Pink Houses, Diane Gordon, Joel Klein, Mike Bloomberg
Yesterday I visited Pink Houses in Assembly District 40. There are some buildings in the Pink Houses where no human being should live. I could not use the elevators because they were full of newspapers soaked in stale urine and other substances. The odor that came out when the elevator doors opened was nauseating. There was vomit and feces in some of the stairwells. When I left the building I rushed home to change all my stinking clothing and take a hot soapy shower.
In the midst of the stench, large posters of Assemblywoman Diane Gordon were pasted up in the lobbies. Apparently, the Housing Projects are the Assemblywoman’s base.
I have no doubt that there are other Housing Projects which have similar conditions, but I doubt there could be any worse. I kept thinking that there were children trapped in conditions that the United Nations might consider a violation of Human Rights.
This is not intended to place blame for this disgraceful situation on Assemblywoman Gordon. The people who live in the Pink Houses must take primary responsibility for this disaster. But since this is the Assemblywoman’s political base she certainly should have paid more attention to the quality of life in these Housing Projects.
One of the people making the tour of Pink Houses with me felt that nobody could do anything about the Pink Houses. My answer is the same that I used to give to fellow-teachers who claimed that their students couldn’t learn. IF YOU CAN’T DO THE JOB, THEN GIVE IT UP. The living conditions of children in the Pink Houses should certainly be a primary concern of all elected officials representing this area.
Moreover, the Mayor and Schools Chancellor Joel Klein should consider it an emergency to pay a visit to the Pink Houses. What I saw yesterday may definitely be described as a Health Crisis. The Mayor and the Chancellor should do it on a week-end evening to get the best impact. Particularly Mr. Klein. The children of the Pink Houses need special attention from the Department of Education if they are to rise above that sour and sleazy environment. Programs need to be implemented to address the retarding effect of the Pink Houses.
Assemblywoman Diane Gordon will be spending much of the next year dealing with her trial for seeking and accepting a bribe. She will also need over $200,000 for her lawyer’s fees. She’s not likely to have the time to help the residents of the Pink Houses.