Today’s news:

Tish: Duffield St co-name could save historic homes

The Brooklyn Paper

To the editor,

I’m concerned that your recent editorial got the purpose of the co-naming of Duffield Street as Abolitionist Place dead wrong (“Sad irony on Duffield,” Sept. 22).

It is my hope that by recognizing Duffield Street, Brooklynites will continue to celebrate our ancestors, both black and white, who risked their lives to fight slavery.

Also, I want to make it very clear that my office, and other offices of elected officials and community leaders, will not allow Mayor Bloomberg to simply make an empty symbolic gesture while it continues to pursue the condemnation of historic homes.

My criticism of the Bloomberg Administration about its treatment of Duffield Street is well known, and I have filed an affidavit with the Supreme Court in support of Families United for Racial and Economic Equality, as well as homeowner Joy Chatel.

Both my constituents and I object to development that deprives future generations knowledge about our country’s involvement with the institution of slavery.

I agree with The Brooklyn Paper that a museum on Duffield Street would serve in the best interests of all New Yorkers. History does matter, and the real history of the Duffield Street homes must be told.

I thank The Brooklyn Paper for highlighting the history of the Underground Railroad in Downtown Brooklyn, and for all The Paper does in fighting to protect the soul of Brooklyn against overdevelopment.

Letitia James, Fort Greene

The writer is a City Councilwoman.

Editor’s note: We’re not sure why the Councilwoman thinks our editorial was “dead wrong” when she ended up agreeing with all its main points.

• • •

To the editor,

I’d still like the Long Island Expressway to be renamed for Harriet Tubman. I believe it is still available for naming. Think big.

Don Wiss, Park Slope

Eat your words!

To the editor,

Your obituary of “Brooklyn Eats” is premature (“Brooklyn Eats bites the dust,” Sept. 22). To the contrary, “Brooklyn Eats” is alive and well fed.

For the last 10 years, the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce’s “Brooklyn Eats” initiative has been the premier event showcasing and promoting the borough’s best restaurants and up-and-coming eateries. The Chamber has no intention of discontinuing these efforts now.

But, like any other economic development organization worth its salt, the Chamber is making sure that “Brooklyn Eats” responds to the needs of a changing market and the dining public.

The Chamber is working with our participant restaurants, supporters and sponsors to present “Brooklyn Eats” in the upcoming months.

We hope The Brooklyn Paper will be there to cover it.

Carl Hum, Downtown

The writer is president and CEO of the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce

It’s a crime!

To the editor,

I was dismayed to read an article in The Paper that mistakenly informed readers that drugs and drug-related crime have returned to Downtown Brooklyn (“Downtown faces drug woes,” Sept. 22).

The piece’s inappropriate headline makes it appear as if crime has returned to Downtown, but in fact the direct opposite is true.

Through a cooperative effort between the NYPD and the MetroTech Business Improvement District and the Fulton Mall Improvement Association, over the past 16 years, crime in Downtown Brooklyn has dropped more than 80 percent, as compared to 75 percent for that same period citywide.

Michael Weiss, Downtown

The writer is executive director of the MetroTech Business Improvement District and Fulton Mall Improvement Association

Editor’s note: The second sentence of the story to which Weiss refers called Downtown “a once-crime-ridden area that has seen massive decreases in violence in recent years.”

Poly wanna?

To the editor,

I think that Polytechnic and New York University should bond like crazy glue, quickly and forever (“Don’t do it! Poly alumni: Resist urge to merge,” Sept. 15).

I have participated in both alumni conference calls regarding the merger and concluded that we alumni need to support it. Then I read in your paper that the Poly Alumni Association is opposed to it! This makes we feel violated by the people who are suppose to represent me. What audacity!

It appears that regardless of the logic in President Jerry Hultin’s arguments for the merger, the Alumni Association’s position remains antagonistic, selfish and illogical. I never thought these traits existed in a Poly graduate.

In today’s competitive environment, one has to made decisions quickly and take advantage of fleeting opportunities. President Hultin is a true visionary.

Resisting the merger is not only ludicrous, it is futile.

Ray Turner, Downtown

Ooh, that smell

To the editor,

We read with dismay the recent article about the Newtown Creek Nature Walk (“Something stinks — hey, it’s this park!” Sept. 22).

Unfortunately, with the Greenpoint waterfront rezoning, waterfront properties are rapidly being priced out of our reach and it is only within these innovative mixed-use zones that long-time Greenpoint residents will gain access to the waterfront.

The Newtown Creek Monitoring Committee is likewise sickened by the recent odors and we have been aggressively pursuing the Department of Environmental Protection to address the causes, just as we have been working for the last 10 years to ensure that odor controls, via tank covers and enclosed buildings, as well odor treatment systems are installed on as many odor sources as possible.

Some of these odor controls are in place now — some are not — largely due to extended construction delays. But the Nature Walk will be a tremendous community amenity. Every opportunity for open space must be seized.

Moreover, the Nature Walk will ensure that there are people to watch Newtown Creek; those eyes — and noses — will prevent future impacts and enable the continued revitalization of the creek.

Christine Holowacz, Greenpoint

The writer is a member of the Newtown Creek Monitoring Committee.

Wants Wal-Mart

To the editor,

I am all for the idea of a Wal-Mart store in Downtown because it is a shopping area for many New Yorkers (“Wal-Mart is not dead yet,” Brooklyn Heights–Downtown edition and online, May 19).

Merchants are afraid of the competition that Wal-Mart will bring, but as a shopper, I will support this store 100 percent.

Evita Worley, Spring Creek

Co-op spirit

To the editor,

Although some members of the Park Slope Food Co-op did object to the Co-op accepting credit cards based on the problem of excessive debt in our society, it was not the main reason (“Food Co-op back to future,” Park Slope Edition and online, Sept. 29).

The discussion on that aspect of credit cards never progressed very far because of the fact of the excessive transaction fees that merchants who accept credit cards must pay.

Once we understood those costs, discussion on all other aspects of the issue became irrelevant.

One of the main reasons the Co-op was founded in 1973 was to make excellent quality food as affordable as possible to as many as possible and that has not changed.

Accepting credit cards would have forced us to raise prices whereas accepting pin-based ATM cards do not.

Joe Holtz, Park Slope

The writer is general manager of the Park Slope Food Co-op

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