Fac­ing racist taunts headon with hope for change

The Buffalo News - - FRONT PAGE - COM­MEN­TARY

Dar­ren Brown-Hall has built a ca­reer in ed­u­ca­tion. In Buf­falo, he grew up deeply in­flu­enced by a school­teacher mother, Linda Brown, and his own youth­ful pas­sion for math and physics even­tu­ally led him to the class­room.

He is now an ad­min­is­tra­tor, the chief of staff for the Buf­falo Pub­lic Schools. As a par­ent and an ed­u­ca­tor, Brown-Hall, 45, tries to see op­por­tu­ni­ties for both learn­ing and teach­ing in the un­pre­dictable and some­times harsh push-and-shove that goes with ev­ery­day life.

The past few weeks were as painful a chal­lenge to that phi­los­o­phy as he ever faced, af­ter his own son was the tar­get of bla­tant racist taunts, clearly recorded on video (Warn­ing: ex­plicit lan­guage), dur­ing a youth hockey game.

The in­ci­dent ex­ploded last week into a na­tional story, when shock waves from the video led of­fi­cials to can­cel the league play­offs. The footage de­picts ac­tion to­ward the end of a Jan. 20 game at the North­town Cen­ter in Amherst for the Mul­ti­ple Or­ga­ni­za­tion House League, which is part of the Western New York Am­a­teur Hockey League.

In a video cap­tured by an­other par­ent, play­ers from the Cheek­towaga War­riors 18-and-un­der team can be heard mak­ing loud ape noises and shout­ing “(ex­ple­tive) mon­key” to­ward Roshaun Brown-Hall, 17, who plays on an Amherst Youth Hockey As­so­ci­a­tion team.

Dar­ren Brown-Hall was at a birth­day party that day for his mother. His hus­band, Chris BrownHall, was at the rink to watch their son, but he did not hear the taunt­ing be­cause he was seated too far away

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.