NY senator: ‘White people don‘t eat the way we do’

Written By kom nampuldu on Rabu, 25 Februari 2015 | 20.49

A black Brooklyn politician declared that "white people don't eat the way we do" as she raged against the closing of a Key Food supermarket to make space for a new store she feared would be too posh for the neighborhood.

State Sen. Velmanette Montgomery was venting against the plan to close a Clinton Hill Key Food to build a residential building with a possible supermarket on the first floor, according to The Brooklyn Paper.

"Supermarkets are an important part of the community. It's an important amenity, especially for black and brown communities," she said at a town-hall meeting at Clinton Hill housing project.

"When you're talking about a white community, it can be a little boutique, because white people don't eat the way we do."

Montgomery later backtracked, saying she regretted the "white people" comment.

"It was an unfortunate statement and I didn't mean to offend anyone," WCBS said.

Others at the town-hall meeting were upset about recent gentrification in the area and the effect on longtime residents.

"If our skin were any other color, this would not be happening," one resident told the paper.

Public Advocate Letitia James also weighed in on the Key Food closure, claiming that the elderly would lose the only market within walking distance.

"I can walk to Myrtle or Dekalb, but the vast majority of these residents cannot," The Brooklyn Paper quoted her as saying.

The supermarket will be closing in the next two months, the paper said, and the owner of the property has not yet fully committed to opening another market on the ground floor.

"We're not obligated to, but we're certainly trying," owner Richard Grobman said, according to the paper. "I can't guarantee it, though."

Grobman implied that the final decision is out of his hands.

"I hope that I'm smart enough to choose an operator that can provide the community what it needs," he said.

"Because if I don't, I'm going to have a big vacant store."


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