2005-07-01 / Letters


Simon Got It Done

To The Editor,

I just wanted to express my gratitude to Rockaway’s Democratic District Leader Lew Simon for his knowledge and expertise pertaining to a significant problem with my water main.

Simon got the Water Department to visit my home in less than 24 hours, after futile attempts on my part. He also informed me that I should not have to pay for charges incurred, due to the faulty location of the water main pipes in the street. 

Simon got the job done effectively and expeditiously.


Curb Your Dog

Dear Editor,

As a homeowner in Rockaway Park, I’m writing this to all the dog owners who choose to use other peoples’ lawns as their dogs toilet.

I maintain my lawn, and I have a professional landscaper who keeps my lawn perfectly manicured and these morons choose to let their dogs urinate and defecate on my lawn. What part of “Curb Your Dog” don’t they understand? Don’t they know that urine and feces burn the grass?

In addition to those who have their dogs on a leash, there are those who let their dogs off their leashes and they poop right in the middle of my front yard on my lawn. It has always been my understanding that the law stated that people must curb their dogs; must keep their dogs on a leash and that having their leash less dogs on someone else’s property is trespassing. However, time after time there are dogs who poop on my lawn there are dogs who are urinating and defecating on the parameter of my lawn.

What can be done?  With the price of real estate on the peninsula you would think that these people would have a little more class.

Also, there are those that do curb their dogs and pick up after them and then have the nerve to throw the dog poop down the sewer.

I say, if you don?t like to clean up dog poop ? DON?T OWN A DOG!!!!!


Civility Lost

Dear Editor,

As a Belle Harbor homeowner and association member, I was disappointed to read Sonia Giannios’s personal attack on someone who simply disagrees with her. When one stoops to name-calling such as “low life and little Hitler” in print, their lack of dignity and civility is evident.

The medians on Rockaway Beach Boulevard are clearly safer for our children and neighbors. The inconvenience to non-residents is none of my concern. Riis Park provides refreshments, facilities, and plenty of parking. Enjoy your summer. LARRY MCGUIRE

Education Is Weighty Problem

Dear Editor;

I recently attended a meeting at Lew Simon’s office where the democratic candidate for mayor, Mr. Gifford Miller, came to explain his position on a number of issues. Although my initial reasons for attending the meeting were very different, the issue weighing heaviest on my mind as I left was the problem of education in our public schools. I have to say that I was very disappointed with most of Mr. Miller’s proposed solutions to the problem. The main goals that he discussed were to lower class size, raise salaries, in order to attract and retain quality teachers where they are most needed, and increase funding for after school programs. This sounds very nice, and it may help somewhat to ease the burden for our over stressed and under appreciated teachers, who certainly deserve it. However, I believe that in effect it is just a band-aid approach, which can only serve to mask the symptoms of the disease rather than actually treat the disease. The problem in our schools is not the class size and the quality of teachers, it is the general lack of discipline, respect, and values that is a reflection of today’s popular culture.

I went to Catholic school from first through eighth grade with a class of 52 children and one teacher. After that I attended Beach Channel High School and had a very positive experience. We didn’t have a fraction of the problems that the public schools have today. Of course, that was a time when most children were still taught to respect parents, teachers, and other authority figures. Back then, if ANY adult saw a child doing something wrong, their parents were told right away, and the parents said “Thank you”, not “Mind your own business”, and the problem was dealt with. My mother came to this country with only an eighth grade education, and my father was drafted right after high school. He became a postal clerk and she spent her life as a homemaker. They were just plain folks, but they taught me the things that really mattered, and they drilled into me the importance of getting a good education, even though they weren’t able to pursue higher education themselves.

