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Queens Chronicle

Letters to the Editor

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Posted: Thursday, December 22, 2011 12:00 pm | Updated: 4:06 pm, Thu Dec 22, 2011.

High rollers only

Dear Editor:

Why was I not permitted on the new 2nd floor of the casino?

I was stopped because I did not have a players card, according to the security guard. Since when it is a requirement to have a card to lose money?

Like many people I have played in casinos all over the United States and never was told to get a card. Is it some way of tracking players or discrimination to keep certainplayers out? Do the hookers spotted in the casino have cards?

I feel very offended.

Ray Hackinson

Ozone Park

Obama ends the war

Dear Editor:

In January 2009, President Obama took office with 142,000 U.S. troops stationed in Iraq.Today, there are zero.Our combat mission in Iraq has ended and the Iraqi people now have full responsibility for the security of their nation.President Obama has kept his word and brought the war in Iraq to a responsible end.

Iraq still faces challenges in the coming years, but as Secretary of DefenseLeonPanetta stated, “Iraq is equipped to deal with them.”President Obama remains committed to Iraq’s long-term security and also the success of our service members when they return home.

While the war has ended, we should pay tribute to the service of our military men and women — especially to those who made the ultimate sacrifice or were injured serving their nation, and we honor the sacrifices and commitments made by their families here at home.

Now, as thousands ofNew Yorkersare returning home from Iraq, wemustonce again reaffirm our commitment and responsibility to support service members and their families by providing quality healthcare, ensuring access to education, offering training to re-enter the civilian work force and job placement services, and encouraging companies to hire our troops and put them back to work.

The promise to end the war in Iraq was not a political promise, it was and is a promise made by our commander in chief to protect our nation. Today we should be proud of our troops and of our president, and stand united in moving forward as one nation.

Matthew Silverstein

Democratic State Committeeman for the 26th District

YDA Veterans & Military Affairs Caucus Chairman


The GOP vs. everyone

Dear Editor:

Letters to the Editor by their very nature express the opinion of the writer; some, however, are so far fetched and distorted that they defy basic reasoning. Writer Lenny Rodinappears determined in his Oct. 27 letter, “Biden’s bile,” to set a new benchmark.

He is upset with the fact that Vice President Biden used the word “rape” when he stated that not passing President Obama’s jobs bill would reduce the number of police on the street to fight crime. The vice president, referring to less police on the street, specifically said, “Murder will continue to rise. Rape will continue to rise. All crime will continue to rise”; quite obviously.

Mr. Rodin does not dispute the fact that the police force would be gravely reduced by not passing the bill, ergo reduced police enforcement, but claims that would be fine since we could instead take the necessary funds to maintain the force from “non-essential services” and renegotiated health and retirement benefits. This of course is the same-old, same-old Republican goal of disenfranchising the middle class.

That is Mr. Rodin’s plan for allaying the obvious rise in all crime if the police force is reduced due to the “just say no” Republicans not passing the president’s jobs plan. All you have to do is destroy “health and retirement” and other such “non-essential services.”

Clifton Black


The holiday’s meaning

Dear Editor:

Christmas is almost upon us, and I, like so many others, find myself reflecting about Christmases of the past.

My memories take me backto a bittersweet time, but one I remember with much fondness. It was 1963 and I was living in a corner house in Queens Village. I was 14 years old and my mother had just passed away in September of that year.

My father was 72 years old at the time, and we had an elderly man who lived with us, John Murphy, who was blind. Dad took care of him.

My father told me there were traditions concerning Christmas when a close family member passes away, and that we don’t send out Christmas cards nor do we decorate or put up a tree. This, he said, was for the first year of mourning and was done out of respect for the deceased. Dad told me hewould still like to make this a good Christmas for all of us, which included our dog and cat. He said he would not want to disappoint me.

I fully understood. I had lost my mother, but my father had lost his wife, whom he loved very much, who was his friend and lover, and who he thought would outlive him because she was 20 years younger than himself.

My father bought me a three-speed bike for Christmas. As I look back, I don’t think he could afford to do so because of all the hospitals bills Dad was left with; we did not have medical insurance. I guess he loved me very much, a debt I don’t think I could ever repay.

