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Op-Ed: My Kids Will Go Hungry This Week, Thanks to Mr. Bloomberg

by Leah S.

I’m a hard working mother of four. My husband takes the subway to work in the morning and returns home in the early evening; I remain at home with the two younger ones. I am busy all day cooking, cleaning, feeding, changing, nursing and bathing. Many of you will sympathize with me (I know Ann Romney will) when I say that I work every day; I just don’t get paid for it.

I also own a car. Yes I know Mayor Bloomberg (proud owner of a fleet of helicopters, yachts and limousines) quips from time to time that New Yorkers don’t need cars. Try taking four kids to visit Grandma – who lives in the outskirts of Queens – on the subway, or perhaps a bicycle.

You can understand that, with only one parent working and the fact that we have to pay for tuition, after rent is covered there is not much money left for food. But we manage. My husband and I are satisfied with what we have. We don’t complain (until this op-ed :), and never ask for handouts. One thing we can’t afford, though, is a driveway. We have to parallel park our car on the curbside.

Because of that, according to Mr. Bloomberg I am an evil person. Why else would he hound me every day and do whatever he can to make my life unbearable?

Every single weekday (except for Wednesday), I have to drop whatever I am doing and move the car to make room for a big machine that blows leaves and garbage around without cleaning much. If I forget to move my car, I get slapped with a $45 fine.

Those of you who own a garage or driveway just don’t know what it’s like. If I know I won’t be able to move the car the next morning, I have to roam around the surrounding blocks for eternity looking for a spot on the right side of the street; this can sometimes take over an hour.

But that’s the easy part. I am not here to complain about that.

Since there is not physically enough space for every car in the city to park on one side of the street for an hour and a half, there is an unwritten rule that you can double park during that time. Why this is an “unwritten rule” is beyond me, apparently in the world of New York City legislators the basic laws of physics don’t apply.

Since it is an unwritten rule, there is no “buffer zone” during which it is okay to move your car back, nor is there a five minute “grace period.” This means that if you move your car back a minute after 12:30, you get ticketed for double parking. This is a whopping $115 dollar fine.

Now it’s semi understandable that the city issues such a hefty fine for those who maliciously double park – it blocks traffic, it blocks in the parked cars and it’s a selfish thing to do. But there is a reasonable amount of traffic cops at any given time and place in the city to randomly seek out and ticket these offenders. And the fines are supposed to be a deterrent, not a revenue mechanism.

But Bloomberg uses our predicament – the fact that we have no choice but to “break the law” and double park – as a tax collecting tool. The second Street cleaning time is up Mr. Bloomberg’s honchos swoop in like vultures and issue $115 dollar fines to any car whose owner did not yet frantically scramble out of their home and move it back in the nanosecond between 12:29.99 and 12:30 (those pesky laws of physics again!).

So basically it goes like this: if you don’t follow the rules, you get fined $45; if you try to follow the rules but slip by even one minute, you get fined $115.

Now if Mr. Bloomberg needs the money to pay the lavish salaries and benefits to the city workers who don’t shovel the snow and yell at you in the subway booth, let him be honest about the cost of our government, and balance the books by either raising taxes (which will probably drive business away) or cutting spending (which will probably drive votes away).

Instead, Mr. Bloomberg has a perfect solution: pick on the politically powerless demographic of hard working lower-middle class people, who own a car but can’t afford a driveway.

Yesterday, as I was feeding my infant, my alarm struck 12:25. I finished feeding the baby as fast as I could, put on a pair of slippers, grabbed the keys and rushed outside. I made it to my car at exactly 12:31.

The traffic cop must have had a better alarm; he beat me to my car, and all my pleas and excuses fell on deaf ears.

So this week my children will go hungry. Because $115 that was supposed to become warm meals in their tummies will now become cold cash in Mr. Bloomberg’s pocket.

I’m sure he will spend it well.

74 Comments

  • 2. yoss wrote:

    Well said. Pity no-one cares or will do anything about it.

    Maybe some of the hand-shakers and smilers in CH can pass on your words to Mr. Bloomberg, he seems to appear in someone’s houses in CH every other week.

