2005-08-05 / Letters


Accident Victim Extends Thanks

Dear Editor,

I am writing to thank those who changed a very unfortunate accident into a tolerable one. On Friday, July 16, I fell on the boardwalk at 106 Street. I broke my nose, and two bones in my elbow. I was taken to Peninsula Hospital, and was met there by Lew M. Simon, the Democratic District Leader. He stayed with me for three and a half hours while the caring doctors and nurses competently treated my injuries.

I was so compassionately cared for that I did not worry about my situation, or its satisfactory outcome. I left the hospital knowing that I had gotten the best possible medical care, and now am on the mend.

I very gratefully thank Lew Simon and the staff of Peninsula Hospital for the professional and humane treatment I got at such a trying time.


Mirsky Misses The Point

Dear Editor,

In Stuart Mirsky’s column about Karl Rove, he misses the point entirely.

There’s not a person in Washington, Republicans or Democrats who would argue that Karl Rove is the most influential voice in President Bush’s camp, even more so than Cheney.  He has been so throughout Bush’s political career.

The President came out over a year ago and stated he would fire anyone who was involved with the leak.  I assume that Bush had to have asked all of his staff if they were involved before he made that statement and was assured they weren’t.  This means one of two things happened.  Either Karl Rove, one of Bush’s most trusted advisers on policy, lied to the President of The United States and said he wasn’t involved or Rove admitted his involvement and Bush thought he could get past this unscathed.  Either way this is a complete compromise of national security.  Forget politics and the semantics of whether or not Wilson’s wife was a covert agent at the time of the leak.

How can Bush ever trust Rove again or why should we trust Bush?


Kind Word For The Dead

Dear Editor:

Why do we always wait for people to die before we say a kind word about them? The recent passing of John Trainor had a lot of people around Beach 116 Street breathing a sigh of relief.

On the other side of the coin there were a great many people who knew John, and they were feeling sorrow for him. In many ways John was a deep-thinking man, and it makes one wonder why do so many educated people like John Trainor take the same road in life?

Obviously, there was something wrong, and only a trained social worker might have recognized the problem. Common sense will tell us that no normal person would live on the street, as we see so many people doing nowadays. John didn’t have to live on the streets had he been of sound mind. He wasn’t lazy in any sense. He could turn his hand to many professions, roofing, painting, gardening, etc. John was also an accomplished musician and turned down many good-paying gigs. Never once did he mention his talent as a musician. From a first glance, one could say that the alcohol got the better of him, but it was a lot more than alcohol.

Unfortunately, Rockaway Beach is not the place to go for help, and it’s doubtful if there is help anywhere for people like John. Too many homeless people in Rockaway Beach are dying without much notice, especially the foreigners. Has anyone ever seen a social worker come and talk to the unfortunates living on the streets, to offer help of any kind? It’s the level of compassion that is surprising in Rockaway. It’s very low, and in some cases, none at all. There was more compassion under the Czars of Russia, and the Rulers of ancient Rome and Greece than there is on the streets of Rockaway Beach in this so called modern age.

The law must be changed in cases like John Trainor when it comes to being admitted to an Emergency Room in a hospital. Too many times they sign themselves out of the hospital when they are barely able to stand on their feet to sign the release sheet. These people are not capable of making the right decisions for themselves. Government should intervene and put the doctors in charge, just as government intervened in the Helmet Law, the Seatbelt Law, Social Security, etc, etc. It would do a few things. First, it would give a reasonable chance of survival to the patient. Second, it would lift a huge burden off the taxpayers who have to pay for the countless trips in an ambulance to the Hospital. How many times have we seen emergency service ambulances used as nothing short of taxi service? There have always been the John Trainors, and unfortunately, the future holds the same for too many like them if the law is not changed to protect them from themselves.


Responsive Addabbo

Dear Editor,

I’m writing this letter for the unusual reason of thanking an elected official and staff for their help on multiple issues.

Usually when we call a city agency or an elected official we are put on hold or sent to voicemail immediately even secretaries don’t answer phones anymore.

I have recently called this office regarding a few issues. One was the repaving of the streets. Another was the concrete work on the Pat Brackley Garden.

The most recent was regarding the excessive speed and recklessness of our Park Enforcement Police officers on the beach.

