Al Gore’s Assault on the Upper East Side


Anne Viscecchia, her sister Elisabeth Walsh, Ivy Berchuck, Todd Rosenbaum, Stephanie Tannenbaum and Madge Miller, and Leslie Stevens.Photos: Miriam Datskovsky

Al Gore spoke at the 92nd Street Y last night, and crowds thronged the Upper East Side institution’s Lexington Avenue entrance in advance of the event. There were a handful of Gore 2008 campaigners, a group of enthusiastic — if basically nonsensical — Lyndon LaRouche supporters, (none of whom came from New York and most of whom were dressed in fat suits and leaves), and a great number of enamored New Yorkers. They stood around, confused and bemused by the LaRouchies, waiting for friends to arrive — mostly, alas, in cars — for the lecture. We asked them about their thoughts on Gore, the election, and their carbon footprints.

ANNE VISCECCHIA, Long Beach, New York
You’re a big Gore fan? I am a Democrat and voted for him and would like to see him run again. Would you vote for him over Hillary or Obama? No. So why do you want to see him run? Just to keep things interesting.

ELISABETH WALSH, Long Beach, New York
What have you been doing to reduce your carbon footprint?. This is all new to me. So why’d you come in today? To accompany my sister.

IVY BERCHUCK, Forest Hills
Did you vote for Gore in 2000? Absolutely. I think he has important things to say. About everything. What are you doing to reduce your carbon footprint? Well, I’m careful with recycling. I take it very seriously. And I’m careful with the use of gas; I use public transportation. How’d you get here tonight? By car.

Would you like to see Gore run for president in 2008? I’m not sure it would be the best thing for the Democratic Party. I’m just not sure he’s the right guy right now. I do really like him, but I think I would probably vote for Obama at this point over Gore. Have you seen An Inconvenient Truth? You know, I still actually haven’t seen the movie. I own it, but I haven’t watched it yet.

STEPHANIE TANNENBAUM, Short Hills, New Jersey, and MADGE MILLER, Brooklyn
If he ran for president, would you vote for Gore over Hillary or Obama? S: Without a doubt. What are you doing to reduce your carbon footprint? S: You’ve kind of stumped me on that one. M: I have to say I wasn’t really into global warming that much until after I saw Al Gore’s movie. Since then, every time I go to the supermarket I’m like, “Don’t put that in plastic, put it in paper.” So it brought a newer message to me.

What brought you to see Gore? I think he’s the closest a politician can get to being a rock star. What are you doing to reduce your carbon footprint? My building switched to lower-energy bulbs. My block association has planted tons of trees. We’ve also begun planting more plants, at the base of the trees. How did you get here today? I took a cab. I was late. —Miriam Datskovsky

Al Gore’s Assault on the Upper East Side