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To the editor,

Reader Henry Finkelstein must be a newbie to Shavana Abruzzo’s column, A Britisher’s View (“Shavana Abruzzo is an ‘ignorant racist,’ ” Sound Off to the Editor, June 27).

If anything, he is the head-in-the-sand ignorant racist who lives under a rock. I have been reading Shavana Abruzzo’s powerful, informative, and interesting column for years. Yeah, she’s British, but I know she has a love for this country that even many American-born people don’t have in their gut nor understand. That is a fact reflected in all her writings. She’s as American as I am!

Sounds like Henry Finkelstein from Sheepshead Bay still lives in 1949. This America we live in now is a far cry from then. Our politicians can go take a flying leap. All they care about is protecting their cushy political seats. As you read this, God knows who is sneaking in here from God knows where via that joke-of-a-border separating the U.S. and Mexico.

It is incomprehensible that there hasn’t been a construction crew parked along our paper-thin borders since 9-11 building a protective wall or fence or moat — from end-to-end — protecting us from the lawless crazies that live in lawless countries south of us. Still, faceless, nameless, undocumented, unknown people are pouring into this country. Criminals, gang members, people with germs, the mentally ill, and others know that Tommy-taxpayer will pay for their cell phones, iPods, baby clothes, baby care, healthcare, rent, potato chips, and ice cream.

Henry Finkelstein and I live in two different Brooklyns. We never used to have this problem on such a serious, egregious level. The decline seemed to have started in the early 1990s when a certain group of immigrants came here by the millions. Mr. Finkelstein knows who they are. These new immigrants then immediately proceeded to rip off America. They couldn’t wait to get car insurance, medical aid, food stamps, and raid the Section 8 system, not to mention trying to scam the electric and telephone companies by stealing people’s mail out of their mailboxes and calling up to open accounts. All this has affected us, the American people who are paying the bills for these illegal immigrants.

Mr. Finkelstein knows exactly what I am talking about. Is he gonna call me an ignorant racist, too? Shavana Abruzzo called America “a dumping ground.” Sounds right to me. Name withheld upon request

• • •

To the editor,

What a scathing letter that shmuck Henry Finkelstein wrote (“Shavana Abruzzo is an ‘ignorant racist,’” Sound Off to the Editor, June 27). I’m sure Shavana took his words with a grain of salt, but I am fuming. It shows that it would be impossible for anyone to underestimate his intelligence, since he obviously has none. Being bitter only pickles the one that stews in the brine.

I have been a longtime reader of Shavana Abruzzo’s column because she is an intrepid journalist who tackles tough issues with a brave and all-too-often lone voice. She tells it like it is. If you don’t like it, Henry Finkelstein, too bad.

David Brown

Mill Basin

• • •

To the editor,

You, Henry Finkelstein, are a true-blue, ignorant, racist American (“Shavana Abruzzo is an ‘ignorant racist,’ ” Sound Off to the Editor, June 27). You said that your parents came to the U.S.A. in 1949. I’m quite sure they, too, are ignorant racists — the fruit didn’t fall far from the tree.Marilyn Sheepshead Bay

Spot-on-Stanley

To the editor,

Stanley Gershbein, thank the Lord we are both out of the public school system because it continues to go awry (“Stan still says equal pay for equal work,” It’s Only My Opinion, June 9).

How in heaven’s name could teachers accept a contract that refuses to talk about class sizes and unruly pupils? Unity Caucus, the group which runs the union, has set up a voting system that allows non-teaching personnel to vote on the teacher contract. In other words, before according to today’s thinking, everyone must be prepared for an academic concentration in schooling. This is a major educational philosophical error. Not every child is suited for academic work. Others will excel in vocational training. Let’s not frown up this type of training. By forcing all children to work on academic programs, we are permitting more hostility towards schools and invariably more discipline problems.

The 600-schools concept ended because ultra-liberals preached the idea that you are a racist if you believe in such schools. They also showed that the vast majority of the students attending the school were minority. Wouldn’t this be the case if most of our school system is made up of minority children? It’s so much easier to blame the teacher when things go awry. The American Civil Liberties Union believes that every child has the right to disrupt another child’s education.

