2015-10-14 / Editorials

Letters to the Editor

Hispanic Heritage Month

Dear Friends,

As we observe National Hispanic Heritage Month, I would encourage all of you to learn about the crucial roles Hispanic Americans play in constructing our great nation. The history of the United States could never be written without their contributions.

To make the role of Hispanic-Americans in our nation even bigger, the time has come to focus on the education of our children. The key to breaking the chains of poverty is none other than education. Equal opportunity to a free and quality education is vital in the continuing building of our nation. That is why we, as representative officials, must focus our efforts on facilitating educational opportunities for all. It is unfortunate that some kids fail just because of the zip code they live in.

Some steps have been taken. And among the next ones we should take is passing, once and for all, the DREAM Act, the bill I introduced which would provide undocumented college students access to state financial aid. By passing the DREAM Act, our society will produce more educated men and women, thus improving our workforce, and the more educated our workforce is, the better is our economy.

Therefore, I strongly believe that passing the DREAM Act will not only give hope and opportunity to thousands of hard-working young New Yorkers, but also represents a sound investment in our state’s workforce and economic future that will eventually pay for itself many times over.

If you have any questions or need help, do not hesitate to stop by my office or to call us at 718- 205-3881.

Jose Peralta
State Senator, District 13

American Commonality

To The Editor:

In regard to immigration, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated as an exact equal to everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person’s becoming in every facet an American and nothing but an American. There can be no divided allegiance here.

Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn’t an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag. We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language, and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.

There are some who after reading the above will respond with indignation and label me an extremist. However those who know history will recognize they are not my words but sentiments expressed by President Theodore Roosevelt in a letter to the American Defense Society in 1919. This view and attitude was reflected in early immigration policies and contributed to the development of what we define as American exceptionalism.

Americans are being asked to reject American exceptionalism and to adapt to myriad cultures and traditions, to “globalize,” and become citizens of the world. We are being invaded by a variety of “citizens of the world” who exhibit lawlessness, resist assimilation and whose allegiances are suspect. Is this the transformation of America we were promised?

Freedom to be different, to pursue dreams, to create and prosper protected by the Constitution is by any criteria unique and the essence of American exceptionalism. It has created the highest standard of living on the planet. Nowhere is a government more restrained and individuals more free. Must we now abandon these principles and become “citizens of the world”?

Ed Konecnik

A Lucky Break

To The Editor:

Eva Moskowitz runs the largest and most publicized charter school network in New York City. Her Success Academy syndicate is among the “finest” the industry has to offer, according to those who disparage public education.

For years, Moskowitz has been enthusiastically touted as a mayoral prospect by those who share the hateful views against public education and unionized educators that she first cultivated many years ago in the City Council. Recently she made an announcement that convulsed the city with anticlimax and relief.

After having fueled speculation that she was going to unseat Mayor de Blasio and seizing every chance to fan the flames of gossip, she sighed that she would not contest Gracie Mansion after all.

To luxuriate in her grand tease in the days leading up to her surrender, she had strictly forbidden the escape of any details of her decision to New Yorkers and the media. Her humble declination, timed for optimal impact, came almost as soon as the hoof of the last of her 15,000 pro-charter school mercenaries marched across the Brooklyn Bridge.

Moskowitz is a visible presence on the political scene and her high profile has always been an irritant and often an insult. She has no credibility with professional educators, but she still gives them the jitters.

What happened to cancel her fantasy of leading the city? For many years she made clear her determination to take over City Hall and make it her own. She called it a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

Let’s hope she’s limited to a single lifetime.

“Imagine if I ran and I won. One of my first conversations would be with Mike Mulgrew. Imagine how that conversation would go,” she said.

Mulgrew is the United Federation of Teachers President who advocates, not just for his members, but for students and parents, and the system itself.

Is Moskowitz saying that she can’t see herself engaging in productive dialogue? Is she confessing that her own biases would be an insurmountable firewall to progress? Would she reject the public’s expressed confidence in our public schools? Would she recuse herself from negotiation and retreat from protecting a vital government service? Could she not overcome her own restrictive ideology, even for the sake of those who would have elected her?

What does this suggest about her fitness for high office? At the very least, that it would be doomed to stagnation!

