The climate crisis continues
“We are grieving our grandkids – yours and mine.” This powerful message was written on a large poster carried by two grandmothers during a recent demonstration in Park Slope initiated by the environmental organization Extinction/Rebellion (www.rebellion.earth). This sentiment is expressed often by seniors and is totally justified. If we do not take action to drastically reduce global warming now the future for the next generations looks bleak. Why are we procrastinating?
Fortunately, not everyone is. Recently, there seems to be a recognition of the dangers at hand at the highest level of industry, finance, and government, some of them expressed at the World Economic Forum (WEF) at Davos, Switzerland. It behooves us to take note of the following:
The overwhelming climate crisis
Are you feeling overwhelmed by the climate change crisis? If so, you are not alone and have reasons to feel stressed. According to scientists, we are facing the sixth global extinction; but whereas the previous five extinctions happened over millions of years, this one is taking place within only 200 years and we are at the beginning of it. One psychological problem of the climate change crisis is the uncertainty of a fixed date of when it will hit you and your family catastrophically. This vagueness can lead in many to inaction and/or procrastination which in turn leads to more stress and feelings of hopelessness.
Are things hopeless? Not yet. If you live in Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village you are blessed to have witnessed over recent years management’s deep commitment to promoting “green” actions, for instance the installation of almost 10 000 solar panels for renewable energy, and many other energy saving steps (for this they received the 2018 Platinum LEED Award) . You can personally assist their efforts by faithfully recycling, composting, saving water and electricity in your apartment and by generally avoiding waste.
The city and state of New York are heavily engaged in energy saving projects such as reducing car traffic, and banning plastic bags to name just two. Globally, at the recent Economic Forum in Davos alarm bells regarding climate change were sounding, a new development.
Aggressive and persistent scammers
Tactics used by phone scammers are becoming ever more aggressive. On Friday, January 25 between the hours of 4:30 and 8:30 p.m., I received at least 20 calls telling me about “suspicious activities….” The caller(s) had the audacity to leave numerous messages with the following “toll free” number: 208-262-0000. I was compelled to turn off my voice mail, but the phone kept on ringing. In the meantime, I found out that a neighbor of mine received identical calls, which makes me wonder whether other tenants of PCV/ST have been targeted as well. Verizon was of no assistance. What can be done about this? How can we put a stop to this intrusion on our lives?
A plug for D’Agostino
Amidst the excitement over the new Trader Joe’s, I’d like to take this opportunity to remind ST-PCV residents that there’s a terrific and convenient D’Agostino at 355 First Ave., between East 20th and 21st Streets, where the old Gristedes used to be. The store has been completely renovated, and now sports clean, bright, wide aisles, a salad and readymade food bar and a pleasant seating area with chairs and tables, where a weary shopper can also comfortably perch while reviewing a shopping list.
Best of all are Larry the manager, and his always helpful, friendly, and kind staff (thank you, Jose, Theresa, Zenia, Rose, Brandon, and anyone whose name I may have misspelled or inadvertently omitted), who always give customers the kind of personal service so very rare and sadly lacking in the impersonal online or chain big box experience. Whether helping you locate the products you want, or checking you out and bagging or delivering your groceries, the staff always offers help with genuine warmth and smiles.
Three cheers for snow removal plan
I was extremely pleased to see the article on Manhattan Borough President Gail Brewer’s attention to the issue of snow removal (T&V, January 2). Those of us who live in ST/PCV can usually expect a coordinated and well-executed snow removal plan for the interiors and perimeters of the properties. But people have jobs, appointments, etc. that take them to neighborhoods all over the city regardless of the weather, and non-compliant property owners create a hazard for all of us.
Many property owners seem to have the attitude that if Mother Nature dropped the snow, let her take care of getting rid of it. Others rely on pedestrian foot traffic to create a path and still others, who opt to leave storefronts vacant, seem to think they have no obligation to remove snow from in front of a property that is not producing income.
Heat improvements in STPCV
I recently read a letter about the heat, or lack of heat, in PCVST.
Here’s my take. I’m a resident of the complex for 28 years. Over the years, I’ve had different devices that have told me the temperature in my apartment.
Up until there were sensors put in some apartments, the temperature in my apartment would hover around 80-83 degrees in the winter. That was with windows open.
I’m on the 10th of an 11-floor building, so I accepted that my apartment would be hotter than those below. But I always wondered, if my apartment was 80 degrees, was there really someone in my line on the first or second floor who was cold?
Charged for new door
Recently I had to call 911 for a medical emergency. NYPD also came with them and proceeded to breakdown down my door, even after my telling them I could answer the door. Stuyvesant Town then made me pay $1,700 for the new door. That was my tuition money for Baruch College for a year. I am trying to finish my degree, even though I am elderly and disabled now. I couldn’t believe I had to pay for the door. Technically I didn’t break it. And you know Stuyvesant Town charges you for any damage you cause in the apartment. I did not cause this damage. I should have never been charged for this. Can anybody help?
Rudy will rise again
Re: “The Fall of Rudy,” Opinion, Assemblymember Steven Sanders, T&V, Oct. 17
Thank you for the elucidating column on Rudy Guliani’s supposed fall from grace. I am confident, given his political skill, that he can recover and regroup. After all, look at what Al Sharpton was able to accomplish in the wake of the Tawana Brawley scam. Unfortunately for Rudy, he does not have political correctness on his side. Nevertheless, he will always be credited with the monumental task of having cleaned up the city after it had slipped into gross decrepitude from the previous administration.
