Brooklyn Deep Third Rail

Third Rail Eps 46: Weeksville: The Past as Destiny

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Gentrification has many of us thinking, just how long does one of America’s largest Black Community have before it is disappeared? We discuss Weeksville, Brooklyn's first free Black Community with guests, Vivian Warfield whose family has a long Brooklyn lineage- and historian, Aimee VonBokel.

Segment One: Mark and Veralyn talk to Vivian about her commitment and descendancy to Weeksville, while Aimee provides historical context and geographical orientaion.  

Segment Two: The Brooklyn Deep team wonders: Did Weeksville leave us any clues on how to contend with the displacement of the very Black community it helped bring into existence?

Segment Three: "Tell 'Em Why You Mad"

LINKS: 

Aimee VonBokel provides us with a walk thru another family's economic timeline in Weeksville via the Carter-Mayo Properties

Music heard in this episode was found via The Lost Jazz Shrines of Weeksville project and include clips from: 

  • Horace Silver Quintet: "Cookin at The Continental"
  • Jim Europe's 369th Infantry "Hellfighters" Band "On Patrol In No Man's Land"
  • EUBIE BLAKE & THE NICHOLAS BROTHERS. Pie, Pie Blackbird. 1932 All-Black Musical Film.

Intro and Outro theme Music:

“City Survival” by MC K-Swift featuring TreZure Empire.

Third Rail Eps 45: Nothin’ But a G Thing

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On the eve of the NYC elections, the Brooklyn Deep team examines all the local gentrification drama that helped define the political landscape this summer. Joining us is Michael Higgins, the lead organizer for Families United for Racial and Economic Equality (FUREE). Also, Brooklyn Deep’s engineer and co-producer, TK, hooks on a mic and joins the action.

Segment One: Michael Higgins reviews this summer in Central Brooklyn gentrification and  discusses what prompted the recent Brooklyn Anti-Gentrification Network’s (BAN) “March Against Police Violence, Racism and Gentrification.”

Segment Two: The Brooklyn Deep team provides updates on the Summerhill controversy heating up on Nostrand Avenue in north Crown Heights.

Segment Three: "Tell 'Em Why You Mad"

 

Links:

Jay Smooth: How To Tell Someone They Sound Racist

FUREE: Upcoming Events

NYC Primary Election Results

 

Intro and Outro theme Music:

“City Survival” by MC K-Swift featuring TreZure Empire.

 Episode Music: "Fog Lights” by VYVCH.

Third Rail Eps 39: By Any Means Necessary?

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Mark and Veralyn sit down with Alicia Boyd, the fiery founder of Movement to Protect the People, and pose the question: Are there limits to what an activist should be willing to do in the fight for social justice? Also informing the discussion is an interview with Daniel Goldstein, who looks back on his controversial refusal to leave his home when developers wanted to tear it down to build the Barclays arena and the surrounding high rises. 
 
Segment One: Alicia Boyd and the art of anti-respectibility politics.
Mark and Veralyn interview Alicia Boyd about what it’s like to be known as a grenade thrower among her neighbors as she takes on development and what she describes as community board corruption.
 
Segment Two: Daniel Goldstein and the solitude of disruption.
Mark interviews Daniel Goldstein, the public face of Develop Don’t Destroy, which took on the Mayor, Bertha Lewis, and one of city’s biggest developers in a campaign to stop the building of the Barclays arena. Veralyn, Alicia and Mark then discuss what it takes to be a force of one.

Segment Three: "Tell 'Em Why You Mad"                            

Veralyn and Alicia talk through the mixed feelings of the recent Women's March.

Intro and Outro theme Music:

“City Survival” by MC K-Swift featuring TreZure Empire.

Episode Music:

"Coronea", "Basurera", & "Stipple" by Blue Dot Sessions.

Third Rail Eps 36: Family Affair: Living a Bed-Stuy Gentrification Story

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This month we focus on 17-year-old Corinne Bobb-Semple’s reporting for the Radio Rookie series, not just as an act of journalism, but as something that springs from her family’s legacy of community entrepreneurship and civic action. We explore what it was like to discuss the intricacies of race, class and place in the Bobb-Semple home before, during and after Corinne shared her reporting and insights on gentrification in Central Brooklyn through the Rookies program.

Segment one: Family & Community
We discuss changes on Third Rail and introduce the Radio Rookies program. Our guests, Bed-Stuy residents- social entrepreneur Crystal Bobb-Semple and student Corrinne Bobb-Semple and tell us about the family and community experience that led to Corinne's piece for Radio Rookies.

Segment two: "Bed-Stuy the End of an Era"
We play Corinne Bobb-Semple’s piece about gentrification in Bedford-Stuyvesant. Co-produced by Brooklyn Deep and WNYC.

Segment 3: Can Black People gentrify?
We explore themes like Black versus White gentrifiers; what it means for the future Bed-Stuy and the Bobb- Semple family.
We discuss the process of creating the piece and what the types of responses it may elicit from people.

Segment 4: "Tell 'Em Why You Mad"
Is it sustainable for People of Color to create media, facilitate conversations, and be consumers?  Veralyn and Mark go head to head to discuss what about Corrine's story gets them mad.

