Letters to the editor, July 25

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Nike’s flag sneakers disrespectful

Re: “It Seems to Me,” T&V, July 11

While Christopher Hagedorn’s belief that the Betsy Ross flag sneakers were “cool” might be true and while Colin Kaepernick’s reasoning against the Betsy Ross flag sneakers I believe to be faulty at best; both sides of that argument missed a far more serious and important point.

If the Betsy Ross flag sneakers had been sold to the public, what would have happened to those sneakers when they wore out?  From my point of view, throwing those sneakers in the garbage would have been little different then from throwing any other American Flag in the garbage.  Total disrespect!

The proper retirement of the American Flag requires a ceremony at which old and worn our flags are burned.  The ceremony appropriately concludes with the call of the bugle: To The Colors.

I am glad our flag has been spared the mass disrespect the sale of the Betsy Ross flag sneakers would have later created.

Jerry Alperstein
Stuyvesant Town

What’s a picture really worth?

The photo discussed in the piece by Sanders (AP Photo/Julia Le Duc)

To the editor:

It is difficult to answer Steven Sanders’ question, “What’s the picture worth?” (T&V, July 4). (The picture shows the body of Oscar Alberto Martines Ramirez and his daughter, Valeria, floating face down in the reeds on the shore of the Rio Grande.) I understand Mr. Sanders’ disgust, but I do not understand what it is he would have us do. Do we say (that) the picture says: ‘Let them in!!!” or do we say that the picture addresses those who would leave Central America: ‘No vaya a Los Estados Unidos porque el viaje es muy peligroso!’ Or perhaps, just perhaps, do we commit to something like “Iraqi Freedom”—invade a few Central American countries, and clean them up, so that those who left might return?

Mr. Sanders seems to think that our choice for today was made years ago, and he has Emma Lazarus’, The New Colossus, and our Declaration of Independence to prove it—though I don’t see the Declaration being exactly helpful to those who have left their homeland. But if Mr. Sanders is going to rely on what “made America exceptional,” then I think that he and we will need to be more specific about the past tense and history. We need to get beyond his answer, “It is the place to where the poor were free to immigrate.” We will need to ask the further question: what made this the place to where “the tired and the poor, the huddled masses, [and] the wretched refuse” might immigrate? We owe that clarity to ourselves and to those who (now) risk their lives.

If we fail to do that, then we will have turned our values into ahistorical self-propelled clichés.

John M Giannone
Stuyvesant Town

Don’t ‘experiment’ with 14th Street

Dear Editor,

The Town & Village news articles over the last two weeks, in total support of a proposed DOT busway for 14th Street, offer no data on alternative plans. I support continuing to allow cars on 14th Street, and not allowing DOT to “experiment” on our small side streets, which will result in increased pollution, traffic jams and decreased safe access for elderly, strollers and disabled.

I support reinstating bus stops and allowing left/right turns off of 14th Street, since there is to be no full shutdown of the L train. We now have SBS bus service on 14th Street. Please note that other streets have this same service and all those scenarios allow cars.

During the preliminary part of this “experiment,” which I fear is being foisted on us as final, many large apartment buildings have lost their loading areas and vital accessibility. No one can explain how move-ins, move-outs and deliveries can still occur. It seems erratic and too hasty. None of this is a rich/poor issue. It’s practical because it affects anyone and everyone: drivers, pedestrians, bikers, shoppers, owners children and the elderly, who use these 14th street environs each day. Our attorney who filed our case understands this, and even he is representing us pro bono.

The current “experiment” reads as if it were drawn by newly-minted PHDs who do not live here. It strikes us as out of touch. We deserve better.

Stern, supportive enforcement is needed on ubiquitous bikers so they might better observe and follow local traffic laws. Throughout all the years of walking my dog, strolling, shopping, commuting, I have always felt the head-spinning risks of speeding bikers on sidewalks and in crosswalks, running traffic lights perilously close to me at every turn. I urge a moratorium on any additional bike lanes until a comprehensive review, backed by current political will, is conducted. I understand that the bike lanes double as important access for emergency vehicles, but which lanes are “common sense routes,” and which ones might actually be expendable? More research and consideration, please. Thank you.

Gail Fox
West 15th Street

16 thoughts on “Letters to the editor, July 25

  1. Note that the community boards in the area filled with college-educated people who DO live here, AND the council members, supported all of the changes to 14th Street that DOT/MTA proposed.

    Gail is free to say she doesn’t like it herself & to explain why, but the public should not tolerate these mendacious statements trying to spread inaccurate impressions about the community institutions who advocated for the plan. She is not the only member of the community who counts.

        • Actually, it’s right on point. No one issues more mendacious statements trying to spread inaccurate impressions than you and the public should not tolerate them.

        • Hey there Mr Garodnick *****!, tell us what the council members and the community boards (2,3,4,5,6) had to say about the 14th Street plans. Tell the truth.

        • The truth is I don’t give a rat’s ass about what the community boards, which are nothing but a bunch of corrupt idiots or the City Council who are dumber than rocks has to say about ANYTHING, no less the 14th street plans. Both are the main reason that only San Francisco bleeds more residents annually than NYC. I am just calling you out for your hypocrisy.

        • No, you are not just “calling out” what I am saying. You are calling me a liar and your facts are dead wrong and you have nothing to back up that assertion. Adults are expected to speak more properly than this in an adult conversation.

        • No, I really am just calling you out for your hypocrisy but since you brought it up you do frequently lie in your diatribes and I have called you out for that too. So, I will agree with you on that. You are a hypocrite and a liar.

  2. Community Boards are filled with politically-connected people (like Brian, & Susan from the fake TA) with no real interest in others’ numerous daily problems with bikes…or anything else. And a “college education” today is not what it used to be.
    For Brian’s information, I’m a FORMER bicyclist who does not own or use a car.
    But since he is obviously so brilliant, and always has all the answers, why doesn’t he add his name to those running for President (if qualified age-wise)? Don’t think we have enough potential candidates just yet, and the Tilden Clubhouse–which brought us Garodnick and Powers–would certainly back him to the hilt.

  3. My comment is rather tame. I’m merely saying that I agree with Gail Fox in that plans are very often imposed upon communities before input is requested or even thought of.

  4. Brian Van you have it all wrong and Gail Fox speaks the truth and expresses the sentiment of the vast majority of residents and business owners in the community who spoke out against these plans first with the L Train being the justification and now with Trottenberg’s bait and switch to do what she said she preferred all along. I would not hold out the spineless electeds or the members of Community Boards as speaking for the people who have spoken for themselves countless times with very loud voices that they do not want to be guinea pigs to the Mayor’s “Bold New Experiment.” Community Boards stocked with Transportation Alternatives leadership and sycophants or electeds bullied by the rude and nasty bike lobbyists are a paltry few voices when compared to the residents and businesses affected by this ill advised plans and who have objected to it at every juncture. To favor this vocal minority over the commuting public at large is a gross violation of democratic process. Shame on you all.

    • It’s absolutely incredible that you would point at 50 civic volunteers, of whom only about 7 of them are donors to TransAlt (with no one actually working for them in any capacity), and you would say they should feel shame for the work that they do. How disrespectful, ungrateful and dishonest of you to say that.

      Meanwhile nobody can name any major impacts at all. There are just a few people who are fighting to get the last overnight free parking spaces in the area. The street is not your dedicated space to park your personal car.

  5. I totally agree with letter. The negative impact that the city has caused that has deeply affected 14th, 13th and 12th Streets are immeasurable.

  6. Pingback: Letters to the editor, Aug. 22 | Town & Village

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