Friday, March 16, 2007

Flushing Meadows Park

From the Queens Chronicle:

Dear Editor:

This year, I have taken on an important issue involving abuse of power, arrogance, poor administrative skills, disdain toward the taxpayers and Flushing Meadows Park. Mayor Michael Bloomberg has shown a lack of oversight and/or care for Flushing Meadows Park. He knows he has big problems with Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe, who is supposed to oversee Flushing Meadows and instead allows the destruction of that park to continue.

The crimes within the park were brought to my attention in 1999. At that time, park activist Paul Priore handed me videos showing shoddy conditions and crimes taking place openly in that park, day and night. He went to all of Mayor Rudy Guiliani’s town hall meetings, the park’s inspector general, the media, police precincts, the former Commissioner Henry Stern, Benepe and Flushing Meadows’ administrator, Estelle Cooper. He begged them to look into the crimes with the day vendors and night muggings. Instead of listening to him, they stooped to slandering him.

Today, others have taken on the plight of the park’s fiasco. They are now the target of the evil Parks Department spin. Bottom line, Flushing Meadows is used as a parking lot during tennis and ballpark events. The cost varies between the five lots from $18 to $25 per car in order to place the cars on acres of grassland. The mantra I hear from those I have contacted is, “It’s only since they are building the new Shea Stadium.” Balderdash. It has been a practice for years. Which community board gave them the heads up to do this? What politician has protested against this? Or, are they being politically quiet and going along with the flow? I think so. Try parking one car on Central Park’s lawn.

The fish smells from the head down and there is something fishy about Benepe. He knows what’s going on and appears to condone it. Ignoring the taxpayer’s cry for help just as Guiliani ignored Priore’s cries of rampant crime in the park. They only did something when the rapes, murders and beatings were made public.

Joyce Shepard
Citizen’s Action Committee for Change


Anonymous said...

She's BAAAAAaaaaack!

maxwell said...

hey, i also write (although definitely not exclusively) in favor of contextual development in neighborhoods. just thought i'd comment and let you know that i really enjoy your blog.

Anonymous said...

Go get 'em Joyce!

Anonymous said...

"The fish smells from the head down." Blame Benepe, but remember, he does nothing unless he given direction by Bloomberg.

They are both complicit. Bloomberg is the one who was elected to manage people like Benepe. Benepe is getting something out of this neglect, but, so is Bloomberg.

Let Bloomberg know what you think. Write, email or phone him (via 311). You're his boss. Make him clearly understand that.

Anonymous said...

Unlike Eastern Parkway and Park Ave, Queens Blvd is a joke. Unlike Prospect Park or Central Park, Flushing Meadows is a joke.

The point is that hundreds of thousands of people use this park every month.

Almost none complain, nor will they ever.

The vast majority are immigrants. They satisfy the needs of the machine and over time, when they get the chance to vote, will support the machine.

What is a little peeling paint and a dead cat floating in the water?

If you don't like it, you can move. There will be a half dozen (or more) desperate people ready to take your place.

Anonymous said...

"If you don't like it, you can move. There will be a half dozen (or more) desperate people ready to take your place."

What a sickening display of depression and surrender.

Joyce. It's all uphill, but, real people are with you. Congratulations on your persistence.

Anonymous said...

"If you don't like it, you can move. There will be a half dozen (or more) desperate people ready to take your place."

"What a sickening display of depression and surrender."

This is the reality of the way Queens is ruled. Sorry if its not pretty.

Paul Priore said...

Re: Donald Trump -- Our US President-elect:
Despite the fact that I've been a lifelong Democrat, I proudly voted for the Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump.
Originally, I wanted Hillary Clinton to win and be the first female President. However, I changed my mind due to all the scandals and corruption surrounding her which totally turned me off.
I feel Donald Trump will go down in history as one of the greatest Presidents of all time. He will surely get things done for the good of the entire country.
Let me be the first to say that Donald Trump will not be a one-term President. He will run in 2020 and win reelection.
I had the pleasure of meeting both Mr. Trump and Ms. Clinton on several occasions in the 1990s.
I also know that Mr. Trump doesn't like to lose, or be told that he can't do something. It makes him more determined to prove his critics wrong.
I feel compelled to comment that I'm quite disgusted and disappointed at the way some of the American people are acting. For example, they are destroying people’s property and are assaulting innocent people who hold different political views. These are the same "animals" who incite violence and racism.
President Elect Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama should hold a press conference and demand that these protesters stop this nonsense and united behind President Elect Donald Trump for the sake of the country.
Mr. Trump won the election fair and square and is our President-elect. He deserves our respect and we, as a nation, need to stand by him and support him.
Many people are prematurely judging him despite the fact that he hasn't officially been sworn in. In my view, give the man a chance to prove himself rather than deciding to protest based on preconceived notions. He is going to surprise everyone by getting things done to help the American people and others around the world. No one person can do everything without getting some form of help. No one goes into the US Presidency changing everything on the first day. Systemic change takes time, but at least Donald Trump is willing to try.
The US political scene has generally been corrupt for such a long time that President-elect Trump is going to have to mend fences from both sides of the dividing line.
In my opinion, if anyone believes that it’s so easy to get things done, then I suggest you make a run for the US Presidency next time around.
So, stop all the violence and destructive behavior and learn to get along with one another and embrace our new President.
End all the divisiveness and give peace a try. None of those rioting protesters are going to change the outcome of the upcoming electoral college vote which will actually make Donald Trump's win "official." The protesters are all wasting their time and energy and causing trouble whereas they should be utilizing their voices and grassroots efforts to help make things better in their communities and bring their main concerns to the attention of President-elect Trump.
Let’s make an example by uniting the country and showing the world we are indeed civilized and not savages.
The foregoing expresses my own personal opinions and beliefs.

Paul Priore