  • 3. If only Bloomberg would read this lol wrote:

    he still wouldnt change anything.

    But let him take a slap on the face.

  • 4. Ahavas Chesed wrote:

    Send your kids to Ahavas Chesed for a few meals. They needn’t go hungry.

  • 5. advice wrote:

    set alarm on your on your cell phone or oven for 12:15. Since there is a 10 minute grace period….you can already move your car back at 12:20. That way even if you are a couple minutes late…your probably won’t get a ticket.

  • 6. Is the melodrama necessary? wrote:

    I hate to tell you but Mr. Bloomberg only takes an annual $1 salary from the city. He is not lining his own pockets – if you think that you have no knowledge of how basic government works.

    And no, you don’t need a car in New York City. Certainly when we did the math we found it was cheaper to buy two monthly unlimited metrocards and pay for the odd car service or daily rental car (or zipcar by the hour), then to have the cost of a car in NYC – insurance, gas, maintenance, and either you budget for tickets or a parking space. Of course if you buy a new car you will be making those payments as well. When you own a car here you need to build the cost of tickets into your budget.

    I always say, “Having a car in NYC is like having another child to take care of.” (Caveat Emptor: I’ve owned several cars in Crown Heights).

    If you truly won’t be able to feed your children, I suggest you contact Baila Vilenkin in the community council or Mrs. Spielman on President St. or Mrs. Scheiner on Montgomery St. All of these ladies can help you with sufficient staples to feed your children for the week.

    You can always choose to fight your ticket or ask for a reduced fine. Most judges are lenient.

    You are not a child, you know when alternate side parking is, you are welcome to move your car in the evenings so that it doesn’t have to be moved.

  • 7. jp wrote:

    King “Lowlife” Bloomberg makes Dinkins look like the best mayor ever. thats why so many new yorkers moved out

  • 8. I left NY and I never looked back! wrote:

    We moved out of NY a few years ago because I was sick of being a slave to my car. It was on my mind all the time, am I parked in the right spot, did you move the car, etc. etc. etc. Since I moved I have never had to worry about my car, not once!

    Keep paying high taxes, watch as the NYPD drives through red lights all the time on the way to Dunkin Doughnuts and be a slave to your car, as for me and the many that left before and after I did, we are kicking it up anywhere but NY and we are loving every minute of it.

  • 9. Huh? wrote:

    This is your issue, no the cities. You are not a good citizen. Try pulling that garbage in any other city. It doesnt fly. You have only yourself to blame.

  • 11. eli and joseph ezagui wrote:

    shoulda made time to move the car. child abuse, and you brag.

  • 12. Dr. Holmes wrote:

    You can try to fight these tickets with an online hearing, i tried twice unsecessfully but it cant hurt to try.

  • 13. Don-t blame others wrote:

    If you can’t take upon the responsibilities that come along with owning a car in Brooklyn, than don’t have one. I have had one(without a parking space) for 4 years now, and two young children at home, and yet have found a ticket on my car(for street sweeping issues). Yes, I understand the frustration, but if it’s too much, don’t take it upon yourself. Don’t blame someone else for your children not having food. Own up to it!

  • 15. Joe wrote:

    If you dont like it move…a city still has to run…just b/c your situation is hard that doesn’t justify the city shouldn’t have rules.. you seem to “look down” on those that their situation is better than yours… how about be thankful you even have a car.. many people don’t have a car and have to trudge through snow to take kids to school etc…I spend time the NIGHT before looking for a parking spot that is NOT on that side of the street so my wife doesnt have to worry about it the next day… sometime it would take an hour.. and parking blocks away…..that is after riding home on the subway.. a little preplanning and you wont have to kvetch…

  • 16. You are wrong wrote:

    You may be right about the ticket issue, but why mix the rest of your life into this

    You live in the best city in the world for someone like you who does not make enough to live!! there is no other city in the world that gives you

