Here’s the thing about gentrification.
The upside is that there is more police presence, better public schools, your trash will get picked up, but there’s a downside. I’m not going to make a generalization. But, in many cases, when people move in they have this Christopher Columbus syndrome. There’s a great tradition [and] heritage in Harlem, Fort Greene and Bed-Stuy. You just can’t come in and blow up the spot like you been there forever.
My father is a great jazz musician, Bill Lee. Did the scores for She’s Gotta Have It, School Daze, Do the Right Thing, and Mo Better Blues. He’s been playing music in our home [in Fort Greene] since 1969. Now, some neighbor moved in, they’re calling the cops on my father saying he’s playing his music too loud. That’s some bullshit.
No one has ever complained, since 1969, about my father playing his jazz music. Now, this new person moves in, they calling the cops? The cops laugh at them! It’s that type of attitude man. That’s not making good neighbors. That’s not coming in the neighborhood being humble.
Mount Morris Park in Harlem. For years, brothers have played African drums on Sunday morning. Now…they’re gone. That’s disrespectful.
You go to Fort Greene today, it’s unrecognizable. Bed-Stuy do or die. Harlem. Lower East Side. DC’s not Chocolate City anymore.
Everybody in the Lower East Side, they moved to Williamsburg. Particularly, my Puerto Rican brother and sisters, they can’t afford Williamsburg anymore because of hipsters. They moved to Bushwick; pretty soon Bushwick is going to be like Williamsburg. After Coney Island there is nowhere else. After the beach at Coney Island, it’s the motherfucking Atlantic Ocean!"
Spike Lee (via dreamsactualized)
Literally this. Do not come to Brooklyn like you own it and that natives to Brooklyn do not belong here. I’m a 3rd generation Brooklyn native. My family escaped the jim crow south on both sides to Brooklyn. Now they are being pushed out and around because a bunch of white 30 year olds think that their right to live in a neighborhood is more important than my family’s right to stay in their communities. They think their coffee shops and artisan donut spots are more important than the bodegas that sustained the communities for decades. Then you fucking come here and try to rename shit. It really is Christopher Columbus syndrome. Next person who tries to call Bed Stuy Bedford and Stuyvesant Town near me is getting a back hand. I have no problem with neighborhoods getting “better” and becoming more diverse, but do not, DO NOT, treat the people around you like they are the one’s who don’t fucking belong.
Very relevant to me moving to Brooklyn (as a gentrifying agent…). Researching responsible moving