Letters to the editor, Mar. 29

Playing nice in conversion conversation

Re: Letters, “Guterman plan deserves a chance,” “Guterman ad is divisive,” T&V, Mar. 22

I read with interest both letters to the editor this past week and agree with the person who says that Guterman’s advertising is divisive and misinformed. I am siding with the choices that our Tenants Association has made, not because I occasionally volunteer for the association, but rather because the board seems to have done its homework with researching the issues of condominium vs. cooperative ownership. We ought to trust their conclusions.

We can all learn how they reached them by watching the video the TA just released on this subject or reading the article it published recently in this newspaper. It seems to me that those who support Guterman’s plan are motivated by greed. I choose my community of neighbors instead.

We have accomplished a lot as a community by acting in a united manner.  It is not possible for each of us to weigh in on the decision (of condo vs. co-op). Rather, we can impact decisions through the electoral process, which has just been announced for this year. Anyone who disagrees with the actions of the TA board can and should run against it. I suspect they will find that most tenants support the current board but critics cannot know that unless they express their own views through the election process.

Finally, name calling and insults have no place even when directed at people we strongly disagree with. After all, if one can lower himself/herself to that level with regards to Guterman, what’s to stop them from doing the same when responding to my letter? I certainly wouldn’t want to own a place in a community where civil discourse has evaporated.

Lastly, people, please assume your position and sign your letters.  Where’s the credibility with “Name withheld?”

Alain Montour, PCV

Editor’s note: We could not agree with Alain Montour more on the “name withheld” factor. While we have always wanted to protect authors’ privacy, and understand that some people are trying to avoid arguments or may have a work conflict that prevents them from feeling comfortable airing their opinions publicly, the fact is that letters that are signed — with a real name — have far more credibility than those that don’t. We strongly encourage writers to sign their names when offering their points of view in this paper.

The Post with the most… problems, that is

To the Editor:
Every resident of our lovely community is plagued by a proverbial hellhole located at 432 East 14th Street. I am, of course, referring to the Peter Stuyvesant Post Office.

I’m a new resident of Stuy Town, and I’m failing to understand the purpose of a post office that doesn’t deliver packages.

Their alternative business model seems to be: 1. Pretend to have “missed” the customer when they weren’t at home (even if they were, and even if a signature was not required); 2. Wait for the customer to come in and complain about a missing package; 3. Make that customer wait in a special line for 45 minutes; 4. Treat the customer like a bucket of garbage while (hopefully) passing the package through a bulletproof window because they couldn’t be bothered to deliver in the first

So far this year, the Post Office has failed to deliver five of my packages, two of which have apparently been lost forever. Every time I have to go in there, I’m treated to the sight of postal “workers” arguing with (and sometimes cursing at) their customers, many of whom are senior citizens. After reading the horror stories on Yelp (http://www.yelp.com/biz/us-post-office-new-york-6) it is clear why Yelp has given our Post Office the lowest possible rating of one star.

Is there anything that we can do about this pathetic excuse for a Post Office? Do other ST/PCV residents have similar experiences that they would like to share?

Dave Hensley, ST

Contraception harmful on many levels

Steve Sanders feels the Church is wrong to condemn contraception, and Monsignor Ivers has presented the Catholic teaching on the issue. But there are many non-religious reasons why contraception is harmful.

Sociologically, contraception has led to more adultery (because there is less fear of an illegitimate child) and more divorces, leaving single mothers with lowered income and children more exposed to poverty, poorer education, more delinquency and, later, crime.

It has even led to more abortions, since people engage in sex more frequently because of a false sense of security that pregnancy will positively be prevented, and for some forms of contraception such is not the case; when an unwanted pregnancy does occur they resort to abortion.

Environmentally, fresh water fish in western states are rapidly dying off because hormones in the urine of women using the pill find their way into sewers and streams, causing the fish there to be overwhelmingly female, which is not a suitable condition for producing another generation.

Economically, the number of young people entering the workforce is reduced, thereby reducing the contributions they could make to Social Security and Medicare, which could largely offset the increased payments for our currently larger numbers of seniors.