Street co-naming inconsistencies
To the editor:
The Town and Village report on the rescinding of the proposed street co-naming for William Maxwell Evarts was seriously in error (“Controversy over anti-Mormon rhetoric nixes street co-naming,” T&V, October 10).
Community Board 6’s objections were twofold: (1) Evart’s defense of the anti-Reconstructionist President Andrew Johnson in his Impeachment trial, and (2) Evart’s central role in the theft of the presidential election of 1876. There was no consideration or even any mention of any Mormon Church controversy by CB6.
Robert Pigott’s article highlighted Evarts’ role defending Johnson, but omitted Johnson’s efforts to obstruct the then newly passed 13th Amendment. It also omitted Evarts’ central role in the Hayes-Tilden election.
Remembering Bernie’s son
To the editor:
I am delighted to know that Playground 3 is to be renamed for Bernie Rothenberg. As a resident of Stuyvesant Town, I have had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Rothenberg a few times. However, it is his son, Dr. Richard Rothenberg, whom I knew much better. This gives me an opportunity to describe my memory of Bernie’s son, Richard.
I taught music at Stuyvesant High School for 8 years (1983-1991) while Dr. Rothenberg was the Math Chairman (Assistant Principal for Math). When Richie heard that I had just moved to Stuyvesant Town in November 1986 with my wife Lisa (who was pregnant with our first son, Benjamin), he asked me what my new address was. “That’s right near my dad. I visit him for lunch every week. I’ll probably run into you a lot.”
Richie was an enormous influence on my growth as a teacher and supervisor. He knew that I had aspirations of becoming a chairman. When he noticed or heard from someone else something that I said or did that was not exemplary for an administrative leader, he would gently steer me in the right direction. When I was preparing for the NYC Board of Examiners Examination for Assistant Principal for Music, Dr. Rothenberg invited me to sit with him doing lesson observations of math teachers and then have discussions with me afterward as we analyzed the teacher’s performance.
TA: Stand up to Blackstone
Re: “Blackstone not required to provide polling places,” T&V, Sept. 26
“Name withheld” writes that Blackstone doesn’t have an obligation to provide polling sites. This is incorrect.
In 1946, a vibrant neighborhood with streets, schools and polling places was seized under eminent domain and turned over to Metropolitan Life, and became Stuyvesant Town.
In return, Met Life promised to maintain municipal streets, remove garbage, and provide places for citizens to vote. The Tenants Association needs to stand up to our property owner to ensure that Blackstone honors these obligations. Bring back the polling sites!
Blackstone not required to provide polling places
To the editor:
Although I am disappointed that some voters will have to cross 14th Street to vote, we must remember that Stuyvesant Town management is not at all obligated to provide space for voting. Voting is a right but one that a landlord is not required to facilitate. Should the government seek to compel management to provide the space, the Fifth Amendment would require that “just compensation be provided.”
City’s plan will hurt Stuy Cove
In response to the ad in the September 5 issue of T&V, the Stuyvesant Cove Park Association received a number of comments and questions. The following letter has been sent to elected representatives in Washington, Albany and New York. The SCPA thanks to all those who took the time to contact them.
On Monday, October 21, the Stuyvesant Cove Park Association will hold its annual Friends of Stuyvesant Cove Park meeting. The meeting will take place at the Stuyvesant Town Community Center, located at 449 East 16th Street. Among our agenda items is the planned razing of Stuyvesant Cove Park as part of the East Coast Resiliency Project.
It is the opinion of this body that the planned destruction and modification of the park, a project estimated to deprive the community use of the park for two years or more, will do nothing to prevent flooding in Stuyvesant Cove Park in the future. In addition, despite the surge in 2012, regular park-goers observed that within months, most of the flora was alive and well, with only a few exceptions, and within six months, you would not know anything had happened. All this in spite of the fact that the park had been under four feet of river water.
We understand that funds are being provided by the federal government. However, spending money simply because it is available should not be confused with justification and we are in total disagreement with the city’s decision to choose years of construction, hundreds of thousands of dollars in costs and no discernible new protections for the park itself. Moreover, Stuyvesant Cove Park’s natural resiliency in the wake of Hurricane Sandy proves that this is an ill-conceived over reaction to this event.
Frustrating ‘rush hour’ M23 service
I am a senior living on East 20th Street and Avenue C near the SBS bus stop. I arrived at the bus stop at 8:45 a.m. (well within “rush hour”). There was a bus outside with the front door open.
I showed the bus driver my MetroCard and said, “Just give me a second to get a slip.” I ran to the machine that was about 5 steps away from the bus. While I was inserting my MetroCard, the bus driver shut the door and drove away.
During this “rush hour,” I had to wait an additional 20 minutes for another bus. If this was the first time this or a similar incident happened, I would let it go. But this happens frequently. The bus parks away from the stop, pulls up when there’s a red light and takes off when the light changes.
Unfair demonization of Trump
Mr. Sanders is right that President Trump shouldn’t demonize refugees but Mr. Sanders shouldn’t demonize President Trump either. The policy of separation of children from their parents is a result of a ruling Judge Dolly Gee made during the Obama administration. According to that ruling, children could not be held in detention for more than 20 days. As a result, if Obama and now Trump didn’t release entire families within 20 days of being detained, they had to separate those families. It was Trump, not Obama, who issued an executive order to stop this. Trump’s executive order directed Attorney General Sessions to file a request with Judge Gee in the Central District of California to allow detained migrant families to be kept together. Trump also ordered that housing be found or built for these families and that priority be given to their cases. Where was the outrage of Sanders and his fellow Democratic leaders when Obama separated families? Why do they feign outrage at Trump when he is the president who acted to end child separation? Could it be in order to demonize Trump so they get elected?