My father was a good cook. In the 1950s he workedas a short-order cook on a construction site in Great Neck where a new school was being built . That Christmas he prepared a good meal for us. I think as I look back that Christmas is not about the stuff we can get, but more importantly it is about sharing and doing things for one another.

After dinner I told my father to sit downin the living room and I would clean up and do the dishes. After all this was done I walked into the living room, where my father had fallen asleep. I woke him and asked him if he wanted to go to bed. He asked if I had had a good Christmas, and I told him it was more than I had hoped as I gave him a hug and a kiss on his cheek.

He smiled and slowly went to the bed he had shared with my mother and now slept in alone. But I think he knew that he was not totally alone. I also think he had a good Christmas too.

Frederick R. Bedell Jr.

Glen Oaks

The low-rise old days

Dear Editor:

Ron Marzlock’s Dec. 15 I Have Often Walked Column, "The World’s Fair, free pickles and the muralist," reminded me that in the 1930s zoning prohibited the construction in Queens of buildings in excess of six stories in height. As a result there were even very few six-story buildings, Queens consisting for the most part of one- and two-family homes. In 1938, when I was 10 years old and a student at PS 87 in Middle Village, I recall walking up to the third floor of the school, looking out the window north towards Corona and seeing, over the rooftops of the small homes, rising up into the sky, the Trylon and Perisphere — the symbols of the 1939 New York City World’s Fair.

Benjamin M. Haber


CUNY’s crybabies

Dear Editor:

CUNY studentsprotesting a proposed $350 per year tuition increase could learn about life in the real world by reading “$weet life for subway Candyman ‘D’elightful 55G a yr.” by Kevin Fasick and Don Kaplan, which appeared in the Dec. 3 New York Post.Subway candy vendor Alex “Tracks” McFarland clears$150 per day while Calvin Green makes $200 per day selling candy, cookies and trail mix bars at $1 each.CUNY crybabies could also considertaking a job at any fast food restaurant or department store, but that might hurt their egos and self esteem. Either way, it would not be hard to quickly clear $350.

Perhaps CUNY needs to add a mandatory course on Economics 101 for all students on how real people struggle to earn a living before handing out any diplomas.

Larry Penner

Great Neck, LI

No postal job cuts

Dear Editor:

(An open letter to Frank J. Calabrese, USPS Manager, Consumer and Industry Contact for the Triboro District)

I am writing to express my strong opposition to the United States Postal Service’s proposed elimination of some mail operations from the Queens Processing and Distribution Center in College Point — Queens is the 2nd most populous county in New York State. While I understand the USPS must make difficult decisions to confront its current fiscal condition, I urge you to reconsider a decision that would negatively impact the entire Queens community. If the USPS carried out this proposal, 702 jobs would be lost from the Queens community during difficult economic times. Postal service to my constituents and other Queens residents would also be adversely affected.

Shifting the mail-processing responsibilities of the Queens Center to outside the borough to Brooklyn would reduce the accessibility to a vital postal facility that tens of thousands of my constituents rely upon for efficient and predictable mail delivery. Moving processing operations would also decrease the high level of customer service that New Yorkers have come to expect from the USPS through the streamlined delivery made possible in good measure by the Queens Distribution Center. Businesses and organizations that send bulk mail would be particularly impacted as collection times would be earlier, while drop off times would be later. Mail would also likely be sorted more slowly and large mailings would no longer have a reliable drop-off location in the same geographic area they are being sent.

Instead of forcing Queens residents into accepting an unsatisfactory level of service, there are other options that Congress is considering to ease the financial burdens of the USPS. We must fight instead for measures I support that would allow the USPS to be more flexible in its business practices and pricing structure, and legislation that would relieve the burdens of prefunding retiree health costs. I accept that changes are needed to allow the USPS to continue functioning, but the closing of a viable facility should not be one of them. The large loss of jobs would not only devastate the hard-working postal workers themselves, but would have negative consequences for the local businesses and individuals that are dependent on reliable postal service in Queens.

Many postal workers, constituents and businesses have contacted my office and conveyed to me the hardships that service reductions would have on them. I strongly urge you to keep the current functions of the Queens facility in place.

Thank you for your consideration of this matter.

Gary L. Ackerman

U.S. Congressman for the 5th District


Welcome to the discussion.