Brooklyn Lawmakers On The Move Jan. 12, 2018

News Site Brooklyn

Colton Applauds Columbus Circle Statue Decision

Assembly Member William Colton

Assembly Member Bill Colton (D-Bensonhurst, Bath Beach) yesterday applauded Mayor’ Bill de Blasio’s 18-member commission’s decision to keep the statue of Christopher Columbus in Manhattan’s Columbus Circle.

The Commission was impaneled to study various statues and plaques around the city that might be deemed for removal because they are not politically correct.

“I applaud the decision of the mayor’s commission to keep the Christopher Columbus monument at Columbus Circle where it is. As I explained in my testimony at the Brooklyn public hearing, this statue is culturally significant to the Italian American community as a symbol of hope and achieving the American dream,” said Colton.

“The commission listened to various testimonies, including my own and that of Nancy Tong, who was also in favor of preserving the statue, and ultimately decided that all immigrant communities have a right to their own customs and traditions. Celebrating diverse cultures builds strength within communities, and we will continue to celebrate Christopher Columbus and all the good he represents,” he added.

Mosley Rips Trump For Bigoted Comments

Assemblyman Walter Mosley

Assembly Member Walter T. Mosley (D-Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Prospect Heights, Crown Heights) yesterday ripped into President Donald Trump for reported derogatory remarks he made at a White House meeting in front of several lawmakers disparaging Haitians, and asking why he should accept immigrants from “shithole countries” rather than from places like Norway.

 “Unfortunately, it came as no surprise when President Trump made racist remarks about Haitians and other immigrants tonight. Many of us have known for some time that Donald Trump only wants to be the president for white America, and tonight’s comments proved that,” said Mosley.

“This man is dangerous for our nation and all the people, immigrants and native born, who live in it. For me, for families in my district, for our nation, this is a telling remark by a president who cares more about his own business interests than running our country or supporting the people who live here. I will continue to do all I can to stand up to his hateful regime and make New York a safe place for all,” Mosley added.

Cymbrowitz Blasts Paper for Blaming ‘the Jew’ For Lackluster Puerto Rican Recovery Efforts 

Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz

Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz (D-Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach) yesterday blasted Puerto Rico’s largest circulation newspaper for keeping on its website a column that blamed “the Jew” for the United States’ failure to deliver sufficient resources to aid in the recovery effort after Hurricane Maria.

El Nuevo Día columnist Wilda Rodríguez wrote a piece on Monday entitled “What Does ‘The Jew’ Want From The Colony?”

Cymbrowitz, who led a month-long local Puerto Rico relief drive in October with Rabbi Mendel Zarchi of Chabad of Puerto Rico, and traveled to the island to participate in the recovery effort, slammed the column as “blatant anti-Semitism and indicative of a mindset that conveniently evokes old, offensive stereotypes whenever an unexplained crisis occurs.”

While El Nuevo Día and the columnist have both issued apologies, Assemblyman Cymbrowitz said that more needs to be done. He believes the article should be removed from the paper’s website.

“It’s good that the newspaper as well as the author responded quickly to the backlash and that they understand the damage that words can do,” Cymbrowitz said. “But the reality is that no one remembers an apology. They remember the original article and the harmful stereotypes that have been perpetrated by a large news organization.”

“This article contributes nothing to the larger conversation and should be removed immediately,” he added.

Persaud Gives Flash Flood Warning

State Sen. Roxanne Persaud

State Sen. Roxanne Persaud (Canarsie, East New York, Brownsville, Mill Basin, Sheepshead Bay, Bergen Beach, Marine Park, Flatlands, Mill Island, Georgetown, Ocean Hill) warned residents in her district that the NYC Flash Flood Emergency Plan has been activated this morning in anticipation of heavy rain throughout the day.

A good portion of Persaud’s district is in a high flood zone, and parts of it was devastated with damage from Superstorm Sandy a few years ago.

“Residents and property owners are advised to clear any trash or debris on top of or adjacent to catch basins near their property, in order to allow the basin to collect storm water continuously,” said Persaud. “Again, please take the necessary precautions.”

Street flooding and blocked catch basins should be reported by calling 311, or by using the 311 website,

 Jeffries, Clarke Urge Altice & Starz Inc To Resolve Dispute

Congressman Hakeem Jeffries
Congresswoman Yvette Clarke

Congressmembers Hakeem Jeffries (D-Central Brooklyn, Coney Island) and Yvette Clarke (D-Crown Heights, Flatbush, Sheepshead Bay) wrote a letter to cable giants Altice USA and Starz Inc. urging the cable giants to resolve their dispute that has left millions of New York City residents without access to Power and other popular shows on the Starz network.

Diversity in the media is one of the top priorities of the Multicultural Media Caucus, of which Jeffries and Clarke are members. They hope that Altice and Starz can come to a mutually agreeable decision that restores access to Starz programming for subscribers in New York’s 8th and 9th Congressional Districts.

The letter states, in part: “This programming is of particular importance to the African-American community, and we are disappointed that such content is no longer available to Optimum subscribers. Given the importance of Altice and Starz, we urge both sides to engage in good faith negotiations and come to a mutually agreeable resolution that allows the people in our districts to experience the content they have paid to receive.”

Williams On Protest Arrest

City Councilmember Jumaane Williams

City Council Member Jumaane D. Williams (D-Flatbush, East Flatbush, MIdwood) yesterday released the following statement regarding his arrest while protesting the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention of Ravi Ragbir.

Ragbir, a Trinidadian immigrant, is executive director of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City. According to Daily News reports, he was granted permanent residency in 1994, but it was revoked after he was convicted of wire fraud in 2000. He served a 30-month prison term but later asked the court to revise the original judgment, citing faulty jury instructions and poor legal representation.

“Many people were taken away by law enforcement today. Protesters like myself were taken in an NYPD van. Ravi Ragbir was taken away in an ambulance, by ICE. The protesters taken in, myself among them, were eventually released. Ravi has not been. If ICE continues along its current track in this case, he will be deported. This is a tragic injustice for him, his family, and the community that he has served and led for over two decades in this country,” said Williams.

“Ravi is a dedicated community educator, spokesperson, and advocate for immigrants.  He has served on the Board of Directors and Steering Committees of both national and local non-profit organizations.  He has created community organizations, and educated other advocates, allies, community organizers, and elected officials on immigration issues as well as new policies and reform proposals from Congress. He is exactly the kind of person that we need here, working for the common good and for the cause of justice, for immigrants and for all. He needs our support, and I stand with Ravi.

“Immigration and Customs Enforcement, under a tyrannical Trump Administration, has abused its power to tear lives and families apart, their actions are inhumane and illogical. Trump has repeatedly said that he merely seeks to deport those who have committed crimes of extreme violence. That was, and continues to be, a lie. I will continue to work alongside dedicated activists, advocates, and elected officials to resist the destructive incompetence and malicious bigotry of the Trump administration. We must defend our fellow human beings from the Trump Administration’s attacks on our city, our state, our nation, and our people, and I vow to continue that fight with renewed vigor and steadfast resolve.”

Menchaca Inauguration Event

City Councilman Carlos Menchaca

City Council Member Carlos Menchaca (D-Sunset Park, Red Hook) invites the public to attend the District 38 City Council inauguration event on Sunday.

“Community leaders, district residents, young advocates, elected officials, and public service organizations will be highlighted as we celebrate District 38 achievements and opportunities for the next four years,” said Menchaca.

The event is slated for Sunday, Jan. 14 at Sunset Park High School, 153 35th Street in Sunset Park. Seating is limited, please RSVP to [email protected].