Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin appears to be taken by surprise that black students enjoy chess

by 14/07/2018 01:59:00 0 comments 1 Views

Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin called 'tone-deaf' and out of touch after suggesting black students playing chess in inner city middle school is 'not something you think of in this section of town'

  • The comments came as Bevin was taking a tour of Nativity Academy,  a school made up of 86 per cent black student
  • The video immediately drew condemnation from community leaders, who bemoaned Bevin's apparent lack of understanding about the community 
  • Secretary for the Chickasaw Neighborhood Association Donovan Taylor said that Bevin's comments were 'tone-deaf' 
  • Elizabeth Kuhn, the governor's spokeswoman, said in a statement that it was unfortunate 'some' were trying to shift the focus away from the students  

By Daniel Roth For Dailymail.com

Published: 23:57 EDT, 13 July 2018 | Updated: 01:59 EDT, 14 July 2018

Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin found himself mired in controversy on Friday after expressing surprise in a promotional video that black students play chess.

While standing outside a Louisville middle school known for its elite chess club, the Republican governor states that the club is 'not something you necessarily would have thought of when you think of this section of town.'

'I'm going to go in and meet the members of the West Louisville Chess Club,' Bevin says in the video released by his office on Tuesday. 

The comments came as Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (pictured) was taking a tour of Nativity Academy, a school made up of 86 per cent black student
The comments came as Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (pictured) was taking a tour of Nativity Academy, a school made up of 86 per cent black student

The comments came as Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (pictured) was taking a tour of Nativity Academy, a school made up of 86 per cent black student

Nativity Academy is an independent private school in Phoenix Hill and is home to the West Louisville Chess Club
Nativity Academy is an independent private school in Phoenix Hill and is home to the West Louisville Chess Club

Nativity Academy is an independent private school in Phoenix Hill and is home to the West Louisville Chess Club

'Not something you necessarily would have thought of when you think of this section of town.'

The comments came as Bevin was taking a tour of Nativity Academy, according to The Courier-Journal, a school made up of 86 per cent black student and 1 per cent white students.  

Nativity Academy is an independent private school in Phoenix Hill. 

Secretary for the Chickasaw Neighborhood Association Donovan Taylor said that Bevin's comments were 'tone-deaf'
Secretary for the Chickasaw Neighborhood Association Donovan Taylor said that Bevin's comments were 'tone-deaf'

Secretary for the Chickasaw Neighborhood Association Donovan Taylor said that Bevin's comments were 'tone-deaf'

The video immediately drew condemnation from West Louisville leaders, who bemoaned Bevin's apparent lack of understanding about the community. 

'It was just an obvious move by the governor to take photos with the African-American community,' David James, a councilman representing District 6 in Louisville, told the Courier Journal.

'To perpetuate a stereotype of the African-American community like that is unbelievable.'

Secretary for the Chickasaw Neighborhood Association Donovan Taylor said that Bevin's comments were 'tone-deaf' and aided in fostering divisions between communities in Louisville.   

Elizabeth Kuhn, the governor's spokeswoman, said in a statement that it was unfortunate 'some' were trying to shift the focus away from the students
Elizabeth Kuhn, the governor's spokeswoman, said in a statement that it was unfortunate 'some' were trying to shift the focus away from the students

Elizabeth Kuhn, the governor's spokeswoman, said in a statement that it was unfortunate 'some' were trying to shift the focus away from the students

According to neighborhoodscout.com , a site that ranks the safest cities in America, West Louisville is listed as having one of the highest crime rates in America
According to neighborhoodscout.com , a site that ranks the safest cities in America, West Louisville is listed as having one of the highest crime rates in America

According to neighborhoodscout.com , a site that ranks the safest cities in America, West Louisville is listed as having one of the highest crime rates in America

'Blacks in west Louisville enjoy chess, tennis, and many other activities not associated with guns and violence,' Taylor said. 

'To think less of West Louisville shows your thinking of the residents of the area.'

'It was a very funny video,' Taylor added. 'It's laughable to have such a small view of West Louisville. It is definitely offensive. If it's not racist, it's classist. It's disturbing.' 

Pushing back against the notion that Bevin was being culturally insensitive, Elizabeth Kuhn, the governor's spokeswoman, said in a statement that Bevin met with the chess club to 'showcase an important program that is encouraging sportsmanship and character building among Kentucky's youth.' 

'It is disappointing that some are trying to shift the focus away from the incredible accomplishments of these talented kids,' Kuhn added. 

According to neighborhoodscout.com, a site that ranks the safest cities in America, West Louisville is listed as having one of the highest crime rates in America. With a system that ranks cities with a score of 100 as the safest, Louisville came in at five.

The video immediately drew condemnation from community leaders, who bemoaned Bevin's apparent lack of understanding about the community
The video immediately drew condemnation from community leaders, who bemoaned Bevin's apparent lack of understanding about the community

The video immediately drew condemnation from community leaders, who bemoaned Bevin's apparent lack of understanding about the community

  

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