SMH… No this chick did not just say she’s pretty sure slavery was still poppin’ in BK in 1898!
Brooklyn Rep. Yvette Clarke was the laughingstock of Brooklyn — and the nation — Wednesday after offering a preposterous explanation of New York history on “The Colbert Report.”
The pol told Stephen Colbert, in a spot that aired Tuesday night, that slavery persisted in Brooklyn until as late as 1898. In reality, slavery was legally abolished in New York in 1827.
“Some have called Brooklyn’s decision to become part of New York City ‘The Great Mistake of 1898,’ ” Colbert said. “If you could get in a time machine and go back to 1898, what would you say to those Brooklynites?”
“I would say to them, ‘Set me free,’ ” Clarke responded.
Pressed by Colbert to say what she would have been freed from, the African-American Democrat responded, “Slavery.”
“Slavery. Really? I didn’t realize there was slavery in Brooklyn in 1898,” Colbert followed.
“I’m pretty sure there was,” Clarke continued.
“Who would be enslaving you in 1898 in New York?” the quick-witted comic questioned, never one to let slip a priceless live TV moment.
Clarke responded: “The Dutch.”
Wrong again: The Dutch formally ceded control of New Amsterdam to the English in 1674.
Julie Golia of the Brooklyn Historical Society was taken aback by the congresswoman’s lack of historical knowledge.
“Oh, my goodness!” she exclaimed. “Oh, no! There wasn’t slavery in Brooklyn in 1898.”
“It’s inexcusable,” Brooklyn Borough Historian Ron Schweiger added. Minister Sylvia Kinard, who lost to Clarke in the June Democratic primary, said her comments show “the quality and intelligence of representation” in the district, which includes a large swath of central Brooklyn, with Prospect Park nearly in its center.
Clarke, who attended Edward R. Murrow High School in Brooklyn, was criticized by some of her constituents in Flatbush.
“She’s crazy,” said Emily Mathews, 46. “Why would she say that? She’s supposed to have knowledge of these things, especially for her own neighborhood.”
Clarke, a former city councilwoman, came under scrutiny for lying in campaign literature in 2004 and 2005 by claiming she graduated from Oberlin College. She attended the school, but didn’t graduate. She blamed a bad memory for those misrepresentations.
As to the Colbert disaster, Clarke’s spokeswoman, Kristia Beaubrun, said her boss was just joking. “It’s supposed to be humorous.
Based on the feedback that we’re getting, some viewers understood that and some viewers did not understand,” she said, adding that Clarke couldn’t comment because she was at the Democratic National Convention.
She actually sounded pretty serious, but her expression did look like she might have been joking. Still, something like that she should have clarified if she was joking. SMH.
We got to do better Yvette. You got to do better. Get it together girrrrrrl.