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Federal complaint expected (Civil rights suit against Black school officials for rascism)
Philadelphia Inquirer ^ | 12/12/09 | Kristen Graham and Jeff Gammage

Posted on 12/13/2009 11:48:32 AM PST by DBCJR

The Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund said yesterday that it would file a federal civil rights complaint accusing the Philadelphia School District of failing to address violence against Asian immigrant students at South Philadelphia High School. The complaint will claim that the district violated the students' right to equal protection under the 14th Amendment, said Cecilia Chen, a staff attorney with the organization.

Chen said the complaint would be filed with the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division.

The news came on a day when the city schools chief and South Philadelphia High principal spoke out publicly for the first time since the Dec. 3 attacks on about 30 Asian students by large groups of students, most African American. They announced new security measures and diversity programs.

Superintendent Arlene Ackerman also said she would not agree to a demand from the Asian community that she meet with students and parents at a neutral location, and with activists present.

Instead, she said, the students should return to school, and she will meet with only them and their parents.

"I will be here to have private conversations with the students and their families," Ackerman said. "I do not intend to have conversations with community leaders."

She said she would meet with the leaders separately, but not just with leaders of Asian communities.

"We're not going to continue to make this an Asian vs. African American thing," said Ackerman. "This is not just about demands of one racial group. It is about the needs of everyone."

Wei Chen, an 18-year-old senior who is president of the Chinese American Student Association, said students were not willing to meet with Ackerman at the high school because "we think it is not safe for us to go back." The students have not yet decided whether to return to school on Monday.

"We are not seeking a problem," he said, speaking in Mandarin. "We just want the school to improve, and we want a safe school."

Ackerman suggested the attacks were being sensationalized by the media, and urged the community to stop assigning blame and move forward.

During yesterday's press conference, Ackerman was surrounded by some 50 student leaders of all races whom she described as "the real face of South Philadelphia High."

Helen Gym, a board member of Asian American United working with the victims, later took issue with Ackerman's statement.

"Does that mean that the children who've been hurt, beaten, and are afraid to come to school are not real faces? It's no wonder that the students feel invisible and unheard," Gym said.

Also at the news conference, Ackerman and some South Philadelphia students said that the problem was more a cultural one - those who speak English not understanding those who don't.

"This is something that happened to other students over time - last week, the other month, last year. We have to help them change that," Ackerman said.

Ackerman and principal LaGreta Brown said a host of fixes were planned.

Among the steps being taken: installing 63 new cameras by Jan. 4, including 21 to be put in place this weekend; adding a school, Philadelphia and SEPTA police presence; adding an administrator, retired principal Ozzie Wright, who has helped district schools in crisis over the last several years; beginning diversity training for students; and implementing a U.S. Department of Justice program to deal with racial issues.

The school also will add counselors and bilingual translators, and re-launch a home and school association. An outside investigator will look into the incident, which the district said was in retaliation for the beating the day before of a severely disabled African American student by Asian students.

Also investigating are the district and Philadelphia police. The Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission will hear testimony on Dec. 21.

"The safety and security of all our students that attend this school are my first priority," said Brown, who is new to the district.

Brown said she would not tolerate staffers making negative comments to students. Several of the students who are boycotting the school said South Philadelphia staff stood by while they were being attacked and, in some cases, taunted them.

It was unclear yesterday precisely what the students' demands were.

Students said they wanted staff changes at the school, but were not willing to identify anyone. They said some staffers must change their attitudes toward Asian students.

Asian community leaders said they wanted education officials to accept responsibility for the school's poor performance. The school has failed to meet state standards for several years and is considered "persistently dangerous" under federal law.

"The problem at South Philadelphia High School goes to the leadership of the school, and the leadership at the school district," said Gym.

Student Duc Le, 17, said that parents of Asian students were being called at home and told their children were "illegally absent." Others said the word illegal can be upsetting to newly arrived immigrants who may be undocumented.

"The school has called home to pressure our parents to put pressure on us to return to school," he said. "I don't want to return to school."

Parent Anh Tan, speaking in Vietnamese, said her senior-year son is afraid after being orally threatened - and she doesn't want him going back to school right now.

"I worry about the safety of my child," she said. "Nobody from the school or anywhere has called my home to explain the situation."


TOPICS: Chit/Chat
KEYWORDS: asian; black; immigration; philadelphia; racism
Black school officials have said this is NOT racism or hate crimes just because the perpertrators were all black. The Asian parents are responding by saying it is racism and are hate crimes because the victims are ALL Asian. This points out several prejudices and bias these black leaders share:

1) They are ego-centric: It is all about them. 2) They are the only minority with Civil Rights. If it is not against blacks it is not racism. 3) They are blind at the plight of other minorities, no empathy. 4) They would protect blacks in their government roles over all students at the cost of the rights of other minorities. 4)

1 posted on 12/13/2009 11:48:33 AM PST by DBCJR
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To: DBCJR

According to the black ghetto mentality, studying hard and striving for good grades is “too white,” and beating up whites is not a hate crime. In seeking to improve themselves by studying hard, Asians have become “honorary whites,” and its OK to abuse them.


2 posted on 12/13/2009 11:57:24 AM PST by hellbender
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To: DBCJR

If the Asians leave who are the black thugs going to cheat off of?


3 posted on 12/13/2009 12:00:10 PM PST by 1776 Reborn
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To: DBCJR

I remember when this story first broke the msm were saying white and black students were beating on Asians. Whites haven’t been mentioned since. I guess the more attention the story got the less likely they could keep pushing the lie that Whites were involved. Blacks can’t misbehave on their own after all.


4 posted on 12/13/2009 12:00:44 PM PST by ccruse456
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To: hellbender

Thanks for explaining that to me. It was not making sense.


