Saturday, July 19, 2008

Letter to Editor-Observer

In response to the article:

A Bowery Veteran Hangs On
Is longtime resident Roberta Degnore crusading—or cashing in?

This article was published in the July 21, 2008, edition of The New York Observer.

Whether you are sympathetic or not to this individuals situation is not the point. Whether you are transient here or a long term resident you count on someone, if not yourself, to make this home. Length of stay isn’t necessarily the determining factor. Treating this as a neighborhood you are a part of is.
People have a right to home and a responsibility to community. A society relies on it. You rely on it. Owning or renting isn’t the criteria either. All parties entered into rent-stabilized agreements understanding what they meant. When no one else would rent landlords were thrilled to have any tenant at any rent rate. They gained. Now that those spaces are more valuable, landlords aren’t “entitled” to bigger profits. They made the deal they made or bought places that were already contracted for the rent they generated.
Some of us want to stand with neighbors like Roberta, but is in everyone’s best interest to build and sustain a neighborhood that cares for its people, that cares for you.
JULY 19, 2008
K Webster