Don Murray, ST

Bishops’ claims sound like politics

Re: Letter “Catholic point of view on birth control, “ T&V, Mar. 1

In 2000, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ruled that refusing to cover contraceptives in an employee prescription health plan was in violation of Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. That ruling still stands. The only new part of President Obama’s policy is that women won’t have to co-pay to get prescription contraceptives.

That policy was amended to allow a way for religiously affiliated institutions to opt out of paying for contraception in their health plans. Perhaps forgetting Pope Benedict XVI’s admonition that the church does not seek to impose on those who do not share the faith ways of thinking and modes of conduct proper to the faith,  the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) declared total opposition to any compromise and demanded removal of the birth control provision from the health care law altogether.

The bishops’ religious liberty claims are in direct conflict with women’s right to health care. The proper role of government is to co-ordinate a lot of competing rights and interests so as to benefit the greatest possible number of people. Obama’s compromise does just that, while the USCCB’s hard line response looks less like an attempt to build consensus than an exercise of political muscle. People have noticed.

Obama’s compromise is supported by nearly two-thirds of Americans (including sixty percent of Roman Catholics), the Catholic Health Association (the nation’s largest group of nonprofit health systems with some 750,000 employees) and a number of other large
Catholic institutions.

Also: The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services lists numerous studies supporting the claim that contraception coverage adds little upfront cost to insurers while saving money over time by preventing unplanned pregnancies.

J. Sicoransa, ST

Spreading the joy

One situation not mentioned in  “Open Letter to Students in ST/PCV” (T&V, Mar. 8) occurs with student crammed into apartments with pressurized walls is that the entertainment areas are now spread into all rooms.

So what I had last night, Thursday, were students and their guests having a lively, loud conversation at 12:30 a.m. punctuated with bongo drums, right next to my bed. Security was called twice.
I wouldn’t buy my apartment either.

Guterman may be right in saying that Brookfield would rather many tenants don’t buy so they would have the right to purchase the apartments later on. The prices may not make sense for stabilized tenants to purchase and as was mentioned at the Baruch meeting by a Brookfield representative, there will be a limited number offered of the second tier lower priced apartments.

Name withheld, ST

4 thoughts on “Letters to the editor, Mar. 29

  1. RE: Where’s the credibility with “Name withheld?”

    This Newspaper has had a long standing tradition (that the editor is conveniently forgetting) of withholding letter writers names. The plain and simple reason for this is that Metropolitan Life and any subsequent managers would hold dissenters in contempt and make their lives difficult if they chose to do so. Residents of ST/PCV lived in fear of their landlord, who could (if they chose to do so) create a case against them for non-renewal. This was quite easy for them to do in the days before the Rent Stabilization Laws protected tenants from unlawful eviction. Perhaps we are living in different times now, but I think many people are still loath to stir the potential ire of their landlord.

    Intelligent people are able to judge the merits based on the facts, not the name of the writer.

  2. Re: Mr. Don Murray’s comments on the non-religious dangers of contraception.

    There are always potential uninteded positive and negative consequences of all behaviors. Automobiles were invented more than 100 years ago. And, now every year we expect in our country (almost exactly) 40,000 deaths related to these kinds of vehicles. Should we have banned cars? Or, perhaps now? Every surgery performed can lead to death. Yet, the expected positive results usually trump the decision for these types of medical procedures.

    Also, not doing anything has its positive and negative implications. Imagine if there was no means of contraception: without it, the population would increase exponentially as our economy would be unable to cope with the expanded number of births; women would lose a great deal of freedom which they recently gained.

    Margaret Sanger who was a pioneer in this area freed many women from enormous burdens. Frankly, I can’t understand why supposedly rational people are bringing this up again. The U. S. Supreme Court in the landmark Griswald case stuck down the banning of birth control legislation which Connecticut had well past the middle of the 20th Century.

    We seems to be going “retro” in terms of many aspects of life in this nation which I thought were settled issues. E.g.,
    Charles Darwin’s important scientific work being challenged…

    David Chowes, PCV

  3. Re: Playing Nice… Would like to suggest that Mr. Montour go to http://www.pcvstconversionforum.blogspot.com/ and click on the links for condo-coop comparison & scorecards, the results of detailed research. Some of the co-op/condo statements made by the TA are not accurate. Also, the TA only presents one side of the picture. Kindly go to the suggested links for both sides.

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