Thursday, October 06, 2005


This is Black Harlem, the blog that discusses everything about Harlem and the changes going on - Displacement of long time Harlemites, new construction, new predatory banks popping up, new "pioneers" moving to Harlem, police harrassment of Harlemites, especially young black men, new businesses, real estate vultures, diminished services and takeovers of buildings. Also Black culture in danger of being destroyed by the new trailblazers. Black Harlem will be your place to post your observations,documentations and views of what is happening in Black Harlem. Speak your mind and be honest. This is the forum for it.


Blogger joey said...

do something

6:31 AM  
Blogger HARLEM OBSERVER said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8:42 PM  
Blogger Wesley said...

Interwoven thoroughly in your thesis are the blunders of ethnic cohesiveness exemplified by people of african descent. Whereas, a rigorous understanding of history is requisite, we must connect the dots to economics, thusly real power. The takeover of "Harlem" occurs because it's native residents do not exhibit the power to control resources. Therefore, others will. Case closed.
When some of your intellectually challenged posters scorn you and the notion of a functional community of color, one pearl can be gathered after being trampled under hoof.
"Do something!", "What are you going to do about it?", etc.
True. However and in whatever way we must think, work and act in our own selfish self interest, like everyone else.

10:34 PM  
Blogger HARLEM OBSERVER said...

Eloquent analysis. Control resources. Redistribute wealth back in to the community as apposed to the very few black businesses in Harlem that recycle the wealth is in other neighborhoods. Lets say we continue to act in our own selfish self interest-is it possible to do this and give back to the community to prevent it from being assimilated into the bland and dilluted areas of down the island?

10:18 AM  
Blogger Wesley said...

The answer to your query is, of course, yes. Native inhabitants must control resources in the broadest sense of the term; monetary, physical, material, mental, etc. A good example would be a money circulation analysis. Money circulates in ethnic communities who are adapt in commerce(asian, jewish, etc) for 30 days before it leaves the community. The money in the black community circulates for 8 hours and is gone.
The more pressing issue is the use of the term "we" as in acting in our own self interest. People of african descent do not think and act as "we". Much to our own peril. A certain type of consciousness is necessary to think in terms of "we". A historical consciousness. People of african descent have historical amnesia. Making them vulnerable to the machinations of others.
A massive re-education is a pre-requisite for community control. Many great people made super human efforts to educate the people.
That remains the holy grail.

8:07 PM  
Anonymous David X said...

Sometimes it is necessary to have a touch of force to conceive power.
If our African brothers and sisters hold back that all mighty dollar from white establishments, that will definitely put a major dent in their business and at best put a whole in their pocket.
Since African people are the biggest consumers at most, materialistic things, white folks know that we love to spend that money.
Africans are the only group of people that don't spend amongst each other. We don't even let the money stay in the community.
The Koreans, Israelians,Italians, Russians, Arabs all come to our communities to take our money.
But you don't see Africans opening up businesses in their communities.They wouldn't have that.
So, I say buy black and hold on to your money and support black businesses.
Easier said than done.
Willie Lynch is alive and well in our communities. We have the power to reverse the process.

10:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


9:09 AM  
Anonymous dee jay said...

we ain't gonna control nothing until we weed out those within our community who are hell bent on keeping everyone else down because they have accepted the notion that they/we ain't shit, ain't gone be shit, and - especially troubling - that we don't deserve shit.

Let's face it, there are too many of us - and I only have to look at my own family to see it - who have such an entrenched sense of entitlement based on nothing. Everyone ELSE owes me something.

Not aspiring to anything - and preventing others to do so - keeps the pressure and spotlight from them to answer to their choices.

5:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with DEE Jay. I am so tired of Black people still using the excuse that The White Man is holding me back. You only have to look at our street corners everyday and see why we have lost Harlem. We hate to hang out our own dirty laundry. Many of us don't want to do anything other than sale drugs, kill each other and just find nothing to do. There needs to be a law where these people's organs can be transplanted into people who I see go to work in pain, wheelchairs etc and want to live. Our people are very discouraging and getting worse everyday. Instead of doing hard honest work to get things, most of us resort to crime and as soon as one of us are killed by the police, we yell police brutality. Well, get off the corners and find a JOB and stop making it so bad for us decent Blacks. Stop being followers and be leaders of something positive with your life.

