Sound Off to the Editor

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To the editor,

I have no sympathy whatsoever for the Palestinian hooligan who accidentally set himself ablaze while attempting to hurl a Molotov cocktail at our Jewish people in Israel. This poor excuse for a human being got exactly what he deserved.

We don’t hear one word from the United Nations regarding these vicious attacks on Israelis. Why not? Don’t Jewish lives matter, as well? Isn’t this a violation of human rights? It would have been nice for the Democratic candidates to comment on what is occurring at their recent debate. Why are questions regarding Israel rarely brought up at these debates?

I was also unaware that President Obama appointed Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, as roving ambassador to Israel. Two years ago she went to Ramallah to find common ground with Palestinian teachers. A lot of good that did. When she left, young children read anti-Semitic poetry. Randi was recently in Israel again, claiming that the violence must stop, but that a two-state solution must happen and that the “occupation” must end. What planet is this woman on? The militants don’t want a two-state solution. They want Israel to disappear and the Jewish people dead. Why can’t these ultra liberals get it through their thick heads?

Ed Greenspan

Sheepshead Bay

Fallen Finest

To the editor,

The black bunting is up and flags are at half-staff, saluting yet another fallen police officer, Randy Holder. The mayor feigns outrage at the low-life scum that did this heinous act, although it is a result of the liberal policies of his party along with the ultra-liberal judges and lawyers, who care too much for the criminals, and less for the public servants and the public in general.

This skell had a rap sheet longer than the Marine Park and still this trash was roaming the streets, free to rob, maim, and kill. The criminal population rotates freely in and out of the court system, because the rap sheet of previous crimes is hidden. Most of the violent offenders get off with a slap on the wrist when they deserve a long sentence in lock up. Maybe a sea of change in these liberal policies is in order to get this element off the city streets, but don’t hold your breath!

The tears of Officer Holder’s mother abounded, as she cried for Mayor DeBlasio to reinstate the stringent stop-and-frisk rules that could have saved the life of her son and dozens of others. Failing this, sadly, I can only foresee additional bunting being purchased, as the killings go on and on.

Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park


To the editor,

We always think of members of a motorcycle club as being bad people. Well the other week on television, I saw a show about a motorcycle club dealing with troubled children.

What a big surprise when they mentioned how they help children having emotional problems, taking them to court, being a friend to them, and helping them with school. Since some of the children came from abusive families, they really appreciated the support from both the men and women members. These children bonded with them, and were given rides on their bikes which put a happy smile on their faces.

We have the Police Athletic League that also mentors young children, keeping them out of trouble and being a positive role model. I do believe if more organizations would get involved, life for many children would be more fruitful. We need to do this to create a more humane society.Jerry Sattler

Brighton Beach

War and peace

To the editor,

How strange it seems that President Obama, soon after taking office, was given the Nobel Peace Prize. In my memory I have never heard of such a thing.

So we’ve gone through years and years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and what have we achieved? Nothing but death and destruction in both countries. How about the men and women soldiers coming back with missing arms and legs, plus many who developed post-traumatic stress disorder? One mother mentioned her son left a normal life and came back a killer. How sad that so many sacrificed their lives. So many of these soldiers have developed severe mental disorders, due to war.

Let’s not forget the drone strikes that have taken the lives of many innocent civilians, plus the Doctors Without Borders. Time after time they put their lives at risk to help save the victims of war. To me any apology of any kind is worthless.

We still have war, despite our president being given the Noble Peace Prize. He should return it, and donate any money he received to Doctors Without Borders for their life-saving work.

Name withheld upon request


To the editor,

It never ceases to amaze me how the Metropolitan Transportation Authority — claiming to be cash-strapped and always on the verge of bankruptcy — can immediately come up with a half-billion dollars for the proposed bike paths on the Verrazano Bridge. If it does go forward with this lunacy, the above figure will surely triple. When a proposal for toll discounts for southwest Brooklyn drivers who use the bridge was aired, the agency immediately said budgetary constraints would not permit even a slight discount. So where are the budgetary constraints, now?

Bicyclists in this city are pandered to right and left, and at no cost to them. They repay the city’s goodwill by disobeying every traffic law on the books and are never penalized. Back to the bridge, the M.T.A. has not made a decision yet about if the bikes will have pay a toll to cross the bridge. What? Why not? Oh, that’s right, it can add another buck to the drivers’ tolls. Richie Hecht

Bay Ridge


To the editor,

This is the third time since Social Security has been in existence that there is no cost-of-living adjustment increase, and all three times have been under the same president. Not only will there be no increase, but Medicare Part B premium will increase from $104.90 to $159.30. That’s a 52 percent increase. Also, starting the last quarter of 2016, they’re talking about cutting disability checks by 19 percent.

Hey President Obama, here’s an idea: Instead of punishing those of us who worked all our lives and contributed into the system, but can no longer do so due to retirement or illness, make cuts to the welfare system and let those who are too lazy to work — or mothers who keep having multiple kids with different men and whom we wind up paying for — take the hit!

Andrew Feinstein

Sheepshead Bay

‘Insightful’ Stan

To the editor,

Allow me to add to the always insightful Stanley P. Gershbein (“It’s Hillary, or the socialist or Biden,” It’s Only My Opinion, Oct. 16). Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said at the Democratic debate, “It is our job to rein in the excesses of capitalism.” This theme was echoed by the four other candidates. Missing was any discussion about reining in government excesses in the areas of taxation, regulations, deficit spending, excessive borrowing, waste, fraud and abuse of federal expenditures all of which impact both our economic and civil liberties.

