and that program sue the mofos who own that Valley Club for so much they can build a pool on their own damn property!
I'm sure this is not the first time this has happened but if there is a God in heaven and a judge with a conscious, this will be the last.

Kitty said...

I posted this story on my FB page yesterday. This is an outrage. I hope they boycott that place or report them or something. And to do this to CHILDREN makes it that much worse..

CurvyGurl ♥ said...

Excellent commentary. Funny how they didn't a problem accepting the money upfront. I can almost bet that we'll see more of these episodes.