Letters to the editor July 21, 2011 edition

You won’t see this eye­sore at the CEO’s home

I have tried to rem­edy the eye­sore in the ac­com­pa­ny­ing photo without any suc­cess. Whenev­er I have vis­it­ors or fam­ily mem­bers over, as soon as they go in­to my back yard they say, “What the hell is that!”

I re­mem­ber when these com­pan­ies went to City Coun­cil beg­ging for em­in­ent do­main rights to tres­pass on homeown­ers’ prop­erty. They were scream­ing, “There would be simple in­stall­a­tions with all re­spect for any­one’s prop­erty.”

This is an ex­ample of costly ser­vices with no re­spect for the con­sumer or their prop­erty. Just rig it! What about city blight?

Why should any­one have to put up with this? I’ll bet the com­pany CEOs would not have this on their prop­erty.

Please help!

Robert Oakley


Call­ing on the kids to help

I’m writ­ing this let­ter to ap­peal to the kids of May­fair who do care about their neigh­bor­hood — the good kids who come from good homes.

I’m ask­ing them to step up and stop the kids who are caus­ing dam­age to the com­plex at Ab­ra­ham Lin­coln High School. If you can’t stop them your­self, use your cell phone to call 911 and re­port the prob­lem to the po­lice.

In re­cent months since the foot­ball sta­di­um has been com­pleted, kids from the neigh­bor­hood have des­troyed a new soc­cer goal, set fire to the new field turf (twice), and put graf­fiti on the stands, walls and now even the new turf. One knuckle­head even let their dog de­fec­ate on the new turf.

Some mor­ons let their kids ride four-wheel­ers around the com­plex, which re­cently was seeded. Go to an­oth­er county, buy a home there and have your kid ride in the sub­urbs.

In this part of May­fair, our hands are full dur­ing the day with the pro­gram that brought in 300 of the worst stu­dents to Lin­coln. We don’t need neigh­bor­hood kids ru­in­ing a beau­ti­ful com­plex at night.

I ask the par­ents to keep an eye on your kids, and I’m ask­ing the kids to take pride in your neigh­bor­hood.

Tim Burke


Coun­cil­man O’Neill’s 30 years mean a lot

The oth­er week I wrote a let­ter be­cause I felt City Coun­cil can­did­ate Bill Ru­bin was us­ing the opin­ion pages in both the North­east Times and the Daily News (where he wasn’t iden­ti­fied as Bri­an O’Neill’s op­pon­ent) for cam­paign pur­poses.

The Sat­urday after my let­ter was prin­ted, Bill Ru­bin called me to dis­cuss our opin­ions. As I found out from Bill Ru­bin, he is good friends with my son and a neph­ew of a friend and co-work­er. He is very pleas­ant and a nice guy.

However, it is my opin­ion that when com­pared to a law­yer from a prom­in­ent city law firm who has been a coun­cil­man (a le­gis­lat­ive po­s­i­tion that re­quires the writ­ing of laws) for three dec­ades and knows the job, Bill Ru­bin just isn’t as qual­i­fied.

To change for the sake of change is not a good enough reas­on in my book. Can we really wait for Bill Ru­bin to learn the job and get up to speed, if he can?

If the voters of the 10th Coun­cil­man­ic Dis­trict look back on Bri­an’s ca­reer, you will find that the Demo­crat­ic City Coun­cil mem­bers (Bill Ru­bin’s party) gave Bri­an a very dis­tin­guished, power­ful po­s­i­tion in City Coun­cil.

May­er Krain

Mod­ena Park

O’Neill chal­lenger is a Tartagli­one lackey

After read­ing sev­er­al art­icles and let­ters in this pa­per re­fer­ring to City Coun­cil can­did­ate Bill Ru­bin, in­clud­ing his own self-serving let­ter, I de­cided to see what he had to of­fer.

After do­ing some re­search I real­ized this man has been a lifelong polit­ic­al pat­ron­age em­ploy­ee. He worked in ar­gu­ably one of the most in­com­pet­ent and cor­rupt of­fices in City Hall un­der DROP Queen Marge Tartagli­one for over two dec­ades.

Don’t get me wrong — I fre­quently dis­agree with what City Coun­cil does, but I know one thing: After the voters ous­ted Marge from City Hall in the primary elec­tion, the last thing the North­east needs is a Tartagli­one lackey named Bill Ru­bin.

Joe Gaynor

Fox Chase

DROP should be off-lim­its to part-timers

Luck­ily, people write to the North­east Times about things that up­set me, so I usu­ally don’t have to write, but I had to ad­dress James Moore’s fa­vor­able let­ter about the DROP pro­gram (Don’t drop DROP for our her­oes on the street, June 23 edi­tion).