    A – FREE HEALTH BENEFITS
    b – HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS IN FOOD STAMPS & WIC
    c – BASED ON WHAT YOU WROTE YOU SHOULD BE GETTING THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS BACK IN TAXES (MORE THEN YOU PAID)
    D – THE FIRST FEW YEARS OF EDUCATION AND CAMP FOR FREE
    E – YOU CAN GET SECTION 8 AND PAY 80 DOLLARS A MONTH FOR RENT
    F – FREE CELL PHONE

    AND WHO PAYS FOR ALL THIS? THE RICH PEOPLE WHO PAY 40-50% OF THEIR HARD EARNED MONEY WHO GET NO BENEFITS

    YOU SHOULD SAY THANK YOU TO MR BLOOMBERG FOR ALL HE GIVES YOU FOR FREE SO YOU CAN HAVE ALL YOUR KIDS AND STAY HOME AND ENJOY LIFE

  • 17. barry wrote:

    Please send this article with copy of ticket to Bloomberg office, and Albany.

    as well ad NYT ant the post.

    you will succeed.

  • 18. post in newspapers wrote:

    Well Written. Please post this article in the major New York newspapers and be very vocal about it. address it to Mayor Bloomberg. I bet you will get a great response from the people and better yet Mayor Bloomberg might be forced to give answers to the public.

  • 19. IT AINT THE RICH ITS THE MIDDLE CLASS wrote:

    to number 15! it aint the RICH that gives these people that are “off the books” ALL their benefits! its the hard working low income paid MIDDLE CLASS peeps that have to pay for everything you mentioned!

  • 20. Jeff wrote:

    To #6

    Please read her op-ed before commenting.

    1. She doesnt say he keeps the money, she clearly says it is spent on public workers.

    2. her main point is simply that cops shoulnt swoop in and target double parkers after street cleaning. she isnt saying double parking should be legal.

    3. you cant take four kids on the subway. especially if there are multiple transfers and city buses to take. it is simply impossible.

    4. parking on the right side the night before only works for half the people. as she said there isnt enough physical space for everyone to be able to do that.

  • 21. hope the mayor listens wrote:

    To #10…your are cruel. The writer has legitimate concerns. I live out of town and when I visit Crown Heights for a Simcha…just the few days with my car rental makes me have sympathy for all the New yorkers who spend all day and night moving their cars back and forth and be constantly aware of the logistics of when and where to move your car under pressure to do it exactly at the right time and with barely any parking spaces available. As an out of towner, I’ve gotten tickets due to being new to the parking restrictions in New york… and it sure is not fun having to move your car before 8 a.m. after you’ve come home from a wedding at 2 a.m. and barely had any sleep. Hope the city eases the restrictions or if the street is swept at the very beginning of the restricted hours maybe there could be a digital signal or alert message that would allow people to park for the remainder of time.

  • 22. to 15 wrote:

    Welfare is a curse to all, but the people most cursed by it are the un/underemployed people who can’t find proper jobs because their potential employers are being pick pocketed by government so they can’t afford to undertake more employees. Or as Limbaugh says, the “safety net” has become a mahogany for the poor because they have to be crazy to leave the benefits how few they may be, to earn $20,000 a year.

  • 25. to 6 wrote:

    You are ill informed. Mayor Bloomberg practically owns “Waste Management Inc.” (one of the most prominent companies he owns a huge stake in, they make billions). When Bloomberg makes waste cleaning policy, not only the he directly benefit in NYC contracts, he benefits because many cities look at NY as they formulate their own waste strategies so he sets a template that very much benefits his company in municipalities worldwide. You read that right. Waste Management is an international corporation

  • 26. DaveRamsey.com wrote:

    Being middle-class in Brooklyn is a nightmare. You don’t qualify for help, but you can’t afford to live well. If your husband can’t significantly pick up his income in the next 6-12 months in NYC, look for jobs out of town. Medium-sized communities in the South and Mid-West love hard-working frum families.

  • 27. The same Cop... wrote:

    was waiting behind my car at 12.29 if i come literally 1 min late i would be the one yelling.

