Letters to the editor

Koch and Moore

To The Editor:

Former Mayor Ed Koch’s characterization of “Fahrenheit 9/11” as cheapening the national debate and comparing it to a glory piece on Hitler is endemic of the propaganda campaign that the right-wing conservatives have launched in this country (Koch on Film, July 9 – 15). Michael Moore created an important film that exposes many of the serious problems with the Bush presidency. It is apparent that this material hits close to home as Republicans are frantically scrambling to discredit the film and Michael Moore.

As with most critics of “Fahrenheit 9/11”, instead of refuting the major accusations that Moore makes in “Fahrenheit 9/11”, Mr. Koch takes Moore to task over a minor detail. Just for the record, the six-month media consortium study did not decisively declare that Bush won the election. The study found that using any standard that tabulated all disputed votes statewide, Mr. Gore erased Mr. Bush’s advantage and emerged with a tiny lead that ranged from 42 to 171 votes. There are references and links to the original article and the report on Michael Moore’s Web site — www.michaelmoore.com.

Because there is an overwhelming amount of evidence presented in “Fahrenheit 9/11” that demonstrates how the president made critical missteps in the wake of the 9/11 attack, it is no wonder that Michael Moore is screaming mad. I am screaming mad as well, especially when I found out that Mr. Bush and staff put off meeting with the head counter-terrorism advisor for nine months and that Bush spent 42% of his first eight months in office on vacation, not to mention the dubious financial relationship with the Saudis.  I don’t hear any of the film’s critics disputing these facts.

I encourage those who have not yet seen “Fahrenheit 9/11” to go out and see the film. If you doubt any of the material that is presented, don’t rely on Ed Koch, the poster-boy for the Republican National Convention, to clarify them for you. Do your own research and come to your own conclusions about what is presented in the film. Even if you decide that half of it is true, that is still quite a bit to be screaming mad about.


Linda Giordano

Dudley owner says thanks

To The Editor:

I would like to thank you very much for the wonderful coverage you gave Dudley in the June 18th Downtown Express (news article, “A dog named Dudley dies and Tribeca mourns,” editorial, “So long, Dudley”).

The article that Deborah Lynn Blumberg wrote truly captured the essence of Dudley, the store and the community’s reaction to his death.

Please know that I was also quite moved by your editorial. I consider it a glowing tribute. Your heartfelt generosity is most appreciated.

Yvonne Fox

Rethink culture towers

To The Editor:

Recent events at the World Trade Center offer Gov. Pataki an opportunity to reverse his most obvious blunder since the start of the reconstruction effort. Pataki should take the steps necessary to include the World Cultural Center, designed by THINK and a finalist for the master plan at the trade center site, within the reconstruction plans. Given Larry Silverstein’s inability to recover adequate insurance proceeds to fund buildings other than the first office tower, additional options must be considered by the Port Authority and the Lower Manhattan Development Corp. No alternative brings the myriad benefits of THINK’s towers to the new World Trade Center.

THINK’s proposal — a variation on the original W.T.C. theme of Twin Towers — provides the best option for the return of that profound silhouette to the skies of Manhattan. Further, it creates an immediate restoration of presence at the W.T.C. without fear of the vagaries of the real estate market. It also creates a superior motivation for charitable donations. Conceivably, THINK’s W.C.C. could attract the $500 million necessary for its construction, and be seen soaring over New York City, long before the first W.T.C. office tower is completed.

At this time, the only tenants clamoring to return Downtown have been cultural entities. It is expected that commercial tenants will flock to the new W.T.C. But why wait and hope for that to occur when the W.C.C. towers could promptly induce the presence of tens of thousands of tourists and art-lovers who would serve as a catalyst for a more rapid commercial homecoming? The income stream and goodwill generated by the presence of the W.C.C. towers and their cultural extravaganza will fund and support construction and occupancy of additional commercial space at the W.T.C.

This inclusion of THINK’s cultural towers will diminish the threat of dreary architectural megalomania at the new W.T.C. In contrast, we are currently facing the proposed construction of Daniel Libeskind’s commemorative deconstruction. How regrettable it would be to sacrifice our potential rebirth and renewal for perpetual destruction and death.

David T. Donahue

Chinatown isn’t clean

To The Editor:

Just read the other day the Chinese newspaper Sing Tao Daily and learned of your readers writing about Chinatown not being clean enough for them (Letters, June 11 –17, “Chinatown Cleanliness,” June 18 – 24, “Fulton is next to Chinatown”). I also learned that some Chinese readers also wrote to Downtown Express, charging racial motives in your readers’ letters (Letters, July 2 – 8, “Race and Chinatown” and “Too little for Chinatown”).

I must first say I’m Chinese, and I want to criticize the filthy situation in Chinatown. So there cannot be racial motivation here.

The situation at Division and Bowery is but one eyesore. But at least that’s drier filth. Who’s to blame for allowing these vendors to operate there anyway?

Chinatown’s cleanliness is even worse than that in some other parts, say Mott St. between Grand and Hester Sts., or East Broadway between Catherine and Allen. Look just at the fish stores. I’ve seen store people pouring dirty water straight onto the street at curbside. Vegetable stores would discard some ice packs mixed with vegetable leftovers onto the street. That’s ignorance of laws and regulations.

Dept. of Health, Dept. of Sanitation, should come down hard on such merchants and anyone responsible for dirtying up our streets. Sure they give citations, but it’s like once in a blue moon. And, they mostly aren’t around when the violations occur anyway. If and when they do, the inspectors should issue summonses to the violators, on escalating scales also, double the second time, quadruple the third time. But then again the Sanitation Dept. also doesn’t collect the garbage and clean the streets fast enough.

Why are the streets so damned clean in Hong Kong and Singapore, for example, but not here in the wealthiest country in the world? The government should bear much of the blame.

The unions, the education system, the families, and the government. They all are to blame. We have yet to see a New York school system teaching kids the right manners (didn’t they use to have civic lessons?).

We can go on, and on, and on. But, don’t blame anyone for being racially motivated.

The fact that the Lower Manhattan Development Corp., or the government, doesn’t give enough aid to the Chinatown community has nothing to do with cleanliness in Chinatown. So what if businesses are under-assisted? The business owners are not crying behind doors. What do some of these business owners know, or care about their civic duties?

Sam Mark