The rift between the NYPD and many of our elected officials, including Mayor de Blasio, only appears to be growing, and that is not good news for anyone.The situation took a turn for the worse when the mayor made an unwise comment about an in…
This year marks the Queens Chronicle’s 20th annual toy and gift drive for the neediest children in the borough. As always, we ask your support, and as always, we’re confident we’ll get it, generous people that you are.
We collect these toys and other gifts — including some of life’s most basic necessities, ones that many of us take for granted — for children in homeless shelters here. They range in age from virtual newborns to teenagers, and they need your help to have a decent holiday season.
Move over, Manhattan! So long, Saratoga! Farewell, Florida!
There’s a new kid on the block when it comes to tourism, and guess what — it’s Queens!
State lawmakers are seeking a pay raise, and many of them should get one.
Now, before you throw this newspaper across the room in disgust, hear us out and take special note of the innovative pay structure we propose for our Assembly members and state senators.
We understand the natural inclination of many animal lovers to want carriage horses removed from the streets of Manhattan but in the end cannot support them.
If there were concrete evidence the animals are abused, as some anti-carriage people claim, that would be one thing. But there isn’t. There’s no reason to believe their caretakers don’t treat them as well as they can. It’s in their best interests to do so.
On Monday West Maspeth civic leader Charlene Stubbs called to our attention some graffiti on a box containing the Q54 schedule at a bus stop on Metropolitan Avenue in Middle Village. Its simple, sickening message:
“N-----s go home.”
The New York Police Department is a victim of its own success. Nowhere else have crime reductions quite like those seen here been achieved. Murder is down 85 percent since its peak 24 years ago; you cannot name another social ill cut back so drastically. And while credit certainly goes to policy makers, it goes above all to the Finest, who have carried out those policies.
Yet many members of the City Council, seemingly comfortable that the relative safety of today’s New York cannot be reversed, want to micromanage the force even more than it already is. Two bills that have been introduced recently would endanger not only the great progress the city has made in the last generation but also add to the deadly risks officers face on the street every day.
There are many measures worth implementing to protect the environment, but some are simply more cumbersome and costly than they’re worth. The revived City Council plan to make stores charge 10 cents for each bag a customer gets is one of those.
The goals are laudable, of course — to reduce the garbage New Yorkers produce and therefore the cost of shipping it, to keep the bags from clogging drains, to prevent them from getting tied up in trees and stuck elsewhere in the natural environment.
Residents of our borough showed their patriotism and respect for those who have served in the armed forces on Sunday with the fifth annual Queens Veterans Day Parade, which ran through Middle Village. We’re glad to see the event, as not everyone can make it to Manhattan for the big one there, and since they were on different days, anyone who had the ability and desire to could attend both.
That’s a fine way to show you care about our former servicemen and women, but it only goes so far. More difficult but also more worthwhile is showing that you care about and respect veterans all year long. And a great way to do that is to help those in need, of which there are many.
We’re not exactly buzzing with joy at the city’s new policy decriminalizing the possession of less than 25 grams of marijuana, but we’re not exactly coming down on it either.
We do recognize the contradiction between the illegality of marijuana and the legality of alcohol, which more and more people agree is actually more dangerous than the herb. And we don’t like the longstanding police trick of getting people, mostly young men of color, to empty their pockets in order to charge them with having pot out in public, which carries greater penalties than keeping it hidden. And we agree that, barring aggravating circumstances, possession of a little bit for personal entertainment is not something that should result in a life-altering criminal record.
Too often under the last administration in City Hall, the answer to the problems faced by schools whose students were struggling was to shut them down. Often it seemed like the option of first resort rather than of last resort, with former Mayor Bloomberg getting a poorly performing school in his sights — Jamaica High School is the perfect example — and then depriving it of the resources it would need to succeed, so he could then declare it a failure, close it and replace it.
Many schools in Queens were on his radar, and some barely escaped closure at the end of his tenure, thanks to a lawsuit filed by the United Federation of Teachers that successfully blocked the shutdowns. Those included John Adams High School in Ozone Park, Flushing High School and Long Island City High School.
After so many fits and starts, promises that couldn’t be kept and plain old bad luck, it looks like the popular but financially challenged Citi Bike bicycle-sharing program is finally on the verge of being turned around.
And it looks like it’s on the cusp of finally being brought to Queens. Long Island City, Sunnyside and Astoria will be the first to see the blue bikes, but we’re hopeful that eventually they will make their way to other areas sure to love them, such as Forest Hills.
Nov. 4 is Election Day, and while many in Queens may not be all that fired up about it because there are few competitive races here, all who are eligible should cast their ballot.
It’s true that many elections in the borough are effectively decided in the primaries because Democrats are so dominant. Many have no Republican opponent. But some do, in both the state Legislature and in Congress, and there are GOP hopefuls in the races for governor, state attorney general and comptroller, contests in which everyone gets to vote. See our election rundown elsewhere in this edition.