  • 28. #28 wrote:

    if he wants to help the city or anything else with taxes his 1st concern should be for children

  • 29. Two weeks ago wrote:

    Two weeks ago I doubled parked on Kingston bt empire and Lefferts and got a ticket before 130

  • 30. to #27 wrote:

    Sorry but that is kinda funny! but at the same time not i hate it to have missed the cop giving me a ticket or to catch them right as they complete it.

  • 31. From #6 wrote:

    To # 20:
    1. reread the last two paragraphs “So this week my children will go hungry. Because $115 that was supposed to become warm meals in their tummies will now become cold cash in Mr. Bloomberg’s pocket. I’m sure he will spend it well. ”
    She clearly indicates he’s LINING his own pockets. That’s not the case.
    2. I didn’t say anything about her choosing to double park (which is ILLEGAL).
    3. It is ENTIRELY POSSIBLE to take 4 children on the subway. I’ve done it myself and there are certainly thousands of people who have taken 4 or more children on the subway (and the bus and multiple transfers). It’s only a tircha if you choose to make it one. As I said, there is always the option to take a car service or rent a car for a day trip which is still cheaper then owning a car.
    4. Urban planners are well aware that only half the spots at night “work” for the people parking and that half will have to move. Plenty of people move their cars because they are USING them.

    To #23: Waste Management is a privately held company. It has NOTHING to do with alternate side street cleaning which is performed by the Department of Sanitation. Waste Management is just one company, any corporation can contract with who ever they want for waste removal. Bloomberg should stop being a successful businessman just because you’re not?

    To #25: Please tell me what is nonsense? Would you like me to provide you with a breakdown of how we calculated this? If she needs help feeding her children there are several organizations in our community to help her. The dramatics are not necessary.

    Simply put: either you have to calculate the TRUE costs of owning a car in NYC or you shouldn’t have one. No where does it say you should live beyond your means. For the vast majority of the world and the “lower middle class”, owning a car is a LUXURY. Would I LOVE to have my own car? To have the ability to go where I need when I want? Sure. But it’s not cost effective for us. I’d rather spend my money towards buying a house – but that’s a different OP-ED isn’t it?

    Yidden! Stop living beyond your incomes!

  • 32. Trader wrote:

    This is absurd.

    While I definitely sympathize with your predicament, I must point out that the revenue from parking tickets does not go into Mr. Bloomberg’s pocket or towards his yachts and limos. He earned his money the old fashioned way; by creating something significant and being a brilliant business visionary. As someone who uses a Bloomberg trading machine every day, I am actually grateful for his inventions and contributions to our industry. He is notorious for being a down to earth man who works ridiculously hard. With a net worth of $22 billion, he really doesn’t need a salary. In fact, he is paid just $1 a year for his mayoral duties..

    I am sorry for your unfortunate situation, but unfortunately, you are barking up the wrong tree. Parking tickets are part of life. They are annoying and will ruin one’s day, but they are also a necessary evil. Your complaint may be legitimate, but it’s definitely not the mayor’s problem..

    Good luck!

  • 33. Well done! wrote:

    You write very well and your point is very valid. I wonder if CH.ifno has a way of getting this passed around?

  • 34. Nobody wrote:

    I think the “not being able to feed your family” shtick, is shtick. I certainly hope so. Don’t pay the parking ticket – sell your car if you have to, but feed your kids first. Seriously, priorities.

    Between gas, insurance, maintenance, etc., it is cheaper to visit Grandma in Queens by car service occasionally. Not to say a car isn’t a good thing (I have one), but really – compared to feeding your family??

  • 35. Chaim wrote:

    If the city can allow mountains of trash bags to litter the sidewalks on pickup days, they can’t be very concerned with cleanliness. Most cities require that trash bags be placed in bins with lids, but instead they send out trucks 4 times a week to rearrange all the curbside trash (you should see how well those trucks clean) and they give you a fine if you are in the way.

  • 36. Go Governor Walker of Wisconsin wrote:

    It’s not about cleaning the streets, It’s about giving jobs to public Union employees…….This is what you get when you vote for Liberals……Bloomberg calls himself Independent, but he’s a Liberal….
    He may be giving us parking tickets, at least he’s protecting us from the TWIN evils of BIG GULPS and SLURPEES!!!!

