Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Unanswered Questions About Kruger's Protest

The main story to come out of last night's canceled meeting is State Sen. Carl Kruger - the new de facto opposition leader against Bloomberg's plan- arriving with bus loads of yellow hatted supporters. The Brooklyn Paper captured the tone of Kruger's speech:

"Score one for the good guys," state Sen. Carl Kruger (D–Bensonhurst) shouted to his supporters after the Coney Island Development Corporation hastily canceled the meeting. "We won the ground war. You made a point tonight, and that is that Bloomberg isn't going to push his Manhattan plans on Brooklyn without hearing from Brighton Beach, Coney Island and Sheepshead Bay."

It is not clear if the meeting's cancellation was Kruger's intended goal, or an unexpected result of his stunt. He denies that it was his intention, but at the same time, he is claiming a victory.

Another unclear issue is who exactly the members of Kruger's 500 strong group were. The New York Post describes them vaguely as people who were "concerned about Mayor Bloomberg's grand plan to rezone Coney Island's beachfront" and 'outraged' by the city's violation of open public-meeting laws last night. The Brooklyn Eagle, on the other hand, quoted a boardwalk business owner who, "said the yellow-hatted crew seemed confused, resigned to being shuffled around by a woman carry a clipboard. 'It seemed like they were paid to be there.' "

The debate raged on the Coney Island USA Message board as well, mainly centering around the issues of Kruger's intentions and funding. User 'Capt_Nemo' started a thread entitled, 'Kruger, who paid for the buses?,' which he began with the question, "The citizens of Coney Island want to know, who is helping you scuttle Mayor Bloomberg's plans for Coney Island?" 'Tricia' gave her own answer to this question in another thread, making an apparent allusion to Thor Equities: "Now [Kruger's] in our faces because he's running for Borough President next year. I guess a lot of $$$$$$$ from big developers like you-know-who and all his minions will come in very handy."

One thing which is all too clear is that last night the many people who came to the meeting of their own accord to engage in a public discourse were left literally out in the cold, with no way to voice their opinions.

- post by Ben Nadler


Anonymous said...

Brooklyn Eagle - "Kruger said he paid for the hats and buses out of his own funds."

Omar - I have followed Kruger for years. You internet guys who think this is only about amusements are in for the fight of your lives. He is the single wildest politician I have ever seen. Nobody is even close. Last year we had the US Coast guard patrolling the party boats with heavy artillary here in the Bay after one Kruger protests about illegal activity on the boats. He has his own TV show- Brooklyn Beat. He even sued Bloomberg a couple of years back.

Like I have been telling you before Omar - #1 priority - Coney Jobs, economy and the Community.

Kruger is absolutely ubelievable at what he does.

Omar Robau said...

I'm starting to think Kruger and Recchia have been bought. In fact you can find somewhere on the boards where they have expected contributions from interested parties. Correct me here if I'm wrong.

Now, I'm not against the landowners in the area but I'm also not against the public that will benefit from having a thriving amusement district in one of the biggest cities of the world.

I've gathered you are for the big developer. Remember that the people unemployed in the 'neighborhood' of Coney Island which lives beside the 'amusement world' of Coney Island. (Remember this was a place of amusements before it ever became an urban neighborhood), will not be the majority of those who will be employed after the place has been built.

Also, if it becomes moslty residential then there will be far less employment opportunities than if the place were mostly amusements. And even then those unemployed will not be the majority of those employed here. Because those people are not, for the most part, specialized in the specific fields that would be required to fill.

Anonymous said...

Omar - I have family living in the neighborhood all their lives. #1 priority - year round economy, jobs, community. My wife grew up there. This will be about the people now. Kruger and Recchia will make sure of that. No doubt about it. Amusements are secondary. The people are first. You cannot have a community with an obscene unemployment rate and have a 3 month a year economy. Thats what Coney outdoor amusements have provided all our lives. 3 month economy. That has to change to year round. Its an impoverished community. The residents are the TRUE CHARACTER of Coney Island. So much more important than what you guys are fighting for. I felt like crying for my dead mother-in-law when the people showed up at CI hospital this week. She would have loved to be there. All she ever wanted for Marcie was to grow in in a safe growing thriving neighborhood. She never lived to see that. I hope my father-in-law lives to see it.

Omar Robau said...

I'm sorry Muscle but I STONGLY disagree with you. Coney will be getting a huge residential complex by Taconic and others. This will not help the unemployment rate except for the retail hires. The amusments in Coney will not make way for residents of the community. Are you suggesting that the amusements could be sacraficed for a mall where they could employ them? If so, look elsewhere! The amusement district in Coney will be preserved for that. That will bring lots of employment but it will not employ the whole neighborhood. The companies will also look elsewhere for specialized fields.

Neighborhoods are everywhere else USA. Coney Island the world of amusements and entertainment the way Coney should be...IS NOT!

This is what we fight for and we will win!

Anything that will protect and preserve the area as an entertainment and amusement district is what I will stand by 100% !!!!!

Anonymous said...

Omar - You believe this is condos versus amusements. Its not. The amusement entusiasts such as yourself would like to make it out to be that way. Year round means hotels, indoor amusements, restaurants, movie theaters, music venues etc

I have walked the boardwalk during the winter at night with Marcie since I started dating her 22 years ago. Its dangerous, deserted and the only activity during the winter evenings in front of the closed amusements is a couple of drunk and drug addicts. Coney as a neighborhood does not stand a chance without a year round zone. The potential there is enormous and the reality there is totally disgusting since the day Marcie was born.

You continue with your fight Omar. I hope you feel you win too if it means CONEY ISLAND RESIDENTS WIN. Thats what really matters. Not if you or I win.