Easter Festivities in Stuy Town

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On Sunday morning, hundreds of families headed out to Stuyvesant Oval for a day of Easter celebrations that included a concert by The Kids Music Underground, a visit from the Easter Bunny, and an egg hunt. With the weather hovering around 60 degrees, the crowd also included plenty of adults in festive hats lingering on their way to the Fifth Avenue Easter Parade. Kids, meanwhile, also got to participate in arts & crafts, face painting, and a chance to get up close and personal with ducklings, goats, a kangaroo, an enormous, lop-eared bunny and other animals from the Two by Two Petting Zoo.

Photos by Sabina Mollot

Letters to the editor, Apr. 12

Guterman plan offers tenants more control

The TA/Brookfield partnership compromises future resident control over the complex and exposes us to inevitable and costly litigation. It is bizarre to give Brookfield a permanent legal-financial stake in the management of our community post conversion.

And it appears to be founded on the pie in the sky assumption Brookfield’s priorities will always be in tune with our own. In reality conflict with this high-powered real estate company would be inevitable. With millions of dollars at stake and a team of attorneys on the payroll 24/7 Brookfield is armed and ready to instigate costly litigation over rental or other policies that constrict their profits. And they could win too, forcing us all to live with the results. While non-eviction conversions are common in NYC, I doubt you find another one that included such an odd and risky invitation from a Tenants Association.

Yet again, the Guterman-Westwood plan is more sensible and typical of non-eviction conversions. They’d implement their plan within two years and depart, leaving the residents totally in control of the complex. We could keep Rose or hire another management co. to operate the complex in accordance with rules set forth by residents with no interference from a third party like Brookfield. Again, that is how these conversions typically conclude. So the obvious question is – What has Brookfield offered the TA that is so valuable they’re willing to compromise resident control of the community and expose us to the risks of future legal conflicts with yet another powerful real estate firm?

Name withheld, ST Continue reading

Soapbox: Light shone on child slavery, trafficking

The following column was submitted by reader John Cappelletti in response to recent letters published in Town & Village on the contraception debate. This includes the letter, “Abstinence… makes the heart grow fonder,” published on April 5.

What a person believes is often more real to them than reality.  For example, centuries ago people believed that the earth was flat and that the sun moved around the earth. This was their reality and no amount of facts could persuade them they were wrong. In fact, if you disagreed with them you could lose your life, which is why scientists like Galileo had to deny that the world was round.

Nowadays, people still deny the truth because it may not agree with their religious or political beliefs, like evolution for example. Despite this, I’d like to share these facts, not theories or beliefs, about abstinence, contraception and bringing children into the world.

A report called “Unwed Mothers Now Claim Most Births Under 30” in The New York Times (2/18/12) states: “Researches have consistently found that children born outside marriage face elevated risks of falling into poverty, failing in school or suffering emotional and behavioral problems.” In the report about Loraine County, Ohio,  “63 percent of births to women under 30 occur outside marriage,” the result of unprotected sex, the lack of sex education and beliefs.Another report about a child whose “uncle had sold her to a job placement agency” called “Maid’s Cries Cast Light on Child Labor in India” (The New York Times, 4/5/2012) states: “The International Labor Organization has found that India has 12.5 million laborers between the ages of 5 and 14 with roughly 20 percent working as domestic help. Continue reading