2009-06-03 / Editorials

Letters to the Editor

Thanks Quinn For Trip

To The Editor:

Another Memorial Day gone by. While some of us watched parades, and some went shopping [and] others had barbeques, the wonderful people at Quinn's Funeral Home in Astoria were busy arranging a bus ride and lunch for those of us who have loved ones interred at Calverton Cemetery.

I'm sure I speak for all of us who take advantage of your generosity year after year: we thank you with all our hearts and trust that we will travel with you again next year. Sincere thanks, Mrs. Eve Forbes Astoria Civic Assns. Are Assets To The Editor:

The Auburndale Improvement Association, Inc., is a civic association in its 104th year, that works to make the neighborhoods of Auburndale and Western Bayside great places to live for all of its residents. I am proud to be the first vice president and zoning and housing chair of this organization.

Under the leadership of our president, Terri Pouymari, and our executive board, we find that there are many issues to deal with in our community. We represent over 600 families in our area and as volunteers, we work every day toward improving our community.

We are fortunate to belong to and work with the Queens Civic Congress, an umbrella organization that represents over 100 civic associations throughout Queens County. Civic associations are the spark plugs that work for positive goals and accomplishments to make our neighborhoods desirable and livable.

Currently, our organization is pressing to have Southern Auburndale contextually rezoned in order to curb overdevelopment and inappropriate development. With strong support from Councilmember Tony Avella and [state] Senator Frank Padavan and other elected leaders and Community Boards 7 and 11, we hope that this rezoning plan will be announced and enacted some time this year. Community residents have fought for many years to achieve this goal. We will be grouped with the neighborhoods of Oakland Gardens, Hollis Hills and parts of Kissena Park, Flushing under this plan.

Another issue that causes great concern is the issue of community facilities and their impact on residential areas. One example, a day care center is planned for a small corner lot at Francis Lewis Boulevard and 42nd Avenue. Only two on-site parking spaces for a facility that will service at least 175 children daily. No place to safely discharge and pick up these 2-through 6-year olds. Limited parking around the site due to the presence of an elementary school across the street. There will be a windowless subcellar which will contain a gym for 35 little ones, according to on-line plans. New regulations prohibit children in a subcellar, from what we have been told. Our organization will monitor this concern. These are just a few of the issues facing the community and our organization with this facility.

By the way, the elementary school across the street from the new day care center is P.S. 130. Local children are not zoned to attend this school. They have to be bussed elsewhere. Other children are bussed in to attend this school. Another issue needing resolution.

And here is another issue. We are currently supporting our colleagues of the Station Road Civic Association in their efforts to have the jersey concrete barrier replaced at the gate of Helms Brothers Auto Service Dealership at the intersection of Auburndale Lane and Station Road. The barrier was removed, despite an agreement to keep this particular gate closed due to concerns for the safety of residents. Trucks and other vehicles now enter and exit through this gate daily through narrow streets, many lacking any concern for the safety and well-being of people living in the area. This is unacceptable and the New York City Department of Transportation will not listen to reason, despite intense community opposition.

These are just a few of the problems facing the Auburndale community. Similar problems are repeated throughout our city. I urge everyone to join their local civic association and work together with your neighbors to ensure that your communities are respected and beautiful so that everyone can enjoy a better quality of life.

Henry Euler Bayside

Violated Constitution

To The Editor:

In 1787, while the rest of the world was governed by the whims of kings and tyrants, our Founding Fathers created the Constitution to circumscribe arbitrary governmental powers, establish clear rules and protect our inalienable individual rights. Incrementally and almost imperceptibly, however, we are losing our rights as governmental power and control grows and rules are ignored for the "greater good". The Constitution of the United States of America is not a document that limits the rights of man, but a document that limits the power of government over man. Either the power of government is limited, or it is not. It can't be both.

The Obama Administration abandoned the rule of law in the Chrysler bankruptcy proceedings by violating Article I, Section 10 of the Constitution, prohibiting the state from interfering with the obligation to pay debts. Secured creditors entitled to first priority payment under the "absolute priority rule" were "cajoled", some say "strong armed", into accepting 30 cents on the dollar while the [United] Auto Workers Union, holding junior creditor claims, got about 50 cents on the dollar. Has the government fleeced pension funds and private investors to pay off powerful political interests? Is our economic system at risk since investors and entrepreneurs are no longer protected by the rule of law and face the potential of government confiscation?

The government cannot say we have inalienable rights except in an "emergency", in cold weather, on every second Thursday, or that they may be violated for a good purpose. No man has the right to abrogate the rule of law and the Constitution, not at any time, not for any purpose whatsoever. Any violation of this rule, however well intentioned, places you at the mercy of the whims of would-be kings and tyrants, aka "politicians".

If you think this position is too rigid, uncompromising, too "black and white", check your premise. You can't have it both ways.

Ed Konecnik Flushing

Hails Sotomayor

To The Editor:

President [Barack] Obama has given a great deal of thought [to] his nomination to the Supreme Court of its first woman Latin[a], Sonia Sotomayor. I applaud Federal Judge Sonia Sotomayor, who has come from humble beginnings and who struggle[d] and worked hard to get where she is now, which I find quite commendable. [What] I also find great is that she is a New Yorker. Now that being said, I feel she will have a great deal of concern for the common men and women of our nation and their need for equal justice. I do hope, however, as Supreme Court Justice she follows and upholds the intent of the Constitution and makes those decisions for the good of all America. Remember the first three words of the Constitution, "We the People". That is what I hope Judge Sotomayor remembers when she takes her seat on the Supreme Court. Frederick R. Bedell Jr. Glen Oaks Village

Make Cars In U.S.

To The Editor:

General Motors (GM) received $20 billion in U.S. government loans and might need another $50 billion to survive.

GM plans to close a number of U.S. plants and lay off thousands of workers. The UAW has agreed to eliminate or reduce employee benefits to drop the average wage, including benefits, from around $75 per hour to near $45 per hour, which is the average wage of U.S. auto workers at foreign plants in the U.S. Hopefully, GM will cut management staff and reduce executive salaries. These actions should make GM cost-competitive and save thousands of American jobs.

However, to my astonishment, GM plans to increase imports from Mexico, South Korea, Japan and China from 15 percent in 2009 to 23 percent by 2014. Approximately 50,000 cars will be imported from Communist China by 2014.

Evidently the U.S. taxpayers are loaning GM $20-$50 billion to stay alive so it can close U.S. plants, lay off U.S. workers, transfer some production to foreign countries, like Communist China, and import inferior cars to the U.S. so more U.S. workers can be laid off. And our insurance rates and healthcare costs will increase from accidents as the wheels fall off the Chinese-made vehicles.

We don't need imported cars. We need fuel-efficient, reasonably priced cars manufactured in the U.S.

Donald A. Moskowitz Londonderry, New Hampshire

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