    And to those like #6 and #12 who want to tell this decent lady how to live her life, whether or not she should own a car, have forgotten the lessons we Lubavitchers learned, living under the Iron fist of the Soviet Union and Stalin.

  • 37. What-s your address? wrote:

    I will send you a check! Chas Vesholom your kids won’t go hungry.

  • 39. Nobody wrote:

    #34, you are wrong – in many places in America, and in many circumstances in New York, a car is a necessity. Not a fancy car, but a car. If you work in Long Island, for example, you have no choice (if you live there as well).

  • 40. waste of time wrote:

    Bought a house in Flatbush with driveway rather than live in Crown. Heights, Try explainingt to out of towners why something that is illegal is legal for an hour and a half,just to sweep dirt around. Work in CH and set my phone drop everything and run!

  • 41. Decades long fellow sufferer wrote:

    This has been the case for a very long time. The street “cleaning” rules are an onerous burden, an annoyance for the community and a revenue generator for the city. Pity we have no political clout.

  • 42. Fed up AND I have a garage!! wrote:

    1) Middle income working class people generally do not qualify for benefits. These are the people who can afford the car but not the driveway nor the extra ticket. They live on a budget cuz they get no handouts and a $115 ticket is a real hardship.

    2) My husband parked our car on Lincoln pl. one day and didn’t check the signs. When I came to get the car it was the only car parked! NO ticket! Alt. side was almost over!!!! Another time I parked on Maple between Albany and Troy to go to Bnos Menachem and I forgot that I was double parked! I came running out about 35mins late and I did NOT have a ticket! Anyone seeing a pattern here………
    The outskirts/non-jewish areas of CH somehow not so quick to get tickets!!! It barely takes a minute to get one in the ‘jewish’ area!!

  • 43. Boruch wrote:

    Leah, I have had a similar incident nearly two years ago. In my case i got there nearly 45 min late and would have accepted gladly accepted responsibility until i noticed that the ticket was written at 12:01pm (12 to 130 was the time it needed to be moved) I then decided to try my luck. I approached a traffic cop and asked him for the time on that little machine they use too ticket, the time was a minute later than the time on my cell phone which. I then went online and submitted a non-guilty plea explaining that i got there at 12pm using my cell phone time (lying is definitely not the way to go but i hope it was justified). I elaborated a little by explaining that i approached an traffic officer etc. The outcome was… NOT GUILTY and did not need to pay the fine.

    Hope this helped!

  • 44. To No: 15 wrote:

    You are exactly whats wrong with the Frum Crum community . Get a job and see how it feels.

  • 45. send this to the ppl who matter wrote:

    Well maybe you should sent your article to an official website or news paper where people who matter will read it….
    on this site you are just preaching to the choir of ppl who are “amen”ing but not going to do anything about it.

    Also the fact that crown heights has alternate side parking every day is so psychotic! its not normal! in queens where my family live there is alternate side one day on each side of the street…and most people have driveways!

  • 46. oy wrote:

    And im sure you are not on food stamps or wic because you make $32 dollars over the limit…..

  • 47. Shop out of the heights wrote:

    Why dont you take your car and drive to path mark near the Atlantic Center and buy groceries there?

  • 48. please read this wrote:

    dear fellow mother, i agree, I have to beg my neighbors to watch my baby while i run for the car.I DONT GET ANY GOVERNMENT HELP YET I DONT COMPLAIN> IT IRKS ME THAT HONEST MIDDLE CLASS HAVE TO SUFFER>I BELIEVE YOU WHEN YOU SAY YOUR BUDGET IS ONE HUNDRED FOR THE WEEK FOR FOOD>YES MY FIRENDS THOSE OF USE WHO GET NO HELP LIVE ON A STRICT BUDGET SO WE CAN STASY AFLOAT.SHAME ON ALL THE SCAMMERS. ANT THOSE WHO TRULY NEED MAY HASHEM HELP YOU WITH PARNASSAH

  • 50. wtvr wrote:

    what a piece of drek, go peddle your make no sense politics elsewhere. life is hard for you? boo freakin hoo, be happy your husband is currently employed and you own a car, i know many families in our community that WISH they were in your position.

