Lesson To Live By
Can I use the "Letters to the Editor" for a quick safety lesson?
On Monday, May 17, 2004, roughly 9:15 to 9:30 PM, I was heading westbound on Beach Channel Drive, near Beach 54 Street, doing 25 in the posted 30 MPH zone, due to the heavy fog at that hour. I had the green light.
Two persons, crossing against the red light, saw me, but, instead of retreating to the safety of the curb they had just stepped off from, the male took one pace back, grabbed the younger female by the hand, and ran for the far curb.
I am very happy that I had the anti lock brakes, as the truck stopped less than a yard from these two people. They then glared at me as if I were the one at fault.
Also, what were these people thinking, doing that, as my truck was an AMBULANCE, with both the Emergency Lights and Siren on, while responding to a call?
Are they not teaching safety in the schools? I believe they are, but these two must have missed the class.
Antiquated as the lines may be, "Cross at the green, not in between" still makes sense, as, in a contest between a person's legs, and the tonnage of any moving vehicle, the leg will, inevitably, be the loser should they collide.
RICHARD C. BERGER
Boardwalk Needs A Fixing!
I am the leader of a walking group for the Hammels Senior Center. We walk on the boardwalk on Wednesdays at 11 a.m. It is, however, not a safe place as I have tripped on a loose plank and injured myself. We would be grateful if cars on the boardwalk would slow down and the planks would get fixed.
I am writing to comment on articles and prices on our local pharmacies. I would like to dispute findings you found on Belle Harbor Chemists on Beach 129 Street owned by Richie Longo and Frank Stella.
I have a chronic condition and take several medications daily. I have been going to Belle Harbor Chemists for years and recently my union has forced us to send our long-term prescriptions to CFI Factory, in order for the union to save money. Well, I get printouts from my union three times a year with prescription information and the how much the medications cost. This big "warehouse" where I now have to send my prescriptions charge the union more money for the medications than Belle Harbor Chemists charged my union. This seems strange that a big warehouse would be more money than a small pharmacy.
There have been many times that daily medications I needed to take were on backorder, forcing me to have to pay for some pills to hold me over. In such cases, Frankie has helped me out and charged me a very fair price for the pills I must pay cash for.
Another reason I feel comfortable bringing my prescriptions to Belle Harbor Chemists is that they always have my medications and the few times they didn't have the whole amount in stock, they had it for me by the next afternoon. One time I had a prescription to fill later at night, and I went to one of our chain drugstores. Not only did they not have the drugs, but they told me that it would take five days for a painkiller. I brought the prescription to Frankie and by the next morning, it was filled in fifteen minutes.
Since I take many medications, I am very knowledgeable about my prescriptions. I can tell you about the pricing by my own research. Belle Harbor Chemists is convenient and prices medications fairly. We should support the smaller businesses in our community.
School Bus On Street
(The following letter was sent to local elected officials.)
My family and I moved to Rockaway Park almost three years ago after selling our home in the Bensonhurst area of Brooklyn. We came to enjoy the quality of life that Rockaway offered - but that is changing. Recently, the Acme Bus Lines a.k.a. Alert Coach Lines of Ronkonkama, L.I., has allowed one of their employees to take a commercial school bus home. It wouldn't be bad if there was a driveway and the bus was hidden, but it's not. It is parked in a space just off the main sidewalk and is hideous to look at. It blocks our views of the street and oncoming traffic causing us to lose sight of our children while they play. Not to mention that I've spent good money to upgrade the appearance of our front garden only to have their driver who has an inability to park the vehicle without hitting the decorative block which is slowly causing damages and an unnecessary expense to me.
A number of neighbors have approached me and stated to me their unhappiness with the situation and along with myself have contacted the bus company only to basically be told that they don't care. We would appreciate your assistance and advice on how was can resolve this.
Reading through the Wave's letters section has recently become an exercise in liberal indoctrination it seems. I must laugh to myself as the usual suspects chime in with their predictable anti-American fervor.
Never offering any solutions, mind you, but plenty of good old fashioned defeatism.
Laughter quickly turns to amazement however as it soon becomes apparent how completely duped and mired these individuals are in their self-aggrandizement and lowly vanity. These individuals are quick to seek the moral high ground in their condemnation of war and waste, as if Americans cannot discern between the idea of a war for the security of our country and a cynical attempt at American "imperialism". No, for these gullible individuals like Jesse Plutzer and Norman Silverman and Stephen Wohl the pages of the Wave are just another venue to act out their personal demons of self-loathing and unfortunately for the rest of us a glimpse into the harsh reality of where we are headed as a nation. For these would be guardians of the ideals of America, it never becomes evident how effectively they are being played by our enemies in a time of war. A recent interview with a retired North Vietnamese general bears this point out only too well. In the interview, the General states how the Communist leaders of the time kept a close watch on the effectiveness of the anti-war movement in the United States. In fact they counted on the division which had arisen in our nation for their victory. The Tet Offensive which was actually an American victory was therefore painted in a negative light by the increasingly contrary American media. The general has no doubt that the Communists persevered with the assistance of the opposition in the US. The ensuing years saw the deaths of millions of Cambodians and South Vietnamese at the hands of the communists. Right or wrong, the point is apparent. Even thirty years ago, before CNN, direct satellite feeds and the internet, our enemies understood that America, by virtue of it's open society, is uniquely vulnerable to division by manipulation of its media. Today, perception is everything in a war with the United States. This is chapter one of the subversive's handbook as it is the only way to circumvent the overwhelming force of our military. The Islamic Radical playbook should now include chapters on Somalia and Madrid under the heading: How to win the Left and influence national politics.
