Opinion

December, 2013

New Voices

Queens Museum exhibit showcases provocative artwork

For the next month, the Queens Museum will host the South Asian Women’s Creative Collective’s yearly visual arts exhibition, titled “A Bomb, with Ribbon Around It.” The name refers to a critique of the works of Frida Kahlo, whose artistic style and complex identity flew in the face of her contemporaries. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Less gov’t means more problems for people

Another week, another dose of libertarian nonsense from frequent letter writer Ed Konecnik, who seems to think that freedoms are taken away by fair tax laws, welfare, food stamps and anything the government does to assist the folks who need a helping hand. Comments (4).
Letters

U.S. must keep its guard up

The end of 2013 does not promise national security for the United States or the world. It comes at a time that for once in recent memory the two national parties have reached an agreement that may avoid fiscal warfare for the next two years. Comment.
Editorial

Dangerous Roads

Less than a week after transportation activists marched along Queens Boulevard to call for more safety features on the treacherous thoroughfare, a motorcyclist hit a pedestrian in Woodside and both died. Comment.
Letters

DOE inflates the city’s graduation rate

Mayor Michael Bloomberg claims that our educational system has made “incredible progress” under his reforms. His evidence is the increase in the graduation rate. Comments (2).
QueensLine

Jackson Heights native Rettig starred in TV’s ‘Lassie’

Best known as Jeff Miller, the star of the TV series “Lassie,” Queens native Tommy Rettig was a child actor who appeared in numerous films and television shows in the 1950s and ’60s. He performed alongside Hollywood stars, including Marilyn Monroe, Robert Mitchum and Ronald Reagan. Comments (1).
Letters

Inform people of school hearing

It was disconcerting to read that Mandingo Tshaka still believes I supported construction of a new school at the Keil Brother’s site (“Community deserved say in planned school,” Dec. 6-12). Comments (2).
Political Action

Conservative Party hopeful in next year’s elections

In a recent interview, Thomas Long, chairman of the Queens Conservative Party, gave his views of various current political topics. Comments (1).
Letters

People can’t rely on gov’t for everything

Responses to my letters to the editor reveal how much dependence and trust in an intrusive government is ingrained in our psyche. Without a shred of evidence, writers claim I advocate for a country with no government or regulation, and where people fend for themselves and die in the streets. Comments (3).
Bayside

Tip of the week

Letters

Make elections more democratic

Gov. Andrew Cuomo must lead the charge toward accomplishing the reforms advanced by his Moreland Commission to investigate public corruption. Comments (1).
I Sit and Look Out

Try to do right by others during this holiday season

During what many people call the “Season of Light,” this time of holidays and holy days, I recall past seasons. I think many people do that as we come to a new year. Comments (2).
Letters

Some school lessons must remain

While the emphasis today for our students is to be more technologically savvy, what is equally important is that cursive writing still needs to be taught in our schools. Comments (1).
The Civic Scene

Testing, constant changes ruin education for students

With the arrival of 2014, a new city administration will take over our city. One of the issues it will face is the revitalizing of the city school system. For the past 12 years, there have been changes in our schools that have left the staff stressed out and dispirited. Morale is low. Comment.
Editorial

Leave St. Nick Alone

What a silly flap over Santa Claus’s DNA. Comments (1).
Letters

Charter schools not all that great

A charter school recently made headlines for punishing a mischievous student by throwing him into the quarantine of a padded cell in the expectation that the trauma would build his character. Comments (1).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

De Blasio must think long-term to plan city’s success

There has never been a better time to be a progressive in New York City. The new mayor, the city public advocate, city comptroller and most of the City Council are from the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, and we will now see if a concentrated focus on the poor and middle class will help vault them to a better station in life. Comment.
Letters

Project for QueensWay steadily progresses

In his Nov. 29-Dec. 5 letter, state Assemblyman Mike Miller (D-Woodhaven) raises questions about the public engagement process for the QueensWay, which is being sponsored by The Trust for Public Land in partnership with Friends of the QueensWay, a group of residents living near the QueensWay. Comment.
Corona

Tip of the week

Letters

City teachers need a new contract

It has now been nearly four years since the contract has expired, and New York city public school teachers are still without a new, fair and decent contract. Comment.
Letters

P-Tech program will sow seeds of pupils’ future success

I am writing this rejoinder to state Sen. Tony Avella’s Nov. 22-28 response to Bob Friedrich’s Nov. 8-14 column “P-Tech program will serve as boon to Martin Van Buren.” Comments (2).
Letters

Mets do not need any more money

One would think the New York Mets and its related companies would be more than gratified at receiving for $1 the Willets Point property acquired by the city for tens of millions of dollars, a taxpayer subsidy of $99 million and the right to construct a 1.4-million-square-foot shopping mall on the Citi Field parking lot, which is part of Flushing Meadows Corona Park, without having to replace parkland or undergo a Uniform Land Use Review Procedure proceeding. Comment.
New Voices

Tutorial center helps students in need prepare for college

A nascent local foundation aims to facilitate better pathways to college for local students through awareness and community empowerment for the students who need it most. The Khan Foundation, the brainchild of Dr. Ivan Khan, seeks not only to mentor and inform low-income and female students, but also to cultivate leadership and develop well-rounded individuals who make appealing candidates for top universities. Comments (1).
Letters

Test students sparingly but carefully

Test mania does not translate into quality education — just the opposite. Comment.
QueensLine

‘Spirit of ‘76’ made 318th stop in Queens during 1948

On the morning of Dec. 7, 1948, Pearl Harbor Day, the “Freedom Train” rolled into Queens and stopped in Flushing for a four-day stay before going on to Jamaica for another two days. It carried priceless documents: the original Declaration of Independence, U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights, Emancipation Proclamation and other important historical papers and artifacts. Comment.
Letters

Queens pols curbed airplane noise

As a Queens resident who has had to deal with the issue of increased airplane noise in our borough, I am writing to commend our local elected officials — specifically U.S. Reps. Steve Israel (D-Melville) and Grace Meng (D-Flushing), state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside) and state Assemblyman Edward Braunstein (D-Bayside) — for their work to curb airplane noise over our neighborhoods and create an Airplane Noise Community Roundtable. Comments (1).
Editorial

Feed the Children

’Tis the season to be jolly, but not if you’re hungry in Queens. Comments (1).
Political Action

Giuliani active in politics without holding office

Rudy Giuliani achieved prominence in federal law enforcement early in his career. Within two years after graduating from New York University Law School, he began working for the U.S. attorney’s office. A brief time after that he became chief of the Narcotics Unit and later executive U.S. attorney. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Common Core needs a revamp

The newly implemented Common Core standards are not doing well. They have caused nothing but educational Armageddon in classrooms throughout the country and stressed out students, teachers, administrators and parents. Comment.
Letters

Willets Point treated poorly by city

In view of its longstanding disdain for the poor, the middle class and small businesses in this city, it comes as no surprise that the Bloomberg administration is driving the Willets Point occupants not simply out of the area, but out of business, with not just insufficient time to relocate, but no place to do so. Comment.
Letters

Community deserved say in planned school

In a democracy, the voice of the people must be heard regarding projects planned in a community. Recently, the City Council voted to construct a school on the Keil Bros. property in Bayside, the neighborhood that I have known for more than 82 years. Comments (4).
The Civic Scene

Drilling in upstate shale may do more harm than good

While the use of solar panels and wind to cleanly produce energy slowly grows, some people want to quickly fracture the shale in upstate New York with a mix of toxic chemicals to free shale gas as a source of energy. Comments (6).
Letters

DOE mustn’t shove parents under bus

We are looking for people to give our cause a voice. Our gifted and talented class, in its fifth year at PS 203, were given our eviction notice. The city Department of Education had a meeting with school principals, guidance counselors and the Community Education Council Nov. 12, minus the parents, to inform them of a new policy. Comments (23).
On Point

Queens’ civil leaders weigh wood-chipping and bridge tolls

On Dec. 1, the Queens Civic Congress held its 16th annual legislative reception in Douglaston. The QCC, a uniquely Queens institution, is an umbrella organization of more than 100 civic associations. It is an example of productive civic engagement and the adage that “all politics is local.” Comments (1).
Editorial

Trains in Trouble

Queens has the unhappy distinction of being home to one of the four Metro-North passengers killed in the commuter train derailment early Sunday near the Sputyen Duyvil station in the Bronx. Comment.
Opinion

City’s daily multiple murders are in death throes

The thought-provoking author Malcolm Gladwell wrote a book a number of years ago called “The Tipping Point.” It espoused the now-accepted theory that there is a defining stage at which something moves into a new realm, sort of like a “critical mass.” Comments (1).
Health

Tip of the week

Letters

Dems give GOP its just desserts

Finally, the Democrats smacked the Republican Party in the face by changing the rules and allowing presidential nominees to be approved by a simple majority — the way it should be. Comments (2).
Letters

DOE needs to gets its act together

Posting on their website the answers to an exam that students had not taken yet and being defensive about it while still demanding that the job security of teachers be linked to the worthless results of discredited tests, qualifies the city Department of Education for a Nobel Prize in Audacity. Comments (1).
New Voices

South Asian charities help out Caribbean for the holidays

After several successful months of gathering books, toys and clothing from the community, local charity West Indians Serving Humanity gathered and shipped 13 cargo barrels with donated items for the needy in Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago Nov. 7. Comment.
Letters

Do not swoon over de Blasio win

Sometimes a gift-wrapped package does not contain a gift. A case in point is Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio, who ran on a ticket espousing the needs of the little people, distinguishing himself from the Bloomberg administration. Comments (1).
Letters

QueensWay meet silences speech

In the United States of America, we are granted certain rights and freedoms by the U.S. Constitution. One of these rights, which I am no stranger to, is the freedom of speech. Comments (4).
No Holds Barred

Faith and State

Some time in my studies of history — probably in Miss Drummond’s course on European History at Newtown High School — I learned about the Holy Roman Empire. I also heard, whether in that class or later at City College, that some wag (who turned out to be Voltaire) had said the HRE was neither Holy, nor Roman nor an Empire. Comments (5).
QueensLine

November 1956 saw a rash of teens causing mischief

November brings to mind crisp autumn breezes, weekend football games and Thanksgiving turkey. In 1956, the nation sent President Dwight Eisenhower back to the White House that month, with only seven mostly Southern states backing Democratic contender Adlai Stevenson. Comment.
Letters

New York’s energy future in wind

New York’s wind energy has given us a lot to be grateful for. Comment.

November, 2013

I Sit and Look Out

City Opera had sets for ‘49 Puccini tribute built in Queens

The first opera I saw was “Faust” at a Saturday matinee of the New York City Opera in what had been the Masonic Temple on 55th Street. I was attending City College at night and working as a copy boy and then a clerk on the city desk of The New York Times. Comments (1).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

If elected mayor, de Blasio should reach out to opponents

One of the greatest political books ever, “A Team of Rivals,” by historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, tells the compelling and relevant tale of President Abraham Lincoln’s unprecedented hiring of his presidential rivals to serve in his administration. Comment.
Editorial

Delay in Service

Commuting on the Long Island Rail Road from Queens to Manhattan can be a maddening experience. All too frequently train service is disrupted because of problems in the four East River tunnels connecting the borough and parts beyond to Penn Station. Comment.
Letters

All stores should be closed on Thanksgiving

It is outrageous that so many stores have decided to open their doors on Thanksgiving, a day that is supposed to be spent with family and friends. Comments (1).
Letters

P-tech plan needs more study

In his Nov. 8-14 TimesLedger Newspapers column, Bob Friedrich discussed the recent city Department of Education decision to co-locate a P-tech high school within the Martin Van Buren High School building. Friedrich spoke in favor of the P-tech concept and also said the co-location of a separate high school was the best method to administer this new program. Comment.
Letters

Remember Ferrigno for her dedication

My good friend, Marjorie Ferrigno, died Nov. 14. She was in her late 90s. Comment.
Letters

Avella takes Friedrich to task over Van Buren

I am writing in response to Bob Friedrich’s Nov. 8-14 column “P-Tech program will serve as boon to Martin Van Buren.” In his column, Friedrich advocates for the city Department of Education’s proposal to co-locate the P-Tech program at Martin Van Buren High School while at the same time attacking my integrity for opposing the co-location. Comments (8).
Political Action

Mayoral ticket benefitted Vallone race for Council

One of the most closely watched City Council races in Queens has ended in a loss for Dennis Saffran to Paul Vallone. It was a highly competitive campaign. Although both District 19 candidates campaigned hard, it was Vallone who was able to get about 300 people to turn out on Election Day and help his campaign. Comment.
Letters

Tnnis not environmentally sound

I am writing in response to a recent media statement from an airline industry advocacy group, Global Gateway Alliance, which urges the Federal Aviation Administration to continue its avoidance of environmental laws regarding Tnnis, the new NextGen flight route over north Queens. Comment.
The Civic Scene

Be aware of surroundings while standing on train platforms

One of the big concerns of patrons of our mass transit system in New York City is safety. The Senior Citizens Advisory Council to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is a group of five senior citizens from each borough who usually meet monthly at 2 Broadway, in Manhattan, to give their evaluations, comments and opinions to MTA officials. At the last SCAC meeting, information was provided concerning keeping the subway safe. Comment.
Editorial

Obliterated Art

New York finds itself in the perpetual balancing act of bolstering its income through commerce without sacrificing the public benefits of artistic endeavors. Comments (1).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