Shortly after graduating from Brooklyn College I had my own son. I went to work full time when he was three months old, out of necessity. My marriage didn’t work out and so I spent most of the next eighteen years as a single parent. We certainly had our share of difficult times as everyone does. I was very blessed that my parents were willing and able to care for him when I wasn’t able to be there, and so these values were passed on to another generation. I put as much time and effort as I could into being a responsible parent, and I did my best to provide enriching and educational experiences for him. This could include such simple and inexpensive activities as an evening at home with the Discovery Channel, reading a chapter a night from a good book series, or just a conversation about the events of the day. My son went to public schools from pre-K through high school. He never attended an after school program, and his high school was so over crowded that they had to have different time schedules for each grade. However, he graduated Summa Cum Laude from Midwood High School and just completed his first year at Cornell University. His experience is not unique. Most of his school friends did similarly well or better, even though many of them were immigrants with limited resources and a new language to learn, and some even lacked the parental support that my son had. But the main thing they all have in common is that the important lessons were taught in their homes or ingrained in their cultures.

Nothing the public school system can do can possibly make up for the lack of instruction in the home in these vital areas. In addition, it is certainly not right that parental responsibilities be shifted onto the taxpayers of this city. However, I realize that we have to work with things as they are and not as they should be, and we have to start somewhere. Therefore, I believe that taxpayer money would be better spent in the following areas:

- Educating parents in responsible and effective parenting.

- Educating children from a very young age in proper conduct, respect for authority, respect for others, self respect, and self discipline.

- Impressing upon children the importance of getting a good education, for themselves, for society, and for future generations.

- Impressing upon children and teenagers the tremendous responsibility that comes with being a parent, and teaching them to abstain from adult behaviors until they are in a position to accept the responsibilities of adulthood and parenthood.

- Setting and enforcing proper standards of conduct in the public school system and holding students and parents accountable for their actions.

As Martin Luther King Jr. said in his famous speech, his dream was that every person would be judged by the content of their character. If this were the standard, how would we measure up? And how will our children and grandchildren fare? The American dream that each generation would reach farther than the last can still be a reality. But we need to get to the root of the problem, rather than just clip off dead leaves to make things look better on the outside. I pray that our next elected officials have the vision to see to the heart of the problem, face it head on, and make a real and lasting difference in our public schools.


Thank You, Coach

Dear Editor,

Quite often we hear of parents complaining about their child’s coach because of certain disagreements. For example, they often complain that he or she is unfair or doesn’t play their child enough or even at all, etc. On the other hand, when do we hear about a person who coaches a team not because he has a child on that team, but because he loves the kids, wants to teach them how to play, and his most important lesson is to have fun whether you win or lose? That person is Jim Hurley. I have had the pleasure of meeting Jim Hurley three years ago when my daughter was lucky enough to be placed on his softball team, and since then she has continued to play for him. Whether my daughter plays a full game or three innings, she is so happy to be a part of his team. When she is playing in the game she always does the best she can, and when she is on the bench she cheers her teammates on to let them know she is constantly there to support them. At 8:45 on a rainy Sunday morning when Mr. Hurley’s team, The Lawrence Well Pump, is scheduled to play, they all show up gloves and bats in hand ready to go, while you might have one or two from the other team. This says something about how these girls respect their coach no matter how much playing time they get. This is to an incredible man who has taught so many girls through the years not about winning, but how to be a part of his team. Mr. Hurley, we appreciate everything you do for us. Thank You.


Wasted Tax Dollars

Dear Editor,

The following letter was sent to New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly.

First off, I am starting this letter of complaint advising you I am a very, very ring wise businessman. A former veteran MP who guarded German prisoners of war and who was formerly involved with all sorts of politicians; a guy that formerly held a carry permit when I owned a business when that was necessary; a guy who came in contact with police procedure; a guy who was able on his own to take the City of New York before the Federal Court Pro Se and secure damages for civil rights violations pertaining to my business; a guy who experienced people up the ladder and those at the bottom rung. This is a two-phase letter to get my point across to you.

Phase 1 – Some weeks ago while traveling along 14 Street Manhattan I observed bicycle people at Union Square carrying out some sort of disruptive action against the police. I told my lady friend lets park the car and observe. Explaining to her Union Square is a place where people in history exhibit their anger against government. Thought I would give her a lesson about history that this real estate was where left-leaning organizations exposed their anger against government. Some were arrested because of disruptive actions. I said to her they deserve being arrested. These were angry people.

