Volume 79, Number 4 | July 1 - 7, 2009
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Letters to the Editor

Glick sticks it to Trust, Leichter

To The Editor: 
Re “Leichter loses his vote, defends Pier 40 maneuver” (news article, June 24):

Like many community residents, I am concerned about the current condition of Pier 40 and believe that quick action needs to be taken to stop the pier’s further deterioration and the loss of additional parking revenues. While the best way to address this challenge is not clear, what is clear is that extending Pier 40’s lease term to 49 years and going through another lengthy R.F.P. process, particularly during this financial downturn, is not the answer to the pier’s immediate crisis. Unfortunately, the Hudson River Park Trust’s board has focused its attention on a lease extension that seems to be informed by a number of erroneous assumptions. 

First, I totally reject the notion that a lease extension is a small matter that can be supported after a few minutes of conversation during an H.R.P.T. board meeting. The requirement for a 30-year lease was a very carefully negotiated aspect of the Hudson River Park Act, and changing it would constitute a significant action, which by state law would require a public hearing. 

Second, while it is true that actions taken by the board do not require approval by the Hudson River Park Advisory Council, a significant action of this sort certainly requires advisory council input. The advisory council was written into the legislation so that community representatives could deliberate on issues and present their views to the Trust’s board for consideration before it takes action.

Third, while the community thankfully was an obstacle to the inappropriate development of Pier 40, the community has not caused the current problems at Pier 40, as Trust Chairperson Taylor and Senator Leichter unfortunately believe. Their view is reminiscent of the conversations that took place in crafting the Hudson River Park Act. During those early discussions, the senator was not happy about all of the hearings that were held and he was dismissive of the concerns expressed by local residents. I believe that, had it been up to the senator, many of the improvements in the legislation that occurred as a result of those hearings would not have been realized.

Instead of engaging in rushed conversations regarding the merits of a lease extension that will do nothing to solve Pier 40’s immediate challenges, I have chosen to spend my resources and energy in trying to identify other ways to address this pressing concern. The Trust board would be wise to follow my lead. 
Deborah J. Glick
Glick is assemblymember, 66th District

Don’t mess with moms

To The Editor:
Re “Gerson Rashomon” (Scoopy’s Notebook, June 17):
As a mom looking over the fence at 80, I have a few words for Alan Gerson: Had you waited, I’m sure your mom would have decked Gil Horowitz, who stopped by to whisper unpleasantries about you. I fully expect to be able to do the same should the provocation arise.
Renee Feinberg

Psych’s ego is in check

To The Editor:
Re “Shrink is a head case” (letter, by Sylvia Rackow, June 24):

In response to the letter by Sylvia Rackow, seemingly a supporter of Alan Gerson, regarding my cell-phone dust-up with Alan Gerson; several witnesses to the incident agree that Alan pushed and shoved me at the Downtown

Independent Democrats endorsement meeting, at which Alan lost to Pete Gleason. I agree that after Alan pushed and shoved me, I threw his cell phone at the wall.  

Whether psychologists in general seek attention, as Ms. Rackow seems to claim, or whether this psychologist does, is not the issue. The fact is that this psychologist, Dr. Gil Horowitz, did not report the above incident to Scoopy, as Ms. Rackow claims. However, Scoopy obtained the story. It did not come from me. 

I wish to thank The Villager for fair, objective reporting.
Gil Horowitz

Has bone to pick with atheist

To The Editor:
Re “Tree for Tom” (Scoopy’s Notebook, June 24):

As a resident of Perry St., I noted with interest Warren Allen Smith’s assertion in the Scoopy’s Notebook column that “the planting of a tree down by the courts to mark the 200th anniversary of Tom Paine’s death received no media coverage.”

In fact, our program, “Bill Moyers Journal,” videotaped the events down by the courts as well as ceremonies held the day before in New Rochelle, where Tom Paine’s farm was located, all of which were sponsored by the same group of Paine historians and enthusiasts.

While we did not show the actual tree planting, we did air a brief excerpt from a speech that was made at that event, as well as footage taped in New Rochelle. We followed these with an extensive discussion of Paine’s life and legacy with the historians Richard Brookhiser and Harvey Kaye. The segue that led out of the segment was the singing of the “Tom Paine’s Bones” song that Smith mentioned.
Michael Winship
Winship is senior writer, “Bill Moyers Journal”

A’Twitter over Iran videos

To The Editor:
Someone please notify the N.R.A. The old saying that “the pen is mightier than the sword” has just been updated to “the camera is more powerful than the gun.” It is now a fact that guns will not be the weapon of choice during future revolutions. Camera phones will be.

For instance, the revolution in Iran is not being fought at the point of a gun. In fact, guns have only made things worse for those using them. Every death, every gassing, every protest, every confrontation is recorded by cell-phone cameras and then witnessed by the world when the images are posted online.

Present and future fascists should take note that the quality of camera phones is getting better every day. There is just nowhere left for them to hide. Somewhere Frank Capra has to be smiling.
Lawrence White

Middle school mishegoss

To The Editor:
Re “A middle school at Sports Museum is not a big hit” (news article, June 24):

As the P.T.A. president for the Greenwich Village Middle School, I speak for many families who are distressed by the prospect — not yet confirmed by the Department of Education — of G.V.M.S. moving to 26 Broadway. That is not the neighborhood we signed up for when we decided to come to G.V.M.S.; it’s not even close. 

Further, the move does nothing to address the shameful lack of middle schools in the Village. We cannot help but wonder how it is possible that this is the best D.O.E. can do. And we think 75 Morton St. is perhaps more viable than we are being led to believe.

Sweeping G.V.M.S. under the rug, and out of the the district, only makes a middle school in our neighborhood a more distant reality. I would like to see our elected officials step up and put pressure on D.O.E. to do the right thing by our school.
Lisa Bernhard

No justice, no peace!

To The Editor:
Re “AIDS activist says fight’s ‘bigger than marriage’” (Gay Pride section article, June 24):

Charles King sums it up beautifully when he says, “What it’s really about is human dignity.” 

The idea that, as a justice of the peace in Washington, I was allowed to officiate at the marriages of non-gay couples when I wasn’t allowed to marry my spouse of 25 years was galling. 

Kudos to Connecticut, New England and Iowa for supporting marriage equality and fairness. Are you listening, Mr. Obama?
Joe Mustich

E-mail letters, not longer than 250 words in length, to news@thevillager.com or fax to 212-229-2790 or mail to The Villager, Letters to the Editor, 145 Sixth Ave., ground floor, NY, NY 10013. Please include phone number for confirmation purposes. The Villager reserves the right to edit letters for space, grammar, clarity and libel. The Villager does not publish anonymous letters.

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