It is SAD. Everytime I hear a Black talk about the "TAKE OVER" of whites, I just walk away in discuss.

7:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In total agreement with DEE Jay!!!
And to add my own two cents, the line between rich and poor should not be confused with a line between white and black. I was walking my dog down the street when confronted by an angry pitbull and its black owner, dressed in classic 70s blaxploitation style. He started complaining about "you white people moving up here with your little ass dogs, raising our rents, Harlem is for us black people!" My reply: Your rent is not yours, its your landlords, who is most likely not white, as many landlords are not. In fact
Harlem was populated by rich Jews way before blacks were able to afford it. And, had I been here in those years, I would never think of alienating a black person by saying, "Harlem is for us Jews!" Why did he have to say anything without the slightest provocation from me? Because he is angry, and I am white. Obviously there is a legacy of disadvantage that blacks are burdened with. But in this day and age, laying a blanket of blame on all white people is no less racist than forcing all blacks into slavery. While he obviously assumed I was one of those many rich white people that a few angry blacks, such as yourselves, keep blaming for wiping out your culture, I did not need to dignify his response with enlightening him that:
a) Jews have been kicked out of every country they ever inhabited
b) Jews faced millenia of genocide easily comparable to the tortures of slavery.
c) Jews and blacks share the status of being the target of the same mass of racists

Anger blinds this poor man so much that he blurs the lines. Meanwhile on the same corner we were standing, I could point to a brownstone owned by a successful black man, a coffee shop owned by a proud black woman, an apartment rented and shared by black men and white men. There are many black businesses in Harlem, and Black entrepenuers who would be ashamed to have him speaking on their behalf. These are people that have worked to get where they are, they have not sat around blaming old ghosts for their frustration.
Again, yes, there is a legacy of racism that burdens the black community, but the truth is that
the "Old Harlemites" that are getting pushed out are in two parts:
1) Those who persevered the wave of blatant racism that plagued earlier decades and managed to work hard to secure rent-stabilied/controlled homes. My heart goes out to those who cannot afford to stay in Harlem despite their efforts. I don't blame them for being angry, but reversing the tides of racism is not the constructive solution.
2) The second group is made up of those who sit on their ass all day doing no work thinking that the man owes them. I hear the word "Nigger" coming from these blacks more than I hear it coming from anybody else.
I had one such example live below me. He was a 28-year old black man who was totally capable of being gainfully employed, but his mom had a city-paid apartment so why did he have to work? Instead he smoked pot all day with his friends, EVERYDAY!! I worked at home and had to suffer the secondhand potsmoke coming through the floorboards, as did my pregnant wife. When I asked him politely to lower the music that literally was shaking the glasses on our shelves, he replied with an antisemitic remark about me. Why? What was the cause? Oh. I see: a white man, a Jew no less, in Harlem, must be one of those new rich yuppies.
Again, blind reverse racism. My issue with him had nothing to with him being black. It had to do with respect for fellow tenants. I am a special education teacher in the Bronx, thats the meager income that my single income family lives off of, if thats a yuppie then what does that make him on the scale of relativity?
Yes, there still exists racism, and it is underhanded and manipulative. But it is not a quality of every white person. It is time to treat racism with an upperhand, not by reversing the anger and laying generalizations on people. I would never think that every black person is a lazy, disrespectful, angry ass like the naive young man I lived above, or the man with the pitbull. I wish you would see that not every white person is a shamelessly rich "pioneer" attempting to wipe out other cultures, and that some of these new Harlemites are indeed darker than you yourself.
Two weeks after the pitbull incident, I past another black man who made an unprovoked comment to me as well, he said "Don't you just love little dogs?" We talked about it for an hour. Race never figured into it.

5:51 PM  
Blogger Sophie Pilgrim said...

Hi Black Harlem,

I'm a journalist at France 24 in paris. We're trying to get black Harlem residents' reactions to Howard Stern's voxpop ( Would you or someone you know like to defend black Harlemites and explain why there's a media block/ lack of info in the area?

Please email me on

Best regards,

Sophie Pilgrim

6:03 AM  

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