WWW.QNS.COM RIDGEWOOD TIMES AUGUST 15, 2019 13
OP-ED LETTERS AND COMMENTS
BOTH SIDES ARE
The political tone in this country has
taken a downward spiral. President
Trump has to be given much of the
blame. One should respect their political
opponents and not make outrageous
Unfortunately, The Courier has sunk
to below the president’s level. This
is evident in its Aug. 8 editorial. The
Courier wrote in response to the El Paso
shooting “Republicans may try to wash
the president’s hands of responsibility
here, but the majority of us know better.
Sure, Trump didn’t pull the trigger but
his past words undoubtedly inspired
the gunman to do so. That Trump doesn’t
show an ounce of remorse is appalling.”
No matter what one thinks of the
president, to accuse him of complicity in
murder when it goes against the facts I
fi nd disgusting.
Lenny Rodin, Forest Hills
Editor’s note: Mr. Rodin included in his
letter a quote from the El Paso shooter’s
alleged manifesto which claims that the
motivation for his actions pre-dated
Trump’s presidency. We will not publish
this quote verbatim, nor will we name the
suspect; we will not use this space to give
this alleged hateful murderer a channel
to voice his hatred and inspire others to
Regardless of what the shooter said
and when he started believing it, the
larger point centers on this president’s
infl ammatory language, including the
same references to an “invasion” of
immigrants which the shooter used in
Mr. Rodin’s letter omitted two
paragraphs in our editorial last week
which preceded the one he quoted that
make clear our stance. We feel compelled
to repeat this now:
“One study aft er another has found
that the number of hate crimes in
America has soared since Trump took
offi ce. That’s because white nationalists
feel empowered by the president’s own
rhetoric; they feel it justifi es their own
hatred, and spurs them to lash out on
“Radicalized white nationalist
terrorists are getting their hands on
weapons of war, and turning them against
ordinary people just living their lives.
The president, of course, didn’t pause to
contemplate his contribution to this. He
blamed everything and everyone else
except himself, and guns.”
We stand by our editorial, though
readers have every right to disagree with
it if they so choose. — RP, Edit.
KEEP THE CO-OPS
Joseph N. Manago wrote this paper last
week asking for an end of cooperatives
and has written to Governor Andrew
Cuomo and the state Legislature (“Reader:
Get rid of the co-ops,” Aug. 8). He feels
co-ops depletes aff ordability of rental
inventory, and wants to legally abolish
housing cooperatives in the state of
My wife and I have a cooperative in
Glen Oaks Village. Years ago, we realized
that we could not aff ord a house and all
the maintenance costs involved. We saved
hard and long to aff ord our cooperative.
We also pay taxes, maintenance and pay a
mortgage and we are both senior citizens
and keep our apartment in good repair at
Under our co-op board president
and his management team, the quality
of life has aff ected for the better the
thousands that live here. They’ve shown
great concern for the shareholders.
And those who do the maintenance
here do an excellent job here and need
to be commended.
I feel Joseph N. Manago is off base
on this issue. Let me also point out that
an owner only, in part, takes pride in
that property, then that person is only
Frederick R. Bedell Jr.,
Glen Oaks Village
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Power (of food) to the people
BY COREY JOHNSON
As human beings, food is what we
need to survive and thrive. But
we all know that food is more
than just a necessity. It’s a connection
to our families, our culture and to
Unfortunately, in our city – one of the
richest in the world – many people don’t
have access to adequate, nutritious food.
More than 1 million New Yorkers are
food insecure, and there is inequitable
access to fresh and healthy food in
many neighborhoods throughout the
city, predominantly in low-income
communities and communities of color.
That’s why I recently released Growing
Food Equity in New York City, a detailed
report that outlines the City Council’s
agenda to tackle the challenges we face
in regard to food policy.
This report stems from our core belief
that access to adequate, nutritious food is
a human right.
That means that we have a moral
obligation to build a society where
everyone has the fundamental right to
be free from hunger and have access to
Food policy needs to be addressed
holistically if we’re going to achieve
that goal, which is why the Council will
introduce legislation to empower the
Mayor’s Offi ce of Food Policy. That offi ce
is currently too understaff ed and underresourced
to appropriately coordinate all
of this city’s vast food policy.
We also need to expand some of our
most successful food programs that
not only feed New Yorkers, but also
make sure the food they get is fresh and
One example is our Health Bucks
initiative, which provides coupons to
low-income New Yorkers to purchase
fruits and vegetables at farmers markets.
The program benefits more than
just its participants.
Health Bucks encourages participants
to shop at farmers markets, which are
an important part of our local food
Stimulating that economy — which
also includes Community Supported
Agriculture (CSA) programs and fresh
food boxes — is at the heart of what we
need to do to achieve our ambitious food
I’m also calling for the city to fund
a Community Food Hub Incubator to
develop and support even more local
food businesses and farm-to-city projects.
The Council will also consider legislation
to create an Offi ce of Urban Agriculture
that will help prioritize the ecological,
economic and health benefi ts of urban
agriculture in our city, including
community gardens and urban farms.
Things like local food businesses,
CSAs, farmers markets and community
gardens are integral to our diverse
communities, and as a city we must do
everything we can to help make them
This is smart food policy.
New Yorkers know best what kind of
food they need to sustain themselves and
their families physically, emotionally and
culturally. Our diversity is our strength,
and we don’t need a top-down approach
to food equity.
Rather, we want a system of food
governance that grows (pun intended)
from the communities themselves.
That’s at the heart of the City Council’s
food agenda — implementing food policies
that enrich our diverse communities.
Food is power. And we want that power
in the hands of the people.
Corey Johnson is the New York City
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City Council Speaker Corey Johnson