De Blasio outshines Bloomberg on empathy skills

I watched a documentary the other night about President John F. Kennedy and I was struck by how well he was able to connect with voters. Even when he was receiving a long line of well-wishers, he seemed to listen to each one intently. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Beware of governmental crises

Do you believe the attack on Benghazi resulting in four American deaths was prompted by a video? Do you still believe you can keep your doctor and your health plan? Will Lois Lerner at the Internal Revenue Service ever be held responsible for her actions? Do you believe the president was never informed of the National Security Agency surveillance? Would you enter your private information on the government healthcare website with confidence? Comments (3).
Letters

City teachers need their autonomy

Queens has a superior track record with many of the finest educators in the city, but they are being pushed around in all sorts of ways for reasons that have nothing to do with quality of instruction or service to students. Comment.
Whitestone

Sometimes jokes are not funny

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-Texas) father gave a speech to a cheering crowd of Teabaggers in which he said President Barack Obama should “put down the Koran, get off his knees and go back to Kenya.” Comments (2).
New Voices

Different sects, regions celebrate Diwali their way

Hindus, Jains and Sikhs across Queens observed Diwali on the weekend of Nov. 2, an occasion for solemn reflection and giving thanks. The meaning of Diwali varies in these denominations, but for most the start of the festival coincides with the 13th day of the second half of the month of Ashwin on the Hindu lunar calendar, which follows 15-day cycles coinciding with the light and dark (waxing and waning) phases of the moon. Comment.
Letters

Reflect on the memory of JFK

On Nov. 22, we will remember the death of President John F. Kennedy. Comments (2).
Letters

New mayor must back city workers

New Yorkers went to the polls to cast their votes for the next mayor of New York City, and the winner has his work cut out for him. Comments (1).
QueensLine

Second half of Simon and Garfunkel hails from boro

Legendary singing duo Simon and Garfunkel helped define the singer-songwriter generation of the 1960s with their blend of folk and pop music, charming melodies and catchy lyrics. Half of that storied partnership is Forest Hills native Art Garfunkel, born Nov. 5, 1941. Comment.
Editorial

Bring the Public to Queens Museum

The renovation of the Queens Museum is a welcome addition to the borough, which is rapidly honing its reputation as an important cultural destination for the city. Comments (3).
Letters

Living wage in city is possible

Working men and women at Resorts World Casino hit the jackpot recently in what is sure to become a benchmark agreement for casino labor statewide. Comments (1).
Long Island City

Tip of the week

Letters

QueensWay needs support to be like High Line

I want to take a moment to address the QueensWay project, a proposed public greenway that will transform the Long Island Rail Road Rockaway Beach branch, which was abandoned more than 50 years ago. Specifically, the former railroad extends 3.5 miles from Rego Park and Forest Hills down to Ozone Park. This proposed project is one of great concern to many residents in certain areas of the rail line due to its potential negative impact on local residents. Comments (7).
Letters

De Blasio won’t befriend parks

In a mayoral debate Oct. 22 between candidates Democratic city Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and Republican Joseph Lhota, a question came up concerning a professional soccer stadium in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Comments (5).
I Sit and Look Out

Statistics could prove we are the Last Lucky Generation

One night, many years ago, a friend of ours said to me, “We are the last lucky generation.” Comments (3).
Letters

Socialized medicine lowers costs

I would like to comment on the Oct. 25-31 letter “Lawsuits drive up healthcare costs” by Thomas B. Stebbins. Comment.
The Civic Scene

Cause a racket to get something done about airplane noise

The West Cunningham Park Civic Association and the Civic Association of Utopia Estates held a joint general membership meeting, where the new commanding officer of the 107th Precinct, Capt. Fred Grover, and Janet McEneaney and Bob Whitehair, president and vice president of Queens Quiet Skies, spoke. Comment.
Letters

Cuomo must give Rockaways housing

Well, governor, here is an opportunity to prove you are not an elitist politician, not in the pockets of high-line developers and that you care about the needy people of this city that you govern. Comment.
On Point

P-Tech program will serve as boon to Martin Van Buren

The forces of stagnation and inertia were on display recently at a city Department of Education public hearing on the Martin Van Buren High School P-Tech colocation proposal. This program, modeled after a similar school program in Brooklyn, was visited last week by President Barack Obama and is being touted as a model for the nation. Comments (3).
Editorial

Boro Votes Change

The Bill de Blasio landslide effect rumbled across Queens as Democrats secured all but one of the seats up for grabs in the general election. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

De Blasio message of equality for all spurs landslide

Now that it is official and Bill de Blasio has won a sweeping victory for mayor by a 3-1 margin — just four months after he was languishing in fourth place in the Democratic primary polls at around 10 percent — what have we learned? Comments (1).
Health

Tip of the week

Letters

Take precautions before next storm

There is no about it: Our area needs to be better prepared for any future storms that may threaten our coastline. Comment.
Letters

Protest FAA plan over airplane noise

The only way the citizens of northeast Queens are going to get results from the industry-slanted Federal Aviation Administration is to start protesting immediately in front of their offices, government buildings and airline ticket offices. Comments (4).
New Voices

Flushing needs better business growth, transit options

As one of the more vulnerable links in the business community, immigrant businesses struggled during the Great Recession. Though buoyed by growing immigrant communities, many found themselves in direct competition with chain stores and large retailers that have flourished in the past few years, some anchored by large-scale real estate development. Comments (1).
Letters

Do not be quick to blame Van Buren for failures

In response to a column written by Bob Friedrich in TimesLedger Newspapers Oct. 4-10: “There may be light at the end of the tunnel for the nightmare faced by families zoned for Martin Van Buren High School in Queens Village. MVB evokes wonderful memories for its alumni, but while its former reputation as a community school with high graduation rates is well-known, it has since fallen on hard times and by any objective measure of success is a failed school.” Comments (1).
Letters

Down with all standardized tests

State Education Commissioner John King is getting rid of some standardized tests. Did this maven of multiple choice feel the pressure or did he see the light? Enlightenment is a long shot, but miracles happen. Comments (1).
Political Action

Vallone, Saffran make second run for Council seat

In the 19th City Council District in northeast Queens, it has been a hard-fought race between Republican Dennis Saffran and Democrat Paul Vallone. Both are attorneys and have run for this seat before. Vallone ran in a Democratic primary four years ago but lost to Kevin Kim. Twelve years ago, Saffran ran against Tony Avella in the general election and lost by a narrow margin. Comments (1).
Editorial

Vote on Election Day

Forget the odds. The pollsters tell us Bill de Blasio, the Democrats’ candidate of choice, is poised to trounce the GOP’s Joe Lhota by a commanding margin in next week’s mayoral race. Comments (3).

October, 2013

Broad Channel

Tip of the week

Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Lawsuits drive up healthcare costs

One of the highlights of city Public Advocate Bill de Blasio’s campaign for mayor was his arrest at a protest against the closure of another city hospital. De Blasio’s primary solution was and continues to be to throw money at the problem, but unless we address the spiraling costs of lawsuits, New York hospitals will continue to close. Comments (2).
Letters

Debt ceiling debacle will continue next year

After more than two weeks of political gridlock, there was finally an agreement to reopen the government and raise the debt ceiling to prevent the nation from defaulting on its financial responsibilities. Comment.
Letters

Work begins where shutdown ends

It is overdue, but the federal government is open and the debt ceiling has been raised. This is a welcome development for our country, but the damage caused is irreversible and was unnecessary. Comments (1).
QueensLine

‘Civic Virtue’ made its Queens debut in October 1941

In October 1941, with the war in the United States a little more than a month away, war clouds gathered as the Japanese “peace cabinet” stepped down and the United States ordered all ships in the Far East to make for friendly ports. Ships were leaving Japan with American nationals on board while Japanese nationals were preparing to leave America. The Japanese press whipped up hysteria over the Allied oil embargo. Comment.
Letters

The Cliffs should provide a good workout

I would like to respond to your Oct. 11-17 article “The next generation in fitness arrives in Astoria/LIC,” about the Cliffs at LIC grand opening celebration Oct. 10. Comment.
The Civic Scene

Illegal apartments lead to decline in area’s quality of life

People often buy a house or rent a legal apartment in a neighborhood which has a good quality of life. Communities are zoned in such a way so as to protect the quality of life there. The zoning dictates the size of the houses and thus how many people can live in the dwellings. If a resident thinks a neighbor is violating the zoning laws, he or she can file a complaint with the local community board or with the city Department of Buildings. Comments (4).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Changing political winds will usher in de Blasio

Historians often point out that political movements work in cycles. After a few terms of Republican presidents, for example, we often see a shift to a Democratic president, like when Barack Obama followed George Bush Jr. and Bill Clinton defeated George Bush Sr., who succeeded Ronald Reagan. Comment.
Editorial

Struggle and Hope

It has been a year since Superstorm Sandy hurtled into Queens, leaving a scar on the Rockaway Peninsula and its neighbors on the nearby mainland. Other parts of Queens also felt the fury of the hurricane, but the coastal communities headed the borough’s casualty list both in terms of damage to property and human lives. Comment.
No Holds Barred

A Modest Proposal

Just before the Civil War began, if I am correct, Horace Greeley, the founder and editor of The New York Tribune and an outspoken anti-slavery advocate, wrote something along these lines. Comment.
Douglaston

Tip of the week

Letters

Class size problem needs answer

Recently, near the start of the school year, the United Federation of Teachers documented a huge number of illegally oversized classes. The city Department of Education insists this easily verifiable truth is inaccurate. Comments (1).
Letters

Do not give in to GOP demands

I think U.S. Rep. Marlon Stutzman (R-Ind.) exposed the truth behind the Republican Party’s opposition to Obamacare by saying, “We’re not going to be disrespected .... We have to get something out of this, and I don’t know what that even is.” Comments (5).
New Voices

Film documents students taking special high school test

With the Specialized High School Admission Test happening in a matter of weeks, parents of children across Queens are pushing to squeeze in last-minute test prep as well as motivate their children to do well on what is arguably the most important test they will take until the SAT. Comment.
Letters

Council beholden to rich interests over Willets

The 40-odd members of the City Council who approved the Willets Point plan were or should have been aware their vote did not make a significant change for the better the plan approved in 2008. Comment.
I Sit and Look Out

Children need exposure to the arts and culture while in school

It seems generally agreed that music and the arts in our schools have suffered from a lack of support for many years. Comments (2).
Letters

Tea Party makes Bush look good

I used to laugh at the “No-Bama” quip appearing on bumper tags, asking, “Miss Bush yet?” I would harken back to decisions made during that, period such as the unnecessary Iraq war, tax cuts for the wealthy and so on, not to mention Dr. Evil Cheney, which still leaves a sour taste merely recalling his being. Comments (4).
Political Action

Ragusa is re-elected chairman of Queens GOP

On Sept. 27, the Queens Republican Party held its convention to elect its county chairman and county officers. It is held every two years. Next year, the Queens Democratic Party will hold its convention for the same purpose. Comment.
Editorial

The Other Sex

Queens has been on the sidelines for over two weeks watching the theater of the absurd play out in Washington as GOP hardliners in the House of Representatives held the nation hostage. Comments (1).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Increase voter turnout with non-partisan elections

As the old saying goes, democracy is the second worst form of government — everything else is tied for first. Comments (1).
Letters

Obama, Congress must grow up

Since Congress cannot agree on anything, our government has now shut down. This is such a travesty because so many people are going to be affected by this in different ways, and not for the better. Comments (1).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Reform runoff elections to cut costs

The runoff election for city public advocate Oct. 1 drew only about 6.5 percent of registered Democrats citywide. The election cost about $13 million. This works out to about $70 for every vote cast. Comments (1).
Letters

BID’s Weekend Walk a success

The success of the Bayside Village Business Improvement District’s Weekend Walk was the result of the hard work of the merchants along Bell Boulevard and our partners in government. Comment.
QueensLine

Boro Germans in 1914 hoped the kaiser would win

Over summer 1914, Europe plunged into its first continent-wide war since the days of Napoleon. In the United States, public opinion was divided over the war. German and Irish Americans were the country’s two largest ethnic groups. Comment.
The Civic Scene

City should stop hurting small businesses with tickets

It seems that often our government and its agencies do the stupidest things, which eventually hurt the economy and the people they are supposed serve. Comment.
Editorial

DOE Needs Early Community Input

For decades, a 6-acre lot in Whitestone has sat vacant, but now education officials are considering the location as a spot to build a new high school. Comments (1).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Term limits bring fresh energy into politics

It’s an interesting quirk in the political world that some elected offices are term-limited while the vast majority are not. Comments (1).
Letters

Hold vote to end gov’t shutdown

There is a lot of blame and finger-pointing for the recent federal government shutdown. Today, I am offering a common-sense solution. Comment.
Letters

Republicans must stand up to Tea Party

If it wanted to, the Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives could immediately end the government shutdown it has caused. Comments (3).
Long Island City

Tip of the week

Letters

De Blasio has to do right by labor

Now is the only time in the modern history of organized labor in New York City that all members of every public employee union are forced to work under expired contracts. Comments (2).
Letters

Pay only for those cable channels you want to

Currently, I am paying for 600 cable channels even though I only watch five. During the recent cable blackout affecting Time Warner cable customers, I was only able to watch three. Simply put, this is an insane system that no rational human would have conceived. Comment.
New Voices

Boro’s Asian voters face snafus at polls in primary

The move to the legacy voting machines caused some chaos on Primary Day, with a number of the relics breaking down or otherwise malfunctioning. Compounding these issues were unclear directives on the use of paper ballots and at times confusing poll site instructions. Comments (2).
Whitestone

Congressional GOP is out of whack

I am truly amazed. How low can Republicans go? Thank goodness the GOP is here to cut billions from food stamps and fight for the right of wealthy Americans to buy a new yacht every year. Comments (6).
On Point

Martin Van Buren High School may get new lease on life

There may be light at the end of the tunnel for the nightmare faced by families zoned for Martin Van Buren High School in Queens Village. MVB evokes wonderful memories for its alumni, but while its former reputation as a community school with high graduation rates is well-known, it has since fallen on hard times and by any objective measure of success is a failed school. Comments (1).
Political Action

Despite losing Catsimatidis sees a future in politics

Gristedes billionaire John Catsimatidis plans to play a role in reorganizing the city’s Republican Party after losing his bid to win the GOP line in the September mayoral primary. Comments (2).
Editorial

Defending Hizzoner

It’s time to give Mayor Michael Bloomberg a break. Comments (1).
Letters

Gov’t shutdown unfair to workers

Members of Congress need to do what they were elected to do and pass a budget that allows the federal government to function. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

De Blasio could face major decisions on city schools

There are only three months left in the Bloomberg era, and the folks at the Tweed Building who work for the city Department of Education are probably dusting off their résumés and thinking about their next gig. Comment.
Letters

Ferreras should not support Willets plan changes

For too long there has been an unwritten law that in connection with legislation pending before the New York City Council, the Council member whose district encompasses the area on which there may be an impact has the say on whether the legislation should be enacted or rejected. Not only does this not comport with legitimate democratic processes, but it ignores the fact that a single Council member does not speak for all the residents of a district and ignores the fact there may be an impact upon an entire borough as well as the city. Comments (1).