I witnessed them responding to a group of teens skimboarding on an enclosed beach (another issue). As you probably know, skimboarding takes place in about 1 to 2 inches of water.

The response was at a high rate of speed and reckless. (Maximum speed, except in emergency is 5 to 10 miles per hour.)

They ran over towels and posed a clear threat to beachgoers, particularly children.

By the way, some of their ATV’s are diesel powered. Diesel fuel contains some of the most carcinogenic substances known to man. So much for the cleanest air in N.Y.C.

The purpose of this letter is to thank Councilman Addabbo and his staff, particularly Sandy, for answering the phone with a real person, finding out about each issue and getting back to me quickly with the appropriate information – even when I didn’t need or request a call back.

The councilman has also been gracious with his time for our youth.

Everyone knows about the skate park. There are some minor problems that can only be addressed with input from the kids who use it.

My 17-year old son requested to meet with the councilman regarding these issues. He met with him for more than an hour and he is now looking into a solution.

In closing, I would like to say, I wish all our elected officials were as responsive. Once again, thank you.


Domestic Violence

Dear Editor,

I think there should be stricter laws and rules for domestic violence. Why can’t they set up an anonymous system like they do for child abuse? If we see and know for a fact that someone is being abused, someone should come out and investigate for about a month or two. Why must we have to go to the precinct and report it ourselves? Nine out of ten women are terrified to go to the cops, thinking it will get worse. Some women are trapped in their own homes, either they are too scared to leave or are held there against their will.

Just the way people and neighbors can call and help an abused child, I think the same should go for women or men of domestic violence.


Better Than Expected

Dear Editor;

Geez, Howard your numbers are just not working out.  You say that in half a year (182.5 days approx.) that there were 47,121 recruits.  That is 258.19726 recruits a day (Approx.) 259 times 365 days is 94,535 recruits in a year.  That is 14,535 more or Approx. 15.37525% BETTER THAN EXPECTED. 

Am I missing something, oh, your anti President Bush, anti get along, anti anything conservative approach to reporting.  But you are assuming the masses are ignorant, oh yeah, wrong again.  The only draft there will be is the one between your ears.

I still enjoy reading the online Wave- Hi Mom.


Sanders Not The One

Dear Editor,

I know that everyone is entitled to have their own opinion, but I must wholeheartedly disagree those who have written who feel that Councilman James Sanders deserves another four years in office.

Councilman Sanders is very hard to reach, if you can get him at all. His office doesn’t return phone calls or respond to letters. If you want an appointment or need help with a City related matter, you have to put it in writing. Why? Is James Sanders the President of the United States?

If a person’s street is flooded or a tree has fallen or a park needs improvement, then Councilman Sanders and his staff need to be fully accessible and supportive to the people that are looking to him for help! That is why he was elected in the first place, isn’t it?

The fact that Councilman Sanders is chair of a committee means absolutely nothing if he hasn’t used it to better our community. Councilman Sanders has been in office for nearly four years and only now, a couple of months before an election, we see him all over the Rockaways, promising money to organizations and schools. Where has he been for the last four years?

I, for one, am sick and tired of elected officials taking us for granted and only showing up a few weeks before an election. The time has come for voters to pay more attention to the people we elect to represent us, and you can be sure that on Election Day I’ll be voting for David Hooks!



Graffiti Issues

Dear Editor,

For the past two years the graffiti on the back wall of CVS Drugstore (Holland Avenue and 90 Street) remains—and at this point, just like I took the time and advised and asked for help in having it removed two years ago, with no success, I now ask to please use your influence and have this graffiti removed for the obvious reasons. It is an eyesore, illegal, and presents an appearance of blight conditions.

All of you know the location of CVS Drugstore. Please call ‘Steve,’ (no last name ever provided to me) head of the management company that manages the Dayton Shopping Plaza at (516) 877-1677 and ask him to have it removed. Can someone please help in this matter.


Asks For Traffic Survey

The following letter was sent by Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer to Commissioner Iris Weinshall of the Department of Transportation.

Dear Commissioner Weinshall:

I am once again writing to you regarding Shore Front Parkway in Rockaway Beach, Queens.

