The Q at Parkside

(for those for whom the Parkside Q is their hometrain)

News and Nonsense from the Brooklyn neighborhood of Lefferts and environs, or more specifically a neighborhood once known as Melrose Park. Sometimes called Lefferts Gardens. Or Prospect-Lefferts Gardens. Or PLG. Or North Flatbush. Or Caledonia (west of Ocean). Or West Pigtown. Across From Park Slope. Under Crown Heights. Near Drummer's Grove. The Side of the Park With the McDonalds. Jackie Robinson Town. Home of Lefferts Manor. West Wingate. Near Kings County Hospital. Or if you're coming from the airport in taxi, maybe just Flatbush is best.

Friday, August 15, 2014

The Q and Friends Sponsor A Senate Debate: August 28

Hey y'all. With pals Demetrius Lawrence and Avi Leshes, I'll be moderating a debate for the State Senate position currently vacant since the ascent of Eric Adams to BP. I hope you all come, because it looks to be a tight race. And there's LOTS of money and issues at stake in these Albany gigs, even if we're all a bit tired of the rancor and corruption. Let's get at least one good politician representing the neighborhood? (Caveat: you may be part of Kevin Parker's district, though most Leffertsians are in the 20th District. You should come though...these guys will represent the area for a loooooong time, if precedent means anything.)


diak said...

Since this debate is being held in a Lubavitch Yeshiva, are women going to relegated to a separate section in the back? Are people who are deemed to be dressed "inappropriately" or "immodestly" by Hasidic standards (which is nearly everybody in the summertime). going to be turned away?
In case you think this isn't plausible note the appearance of "modesty warnings" posted in Crown Heights:

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Been thinking about your comment, Diak. Look, I have no idea whether anything of these ludicrous signs will be posted anywhere near the school, but I will point out that the sign you referenced was not, as far as I can tell, the result of a campaign by any particular person or group (at least none is mentioned in the "article"). Meaning, it could be the work of a lone idiot.

Certainly, were any legitimate actor implying that they owned the neighborhood, this would have been a very big deal indeed. Instead, you've basically helped give the impression that this is somehow the official word out of 770 Eastern Parkway.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

In other words, yes, I will be moderating in my thong bikini briefs, which leave little to the imagination. Got a problem with that? Find another debate.

diak said...

Your choice of attire is not a problem for me. Maybe you should suggest that the candidates come similarly (un)clothed. That way we'd be sure they aren't hiding anything!

But seriously, the modesty signs do show a presumption that at least some Hasidics feel they can tell people the proper way to dress on the streets—which they have no right to do. What makes you think they won't tell people how to dress in one of their own facilities? Which they have every right to do.

Regardless of whether the signs are the "official word" or the doings of said "lone idiot," Orthodox Jewish customs and regulations are what they are. I'm simply asking what assurances do we have that this debate is open to everyone and all attendees—be they male, female, straight, gay, or, I don't know, wearing flip-flops—will be treated equally.

Clarkson FlatBed said...

Understood. But there IS a HUGE difference between "official word" and "lone idiot." Some lone idiot has been plastering anti-white-people graffiti in the subways, but I'm neither taking it too seriously nor making any extended assumptions about whether people of color are now out to get honkies.

As to the burden of proof, I think rather than the Orthodox issuing statements of equal access, I'd rather assume the best and react only if I'm offended when I get there. The sign on the tree is pretty silly and harmless if you ask me. Though in fact, as a result of that sign, I am now much more likely to wear pants on Jewish-majority streets than on Haitian-majority streets, where for me, pants are clearly optional, and it's perfectly fine to pee in public within view of kids and pets.

To me, this whole issue should be filed under the mountain, not Mohammed's mountain of course, but the one that resembles a molehill.

"if the Molehill won't come to the Rebbe, then the Rebbe must go to the Molehill." I read that somewhere...Highlights for Children maybe?

diak said...

As someone who often speaks up for those who are discriminated against, you're addressing this very cavalierly. Then again, you are a straight white male over the age of 13 so if you wished to join the Hasidic community, you would be afforded all rights and privileges. That's not at all the case for those in other demographics...

The signs are "silly" and "harmless"? Yeah, they're hardly the end of the world and easily ignored. But would you feel the same way if signs appeared in say, Bensonhurst, that said "This is a WHITE neighborhood! Black teenagers, show respect! Remove your hoods and raise your trousers!"
I doubt it.

Anyway, see you there. I'll be wearing pants...