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June 26, 2006

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ABC News
Charlie the Conqueror” [by Joe Hagan, June 19] is a sad commentary on what a bloated star system the once highly respected network news divisions, increasingly desperate for ratings, have become. Programming decisions seem to be dictated by the whims of a handful of grossly overpaid, overrated celebutante “journalists” playing musical chairs while attempting to claw their way to the top. Really, does this sort of nonsense happen at the BBC?
—Don Vainonen, Manhattan

Sudoku
If Clive Thompson really wanted to find out what Will Shortz thinks about Sudoku, he should have completed the puzzle that Shortz showed off at the beginning of the piece [“The Puzzlemaster’s Dilemma,” June 19]. The clue for 98-across is “Sudoku and others.” The answer? “Fads.”
—Ruth Graham, Brooklyn

Work Diaries
Regarding Yael Kohen’s “Watching the Clock” [“Diary,” June 12]: I would have been much more interested in reading about people who actually do something all day. While Risa Tanania was ordering breakfast at 10:25, I—a New York City public-school teacher—was trying to teach 25 kids to read, breaking up a fight, and cleaning up vomit.
—Suzanne Adelman, Manhattan

South Street Seaport
Your food writers managed to profile several establishments in the South Street Seaport neighborhood that have yet to even open their doors [“Destination: Sea Change,” by Robin Raisfeld and Rob Patronite, June 12], but they mysteriously left out one of the most popular pioneers of the recent neighborhood transformation: Fresh Salt on Beekman Street, where an eclectic mix of sailors, rockers, business folk, artists, and students converge under one roof.
—Lauren Bentley, Manhattan

Twins
When I was asked if I’d read “Gangs of New York” [by Sarah Bernard and Hugo Lindgren, June 12], I said I wouldn’t, because it’d be totally predictable. It’d say that we’re overprivileged, overeducated older parents who were so busy making money that we “forgot” to have kids until we were too old to do it naturally, hence took drugs and got a twofer. I picked up the piece anyway and was glad to read an honest, down-to-earth recounting from the authors, who clearly recognize that New Yorkers aren’t just the too-posh-to-push, C-section-scheduling, work-driven, fabulous parent types we’re frequently presumed to be, and that New York can be a tough town in which to have even one kid, let alone two.
—Stephanie Dolgoff, Manhattan

Sexual Abuse
In “On the Rabbi’s Knee” [May 22], Robert Kolker gratuitously mentioned that while he researched a story on child sexual abuse, my office declined to discuss Project Eden, a program for adult victims of domestic violence in the Orthodox community. Project Eden is not for child sex-abuse victims; it’s funded by the Department of Justice’s Violence Against Women Office, to help prosecute domestic-violence crimes against Orthodox women. It is one of many grant-funded, culturally sensitive programs we have to combat domestic violence in Brooklyn’s diverse neighborhoods. He also wrote that my office would not discuss in detail how we handle sex-abuse cases in the Orthodox community. Yet he had unrestricted telephone conversations with my Sex Crimes bureau chief, Rhonnie Jaus, discussing the details of several such cases.
—Charles J. Hynes, District Attorney, Kings County, Brooklyn

Robert Kolker responds: Although Jaus did agree to discuss certain past sex-abuse cases, the district attorney’s office repeatedly refused to discuss the larger point—what unique measures, if any, it takes to investigate and prosecute child-molestation cases in the ultra-Orthodox community, given the community’s resistance to outside forces and cultural pressures on victims to stay silent.

Corrections: In “Best Doctors 2006: Who Decides?” (June 19), the upcoming edition of Castle Connolly’s Top Doctors: New York Metro Area should have been listed as the tenth.
In “Party Lines” (June 19), the photograph labeled “Edgar Bronfman” is actually a picture of Steve Tisch.

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