In the past five days, two serious automobile accidents have occurred in or around the vicinity of Beach 80 Street and Shore Front Parkway. One of the accidents resulted in a fatality and caused serious injury to some passengers.

Shore Front Parkway is a heavily utilized street that is populated by many high-rise apartments on the north side. The south side of this four-lane divided roadway is adjacent to the Boardwalk and beach.

Many residents, visitors and beach-goers traverse back and forth across the street daily. This activity, along with double-parked or illegally-parked cars “dropping off” beach visitors, creates a safety hazard for motorists and pedestrians alike.

However, since no traffic control devices currently exist, for more than 20 blocks (from Beach 73 to Beach 92 Streets), excessive speed along Shore Front Parkway creates an extreme safety hazard.

Therefore, I am requesting that your office conduct a comprehensive evaluation of Shore Front Parkway from Beach 73 Street to Beach 109 Street to determine if any traffic control devices should be installed to help ensure the safety and well being of the area’s residents.

The 100 Police Precinct has pledged their support in helping to curtail excessive speed through increased enforcement.

Thank you in advance for your time and attention in this regard. I anxiously await your response.



More On Selfish Neighbors

Dear Editor;

This is in response to the selfish neighbors and their parking spaces. I would like to clear this up because it seems in Rockaway if you tell a lie long enough the majority will believe it as true! I have two driveways one on the side of my house and the other barely a car length away. In the past neighbors have parked in front of my house blocking my side driveway. Trying not to hit their car I have broken four mirrors on my side fence, costing me close to four hundred dollars.

When they block my other driveway I have to go over the grass. Not to mention the many times I can’t get in or out. Yet, I’m called selfish and they’re outraged that I guard my street parking space. I have never seen such inconsiderateness, stupidity or arrogance that they will park their car two feet from the curb and then clearly see they don’t fit, yet they will go in their house.


Boardwalk Ramps Needed

Dear Editor,

Thanks to State Senator Malcolm A. Smith and his staff, a letter was sent to Adrian Benepe, Commissioner of Parks and Recreation, stating that a ramp is desperately needed at Beach 102 Street from the boardwalk to the sand so that the handicapped and mothers with strollers and young children can have access to the beach.

Presently the only ramps are at Beach 94 Street or Beach 109 Street. I’m urging my Rockaway neighbors to write letters of support to: Honorable Adrian Benepe, Commissioner—NYC Department of Parks and Recreation, The Arsenal, Central Park New York, NY 10021.


State Senator Malcolm A. Smith, on behalf of Mary Dever Kelly, sent this letter to Commissioner Adrian Benepe, NYC Department of Parks and Recreation.

Dear Commissioner Benepe:

This letter is written on behalf of my constituent, Mary Dever Kelly.

Ms. Kelly stated that a ramp is desperately needed at Beach 102 Street from the boardwalk to the sand so that the handicapped and mothers with strollers and young children can have access to the beach. Ms. Kelly advised that there are numerous apartment dwellers in this area that would use this ramp and presently they are forced to go to Beach 94 Street or Beach 109 Street to gain access to the beach, thus causing a hardship to many.

The concerns of my constituents are of a great interest to me. In my ongoing efforts to maintain a high quality of life standard, I am respectfully requesting that you consider the construction of a ramp at Beach 102 Street in Rockaway Park. Your attention to this matter will be appreciated.


Malcolm A. Smith

State Senator, 14 District

Little League MVP

Dear Editor,

The Rockaway Little League named its first league-wide Most Valuable Player this year but the choice wasn’t easy.

I met Marty Andresen on several occasions over the season and he always had those faraway eyes, but I just assumed he was thinking about turning in his royal blue and orange uniform once and for all the winning NY team’s navy blue and white uniform.

I was ready to welcome him to the winning side when he told me that wasn’t the reason but he was trying to come up with the right qualities for a league MVP. He said there are many kids that can hit the ball over the fence or strike any number of batters out or make diving catches in the field but those aren’t the qualities I’m looking for. I wished him luck on his decision.

When I met him a few days later wearing a big smile on his face he told me he had figured out the right qualities for a league MVP. The quality he was looking for was leadership and the player that most exhibited leadership in the league was Chris McCabe. I know this because I helped coach the team that Chris McCabe played on this year and for the benefit of the readers who don’t know him he is the boy with the biggest heart and the biggest will to play even though he is confined to a wheelchair.