It’s just as well that she has backed off from her threat to lead the city. The Queen of Private Charters, Eva Moskowitz, has for the first time in her brazen, self-promoting career, admitted that, at least this once, her personal interests converge with those of the general public.

Lucky break!

Ron Isaac
Fresh Meadows

Headed For A Fall

To The Editor:

Our country is really in deep trouble. The economy continues to be not very good, unemployment continues to affect millions of Americans, along with rising prices on everything from food to fuel to mortagage rates and student loans. Our foreign policy is a total disaster, and only continues to worsen. If our President had taken a much tougher stance with Bashar Assad of Syria four years ago, when civil war broke out in his country, we would not have this very precarious situation involving Russia flying bombing missions over that country, and also continuing to build up its own military strength. We need to immediately start strengthening our own military forces all over the globe, especially in Eastern and Central Europe, where the Russian Bear is baring its teeth and claws. The worldwide situation continues to deteriorate, and Barack Obama continues to twiddle his thumbs. He does not have a clue as to how to deal with foreign policy issues.

Congress is in a state of chaos due to problems electing a replacement for Speaker John Boehner. Our country is being laughed at by many other countries around the world who believe that America is headed for a fall – one that could collapse this economy and government, and plunge our nation into absolute chaos and anarchy. Whoever becomes our next President, God help him or her, because this nation will be in a state of utter chaos, economically and politically.

John Amato
Fresh Meadows

Salute To Hero Cop

To The Editor:

I would like to praise off-duty Transit cop Christopher Canale, who came upon a burning school bus and rescued two people in Manorville. As he said when interviewed, his first thought was that there could be children aboard the bus at 3:30 pm, Thursday October 8.

Christopher Canale jumped into action that day and did the brave thing to save others. He went above and beyond the call of duty, which is quite commendable, in order to save lives. He truly is a fine example of what our Finest are all about. Furthermore he has proven to be a great role model for all of us to follow. For when we see someone in trouble, if we can, we should act to help in some way. Now Commissioner Bill Bratton awarded him with the Challenge Coin given to cops for bravery and that is a very good thing to do. As a point of interest, Christopher Canale is assigned to Transit District 23 in Queens. Finally to Christopher Canale let me say this, I salute you, for you’ve done good!

Frederick R. Bedell Jr.
Glen Oaks Village

Preserving Life

To The Editor:

This week’s Gazette was full of very interesting and informative articles that affect the quality of our lives.

I am appalled that the Zadroga Act that would give medical care for those who were first responders and who suffered terrible cancers and lung diseases as a result of being at the Ground Zero site was not passed by Congress. It is shameful that we do not care for those heroes and veterans of the war on terrorism. The money will run out next year if nothing is done. We give to other nations, aid our soldiers and military forces, and we must help those who served our country here at home during the darkest day of our history, September 11.

I am appalled and saddened at the mass shooting at the community college in Oregon. There must be sensible gun ownership laws. Guns are put in the hands of deranged people and it is indeed a crime. Innocent lives are lost as a result. Life is important and must be preserved.

I AM glad that a law was passed to increase the prison sentence and make it a severe crime when there is unlawful and inappropriate touching or rubbing against a person on mass public transit. Sexual contact on mass transit is definitely a crime, a lack of respect and dignity indeed.

I agree that something must be done with the noise at LaGuardia Airport and it is dangerous, annoying, and can cause anxiety and hearing loss.

Mr. Bloom’s article about Safety on the Subways was an eye opener and very informative and educational. Nobody should walk in between cars while a train is moving. Suicides and accidents on trains really can be avoided.

There must be curb extensions on Newtown Avenue for safety purposes and glad that the city is doing something to construct them in that area. That is important in order to increase pedestrian safety which is important.

All batteries in carbon monoxide detecters must be checked because carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless and can kill immediately. In fact batteries in smoke detectors must be checked as well.I am glad that the Department of Sanitation will hire day laborers to shovel snow after a heavy snowfall. However, they should have background checks and have clean records.

There must not be changes in the zoning laws to make taller buildings and thus create less parking spaces in Astoria. That is appalling indeed.

Cynthia Groopman
Little Neck

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