TR 33: Relevance of Race in Central Brooklyn

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This month two oral historians, Amaka Okechukwu (Weeksville Heritage Center) and Zaheer Ali (Brooklyn Historical Society), come on to tackle the relevance of race in Central Brooklyn. First by examining the impact of the Crown Heights "Riots." Then we ask, are there dimensions that get missed by identifying Central Brooklyn neighborhoods, as black?

Segment one: Crown Heights 1991: Does the past matter?
As we gear up to commemorate the 25th Anniversary of the Crown Heights “riots," we discuss the neighborhood conditions that lead to what happened in 1991, and the impact those events still have on Central Brooklyn residents today.

Segment two: Do we miss something by calling Central Brooklyn, Black Brooklyn?
We use "black" to describe Central Brooklyn, but is there something overly reductive happening when we do this? Are we missing the rich dimensions of the way people really truly identify themselves, interact with each other, and identify their neighborhood?

Segment 3: "Tell 'Em Why You Mad" Roundup

Third Rail Eps 31: The Case for Hyper Local News

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On this episode, we unpack the role local news plays in neighborhoods like Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights and how outlets reporting in Central Brooklyn are cover gentrification.

Guest: Jarrett Murphy, Executive Editor & Publisher, City Limits

Segment 1: What role does hyperlocal news play in communities like Crown Heights and Bed-Stuy?
As much of what we knew of as metro reporting by legacy news outlets has faded in prominence over the last 10 years-- we want to know what role does hyperlocal news play in communities like Crown Heights and Bed-Stuy?

Segment 2: Reporting on the G word
It’s almost impossible to discuss hyper-local happenings without mentioning gentrification. But how is it currently being framed in mainstream media?


Segment 3: "Tell 'Em Why You Mad" 
Roundup

Third Rail Eps 30: What is the legacy of resilience in Central Brooklyn?

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On this episode we examine the legacy of resilience in Central Brooklyn by reflecting on the history of organizing and movement building here and then by asking what is the present state of the Movement for Black Lives here in Central Brooklyn, New York and nationwide.

Joining us for this discussion are two organizers who have played an important role in shaping the legacy of social and political self-determination that Black Brooklyn is known for today:

Lumumba Bandele, Senior Community Organizer, NAACP Legal Defense Fund

Ejeris Dixon, Founding Director, Vision Change Win


Segment 1: Histories Resilience in Central Brooklyn

While the fight for social change in Central Brooklyn has been city-wide and even national, it has often been anchored by what’s happening locally. We sit down with two organizers who have played a special role in shaping the legacy of social and political self-determination that Black Brooklyn is known for today.

Segment 2: How does Central Brooklyn connect to this movement moment?

In this present “movement moment” we ask: How has the legacy of Central Brooklyn organizing laid the groundwork for #BlackLivesMatter movements in Central Brooklyn, New York and nationwide?

Segment 3: "Tell 'Em Why You Mad" Roundup

Third Rail Local: Inside Airbnb in Central Brooklyn

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Airbnb and the home sharing revolution has landed, with Brooklyn being the most popular destination for Airbnb travelers in the country. Central Brooklyn in particular, has become a hot spot, with tourists from Europe and around the country joining the cultural and demographic changes that have come to define areas like Bedford-Stuyvesant and Crown Heights. 

In this episode of Third Rail Local, we ask what exactly do we know about how Airbnb is affecting the housing market and way of life in Central Brooklyn? Who stands to lose and who stands to gain?

Third Rail Eps 26: Store Frontin’

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We take on the business of black-owned business in Central Brooklyn, by asking two local entrepreneurs what it takes to keep a storefront business alive? And what it means to be a black business owner and black consumer in the midst of gentrification?

Guests:

Crystal Bobb-Semple, CEO, Camp Half Blood
Don Edwards, Co-owner, Locale Village Shop

Segments:

1. What does it take for an entrepreneur to keep a storefront business alive in Central Brooklyn? We see stores come and go, but don’t know what they are dealing with. What is the day-to-day hustle of keeping a retail storefront business look like?

2. What does it mean to be a black business owner and black consumer in the midst of gentrification? Within every black-led movement, there are calls to "buy black," but as Central Brooklyn evolves is there black and white, or just green? 

3. "Tell em why you mad" Roundup

Third Rail Eps 25: The life and times of Brooklyn neighborhoods

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Assemblymember Diana Richardson and community advocate Marlon Peterson join us on Third Rail to look at the people and identities, influencing and claiming Central Brooklyn. We start by asking are elected officials and community organizers are on the same side of community development? Then we ask what neighborhood change means to immigrant communities?

Guests:

Assemblymember Diana Richardson, 43rd Assembly District
Marlon Petersons, Community Advocate & 2015 Soros Justice Fellow

Segments:

1. Are elected officials and community organizers on the same side of community development?

Economic development in Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights is an issue that calls to mind small business owners, big developers, and displaced longtime residents. On this episode, we’re exploring what perspectives elected officials and community organizers hold on the topic.

2. What does neighborhood change mean to immigrant communities?

Crown Heights has been built, over the last half century, as a largely Caribbean immigrant community. As we know, gentrification has taken hold as a different force of neighborhood change. We ask, what does gentrification look like from the perspective of first and second generation immigrants?

3. "Tell em why you mad" Roundup