FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM APRIL 26, 2018 • THE QUEENS COURIER 37
This undated, early 20th-century
photo shows the Covert
family farm house that
once stood at the corner of
Halle Avenue (55th Drive) at
Betts Avenue (57th Place)
in Maspeth. The home was
demolished long ago to make
way for industrial development.
The site is currently
used for such purposes to this
day. Send us your historic
photos of Queens by email to
A Look Back) or mail printed
pictures to A Look Back,
38-15 Bell Blvd., Bayside, NY
11361. All mailed pictures
will be carefully returned to
you. Photo via Ridgewood
of the Greater Ridgewood
letters & comments
FIGHTING THE RISE OF
HATE IN AMERICA
As we approached the 75th anniversary
of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising,
we noted with alarm the rising tide of
racism, anti-immigrant rhetoric and
actions, and anti-Semitism worldwide.
Th is terrible growth of exclusionary
and bigoted policies, actions and
attitudes is contextualized by Donald
Trump and his like-minded leaders
in Russia, Poland and Hungary. It
is further fueled by movements and
leaders from the National Front in
France, similar movements throughout
Europe, the so-called alt-right in
the U.S., and lower-level anti-Semitic
leaders such as Louis Farrakhan.
Th is growth of hate can and must
be defeated. Th e starting point is the
understanding that racism, anti-immigrant
prejudices and anti-Semitism
are all fruits of the same poisonous
tree. Across-the-board unity of opposition
to all is the only path to defeating
each. Within the Jewish community,
this means that any capitulation
to or support of overt rhetoric,
dog whistling or policies that promote
hate, either by Trump or any
other leader or organization propagating
bigotry, discrimination or
related forms of fascism, regardless of
the issue and rationale, is a contribution
to the growth of anti-Semitism.
In the progressive movement, this
means that anti-Semitism needs to
be opposed and denounced just as
strongly as racism and anti-immigrant
acts. We are dismayed and disappointed
that some of our allies are
not suffi ciently forthright in denouncing
anti-Semitism. Such hesitancy
will only serve to weaken the overall
movement. Unity against all hateful
acts and statements is the only
path to progress. Th is is the path that
Th e Workmen’s Circle will continue
Within the Jewish community,
in order to successfully defeat this
growth of anti-Semitism, our responsibility
is to both denounce all forms
of hate recognizing the inseparable
links that unite all hate speech and
purveyors of hate; and not to accommodate
in any way those that directly
promote or give comfort to those
who promote hate, regardless of what
other issues they might be considered
like-minded in regards.
For our friends and allies in the
broad progressive movement there
needs to be a vigilant commitment
to denounce and fi ght anti-Semitism
and to see that opposition to
anti-Semitism as a vital and necessary
part of the overall fi ght for justice
Peter Pepper, President, and
Ann Toback, Executive Director,
Th e Workmen’s Circle
Former fi rst lady Barbara Bush has
just passed away at age 92 and leaves
many of us quite saddened. She was
the wife of President George H.W.
Bush and mother of President George
W. Bush. But she was more than that
in her lifetime, for she cared about the
many in need of compassion.
Barbara Bush tried to get others
to volunteer at homeless shelters
and head start projects and promoted
AIDS awareness. As fi rst
lady, she promoted reading by starting
the Barbara Bush Foundation for
Literacy. And fi nally she was an advocate
for the American family as well as
many more accomplishments, for that
she will be dearly missed.
America mourns a truly great lady
whom we will never forget.
Frederick R. Bedell Jr.,
Glen Oaks Village
WHEN IT SUITS THEM
Here are some facts Republicans
can’t ignore, but they’ll try.
Republicans have always pushed for
more tax cuts when they’re in power
because they know that Democrats
will be blamed when they’re in charge.
