Divided, Rockaway Fails
This week, The Wave wants to make sure the people of Rockaway are doing their best to create an environment that lives up to the demands it has been making.
When businesses and residents work together to hold events like they did this past weekend, it is a win-win scenario for everyone. It shows that even Superstorm Sandy can’t stop Rockaway from getting back on its feet. It also sends a message to those elected officials who keep promising us a return to life and commerce pre-Sandy, that we are unified and ready to move forward.
However, not every festival or event that’s been held in Rockaway since the traditional start of summer can boast that harmony or unity of purpose. Not every charitable organization and alliance of business owners has put the business of purpose above ego, or the needs of the many before the needs of the few.
Sadly, the internal battle of wills and agendas that always seem to accompany these types of events wasn’t kept internal. It became public.
What should have been a celebrated event that overcame some initial mistakes – which every major event has – it instead was profiled in the media as another Rockaway drama. Instead of outsiders versus locals, or neighborhoods griping about preferential treatment of another neighborhood, this was local business versus local business.
Both sides are guilty of this, and both sides need to realize this kind of scuffle of personality leads to distrust, which helps no one.
It also sends an alarming message to the elected officials who initially supported these types of efforts. They have indicated to The Wave they will be reluctant to do so again.
Whatever issues remain, whatever obstacles need to be overcome to bring more events to our streets and more commerce to our businesses, they must be met. It is easier said than done, but be done it must. For everyone’s sake.
The Wave’s position is, and always will be, to provide the people of Rockaway with the most comprehensive coverage of the peninsula. It is our job to educate, inform and engage our readership to the best of our ability. Rockaway demands that of us, and we are more than happy to deliver.