Flatbush’s Caribbean community took part in the annual West Indian American Day Carnival, a massive parade that occurs annually on Labor Day on Eastern Parkway in Crown Heights. Maria Dasilva came to the Flatbush section to shop for her costume for the huge celebration. She was an immigrant coming from Brazil, a country where carnivals and sambas are common. “There is little difference between the carnivals” in Brazil and the West Indies, she said, “except, you have calypso. We have samba.” The parade has become such a big deal in Brooklyn that Mayor Rudolph Giuliani began to march in the parade himself. However, due to this there was a lot of political tension and agenda surrounding the parade. Once a political leader joins a rather cultural event, it becomes clear that the leader wants to gain the fondness and the support of the people in the event. This was especially evident after the Abner Louima case; outrage over his treatment was evident in the parade.[1][2]

[1] Garry Pierre-Pierre, “Mood Turning Political For West Indian Parade,” New York Times, August 31, 1997.

[2] Charisse Jones, “West Indian Parade Returns to Fill Streets of Brooklyn,” New York Times, Sep 1, 1996.