2016-04-06 / Editorials

Letters to the Editor

Renovate 110th Pct.

Dear Friends,

Last week, I proposed, alongside Congressman Joseph Crowley, Assemblyman Francisco Moya and Community Board 4, a complete renovation of the dilapidated 110th Police Precinct building in Corona, a stationhouse that has not undergone a substantial reform since it opened in 1940. In efforts to modernize the precinct, we sent a letter to Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio asking them to support the project with funding. We have to ensure that the brave men and women who were sworn to protect us have the facilities they deserve.

In addition, we also proposed to build a precinct satellite station within Flushing Meadows Corona Park, especially in light of increasing crime and gang activity. Community Board 4, visitors and -have complained about this situation, so it is now time to seriously consider this option. Let’s not forget that the park is home to Citi Field, the Queens Museum, Queens Theater, the US Open, the New York Hall of Science and the Queens Zoo.

Please, sign up for my Senate webpage to let me know where you stand on legislation and follow the bills that matter to you. You will also be able to sign petitions. Follow this link www.nysenate.gov/senator/jose-peralta and click on the Message Senator icon to contact me.

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

Sincerely,
Jose Peralta
State Senator

Keep SHSAT

A copy of this letter was received at the Queens
Gazette.
March 27, 2016
Chancellor Carmen Fariña

New York City Department of Education
Tweed Courthouse 52 Chambers Street New York,
NY 10007

Dear Chancellor Fariña:

I am writing to you about the Specialized High Schools from a variety of perspectives.

I am a graduate of the Bronx High School of Science, the parent of a Science graduate, and a former teacher at Brooklyn Tech.

As a legislator, I am concerned about the fact that the student body does not reflect the makeup of our city. There is no question that the Latino, African- American, and low-income students are under-represented, but eliminating the SHSAT exam will not help.

Last year, the Research Alliance for New York City schools, an independent, respected affiliate of NYU issues a study which concluded that “admitting students on more varied measures would do little to address the lack of diversity in these schools, and could make the problem even worse.” A study by the New York City Comptroller and the Independent Budget Office came to a similar conclusion.

There are, I believe, a number of steps we can take. In my Senate District, there are many test prep schools which students attend after school and/or on weekends. Families pay large sums of money so their children have enriched experiences which often lead to admission to these high schools. The City should replicate the programs and provide them to all students free of charge. BOE should provide more gifted and talented programs in minority communities. The Discovery Program should be reinvigorated. Better outreach to families who are not aware such schools exist. Practice SHSAT should be given in schools and students should study the results to see where they need improvement.

The SHSAT is blind to race, ethnicity, income level, and community, unlike other recommendations to replace SHSAT.

I would like to work with you to resolve some of these issues.

Sincerely yours,
Toby Ann Stavisky
State Senate, 16th District

Ax Flushing West Plan

A copy of this letter was received at the Queens
Gazette.
March 29, 2016
Hon. Bill de Blasio
Mayor
City Hall
New York, NY 10007
Hon. Carl Weisbrod
Chairman, Department of City Planning
120 Broadway, 31st Floor
New York, NY 10271

Dear Mayor de Blasio and Chairman Weisbrod:

We are writing to you regarding the rezoning proposal for Flushing West and request that the plans be immediately withdrawn.

The proposed rezoning, adding additional density, is based on the proximity of the 7 subway line. We previously voiced our concerns about the ability of the 7 line to handle any increased ridership that Flushing West development would incur.

Now our concerns have been verified by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).

Senator Avella wrote to the MTA on January 28 inquiring about the rampant service disruptions on the 7 line and questioning whether the line is over capacity.

The MTA just responded indicating that “We operate the Flushing line at over 96% capacity during weekday rush hours...” With such high ridership on this line already, how does the City expect to accommodate a drastic increase in ridership should Flushing West continue to move forward as planned?

Surely, anyone who has recently ridden the 7 line knows how crowded and dangerous the platforms can be during rush hours. Adding more riders to a line that is already operating over 96% capacity is a recipe for disaster.

Given this information, we ask that the zoning plans for Flushing West be immediately withdrawn until a safer, better mass transit option can be presented to the public.

Sincerely,
Tony Avella, Senator, 11th District
Ron Kim, Assemblyman, 40th District

Underlying Principles

To The Editor:

The “establishment hierarchies” of the Republican and Democratic parties are not the adversaries they would like us to think they are. They are partners in a symbiotic oligarchic relationship based on an egalitarian ideology, “social justice,” redistribution of wealth, and a world where the equality of outcomes supersedes equality of opportunity. The candidates articulate superficial differences in sound bites and slogans never addressing the basic issue in the world today: the conflict between two opposite social principles, individualism and collectivism. It is not surprising the voters are looking for an “outsider.”

Individualism answers: the power of society is limited by the inalienable, individual rights of man. Example: Under a system of individualism, neither a mob nor a million men can pass a law to enslave or kill one man for their own benefit.

Collectivism answers: the power of society is unlimited. Society may make any laws it wishes, and force them upon anyone in any manner it wishes. Under a system of collectivism, a million men or a mob can pass a law to enslave or kill one man (or any minority), whenever they think they would benefit by his death. His right to live is not recognized. Does a mob named ISIS come to mind?

Before I vote, I would like to know towards which social principle a candidate is inclined. I would like each candidate to respond to the following: I propose you keep all that you earn and I keep all that I earn. If you disagree, how much of what I earn belongs to you and why?

Ed Konecnik
Flushing

Trump Wrecking Ball

To The Editor:

Trump could win the Republican nomination, but lose to Clinton in the general election. He might severely damage the Republican Party, and adversely impact Republicans in Congressional and state races. His un-American campaign of political violence and hooliganism is reminiscent of 20th century Nazi and Communist dictators.

In the Republican primaries Trump is averaging 35% of the vote. If Trump was up against one other candidate, polls show he might get another 10% of the vote.

History reveals primary candidates receiving less than 50% of the vote will lose the election for President.

The U.S. electorate comprises 26% Republicans, 30% Democrats, and 44% Independents. Polls show Trump garnering 70% of the Republican vote, or 18% (30% voting other) of the total; 5% of the Democratic vote, or 1.5% of the total; and 40% of the Independent vote, or 18% of the total, giving him 37.5% of the total vote. Clinton will receive few Republican votes; 95% of the Democratic vote, or 28.5%; and 60% of the Independent vote, or 26%. This gives Clinton 54.5% of the total vote, Trump 37.5%, and the remaining 8% are write-ins or blank ballots.

It is a Trump Wrecking Ball. The integrity of the Republican Party and the dignity of the Presidency is at stake.

Donald Moskowitz
Former AG2 and LT, U.S. Navy
Londonderry, NH

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