Fast forward to 2004 and we see the same game being played out for our nation's hearts and minds, only this time Americans are also under fire from an overtly poisonous political climate. Images are constant in a 24 hour news cycle and which images make the top of the news are increasingly subject to editorial whims and politics. Witness the perpetually negative spin on the Iraqi effort since day one by the New York Times and the Washington Post. Witness the practically obsessive fixation of the three major network news outlets on pictures of nude Iraqis at Abu Gharaib prison (not murdered, mutilated or burned Iraqis mind you, only naked) in contrast to the one day coverage of the heinous murder of American Nick Berg. And where is the media on the enormous Oil for Food/UN/France scandal. Oh la la, 60 minutes is nowhere to be found on that one. Face it, the Left holds no branch of government today yet they dominate the major media sources and are intent on using that domination to subvert President Bush's efforts in the War on Terrorism. Vanity rears it's ugly head again in the form of false accolades by the left leaning European Anti-Bush camp. Their name should be Legion for their numbers are many. And the Nobel Peace Prize goes to Ex-President Jimmy Carter for his efforts to denounce the current President, job well done. Insert applause here. Oh and don't forget Clinton, he was quick to jump on that band wagon in an unprecedented breach of protocol, not to mention poor taste, where two ex-Presidents teamed up to bad mouth the current administration. Another example, our bloated bloviator Michael Moore, the current poster boy for the Liberal agenda, wins the grand prize at the Cannes Film festival in France for his anti-bush documentary. Gee, I wonder if the French judges had an ulterior motive for that nod. Maybe subverting Bush will throw the spotlight away from that little UN/Oil fiasco and their duplicity in their dealings with America.
Back to the Rockaways and our own nabobs of negativity; Plutzer, Silverman and Wohl. Falling right into the plan like those brain eating, single minded, zombies in that great horror film, Night of the Living Dead. No time for national unity when there are conservatives to munch on. No thought that Afghanistan is now a democratic state with women's rights, no thought that Libya is now giving up nuclear ambitions, no thought to how Iraq no longer has a ruthless dictator with an Anti-American agenda, no thought to how much success we have had under this President in the War on Terrorism which is still only measured in months. Oh and those pesky WMD's which Clinton and Kerry both stated were there, then the major media said they weren't, then the Sarin gas shows up recently in roadside bomb in Iraq, then no further mention of the story in the NYTimes, where will it all end. By the way, Iraq is being handed over next month. And whatever happened to the economic meltdown that the left so vigorously predicted last year? I guess reality had other plans. And look up at the sky, still blue and not falling to the ground. Go figure.
Peninsula Hospital Service
Just recently, my wife and I, Lillian and Harry Burgeman, were patients in Peninsula Hospital, and were there for almost a week. The treatment we were given from the day we arrived to the day we left was overwhelming. And the compassion and professionalism of everyone from Bob Levine, nurses, and staff - including the cleaning personnel - was most satisfactory.
We were patients in the same room and when people saw us for the first time they were shocked and I told them she was my girlfriend! They soon found out she was my wife of 66 years!
The Rockaways are very fortunate to have Peninsula Hospital in their midst.
Enough Is Enough!
I read Betsy Kuhlmann's letter, "Not The Answer For 116 Street," and totally agree that the Chamber of Commerce needs to attract stores to meet the needs of the Rockaway community. Another $.99 store isn't the answer. We need to reach out to Kohl's, Target, Barnes & Nobles, The Gap, etc. so that our own residents won't have to go to Howard Beach or Nassau County to shop. With our increased population on the West End, we need to be serviced by name recognized stores and not have to pass 116 Street with merchandise all over the sidewalks.
As a community activist, I will continue to help improve the quality of life for the Rockaway residents. In April, I purposely went to Key Food on Earth Day to encourage manager, Jerry Nierenberg, to remove graffiti from the exterior of the store. I returned in May to remind Jerry to keep his word. Hopefully, Jerry will reach out to the 100 Precinct Explorers to work with him to get rid of the ugly scribblings on Key Food's exterior.
Recently, I have spoken to disgusted straphangers about the deplorable transit conditions in Rockaway. The Beach 105 Station's railing is so rusted that you can't even hold it as you enter the station. Pigeon droppings are all over the steps and station. Many young adults have left Rockaway because of the miserable train service and now live in other boroughs where there are clean stations and efficient train service. I visited the 105 Street Seaside Station and copied the name of the Superintendent - Brian Kaufman (718) 243-3222 and called to complain. I urge our legislators, home resident associations to either call or write to:
NYC Transit Division
Stations Rooms and Services
370 Jay Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Rockaway is still being treated as a stepchild of New York City. For two years I have been requesting low pines to be planted in the flowerbeds on Shore Front Parkway. Councilman Joe Addabbo is helping in the pursuit to beautify Rockaway.
We need to be united as a strong community to demand the services that other city neighborhoods are already receiving. Get involved. Write that letter. Make the telephone call. Hopefully, it will make a difference.
Come And Visit
It is hard for some of us who live on the eastern end of the peninsula to understand the problems with tickets on the beach. The 101 Precinct has provided us with none of the problems that the people who live in the 100 Precinct obviously face.
People fish off the rocks and surf here with relatively little hassle. While there are police on the beach and the boardwalk, they seldom bother anybody unless there is a real criminal problem. That is the way it should be.
We do have some problems with the Park Department Police, but they are so few and far between that they hardly make a ripple. I would invite those who live on the west end of the peninsula and really want to enjoy the beach to come and visit us on the east end one day. You will find that you like it.