September, 2013

Letters

Do not attack Miss America

As a member of Congress who represents a large population of Americans of Indian descent, I am troubled by the remarks aimed at the winner of the 2013 Miss America Pageant and a fellow New Yorker, Nina Davuluri. Comment.
Howard Beach

Vetro of Howard Beach reopens for business after Sandy

The wine cellar looked like an indoor pool. It was easy to imagine some bottles of the fine imported Italian vintages floating down Cross Bay Boulevard and into Jamaica Bay as the staff from Vetro restaurant waited on the rooftop for assistance in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy last year. Comment.
QueensLine

Queens’ Gorman made his name playing Lenny Bruce

Longtime New Yorkers should remember character actor Cliff Gorman for his breakthrough stage roles as Emory in “The Boys in the Band” and as Lenny Bruce in the eponymous “Lenny.” Comment.
Letters

Our children’s education is in crisis

There are many reasons why our education system is in crisis. Prospective educators are subjected to a trendy oppression-obsessed, feel-good and esteem-ridden curriculum with little emphasis on mastery of subject matter. Note some college courses offered to prospective educators: Social Diversity in Education, Oppression of the Disabled, Diversity and Change, Lesbian/Gay Oppression and Multicultural Education. Comments (4).
I Sit and Look Out

Next beep should take notes on Brooklyn’s Markowitz

Anthony Weiner is out. We really never thought, given the last few polls, that he was in, but one never knows. Since he served a part of Queens in the U.S. House of Representatives, I guess we have to remember him, but let us get over it quickly. Anthony will capitalize on his return to public life — note I did not write “public service”). In any event, he is living in Manhattan and, if we are lucky, he will not be in Queens anytime soon. Comments (1).
Editorial

Queens Booms With Construction

The magic number for Queens these days seems to be 24. In the last week, it was revealed that a new 24-story hotel is headed for downtown Jamaica while the owner of the Rego Park mall is moving ahead with plans to put 24 floors of apartments above the shopping mecca. Comments (1).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

De Blasio must choose great deputy mayors if he wins

Conventional wisdom is rarely correct in political campaigns, and early front-runners also don’t often make it first to the finish line. Just ask Hillary Clinton, Christine Quinn or Mark Green. Comment.
Letters

Say no to Willets shopping mall

There are many reasons for the City Council to reject the application of Sterling Equities and Related Cos., which seeks to amend the 2008 approved Willets Point plan. Comments (1).
Letters

Take hint from Far East airports

In view of the increased jet noise over the New York metro area, I thought your readers might be interested in how several large cities in Asia have dealt with this problem. Comments (1).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Council biased in favor of Willets development

A recent TimesLedger Newspapers article (“Parking permit is crux of Willets Point redux,” Sept. 6-12) mentions a public hearing held Sept. 3 by the City Council Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises. The article focussed on the developers’ decision to seek a special permit for parking at Willets Point, but omitted other newsworthy aspects of the hearing. Comment.
Letters

Curtail number of political fliers, calls

Over the last month I have received more than 100 fliers in the mail and what seemed like an equal number of calls regarding New York City primary elections. In the five mail delivery days before the primary, I counted 38 fliers, which I had saved for recycling. This does not take into account the endless TV commercials. Comments (1).
New Voices

Hindus clean up Rockaway sanctuary after water rites

Although Queens residents of all stripes are guilty of littering or dumping in Jamaica Bay, Hindu religious rites get some blame for some of the more visible debris. The Hindu rite of Ganga Pooja involves making an offering into a body of water as a way of cleansing one’s sins. Comments (2).
The Civic Scene

Council cares only for Flushing Meadows development

Decades ago, when I became involved with civic work, there seemed to be the philosophy that parkland was a sacred trust held for the use of the people of a community. Now it seems the city is willing to give away parkland to private developers in the name of economic development. Comment.
Political Action

Boro Dems have avoided internal strife seen in GOP

Every two years, major and minor political parties focus on county conventions for the purpose of electing county officers to run the county party during the next two-year period. Comment.
Editorial

Transit Triumphs

Queens is finally coming up on the MTA’s radar. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Third term curse first haunted Koch, now Bloomberg

Back in 1987, more than a quarter century ago, an outspoken and opinionated third-term mayor was not only wearing out his welcome, but also evoking the ire of African Americans. Comment.
Letters

Always remember events of 9/11

Why are certain events of our national history remembered, honored, grieved over or occasions for celebration? Of course, certain events have had such an impact upon the American psyche that it would seem impossible to forget or overlook. Dec. 7, “a day which will live in infamy”; D-Day; Thanksgiving; and Halloween are all part of the American calendar. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

U.S. must not go to war with Syria

All polls indicate that the vast majority of the American people oppose intervention in Syria’s civil war. If we were a true democracy, Congress would vote no on war with Syria and not be swayed by warmongers. Comment.
Letters

Use money to prevent another Sandy

The presidential task force has strongly suggested that much needs to be done in order to protect our coastlines from more intense and frequent storms, which will bring as much destruction as Hurricane Sandy did. Comment.
No Holds Barred

Why can’t New York City kids master the English language?

There has been more and more discussion recently about the sad state of English usage by American students. This apparently is not just a matter of elementary, middle or high schools. Students are entering college without the necessary tools to handle the language. Comments (12).
Letters

Quality of music has decreased

Music reflects our values, uplifts, inspires and reveals our dreams and aspirations. Some composers and artists, however, no longer idolize the beautiful and elegant but glorify the coarse and vulgar. Comments (1).
QueensLine

Astoria, Howard Beach besot by drag racing in 1958

It was 1958 and we called it “The Golden Age of Television.” At 6:30 p.m. on Channel 4, you had the news with Gabe Pressman. At 7 p.m., one could either watch the evening news with Robert Trout or sports with Howard Cosell. At 7:15 p.m. ran “World News with Douglas Edwards.” Comments (1).
Letters

SJU pupils need to respect area

Years ago, when St. John’s University decided to build dormitories in an already-crowded neighborhood, many of us warned that this would result in our streets being inundated with hundreds of drunken students. That prediction has sadly come to pass many times over, with loud, disruptive and sometimes destructive behavior. Comment.
The Civic Scene

Students must be taught new standards before being tested

The new Common Core standards were tested in New York state, although teachers had not been given the curriculum and students had not been taught the material. Common Core is the latest in a series of philosophies designed to raise the knowledge of students and their ability to function in our modern hi-tech world and be prepared for college. Comments (2).
Editorial

Council Races Get Special Interest

Races for Queens City Council seats should be home-grown affairs with candidates taking positions on neighborhood issues that have divided some residents and united others, but in the 2013 primary outside influences in the form of big bucks have been injected into the contests for Council spots in several communities. Comments (4).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Voters now have choice between populism, biz interests

It is Sept. 11 as I write this, and I can glimpse the new World Trade Center towers from my office window. Comment.
I Sit and Look Out

Baseball players have lost their heroic luster over time

Once upon a time, baseball was known as the “national pastime” and its players were heroes. They were looked up to as paragons of what a person should be — talented, humble (for the most part) and one with the nation in which they played. Comment.
Letters

Respect city workers who build infrastructure

Not only around Labor Day, but all year round, as we marvel at the infrastructure of this city, we should salute the workers who rendered these architectural and engineering dreams a reality. Comments (1).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Staff unhelpful at boro pols’ offices

I have reached my breaking point with the lack of help coming from our elected officials at state Sen. Jose Peralta’s (D-East Elmhurst) and City Councilman Daniel Dromm’s (D-Jackson Heights) offices and how they have the most incompetent workers our tax dollars pay for. Comment.
New Voices

Boro group seeks to register Indo-Caribbeans for primary

Growing voter participation in Queens’ immigrant communities has left indelible stamps on the political processes in the borough. While most issues that affect these voters span racial and ethnic lines, a lack of participation by these voters has made many borough races non-competitive and residents feeling left out of the political process. Comments (1).
Political Action

Catsimatidis backs vocational schools and stop-frisk

John Catsimatidis is running strongly in the Republican primary election, to be held Sept. 10. He has been endorsed by former Republican Gov. George Pataki. His main opponent in that race is Joe Lhota, a former deputy mayor. Comment.
Letters

Teens at gas station a nuisance

I am a Clearview Gardens resident and was interested in either writing an article about, or having one written about the gas station at 17-55 Francis Lewis Blvd. Comments (57).
On Point

Condo, co-op owners should vote for who will care for them

Next week, Democrats and Republicans will select their parties’ candidate for November’s mayoral election. Having attended numerous candidate forums in the past few months, a reality check taken with a dose of truth serum is in order by the contenders, as they purport to solve many serious problems confronting our city. Comment.
Editorial

Get Out and Vote

Next Tuesday voters from Queens will go to the polls to choose candidates in primaries for citywide offices as well as borough president and the City Council. This is a year when every vote counts and a low turnout will allow a small portion of the electorate to decide who runs City Hall and other major posts for the next four years. Comment.
Letters

Willets Point plan nothing but same old politics

The Willets Point plan approved in 2008 was clear and unambiguous. The city would acquire 62 acres in Willets Point through the voluntary sale by property owners or, if need be, through eminent domain. A private developer would construct on the site upscale retail stores, office buildings, a convention center, a school and luxury housing with a portion set aside for affordable housing. Comments (1).
Letters

Lainos right in suing Parks

The news that the family of Tony Laino, who was killed when a tree fell on his house in Flushing, has filed a lawsuit through their attorney is good to hear. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Make endorsements part of decision-making in primary

When I was the publisher of a chain of weekly newspapers, each year around this time numerous political candidates came to our office for their endorsement interviews. Comment.
Letters

Electeds should rethink candidate they support

During the course of the District 19 Council race, Jobs for New York has sent a series of “hit pieces” against three of the candidates for the benefit of Paul Vallone. The mailers are paid for by Jobs for New York, and upon information and belief were designed, printed and dist Comments (6).
Letters

Pols should only serve the public

In reference to the Aug. 2-8 Bayside Times letter “Give pols more than one salary,” those who are financially successful in the private sector should not be seeking elected public office with the objective of gaining additional salaries, lucrative pensions and the perks that come with such positions. Comments (1).
Letters

Teachers need a contract now

As the new school year nears, the teachers of our public school system still do not have a new, fair and affordable contract. Comments (1).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Donate blood, save three lives

For the past three years, I have had the privilege of organizing blood drives for City Council District 19, covering northeast Queens from College Point to Little Neck. Comment.
Letters

Blame mayoral control for bad teachers

Do not blame public school teachers for the drop in test scores. They have no control over curriculum and education policy. Almost every detail of their professional experiences is dictated to them. Comments (2).
Letters

It’s time to legalize marijuana

It is time to recognize that New York City’s misguided war on marijuana has failed. Instead of spending millions on low-level drug prosecutions that disproportionately affect minorities, why not legalize, regulate and tax the city’s $1.65 billion marijuana market? Comments (5).