5 posted on 12/13/2009 12:01:11 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: DBCJR

In Buffalo we had a white kid almost beat to death by a gang of Black kids because he was in their neighborhood and he was dating a black girl.

The response of the black mayor, black police chief and the black community..

“Nothing to see here just keep moving!!! “

Hate crimes are one way affairs.. if you are not black or gay or a Muslim or jew.,you just deserve what you get


6 posted on 12/13/2009 12:01:50 PM PST by RnMomof7
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To: DBCJR

Correct


7 posted on 12/13/2009 12:02:00 PM PST by svcw (The time is near at hand which must determine whether Americans are to be free men or slaves. GW)
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To: DBCJR
Normally Asian groups work quietly without much public to-do. A few leaders would go to the school district or the mayor and request some action be taken.

In order for them to take this route, I am concluding that the school district is non-responsive.

8 posted on 12/13/2009 12:03:34 PM PST by votemout
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To: RnMomof7

Yeah, but... unlike whites, Asians “should” be protected under hate crime law.


9 posted on 12/13/2009 12:05:47 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: votemout

No, the school IS responsive... defending the black perpertrators.


10 posted on 12/13/2009 12:08:20 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: DBCJR

11 posted on 12/13/2009 12:19:05 PM PST by Vaquero (BHO....'The Pretenda from Kenya')
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To: DBCJR

12 posted on 12/13/2009 12:20:12 PM PST by Vaquero (BHO....'The Pretenda from Kenya')
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To: DBCJR

In most cities where the asians have much population at all, they will work together and pull a lot of political power. If I was the school district, I’d work something out. Of course there’s a reason I’m not an elected official.


13 posted on 12/13/2009 12:22:48 PM PST by votemout
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To: DBCJR
Wei Chen, an 18-year-old senior who is president of the Chinese American Student Association, said students were not willing to meet with Ackerman at the high school because "we think it is not safe for us to go back." The students have not yet decided whether to return to school on Monday.

Not to worry. Just get Kevin Jennings, OB's safe schools czar on it.
14 posted on 12/13/2009 12:25:56 PM PST by caveat emptor
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To: Vaquero

This situation is exactly what was needed to point out that the current Black dominated Civil Rights movement is not a movement for civil rights at all, but a political “mafia” to extort political favor, not equal rights but political dominion.


15 posted on 12/13/2009 12:26:41 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: caveat emptor

This situation is exactly what was needed to point out that the current Black dominated Civil Rights movement is not a movement for civil rights at all, but a political “mafia” to extort political favor, not equal rights but political dominion.


16 posted on 12/13/2009 12:27:33 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: DBCJR
"We're not going to continue to make this an Asian vs. African American thing," said Ackerman. "This is not just about demands of one racial group. It is about the needs of everyone."

Ha! That is an amazing statement. When has that EVER happened? We shall remember that next time the black whiners start whining which is probably in about 5..4...3...2.

17 posted on 12/13/2009 12:35:47 PM PST by Altura Ct.
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To: RnMomof7

Surprised? I grew up with a girl who became a teacher, doing very well in college. She wanted to teach so badly she took the first job she could land. Unfortunately that was in the inner city. She was assaulted repeatedly and quit six months in. She expressed to me that she received no assistance from the staff and administration within the school district and was even told by several staff members that she just did not belong there because she was white, that she could not teach black students because she could did not come from their culture.

Needless to say, it left an indelible mark on her. She resumed teaching at a different school district but away from the city nonsense.

She filed charges of assault but the school board only recommended the students be moved to a different school.


18 posted on 12/13/2009 12:39:02 PM PST by Molon Labbie
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To: DBCJR
Asians aren't dark enough or sufficiently incarcerated to be consider a minority.

They're just a different flavor of white person, and as such are not entitled to equal protection under law, nor can they be victims of hate crimes.


Frowning takes 68 muscles.
Smiling takes 6.
Pulling this trigger takes 2.
I'm lazy.

19 posted on 12/13/2009 12:42:49 PM PST by The Comedian (Evil can only succeed if good men don't point at it and laugh.)
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To: DBCJR
Yeah, but... unlike whites, Asians “should” be protected under hate crime law.

I think all crimes are hate crimes..

20 posted on 12/13/2009 12:42:56 PM PST by RnMomof7
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To: Altura Ct.

Well, I guess you COULD say that. Blacks are the recipients of Black violence more than ANY other group.


21 posted on 12/13/2009 12:43:37 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: The Comedian

Thanks for the clarification!


22 posted on 12/13/2009 12:44:46 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: RnMomof7

You are most certainly right!


23 posted on 12/13/2009 12:45:28 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: DBCJR
There are credible reports some of the adults at the school made fun of the Asians as well

Chinese and Vietnamese students, some of whom have been here for only a few months and barely speak English, courageously described, in excruciating detail, how they've been relentlessly teased and taunted by adult support staffers. "Hey, Chinese." "Hey, Dragon Ball." "Yo, Bruce Lee. Where are you from? Speak English

http://www.philly.com/philly/education/20091211_Annette_John-Hall__Weak_response_to_school_beatings.html
24 posted on 12/13/2009 2:32:36 PM PST by Kid Shelleen (Keep your socialized health care off my body !!)
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To: Kid Shelleen

This situation is exactly what was needed to point out that the current Black dominated Civil Rights movement is not a movement for civil rights at all, but a political “mafia” to extort political favor, not equal rights but political dominion.


25 posted on 12/13/2009 2:35:31 PM PST by DBCJR (What would you expect?)
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To: The Comedian

Asians have that habit of assimilating into the white upper and middle classes within a generation.


26 posted on 12/15/2009 10:18:26 AM PST by John Will
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