Only Black-Owned Restaurant On New York Island Receives Racist Hate Mail
Several minority-owned restaurants on City Island in the Bronx, NY, received racist mail and flyers.
As of Monday, November 7, the New York Police Department (NYPD) has announced no arrests, per CBS Newsalthough a source told the outlet that the Hate Crimes Unit had identified a suspect.
Darryl Leliethe owner of Seafood Kingz 2, said he found disturbing racial stereotypes in cartoon form last week in his mailbox, Spectrum NY1 reported. The owner said he would file a formal complaint with local police and hold a rally with elected officials to speak out against the hate.
“You get mad about it, but it just creates more fire and desire in me to keep going and be successful,” Lelie told the outlet.
Lelie opened her family-run seafood restaurant in the Bronx neighborhood in February, making it the first black-owned restaurant in the area. His 21-year-old son, Dalvin, serves as the master chef, offering a variety of seafood options such as king crab legs, fried lobster tails, fish, shrimp, and more.
The owner of Seafood Kingz, who has worked in the restaurant industry for two decades, isn’t surprised by the hate mail. He said NY1 that his older patrons would share stories of how City Island “was like when they were growing up”.
“You couldn’t stay on this island past six or you’d face racial tension or something,” he continued.
Caliente’s on City Island Avenue, another black-owned business, was reportedly targeted, and Jewish-owned Archie’s Tap & Table contacted the NYPD with a complaint.
Little Frida’s Eatery, a family restaurant that serves Mexican cuisine, also received hate mail less than two months after it opened. The owner, Nazareth Perez, said he received a white envelope with a New Jersey stamp. It contained a leaflet and what appeared to be a political cartoon with racist wording at the top.
“It was a little disappointing. It’s 2022 and no one should be kidding,” Perez said, per CBS News.