When Chris comes into the dugout he doesn’t go down to the end of the bench out of the way, he sits right next to the dugout opening where every player and coach has to climb around his wheelchair to get in and out. But no one ever asks him to move out of the way because that’s his spot. That’s leadership.

Whenever Chris comes up to bat there is such community spirit that players and parents from both teams root him on to get a hit regardless of the score. That’s leadership. If there is a game where we are losing and the players and coaches begin to feel sorry for themselves Chris doesn’t allow it saying there’s always time to catch up. That’s leadership. Hitting home runs, striking batters out and making diving catches are the things that can be taught but leadership is a special quality that some people just have and Chris is one of those people making him the unanimous choice this year for league MVP.


Sanders Is The Man

Dear Editor:

One of the greatest intellectual, religious, spiritual and political minds of the Twentieth Century has spoken very loud and clear in his endorsement of James Sanders for re-election to the City Council.

One of my favorite quotes is Einstein’s “Visionary thinkers will always receive violent opposition from mediocre minds.” Well, the logical extension of this thought is “Like minds recognize like minds” and “Visionary thinkers support visionary thinkers.” Given the time, opportunity and support—James Sanders will undoubtedly be as productive, successful and legendary as Floyd Flake. I truly believe this. James Sanders has a great mind and a lion’s heart.

The Reverend Floyd Flake’s accomplishments while Congressman far supersede most of the then and now Queens county party leaders that were “leading” while he was in office as well as those who continue(d) to “lead” after he retired from political service. The Honorable Floyd Flake’s accomplishments have etched his name in the annals of “great American political theorists to study and emulate” whether within the corridors of universities, colleges, political organizations and especially in, if they were serious about truly being productive, political party clubs e.g. Thurgood Marshall Democratic Club or the Queens County Democratic Club. Is there anyone who would dispute this? And if so, surely it’s not based on his (Flake’s) productivity and success.

Okay then. The man (and I do mean the maaannn!) has endorsed James Sanders for re-election. What else needs to be said? Wasn’t Reverend Flake the same one who, for the most part, singly “knighted” the current, renown powerful Congressman as heir to his Congressional throne when he (Flake) vacated it several years ago? Then, as far as I am concerned, Reverend Flake’s word is still trustworthy.

If it’s about vision, intelligence, productivity, progress and success then follow Flake’s endorsement. If it’s about working towards some semblance of cohesion, community, and collective wholeness—don’t only vote James Sanders back into office but support him once he’s in there.

If it’s about mediocrity, the same ole tired ass, petty politics and crabs at the bottom of the barrel— pulling each other down and at the end of the day, none of the crabs have anything but bumps, scars and bruises and sad, reluctant memories of “back in the day”—then don’t vote for James Sanders.

It’s a new day. We need to do the right thing—the wise thing—for the right reasons because we might not have this opportunity again. We can’t blow it by chasing ghost dreams.



Local Parking

Dear Editor,

A few thoughts on your specious little editorial about parking restrictions. You begin by quoting the Wave’s own editorial 20 years ago, describing in detail a quality of life to which no New Yorker wants to return. However, in just a few more sentences you describe the parking restrictions in the west end as blatantly ridiculous in terms of safety. Since the end of the Dinkins administration there has been powerful evidence and positive practical results in the association of quality of life issues with crime and safety. This has apparently escaped you. Then you go on to say that the parking restrictions should be made more “reasonable” so that the Federal Government does not punish us or “do it for us.” I would urge my elected officials and editorial writers to strenuously remind the Federal Government that its primary purpose is national security. Their job is to protect us from foreign invaders, not set local parking regulations. Finally, your suggestion that most locals would find a $100 or $200 summer fee for parking reasonable is just wrong. They would consider it another unfair tax, added to the most highly taxed people in the nation.


‘Newcomers’ And Overcrowding

Dear Editor,

I found the Wave’s “Newcomers Guide” very interesting. It was like every merchant had an ad in it. They are probably the only ones who think they will benefit from the new housing all over Rockaway. There are many old time residents who look at the building boom as destroying our Rockaway way of life.

