Readers go back and forth over Ocean Parkway traffic changes

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To the editor,

What a brilliant idea, to ban left turns from certain streets on Ocean Parkway. I wonder who the genius is that thought of that. After all, why give up left turn lanes and signals that seem to be working just fine? It was probably the same person who turned Times Square into a horrible sleazy mess, took away traffic lanes, made bike lanes that are hardly used, and put in racks for hundreds of Citi Bikes.

Why not force traffic onto a one-lane service road with parking on both sides? When school buses are there — and they will be — traffic will come to a standstill, cars will be stuck in the middle of a turn, and cars will be backed up to Hoboken! It might take three of four lights to actually make a turn to get onto Ocean Parkway to cross over, but that’s okay, people don’t have anything else to do.

The people who actually live on the service road will be thrilled to have all the traffic, exhaust, and honking.

This should never be allowed to happen.

And to think, someone is actually getting paid big bucks to think of this.Rowena Lachant


• • •

To the editor,

In response to [Allen Rosen’s] letter criticizing my letter about traffic in South Brooklyn (“Readers: Embrace the open road” published Dec. 23), I admit that I have never worked for the Department of Transportation and do not drive. I do not presume to know all the solutions to pedestrian and driver safety on Ocean Parkway and Coney Island Avenue. I do know that, despite attempts by the Department of Transportation to lessen our traffic problems, these problems have only gotten worse throughout the years.

I have been writing from a pedestrian’s point of view, but I have also been a passenger in buses, friends’ cars, and taxis. I admit to getting annoyed whenever we get stuck in traffic. However, I get much more upset when I see smashed cars on the road and ambulances carrying injured drivers and passengers to the hospital.

Mr. Rosen, if you have any solutions for improving the traffic situation here in Brooklyn, I would love to hear them. I personally believe that slowness and safety is preferable to speed and accidents.

As I write this, I realize that we now have a new menace on the roads that we didn’t have when I moved here 38 years ago: cellphones. I sometimes wonder if drivers speeding through traffic lights really see the lights, or are they too busy talking or texting on their phones to even see them? I know this is another problem DOT has tried to fix, but, judging from the number of accidents occurring each month, DOT needs to do a much better job of policing the roads and enforcing traffic regulations.

I agree, Mr. Rosen, that safety is a two-way street, but drivers who text while driving won’t see me or other pedestrians, even if we wear bright orange clothing and carry flashlights. Safety has to begin with drivers who are alert and obey traffic signals, and pedestrians who are alert and observe drivers and signals — and also do not use cellphones on the street. Safety takes two — the driver and the pedestrian.Elaine Kirsch


Cook-ing the books

To the editor,

I would like to comment on several letters in the Dec. 16 edition. I agree with Mr. Lobenstein that there should be an investigation of the hacking (“Buncha Hacks”). In addition, I agree that we should go back to using the lever voting machines.

In his second letter, he mentions that school children do no know who John Glenn was (“Glenn’s a true hero”). I am sure they know who Lady Gaga is. A real sad commentary on our eduction system.

In his letter (“History repeats”), Elliot Abbosh does not give all the facts. He omitted several facts. I will discuss them. He claims the voter recounts were to detect fraud. No, they were to check for accuracy. He mentions that Kennedy won by 118,000 votes but does not specify if that was nationwide of just Illinois. He also mentions Cook County, Ill. as a state in question. Clearly there were fraudulent votes in that county. There were also fraudulent votes cast in Republican parts of Illinois. Neither one changed the election. Kennedy received 303 electoral votes when 270 are required. Illinois had 27 votes. Kennedy would have won without Illinois. It has also been proven that the military votes in California which gave Nixon their electoral votes shaded in his favor.

I have been dismayed as how many allegedly knowledgeable political historians on all sides of the aisle say the fraud in Illinois is why Kennedy was elected.Alan Podhaizer

Brighton Beach

Charter schools

To the editor,

As parents of fifth-grade students all over New York City can tell you, applying to middle school is a lot like applying to colleges. Only, in many cases the acceptance rates are even lower.

That’s why having as many good options as possible is increasingly important for parents and their children.

That was certainly true in our case. This time two years ago, my son Cameron’s mother and I were looking at a number of different middle schools. We toured and applied to a long list of district, charter, magnet, and independent schools in our neighborhood. We had no preconceived notions of the “type” of school he should attend. In fact, we didn’t even think about it. Our only requirements were that the school have a strong track record and be a good fit for Cameron’s adaptive, creative learning style.

Ultimately, we chose Brooklyn Prospect Charter School (BPCS) over a district alternative. Immediately, we fell in love with its approach.

Cameron loves being challenged to learn. He’s an avid reader whose attendance record last year was nearly perfect. At BPCS, he takes advanced math and is learning Mandarin. He joined the Student Council and National Junior Honor Society.

To hear many politicians and pundits tell it, charter schools are something alien, a threat to public education. But for us, a school’s label as “charter” or “district” was much less important than the quality of the education it provided. We know that’s also true for many other families going through this process in Brooklyn. All I know is that after an honest and thorough search, my son now attends a public charter school that meets his needs and helps him grow.

