Greenpoint Bank Closing
The following letter was sent to the New York State Banking Department.
I know you are aware North Fork Bank recently purchased Greenpoint Bank and is making various business judgments. We are currently banking clients and live in or around the banking area.
We are told Greenpoint Bank will close its doors on April 1, 2005, coincidentally corresponds to April Fool’s Day. We think the joke is not funny because we are very dependent on this bank for services. I think it is appropriate that I elaborate for the management to consider. Myself included, like many others, have been handicapped for many years. Also the new area is almost a mile away and as such will be very difficult for many to get to the bank.
I know the bank makes decisions based on economics primarily. However, I believe this time a decision should also consider the impact this move will have on the residence of the area.
I therefore request a reconsideration of this decision to move the branch.
In closing, we have started a petition drive and we are contacting all relevant politicians and community leaders for their involvement.
FLOYD SMITH III
Call It What It Is
I don’t think there is an abbreviation for Hanukkah.
Please, there is no holiday named Xmas. Please refer to CHRISTMAS as CHRISTMAS.
A Joyous Season For All
Stephen S. Yaeger’s letter, “Not on Public Property”, he states that “We are opening a Pandora’s box” by displaying religious symbols on public property. Unfortunately, he is correct. Political correctness has indeed gone wild. Civil lawsuits are being filed for having the word “under God” in the pledge of allegiance. It’s absolutely ridiculous. I realize that the missing crèche on Beach 116 Street offended some neighborhood Christians. Personally, I think it’s great that the Chamber of Commerce sponsored a Christmas tree lighting on the West end with Carols, Santa and Treats on December 16. I also think it’s great and that the Rotary sponsored the Menorah Lighting on December 7 with chocolate, cookies and Chanukah Gelt. This is a great reflection of Rockaway’s diversity in what should be a joyous season for all.
However, when you allow some religions freedom of expression and not others that is when the controversy becomes justified. This holiday season my niece’s chorus group performed a concert at a local public school. They had some Chanukah, Kwanzaa and generic winter holiday songs. They did a great job and the diversity in the songs was quite enjoyable. However, Christmas songs were conspicuously absent from this concert. Such omissions are offensive and they motivate those offended to champion an end to any and all religious mentions on public property.
I do agree with Mr. Yaeger in an “all or nothing” sense. If we are going to include some community religions and not others in schools, public displays, etc., then there should no references at all. However, I think our founding fathers were concerned with religious freedom of expression, fairness in legislation and an impartial judicial system when they were crafting language in our Declaration of Independence. I don’t think a menorah in a town square or songs at a school holiday concert were foremost on Jefferson or Franklin’s list of concerns.
I truly hope that next year, we continue to see the Christmas tree, the Chanukah menorah, and the crèche on Beach 116 Street. All of these symbols represent a majority of Rockaway’s West end’s community celebrations each December. What a shame that our society, and more so our community, is becoming a product of unnecessary, over-the-top political correctness.
MATTHEW E. MCLEAN
Christmas Eve Dinner
Thank you to all that helped the Crystal Lee Collins Foundation for Youth Development, The New York Venom Semi-Pro Football Team, and the Chocolate Gentlemen’s Entertainment Christmas Eve Dinner have a wonderful evening.
Special thanks to: Joyce Lucas, Melinda Kirk, Peggy Thomas, C-Town, Zedi Collins, Maggie Miller, DeShawn Mason and family, The Madison Boys and Girls Club, Sue Hill, Yvonne Armstead, Myra Howell and the Riley Family.
No Cigar This Time
This letter is addressed to Stephen Yaegar’s letter in a recent issue of The Wave.
I will answer several issues he raise in his letter in the order in which they appeared there.
Question: “Why is it necessary that we must display our religious symbols on public property?”
Answer: Americans have trouble “remembering” the sobering details of 9-11 so as to keep us reminded of the “evil” we face now in the 21st Century. Remembering will keep us vigilant and strong and less susceptible in the future. The public property is just that open to all the public. The founding fathers (check G. Washington’s and others proclamations and those of Congress concerning days of fasting and prayer) were a religious bunch and recognized that it was God not man that gave us our unalienable rights!
Time has a way of helping us forget; as generation after generation passes and time whittles away at the memory of our traditions and reason for action and makes those memories less apparent to the people the furthest from the event by time!
What made this nation great was a firm belief in a creator God and his hand on us as individuals and as a nation! What better place to remind those Americans of the future, our children and their children, of this rich Godly heritage than the public square. The public square that illustrates the historical fact that God was much involved in the founding of our nation! Let all who celebrate God have access to the public square. It is their right!
Issue: inalienable vs. unalienable, our Creator vs. “their Creator” .
Answer: The American heritage Dictionary lists the following as its definition of these two words: inalienable- “Not capable of being transferred to another”; unalienable- “Not to be separated”. It is obvious why the good Mr. Franklin would have changed the word, its use was incorrect in its meaning on the face of it considering the context in which it was to be used. The same can be said of the words “our and their”. “Our Creator” would indicate that the belief of God given rights, was limited only to those writing the Declaration, only those in dispute with the Crown. That could not have been further from the truth. Benjamin Franklin and the others had a firm belief in the rights of all those believing in God having these same rights not just the Colonies. Therefore the words were changed to represent that view as well as fit the pronoun syntax that proceeded it, the pronoun, “they”. Those changes do not reflect your tortured idea that to use them would somehow take away religious rights or force a state religion on anyone by the soon to be formed government. Nice try, close, but no cigar Mr. Yaegar!