Republicans don’t care because, once
enacted, they will bind the hands of
Democrats for years to come. Trump’s
corporate tax cuts will generate enormous
defi cits, setting up the GOP to
claim (as Paul Ryan stated) that the time
has come to cut Social Security, Medicare
and welfare to reduce the expected $1
trillion defi cit they just created by enacting
those very tax cuts! It’s insanity!
Defi cits only matter to Republicans
when Democrats are in power. Th e
Republican tax cuts leave Washington
with less money and raise the specter
of defi cits damaging the economy
as a rationale to take away the benefi ts
that millions of Americans depend on.
Th en, Democrats are forced to raise
taxes to restore the benefi ts millions
of poor and middle-class Americans
need to do something Republicans fi nd
But I guess Republicans will claim
it’s all Obama’s fault. Or perhaps
Hillary’s emails are to blame. Or
Monica Lewinsky. Or the late Ted
Kennedy and Chappaquiddick.
Robert LaRosa, Whitestone
Email your letters to editorial@qns.
com (Subject: Letter to the Editor) or
leave a comment to any of our stories
at QNS.com. You can also send a letter
by regular mail to Letters to the Editor,
38-15 Bell Blvd., Bayside, NY 11361. All
letters are subject to editing. Names will
be withheld upon request, but anonymous
letters will not be considered for
publication. Th e views expressed in all
letters and comments are not necessarily
those of this publication or its staff .
The future of Queens
BY LARRY PENNER
When it comes to public transportation, there
are numerous transportation projects and proposals
that could benefi t Queens residents.
Th ey all are competing against each other for
city, state and federal funding. Each may be
supported by diff erent advocates including the
Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Port
Authority of New York and New Jersey, New
York State Department of Transportation, New
York City Department of Transportation, New
York City Economic Development Corporation,
various city, state and federal Queens elected
offi cials, constituents and transit advocates.
Th ere is no consensus among this divergent
group on any order of priority for funding.
State lawmakers recently announced the inclusion
of $50 million within the new $168 billion
state budget for outer-borough transportation —
but that is a drop in the bucket to what is really
needed. Divide $50 million between four outer
boroughs, and Queens ends up with $12 million.
Th at is enough money to purchase six new subway
cars or 12 buses.
When it comes to all the other 99 percent of
public transportation needs, Queens commuters
were left empty-handed with no real fi rm fi nancial
commitments. Elected offi cials continue to
fail in providing any specifi c information on how
they will come up with funding to implement
any of the following transportation projects supported
by riders and transit advocacy groups.
Th e LaGuardia Airport Train to the Plane has
only $70 million toward the overall project cost
of $1 billion, leaving a $930 million shortfall.
Next, there is a one-seat ride from Manhattan to
John F. Kennedy Airport which could cost several
Some Queens residents will be looking for
$97 million toward the $231 million Phase
2 Woodhaven Boulevard Select Bus Service.
Th ese dollars may be necessary if NYC DOT is
unable to secure $97 million in Federal Transit
Administration New Starts funding.
Many neighborhoods are looking for introduction
of either Select Bus Service; Bus Rapid
Transit; Limited Stop Bus to Subway or Express
Bus Service to Manhattan. Th ere is still the need
to bring many of the 78 Queens subway and
21 LIRR stations back to a state of good repair.
Don’t forget the need for additional subway and
LIRR stations to become fully compliant with
the Americans for Disability Act (ADA) by construction
Where do Queens state Senators and
Assembly members think Albany will fi nd the
cash for all these projects? Th e Federal Transit
Administration and City Hall may be possible
funding sources for some of these projects.
Clearly New York state and the MTA will have
to contribute some signifi cant funding.
Let us see how many members of the Queens
Congressional, Albany and NYC Council delegations
will be successful in authorizing and
appropriating additional funding which could be
added by amendment to the existing MTA $32
billion 2015 - 2019 Five Year Capital Plan.
Talk is cheap, but actions speak volumes.
Larry Penner is a transportation historian and
advocate who previously worked 31 years for
the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal
Transit Administration Region 2 NY Offi ce.
A LOOK BACK