Previously uninvolved in politics, a group of over 50 young Lubavitchers gathered in Basil for a meet and greet evening in support of mayoral candidate Bill Thompson. This was the first ever event of this kind and the organizers were impressed with its success.
The friendly and warm atmosphere allowed attendants to meet the seasoned politician and see him in a different context and raise issues in a comfortable and conversational manner.
This event marked the first time that young residents of Crown Heights have gotten involved in any form of city politics without any personal vested interests, aside from the good and betterment of our community.
Speaking to the crowd Mr. Thompson shared some of his special connection to Crown Heights. He shared memories of his first visit to the Rebbe together with his father, as well as his meeting Rabbi J.J. Hecht one of the first of the neighborhoods activists.
He told about how he grew up with his family not far from Crown Heights and added in jest, separating himself from Mr. Bloomberg, “I know how to get to Crown Heights in a car from the ivory towers myself without a driver, and even by subway.”
On the topic of Metzitza B’Peh Shmuel Kazen, Gabbi in the Oihel Nosson shul, challenged Mr. Thompson asking him if elected how he would handle the matter. Thompson responded that outgoing mayor Michael Bloomberg refused to listen proposals relating to health and religion from the Jewish community, only to turn around and proudly announce to the media that he will not be listening to anyone and will do it his own way.
Mr. Thompson said that should he be elected he would listen to any proposals and try to work out a plan that will both be sensitive with the health concerns and at the same time respect religion.
Also attending the event was Frank Seddio, the new chairman of the democratic party in Brooklyn and former Kings County surrogate court judge.
Mr. Seddio talked about how Crown Heights has changed from the 60′s and 70′s when he was a beat cop here. He spoke about how dangerous the neighborhood was back then and had words of praise for Shomrim, the group of volunteers who selflessly protect the neighborhood, which was formed to combat crime back then.
The event was organized by Yankel Behrman, a young political activist along with local businessmen and residents Mendel Pershin, Yossi Rapoport, Mendy Margolin .