Letters to the Editor, Dec. 1

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Why I’m grateful this holiday season

I thought it would be appropriate, given the time of year, to express some gratitude and optimism during these discordant times. The Stuy Town/Peter Cooper community has been through a lot and now our country, too, is facing some tough times.

As I take inventory of areas for thanks, I choose to look locally and at our great and diverse community.  We have to be ever mindful that our ST/PCV community is actually a small and complex city, with unforeseen challenges.

I am grateful that we have finally achieved some real stability in Blackstone as our still-newish owner and for their important choice to have key staff living among us, sharing our quality of life.  I am grateful for management’s clear voice and steady hand thus far. Grateful for their choice to keep long-serving staff like Bill M. and Fred K., who keep us safe and to Kathleen K. and Tom F. who keep us warm and our homes and buildings functional. For Rick H. and the new members of his team who are making real efforts to care for our community.

I am grateful for a strong and wary tenants association, which is practical and pragmatic in its efforts to protect our rights and our quality of life. (And let’s not forget that it was the TA whose years-long work with top legal and financial advisers led to the Blackstone takeover.) Grateful, too, for its outstanding leaders and volunteers who deserve much but get too little recognition.

I am grateful we have our own outstanding hometown City Council member, Dan G. who, for more than ten years has tirelessly defended our community and whose accomplishments are too numerous to list in this letter.

I am grateful for this newspaper and its well-reported, well-written coverage of our own and surrounding communities and for those neighbor-citizens like Barbara Z. who write tough letters to it and have the courage to stand behind their words and sign their names. Unsigned letters, like anonymous blogs and fake news posts are a great disservice to civil discourse. These are nameless voices that should go unheard.

I am still grateful for my two very good friends (a married couple, I’ll say no more) who despite my urgent pleas, voted for the controversial winner of the presidential race. That we can still find common ground to unite on despite our stark differences. For when we stop listening to one another that is when the real trouble starts.

We must always learn by listening to our opponents and keeping an open mind. We must not demonize them for a different view, no matter how bitter. I am grateful to my mentors and teachers who taught me these things.

John Marsh, PCV

ST/PCV leads with composting program

I applaud Rick Hayduk and the entire management team of Stuyvesant Town for our new composting program. At a time when the new administration’s attitude towards environmental program is in question, Stuyvesant Town is taking a huge step forward to saving our planet.  I could not be more thrilled.

I wrote to and called out previous management in February, 2013.  When I requested that we begin composting they replied, “We are. The gardening department composts all the time.”

Needless to say we were speaking about two different things.

But I am hoping that once the composting begins, the final fertilizing product can be used to fertilize the grounds of PCVST, thereby saving lots of money for the community.

Susan Turchin,
Composting resident, ST

Why the Electoral College matters

Re: Steven Sanders’ Politics & Tidbits column “You can win for losing,” T&V, Nov. 24

To the Editor,

Thanks to Steven Sanders for his excellent explanation of the Electoral College, what its purpose is, and why it cannot be eliminated.
In the 2016 election, the Electoral College insulated the rest of the nation from the impact of the huge number of votes cast in the urban and coastal areas of California. For the 49 states, excluding California, Trump’s popular vote exceeded Clinton’s by 1.7 million votes. When California is included, Clinton’s popular vote exceeded Trump’s by 2.2 million votes. (Clinton had a 3.9 million advantage in California. Data are from Wikipedia.)

In our presidential elections, the prize is the Electoral College vote, not the popular vote. The strategies of the candidates are focused on winning the Electoral College vote, not the popular vote. If the prize was the popular vote, the candidates would use different strategies, and the popular vote would be different.

The numbers published for the popular vote are the numbers for the votes that were actually counted. The vote count does not always include all the votes that were cast. Votes cast that may not be counted include: absentee ballots, military ballots, and provisional ballots.

For example, if at the end of in-person voting, Party A is ahead of Party B all down the ballot by, say, at least 100,000 votes and there are a total of 95,000 absentee, military, and provisional votes still to count, those votes may not be counted. Those votes cannot affect the Electoral College vote.

But they could affect the popular vote.

Floyd Smith, PCV

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.