The discussion reminded me of five barkers on a summer night at the midway of a county fair. Each tried to outdo the others in redistribution of the wealth from the haves to the have-nots. Their respective sales pitches were providing the most goodies as a way to entice voters to come over to their political tent.

Only Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-V.T.) was honest enough to admit he is a “democratic socialist” in the Scandinavian European model. The other four shared his views on most issues, but would not come out of the closet. They hide behind the liberal and progressive labels. There is no longer any room in the Democratic Party for those who followed more moderate, mainstream Democrats, such as the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan of New York, Sen. Scoop Jackson of Washington, and Sen. Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut.

Just as conservatives have captured the Republican Party, Democratic socialists or those who prefer the liberal or progressive label have control of the Democratic Party. A majority of Americans who consider themselves moderates or independents have no party representing them.Larry Penner

Great Neck, N.Y.

‘Useless’ agencies

To the editor,

Of all the city, state, and federal agencies, I admire the National Transportation Safety Board the most because whenever there is a major plane crash, a train derailment or a tragic highway crash, they put 100 percent into their investigation on what caused the accident.

Never once have they sugarcoated the cause of an accident. Although it may take many months of a year or two for their conclusions, they often make recommendations that in the future will save countless lives.

When has the Department of Transportation ever listened to the concerns of the residents about any changes being made? How about never. Another useless city agency is the Parks Department. When there was an outcry about putting concrete on the Boardwalk, Parks claimed it was easier to maintain and that there was no way to get rainforest wood. What they never mentioned was that the design commission stated that recycled wood from out of state could be used just as easily.

Both these city agencies are deaf to the public’s concerns, so why do we even need them?

Solomon Rafelowsky

Brighton Beach

Frankly, Jerome

To the editor,

Jerome Frank seems to think I favor the upper one percent of Americans that achieved their wealth through hard work and a drive to do better (“Income inequality,” Sound off to the Editor, Oct. 16).

Maybe in his case, his attitude and the attitude of so many people who bemoan the fact that they are not rich are self-repressing them to the lower rungs of society.

My family emigrated from Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, and other European states prior to 1900. Nothing was handed to them on a silver platter. They knew that to succeed in the new land, they had to learn its language and get together, getting their hands dirty, to scratch a living out of whatever they chose to do.

I pride myself, in some little way, of championing the rights of the workers, as I once was a vice president in a local union. During my tenure I learned a lot of the so-called one percent versus the 99 percenters. I saw how the different attitudes of the workers determined how far they progressed or regressed through the ranks. Those individuals with a sense of drive and determination climbed the ladder of success, ultimately leaving the ranks for management positions. Those with an attitude, a socialist-communist attitude of I-deserve-everything, were always in trouble with the boss, calling upon me and others in the union to help bail them out.

I invite Jerome to learn the true history of his favored socialist parties and understand that even with them, there was an upper one-percent-plus crust of political hacks enjoying a very good living while the people, under their tutelage, were the true working “slaves of the state.”

Capitalism ain’t perfect, but at least under its reign and our hard-fought-for-and-won American freedoms, one has a chance to stand up, excel, and achieve a higher income and attitude status.

Robert W. Lobenstein

Marine Park

‘Weakened’ Chuck

To the editor,

I am not surprised that according to a recent poll conducted by Quinnipiac University, Sen. Charles Schumer’s (D-N.Y.) most recent favorable approval rating is down to 52 percent. This represents his lowest approval ratings since May 2000.

There are two reasons for this decline: One, like the cowardly lion from the Land of Oz, Schumer came out against the proposed treaty with Iran, but with a wink and nod to President Obama refused to lobby his fellow senators in joining him to oppose the treaty. Many Jewish and non-Jewish friends of Israel are not happy with his abdication of leadership on this issue.

Two, since 1981 under Schumer’s watch as both a congressmember and senator our national debt went up by $17.4 trillion, increasing from $1 trillion in 1981 to $18.4 trillion, today. No wonder Schumer never talks about this at his standard Sunday news conferences. It is nothing to be proud of.

Besides conservatives and Republicans, many mainstream moderate Democrats and independent voters are not happy with his fiscal mismanagement of Washington. Younger voters who will have to pay off this debt are especially displeased.

Schumer faced unknown Republican challengers with no-name recognition, money or party support in 2004 (Howard Mills) and 2010 (Jay Townsend). New York Republicans now have a surprising opportunity in 2016. Given Schumer’s weakened poll numbers, perhaps a brave Republican candidate with both name recognition and the financial resources to offer a serious alternative will finally step forward to challenge him in 2016. It might make for an interesting contest as opposed to another Schumer coronation.

If New York Republicans give Schumer a free ride for the third time, he will be free to run around the nation in 2016 assisting other fellow Democrats running for the Senate. Democrats only need a net pick up of five seats to regain control of the Senate. Schumer will use his well-oiled, pay-for-play fundraising machine — he already has $20 million in the bank for his 2016 race with no announced opponent — to raise whatever it takes, be it $100 million or more, so he can become the Democratic Senate majority leader.Larry Penner

Great Neck, N.Y.

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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