Phase 2 – Last night, returning home to Far Rockaway approaching the tolls at the Triboro Bridge to Queens at 11 p.m. I experienced actions of your Police Department realizing why the bicycle people were so angry against the police. Your motorcycle police with blaring, screaming horns and red flashing lights tailgating me, scaring me and other motorists putting us in harm’s way, almost causing a traffic accident. My tax dollars were being used by your police with your o.k. to lead two commercial Academy Tour buses. Evidently, your police were willing to break the vehicle and traffic law contrary to equal protection of the law. To give some VIP’s a police escort at my expense and my fellow thousands of motorists. There was no police emergency. You were escorting people to the airport who attended a Yankee ballgame. Thousands saw this.

This disgusting procedure then made me realize why the bicycle people on 14 Street were willing to be arrested. I was so angry I was ready, willing and able to take you before a Supreme Court judge by order to show case to explain why my tax dollars and citizen tax dollars are being used in this fashion. Then I said to myself, if you condone this procedure, you weren’t worth the effort to proceed. ALBERT A. FRANKEL

Dangerous Neponsit Conditions

Dear Editor;

This letter is in regards to the running/biking path along Beach Channel Drive by the Marine Park Bridge (opposite Riis Park Parking Lot). Now, I have been a resident of Belle Harbor for 14 years and enjoy the community very much. I participate in many activities the community has to offer. I too am and avid runner and have been running the path in question for the last 8+ years. I must say, this is the worst I have seen it. Upon talking to several of my neighbors who also frequent this path, we all agreed, something must get done.  We would like you to expose the following conditions in our community.

In May, there were signs posted on the poles that said “No Standing Anytime”. These signs are no longer there. Therefore everyone who wants to fish along the bay park in an area this is for emergency stopping only.  Not too mention the numerous times the people who fish park their trucks/ SUVs on the path that the residents in the community run/bike along, making this a hazard for the residents. There are numerous craters along the fence of the Bay wall that stand from 3ft - 6ft deep. This evening I saw a homeless person resting on a log within the crater.  How dangerous is this for me, as a female runner? or the kids I passed who were on their bikes heading home for dinner? or better yet, when is the wall going to fall into the bay?

Since when are open fire allowed in a park facility? And, since when has the bay been considered a place to camp out and have parties for numerous people?

Its amazing, a few blocks down you have million dollar homes and in the shadows are some of the most undesirable conditions on this peninsula.

I am writing to you today because I have tried to contact Anthony Weiner and Chuck Schumer to address this issue so we can make this a safe environment for all. When I call the Parks Dept. they say call NYPD and vice versa. 

Please help us address this matter by investigating or writing a caption on the conditions in Belle Harbor. Lets make this a safe community for all.


Really ‘Keep Out’ Signs

To the Editor:

“Let the Children Bring Down the No Parking Signs West of 116 Street.”

The Rockaway Catholic Jewish Council recently celebrated its 20th

anniversary with its Brotherhood/ Sisterhood Awards Breakfast, June 5 at St. Francis de Sales auditorium in Belle Harbor. There were over 185 brotherhood/ sisterhood essays submitted by the public and parochial school students in the Rockaway and Broad Channel areas. 

It was stated that the Awards Breakfast essay contest promotes tolerance and understanding. In addition it is encouraged that the youngsters continue to put their ideas into action. What better opportunity to put their ideas into action than to come to the next Community Board 14 meeting at Knights of Columbus Hall, 90 Street at 7:45 p.m. with their parents and sign up for public speaking time. They could really make a difference by speaking up for brotherhood, tolerance, and justice by urging New York City to take down the No Parking (Keep Out) signs across the western part of the Rockaway peninsula. 

This should occur in order to allow persons of different races, religions or nationalities as well as friends and relatives of people already living in the area to visit friends and use our public beaches in the summer. They have an American civil right to park their cars at the empty city curbs.

These children should be here to support the decent values U.S. soldiers fought and died for in the past and in Iraq and Afghanistan today.  The Rockaway Catholic Jewish Council, Church leaders, Civil Rights groups, and elected citywide political leaders should also attend this historical meeting.

May God bless these adults and children in their noble endeavor.  The American people deserve no less.




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