August, 2013

Editorial

Council Deals Blow to Mayor Bloomberg

After an emotionally charged session at City Hall last week, the City Council voted to override Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s vetoes of two bills designed to rein in the NYPD’s use of stop-and-frisk. Comment.
On Point

Speed cameras feed Gotham’s revenue addiction

It was not long ago when red light cameras were introduced as a life-saving program that would get reckless drivers off the road. We were told they were being installed for safety and not for revenue. Comments (20).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

The 2013 election season still has a way to go before it ends

While many insiders think there’s three weeks left until we pick a new mayor, city comptroller, city public advocate, as well as two borough presidents, a district attorney and a new City Council — an unprecedented turnover in municipal government — it is just the second half of a long marathon that won’t conclude until six months from now, in early 2014. Comment.
Letters

CD 19 has weak candidates

It is sad to see the lineup for the 19th City Council District race this year. Comments (9).
Letters

Treat people and cops fairly

Now that a judge has ruled that stop-and-frisk needs to be amended, what will be next? Comment.
Letters

New York needs renewable energy now

For the past few years, it seems New Yorkers have been dealing with one weather-related disaster after another. We have seen heat waves and flooding, and you do not need to tell New Yorkers about hurricanes and tropical storms. Comment.
Letters

City needs speed cameras

Is columnist Bob Friedrich so cynical of government as to deny the practical benefits of speed cameras (“Speed cameras feed Gotham’s revenue addiction,” Aug. 2-8)? Comment.
New Voices

Elmhurst group helps South Asians get ready for college

Many immigrant families face anxiety when preparing their children for college. Some families, which have children who will be the first in their family to pursue higher education, are woefully unaware of the process. Comment.
Letters

Return Auburndale’s PS 130 to District 26

The city School Construction Authority says that if residents do not want a new elementary school on the Keil Bros. property in Bayside, an alternate site should be recommended. Comments (1).
QueensLine

Queens residents torn over Kinsey report in August ‘53

In August 1953, the Korean War truce was signed. Just returned to stateside, Airman First Class Raymond W. King, of Astoria, received the Distinguished Flying Cross for meritorious service over North Korea. As a flight engineer on a B-26 bomber, King was taking part in a reconnaissance mission the previous year when his crew spotted a convoy and destroyed 22 enemy vehicles. Comment.
Editorial

Queens Hospitals on Life Support

Queens is on the brink of a health care crisis that will only become more dire if two more borough facilities close. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Education reforms little more than the latest fads

New York City’s education system, like the rest of America’s, has been hijacked by politicians who are eager to tout their success at making much-needed gains. Comments (1).
Letters

Reforming stop-and-frisk will lessen gun violence

In 2003, my childhood friend was a victim of gun violence, murdered in front of his home in South Jamaica. It was an event that changed my life and led to my involvement in government. Comments (4).
Letters

Do not trust lying politicians

Why does reader Roseanne D’Angelo support lying, adultery and stealing? Comment.
The Civic Scene

Complaints over airplane noise not a new phenomenon

There are scores of stories about airplane noise in northeast Queens in the newspapers these days. It is an annoyance, but if one lives in a modern city near two major airports, there has to be some noise. The question is how much noise and at what hours. Comments (5).
Forest Hills

Tip of the week

Flushing

Tip of the week

Letters

City must inspect trees in parks for safety

The news about a pregnant woman who was struck and killed by a falling tree in Kissena Park is another tragic wake-up call for the city Parks Department to inspect every tree in every park, playground and street. Comment.
Letters

Keep rowdy youth out of the Olde Flushing site

I hope you received my July 2 letter regarding the Olde Towne of Flushing Burial Ground, on 46th Avenue between 164th and 165th streets in Flushing. The conservancy, of which I am a co-chair, is looking forward to your visit to the site in the near future. Comment.
I Sit and Look Out

Spitzer and Weiner have gall to seek redemption

Redemption is a word and an attitude which seems to be getting a great deal of attention these days. Whether this means anything is another matter. Comments (6).
Political Action

Every precaution must be taken when counting ballots

In the 1930s and ’40s, voting machines came into use in most American cities. The era of paper ballots was over and the possibility of voter fraud was lessened, but there are always some people who will try to beat the system. Comment.
Editorial

Judge Delivers Blow to Stop-and-Frisk

A Manhattan federal judge’s ruling that the city’s stop-and-frisk policy is unconstitutional sent a message to black and Hispanic residents in Queens that their civil rights were protected. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Media should pay attention to politics, not sexual transgressions

It’s hard enough braving the wilting summer heat and standing at subway stations each morning shaking hands and passing out fliers. Then there are the endless public events and candidate forums that occupy every waking moment — when you’re not on the phone with potential donors pleading for money. Comment.
Letters

Stroll in park becomes hassle

It appears that the city Parks Department has not only neglected Flushing Meadows Corona Park, which has been reported to two commissioners for decades, but it is neglecting to accommodate the people trying to get into and use Fort Totten Park. Comment.
No Holds Barred

The Greatest Threat to America Today

Constitution Day is Sept. 17, a Tuesday. If the past is any indication, the observance will be very limited indeed. I commented about that in a column last year. Comments (3).
Letters

Know the facts of Trayvon case

People blame Trayvon Martin for sucker-punching George Zimmerman. Here are some facts these ignorant fools continue to ignore. Comments (17).
Long Island City

Tip of the week

Letters

City must reject plan for mall at Willets Point

In 2008, the Bloomberg administration declared 62 acres of property in Flushing to the east of Citi Field called Willets Point, on which there were more than 200 small auto businesses as well as others, a blight. Comments (1).
New Voices

Queens group seeks to help people outside Guyana

The recently formed group West Indians Serving Humanity has bold plans to aid underprivileged children through tapping the large West Indian community in Queens. I spoke with WISH group members Safraz Deen and Deven Dindiyal on their experiences, aspirations for their group and the charitable spirit they have discovered in borough residents. Comment.
Letters

Don’t unnecessarily rename bridges

In regards to the July 19-25 article “Vallone bill to reverse Ed Koch bridge naming,” I applaud City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr.’s (D-Astoria) sensibilities in bringing this up. Comments (2).
QueensLine

Debi Mazar, known for playing Jersey Girls, hails from Jamaica

Mae West once said, “Personality is the most important thing to an actress’s success.” Seemingly having followed this advice, movie and television actress Debi Mazar (b. 1964) has cultivated a specific persona — that of the sassy, Italian Jersey Girl. Comment.
Letters

McCaffrey stood up for rights of outerboros

The late City Councilman Walter McCaffrey is now officially free from the scourge of term limits. How ironic that he was one of the first victims of term limits, which is nothing more — politically speaking — than the voters’ expression of a preference for a one-night stand. Comment.
Editorial

Parks Has a Problem with Trees

The death of a young pregnant woman who was crushed by a giant oak that toppled onto the bench where she was sitting in Kissena Park Sunday might have been avoided. The city Parks Department has been under pressure from legislators in Queens in recent years to accelerate its inspection and maintenance of borough trees. Comments (1).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

2013 race for mayor feels like repeat of contest from ‘77

Like the old saying goes: “Those who do not understand history are destined to repeat it.” Comments (1).
Letters

Tow truck causes hassle in parking lot

I read an article last October regarding the parking lot at the intersection of Northern and Bell boulevards servicing CVS and Party City. While I realize there is a potential problem with cars parking there illegally to patronize food carts or other establishments, what I witnessed the night of July 20 is a greater problem. Comment.
Letters

Give pols more than one salary

One could almost hear the resentment and outrage springing from the page that an elected state official is earning a six-figure salary from their outside job in addition to what they are paid for by serving their constituents. Comment.
Letters

Parks needs to take care of trees

With all the rainfall this area has experienced, there is the risk of trees snapping or falling due to the enormous amount of water their root and trunk systems have absorbed. Comments (1).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Houses go to people, not churches

I am getting tired of no one addressing the issue of all these churches popping up all of a sudden. I have lived in Bayside for 30 years and I think we should have housing around here, not more churches. Comments (8).
The Civic Scene

Don’t be taken in by burglars posing as utility workers

The June 2013 Holliswood Civic Association Newsletter contained a security report by member Kurt Hoppe. He warns members that there seems to be three or four groups of burglars breaking into homes in Fresh Meadows, Jamaica Estates and Holliswood. Comment.
Letters

Come clean on stop-frisk bills

City Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens) wrote a letter in the July 19-25 edition of TimesLedger Newspapers defending his vote for the two Intros 1079 and 1080, comprising the Community Safety Act. Comments (3).
Editorial

Third Time Isn’t The Charm

Queens is the borough of second chances, where people flock from around the world to start their lives over. But what about native sons — or near-natives from Brooklyn — who promise their constituents they have mended their ways only to squander the shot they were given at public redemption? Comment.
Letters

Big Pharma will cash in on obesity

The big pharmaceutical companies must be ecstatic now that the American Medical Association has declared obesity a disease. Comments (1).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Two polar political opposites want to be city comptroller

Most New Yorkers don’t know what the city comptroller does, much less be able to spell the archaic title. Comment.
Letters

CB 11 deserves say on school site

On July 17, the Community Board 11 staff read, in the City Record, that the City Council Subcommittee on Landmarks, Public Siting and Maritime Uses was, much to our surprise, holding the hearing July 22 for the location of the 416-seat elementary school in Bayside. Comment.
Political Action

Political clubs perform essential county functions

The political party operates at many levels. Here in New York City, the parties have county organizations with officers and an executive committee composed mainly of district leaders. Comment.

July, 2013

Letters

Council legislation protects people from cops

Bob Friedrich’s July 12-18 column criticizing the Community Safety Act was misleading and inflammatory. Comments (6).
Ridgewood

Visit Ho Chi Min City by way of Ridgewood, Queens

We would be hard-pressed to find a more unlikely or inhospitable spot to open an eatery than the stretch of Metropolitan Avenue, near Queen’s western frontier, where Bunker has hunkered down. It’s across from a junk yard and next to a sewage treatment plant. Yet inaccessibility may actually work in Bunker’s favor. Comment.
Letters

Turn Shops at Atlas Park into community center

The Shops at Atlas Park mall have not received an auspicious beginning. Almost from the time they opened their doors, the local media started adopting a bipolar attitude. Comments (2).
New Voices

Workers in South Asian community hit hard by recession

Though most Queens residents have felt the impact of the recession, not all are affected equally. The South Asian community, especially new immigrants, have not fared well in this economic climate. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Councilmen wrong on effectiveness of safety law

In their letters to the editor, City Councilmen Jumaane Williams (D-Brooklyn) and Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens) make a valiant effort trying to spin the Community Safety Act as measures that will not jeopardize public safety. Comments (1).
I Sit and Look Out

Sports more concerned with business, not competition

For many years, I used to say I had two forms of exercise: walking and jumping to conclusions. Comment.
QueensLine

S. Jamaica’s 50 Cent made his name as rapper, actor

During an almost 20-year career as a recording artist in rap music, Curtis Jackson III, a native of South Jamaica, has been better known by his stage name: 50 Cent. Comments (1).
Editorial

Light at the Subway Tunnel’s End

Queens, the stepchild of the city transit system, is finally getting attention from the powers-that-be at the MTA and the governor. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Columnist gives Bloomberg passing grade as mayor

OK, class. It’s near the end of 12 years of school (in this case, City Hall High), and now it’s time for you to graduate and receive your final grades. Comments (3).
Letters

Hurricane pattern could return

Summer 2013 continues to bring an assortment of wild, dangerous and volatile weather. Comment.
Letters

Gay opponents need to change tune

I hear some people say they do not support anyone being gay or gay marriage. They call gays deviants and say homosexuality is wrong, immoral and not what God intended. It upsets them that in this politically correct world they cannot do this and cannot say that. Comments (7).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Friedrich is wrong on NYPD act

Bob Friedrich’s July 13 column “Two Council bills will hinder the effectiveness of NYPD” is inaccurate. Friedrich misrepresents the bills that comprise the Community Safety Act (Intros 1079 and 1080), but whether out of ignorance or an attempt to mislead readers, we do not know. Comments (2).
Political Action

District leaders play an important role in shaping policy

In New York City politics, the state Assembly district seems to be the key element on which much of the local political organization is based. The importance of the Assembly district leader comes into being in the 1870s, especially in Manhattan with the citywide Democratic Party. Comments (1).
Letters

Americans need to wake up on pipeline

Interesting. Here in the United States, we still have average citizens rooting for the Keystone XL pipeline carrying the Canadian tar sands oil from Alberta to refineries in Texas, thinking it will in some way make our country oil independent and make gas prices lower. Comments (3).
Editorial

A Tragic Case

The Florida jury’s decision to acquit George Zimmerman in the shooting death of unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin reverberated through Queens and the rest of the city, where calls were issued to dismantle “shoot first” laws. Comments (5).
The Civic Scene

Common Core standards will do more harm than good

Hurricane Sandy devastated whole communities throughout New York City. Schools in these areas that were not damaged became community centers for people displaced by the storm. Even today, some homes have not been rebuilt. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Columnist ponders if Twitter controversy was all strategy

Imagine that for more than a decade you’ve been plotting to become mayor of New York City and you have been blocked from that path by the wealthiest man in town. Comment.
Letters

Weprin explains why he voted for stop-frisk bills

There has recently been a great deal of heated discussion about the two bills that comprise the Community Safety Act — Intros 1079 and 1080 — which the City Council passed in late June. New Yorkers have been receiving some false information on these bills, so the time has come to calm down and look at the facts. Comments (1).
Letters

Pols and staffs should not be secretive

I called my city councilman, Peter Koo (D-Flushing), in June. I wanted to know if he voted for or against the two community safety bills that were passed. Comment.
Letters

Sign up for 9/11 health funds

The terrorist attacks of Sept. 11 affected all of us, but survivors and the brave first responders, many of whom risked everything to provide emergency aid, have suffered incomparable health problems and financial loss in the years following this tragedy. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

New Voices

S. Asians, Indo-Caribbeans convene to bolster community

Two weeks ago, South Asian and Indo-Caribbean activists met in South Ozone Park to discuss a wide range of topics pertinent to the Indo-Caribbean community at the first Indo-Caribbean Convene, a space provided for activists and community leaders from Queens to discuss matters of faith, culture, justice and community. Comment.
Letters

Do not curtail stop-and-frisk

The City Council’s passage in June of the inaptly named Community Safety Act is a reckless action which will handcuff the police, lead to more drugs and guns on our streets and victimize the poor and minority citizens the Council claims to protect. Comment.
QueensLine

