Sound Off To The Editor

To the editor,

Absolutely ridiculous to give all New York City students free lunch. Those students whose parents can readily afford to pay for their children’s lunch should do so. By doing this, we are setting up a real welfare state. To avoid children being stigmatized for being eligible for free lunch, this problem could easily be solved by assigning all students computerized cards indicating privately which child is eligible for free lunch and those who are not.

Each time a child who was not eligible for free lunch gets lunch, the parents would be billed via credit card with all money due by the end of the month. No one would know except the family, the child and the school officials, who should pay and who should not.

Anyway, what sort of lunches continue to be served? Just recently we heard of contaminated chicken being given away to the homeless shelters. When I taught, students received the worst possible food imaginable. I would liked to have invited in school officials into school cafeterias for them to get a whiff of what was being sold. On days when frankfurters and beans were served, you had to walk away from the stench. The food served was unfit for human consumption. They had the nerve to call this nutritious?

So let’s see. The taxpayers will have to pay for lunches for all children. Only our so called progressive leaders would favor this system. As stated, we’re creating a welfare state and the federal government should step in to stop this outrage.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Bridge fan

To the editor,

The construction on the new Belt Parkway-Mill Basin Bridge (overpass?) is continuing at a rapid rate. Over this weekend I, and many others, got to see the work close up when the venerable old Mill Basin drawbridge opened for boat traffic underneath.

The new road looks to be a world-class highway with glistening concrete ribbons of roadway sweeping up and over the creek below. Like its cousins, the new Tappan Zee Bridge and the Kosciuszko, It will partially open to traffic, I’m told, in 2018, carrying the six lanes of vehicles while the old bridge is razed and work completed for additional lanes on the new span.

This old drawbridge has been in faithful service since Robert Moses designed and built our parkway system in the 1930s. It has caused many a traveler over the past decades, driving everything from the Model T to the latest luxury vehicle from Germany, fits when it opened for boat traffic, thus stopping all movement on the parkway.

I believe that it is the very last of the drawbridges on our parkway system to be replaced. Wouldn’t it be nice if our community paper, serving this area, does a nice article on the history of his bridge with interviews of the operators? (Anyone but the talking heads and politicians). Anyone traveling across the bridge would look back with a tinge of sadness, though bolstered by happiness, that the old bridge is gone, never to open again, giving everyone pause during his or her travels!Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park

More kindness

To the editor,

I felt inspired by reading this article (“Hero Dad Jumps In,” Harbor Watch, Sept. 1 edition) about a courageous Marine! What a welcome relief from all the drama and sensationalist news! Please print more stories of the indomitable human spirit. We need to practice more random acts of kindness.

By the way, I was privileged to save someone’s life by doing the Heimlich maneuver while at a gathering. It’s an indescribable, awesome feeling! Unknowingly, my future husband and mother-in-law were at this gathering, witnessing this event!

So, I encourage all the readers and their loved ones to take a first aid course and learn the Heimlich maneuver and CPR like that Marine did! You never know when it’ll come in handy. Anoxia sets in after four minutes of oxygen deprivation, so quick action and know how are of paramount importance!Shoshana


Help mom and pop

To the editor,

In this economic climate it is difficult enough for mom-and-pop retail stores to survive (“Taking mom and pop to court: Lawyers using federal law to serially sue local small businesses” by Colin Mixson, online Aug. 25). One has only to look at the number of vacancies on Fifth and Seventh avenues to understand this. They don’t need a handicapped person with a chip on his shoulder from Queens trying to extort money from them.

As a handicapped old person I relish the mom-and-pop restaurants and shops in my neighborhood and have found their owners helpful and accommodating. I resent a handicapped man with an attitude trying to close these stores.

A vibrant retail street benefits a neighborhood. So what if I can’t go into every store? Not every store can be reconfigured easily to meet Mr. Torres’s specifications, and I do just fine. Mr. Torres should get over himself.Bob

Park Slope

Have a burger

To the editor,

Why not participate in National Cheeseburger Day, on Monday, Sept. 18? Ignore all Health Food Police rants about how unhealthy hamburgers are. Treat yourself and go to your favorite fast food, diner, restaurant or steak house and order a cheeseburger. Pile on the toppings including cheese, sauteed onions, tomatoes, pickles and whatever else suites your fancy. Don’t forget your side order of French fries. Hamburgers and fries are an authentic American tradition that should continue to be celebrated all year around.

In these difficult economic times, it is especially important to patronize your local fast food, diner, restaurant or steak house.

My wife and I don’t mind occasionally paying a little more to help our local businesses survive. Don’t forget your cook and server at your favorite local neighborhood restaurant. We try to tip 20 percent against the total bill including taxes. If it is an odd amount, we round up to the next dollar. If we can afford to eat out, we can afford an extra dollar tip. When ordering take-out, we always leave a dollar or two for the waiter or cook. It is appreciated.

Remember these people are our neighbors. Our local entrepreneurs have continued to create new employment opportunities without the assistance of federally-funded taxpayers’ stimulus dollars. They work long hours, pay taxes and provide local employment. If we don’t patronize our local restaurants, they don’t eat either.Larry Penner

Long Island

He’s in

Acting District Attorney Eric Gonzalez is now Kings County’s District Attorney, after blowing his rival Democrats out of the water in Tuesday’s primary election that saw no Republicans compete for the seat (“Eric Gonzalez wins DA Democratic primary, vows to continue predecessor’s progressive legacy,” by Julianne Cuba, online Sept. 13).

Gonzalez was predicted to remain the chief legal eagle — he received the most prominent endorsements, amassed the biggest war chest, and enjoyed the advantages of incumbency. But many questioned whether he is a true reformer who would follow in the footsteps of his late predecessor, Ken Thompson, a staunch advocate of overturning wrongful convictions.

Here are the comments of some post-primary, Wednesday morning quarterbacks:

Criminals are dancing in the streets tonight. Close jails, eliminate bail, let people pee all over the streets, let muggers jump turnstiles to rob victims in the subway. Get ready to live in East Chicago until enough people get mugged and come to their senses.Henry Ford from Bay Ridge

Come meet the new boss, same as the old boss.Jim from Cobble Hill

“Progressive.” Really?Bob Scott from Brooklyn Heights

Did this guy win for promising to not follow to most laws? As we know, the competition was who would observe the least number of laws. Good for this guy. Laws are repressive. We’re all progressive! I’m going to celebrate his victory by knocking over a Christopher Columbus statue.Garth from Fort Greene

If you don’t prosecute, then you can point out that “crime is down” Neat Trick!

Rufus Leaking from BH

Reach James Harney at (718) 260-2529 or e-mail him at jharney@cnglocal.com.

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