Opinion: The apprentice president

By former Assemblyman Steven Sanders

What can you say about a guy who breaks all the precedents, smashes conventions and blazes a totally new path? Well, you could say that person is an innovator and a risk taker. But in the presidency? And with a man with absolutely no government experience? Thus far, Donald Trump has refused to
hold any press conferences, release any of his tax returns, or be held accountable for his vast business entanglements.  And given his international business relationships, an understanding of where conflicts of interest exist is essential.

The President of the United States is supposed to be free from any external influence that might taint his decision making.

But Trump says NO to releasing information about his outside businesses or his taxes, something that no President has refused in 40 years. Trump further breaks with tradition by declaring that he will not disengage from his sprawling private real estate empire by divesting or placing them in some form of a blind trust. Instead he says that his closest family members can run them with no impact on his presidential decisions.

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Thank you – Over 250 toys donated to T&V drive

Gifts donated to Mount Sinai Beth Israel (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Gifts donated to Mount Sinai Beth Israel (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

Readers of Town & Village have once again made the holidays a little brighter for children stuck in hospital rooms as well as the families utilizing the outpatient clinics run by Mount Sinai Beth Israel by donating over 250 toys to this newspaper’s annual drive.

Gifts for kids of all ages were donated this year, from board games to books to stuffed animals to arts and crafts supplies to games sure to cheer any fan of Star Wars.

Town & Village’s partners on this longstanding community tradition are Blackstone/Stuy Town Property Services, the management of Waterside Plaza and M&T Bank on First Avenue and 23rd Street, who all provided convenient toy dropoff sites.

Bonnie Robbins, PhD, coordinator of children and family services at Mount Sinai Beth Israel, has said in recent years the hospital has faced some difficulty in getting enough toys to meet the needs of patients. This is due to the economy as well as other factors like drives for larger organizations competing for the support of individuals as well as toy retailers.

The hospital’s clinics are located throughout the city with three in the Kips Bay/Gramercy area, and for many patient families, parents often have to choose between clothes for their children or toys.

Fortunately, the turnout of this year’s drive, Robbins said, will be a big help.

“We are enormously proud and grateful to be a part of this supportive, generous community,” said Robbins. “Once again residents and businesses have opened their hearts to our children. This very successful toy drive helps us to provide a happy holiday to our kids and families, and it would not be possible without the support of our fabulous neighbors.”

The staff of Town & Village would also like to say thank you and happy holidays to our readers, SPS, Waterside and M&T Bank.