No matter how much money you pour into the schools, if you don’t solve the discipline problems, our schools will continue to fail. Under the current political climate, the 600-schools will never return. No one wishes to discuss the “d” word of discipline. Instead, we hear nonsense such as the “total child,” “alternate assessments,” “no chalk and talk,” and “you’re not motivating the student.”Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

• • •

To the editor,

The “600-schools” concept to which Stanley Gershbein refers so often were schools for kids with chronic emotional and behavioral problems. Their numbers were in the “600” range, such as PS 654. The Austin MacCormick-Island Academy began on Rikers as PS 616 in September, 1959. Susan Levy

Brooklyn, NY

Wood-up B’walk

To the editor,

Finally the local Councilmen Chaim Deutsch (D–Brighton Beach) and Mark Treyger (D–Coney Island) were willing to listen to the concerns about the Coney Island Boardwalk (“Pols hope to crack concrete B’walk plans,” May 18). Hurricane Sandy proved the point. Where did all that sand go? not under the Boardwalk but, down Ocean Parkway. The same could be said about the ocean which flooded many areas. With a Boardwalk, the water would have seeped under the wood causing very little damage.

What impresses me greatly about both councilmen is that they want to hear the concerns of residents. The former Coney Island councilmen wanted a concrete Boardwalk and his Brighton Beach counterpart allowed over-development in the bungalow district. Had there not been a three-term administration, thanks to former Mayor Mike Bloomberg things would have been more to the liking of both communities and we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

We dream of the day when there will be an all-wood Boardwalk — the way it used to be.Jerry Sattler and Solomon Rafalosky

Brighton Beach

• • •

To the editor,

Until the day when the Parks Department can make simple repairs and corrections to dangers on the Coney Island Boardwalk, including split wood, raised nails and screws, and big gaps, we cannot eliminate the concept of going concrete to sections of the footpath. Why is the agency not able to make simple repairs that are so obvious and so easy to fix? If someone tells me that they are able to and have authority to make these repairs I will say shame on them, but I do not think for one moment that this is the case. How could it be, when people are tripping and falling all over the place and sustaining injuries and some very serious, like the one I had? I know the Parks workers to be responsible and hard working and always on the ball cleaning up after sloppy and filthy beachgoers. They saved Coney Island by working nonstop for so many months after Hurricane Sandy. It was no easy task if you saw what things looked like then. But how many more beachgoers must get hurt before we give more authority and power to Parks workers to make these simple fixes? We don’t need a whole entire team of Norms from “This Old House” to fix a plank of wood sticking up.

The political discussions I am reading about from newly elected politicians is to stop the insanity of concreting everything and hopefully an intelligent and comprehensive solution will result from this debate. Winning this battle to me means agreeing to an attractive and easily obtainable wood, and doing so without destroying our rainforest. Beachgoers want to feel that a visit to a local beach is easy, convenient, relaxing, and safe. Let’s make this work the right way — it is not a difficult and complicated job.

Ronald H. Kriegel

Coney Island

God Bless America

To the editor,

I am unhappy that folks who attended the lovely concert at Marine Park did not have the chance to collectively recite the Pledge of Allegiance or sing “God Bless America” at the concert’s end.

I believe the pledge serves to unite our people. If it’s good enough to be said at ball games, it surely is good enough to be said at our community gatherings.

Nobody’s arm would’ve been twisted if he or she wished not to join in, but for the faithful majority, the emotional patriotic surge was missed. That may sound silly to some, but I, for one, have tears in my eyes whenever I hear or sing “God Bless America,” remembering my uncles and one aunt returning from the war in 1945 and 1946, and the glorious homecoming my family gave them. God Bless America.Joan Mangano

Mill Basin

Crime & education

To the editor,

Your article “Jailhouse librarian pens book about dispensing prose in the pokey” (online May 9) was an interesting read, but it could transport the minds of some readers into cloud land. To construe that if every child was taught how to be a better person and to read books then perhaps they won’t turn out to be criminals is usually not the case.