Perspectives like mine are seldom heard from in the citywide conversation on education policy. But I suspect that a lot of the people most affected by the outcome of these debates are like me: deeply invested in my child’s future, and not interested in ideologies or institutional debates. Securing a great public education for kids like Cameron is the real prize — not scoring political points.

With Cameron graduating middle school next year, it’s time for his mother and I to make another informed decision. I can’t say I’m looking forward to more rounds of open houses and application writing — especially during basketball season. But I am looking forward to counting BPCS and other charter schools among my choices.

Dr. Manly Romero


Letter submitted by New York City Charter School Center

Weak ‘snowflakes’

To the editor,

I though I’d heard it all!

After the election, thousands of “snowflakes” that couldn’t stand the thought of a Trump presidency bolted for their psychiatri­sts’ offices and pet centers where therapy dogs offered a modicum of comfort to those poor weak souls.

Today I’ve heard it all — at the New York airports, therapy dogs are bounding amongst the tourists to offer comfort to the harried traveler.


I can clearly see, with each new report, why the Russians and other countries laugh at us. I am ashamed to note that we have become weak, lily-livered bags of flesh that cannot stand up to the day-to-day rigors or ordinary life.

I expect, as time goes by, that therapy dogs and crying towels will be offered to those standing on those long lines at Macy’s and Wal-Mart during the holiday shopping season.

They just can’t take it anymore. Boo hooo!Robert Lobenstein

Marine Park

UN suck-urity council

To the editor,

This latest UN Security Council vote may go down the path of Neville Chamberlain’s Peace in Our Time in 1938.

Russia and China along with Venezuela proposing this? The hypocrisy is unreal. The latter three have engaged in numerous human-rights violations and nothing is said. What did Israel ever do to Malaysia and New Zealand to deserve this? We should begin a boycott of all nations concerned along with England and France.

Since the resolution talks about 1949 lines, why can’t we use the Balfour Declaration of 1917 as a wedge against it? According to the document, Jews can no longer pray at the Western Wall. Is praying an act of hostility by the Jewish people?

It has been said that the Lord works in mysterious ways. Perhaps the election of Donald Trump can deter this disaster of a resolution.

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Thanks for nothing, Obama

To the editor,

As Obama prepares to leave his failed presidency, his biggest concern is tying loose ends. As I write this, he is scurrying to release the Islamic terrorists housed in Guantanamo Bay and to pardon or commute the sentences of prisoners in U.S. jails who have committed crimes against society. This, along with his eighth-year failed stint as Ideologue-in-Chief defined the American voters’ choice on November 8.

As for Obama’s legacy, there is none. A legacy is reserved for one who has performed good deeds for country, people and humanity, in general. Obama has done none of the above. It is his failure that woke up the sleeping giant, known as “working-class America” whose members took their revenge on an incompetent crooked bungler known simply by “Hillary,” much like “Elvis” or “Liberace,” except that the latter two gave us pleasure, while the former gave us grief.

The Democratic consortium is crying, refusing to accept president-elect Donald J. Trump’s victory. The denial core wept, protested and even threatened the Electors that voted on December 19. In addition to crying and refusing to accept the results of the election, the younger in-denial consortium (America’s future “leaders”) was provided with psychiatric help, play dough and puppies by their colleges and universities. If that wasn’t enough, those colleges and universities declared their higher order of learning institution “sanctuary dwellings” where illegal aliens can either study or hide from the law.

Hillary Clinton lost due to a multitude of reasons, among those: She is not a well-liked pweson and she is properly viewed as distrustful, with a personality comparable to that of a piece of lint. She, Bill and Chelsea made a conscious decision to use Hillary’s Department of State position to solicit money from near and far for favors when elected president — and she destroyed the e-mails that would implicate her. She refused to provide reinforcements during the Benghazi Islamic attack, causing four American deaths, which she later lied about. In addition to the above, the Hillary Clinton’s sleaze spans some four decades, all without consequence – until now. Voters accomplished what four decades of law enforcement could not accomplish: Indict and convict Hillary – but in a court of public opinion – and deny her the presidency.

Still, an irrelevant Jill Stein who received some 1 percent of the popular vote demanded a recount in which Mr. Trump picked up more votes. But that wasn’t enough; Democrats threatened the Electors, with Michael Moore offering to bribe some of them. After the Electors soundly rejected Hillary, Obama blamed the loss on Russian and WikiLeaks hacking, FBI Director James Comey’s disclosure that Hillary is a crook (we all knew that) and I’m sure many other factors that we don’t know of yet. I’m surprised that Obama did not Blame George W. Bush.

So it’s over. On January 6, in a joint session of Congress, Joe Biden will unseal the Electors’ results of all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia and pronounce Donald trump the victor. Still, the usual suspects are hard at work to throw a monkey wrenche into the 45th President’s plans to “Make America Great Again.” To those inclined to waste the next four years to hurt America, I have a message: Donald Trump was elected because Obama, with your help, failed and America was going into an abyss in which it might never recover: A $20T debt, slow economic growth and few jobs along with a depleted military, a stronger and emboldened enemy with a nuclear Iran and an open southern border,

With President Trump, we, at least, have a chance. Do any of you understand that? Probably, not!

Elio Valenti

Brooklyn, NY

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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