Rockaway was a quiet, laid-back beach community with spectacular views of the ocean and the bay. We were allowed to enjoy our way of life. Our views have been taken away by the likes of Duane Reade and the Ocean Grande. We used to have a restaurant, The Beach Club, where you could sit, eat and drink and look at and enjoy our beautiful ocean setting—that is gone now. You could always find a parking space—not anymore. Soon Rockaway will have both traffic and parking gridlock.

Our quality of life is being destroyed by the greedy developers. Rockaway cannot hold all the people that are coming and that the greedy developers are bringing.

My wife unfortunately had to go to St. John’s Hospital at the end of May. On a Monday morning the Emergency room was a zoo. There were patients all over the place. Patients were in the Emergency room for three to four days waiting for beds in the hospital—but there were no beds available. Three to four people were jammed into rooms that were made for two patients—they had no privacy. When my wife left three families were arguing over who would get her bed.

I asked some staff members why this was going on and was told the overcrowding was because of all the “newcomers” moving in and the hospital did not have the facilities to handle all the new people. Peninsula Hospital is most likely the same.

Where are the “newcomers” children going to go to school? Our schools are overcrowded now. This will completely ruin public education for families who have been in Rockaway for many years. No new schools are being built.

Doctor’s offices are overcrowded now. In the future you won’t be able to get appointments and it will take days to get medical care, and you will wait in doctor’s offices for countless hours before you are seen.

The trains in and out of Rockaway will be so crowded they will be like cattle cars, as the MTA will not put more trains on. The buses will be the same situation.

What’s going to happen when people find that there is no more room, parking, school space, hospital beds, doctor’s appointments and every facility is that people will stop coming to Rockaway.

What’s going to happen to all the “newcomers” who have bought two and three family houses and were told by the greedy developers and real estate salespeople that their rental apartments will pay their mortgage, when this doesn’t happen because there will be a glut of apartments which people will not be able to afford. (Remember, there are no jobs in Rockaway except low paying ones, and our transportation system will be completely overused and overcrowded.)

What will happen is that the banks will foreclose on these houses and the banks and developers will start to offer these apartments to the city for section 8 housing. This is starting to happen already. The city and Manhattan will be able to solve their homeless and shelter problems by shipping all these people to Rockaway like they did when they built the projects.

Unless something is done now to stop this over-development, in a few more years Rockaway will be a disaster area. Our Rockaway way of life will be gone forever.

And the merchants who are now clapping their hands in glee will be wringing their hands in sorrow. This is the reality.


Missed The Boat

Dear Editor:

I Think You Missed The Boat!!!

I am quite disappointed at The Wave’s coverage of the Wounded Warrior Project sponsored by the Graybeards.  I was saddened to see that “Rockaway’s Newspaper since 1893” gave so little press to what I consider one of the best things that Rockaway has been involved in during the 10+ years that I am living here.  The neighborhood rallied and banded together after the terror attacks of September 11 and the crash of Flight 587.  I am proud of that.  However, when 23 of our young wounded veterans of the Iraq war get 3 1/2 days to partake in events that they would not otherwise get the chance to do, I think that it deserves the proper acknowledgement from “our” paper. 

I was fortunate to have one of the soldiers stay with my family during the event.  New friendships and great memories aside, I am embarrassed to send him the copy of The Wave that I promised him.  While he was here, he saw an issue of the paper, and I told him to look forward to the next copy because there would be extensive reporting of the events...or so I thought. 

Although the events were reported on a whole page the following week, more than 3/4 of the page had photos (without captions) with a minimal amount of text.  If you were to compare this amount of coverage to the tremendous impact of this weekend on the soldiers, their families, the numerous volunteers, and the host families, you too would be embarrassed.  I don’t know how or why this happened.  

Regardless of your position as to whether or not we belong in Iraq now or in the future is irrelevant.  These soldiers deserve our respect and more from The Wave.  Spotlighting some of the soldiers’ stories of their lives and their time in combat would have been compelling to almost every one of your readers.  Documenting how happy the soldiers were to be given such a wonderful opportunity to come here and enjoy the water skiing and jet skiing would have made for an interesting read as well. 

I hope that when some of our “old” soldier friends return with “new” soldier friends for future events such as these, they get the proper recognition in the press from The Wave.



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