Little green men visited Queens in summer of 1952

The year 1952 will be remembered as the summer of UFOs on the East Coast. Since the 1947 sightings of unidentified flying objects over Roswell, N.M., Americans from various parts of the country had been reporting seeing strange phenomena in the night skies. Comment.
Letters

Parks must clean up Olde Towne burial ground

The Olde Towne of Flushing Burial Ground is in Flushing on 46th Avenue between 164th and 165th streets. It is a 19th-century cemetery where approximately 1,000 souls rest. Many of the dead are children, victims of epidemics. Most of the interred are African Americans or indigenous Americans. Comment.
On Point

Two Council bills will hinder effectiveness of NYPD

I don’t care to go back to the bad old days of New York City, when crime was rampant, city streets were filled with folks thinking it was acceptable to sleep on sidewalks, squeegee men assaulted drivers stopped at red lights and our town was headed down a long spiral of despair. The City Council’s short memory is about to drag us back to those days with the passage of Intro 1079 and 1080, which end stop-and-frisk and creates an NYPD inspector general. Comment.
Editorial

Meter Madness

Queens has a starring role in the Muni-Meter meltdown bedeviling the city. There is a constant stream of complaints to community boards across the borough from motorists trying to appease the temperamental meters so they can perform simple tasks such as buying a newspaper or having a cup of coffee. Comments (2).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Do not underestimate underdog mayoral candidates

I was so often labeled an underdog by the media when I ran for mayor last year that I jokingly told my friends I was thinking of changing my first name to “Longshot.” Comment.
Letters

Court made wrong marriage decision

The U.S. Supreme Court’ ruling on gay marriage will cause more harm than good. The court has destroyed and robbed the foundation of traditional marriage and has single-handedly destroyed society as we know it. Comments (4).
Letters

Religion impedes rights for gays

If people say they support civil unions and equal rights for gays but feel that the “sacrament” of marriage should be between a man and a woman, then by excluding gays from marriage they show that they are not for equal rights for gays. Comment.
Political Action

Petition drives make or break a politician’s candidacy

The election campaigns every year in New York state and especially in New York City have two parts. The first is having designating petitions circulated with the candidates’ names on them. Each political party listed on the ballot goes through the petition process. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Stop-and-frisk helps keep city safe from crime

The recent attacks on stop-and-frisk, a constitutional tool employed by the city Police Department, are outrageous. This program, instituted in under Police Commissioner William Bratton and Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, has helped bring down major crime rates in the city to an all-time low, to the levels seen in the 1950s. Comment.
I Sit and Look Out

Empire State Building has been a beacon for columnist

The Empire State Building has been part of my life, it seems, forever. When a large structure to go up some blocks west of it was approved not long ago, which will block the view of it from some angles, it brought back memories. Comment.
Letters

Do not blame birds for plane collisions

The recent near collision of two passenger jets over New York City is once again proof that there are more near-collisions between planes due to pilot and control tower error. Comments (2).
The Civic Scene

Queens high school students win many awards, scholarships

With the ending of the 2012-13 school year, it is time to recount some of the good things going on in our Queens high schools. Comment.
Editorial

Supreme Disappointment

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to eviscerate the 1965 Voting Rights Act sent a chill through Queens, which has become a beacon for people from all over the world seeking equality. Comments (2).
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Not all black voters may have their eye on Thompson

Identity politics is an age-old term for voters picking one of their own. Up until the 1940s, the Irish largely dominated New York politics and ticket balancing meant having one Irish candidate, one Italian candidate and one Jewish candidate on the same slate to appeal to the dominant ethnic groups in the city. Comment.
Letters

Smoke-free homes good for boro

In June, the Related Cos. pledged that all of its 40,000 housing units across many states will be smoke-free. Related Cos. has been chosen as a developer for housing units at the Hunter’s Point South Development in Long Island City. Comment.
Letters

Be safe during hurricane season

The recent outlook from the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for this upcoming hurricane season is, once again, predicting above-normal storm activity, with close to 18 storms between June 1 and Nov. 30. Comment.
No Holds Barred

It’s time to support our troops

Very early on in our disastrous intrusions in Afghanistan and Iraq, I began to do two things, both related to the effect of these wars on Queens. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Sandy cannot keep libraries down

It has been several months since Superstorm Sandy. Queens Library has been working hard to help the community rebuild while continuing to provide the educational and informational support patrons value. Comment.

June, 2013

QueensLine

‘Little Prairie’ star Michael Landon born in Forest Hills

For more than 30 years, Queens native Michael Landon entertained American television audiences with family-friendly shows such as “Bonanza,” “Little House on the Prairie” and “Highway to Heaven.” Comments (2).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

China treated Iraq better than U.S.

After the end of the war in Iraq, where thousands of Americans died, hundreds of thousands were injured and $9 billion in cash — shipped on wooden pallets — literally disappeared. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Next mayor needs to have experience in management

New York has had its share of crises in the past decade: Sept. 11, the Great Recession and Hurricane Sandy. Who leads the city during times of crisis — and relative calm — is important and that person’s ability and experience as a manager and leader is paramount. Comment.
Editorial

Grad Rates Still Lag

Queens got its annual report card and a passing grade last week on the number of students graduating from high school after four years, which was achieved despite tougher Regents exams. Comment.
Letters

Revolution had other inspirations

In regard to the historical basis of American anti-Catholicism, one must analyze the Declaration of Independence’s assertion that King George III (1738-1820), “the present king of Great Britain ... has combined with others [the British Parliament] ... giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation for ... abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring province, establishing therein an arbitrary government.” Comment.
Letters

Change voting system to make it easier

Democracy is priceless, but elections are expensive. New York City can save $20 million by moving from our two-round runoff system for citywide races to Instant Runoff Voting. Comments (1).
Letters

Con Ed must carefully prune trees

The tree manglers hired by Con Edison to “trim” trees near overhead power lines have struck again. Trees are being mutilated and disfigured by the manglers cutting the centers out of trees or taking off the branches on one side of certain trees. Comments (1).
Letters

FMCP needs no soccer stadium

Flushing Meadows Corona Park is important to the people of Queens. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

City can treat unkempt land better

The issue of unkempt properties has plagued our communities since the housing bust. Presently, the city Sanitation Department can go on properties and clean them once they have been given a particular status. While I am pleased with this change in regulations, more needs to be done. Comment.
Political Action

Blishteyn backs trade schools, vouchers in race for City Council

New York City in past decades has been the place where new political and social ideas have emerged. Queens Republican Chairman Phil Ragusa recently commented on some of these recent issues. He is strongly opposed to efforts being made by liberal spokesmen to grant voting rights to non-citizens. Comment.
Letters

Herbalife targets Latinos: Pol

I am writing to urge the FTC to take a look into Herbalife. Herbalife has been accused of operating an abusive pyramid scheme that targets minority groups, especially Latinos, by falsely promising large profits. As a New York City Council member in a heavily Hispanic district in Queens, I am concerned about the impact this company is having on my constituents and the Latino community in New York. Comments (7).
Editorial

Surviving the Storm

FEMA has released a revised version of the latest flood maps that put much of Queens’ waterfront property into high-risk zones for the first time in 30 years in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Comment.
The Civic Scene

DOB must do better job of cracking down on illegal apts.

For decades Queens civic associations have fought to preserve their quality of life by improving the enforcement of the zoning laws. People bought their homes or rented their apartments because of the ambiance in a community. When the zoning laws are violated and large, illegal buildings are built or illegal conversions take place, then more people are added to a neighborhood zoned for fewer people. Comments (1).
Letters

Racino leaves area biz in the lurch

In April 2013, I was in the area of Rockaway Boulevard, a neighborhood street just outside the gates of Aqueduct Racetrack and the racino. There were at least a half-dozen enormous restaurants with about 40 tables each and a dozen more smaller dining places along Rockaway Boulevard in back of the racino gates. The same went for nearby Lefferts Boulevard. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Democrats have no real plan to tackle union back pay

One of the reasons New York has had Republican mayors for the last 20 years is because the city’s public- and private-sector unions have not rallied behind the same candidate during Democratic primaries. Comment.
Letters

Ban fruit-flavored liquors in N.Y.

I am writing to urge all honorable legislators in New York City and the state to propose a bill which would make illegal the manufacture, distribution and sale of any liquors which are deceptively advertised as soft drinks or flavored with fruit juices. Comment.
Letters

Disapproval vote has more weight in Willets Pt. plan

Please consider this letter as a supplement to my remarks before you on June 6 concerning the Willets Point application. I am placing on the record what I believe is a misconception about what is relevant in your decision process. You appear to believe the 22-18 Community Board 7 vote is relevant, but not the negative CB 3 vote of 30-1 with one abstention. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

MTA needs to communicate better

Queens has a major problem. Comment.
QueensLine

Quakers protest germ weapons in Flushing during 1960

Relations between the United States and Cuba were very strained. On July 6, 1960, President Dwight Eisenhower slashed the Cuban sugar quota by 700,000 tons, virtually eliminating it, and sending Fidel Castro into a rage. Comment.
Letters

Sequester hurts gov’t workers

I am a member of the American Federation of Government Employees and a hardworking federal employee at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in New York City. I work on a daily basis as a compliance specialist protecting the public from violations of environmental law. Comments (2).
I Sit and Look Out

Political scandals make even good electeds look bad

Not long after my family moved from Borough Park, Brooklyn, into our attached bungalow home on 57th Avenue in Elmhurst, I learned Queens was frequently referred to as the “Forgotten Borough.” To most New Yorkers, we were in that place somewhere east of Manhattan and north of Brooklyn and we did not count for much. Comment.
Editorial

Give Queens a Place at the Table

Queens and the other outerboroughs are being pushed to the back of the room again as another Manhattan-centric group sets the agenda. This time it’s the city Rent Guidelines Board, which recently proposed steep rent hikes for stabilized apartments around the city. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Mayoral hopefuls have homework to do on edu. policies

A wise, upper-middle-class friend told me her children will not inherit anything because their private school and college tuitions gobbled it all up. Let’s face it: We have a public education crisis of epic proportions. Comment.
Letters

We need water, not tar sand oil

There is positive and negative talk relative to the XL Keystone Pipeline. It is planned to pump crude tar sand oil from Canada across the United States to Texas, where it would be distilled and sold overseas. Comment.
Letters

MTA must improve Rockaway bus service

I wish I did not have to write this letter, but the Metropolitan Transportation Authority monopoly failed the public trust once again. Comment.
Political Action

Expect a showdown over religious group meets in public schools

Since Mayor Michael Bloomberg began his administration in 2002, he has been trying to keep religious groups from renting public school properties for Sunday services. Recently, the City Council passed a resolution giving religious institutions permission to use school property for religious services. The vote was 38-11 against the mayor’s position and in favor of the religious groups. Comments (2).
Letters

Buses in Rockaway too crowded

My name is Jerome D. Reyes and I have lived in the Rockaways for 10 years. I have three sons and a caring woman at home. It was never my intention to move to Rockaway, but after I saw the beach I fell in love with It. My son just turned 8 and the ocean and the beach is all he wants. Comment.
Letters

Treat all law breakers the same

Our laws are meant to stop people from doing unlawful things and penalize those who disregard them. Our immigration laws, however, are different because their focus is not on the transgression but on the plight of those who have broken the laws and what can be done to lift the stigma they feel so they can normalize their lives. Comments (3).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Parks needs to deal with beetle

The Asian longhorn beetle threatens our trees yet the city Parks Department refuses to pick up potentially infested wood. Comments (1).
The Civic Scene

Autism group holds first meeting in Cunningham Park

Victoria Valdes and her fiance Aaron Eason were devastated, confused and frustrated when they discovered four years ago that their 2-year-old son, Joseph Valdes, had autism. Out of a desire to do something, they created a foundation called I Am Not My Autism. Look carefully at the name and understand what they are saying. Comment.
Letters

Do not stress pupils with tests

There must be no more additional state testing mandated for our students. What there must be is more teaching of subject matter so students can learn in classrooms and not be so overwhelmed with preparing for state tests. Comment.
On Point

Queens civic associations speak out against actions of Silver

Eight months ago, six civic association leaders under the umbrella of Queens Civics United took a bold step on behalf of the communities they represent. They issued a press release to the media calling for state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) to be relieved of his role. Comment.
Editorial

The A Train Rocks Again

Seven months after Hurricane Sandy slammed into New York City and delivered the most crippling blow in the MTA’s history to the subway system, the A train resumed service between Howard Beach and the Rockaways last week. Comment.
Mayoral Spin Cycle

Mayoral Spin Cycle: Democrats in mayoral race need to focus on city safety

Now that the third ring of the circus is complete with the arrival of Anthony Weiner’s high-wire act to the mayoral race, perhaps we can try to take a sober look at why this election really matters for our city’s future. Comment.
Letters

Return PS 130 to District 26

PS 130, at 200-01 42nd Ave. in Bayside, currently mainly serves District 25 students. The school, however, is geographically in District 26 and historically was a K-6 and K-8 school for students living on the Auburndale-Bayside border. Comment.
Letters

Take precautions while online

In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings, we are reminded of the importance of re-evaluating our security procedures, but we also must be conscious of another challenge: the threat to our personal information from cyber attacks. Comment.
Letters

Fix buses in the Rockaways

I was waiting for a bus Thursday, May 9, at Liberty Avenue going southbound towards Rockaway at 8:58 am. Comments (1).
Letters

We must be better prepared for disasters

Our planet’s climate is changing. The impact on our daily weather has been extreme. Look at the tornado that hit northeast Queens, Hurricane Sandy, the amount and severity of recent tornados in Oklahoma and other parts of our country, serious drought in some areas like Mississippi, huge snowfalls in other states and gale force winds causing fires to spread. Comment.
Editorial

Queens Needs Greenmarkets

Hunger is a daunting and sometimes invisible problem in Queens. Even in some of the borough’s more affluent neighborhoods, working couples and single mothers struggle to feed their families — another statistic among the data showing that one in six Americans suffers from what the government calls “food insufficiency.” Comment.
Letters

Left-wing right on guns, gov’t

A short while ago, the Vatican agreed with President Barack Obama concerning the need for gun control. Recently, West Point did an in-depth study on conservatives and liberals. Comments (23).