All due re­spect to Mrs. Moore and all the oth­er cross­ing guards, but — WHAT? Yes, you do a very hon­or­able and ne­ces­sary job, but in times where the ma­jor­ity of people have no pen­sion (or lost it), I find it hard to be­lieve work­ing three hours a day, hav­ing hol­i­days off and all sum­mer off en­titles you to be in the DROP pro­gram.

I don’t blame you for de­fend­ing the DROP pro­gram, but I don’t feel that it should ever be handed out to part-time em­ploy­ees. All your let­ter did was make me want the DROP pro­gram gone even faster.

John G. Snyder Sr.


What about a drought re­bate?

Our bill from the Phil­adelphia Wa­ter De­part­ment now in­cludes a “storm­wa­ter charge” ap­prox­im­ately $13.38 per billing cycle. I’m sure it var­ies from par­cel to par­cel. The Wa­ter De­part­ment charges us for “storm­wa­ter run­off that is put in­to the city’s sew­er sys­tem.”

What hap­pens when we are in drought con­di­tions or do not have rain for a long peri­od of time? Should we still be charged as much or even at all? What’s up with that?

Mark Puck­er


Par­ents, not schools, should feed the chil­dren

Since when was it de­cided that the schools should be­come par­ents? Not only are tax­pay­ers fund­ing school break­fast and din­ner pro­grams dur­ing the school week, but there are week­end meal pro­grams also.

I’d love to know what ex­cuses the par­ents use now who say they have to go in­to work early and can’t give their kids break­fast dur­ing the week. Even worse yet, now there are sum­mer meal pro­grams. And all this is be­ing fun­ded off the backs of prop­erty own­ers who dared to be hard-work­ing and re­spons­ible.

It is the par­ents’ job to feed their kids, not the tax­pay­ers’ job. How will there ever be any in­cent­ive for par­ents to learn to be re­spons­ible if someone else is al­ways go­ing to take care of their kids?

A Phil­adelphia School Dis­trict teach­er re­cently told me that the fath­er of one of her stu­dents came to school one morn­ing and yelled at her be­cause she didn’t have the right brand of cer­eal for his daugh­ter. I’ll bet this man had a smart-phone, HD cable TV and a car nicer than mine.

The schools should be in­sti­tu­tions of learn­ing only. They have a hard-enough job try­ing to teach kids what they need to know to sur­vive in the world. They were not de­signed to be the care­takers of the chil­dren of lazy, ir­re­spons­ible par­ents.

I don’t want to see any child go hungry, but if par­ents can’t pour their kids a bowl of corn flakes for break­fast or boil a box of spa­ghetti for din­ner, they should have thought about that be­fore they hopped in the sack.  

Peter Di­Gi­useppe


It’s time for Ack­er­man the In­ept to leave 

Phil­adelphia has seen its schools gov­erned by a host of su­per­in­tend­ents who have failed the city for one reas­on or an­oth­er.

Dr. Horn­beck was ex­traordin­ar­ily con­ten­tious, lock­ing horns with every­one and every en­tity in sight.

Dr. Val­las failed to se­cure the back­ing of the School Re­form Com­mis­sion and was ushered out of the city over a de­fi­cit that rep­res­en­ted less than $100 mil­lion.

Dr. Clayton was a sta­bil­iz­ing force, but she was also a top-down man­ager ori­ented to­ward primary edu­ca­tion.

Mr. Mi­chael Marchese had an in­clin­a­tion to in­vite school con­tract­ors to work­ing va­ca­tions on his prop­erty at the shore. He did, however, en­joy a close re­la­tion­ship with the loc­al politicos and, hence, sur­vived pub­lic cri­ti­cism. 

Dr. Mat­thew Cost­anza, an hon­est and cap­able man, did not en­joy a warm re­la­tion­ship with City Hall and did not sur­vive as su­per­in­tend­ent for long.

Dr. Ar­lene Ack­er­man, however, has plunged the school dis­trict in­to a $600 mil­lion de­fi­cit, al­lowed school vi­ol­ence to dom­in­ate our head­lines, and faced off against May­or Nut­ter and most of City Coun­cil.

She has en­joyed com­pens­a­tion that pro­jects to over $400,000 a year, en­cour­aged “test­ing to” stand­ard­ized test­ing (to raise scores), and broken con­tract­ing pro­to­cols at will.

