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Boy 'glad' he spoke out after hearing racial slurs at Pennsylvania swim club

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(CNN) -- Tears streamed down 12-year-old Marcus Allen's face in 2009, as he recalled how members of a private suburban Philadelphia swim club had hurled racial slurs and worried aloud if he and other mostly minority day campers might steal from them.

Today, Marcus is just about to turn 15 and hit the gridiron as a running back on his high school football team. He has grown up in more ways than one -- including having experienced discrimination firsthand and seen the U.S. justice system in action, its pursuit of justice driven in large part by his and other adolescents' accounts of what they had seen and heard that summer.

"I'm glad that people saw and felt what I felt," Marcus, who is black, told CNN.

The U.S. Justice Department announced Thursday that it and the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission reached a settlement with the now-defunct Valley Club of Huntingdon Valley, two and a half years after filing a lawsuit against the club.

Under terms of the deal, the club -- which filed for bankruptcy in November 2009 a few months after the incident and had its property sold for $1.46 million the following June -- agreed to payouts to more than 50 children like Marcus who were part of the Creative Steps Day Care Center, their counselors and Creative Steps. The distributed money includes whatever "remaining assets" from the club's property sale are left over, with $65,000 set aside to create a diversity council made up of former Valley Club members, Creative Steps counselors, campers and their families to promote community healing, the U.S. Justice Department said.

Marcus' mother, Aletha Wright, who owns Creative Steps, told CNN on Friday that her son grew up in a white neighborhood and goes to school with mostly white students. In his first 12 years, she said her son hadn't had any problems.

"This was a culture shock for him, because Marcus didn't know racism existed," Wright said.

The day care center based out of northeast Philadelphia had paid the Valley Club $1,950 in June of 2009 so its camp children could access its pool over the summer.

But when young day campers came to the predominantly white club for the first time on June 29, "the children reported hearing racial slurs," the Justice Department said.

On July 3, 2009, "the club refunded the day camp's membership fee and prohibited the children from returning to swim" according to the federal agency -- a decision the Valley Club contended then was not due to the campers' race but because "we underestimated the capacity of our facilities."

Marcus, who was then 12, told CNN soon after the incident that he'd heard some club members say, "What are these black kids here? They might steal from us."

"It's kind of sad that people still thinking like this," the tearful boy said. "I thought those days were over."

http://www.cnn.com/2...tion/index.html

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*yawn* so a private club wants to exclude some people? Who cares.....


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02/07/2011 - Medical!

03/15/2011 - Interview in Montreal! - Approved!!!

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No.

In fact, the most racist part of this country is New England. So it's even worse in Boston.

Everything you believe is wrong.

Thanks for spitting in my Dairy Queen, Oreo Blizzard.

*yawn* so a private club wants to exclude some people? Who cares.....

A private club can't discriminate based on race. It's unconstitutional.

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A private club can't discriminate based on race. It's unconstitutional.

Sure they can. It happens every day. You just don't get to hear about it and most people don't want to be a part of those 'clubs.'


nfrsig.jpg

The Great Canadian to Texas Transfer Timeline:

2/22/2010 - I-129F Packet Mailed

2/24/2010 - Packet Delivered to VSC

2/26/2010 - VSC Cashed Filing Fee

3/04/2010 - NOA1 Received!

8/14/2010 - Touched!

10/04/2010 - NOA2 Received!

10/25/2010 - Packet 3 Received!

02/07/2011 - Medical!

03/15/2011 - Interview in Montreal! - Approved!!!

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Sure they can. It happens every day. You just don't get to hear about it and most people don't want to be a part of those 'clubs.'

Um, no. It's unconstitutional. You can dance around like a fact-fairy all you want, but that doesn't change the fact. Our Constitution protects our civil rights, even from private enterprise.

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Um, no. It's unconstitutional. You can dance around like a fact-fairy all you want, but that doesn't change the fact. Our Constitution protects our civil rights, even from private enterprise.

He means in reality many do and in reality most do not complain and in reality that means they usually can.. and that's true.

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Um, no. It's unconstitutional. You can dance around like a fact-fairy all you want, but that doesn't change the fact. Our Constitution protects our civil rights, even from private enterprise.

AJ understands.

The constitution doesn't protect your right to be a part of something either, as much as you might like to think so. I can come up with a dozen other reasons to exclude someone if I really wanted to other than race. People are creative. When there's a will, there's a way.

The government discriminates against races in their actions and blatently does so, yet when you cry about that you're considered a racist. Kind of ironic really.


nfrsig.jpg

The Great Canadian to Texas Transfer Timeline:

2/22/2010 - I-129F Packet Mailed

2/24/2010 - Packet Delivered to VSC

2/26/2010 - VSC Cashed Filing Fee

3/04/2010 - NOA1 Received!

8/14/2010 - Touched!

10/04/2010 - NOA2 Received!

10/25/2010 - Packet 3 Received!

02/07/2011 - Medical!

03/15/2011 - Interview in Montreal! - Approved!!!

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