May, 2013

Letters

Expand tennis stadium for pupils

The United States Tennis Association’s Billie Jean King National Tennis Center is our home court, and for the players on our men’s and women’s teams there is no greater thrill than playing on the same courts where the top tennis stars compete in the renowned US Open every summer. Comment.
Murray Hill

Head up to Murray Hill for Korean-style BBQ pork

When we invited our friends to dine with us at a Korean restaurant in Murray Hill, they wondered when Manhattan became our beat. Of course, we didn’t mean that Murray Hill. The one we were talking about is a section of Flushing that extends approximately from Union Street to Francis Lewis Boulevard for several blocks north and south of Northern Boulevard. Comment.
QueensLine

Baysider went to Nevada to test atomic weapons in 1952

Supporting a bid to stem juvenile delinquency in May 1952, Queens District Attorney T. Vincent Quinn hailed a court decision upholding a ban on certain publications as a “timely and powerful aid” to end the sale of “objectionable literature” at local newsstands. Comment.
Letters

Reactivate Rockaway Beach line for good of Queens

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has not provided enough buses for commuters. They have ignored our requests for more buses, longer buses, more express buses and 24-hour service for the Q52 and Q53. Some 35,000 Queens commuters have been affected by the loss of the A train. Thousands more have to cope with the overcrowding on buses due to this displacement. We need more regularly scheduled buses, not random, haphazard and inadequate service. Comments (4).
Forest Hills

Tip of the week

Letters

Soccer stadium to steal people’s park

A Major Soccer League stadium in Flushing Meadows Corona Park — for the benefit of a private, for-profit business and seating up to 25,000 people with a potential expansion to 35,000 — is another nail in the coffin of destruction that has been and is being perpetrated on the second most-used park in New York City, primarily by the less privileged. Comment.
Political Action

Saffran backs stop-and-frisk, vocational schools in mayor race

The City Council race to replace Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone) is moving forward. Attorney Dennis Saffran has emerged as the key Republican candidate. Saffran ran 12 years ago for the 19th District seat and lost by 1 percent of the vote against now-state Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside), who is now running in a Democratic primary for borough president. Comment.
Letters

Queens Library needs help from patrons

The city’s executive budget has been released. It proposes a cut to Queens Library of $29.6 million, part of a proposed cut to libraries citywide of $100 million. Comments (1).
I Sit and Look Out

When buying clothing, be wary of country on the label

Since I was a child, I have been reading plaques, historical signs and labels. Some of my first columns for TimesLedger Newspapers were about historical markers near and around Borough Hall. Comments (7).
Editorial

Rockaway Rebound

Storm-battered Rockaway Beach is opening as promised Memorial Day weekend despite some tough odds, and it’s time for Queens residents to support the peninsula by going out for the day to play. Comment.
No Holds Barred

Suspected crimes must be judged impartially

I learned a good deal about government and many other things when I held an appointed position in the then new New York City Department of Air Pollution Control. The commissioner was Leonard Greenburg, a medical doctor and a Ph.D. in engineering. The deputy commissioner was Sylvan Hanauer, a brilliant civil engineer and good government activist. Comment.
Letters

Ferreras should back people, not biz

It does not require a rocket scientist to make a decision concerning a Major Soccer League stadium in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Comment.
Letters

Take part in city budget process

As a taxpayer, it is important that you have the opportunity to get involved in the city’s budget process. It is your money and it only makes sense that you have a say in how it is spent. Comments (1).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

City must stop practice of solitary confinement

It is time to end torture in New York City jails. I am referring to the rampant use of solitary confinement, which has brutalized incarcerated people, cost taxpayers millions of dollars and made our streets more dangerous. Comment.
The Civic Scene

Flushing Meadows development will do more harm than good

Officers and board members of the Kissena Park Civic Association recently testified at Community Board 7 about issues concerning the civic. Zoning Committee Chairman Joe Amoroso explained in the civic’s March 2013 newsletter what is of concern. Comments (1).
Letters

Knives have no place on a plane

It is ridiculous that the Transportation Security Administration is going to allow small knives to be carried on board planes. A small knife is just as dangerous as a large one. Comment.
Editorial

The Huntley Nine

What a sad day for Queens. Former state Sen. Shirley Huntley was sentenced to a year and a day in prison for stealing $87,000 from her own nonprofit to go shopping after secretly recording nine Democratic colleagues at her home in southeast Queens. Comments (1).
Letters

Back Willets Point development

Queens is on the verge of an economic development tidal wave, but if we do not encourage this growth, we stand to lose out on critical opportunities to improve the quality of life for residents. Comments (3).
Letters

Knives have no place on a plane

It is ridiculous that the Transportation Security Administration is going to allow small knives to be carried on board planes. A small knife is just as dangerous as a large one. Comment.
Jamaica

Tip of the week

Letters

People, biz must stop littering

At the northeast corner of Northern Boulevard and Clearview Expressway in Bayside is a green area where the Soldier’s Monument stands. The monument commemorates the sacrifices our men and women made serving in the armed forces during wartime. Comments (2).
QueensLine

People of all stripes came out for 1939 World’s Fair

The official opening of the 1939 World’s Fair came with the president’s opening remarks at 3:12 p.m., along with Gov. Herbert Lehman, Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia and fair President Grover Whalen, who headed the list of other speakers from 60 other participating nations. Comment.
Editorial

The New Clockwork Orange

The Internet and smartphones have opened up a world that was unimaginable 10 years ago. Comment.
Letters

Rockaway line would reduce bus crowding

The A train has been out of service since Superstorm Sandy devastated many areas of Rockaway. So I have been taking the Q52 bus to get home, at Arverne By the Sea. Comments (1).
Political Action

Protection from terrorism is first priority of government

Since Washington, D.C., is the national capital, it could be said that Boston is the spiritual capital of our country from the standpoint that it was in April 1775 that the Revolutionary War began with the Battles of Lexington and Concord between American patriots and British soldiers. These military engagements occurred outside Boston and triggered a war that would last seven years. Comment.
Letters

Shame Congress into passing gun control laws

Republicans successfully derailed the passage of gun legislation last month in the last moments when passage looked likely. The 54 votes in favor fell short of the 60 needed to break a filibuster. U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who co-authored the bill, said it would have passed if the National Rifle Association did not score it. The NRA score scared enough senators to oppose it rather than risk reprisals from pro-gunners come election time. Most headlines called these folks cowards. Comment.
Letters

Reactivate the Rockaway Beach line

Bus service has always been an issue on the Rockaway Beach line, specifically the Q53. There is daily overcrowding with students and adults alike trying to get onto the bus so they can get to their destinations on time. Comments (1).
Letters

Obama, stop caving in to the GOP

It is hard to believe that our normally cognizant President Barack Obama would think that appeasing today’s warped incarnation of the Republican Party would have them reciprocate in kind. Comments (10).
Letters

Curran was a consummate coach

The death of basketball Coach Jack Curran is a sad loss for Archbishop Molloy High School, the city and the country. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Pols have no guts over gun control

I am disgusted with the cowardly behavior of some of our U.S. senators bowing down to the National Rifle Association and their lobbyists while more than 90 percent of Americans are in favor of universal background checks, a no-brainer. Yet 46 of our senators voted against the wishes of the people. Comments (5).
I Sit and Look Out

‘Star-Spangled Banner’ hard to sing, but it does the job

Like most American kids, I learned our national anthem at an early age, in school. Assemblies in JHS 73 in Maspeth and at Newtown High School started off with it, and so did baseball games and other events. Comments (4).
Letters

More guns are not the answer

The idea of solving violence committed with firearms by increasing the amount of firearms is as idiotic as offering a drowning man a glass of water to relieve his thirst. Comment.
The Civic Scene

MTA works hard to get homeless out of subway system

The Senior Citizens Advisory Council of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is a group of volunteers with four members from each borough who at monthly meetings listen and suggest things to MTA officials. Comment.
Editorial

Voters in Limbo

The question hanging over Queens is what happens to constituents when their elected officials are charged with felonies. State Sen. Malcolm Smith, whose district covers the greater Jamaica area, and City Councilman Dan Halloran, who represents a swath of the north, have been accused of bribery in a corruption scandal. Comment.
Letters

Earth Day deserves coverage

Did I miss it? In reading the April 19-25 issue of the Bayside Times, I saw not one mention of Earth Day or Earth Week. Comment.
Letters

MTA disrespects Queens CBs

Community Board 9 is outraged by the lack of communication with us regarding a major MTA intrusion of articulated buses 62 feet long on the Q10 route from Kew Gardens to John F. Kennedy International Airport. Comment.
Letters

Shame on Senate over gun bill

It is incomprehensible that the background checks for people who want to purchase guns did not pass the U.S. Senate. Comments (5).

April, 2013

Letters

Do your part to maintain quality of parks

Regarding your April 5-11 article “Parks needs to better care for trees,” we need to take care of our trees for many reasons and need to hire more staff. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Breezy Point

Tip of the week

Letters

NRA, foreign nations similar

On April 2, the U.N. General Assembly, to a resounding cheer, overwhelmingly approved — 154 in favor, three against and 23 abstaining — the first international treaty regulating the multibillion-dollar global arms trade. The obvious goal: keeping deadly weapons out of the hands of perpetrators who would wreak havoc upon their victims. Comments (2).
QueensLine

1936 saw Lindbergh baby killer’s body cremated in boro

It was 1936, the midpoint of the Depression. About 1,500 Queens families on relief could cultivate some of the 5,000 “subsistence gardens” in the borough. The gardens were open to all on home relief, those on work relief who did not receive supplemental home relief and those on work relief receiving only the minimum security wage of $60.50 a month. Comment.
Editorial

‘A Mixed Blessing’

In a lecture at Temple Sinai in Roslyn Heights, L.I., on the day after the Boston bombings, former President Bill Clinton noted that the 21st-century world of the Internet and social media is “a mixed blessing.” Comment.
Letters

NRA, pols in cahoots against kids

Every newspaper in the country should print the names of the 41 Republican U.S. senators, along with the five Democrats, who voted down the gun control bill. Comments (2).
Political Action

Mayors lose public support after serving three terms

In recent times, there has been a lot of attention focused by the city’s general public on the mayor’s office. This is true of mayors who have served for more than two four-year terms. Comment.
Editorial

The Small Town of College Point

The kids who signed up to play ball in the College Point Little League this spring are learning more than how to throw, catch and swing a bat. Their coaches are teaching them a far more important lesson: how to deal with one of the tragedies that is part of life. Comment.
Letters

Good riddance to gun makers

Three cheers for Connecticut! Colt, the firearm manufacturer of the AR-15, is packing up its wares. It is leaving the Constitution State and Gov. Dannel Malloy for the Lone Star State and Gov. Rick Perry. Comments (5).
Letters

Participatory budgeting shines in eastern Queens

Over the past eight months, the residents of eastern Queens embarked on a new and unusual way to decide how $1 million of government funds would get spent. The results exceeded my expectations and once again proved the value of public participation in government. Comment.
Letters

MTA must improve Rockaway transit

The buses on the Woodhaven corridor are too overcrowded and unreliable and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority does not care. Comments (3).
Letters

Give constituents their owed monies

It is important that the projects that were approved for funding in City Councilman Daniel Halloran’s (R-Whitestone) 19th Council District under the participatory budgeting project be allocated those monies. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Trade Fair must hire back workers

As members of the City Council, we write in support of your meat department workers and their efforts to receive fair and lawful treatment in the workplace. Comments (6).
Editorial

No Slippery Slope

A town hall meeting last week at the Museum of the Moving Image gave both sides in the debate over gun legislation a chance to air their feelings about how this legislation will affect Queens. Comment.
QueensLine

Hollis Hills’ Donny Deutsch made millions in business

If you have watched NBC’s morning show “Today” in recent years, then perhaps you have encountered the show’s popular discussion segment “The Experts.” Comment.
Editorial

The 113th Precinct Has Work to Do

We look forward to the day when the residents of the Baisley Park Houses will believe the police officers from the 113th Precinct are on their side. Comment.
Letters

Halloran blood drive is still on

I am the blood drive chairman for the 19th City Council District, in the district office of Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone). We are hosting a blood drive Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. in front of Key Food in the Whitestone Shopping Center, at 153-17 Cross Island Pkwy. Comments (1).
Letters

Ragusa target of unfair criticism

As former Queens elected officials, we have had the opportunity to work closely with Queens Republican Party Chairman Phil Ragusa. We have known Ragusa for more than 30 years, and in our experience he is one of the most honest, diligent, decent and forthright people we have had the pleasure to be associated with in our many years in public service. Comment.
Letters

Do away with the city’s five borough presidencies

The old city Board of Estimate included the five borough presidents and, as a result, they possessed to some degree legislative power. The board was declared unconstitutional because the numerical populations in each borough were not the same. Comment.
I Sit and Look Out