KENNETH W. GAREAU
Questions For Cashin
A year ago I came out very publicly in opposition of Dr. Cashin’s plans to change the schools in Far Rockaway. One of the many questions Dr. Cashin did not give a satisfactory answer for was, “what will be happen to the children left in MS 180 & 198 as you phase out the existing programs?”
Her answer was that “nothing will happen to those children”.
Here we are, a little over a year later and this answer could not be more true.
I look at the classroom sizes being less than 25 in many cases and ask myself “why are these children not doing better?”
The answer is not so simple and has many truly ugly answers. And I am sure we all know what they are and the time to point fingers and blame is past.
The time that is here is for parents of MS 180 and 198 to ask and get some answers. Stand up parents!
I am calling on all parents of MS 180 and MS 198 to attend the next CEC meeting on January 20 at PS 60 in Ozone Park and ask the following questions: 1. With class sizes being smaller why is more learning not taking place?
2. What type of support is the Regional Office giving the teaching staff, principal and assistant principals at MS 180 and 198?
3. Who is going to hire my child with them receiving this bare bones bargain basement education?
4. Why does MS 198 not have a Parent Coordinator?
5. When will my concerns and needs be addressed?
If you can not attend call them at 718-642-5805 and ask them the questions and I am sure you also have some of your own.
Also, the community must come to the Community Board 14 meeting on January 11 at K of C Hall on Beach 90th Street to oppose the proposal to put a MOBILE NEEDLE EXCHANGE VAN IN THE THRIFTWAY MALL on Mott Avenue.
Bush Is A Great President
President Bush has been reelected in the largest popular vote landslide in the history of presidential elections, showing a nation in the most united ever. The reason for that is his excellent four years in office.
Four years ago President Bush picked up a nation nearly destroyed by the Bill and Hillary Clinton regime of eight years. The Clintons left the USA with an economy in shambles, almost an economic depression, an economy only good for crooks like Martha Stewart and Enron, which President Bush put in jail. For the rest of us there were jobs flipping hamburgers, if at all. America became a Clinton-ville of homeless.
As the Muslims bombed the World Trade Center in 1993, the USS Cole, several embassies, Bill Clinton was busy doing you know what with you know who. However, in response, he invaded Bosnia, Kosovo and Haiti killing thousands of innocents, and yet those countries had nothing to do with Muslim terrorism.
Bill Clinton was an illegitimate President, elected by a tiny minority in a divided nation helped by Ross Perot that took votes away from the Republican Party.
Bill Clinton was the only sleazy, crook, President in the history of the USA.
President Bush gave us tax cut and so we have got the best economy in history, with well-paid good jobs for anybody who wants to work.
President Bush responded swiftly to the Muslim terrorist with the Patriot Act and the liberation of Afghanistan and Iraq, punishing and defeating the terrorists that never dare again to attack the USA. We are a safe nation now.
President Bush is an honest decent man with high moral values.
Reelecting President Bush, Americans have shown to be the smartest people in the world.
What a happy nation we are!
Thanks NYPD Cops
I would like to thank Police Officers Weisenhauer and Lisa from the 100 Precinct for the great Christmas gifts they delivered to my home from my twin sons, Christopher and Dylon Parisi.
Those two officers and the entire police precinct deserve recognition for what they did. They went to homes throughout the Rockaways with gifts for the children.
My sincerest thanks go out to both of you. Have a wonderful New Years and keep safe.
AND THE PARISI TWINS
Candles For Peace
Please help me to get the concept of Peace Candles in American windows published in your paper.
This is a critical time in our country. The nation is sorely divided over Iraq and our brave young men are leaving for war every week. We need to demonstrate our loyal support for our troops.
If every home here in the Rockaways displayed a lighted Peace Candle in their windows from dusk to midnight until our soldier come home and the war in Iraq is over it would show shining support for the heroic sacrifices they are making to keep us safe here at home.
Someone once remarked, “it is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.” I say, “it is better to light one Peace Candle than to curse the war in Iraq.” The Americans are a peace-loving nation and Peace Candles in our homes can show that we believe in peace want to have it in our lives.
Remember how we felt when an ocean of American flags appeared after 9/11? We were united. It is time to unite this country again for peace. A lighted candle in our windows can become a powerful beacon for peace and a reminder to pray for our troops.
Just envision lighted Peace Candles in every home in Rockaway and then in millions of homes all across America. If we can light the windows of Rockaway we can light the windows of our nation.
It is an ancient Irish custom to place a light in the window at night for an absent loved one. Peace candles could become an American symbol for unification and our desire for peace in the world. Let’s make it happen in 2005. (Use only electric or battery-operated candles. No matches.)
ANNE M. BYRNE
No Clean Needles
I understand that Community Board 14 will soon vote on allowing a needle exchange program for drug addicts in Far Rockaway.
I want to go on record as opposing a needle exchange because all it does is draw drug addicts to the shopping area. What those addicts will then do after they get their clean needles is anybody’s guess.
We should not be making it easy and healthy for somebody to be a drug addict. We should be putting them in jail.
Say no to the needle exchange program and keep our community safe.