  • 51. Oh, please.... wrote:

    I live on Eastern Pkwy too, and as long as you keep it in mind the night before, it’s no big deal. How about hubby switch the car to the appropriate side for the next day, when he comes home from work??

  • 52. unknown wrote:

    Having a car is a luxury – all the costs and expenses should be weighed. If one cannot afford a driveway, then live with the consequences of alternate side parking. Without alternate side, the garbage would accumulate in the streets, our drinking water would become polluted, and the health of her precious children would be in jeopardy. Bloomberg has only done good for this city – the laziness and self-righteousness of a stay at home mom is no reason to demolish a necessary service.

  • 53. That Happened to Me!!!!! wrote:

    If I didn’t know better I could have sworn someone wrote this story for me. It’s exactly what happened to me a few months ago. I also got a ticket for not moving my car back…the time on the ticket was 12:31!!!

  • 54. nutz wrote:

    “Many of you will sympathize with me (I know Ann Romney will)”

    um, ann romney has never struggled a day in her life she is loaded. she doesnt have any of the financial problems you indicate, they are building a CAR ELEVATOR IN THEIR HOUSE!!! geez…

  • 55. to #49 wrote:

    to #49….wow! That hits hard…using the expression of
    “the laziness and self righteousness of a stay at home mom” was ugly and uncalled for. What a horrible thing to say!
    Being a stay at home mom is not being lazy at all! Just the opposite. You seem very bitter. And for your information a good portion of the money a woman earns goes to the babysitter, especially today with salary pay cuts.

  • 56. gitty g. wrote:

    1. stop with the irrelevancies! Most comments ere made by men, i can tell! Try to have two or three pitzlach in the house and just run out!! only fathers can be so happy go lucky..women are responsible and anzious about their childrens safety first!!

    2. Mayor Bloomberg is an arrogant jerk!! he has no idea how us regular folks live! has a huge contingent around him always, preparing the way,smoothing out possible pitfalls etc. Wake up! His life is quite different from ours and he has no grasp of how the mid and low income people live!

    3.He just wants to leave a tight legacy when he leaves office…

  • 57. Out of Towner wrote:

    As an out of towner I would come in once every 4-6 weeks to do a major shopping in Crown Heights. This was for grocery, STAM and tznius clothing. Invariably I would get some kind of ticket. Some were legitimate others were questionable. After thinking things over I said to myself why am I subjecting myself to this fiscal and mental stress every time I come in? I answered with my feet and wallet! I now do my major shopping in Monsey. I get the same food at similar or prices. My drive is the same but I don’t have to worry about parking or tickets. I am sorry Mayor Bloomberg and even more so to our fine Crown Heights store keepers you wont be seeing my business anymore!

  • 58. wow wrote:

    Yes, grouping “stay at home mom” with lazy was pretty low. Who are you?

  • 59. ETE wrote:

    I am so happy that I don’t life in CH anymore!
    Because of Bloomberg and all the people that are so nasty to the lady that wrote this op-ed!
    SHE IS 100% RIGHT.
    Who ever disagrees, never ran a business in CH or doesn’t have a car!

  • 60. Answer to #6 wrote:

    You don’t seem to realize that traveling with children on a train or bus takes more time & energy than traveling by car

  • 61. You for sure will win wrote:

    There was a law passed last year that says: If you come to the car 5 minutes and less, you can’t get a ticket.

  • 63. I beat it wrote:

    FYI: I went down in person to Manhattan, and beat my double parking ticket. All it cost me was $4.50 in train fare. Good Luck

  • 65. 61 you are wrong wrote:

    The law only works if you forgot to move your car to clear the road being cleaned. It does not work for the double parking because that is an unwritten law. You can’t officially double park.

    The law should be that they cannot fine you PERIOD if the reason your car is there because of alternate side parking. But that would only work to the benefit of the citizens so good luck getting that passed.