A host of city schools have been turned over to private, for-profit en­tit­ies with little in­put from par­ents, staffs and stu­dents. Wit­ness the free-for-all over the ap­point­ment of an out­side agency for King High School.

Real es­tate taxes have been raised again to tide the dis­trict over.

So why is Ack­er­man still hold­ing forth from North Broad Street? An­swer: She has the sup­port of SRC chair­man Robert Arch­ie and oth­er mem­bers of the SRC, which doesn’t an­swer to the city of Phil­adelphia, but rather Har­ris­burg. The Phil­adelphia In­quirer, by the way, has called for Arch­ie’s resig­na­tion.

Who else sup­ports this in­ept, du­pli­cit­ous su­per­in­tend­ent? Do I see any raised hands?

We agree: Ack­er­man has to go.

George Swales


A ques­tion for the may­or

May­or Nut­ter, are you ready to ef­fect­ively ad­dress the youth and teen vi­ol­ence in our city or will you con­tin­ue to sit idle while they con­tin­ue to as­sault and murder in­no­cent vic­tims and each oth­er?

An­thony P. John­son

Ju­ni­ata Park

Fool me once, shame on me —   but nev­er again

Two sum­mers ago a young, red-haired man came to my door and offered to clip my hedges for $20. Stu­pidly, I took him up on it. Ten minutes later, he was at the door again, ask­ing for change for a $50 dol­lar bill he claimed an­oth­er neigh­bor had paid him with. I told him I didn’t have change, but paid him his $20 any­way. Prac­tic­ally as soon as I shut the door, he was gone and hadn’t even touched my hedges. Maybe I should have had a clue when it didn’t look like he was car­ry­ing any equip­ment.

He did this scam all over the North­east, and was back on my porch at 8:30 this morn­ing, with the same of­fer to do my hedges. When I told him I knew his game, he swore up and down that he’d nev­er done my hedges. At least that was the truth.

Folks, if this guy comes to your door, let him know in no un­cer­tain terms you’re on to him and he’ll have to make his (drug) money else­where.

Bar­rie Creedon-Wen­nberg


She’s not guilty, so what’s with the ob­scene car­toon?

Re­gard­ing the polit­ic­al car­toon in last week’s North­east Times: Let me see if I have this right. When the young daugh­ter of Ca­sey An­thony was found dead on the side of a road, Ms. An­thony was prop­erly ar­res­ted and ques­tioned about the death of her child. Right? She was not beaten or forced to con­fess that she had killed the child. Right? She was kept safely in pris­on un­til her tri­al began. Right?

She had a com­pet­ent at­tor­ney who most people now agree provided her with an ad­equate de­fense. Right? She was al­lowed to re­main si­lent dur­ing the tri­al and on the ad­vice of her at­tor­ney, did not take the stand. Right? The ex­cel­lent judge presided over the tri­al fairly, and did not show bi­as to­ward the de­fense or the pro­sec­u­tion, and in fact con­trolled the ex­cesses of both. Right?

The jury ap­peared to be in­tel­li­gent Amer­ic­an cit­izens who de­lib­er­ated in an even-handed, fair man­ner without pre­ju­dice. Right? They found her guilty of telling lies to the ar­rest­ing au­thor­it­ies, a crime for which she was fairly sen­tenced. Right?

The jury voted un­an­im­ously to find her not guilty of mur­der­ing her child since, they said, there was no evid­ence and no wit­nesses to con­vict her of this crime. Right?

Then will someone tell me the mean­ing of that ob­scene car­toon of Lady Justice with a bloody sword pier­cing her body and the scales of justice on the ground broken. Any­body? 

Ed­ward Huber


Equal op­por­tun­ity has blas­ted in­to his­tory

Amer­ica cel­eb­rated the Fourth of Ju­ly with hot dogs, soda and fire­works. Look­ing back, our fore­fath­ers had hoped Amer­ica would be the land of op­por­tun­ity for all gen­er­a­tions to come. Op­por­tun­it­ies made us what we are as a na­tion.

Sadly, op­por­tun­it­ies of the past no longer ex­ist. Un­em­ploy­ment is high, and there are those who gave up look­ing for work. Even re­cent col­lege grads find it dif­fi­cult to get em­ploy­ment. The ma­jor­ity of the products Amer­ic­ans buy are made in coun­tries all over the world. Ob­vi­ously, this has driv­en the middle class and poor deep­er in­to poverty.

Equal op­por­tun­ity that was fore­seen by our fore­fath­ers has be­come like the fire­works — ex­plod­ing in front of our eyes.

Mar­ie Pat­ton

Fox Chase

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