People in America need to learn how to speak English

In the current discussion of immigration reform, learning to speak, read and write English with some efficiency is one of the requirements for citizenship that everyone seems to agree on. It is something someone applying for citizenship today has to be able to do, but there are some exemptions to that requirement. They should be few in number. Comments (4).
Letters

Patronize local businesses to keep them alive

As a regular patron of North Shore Hardware, I could not agree more with the April 5-11 Bayside Times article “Little Neck merchant nails customer service.” Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

MTA must show respect for Flushing church

I am writing to you today because I am concerned about the situation around St. George’s Episcopal Church, at 135-32 38th Ave. in Flushing. Comment.
The Civic Scene

Flushing Meadows should not undergo development

The Queens Civic Congress, an umbrella organization of approximately 100 civic associations in Queens, has gone on record opposing further development of Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Comment.
Editorial

Yet Another Case

Despite conversations recorded by federal investigators that strongly suggest state Sen. Malcolm Smith attempted to bribe his way into the mayor’s office, attorney Gerald Shargel said the senator is “not resigning.” Comment.
On Point

Speed cameras will waste money and serve as a nuisance

Hold on to your wallets! A new effort by the city to pick your pockets is underway and it is called speed cameras. Remember when the city promised that red light cameras were being installed for safety, not revenue enhancement? We were sold that bill of goods by the same politicians who told us profits from the lottery would bolster education spending. Comments (3).
Editorial

The Culture of Corruption

“Money is what greases the wheels — good, bad, or indifferent,” City Councilman Dan Halloran said. Comment.
Letters

Primary race needed for Halloran’s seat

In light of recent developments — i.e., the arrests of City Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone) and Vincent Tabone — I am calling on the Queens Republican Party leadership to give us Republicans a choice. Comments (10).
Letters

Police officer intimidates resident at CB 8 meeting

I attended a Community Board 8 meeting March 13, which had on its agenda a United States Tennis Association application to expand its facilities in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Comments (3).
Letters

Parks needs to better care for trees

As we approach spring and summer, it is important for the city Parks Department’s Forestry Division to maintain the thousands of trees that line streets and that are in our parks and playgrounds. Comments (2).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Beep candidates pledge task force creation

On March 28, the Bay Terrace Community Alliance hosted an informative and lively candidates forum. It was standing room-only at the Clearview Park Golf Course Clubhouse as residents came out to meet the person who will be the next borough president. All announced contenders for the office of borough president participated. Comment.
Editorial

Cowboys Get Booted

We are saddened to hear that the city Parks Department has temporarily shut the Howard Beach stables run by the Federation of Black Cowboys. Comment.
Letters

USTA plan will benefit boro park

Regarding the March 22-28 letter to the editor “Parkland should remain haven for people, not business,” we are confident that in partnership with the local Queens community boards and elected officials we will ensure a better Flushing Meadows Corona Park and United States Tennis Association Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Comment.
Political Action

NYPD inspector general would create leadership friction

The dispute involving city police powers seems to have focused on the stop-and-frisk procedure the police have been using for the last several years as a way of deterring crimes before they are committed. A lot of controversy has been generated over this matter. Comment.
Editorial

Sick Days for All

If every year were an election year, city government might get something done. Comment.
Letters

Council should pass paid sick leave

It is time for paid sick leave to become law in New York. We should no longer force parents to choose between holding their jobs and caring for loved ones, especially young children. While paid sick leave would enable fathers to lean in by pitching in during family illness, it will especially be a godsend to single mothers. Comment.
Letters

Higher fare must equal better service

Now that the bus and subway fares have increased, will there be a corresponding increase in the quality of service for the riding public? Comment.
Letters

Keep gifted program in boro school

On March 6, the PTA of PS 122 held a rally that filled the school’s auditorium with concerned parents, teachers, kids, educators and legislators. The reason: the city Department of Education’s proposed changes to a gifted and talented academy that has been a successful model for similar programs for the past 25 years. Comment.

March, 2013

QueensLine

Former head of CIA had ties to LIC fire department

The spy genre in movies, books and television has been popular in America for decades. This year’s 50th anniversary of the James Bond film series and the popularity of the TV show “Homeland” are examples of this. The real stories of men and women in the service of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency are often as fascinating and outlandish as their fictional counterparts. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Political Action

Third parties have long history in local, national politics

The 2013 election in New York City is coming soon and it includes both the primary and general elections for mayor and all elected executive city officials — that is, in addition to the entire City Council being up for election or re-election. Comment.
Letters

New York Legislature must pass DREAM Act

Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand/A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame/Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name/Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand/Glows world-wide welcome ....” Comments (1).
Letters

UFT, city need to settle on a contract

This October will be four years since the United Federation of Teachers contract expired. Comments (5).
Editorial

Wait Until 2018

The flooding in parts of southeast Queens didn’t begin or end with Superstorm Sandy. Comment.
Letters

Reform presidential primary process

Now that the presidential election has passed, it is time to re-examine how we choose our candidates for the highest office in our country. I believe we should consider changes in our presidential primary system. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Parkland should remain haven for people, not business

In describing Flushing Meadows Corona Park as not being a “traditional park,” TimesLedger Newspapers is off the mark in its March 1-7 editorial “Show Us the Money.” Comment.
Letters

Deli manager sets the record straight

Please allow me the opportunity to respond to the March 1-7 Bayside Times letter “Dogs should not eat off tables.” I understand that it does not wish to engage in a “he said, she said” between two parties, but since the reputation of a respected business in the Bayside community for almost 20 years is at stake, I think it is fair I have a chance to respond to the allegations presented in the letter. Comments (1).
I Sit and Look Out

Philanthropist, justice and columnist share only one thing

Andrew Carnegie, Antonin Scalia and I have a little in common. Comment.
Editorial

Another Senseless Death

Abdullah Munshi offered a bizarre defense for driving drunk on the morning of July 10 when he struck and killed Frank Avino, a 63-year-old electrician from College Point. Comment.
Letters

Pols must stand up for Flushing Meadows, not big biz

What happened to the New Yorkers I have known and loved? Comments (3).
No Holds Barred

Prosecutors should handle sex abuse cases in religious groups

This series of blogs started out to try to find out why in a special election for a seat in Congress, considered “safe” for the Democrats, the Republican candidate won. The district then encompassed Queens areas and some parts of Brooklyn where Robert Turner won very handily, thanks to the votes of Ultra-Orthodox Jews. He lost in Queens, but he became a Representative. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

CB 7 should vote no on USTA

Community Board 7 is entitled to whatever information and conditions it deems necessary to aid it in making a decision on the United States Tennis Association’s current application that involves a significant structural expansion of its facilities in Flushing Meadows Corona Park (“CB 7 wants more info on USTA expansion,” TimesLedger Newspapers Feb. 22-28, 2013). Comments (1).
Editorial

Call it Correction

The city appears to be getting serious about lowering the rate of recidivism for criminals sentenced to up to a year at Rikers Island and all the other jails in the system. Comment.
Letters

Follow New York’s lead on gun control

Protecting our most valuable resource — children — is any society’s most sacred duty, but it is a mission that we too often fail to accomplish. And that failure, whether it is in a supermarket parking lot in Tucson, Ariz., or a classroom in Newtown, Conn., is a continuing tragedy that should offend us all and shame us into immediate action. Comments (29).
Douglaston

City planned bridge to fill in boro’s Alley Pond in 1955

It was March 1955 when the city announced plans to inject 250,000 tots with the polio vaccine. The city public health commissioner explained that the effort to eradicate polio would involve all first- and second-grade school kids. Comment.
Editorial

Innocent Until ICE Gets You

The City Council has passed legislation that would stop the city Department of Correction from handing over undocumented immigrants to U.S. Immigrant and Customs Enforcement if they are youthful offenders, do not have significant criminal records, have been accused of low-level offenses or have been convicted of some types of misdemeanor offenses. Comment.
Letters

No. 7 should service St. Pat’s parade

We are writing to request that the MTA reinstate No. 7 train service between Queensboro Plaza and Times Square March 16. Comment.
Letters

Gov’t must save U.S. Postal Service

It is sad to contemplate the possible demise of our reliable “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds” U.S. Postal Service, but that may fall victim to the onslaught of the privatization pirates. Comments (4).
Health

Tip of the week

Political Action

Long sees loss in Senate race as a learning experience

Attorney Wendy Long made her first try for high public office when she ran in a Republican primary last year for the U.S. Senate in New York. She ran a successful campaign by defeating her opponents, U.S. Rep. Robert Turner of Middle Village and Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos, by wide margins. Comments (1).
Letters

City and UFT need to work together

The failure of the city and the United Federation of Teachers to reach an agreement regarding new teacher evaluations is a disgrace. Comment.
Letters

Alley Pond meadows makes one appreciate nature

Standing in the white powdery cover of Alley Pond’s meadow alone, something moves me to savor the ability to observe distant patterns of angry steel-gray clouds touching a plaster-sculpted earth. This life sustainer with its own pattern of land and water is seemingly suspended in time by the winter’s severity. Comments (1).
On Point

Sequester necessary to stop out-of-control gov’t spending

I woke up March 1 amazed to find buses and subways running, planes still flying and creating too much noise in Bayside and the gears of government grinding along. After weeks of nonstop predictions of a sequestration Armageddon from Washington, I was relieved that the roads were still open and traffic lights functioning, enabling me to reach the deli and my morning joe at the Glen Oaks Shopping Center. Comments (1).
Editorial

The Purpose of Flushing Meadows

Ever since March 12, 1733, when Bowling Green in Lower Manhattan became the first official park in New York City, parks have played an important role in a city which has seen its greenspace disappear. Comments (1).
Letters

Bloomberg should ban styrofoam

It seems there are people who are criticizing Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s attempt to ban styrofoam. Comments (2).
The Civic Scene

Boro high school student embodies success, hard work

Brandon Newell is a respected student by Principal Lynn C. Callender, of the Business, Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship High School in the Campus Complex in Cambria Heights. She said when she assumed the leadership of the school last September, Brandon was one of the first students who came to her with suggestions on how to help the school move forward. Comment.
Editorial

What’s Taking So Long?

It’s been two months since 19-year-old Robert Jackson was allegedly brutalized by police around the corner from the 109th Precinct. Comment.
Letters

Do not build stadiums in parks

I support reader Benjamin Haber’s letter to the editor “Enjoy Parks for Open Spaces, Not Sports Stadiums.” Comment.
Letters

Allow for upgrade of diesel trains

I am writing in support of a request that has already been made in a letter co-signed by 43 Assembly members, including all the members from the Queens delegation, that an appropriation of $17 million be made available to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority for the purposes of upgrading 10 diesel engines of freight locomotives owned and leased by the Long Island Rail Road for the purposes of hauling waste throughout the New York City area. Comment.
Letters

Dogs should not eat off tables

On Feb. 16, I had lunch at Ben’s Delicatessen in the Bay Terrace Shopping Center. This was my first time dining in this establishment. I was disturbed at a site across the dining room while I was about to bite into my sandwich. Comments (2).
Letters

MLS stadium could pose health hazard

Supporters of the Major League Soccer stadium in Flushing Meadow Corona Park have a myopic view of our need for another stadium. They espouse economic benefits and jobs, but little else. Comment.
Editorial

Help the Helpers

Should Federal Emergency Management Agency funds be used to repair churches and synagogues damaged by Hurricane Sandy? Comment.
Letters

Gun restrictions will not infringe on people’s rights

When I was a kid, I grew up with images of Hopalong Cassidy shooting umpteen bullets at bad guys from his six-shooter while riding on his white horse, Topper, at a full run. Paladin was called to town to wipe out bad guys because he was the guy with the gun in the ad, Have Gun Will Travel. Wyatt Earp shot all the bad guys when they deserved it and so did Steve McQueen and several others. Comments (22).
QueensLine

Film, stage actress Cecily Adams, 46, born in Jamaica

Actress Cecily Adams was born in Jamaica Feb. 6, 1958, to singer Adelaide Efantis and actor Don Adams, of “Get Smart” fame. Comment.
I Sit and Look Out

A mayor of the people, Ed Koch will be greatly missed

Walking on the Brooklyn Bridge, holding a peregrine falcon. Comments (4).
Editorial

Show Us the Money

We are pleased to see that Community Board 7 has put the brakes on the United States Tennis Association’s proposal to expand its facility in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Comment.

February, 2013

Letters

Church needs to enter the 21st century

With the announcement by Pope Benedict XVI that he will be resigning as head of the Roman Catholic Church at the end of February due to personal reasons, it is now time for the College of Cardinals to elect a pope that will be more moderate in views, especially regarding allowing priests to marry. Comments (4).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Bayside

Tip of the week

Letters

Protect loved ones from smoking

Our home is our refuge, an investment and the place where our families grow, but it can also be the place where our children’s lungs are first introduced to secondhand smoke by smokers who live in the building. Comment.
Editorial

Save the Pigs

Since his days as a city councilman, state Sen. Tony Avella has never been one to avoid the spotlight. Some might even say the man who would be the next borough president is a publicity hog. Comment.
Letters

City Council members need to work for the people

I had written to each of you regarding your inaction with respect to the mayor’s ban on sweetened drinks larger than 16 ounces. Councilman Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone) was kind enough to provide me with a letter signed by himself and 13 Council members and sent to Mayor Michael Bloomberg June 1 protesting the enactment of the ban. Comments (3).
Editorial

Are Food Carts Fair?

