Marty’s Message: If You Disagree With Marty, You Don’t Count

At yesterday’s day of action on Prospect Park West, one contention from the opposition especially didn’t sit well with everyone who turned out to support the redesigned, traffic-calmed street. With hundreds of bike lane supporters gathered on the sidewalk a few feet away, Borough President Marty Markowitz’s chief of staff, Carlo Scissura, told the assembled crowd that the new PPW is the vision of just “one person,” referring to transportation commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan.

asdf
Photo: ##http://www.brownstoner.com/brownstoner/archives/marty_082809.jpg##Brownstoner##

A Park Slope constituent contacted the BP’s office to set Marty straight, and received a response from a Markowitz staffer. Here is an excerpt:

In your email to the borough president, you referred to the 1000 or so people from the community that signed a petition in support of the bike lane. With this, I assume you are referring to the Park Slope Neighbor’s petition. The borough president’s position regarding this petition is simply this: he rejects the assertion that Park Slope Neighbors is in any way representative of this community. Though you may disagree, the borough president’s criticism is not unfair. Park Slope Neighbors has primarily focused itself on advocating for the kinds of transportation changes the DOT implemented on PPW. Having positioned itself as a transportation advocacy group, seeking traffic calming in Park Slope, they have sacrificed a claim to impartiality. This is not a critique of the merits of their case, simply a statement of fact that they can not have their cake and eat it too: they can not purport to being objective or representative if they are going to also take strong advocacy stands for the particular type of transit policy DOT is implementing. Consequently, the borough president is well within his right to challenge their findings and dispute the relevance of any survey they issue. Again, as an issue advocacy group they are inclined to find data supportive of their positions. Consider this: for every signature they obtained on that 1000-person petition, how are we to know how many people from the public did not sign on because they did not agree with its stated purpose. If I stood on a street corner and asked you to sign a petition to ban dogs completely in Prospect Park, you would likely not sign it (hopefully) though I’m sure I could get a plenty of people to do so. I could then cite the numbers of people who signed the petition as proof that the community agrees with my position.

People, just give up with the organizing, awareness building, and public assembling already. If you want to be active in your community and make change happen, that’s nice and all. But if you want Marty to listen, first you’ve got to agree with Marty.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Tell Marty Markowitz You Support DOT’s 9th Street Plan

|
If you live in or around Park Slope, Brooklyn, then please take just a minute to click this link and send a fax to Borough President Marty Markowitz expressing your support for DOT’s traffic safety plan for 9th Street.  As we’ve reported here on Streetsblog, the Department of Transportation has put forward a thoughtful and […]

Markowitz on PPW Data: It’s a Vast Biking Conspiracy

|
It’s hard to know what to say after viewing this CBS2/Marcia Kramer segment. Watch Marty Markowitz allege that bike counts on Prospect Park West were inflated because advocates got tipped off by DOT about when the counts would happen, then biked over to use the new lane on those days. Your jaw may drop. Marty […]

Marty Markowitz Chooses the Perfect Moment to Jump Into PPW Lawsuit

|
How’s this for some impeccable timing? Less than 48 hours before the next scheduled court date in the Prospect Park West case, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz is inserting himself into the proceedings in an attempt to keep the tenuous suit from being thrown out. Yesterday afternoon LCG Communications, the PR firm representing bike lane […]

Three Myths From Marty About the PPW Bike Lane

|
It’s showtime for the Prospect Park West bike lane, with a bike lane protest and a rally for the redesign coming up tomorrow morning. In a prelude to the big day, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz is making some rounds in the media. The Brooklyn Paper and NY1 got some choice quotes from the beep, […]