    PS I got a 12:32 ticket (in a 12:30 spot)

  • 66. whine whine whine wrote:

    no one really cares about your car tickets. life is unfair dear. you dont like your elected official? tough, thats life…

  • 67. Shaindy wrote:

    This sounds like the uninformed self absorbed rantings of a spoiled out of touch woman. Get a grip, I seriously doubt you or your children are going to go hungry. The world does not revolve around you princess, you have to follow the rules like everyone else.

  • 68. mendel wrote:

    to nu 6, there are no more redused fines the city dosnt offer that anymore,thanks for your help

  • 69. I Hate NY wrote:

    Bloomberg is a lowlife – there is no quality of life in NY because of him. Thank G-d I don’t live in that sick place, but in the odd time that I do come in, I feel sick as soon as I cross the GWB into NYC.

    It already happened to me more than once that I drove in from out of town (7 hour drive) with 6 children – and forget finding a parking in CH at 3:00am, when I pulled up in front of my parents house (blocking the bike lane on empire) a sick cop pulled up behind me and ordered me to move – while my children were exiting the car – when I tried to explain that I just drove 7 hours and am just unloading I was told “move or I’ll give you a ticket”

    This article doesn’t even come close to describing how sick Bloomberg and his policies are. and for those people bashing this article, I guess that you can compare that to a drunk person who doesn’t know he’s drunk – get out of NYC for a couple of days and learn that there is a nice world out there with humans that act like human beings…

    My sympathies to all people stuck in that sick place.

  • 71. Working Mom wrote:

    You could write for extra money and not do be hard up for cash. Tickets are annoying, but in this day and age , if you do not want hand-outs, two incomes are a necessity. Slippers ,for me, at mid day during the week, are an absolute luxury.

  • 72. Clear conscience, but feel like a fool wrote:

    The subtext of this article is the fact that there are still many honest struggling working class families who are following the rules — for example, all of their income is on the books; or maybe their job doesn’t give them the option to lie about their income because their employer puts all the paychecks on the books.

    And the honest families are hurting, and they resent that they are on the up-and-up and see people scamming the system and living easier than they are.

    We are a small family, K“A”H, and own a very small house that we only live in part of — renting out much of it to support the mortgage. I work nearly full time, and my husband works full time and moonlights after work as well.

    So we’re of course expected to pay full tuition. And we don’t qualify for food stamps, section 8, WIC, help with utility bills, Head Start, etc., etc.

    I wouldn’t mind all of this if I didn’t see:
    1) Neighbors who are on food stamps eating freshly-cooked fleish during the weeknights:
    The only meat we eat during the week is what’s left over from Shabbos — chicken, generally, for a day or so.
    2) And I see ladies on Section 8 who have time to attend lots of daytime shiurim held while I’m having to be at work.
    3) And I see folks who get WIC driving a newer, nicer car than our decade-old clunker.
    4) And I see people whose kids qualify for Head Start “somehow” able to go away to a place in the mountains for much of the summer, while we’re lucky to get away for one Shabbos a year, to visit friends living where the air is clean.

    Don’t get me wrong: We count our blessings and our consciences are clear.

    But what I see going on, where the cheaters on these needed programs make all the legitimate recipients look bad, is a true Chillul Hashem. It’s only a matter of time before this is exposed for what it is.

    Meanwhile, we pay our occasional parking tickets (and make Chicken cholent — no flanken or cold cuts except maybe on Yom Tov) grinning and bearing it.

    But what’s wrong with these frummies who choose to cheat???? Where’s their conscience?????

  • 73. Nobody wrote:

    For those who feel like fools for not taking section 8, etc. Just realize that in other social groups, some people feel like fools for not dealing crack, etc. And the economic difference is much bigger.

  • 74. to number 27 wrote:

    Instead of getting her address( which the only way is for her to write it online, cuz u didnt give yours, and she wont, cuz its embarrassing) how about you donate to an organization who feeds familys that need help, and write online which one your donating to.
    hopefully, she wont need it
    Moshiach Now

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