In the past year there has been an explosion in the number of food carts in Queens and the other outerboroughs. These carts are nothing new in Manhattan, but in Queens they are beginning to ruffle some feathers. Comment.
Letters

Uphold church-state separation

The U.S. House of Representatives approved disaster assistance for houses of worship. Comments (6).
Political Action

Catsimatidis to focus on schools, job creation and labor

John Catsimatidis, prior to his recent announcement that he is now a Republican candidate for mayor, had a long and successful career in the free enterprise system. Comments (1).
Letters

Koch was a true New Yorker

I am writing to express my sympathies over the departure of former Mayor Ed Koch (1924-2013), Mr. New York. The time was 1924 when Mr. New York was born in the Bronx, when “the smell of the Bronx is perfume to me” (Rodgers & Hart, “I Gotta Get Back to New York”) and “as black as onyx, we’ll find the Bron-nix Park Express” (Rodgers & Hart, “Manhattan”). Comment.
QueensLine

Plan was made in 1959 for boro to secede from N.Y. over taxes

In 1959, the City Planning Commission formally received plans for the Big Six Towers Feb. 2, a proposed cooperative apartment housing complex sponsored by New York Typographical Union No. 6. Comment.
Letters

Storms proof of global warming

The latest information regarding this past year is that it was the warmest on record for the United States since records were kept since 1895. Comments (15).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Enjoy parks for open spaces, not sports stadiums

Major League Soccer’s Madison Avenue advertising that its proposed stadium in Flushing Meadows Corona Park will be a business boon for Queens is like everything it has been claiming: nonsense and without any credibility (“MLS sees stadium plan biz boon for Queens,” Jan. 25-31). Comments (1).
Political Action

City should bring back system of vocational schools

The policy of teacher evaluations has been with us during the last several years. This issue is constantly being brought to the forefront in terms of improving the public education system in New York state and especially New York City. Comment.
Editorial

The Challenge for Nily Rozic

Recently elected state Assemblywoman Nily Rozic is the only Queens official on a Top 13 list of lawmakers labeled as up-and-coming environmental leaders. Comment.
Letters

GOP should look in mirror over hypocrisy

Republican supporters say if Democrats are going to call them stupid and hypocrites, they should have their facts right. Well, here are a few examples. Comments (4).
The Civic Scene

Beware of people calling, asking for your personal info

The October 2012 edition of the Holliswood Civic News warns about mail tampering and theft on two blocks in the community. It seems that a person has or people have been going into mailboxes. People have had their mail thrown into a garbage pail, a credit card application was taken and unauthorized charges were made and a large check was stolen but was not cashed. The U.S. postal inspector has been notified. Comment.
Editorial

Some Rob You with a Fountain Pen

Once again the people of Queens have learned that a leader they trusted has been picking their pockets. Comment.
Letters

City should check tree stability

One of the destructive results of Hurricane Sandy was the destruction of trees throughout the city. Comment.
I Sit and Look Out

Casting votes against Sandy aid is not the American way

As a Manhattan native, I have always been proud of being born in this city, but I learned from my parents that I should consider myself an American first before giving my allegiance to any locality. Comments (1).
Flushing

Tip of the week

Editorial

Appeal to Moderate Republicans

Even though the city has been run by Republican mayors for the last 20 years, the party has not gained in numbers or influence. Comments (2).
Letters

Four pols show courage on gun control

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden deserve great credit for their efforts to curb gun violence in our country. So does Gov. Andrew Cuomo at the state level and Mayor Michael Bloomberg at the city level. Comments (2).
On Point

Finance Dept. bases condo and co-op taxes on fiction

If you are a co-op or condominium owner or private homeowner, you should know that the city Department of Finance has released its annual assessed valuation numbers for all real estate in New York City. Comment.
Editorial

Tough Choices

The time has come for painful common sense. Comment.
Letters

State must find funding in budget for early education

I am writing to request that you hold the funding levels for Early Intervention Programs and preschool services at the same levels that were enacted in the 2012-13 state budget in your executive budget proposal for fiscal year 2013-14 and commit to doing so in future budgets. Comment.
Letters

Writer cannot decide gun ownership

Unfortunately, Kenneth Kowald’s Jan. 17-23 article “NRA has no right to dictate who should live and die” is filled with the same illogical, irrational cliches we have been putting up with for years from the anti-gun extremists. Comments (3).
Editorial

Hizzoner

There is little we can say about the late Ed Koch that hasn’t already been said. He was one of the greatest mayors this city ever knew, a quintessential New Yorker who lifted the spirits of this city when it needed it most. Comments (1).
Letters

Clinton performed well before GOP

I think U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton did an outstanding job defending herself and the State Department from the disgraceful onslaught by the Republicans on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Comments (1).
Letters

Whitestone Knights of Columbus raise funds for needy

Charitable works are a constant in Whitestone. The local Knights of Columbus, the Monsignor Francis J. Dillon Council No. 5872, is constantly at work trying to help and assist those in need by sacrificing their own time to raise funds. Comment.
Letters

Stop No. 7 work for Lunar New Year

We would like to thank you for your Jan. 22 letter expressing the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s commitment not to disrupt No. 7 train service Feb. 8, 2014, the date of the 2014 Lunar New Year Parade. Comment.
Letters

Learn to put up with plane noise

LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy International airports contribute enormous amounts of money to the economy of New York City that benefit all residents who are expected to share equally in the good and the bad that flows therefrom. Comments (1).
Editorial

Hope for Immigration Reform

Reports that a bipartisan group of U.S. senators has made progress on a plan to overhaul the nation’s immigration system should be welcome news not only to the thousands of illegal immigrants living in Queens, but to everyone who has a heart. Comment.
Letters

Gun law should be model for U.S.

The new gun restriction law passed by New York state’s Legislature is a good beginning down the path for making a dent in reducing weapons on our streets. Comments (3).
Editorial

Rapid Repairs

It’s hard to turn on the nightly news without seeing a report of a victim of Hurricane Sandy living in a tent or shivering in a heatless house on the couch with three quilts and a blanket. Comment.
Letters

Centrist GOPers should take back party

Just when you thought you heard the most outrageous mouthings from our gun-aholics, they one-up themselves. The following is the twisted logic presented by Larry Ward, chairman of Gun Appreciation Day, who said at a press conference celebrating the event. Comments (1).

January, 2013

Letters

Sandy bill proves government works

The U.S. House of Representatives voted to approve the $51 billion in storm relief aid for the tri-state region, but there were 180 representatives who voted against it. Comments (8).
Middle Village

BLOCK SHOTS: Droesch makes ‘miraculous’ move to CK assistant

Clare Droesch completed one of her life’s dreams a year after she wasn’t sure if she would live at all. Comments (1).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Only Avella understands importance of parkland

In 1895, Frederick Law Olmstead, the genius who created Central and Prospect parks, said, “The survival of our park system requires the exclusion from management of real estate dealers and politicians and that the first duty of our park trustees is to hand down from one generation to the next the treasure of scenery which the city placed in their care.” Comments (1).
Editorial

Bus Drivers Are Not Selfish Thugs

Since they went on strike just over a week ago, the city’s school bus drivers have been vilified by the media and political leaders who said the “selfish drivers” were “holding the children hostage.” Comment.
Letters

Nix plan for FMCP soccer stadium

In terms of taking parkland for private interests, I remember helping to get citizens to sign petitions against Donald Mannes’ project for putting a racetrack in Flushing Meadow Corona Park. Comment.
Editorial

Cuomo’s Arbitrary Deadline

At a time when the city Department of Education is faced with overcrowded classrooms, outdated textbooks and a shortage of basic supplies, the city has lost out on up to $450 million in state education funds. Comment.
Letters

Raise minimum wage above $8.50

As we start a new year and take a hard look at the city’s economic situation, a glaring need presents itself: In order to help rebuild our middle class, we need to help the working poor climb out of poverty by raising the minimum wage. Comment.
QueensLine

January 1936 a month of misery for many in Queens

The double bill of Shirley Temple in “The Littlest Rebel” and “Last of the Pagans” was at the Astoria in January 1936. The Triboro had “A Tale of Two Cities” with Ronald Coleman. Errol Flynn and Olivia de Haviland starred in “Captain Blood.” The Broadway Grand and RKO Proctors were showing Katherine Hepburn in “Sylvia Scarlet.” “Annie Oakley” starred Barbara Stanwyck, Melvin Douglas and Preston Foster. Comment.
Letters

Good Samaritan saved dog from attack

I was walking my son’s dog, a beagle named Oscar, on 210th Street near 69th Avenue when Oscar was attacked by two pit bulls. Comments (1).
Letters

First responders deserve gratitude

One thing we as New Yorkers should be proud of is the way our first responders respond to accidents and other dangerous situations that put people in harm’s way. Comment.
Letters

Learn to live with airplane noise

There has been much media coverage, including an editorial from TimesLedger Newspapers (“Noise About Noise,” Dec. 27, 2012-Jan. 2, 2013), concerning complaints about alleged changes in flight patterns emanating from LaGuardia Airport. Comment.
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Support mediation group to combat social violence

The tragedy in Newtown, Conn., left us heartbroken and looking for answers. No doubt the shooting was a result of many underlying issues, but as a mediation and family services center, we are asking ourselves: Might the lack of opportunity to resolve conflicts be one contributing factor? Comment.
Political Action

GOP could win City Hall if it can avoid a September primary

In the United States electoral system, most of the focus is on the November election, but the political party primary election in many cases is of equal importance. Comment.
Editorial

Education in

We congratulate Cardozo High School Principal Gerald Martori for recognizing just how important it is that students in the 21st century understand China and the Asian culture. Comments (6).
Letters

Macchiarola will be sorely missed

Last month, New York City lost one of its most respected and effective schools chancellor when Frank Macchiarola died. His service as chancellor coincided with the period of my husband Leonard’s service as chairman of the state Assembly Education Committee. Comment.
I Sit and Look Out

NRA has no right to dictate who should live and die

I fired a weapon twice in my life, on two successive days. Comments (12).
Editorial

DOE Doesn’t Learn

What will it take to convince the city Department of Education that its shoot-first, ask-questions-later approach to improving schools isn’t working? Comment.
Letters

Nation needs better mental health outreach

First, I recommend a comprehensive education campaign for the American public and the mental health community for the public to better understand the community when communicating how to be better understood. Comment.
The Civic Scene

DOE must be more understanding of autistic students

When one reads that the city Department of Education suspended dozens of special needs 4- and 5-year-olds last year, one has to suspect the DOE is failing some of our most fragile children. This revelation comes on the heels of new policies for special needs students just initiated this school year. Comment.
Editorial

There Goes the Neighborhood

Plans at Queens Hospital Center to turn one of its buildings into a residence for people with low incomes and people with chronic conditions and mental disabilities have raised concern in the community. Comment.
Letters

Everyone must come together to solve nation’s problems

Mr. President, now is the time to deal with all the issues that we, as a country and a people, have been ignoring and stop kicking the can down the road for future generations to deal with. Comments (1).
Letters

U.S. must abolish Electoral College

Now that the presidential race has been decided, we should re-examine the way this particular contest is conducted in our country. Comments (4).
Cartoon

Tip of the week

Letters

Noise from planes a nuisance

For a long time I have noticed more planes flying overhead now every morning at 6 a.m. The planes fly overhead and wake me. Comment.
QueensLine

Filmmaker Ed Burns grew up in Woodside, Valley Stream

Actor, writer and director Edward Burns was born Jan. 29, 1968, and raised in Woodside and Valley Stream, L.I. Burns is known for his role as Pvt. Richard Reiben in “Saving Private Ryan” and for later directing shoestring budget romantic comedies such as “Nice Guy Johnny” and “Newlyweds.” Comment.
Letters

Make gun safety a high priority

The slaughter of innocents at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., sickened me and moved me to do something I had not done in a long time. Comments (3).
Editorial

Shame on Congress

There is no excuse for the delay in approving federal aid for the victims of Hurricane Sandy. Comment.
Letters

Put utility lines underground

One important issue that needs to be dealt with as soon as possible is to putting utility lines underground so damage to electrical, phone and cable service will be significantly reduced during future storms. Comment.
Letters

City teachers need a contract in 2013

As this year draws to a close, city public schools teachers will start 2013 without a new contract. Comments (1).
Flushing

Tip of the week

Letters

We would be better without guns

I do not understand why we need to have guns so prevalent in our society. I know about the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms. I know about the Bill of Rights and when and why it was adopted. Comments (10).
The Civic Scene

Boro salons cater to disabled youth during holiday season

For the 29th year Larry Mattola, owner of LP & Co. Hair Design, has opened his shop on a Sunday prior to the holiday season to provide beauty treatments to the developmentally disabled children in the community. Comment.
On Point

Columnist wants to see better management of city trees in 2013

As I look forward to the new year, below is one civic leader’s Top 10 wish list for 2013. Comment.
Letters

American firearms need regulation

The Second Amendment calls for regulation, not a blanket absence of common sense. Comments (7).
Editorial

The Challenge for 2013

Queens took it on the chin in 2012, but the future looks bright in 2013. Comments (1).
Letters

City must overhaul tree maintenance

I am writing once again to highlight the failure of the city and the city Parks Department to properly maintain city trees. Comment.
Political Action

Move all primary elections from September to June

In recent years, we have had a September primary election in which political parties with more than one candidate have the registered voters of their party choose a candidate through the primary electoral process. Once the candidates are chosen, the general election campaign then continues for about eight weeks until the fall election in early November. Comment.
Letters

Pols must back weapon control

The shooting massacre at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., was a senseless tragedy that could have been avoided. Comments (10).
CNG: Community Newspaper Group