Letters to the Editor, Jan. 28

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

TWC should consider the blind

On January 6, State Senator Brad Hoylman reached out to Robert D. Marcus,chairman and CEO of Time Warner Cable to ask about implanting services to make more television programs accessible to the blind. This is a copy of that letter.

Dear Mr. Marcus:

I am writing to state my concerns regarding the lack of accessibility features offered to Time Warner Cable customers who are blind or visually impaired.

Federal Communications Commission Chair Tom Wheeler has recognized the necessity to “dramatically simplify the ability of individuals who are blind and visually impaired to view television programming” by making video devices with “talking menus” and “talking guides” available to all consumers by December of this year. While I am pleased that the FCC has committed to ensuring that all cable providers adhere to high standards of accessibility, I am disappointed that enforcement will not go into effect until the end of 2016. Until that time, Time Warner Cable’s inaccessible interface and programs leave many blind or visually impaired consumers without the ability to take advantage of an activity that so many of us take for granted.

I implore you to take action as a responsible corporate citizen to improve the standard of living for your blind and visually impaired customers. Comcast has already set an example with its simple to use and accessible technology, making it possible for its blind and visually impaired customers to enjoy quality television programming with ease and independence. Time Warner Cable must step up as a leader in cable television technology and provide its customers with the accessibility features they need. Moreover, Time Warner Cable must implement basic accessibility standards, including the availability of television guides and documents written in Braille and the option to increase font sizes of on-screen menus for those with limited visibility.

Over 8 million Americans have a visual impairment, including nearly 400,000 New Yorkers. I recently had a conversation with a constituent of mine who is legally blind. He describes himself as a “movie buff” and recounts childhood memories of bonding with his father over favorite television shows. Despite his love for film, he is unable to fully access Time Warner Cable’s expansive movie and television options without great difficulty or assistance.

I urge you to take responsibility for giving consumers with visual impairments access to the same compelling and exciting television programming available to anyone else. Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Brad Hoylman
New York State Senate, 27th District


Ferry wouldn’t be the only noisy thing

Re: “ST/PCV residents mostly in support of 20th St. ferry landing,” T&V, Jan. 21

Last week this newspaper reported that Anne Greenberg, a director of ST-PCV Tenants Association, is opposed to the proposed ferry landing at 20th Street and Stuyvesant Cove. Despite nearly universal support for the project that will bring much needed affordable river transportation to our neighborhood, Greenberg, in an open public forum, denounced the project citing “noise” as the reason.

Ms. Greenberg makes an interesting point: Noise could be a serious issue, given that the ferry landing will be east of that oasis of silence and tranquility known as the FDR Drive. And, certainly, ferries plying the roiling waters of the East River once every half-hour will disturb Ms. Greenberg’s quiet enjoyment of the traffic’s gentle hum.

If Ms. Greenberg wishes to speak for all neighbors and working families, she should do a little research ahead of time regarding the community’s transportation needs – and the pre-existing levels of ambient sound created by a highway.

Name withheld, ST


How does Donald do it?

CNN reported last week that 10 percent of college graduates (that’s grads – not simply people who have just attended college) thought that Judge Judy was a member of the Supreme Court. And this resonated with me vis-à-vis the seeming inexplicable huge numbers who want Mr. Trump to be the next president.

He may know and say little concerning the substance needed for the most important office on the world – but, he surely has the street smarts to understand and appeal to so many ignorant peoplewho comprise a large percent of the electorate.

So, he accepts the support of cognitively challenged celebrity Sarah Palin and knows that her moronic series of free associations would complement that of his.

Ergo, we need significant improvements in our deteriorated education system – badly!

David Chowes, PCV

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10 thoughts on “Letters to the Editor, Jan. 28

  1. Re: My letter, “How does Donald do it?

    Let me add that Mr. Trump is an egomaniac (which emanates from deep feelings of insecurity dating back to his troubled youth) — as his father who began the real estate company which Donald inherited had to transfer him to military school for discipline.. Knowing nothing about the actual role and powers of the U. S president — be fashions himself as a bully fascist.

    And, speaking of fascists, Ted Cruz is also one — and if elected to the White House he would attempt to enact a Christian type of sharia law — trying to end the power of the First Amendment and create a theocracy.

    William F. Buckley, Jr. (whom I had great respect for as he taught me a great deal) may now be turning in his grave. It is no wonder that your father’s G. O. P. has morphed into an extreme right wing party.

    We are now in potential quite dangerous waters.

    • Everything you said about Trump could have been said about Obama. Given that Obama is the worst president in the history of the US, that’s not much of an endorsement I know. As for Palin, well lets see…she was Governor of Alaska, ran for Vice-President of the US, has made a fortune on television, etc, etc., etc and you I believe from your voluminous writings were a college professor. Too bad most professors are just professional agitators who attempt to indoctrinate students for the far left wing Democratic party. Our education system wouldn’t be among the worst in the world if professors learned to teach and stop the crap. Ever hear the expression those who can, do: those who can’t teach.

      • “Fred,” I would suggest that you reread the entirety of my original letter and if you see my many comments posted on nytimes.com by googling them you will find that I am actually in agreement with philosopher Edmund Burke.

        Also, the very word “conservative” has so many meanings, I really don’t know when this word is alluded to what it means.

        In my lifetime I have found that NY Senator, UN Ambassador and Harvard professor Daniel Patrick Moynihan (who served under both parties) just looked at the evidence that was presented in each situation with as little prejudice as was humanly possible and called the game as he saw it.

        He was most ethical, articulate and always polite. You can find many of his speeches and appearances on TV via C-SPAN3 or C-SPAN.org.

      • “Given that Obama is the worst president in the history of the US, that’s not much of an endorsement I know. As for Palin, well lets see…she was Governor of Alaska, ran for Vice-President of the US”

        I’m too dumb for this blog, too dumb for this blog
        So dumb it hurts–“Right Said Fred”

        With apologies to the real Right Said Fred.

        • The attack on Obama is ad homonym as no specific actions, behaviors or characteristics of him are mentioned. The rest of what was said, I simply don’t understand.

        • David, Every one of your attacks are baseless but it’s not surprising you don’t understand that or much else.

  2. Re: My position on the 20th Street ferry landing. I am NOT opposed to this, but in listening to the EDC’s presentation, I realized that a lot of information was lacking. What was not made clear in the article is that Justine Johnson deflected a lot of excellent questions from the 45 (not 30) attendees by saying that the proposal would answer them. She and her colleague did not indicate that the EDC had made noise abatement a requirement of the proposal from any potential operator. When someone specifically noted that it’s possible to have directional horns, she had no response. That’s just one example. I reviewed the EDC’s materials about the ferry landing before the meeting, and I’ve also taken an interest in what’s being considered for the 23rd Street crosstown bus. I repeat: I never said I was against the ferry landing, but I did want to hear a plan for how people were going to be able to get to and from the ferry and how that would affect local transportation, among other things.

    • Take a look at the traffic backups along Avenue C, 20th St. and 23rd St between 2:30 and 3:30 when the fleet of Escalades and Benzes comes to pickup the UN School dismissal, and then think about the fleet of Uber’s and Taxi’s waiting to meet that incoming ferry every half hour or so.

      It seems to me that the ferry service offers little usefulness to area residents unless they happen to work in LIC, and it will devalue Stuyvesant Cove Park as a recreational space. Why isn’t the City using the 23rd Street Marina ? Don’t they own that ?

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