D.C. Council member Marion Barry stepped up his campaign on Thursday to mend relations with the Asian community, apologizing again for disparaging remarks he made about Koreans and Filipinos and pledging to work to improve ties between them and African Americans.
Yet on his way toward racial harmony, Barry (D-Ward 8) committed another faux pas — this time directed at Polish people — and presided over a sometimes raucous community meeting at which African Americans repeated complaints about the way Koreans maintain carry-out shops.
Representatives of the Korean, Filipino, Chinese and Japanese communities attended the meeting, held at a church in Southeast Washington.
“Korean stores are filthy,” a woman could be heard saying at the meeting, which was closed to reporters. The woman, who is black, later identified herself as Geraldine Hall and said she lives in the District.