2009-09-04 / Letters

Stop Rockaway Bashing

Dear Editor,

The Rockaways are concluding the worst summer in recent memory as riptides claimed the lives of seven unwary swimmers. Unfortunately, the recurring tragedies have made the Rockaways vulnerable to a relentless media assault spearheaded by The New York Post.

In early August, a Post photographer snapped the now infamous photo of a lifeguard wearing headphones which has come to symbolize lifeguard incompetence. The fact that the photo was taken around 10 a.m. on a rainy day when the beach was deserted has been conveniently overlooked. The unknown lifeguard became a scapegoat for the drowning of Daniel O'Neil, which occurred when he chose to go swimming on a deserted stretch of beach which is reserved for fishing " only. As if that wasn't enough, along comes the Post's 'society diva' Cindy Adams to give the already wounded Rockaways another black eye. Adam's column from August 23 entitled "Broadway Not Rockaway" laments that in an effort to make Times Square more pedestrian friendly it now resembles Rockaway's boardwalk.

Adams seems to have a short memory since the Times Square/Broadway area she claims to love was once an unsafe mecca reserved for winos, prostitutes, panhandlers and zonked out junkies. Adams must also long for the days when the Times Square landscape was dominated by fleabag hotels, x-rated movie houses and peep shows. Old Times Square with its motto 'be afraid, be very afraid,' is nothing to be proud of.

Adams, another snotty Manhattan elitist, should stick to reporting celebrity scandals and stop looking down her nose at a community that has taken far too much during a nightmarish season. Rockaway bashing has to stop.


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Thank you Sharon Rutman!

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