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Edward KocheEdward Koche
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I did, you'll stop me. Eddie Costikyan was then county leader and Hilda Stokeley, who was a black district leader in Harlem -- they did a study of the schools in Manhattan from the point of view of what they were getting and their condition. And when they came back, they addressed the county district leaders, and I was one of them, and I remember Hilda Stokeley saying how bad the schools were -- they didn't have toilet paper in the black schools, and they didn't have books, and they didn't have a whole host of things. And she said, and I remember it so well: “I want you to understand, we don't want our kids sitting next to your white kids in the school -- that's not what we want -- what we want is a better education for our children. And give us the money so we can do it and give us the books and that sort of thing.” And I said to her, “But, Hilda, what you're saying is separate but equal is equal, and the Supreme Court has said that that's not true.” And she took sort of a long pause and she looked at me straight in the eye and she said, “I wouldn't tell a Jew how to bake a bagel.” I thought that summed it up. I didn't appreciate it at the time.

What she was saying, and I concur at this point in time with her, is: quality education does not come from racial balance or sending black kids into white schools or white kids into black schools unless, which was the thought at that time, that doing so would make the schools better because (this was the theory at that

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