Offenders can be college graduates, but still prefer a life of crime because the sick desire to be hurtful to others.

Every profession has its share of criminals who use their abilities in twisted ways that hinder the safety and lives of good people. But there are also lots of youngsters and adults who have aspirations to do great deeds, if only they were taught how to implement their goals. Books and stellar educators can make all the difference. Moreover people with cognitive disabilities must be given the opportunity to make their mark.Amy Kaye

Sheepshead Bay

Joke street

To the editor,

The sidewalks in Brooklyn are in bad shape. The city fixes the ones that don’t need to be fixed and leaves the bad ones untouched. It’s a joke. They also don’t pave the streets well — another joke.Dennis Olsen

Sheepshead Bay

Gotham first

To the editor,

Mayor DeBlasio is to be commended for suggesting that the 2016 Democratic National Convention be brought here (“DeBlasio: Bring DNC to Brooklyn, or some other part of New York,” online April 24).

I hope it will be carried out because it would be the first time in American history that such a convention was held in Brooklyn. It would be a tonic to our economy and a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow after Hurricanes Irene and Sandy.

The state has welshed in giving the city its fair share of revenue for sorely needed programs, and it is up to the mayor and the City Council to make sure the money brought to Brooklyn is spent wisely.

When the city faced a fiscal crisis in the past, other states would not have minded if we had become insolvent, inspite of the fact that we give aid to them after tornados and floods. What needs to be remembered is that if New York City fails, we all fail.

Elliott Abosh

Brighton Beach

Damn Bam

To the editor,

Sadly, our United States is unraveling; it’s being destroyed. President Obama so loves the poor, he is creating millions more.

June Petrocelli

Mill Basin

Capitol ‘Hill’

To the editor,

So Hillary Clinton is flying across the nation pushing the sale of her new book. During a recent TV interview she admitted that when the Clintons left the White House, the family’s finances were mismanaged and in a shambles. They were in debt, owing in excess of $12 million.

Now she is running for the highest office in the land and wants to handle “your” taxes and the American government finances. And you are voting for her to be president?

Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park

‘They won’

To the editor,

Much of the political scuttlebutt of the day is about winning or maligning “others” — rarely, if ever, is it about presenting intelligent ideas and solutions that actually pertain to the wants and needs of the citizenry, whom politicians office are sworn to serve.

I watched the ceremony for the 9-11 memorial museum’s opening with tears in my heart and eyes, and I thought to myself that “they” won. The unabashed and undeniable loss of freedoms and privacy in the U.S. since 9-11 speaks to the fears that the terrorists hoped to instill in the spirit of the country, and so, they indeed won.

One example is the mere existence and intense growth of the likes of the National Security Agency tells me that “they” won. The winners also include many one-percenters of the controlling class, along with their larger-than-life corporate partners. There are many positive and wonderful examples of their work in giving back to society, but the evil-doers are gaining traction and over-the-top influence within our federal and state governments, and it is downright scary.

Another example is the debate between the Federal Communications Commission and the government known as net neutrality — another significant attempt to control by corralling and snooping upon everyone via the internet.

Technological advances in the form of computer and mobile devices that rely on a handful of global communication entities does not honor, let alone protect, our privacy. Instead, they herd all that we are, and do, and share via these devices and service providers into neatly stored meta-data streams in perfectly cooled data centers around the country and globe.

The differences between the “outsider” terrorists as defined by the perpetrators of the 9-11 horrors, and the now-largely expanded homegrown terrorists have faded. Please, everyone, vote. Vote in every election, and vote with your head and heart for I do believe that if we follow our heart and spirit that we will vote for humanity and fairness for all.

Yes, I was tearfully moved watching the museum dedication, but the tears were for the immense loss of life, the destruction, and for the sad changes to our way of life. “They” won.Barry Brothers

Homecrest

Posted 12:00 am, July 6, 2014
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