Letters to The Editor, Week of Dec. 7, 2017

Report ducks larger issue

To The Editor:

Re “Pier 40 report: Fields of dreams…but also fears of heights” (news article, Nov. 30):

The draft report by the Community Board 2 Future of Pier 40 Working Group is thoughtful and thorough, but stops short of fully confronting the contradictions of the park mandate as interpreted and implemented for the past 20 years. According to the Hudson River Park Trust, the future of Pier 40 and the entire park / esplanade requires a $1 billion commercial center to be built in the river, which will fully pay for its own construction, financing, developer fees and maintenance, plus $12.5 million dollars to the park annually. That’s a big project, reminiscent of the Hudson Yards and the Time Warner Center.

The Trust needs to scale down its building plans and seek other models for maintenance and funding. The only way to keep the Pier 40 playing field protected from winds but still open to the sun and sky is to keep the existing donut structure. Adaptive reuse could fulfill most of C.B. 2’s recommendations for park-compatible facilities, but probably not the Trust’s hopes for maximum revenue.

Chris Gaylord

 

Weakness invites terrorism

To The Editor:

Re “Path of most resistance? Bikeway blockers put in” (news article, Nov. 9):

This attack, like all Islamic supremacists’ attacks, was not meant to separate us from our values or undermine our way of life. It was meant to kill us. That more than 16 years after 9/11, more innocent people’s blood was shed just blocks from Ground Zero, where the dust of the collapsed towers fell, people who were teenagers then, massacred by the same death ideology, is an obscenity and an affront to the dead of Sept. 11.

And how do our elected officials react? With the same homilies. It’s an “attack upon humanity.” Great, now what do you plan to do about it, de Blasio? Let’s install barriers and more cameras, post more heavily armed guards, have more body searches.

Our inaction, our weakness, our cowardice contributed to these deaths. We are so afraid of offending or cheating somebody somewhere — not of discounting our values or traditions — that we cheat these innocents, visitors to our city, of their lives. Weakness encourages terrorists, not a nonexistent intolerance on our part.

Michael Burke

 

Screwing us into ground

To The Editor:

Screwing you into the ground in the name of their donor base is more important than anything else. It’s more important than our corrupt health-insurance system providing even minimal care for everyone. It’s more important than drinkable water and biodiversity. It’s more important than not having someone with a nuclear arsenal at his disposal who could walk into a psych ward, talk with a doctor, and not expect to end up tranquilized to the hairline in a day room.

The top 1 percent’s money has been bankrolling Republican state races in the shadows for a long time now because, for them, it’s an investment. It’s an investment in building pipelines without ever having to worry about the environmental impact. It’s an investment in being able to indemnify banks against class-action suits brought by the people they victimize en masse. It’s an investment in being able to transfer all their wealth, intact, to the children they raise, who will think of everyone else as a fungible peasantry that exists to serve them in exchange for scraps.

Eventually, Paul Ryan’s assertion that giving corporations more money to add to the billions they keep in offshore accounts, so they can pay higher wages will sound like the turbocharged nonsense it is.

Before that day comes, America will find that voter suppression isn’t enough, and gerrymandering isn’t enough, and Citizens United isn’t enough, and that a free press is just too good for the peasants, even when the vast majority of them ignore it completely. When that day rolls around, everything you think of as “America” will finally be dead.

Mark Kalvin

 

E-mail letters, not longer than 250 words in length, to [email protected] or fax to 212-229-2790 or mail to The Villager, Letters to the Editor, 1 MetroTech North, 10th floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201. Please include phone number for confirmation purposes. The Villager reserves the right to edit letters for space, grammar, clarity and libel. Anonymous letters will not be published.

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